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Messages - JasonATL

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The alpha version that I'm using does not auto-boot. You must load it each time you want to use it by going into the Canon menu and selecting Firmware update. Not a huge deal. The nice thing is that it can be on your SD card and only loaded when you need/want it.

Also, the alpha that I was using on the 5D3 is quite conservative in not writing over Canon settings. Thus, there are key ML features that aren't there right now. But, for me, having focus peaking, zoom, histogram, and vectorscope make it very useful and address a lot of shortcomings on the 5D3 with respect to video.

I focus prior to hitting the record button. To do so, just zoom in using the magnify function. Set the focus, then hit record.

To focus during recording, things are not so easy. I use a viewfinder, which does help. The one I use is fairly inexpensive (around USD100) and is called the LCDVF. This magnifies the LCD screen and makes it visible in daylight (plus adds a bit of stability if shooting hand-held). Still, getting precise focus this way is fairly challenging. I can almost do it on my 5D3, which has a better LCD than the one on the 60D, I think.

As is pointed out many times here, DSLR's are not substitutes for traditional video cameras, especially when it comes to the need to change focus during the recording.

There are other methods that use a firmware hack, called Magic Lantern. But, that's opening up a can of worms that you might not be interested in. If you are, try searching on "Magic Lantern Focus Peaking" in Google and you'll find plenty of information. If you have questions about that, I and others here will be happy to respond.

Thank you!!

Are you using a 5D3 with one of the beta versions of ML ?

You're welcome. Yes, I've been using the the ML 5D3 beta. Whenever I use the 5D3 for video, I've been using the ML beta. Unfortunately, I haven't had the time to shoot much video recently.

Good luck!

cayenne - I read over your other thread, too - so I'll respond to a couple of things.

First, to your question here: yes, I tend to underexpose (according to the camera's meter) when using Marvel. Actually, I rarely even refer to the in-camera meter. Rather, I use the histogram to set my exposure. As Axilrod suggests in the other thread, it is often desirable to preserve the highlights. The only way you can do this is to use the histogram. Also, the histogram I use is Magic Lantern's, which has a very helpful clipping indicator and a way to set/change white balance (and a vectorscope, if you prefer to set white balance by looking at the vectorscope).

Second, I prefer Marvel as a "flat" style compared to Techinicolo Cinestyle in many circumstances because it isn't so flat that you must do a ton of work in post to get some contrast back. However, Marvel is flat enough to preserve some shadow detail and some highlight detail in my experience. Properly exposed (as you are seeing), Marvel looks pretty good out of the camera, yet holds up nicely in grading. 

Regarding the lack of LUT for Cinestyle: I never used a LUT and was pretty happy with what I could get Cinestyle to achieve. The problem is that I HAD to apply something to every clip and I sometimes suffered problems with banding because I was stretching so much. My point is that, without a LUT, you get most of the way there by adding back a lot of contrast with either a contrast adjustment or by using curves and adding an S-like shape to the curve. Then, tweak to taste.

Lighting / Re: Advice on lighting set up in kitchen for video with 5D3
« on: February 01, 2013, 08:41:22 PM »
Can you forgive a noob question, but what is CRI? What does it stand for and how does it affect things and how does it work with respect to color temperature?

Here's a link for CRI: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_rendering_index

My pedestrian understanding is that the CRI measures the amount of true color (or the amount of the full spectrum) that the light source will provide (setting aside white balance). The higher the number, the more true the color representation. The lower the number, the worse. My mental model for low CRI is a light in a parking garage in which everything under it only looks green or blue-green, or a street light in which everything only looks orange. The same applies to many household or office fluoros (and CFLs) that seem to muddy the colors, even to the naked eye. This was my caution against common household CFLs, especially warm ones. My experience is that they make getting appealing color out of your recordings fairly difficult, even if you have white-balanced and temperature-matched the lighting sources. My concern is especially keen here since you are shooting food, in which color perception affects people's perception of how well it is prepared or how fresh it is.

