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Messages - JasonATL

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EOS Bodies / Re: Hardware Hack for EOS Cameras Coming Soon? [CR1]
« on: February 28, 2014, 07:36:42 AM »
I'm intrigued by this for video reasons. The ML raw hack is great for getting good image quality, but it is not really all practical for most uses for me. The main limitation for me in making it practical is hardware, in that I can only record 10 minutes on a 64 GB CF card.

Add hardware that has the ability to mount an SSD drive? All of the sudden, this camera is as (or more) functional than, say, a Blackmagic Cinema Camera. Add a good codec that will record a 10-bit ProResHQ file (even to a CF card)? That would be very nice, too - perhaps even better than raw. More dynamic range would be fine in video, but if you are just going to record it in an 8-bit, compressed as %$#! codec, then what's point?

Finally, it will depend on who the company is. Is it ML? Those guys are great with software, but what about hardware?

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: Canon 7D Major Issue
« on: September 02, 2013, 09:45:44 PM »
I had this happen with a week old 5D3. It was a bent pin in the CF slot. Try taking out the CF card, then take the battery out. Put the battery back in with no CF card. If the camera seems to function, then it is probably a bad CF pin. Also could be a bad CF card. Bad SD cards create this behavior on my T3i. Key is to remove cards, then battery. If it isn't the card, then cam will have to go in. Good news is that Canon service isn't terrible.

A couple of ideas:

1. Rent/Borrow/Beg help.
2. Rent portable lights.

It sounds like one of your key (pun intended) concerns is not having any help. If I lived closed to you, I'd be glad to help, just because I enjoy shooting and working on projects like this. You might find others in your area (especially perhaps folks younger than I) who have a similar attitude. If you're getting paid for the gig, perhaps paying them, at least in beers, might suffice. They can carry and set up at least one key light on a stand or just handheld to perhaps provide enough light for what you'll need (especially if you'll interview people). You've got some time to meet at least once with them to make sure you're on the same page.

Another idea is to check with a few of the venues to see what kind of lighting they might have and might be able to use for you. I shot a wedding reception for a friend. The DJ had set up the venue with his lights. After talking with him, he offered to throw a spot light on people for certain activities (dances, toasts, etc.) and even knew the color temp of the lights so that I could plan accordingly. If they are sponsoring it and want some promotion from it, they'll have an interest in helping your video turn out well. For example, perhaps they'll keep one corner lit rather well as a place to do interviews or other shots.

Good luck!

Cayenne - also, you might get more responses if this thread is in the Video forum. I was just lurking in this forum because of the new Sigma 18-35mm/1.8 lens (did I mention that the lens preference might be different for the BMCC?).

So, what's the thoughts here about the $1995.00 Black Magic cinema camera, with EF mount?  Pros? Cons? How well would it fit into my equipment bag for video, especially in light of the 5D3 having full RAW in the predictable future?

Thoughts? Comments?


I have the BMCC and I sometimes use my wife's 5D3 for video (less now that I have the BMCC). Here are some thoughts on your questions and my experiences with the BMCC as someone who loved shooting video on my (and my wife's) Canon DSLRs.

First, I would say that the BMCC would not make a good 2nd camera. That's because it makes a good 1st camera! The video from the BMCC is better than the 5D3 in almost every way when comparing the BMCC's compressed (ProRes or DNxHD modes) or raw to the 5D3 compressed (H.264). The picture quality is really so much better from the BMCC. It does suffer aliasing/moire issues, but not as badly as the 5D Mark II or other Canon DSLRs. It's resolution and color are just so much nicer than the 5D3, in my opinion, that it makes up for the aliasing/moire.

When comparing the BMCC to the 5D3's raw, the BMCC still has an advantage, though it is narrowed. The advantages of the 5D3 now become: lack of aliasing/moire, better low light performance, and the full frame aesthetic. The negatives to the 5D3 (besides having to deal with ML) are: short recording time on available media and expensive media (compared to high capacity and relatively inexpensive SSD drives for the BMCC).

