Some food for thought
The following information is from one of my regular contributors. Read, enjoy and discuss.

5D2, 7D and 1D4
Digic IV was not designed as a video processing chip, hence it cannot downscale multi Megapixel images in real-time at a frame rate needed for video. The fastest camera ever released by the company is the 7D and it can only down sample by pixel binning close to ten 18MP images to any smaller size a second. Current implementation skips vertical and horizontal lines then averages pixel values.

Digic V has a new on die area for video processing which lets it do up to 60 1080p frames a second with help from a pre-encoding ASIC chip that does pixel binning really fast. This will generate an image with almost no visible artifacts or moire. It will still be a step below RAW video but quality will be usable on production environments and on heavily detailed scenes.

I have not heard anything about a RAW module for SLR cameras. It seems far fetched since the CF module on these cameras just can't feed that kind of data for video even in sRAW. The only raw module I have seen specs on will be an option package on the upcoming line of video specific products in 2010.

The 5D MII 24p firmware seems to be on hold, it has been tested since the camera was a prototype and there is simply no reason why the 5D can't do 1080 24p or 720p 30.  The upcoming 1D Mark IV will have even better video than the 7D from the specs Ive heard about and this camera will not be released this year as speculated. So Canon doesn't
really need to release a new update for the 5D.   One interesting
thing that might cement this decision is that the rolling shutter on the 5D MII is much nastier in 24p and they probably thought it was just not good enough to release it.  If the patch is released expect heavy rolling shutter.

1D Mark IV what to look for based on part lists from suppliers and engineers:

-Completely new AF module akin to that on the 7D but with several times as many AF points. The tracking performance on this will be the best in the industry for many years. Video focus assist will be improved in speed five fold.

-Video: 1080p 24,30,25  720p 50, 60, SD with improved picture and audio control limits. Improved video processing.  If it has Digic V it will be a true binning downscale and a big jump in quality.

-No swivel screen, improved contrast and color gamut.

-12 fps at full 14bit. – this is not confirmed just rumored by staff outside of the project!

The 1D line is guarded air tight and even many engineers working on modules for the camera have not even seen the full spec list.


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  1. The RED is already being used by photographers. June cover shoot for Esquire Magazine was the first and many more since then, google it if you like.Indie directors are finding they can shoot features with the 5DII and an audio engineer friend of mine is even recording good sound to it. Video for still cameras is VERY exciting. 10fps… soon to be old news, how about 60fps.

  2. Now that was a cool read, I’ve actually learned some new stuff. Still doesn’t explain how the averaging for video is done, but now I have a solid reason to believe the skipping is done directly to the raw data.
    Thanks for taking the time to look it up :)

  3. Michael Slatte on

    Good news from Canon!

    I sent Canon Inc Sweden an e-mail asking about a possible firmware update that will add 24 and 25 fps to my 5D Mark ii. This is the answer I got today Oct 20. First translated into English. Then in Swedish.


    Hi Michael
    Canon Inc are working on such an firmware update.


    Hej Michael
    Canon Inc. arbetar på en sådan firmwareuppdatering.


    Hello! Half a year ago I bought 2 pcs 5D Mark II. Since then I’ve hoped for an upgrade of the firmware so I can shoot with 24 / 25 fps. I have repeatedly tried to get answers from Canon on this update will be or not. It is equally important to know if it is not going to be any update as if there will be one! This information is vital to me as I use the camera for professional purpose. Canon don’t gain anything having irritated customers, so therefore I ask you once again for a clarifying answer. Yours sincerely …


    Hej! Jag köpte 2 st 5D MK ii för sådär ett halvår sedan. Har
    ända sen dess hoppats på ett uppgradering av firmwaren så man kan skjuta
    med 24 / 25 fps. Har flera gånger försökt få svar från Canon om en sådan
    uppdatering kommer eller inte. Det är lika viktigt att veta om den inte
    kommer! Använder man kameran professionellt så är denna information
    avgörande. Canon vinner inget på irriterade kunder, så därför ber jag ännu
    en gång om ett klargörande svar. Vänlig hälsning .

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