On the Cutting Edge: Digital Still Cameras for Film, Part 4

My new Canon T2i

In part 3 I talked about the drawbacks to using digital still cameras for film. In this part I’ll be talking about the equipment we are looking at.

Picking the Right Camera

We are looking at a number of the Canon’s high end still cameras, specifically the Canon T2i, 7D and 5D. Each of these cameras are capable of taking full 1080p HD video. Thats a technical way of saying they take video at the highest video quality commonly used. While there are other brands that are able to take high definition video, Canon cameras are more widely used for film projects.

Earlier this week I bought the Canon T2i. We probably will not be using this as our primary camera. There are some issues with focusing when using external equipment that would make it hard to use during the interviews. We would not want to do an entire interview only to find out later the focus was off.

The body is smaller than other cameras. This means it’s not as durable and it may not work with bigger lenses. I am getting this for more of a personal camera. It may also be used to film some “B role” material for the doc.

For our main camera we are looking at the 7D or 5D. These are the cameras most widely used for filming. They do not have the focusing issues of the T2i and have other additional features.

There are also rumors that Canon will be announcing a new camera geared more towards video in the coming weeks. It could have a rotating display among other advanced video features. Since we are not in a rush to make this movie there is a chance a newer camera will be exactly what we are looking for.

Learning the Equipment

In order to better understand how to shoot with these cameras I am attending an all day workshop with Philip Booom taking place this Saturday. I mentioned Philp Bloom in part 2 when I posted a video he did using these cameras. I’m very excited to be learning from the best. I think it will be a good experience and it will cover everything from what lenses we should use to editing.

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