I've seen some suggest that you can get away with having the high CRI source as primary source of light, and the CRI of fill and accent lights is not as critical. I'm personally skeptical of that.

I'm with Paul. There is a science here (not that I fully understand it).

I try to follow the advice that we spend a lot of money on cameras and lenses, and we should spend what is needed in time and money on lighting to get the most out of the camera and lenses.

Lighting / Re: Advice on lighting set up in kitchen for video with 5D3
« on: February 01, 2013, 06:29:30 PM »
I used a lot of CFL's in my light kit. I love them because of how cool (meaning, not hot) they are. I even bought several boxes at different color temps to help me match to the practicals when shooting in various locations. For example, my daughter's school has fluoros that are around 3500k, so I can use my 3500k's to match there. In my house, I have some household "warm" CFL's that are around 2700k and come in handy rather than trying to gel or switch out the bulbs in the practicals.

Having said that, there is cost in terms of color that you will pay when using CFLs. In my experience, that cost in terms of color rendering gets higher, the lower (warmer) the temp of the CFL due to them having a lower CRI. Most "photo" and "full spectrum" CFL's are 5000k or 5500k (or higher). So, I've now bought a set of gets, rather than having the different temp CFL's. The only high CRI CFL's that I have found in a "tungsten" temp are those by KinoFlo (at $25 per 26 watt CFL ~ 100 watt incadescent equivalent). I haven't bought them yet, but they will be the next bulbs I buy.

Since you are shooting food (I assume, since its a cooking show), I think you'll really want to capture as full a color spectrum as possible. Therefore, gelling the CFL's you have, as suggested by Dantana, is probably preferred to getting warmer CFL's that are likely to have a lower CRI. Of course, if you bought your current CFL's at home improvement store, they may or may not have a high CRI.

B&H has a lot of gels. You want to look for CTO gels. Each 12"x20" sheet cost about $6, plus shipping.

Also, a handy web reference that I have found for calculating the gels you need is this:

EOS Bodies - For Stills / Re: Canon 5D Mark iii + 50 1.4 ii?
« on: January 03, 2013, 10:25:11 AM »
The 50mm 1.4 and the 5D3 are a great pair. My wife keeps the 50mm 1.4 on her 5D3 by default and only changes it for special purposes (mainly if she wants telephoto with the 70-200mm). For family gatherings, etc., she keeps the 50mm on and gets great results.

As others have said, the 50mm 1.8 is actually quite good, too, considering it only costs around $110. But, we still prefer the 1.4. If you can afford the 1.4, then I'd say go for it, as you'll probably want it eventually.

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: Blackmagic Design Cinema Cam finally shipping!
« on: December 24, 2012, 07:04:15 AM »
Shop called and said the distributor already has them and mine will be here 2 days after Christmas!  Looking forward to playing with it.

Congrats! A merry Christmas, it sounds like.

After following it for a while, I decided late in the game to pre-order. So, I'll live vicariously through you and others for a while. Looking forward to your thoughts as you work with it.

peederj - In my test video, I looked for that. The resolution makes this a not-so-clear test. However, it does appear that there is a benefit to using the HDMI out in color resolution. Therefore, my best guess right now is that the current HDMI out is 4:2:2. And, I agree, having 4:2:2 is a very nice step up when trying to color grade or even add sharpness.

By the way, you can see the red effect that you describe in another video I did. It shows a way to greatly help with the type of blocking that you describe around red, especially when applying a sharpening filter. The solution is to use a very weak color blur filter prior to sharpening. https://vimeo.com/42314148

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: CF or SD or ext for video on canon 5d mkiii?
« on: December 03, 2012, 08:00:22 AM »
I was referring to both SD and CF with regard to the 5D3. I have recorded video on the 5D3 on both types of cards and have noticed no difference. Not to open another can of worms, but if Magic Lantern can provide higher bit rates, then SD vs. CF might matter more and, in this case, a fast CF card is likely to be preferred.

