August 27, 2014, 05:08:12 AM

Author Topic: Canon to Offer Dual Pixel CMOS AF Upgrade for the EOS C100 Digital Video Camera  (Read 8560 times)

unfocused

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 2013
    • View Profile
    • Unfocused: A photo website
Has anyone figured out if they are replacing the sensor. I don't understand how this can be just a firmware upgrade. Someone suggested the dual-pixel sensor had already been put in place in the C100, but that seems like really incredible advance planning to have put the sensor in a camera that was announced more than a year ago.
pictures sharp. life not so much. www.unfocusedmg.com

sanj

  • 1D X
  • *******
  • Posts: 1453
    • View Profile
And do those cams have af sanj?  And if so does the dop or cameraman use it?

No Paul the cameras I use come with manual focus lenses and my focus puller has worked with me now over 16 years through several main steam movies.

tjc320

  • SX50 HS
  • **
  • Posts: 4
    • View Profile

Yea, there are definitely going to be two sides to this and neither are necessarily wrong. That said, mark me down as part of la résistance.

I oppose autofocus in the same way that I oppose gas grills, coffee machines, wood laminate furniture, cheap beer, and implants.

Ah.. you forgot to add... electric shaver, electric stove, electric iron, ATM, washing machine, elevator, escalator, bread toaster, etc... Why would someone hate such conveniences?  If it makes life so much easier, why'd you hate it?  It's not  yet perfect but somebody/someone got to start somewhere... right?  It is there because you want to enjoy life more.  Stills AF was first developed with that thing on their mind.  Now, you almost can't live without AF.  :)

No no no no no. I didn't leave those things out on accident but on purpose. There are things that almost certainly help makes life convenient and at no sacrifice to quality and allow you to speed up meaningless tasks. Then there are things that make things faster but at a sacrifice of quality and meaning. A coffee machine makes bad coffee fast - which is fine for some people, but a french press will always produce a better tasting coffee. In the same way - autofocus is fast and easy but you aren't able to fully control all the creative aspects of focus. These things aren't bad - they just aren't better.

paul13walnut5

  • Guest
And do those cams have af sanj?  And if so does the dop or cameraman use it?

No Paul the cameras I use come with manual focus lenses and my focus puller has worked with me now over 16 years through several main steam movies.

Exactly.

LetTheRightLensIn

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 3490
    • View Profile
AF has no place on a serious video camera.

really?? Because not every type of video shooting scenario is exactly ideal for carefully set shooting with an extra focus puller. Just because you only shoot one particular type of thing doesn't mean that is the only thing everyone does. Sure the regular MF way with carefully pulling is best for lots of stuff but absolutely not for all stuff!

Most of the stuff I do these days is on the hoof.  No focus pullers.  I know that my way is not everybody elses way.  But I do know, that in the professional arena, amongst my peers, no matter where they work, or what camera they use (generally 2/3rds ENG format) none of them use a camera with AF on it, let alone, AF.

Day one of cameraman school.  You get get your fingers rapped if you use auto anything.  So you practise for 2 years before they set you free.  Yes there are muppets shooting stuff for the PA or Getty, trashy celeb type stuff, with z1's or XHA1's and use AF.  But they are muppets.  Muppets with tiny sensors.  And short careers.

Once again you still have only listed a small portion all potential types of shooting.
You entire forget about certain types of wildlife and natural world shooting to name one. Sure MF can be better for that too in many cases, but absolutely not for all.

Up until very very recently the Bbc shot it's wildlife / natural world stuff on film.  Totally manual cameras.

The excellent hebrides series was shot on a mix of panasonic p2 eng cameras and phantom.

Neither have af.

I know this because I asked John Aitchison what he used.

In the follow up documentary 'Wild Cameramen at work' it showed you how the most memorable shots from the bbcs natural earth output was captured.  Lots and lots of planning.  Lots and lots of waiting.  Lots and lots of takes.  A little bit of luck here and there.  Not any of these guys, widely considered to be the best in the business, used an af camera.

They have baftas and rts awards coming outthrir collective bottom, so I'm more inclined to follow their lead.

For sports stills and nature stills, yeah.  AF has its place.  I've always made the distinction clear.  For hobby family video guys, af has its place.  For professional video work it does not.

