Thursday, August 6, 2009

Canon 5D MKII in use

Over the past few days, I've had the opportunity to work with the Canon 5D Mark 2. I chose to use it, because the form factor of the camera was small, and the project was light. I used it in two different situations, first a welcome video for a new clients web site, and the other run and gun interviews in various locations.

The welcome video was in a controlled environment, and the 5D along with a Beachtek DXA-5D and shot gun mic was the gear used. It's very easy to use the video option on the 5D, pretty straight forward, and the results are very good. I edited the footage with FCP, and all went well. This was shot using tungsten lighting.

The run and gun interviews were a bit more problematic. I did not have one subject I had two or three, and the focus became an issue. While for most of the interviews, I used the AF-ON button to focus, but for other shots, I found I had to manually focus, and without a larger monitor, it's very difficult. Also in a controlled environment I did not have a problem with the length of a take, if I did, I could just do another take, but with interviews, if it ran over 12 minutes, the camera would stop recording without notice, leaving me with gaps in the interview.

For lighting I used the Lite Panels Micro Pro. This is a very cool device, but again, it has limitations. It runs on 6 AA batteries, and there is no battery level indicator to let you know you are running low, it just slowly dims, and the color temp changes. There is a option for AC adapter, but the rental house did not have one. The light throw is not far and the angle of light spread is not that wide, so you need to be close to your subject, and they need to be close together, but it is light in weight, and convenient.

There is no histogram on the 5D in video mode, as on a RED, and you pretty much judge your exposure by the on camera LCD. Not shooting RAW is a bummer, but the images look pretty good. I'll post more as I finish my editing.


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