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Video equipment

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Old Tuesday 10th February 2009, 02:57   #1
sjahanmi
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Question Video equipment

Hi,

First of all, sorry if I posted this message on the wrong section.

As of now I am into a bit of Bird Photography. I am more interested in Videography. I would like to know your feedbacks on which camera to buy for Videography, mainly birds. I prefer a camera, pref. High Definition, with very good Zoom. Hope to hear from you guys.

Regards

Shah
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Old Thursday 12th February 2009, 19:21   #2
Claymore
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjahanmi View Post
Hi,

First of all, sorry if I posted this message on the wrong section.

As of now I am into a bit of Bird Photography. I am more interested in Videography. I would like to know your feedbacks on which camera to buy for Videography, mainly birds. I prefer a camera, pref. High Definition, with very good Zoom. Hope to hear from you guys.

Regards

Shah
Hi Shah,
I have a canon xl2 and recently got an adaptor for it so i can use my bigma on it but having seen Romy's video taken with the new Canon 5Dmk2 SLR I feel like throwing it away! LoL one of the main things to remember is a very solid tripod etc as there's nothing worse than watching a wobbly video clip (like my own attempts)LoL
Cheers
Brian
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Old Sunday 22nd February 2009, 00:12   #3
Bob Thompson
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Shah,

The Canon 5D mark 2 is a very good camera but one draw back maybe in video mode you can only see the picture on the rear LCD screen and in bright sunlight this is a little difficult.

If you already have a collection of Canon long lens, I would suggest you look at a dedicated Canon camcorder, there are several that take interchangeable lens.

IMHO the best forum for wildlife videography is at http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/under-water-over-land/

Remember that the canon 5DM2 records to CF card and the Canon HD camcorders to mini DV tape, tape is a very cheap way of storing your library of shots.

Bob Thompson
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PS: The secret to any good wildlife photography is a strong tripod and good knowledge of your subject
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Old Saturday 14th March 2009, 04:03   #4
Romy Ocon
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If you're shooting Canon and already have birding lenses, the 5D2 takes HD video with excellent quality. The 1080p video (2 MP) is downressed from a 21 MP capture, and this is equivalent to resizing to about 33%. Hence you can easily use a 2x TC on a birding lens with minimal IQ loss because this will be mitigated by the downressing. Another upside is you can take both stills and video with the same equipment, no need to bring additional gear in long trips or hikes.

Note though that there's no manual exposure control with the 5D2's movie mode, albeit there are work-arounds for this. Also, you must be adept at manual focus for most filming situations.

Here's a couple of recent bird footages I've taken with the 5D2 + birding lenses:


Striated Grassbird: http://exposureroom.com/romyocon_grassbird2


Pied Fantail: http://exposureroom.com/romyocon_piedfantail

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Old Saturday 14th March 2009, 08:35   #5
Bob Thompson
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Romy,

I love the Fantail conducting the music with its tail. Nice job with the filming, I am yet to try my 5DM2 on birds

Bob
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Old Saturday 14th March 2009, 17:52   #6
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Romy,

Thanks again for astounding us with the quality of your video clips. Do you find that the Sennheiser microphone is much improvement on the 5D2's inbuilt microphone?
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Old Sunday 15th March 2009, 01:04   #7
Romy Ocon
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Romy,

I love the Fantail conducting the music with its tail. Nice job with the filming, I am yet to try my 5DM2 on birds

Bob

Thanks, Bob! The 5D2's HD video ergonomics leaves a lot to be desired, but the video quality makes up for its difficulty of use. :)



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Romy,

Thanks again for astounding us with the quality of your video clips. Do you find that the Sennheiser microphone is much improvement on the 5D2's inbuilt microphone?

Thanks, Mike.

The Sennheiser MKE 400 is a very compact and effective solution. I always use it when shooting from the vehicle (like in the grassbird footage), and it doesn't interfere at all in my stills/video capture workflow.

It's much better than the on-board mic in at least two ways - its directional pick up tones down audio away from the bird, and the sound of IS and other camera noise is more insulated. The AAA battery lasts very long, I still haven't changed the first one even after shooting over 500 GB of footage.

On the downside, the 5D2's AGC implementation produces a noticeable hiss on this mic (and on some brands/models too). It's a breeze to profile and remove in audio post process though. I'm not counting on it, but if Canon gives us manual exposure control via firmware, I hope they'll also include manual audio control. In addition, the MKE 400 is not as good as other popular mics in its class in the low frequency region. This is not an issue for me because most bird calls fall within the high and mid-frequencies.



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Old Sunday 15th March 2009, 07:49   #8
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Romy,

Thanks for your informative reply. Microphone compatibility is a problem I have with my camcorder.
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