I really like the Hyperdeck Shuttle. It is elegant in its simplicity and provides a nice choice of codecs. It is also inexpensive compared to others. However, if your purpose for getting one is to use with the 5D3, you should wait to buy one until tests are done to verify that it mates well with whatever Canon comes out with in April.

You can see the Magic Lantern HDMI results here: https://vimeo.com/52822486

Some have said above that ML's implementation is lacking. That seems to misplace the blame on ML. They are working with what they have in terms of the current limitations. The primary limitations are: 1) The resolution that the Canon firmware makes available to HDMI (1620x1080); 2) The fact that the HDMI out is 1080i.

Because of 1, the same frame that is internally recorded must be cropped (zoomed) from the HDMI output, so the resulting resolution is 1620x911 (and does not even appear to perfectly resolve that resolution, just as the native 5D3 footage does not resolve the full 1920x1080 resolution).

The interlacing is a real pain and limitation. While there could be a limitation in the Hyperdeck Shuttle that I used in recording the interlaced signal, I simply could not reliably reconstruct the 24p signal. I could reconstruct it with a lot of effort, but it was a bit soft. Even the 30p signal was a bit soft after deinterlacing.

My own testing using a resolution chart shows that the HDMI out from ML does seem to resolve about the same resolution as the internal recording, albeit with pillar bars (since it is only 1620x1080). Oddly, though, the shot must be framed differently, since you must zoom in. Thus, with a very good deinterlacer, this might be useful for greenscreen work (assuming you don't need the full 16x9 frame).

In short, while the ML clean HDMI out might be useful for some purposes, it doesn't work for me right now in its current implementation to yield any significant benefits. There is a chance that ML can improve their HDMI out. However, I suspect that the 1080i HDMI output is something that they simply cannot overcome.

I don't think the ML implementation gives us any indication of what Canon's firmware will be. If Canon were going to do what ML did, they could have released clean HDMI already. This gives me hope that they will 1) give us at least as good a resolution as currently is recorded internally; and 2) provide a true 24p signal or at least have the 1080i embed the 24p information so that it is easily and cleanly recoverable. If they do these things, then the externally recorded material should show significant benefits, even if it is 8 bits. The benefits will be in less compression artifacts on highly detailed and dynamic (in motion) material from the higher available bit rates and less color compression from 4:2:2 vs. 4:2:0.

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: Upgrade from 7D to 6D or MK3?
« on: December 02, 2012, 05:58:50 PM »
Based on the videos I've seen so far from the 6D, I'd say the extra $1,000 or so is worth it to avoid moire/aliasing. The 6D seems to have no better video quality than the 5D Mark II, especially with regard to moire/aliasing. Add to that the ability to monitor audio and I would say that the 5D3 is worth it, assuming you have the budget. Given the moire/aliasing on the 6D, then I think the key question for video is between the 5D Mark II and the 6D, if you can live with moire/aliasing. Is the 6D worth the extra few hundred? Having said that, when I used a 5D Mark II, it felt its age. Video was great. It just felt old in how it operated.

Look for deals that come up on e-bay or others from autorized retailers, as the 5D3 price is now reliably often in the $2800-$2900 range.

Personally, I'm looking forward to the 7D replacement. I would love to have a crop-sensor body that doesn't have moire/aliasing issues and has improved low-light capability compared to the current crop sensor cams. While I like the 5D3 (the one I use is actually my wife's) - especially its almost nonexistent moire/aliasing and its low-light capability - I have found that I think I might actually prefer the crop sensor for video. The DoF is plenty shallow - and not too shallow, like the 5D3 can be sometimes. I actually still use my 600D/T3i quite a bit, even when my wife would let me use the 5D3.

If moire and aliasing don't bother you on your current 7D and the lack of headphone output isn't an issue for you, then I would say to get the 6D (or 5D Mark II, if you can find one) and spend extra on glass.