Yes, but there are scenarios and types of shots they miss or don't try to bother with. And sometimes they have to use extra DOF to help cover. And some times they also practically use sets or even literally use sets and don't always get it quite in an entirely natural state fashion. They have teams and sometimes plan out and stake a spot out for months. You won't want to use AF for everything by any remote means, but it could help with some things and for sure if you are a bit smaller scale and time constrained than that. And for someone just out hiking and wanting to grab high quality footage there are scenarios where AF could definitely help at times and work out better than manual, not always, but at times.
 


paul13walnut5

  • Guest
[quote author=LetTheRightLensIn link=topic=17943.msg333150#msg333150 date=
 And for someone just out hiking and wanting to grab high quality footage there are scenarios where AF could definitely help at times and work out better than manual, not always, but at times.
[/quote]

The c100 isn't for casual video folk out on a hike.
I've said from the start that af has it place.

photonius

  • Rebel T5i
  • ****
  • Posts: 128
    • View Profile
Has anyone figured out if they are replacing the sensor. I don't understand how this can be just a firmware upgrade. Someone suggested the dual-pixel sensor had already been put in place in the C100, but that seems like really incredible advance planning to have put the sensor in a camera that was announced more than a year ago.

Well, the dpreview news blurb certainly mentions that the sensor will not be changed, but it's functionality will be activated. This certainly requires new firmware, but may also require additional new processing hardware. Note that the framerate for single shot is also increasing.
It's not surprising that the sensor was already there. Coming up with this dual sensor probably took Canon quite a while in development.
I speculate that the dual pixel technology was being developed for quite a while. It probably was meant to be deployed earlier, such as a new 7D II, the EOS-M, the C100, etc. The earthquake in Japan probably set back quite a number of projects.  Anyway, when Canon felt they could no longer hold back on putting a mirror-less on the market, they put out the EOS-M with the "old" simple sensor-phase-detect AF used in the 650/700 cameras.

In case of the C100, by that time the sensor was already ready. However, for the AF, now that the sensor was available, they needed a lengthy period to develop the software (firmware) to allow the AF to work with all the lenses - and still not all work. They could release the C100, because that camera did not rely on working AF to be sold. In the case of the EOS-M, this approach would not have worked, since it needed a working AF, so the older sensor was used.  By the time the 70D was released, almost everything was resolved. I say almost everything - because the 7D II is still to be released. If it would be just a question of better body etc., it shouldn't have held back the release of the 7D II, so I think there must be more going on with the sensor that they want to put into it (I'm still hoping for the high dynamic range trick, as also used by magic lantern)


dilbert

  • Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS II
  • *******
  • Posts: 2807
    • View Profile
The C100 is the cheap-end of the Cinema EOS line so it makes sense for it to have a bit more bling than the expensive models.

It may also be that Canon is using the low-end (cheap) model as a test to see what sort of market demand this announcement creates.

But consider this: they wouldn't have done this (improved video AF) if nobody had asked for it.

kphoto99

  • PowerShot G1 X II
  • ***
  • Posts: 57
    • View Profile
It may also be that Canon is using the low-end (cheap) model as a test to see what sort of market demand this announcement creates.

By making people send the camera in to them for this "firmware" upgrade, they know exactly how many people are interested. If they allowed the firmware to be downloaded then the numbers would be approximate.

The only people who will send the camera in are they ones that really want this AF since they have to give up the camera for some period of time.

Possibly also they can get some stats from the cameras how it was used, this is speculation on my part.

Ryan Ricaborda

  • SX50 HS
  • **
  • Posts: 2
    • View Profile
As a one band man who uses multiple C100s for documentary work, especially for interviews, 70D style autofocus will make my work much easer.

Been doing manual focus pulling for a relatively short 15 years now with different high end video camera and I don't mind this fancy new AF technology being an additional tool to my kit but I'll definitely would not want to abuse it. Tried the 70D autofocus and found its focus either still not as precise or if it does hits its focus - a bit too artificial in feel, very unlike a good human focus puller.  However I can imagine in the future technology will make it possible for AF cinema cameras to make focus pulling better and more human like in its behaviour.

This development kinds of reminds me of 80s when still film cameras were starting to get reliable autofocus. It really polarised people.