Also, the cropped sensor of the BMCC takes some getting used to when coming from the 5D3's full frame. Depending on what lenses you have, this might be an issue for you. My favorite lenses on the 5D3 (my 50mm and 85mm) rarely get used on the BMCC, since my favorite focal lengths on the BMCC are 35mm or less. Plus, the shallow depth of field is possible on the BMCC, but it isn't just there like it is on the 5D3 - you have to work for it.

Shooting with the BMCC is different than shooting with 5D3, for most of the above reasons, but for others, too. There is no histogram, the white balance choices are limited, there are no audio meters,... But, most of these issues are no big deal, once you learn the camera a bit. Plus, the footage (raw or even ProRes/DNxHD) is so flexible, that you can overexpose just a little or have the white balance really wrong and still get a good image in post.

Depending on how you shoot, the form factor is also an issue. The BMCC is, in my view, clunky. It is a heavy box with a long protruding lens. It isn't pretty and it is awkward to hand-hold. If you always shoot on a tripod, then it is no big deal. If you have a shoulder rig, then it is just a bit heavier. If you shoot hand-held, .... well,... switch to a tripod or a rig. With a lens with IS, you can shoot handheld and I do. But, it just isn't like the 5D3.

Then there is the battery. Internal only, not replaceable. Lasts about 45 minutes. An external battery is a must. There are some decent ones and they're not too expensive. But, they add to the bulk of the camera and equipment.

The form factor was also an odd fit in my camera bag. I had to rearrange my bag in a way that I didn't like. It just didn't fit well in my DSLR backpack. I finally ended up getting a Pelican case that holds my BMCC and rig. I now have a separate Pelican case for lenses. So, I feel less nimble with the BMCC than I did with the DSLR or even my huge EX1.

But, for all of these negatives, I just love the image I get out of the BMCC. I bought it for the raw capability, but the compressed mode (using the log FILM profile) is so great that I don't shoot raw much. Don't get me wrong - raw is great and it is better if I know there will be moire, some moire can be almost eliminated from the raw files. In compressed mode, I can shoot for hours on an SSD. Then, I just plug the SSD into the computer and edit from there. You don't get the drop in quality in going from raw to compressed on the BMCC the way you do on the 5D3. In fact, on a lot of BMCC material, you probably couldn't tell if it was shot in raw vs. compressed.

In summary, for video, the BMCC might become your #1 camera. The crop factor might have you preferring different lenses than you do with your 5D3. The form factor is definitely a negative coming from the 5D3. But, if an awesome image is your highest priority, the BMCC is hard to beat at that price.

I thought about a Pocket Camera as a second cam. For as little as I would use a second cam, I decided to use the 5D3 when I needed one. Problem is, the raw on the 5D3 is such a pain (mainly the short time on a single CF card) that I rarely use it. The even more extreme crop on the Pocket Camera (and need for new lenses) are definitely negatives to that camera for me. I might even pick up a second BMCC EF! At this price, it is tempting.

Software & Accessories / Re: Canon EOS 7D RAW Video?
« on: August 02, 2013, 09:59:32 AM »
Very nice development. With the CF card, continuous 1080/24p raw might be possible. I'd prefer this to the 5D3, since I actually prefer the APS-C sensor size for video. Excuse me while I order a 7D...

Pricewatch Deals / Re: Announces
« on: July 24, 2013, 07:41:28 PM »
The prices on the lenses that I am familiar with are not that great compared to what you can find on Ebay or Craigslist, but you get a real warranty and return privileges.  Plus the Lens Rentals crew apparently tests the optics on each lens, so I'd say overall it looks like fair prices.

I do wonder why they sell off these lenses that are in apparently "rentable" condition.  Do they expect them to start malfunctioning after a certain amount of time in use?

I've found their prices to be fair. Yes, you can probably find a lower price. But, as others have said, the assurance that you are getting something as good as or better than advertised is worth quite a bit.

I've bought used gear from LR before (and rented) and they've always delivered at or above expectations. My only regret is buying any of my lenses new.

