“What’s In the Bag”- HD video with DSLR: The Full Monty!

In the 2nd part of this special HD video with a DSLR , “What’s in the Bag” segment, photographer Chris Weeks shows you the whole rig set up and ready to go.
Plus there is the all important sound tip in there that you can’t miss.

Here is the honest truth about a couple of things:
The new generation of DSLR’s with HD vid capabilities do have what some may consider, limitations.

A. They produce a compressed video file, in H.264 codec, which should be converted to ProRes 422 for working in Final Cut Pro.
A little like taking a compressed jpeg and converting it. One day they will be as RAW and uncompressed as your still files. Soon we hope.

B. The native sound is terrible. With a mic next to everything (lens focusing, fingers changing f/ stops) you pick up a ton of unwanted noise. Best to record sound separate from the camera, and sync it in post. Chris shows a great inexpensive tool for doing that in the video. remember, the Vince Laforet now famous Canon video had no sound other than an added music track. It’s called recording MOS or mit out sound. Really. Coined by director Otto Preminger.

C. As great as still camera lenses are for stills, cinema lenses are best for shooting vid. Smoother f/ or T/stops transitions,as they are called in cinema, and a larger barrel to hit focus with. The reason all of the focus rings are so large is to give you a bigger area to get to your focus correctly. With cinema lenses, yo have a greater chance of hiring a film camera assistant who can really help you.

D. The output of a camera, like a Canon 5D, while shooting is NOT HD! Yes, it is recording in HD, but you will see that only in playback. Using an outboard monitor, which we recommend, is great for focusing (beats the tiny camera monitors) and then HD playback to check picture.

E. Get ready to open your wallets as the additional gear to get some good results will be pricey. But it’s here, and the working photojournalists are being asked to step it up. And we’ll venture a guess that the wedding photog industry will be the first to fully adapt.

F. As we are all still discovering things in Photoshop, even though we have a great workflow and know what we want to do and how to get there, get ready to include Final Cut Pro or, at a minimum, iMovie or the new Photoshop Premiere 8. Make some room in the brain pan, because there are lots of new thing that you’re about to learn.

But for now, check out the rig and the awesome sync sound tip for Chris Weeks:

We’ll be showing you some additional way to go, in the coming weeks and some specific articles on pieces of gear and what to look for.

We thank Chris for sharing his knowledge and research on all of this.It’s always best to hear from a pro who uses their gear to get the money. Maybe now, after seeing what he uses, you may want to go back and see some of his videos we posted.

As a commercial producer for many years, I hope to bring a real perspective to this subject, and share gained knowledge on the new technology available to you as a photographer.

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