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: CF or SD or ext for video on canon 5d mkiii?
« on: December 02, 2012, 05:36:43 PM »
I favor the faster CF and SD cards mostly because I can download them via my USB 3.0 card reader faster. Slower (Class 6) SD cards would cause problems with other Canon DSLRs (like the 550D/T2i and 600D/T3i). I stick with Sandisk Extreme (not Extreme Pro - though I have nothing against the "Pro"). Never had a problem with the camera writing to Sandisk Extreme's.

I'm looking forward to April's clean HDMI firmware update for the 5D3. I have a BlackMagic Design HyperDeck Shuttle (a very budget-friendly device, but with no monitor - only passing through to another monitor). It records from the 5D3 fine now, except that it isn't at full resolution and is only clean using Magic Lantern's Alpha release for the 5D3. There are some issues that remain to be seen with the firmware update. The biggest issue is how the HDMI output will treat the 24p framerate and whether it will have 24p out or if it will be embedded in the 1080i out. If you don't already have an external recorder, I'd wait to see reports of how each external recorder pairs with the 5D3 when the firmware is updated in April.

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: Inexpensive lens for Video
« on: November 30, 2012, 07:59:35 AM »
Hi Everyone
Always used my 60D for stills; but now our old video camera has crapped out, which my wife normally uses. I figure if I leave the 60D on video/auto all day my wife can snap and on and shoot videos of the kids in case they do something cute.

I love my wife to death but she has a tendency to "Drop" things. :) thus i dont want to leave my 17-40 or 24-105L on the camera; will video quality suffer greatly if I buy a cheaper 28-135 or maybe 17-85 lens for her?

Please keep in mind it's just for family memories; I don't need to hear about moire, etc lol. I just am looking for insight or recommendations on an inexpensive alternative lens for decent video. I am also not too sure about what focal length is best for video...

thanks for your help!
I use my DSLRs (600D/T3i and 5D Mark III) for video only.

As you might have already played around with and figured out, the AUTO mode can have mixed results for video. These DSLRs may not be great replacements for simple video cameras in many candid, capture-the-moment situations in the hands of people who are used to or prefer the simplicity of a video camera.

As to the lens, compared to the nice quality L's that you mention, image quality will suffer, but not "greatly" in my opinion. Yes, there is a difference in video with good vs. not-so-good lenses. The lenses you describe are reported to be nice lenses, so I'm not sure you would see much difference at all. I seriously doubt that using a cheaper lens (e.g., the 18-55mm) will make the video worse than your "old video camera." But, I don't know how good your old video camera was or a lot of other things.

The 17-85 would be the best bet. Anything longer is just not practical in my opinion for what you are describing (candid, probably handheld shots) and the wider end will sometimes come in handy on the crop sensor (as you know from having the 17-40). Image Stabilization is a must unless you are okay with shaky footage (don't know if your old video camera had it or not). Unfortunately, the 17-85 isn't very fast, so the ISO will end up being quite high... Again, I'm sure you know that already. I haven't used AUTO mode in so long, I can't even recall how low it will set the f-stop before preferring a higher ISO (my vague recollection is that it won't go very low).

Not disregarding the last sentence, you might also consider the 50mm 1.8. Fast and cheap with good image quality.  No IS and no zoom. Focal distance match is up to you. But, for what your describing, might preserve some great memories... and, you'd have added a prime to your mix of lenses for stills. But, zoom might take a priorty, I understand.

Bottom line: 17-85 would be my pick for what you describe.

EOS Bodies - For Video / Re: 5D3 vs. BMC
« on: November 19, 2012, 03:19:42 PM »
Aside from the sensor size, it's pretty much killing the 5D3 in every aspect.  The 5D3 is great if you want a hybrid stills/video camera but for straight up video the BMCC is amazing.  I have one on order, will probably keep my 5D3 still but couldn't pass up on 2.5K Raw for $3k.

Axilrod: Me, too. Although, I was late to the game and only ordered my BMCC in September. I fear that I am in for a long wait. Having said that, I don't think it will cause me to never use my 5D3 or even 600D. I am still quite happy with the image from those cameras in many situations. I still love the DSLR look. Of course, my view might change when I have the BMCC!

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