Besides LR, I bought a used lens from Adorama. Like those lenses I bought used from LR, the one from Adorama also seemed better to me than its rated/advertised condition.

The bottom line is that an outfit such as LensAuthority or Adorama has so much reputation at stake that a one-off seller doesn't that a premium, if any, is very much justified and worth it.

I'm glad to find out that it is owned by Roger. I suspected as much. I agree that it makes sense to separate the two. I'll start looking there for my used purchases.

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: Strange blue in place of black
« on: July 16, 2013, 04:04:54 PM »
However, I don't get the problem when I'm using sunlight through the kitchen window. It seems to only happen when the lights in the kitchen are on.

Hmmm. What kind of lights?

This now makes me wonder about your shutter speed. If it is set to 1/60 or higher, try 1/50 or even 1/40.

Edit: Never mind. This doesn't really flicker that much. But, I still wonder about the lights. This is odd...

It appears that is transitioning their used gear for sale to I asked about this and received an e-mail saying that they were transferring their used gear slowly to

This disappoints me, as I have bought a few used items from and been very pleased with their service and the quality of the used gear. I've also been a pleased customer of their rental business.

I know nothing about and their site has very little info about them as a company. My hope is that it is owned by Lensrentals and that they've started a new site to handle sales. This would lead me to expect the same good service and quality control. Does anyone know anything about Lensauthority? Who they are? Where they are located? What their reputation is?

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: Strange blue in place of black
« on: July 15, 2013, 11:24:56 AM »
Aliasing was my first guess on this, but I've rarely seen it show up as blue only - there has always been some red show up, too. But, it most likely is aliasing.

Since you said that you use Sony Vegas, here's another trick that you can try along the lines of what Paul has suggested:

Add a Chroma Blur fx to the image. This has the potential to do better than the suggested Gaussian Blur, since it only operates on the chroma, not luma. In your case, the aliasing is a color artifact, so the chroma blur might be sufficient. I'd experiment with the setting by starting with the 1 pixel and increasing to see if it improves. I've found that a 0.5 pixel (h and v) chroma blur actually works quite well, especially in front of a the Sharpen fx.

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: High noise at low ISO
« on: July 11, 2013, 10:49:11 PM »
Yes, I was using in camera metering.

I'm just now learning about the histogram.  I'd gotten the expose to the right advice on my stills, but there I was shooting at high ISO, and was underexposed.

I didn't think to find how to see the histogram for video.  I'll give that a shot.

Trouble is, I have a whole cooking video shot and edited, that I don't know how to finish grading without it looking like crap.

Everything is slightly, I have to raise exposure.

Yes, the blown out I referred to...the scopes were peaked out up top.

Any suggestions for salvaging my current shoot? It is going to YouTube for HD....otherwise I guess I'll just have to live with this one being noisy.

But man...I have yet to get a decent looking video out of the 5D3 so one done was the first one that used the standard setting.

OH well, I'll keep trying...thanks for the ETTR advice and the histogram on the video, I'll try that next!!!


A trick that MIGHT help with the noise, especially if it is color noise, if you haven't tried it already: In Resolve, add chroma blur. To do this, you must create a layer node by first creating a new serial node (from Node 1 in the attached image, adding Serial Node 2). Then add a layer node (the Add Layer Node adds node 4 and the Layer Mixer). This creates a diamond-shaped set of four nodes, with the one on the left being the last node you had, which splits into to nodes, then comes back together in the layer mixer node.

Right click on the layer mixer node to set its composite mode to "Add". This brightens the image, but isn't actually what we're trying to do. Go back to the top node  (node 2) and set its saturation to zero. Now go to the bottom node (node 4) and set its luma to zero (do this going to the Primaries tool and setting the Gain's Y channel as low as possible: 0.01, I think).  Now you have a separate luma node (node 2) and a chroma node (node 4), which are added together by the layer mixer. Go to the chroma node and use the blur tool to add a blur to the chroma channel. This effectively blurs the colored noise and leaves only the luma noise. Therefore, depending on what kind of noise you have, it can be very effective.

If the Neutral or Standard picture styles worked, why go to Cinestyle? I have an on-again, off-again relationship with Cinestyle myself. I sometime love it until I hate it and then use Neutral for a while, only to be lured back to Cinestyle... until I hate it again. In the end, the 8 bits of data just aren't enough.

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: BMD 4K, EOS C100 or 5D3
« on: July 11, 2013, 04:45:18 PM »

I'll throw two wrinkles in the mix:

1. BMCC (Cinema Camera, not 4K) Many of my comments about the BMCC apply to the 4K.
2. Sony FS100 or FS700

I have the BMCC and just used it to shoot a friend's wedding. It wasn't terrible to use for an event such as that. I do wish I had had a bit faster camera in terms of an available higher ISO. ISO 800 was fine, but the dimly lit church left me too scared to use my 2.8 zooms. I shot at 2.0 and had enough just enough light (a little less even than I would have liked). Keep in mind that the 4k is a full stop slower. If your events are always well it, then the 4k with a stable of zooms should work well.

The BMCC can shoot 2.5k, but I've found its DNxHD/ProRes mode @1080p to be excellent for most of my needs. Plenty of detail and a very nice robust, flat (FILM mode log gamma) image that is easy to color correct (even if the white balance is off). The compressed 4:2:2 10-bit codec is so good in this camera that I could see anyone buying this camera without ever intending to use raw. The same is likely to hold for the 4k, but it is, again, 1 stop slower and reputed to have 1 stop less dynamic range. Shooting directly onto an SSD is VERY nice! Having a 480 GB SSD drive and shooting for hours and then having access immediately on a PC is very convenient.

Form factor is just okay. It won't be as nice as your 7D. The Blackmagic cams can be handheld if you have a lens with IS (and steady, strong hands!). Even on a rig, it is heavy unless you are used to really heavy rigs.

The cropped sensor is a bit of a downside that you wouldn't have with the 4k. The 5D gives you the opposite problem, though with too shallow a DoF for some circumstances, in my opinion.

With the adapters available for the FS100 and FS700, I'm curious as to why they aren't on your list. If because of form factor, I understand, I guess. I don't have any experience with either camera, but seriously considered them over getting the BMCC. Form factor kept me away from them.

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: High noise at low ISO
« on: July 11, 2013, 08:54:28 AM »
Cayene - when you say, "blown out", do you mean that the whites are clipped? Specifically, have you lost detail in the highlights? In Resolve's scopes, this would show up as a straight horizontal line at the top of the Waveform monitor or straight vertical lines at the right of the histogram.

How did you expose in camera? Were you relying on the 5D's exposure meter to hit the center (or 1 stop below, when underexposing)? I have found that Cinestyle really needs to be exposed by ignoring the meter, looking at the histogram and overexposing (commonly called "expose to the right" or "ETTR" for short),  but being careful so that nothing important is clipped (i.e., no vertical line showing up on the right side of the histogram). This is really easy when there is no highlight in the scene that SHOULD be blown out. If there is something in the scene that should be blown out, such as shooting directly at a light source or a reflection of a light source, then that should show up as clipped. Once I got used to using the histogram, I could figure out what was clipping and what wasn't. Basically, the histogram gives you more info than the light meter and you expose what you want.

When using ETTR, the image will look like crap prior to color correction. But, after you bring down the shadows (and perhaps the mids) and add contrast, it should look very good, assuming no important highlights were actually blown out or clipped. In essence, you are pushing the noise to black by doing this.

By underexposing and then lifting the exposure in post, you are adding digital gain, which will increase the noise, not decrease it. You want to go the other way: overexpose and then decrease the exposure in post. This reduces noise. As I said above, the catch here is to not overexpose so much that you lose the highlight detail.

Here's my latest short/test with this firmware, I continue to be amazed:

This was shot over a Memorial Day rock climbing trip to Idaho.

Very nice! The picture quality is amazing. Resolution, dynamic range,... everything!

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