Zero Zero Robotics V-Coptr Falcon – World’s First V-Shaped Bi-Copter

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on Zero Zero Robotics V-Coptr Falcon – World’s First V-Shaped Bi-Copter
Jan 222020
 

Zero Zero Robotics rencently announced their new unique-looking drone: the V-Coptr Falcon. Indeed, this v-shaped bi-copter doesn’t look like your traditional quad-copter drone, because it only features two motors and two propellers. The V-Coptr Falcon can fly for up to 50 minutes with a transmission distance of 7km, it can avoid obstacles, and it features a 4K 3-axis stabilized camera. Let’s take a closer look at it!

Zero Zero Robotics

Zero Zero Robotics is a Chinese company that launched its first product – the Hover 2 – via Kickstarter about a year ago. The campaign for this autonomous drone was a huge success, and they raised over $1M quickly. However, to this day, all backers didn’t receive their pledge yet.

In a surprising move, the team at Zero Zero Robotics announced the launch of a new drone, the V-Coptr Falcon.

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A Review of the Sony FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS Lens

 Gear  Comments Off on A Review of the Sony FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS Lens
Jan 222020
 

We would all love to have the absolutely astounding supertelephoto primes that the pros use, but with prices well into five figures, they are simply not in the cards for most of us. Luckily, in the last few years, companies have been releasing better and better long zooms at more affordable prices. This great review takes a look at the Sony FE 200-600mm f/5.6-6.3 G OSS lens.

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A Review of the Panasonic S1’s After 10 Months

 Gear  Comments Off on A Review of the Panasonic S1’s After 10 Months
Jan 092020
 

The Panasonic S1 is a nicely balanced stills and video camera that brings with it quite a few top-shelf features all packaged in a rugged, versatile, and well-designed body. This great video takes a look at how the camera has held up after using it for almost a year. 

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Insta360 Unveils the One R Modular Action Cam ‘Co-Engineered’ with Leica

 Action cams, Gear  Comments Off on Insta360 Unveils the One R Modular Action Cam ‘Co-Engineered’ with Leica
Jan 082020
 

Insta360 has just revealed the (painfully) teased Insta360 One R “adaptive” action camera. The modular creation was co-engineered with Leica, and features a “unique interchangeable lens design” that lets you swap between modules for standard 4K, 360° video, 5.3K with a 1-inch sensor, and more.

It’s hard to see the Insta360 One R as anything other than a more versatile version of the GoPro Hero 8. While GoPro is showing off their Media Mods with attachable mics and lights at CES 2020, Insta360 just released an even more versatile creation that combines a “core” processing unit with a bunch of very useful modules.

“The concept is simple — one battery, one processor and a selection of quick-swapping lens Mods,” explains Insta360. “In an instant, ONE R transforms from a dual-lens 360 shooter to a standard action cam.”

Here’s the One R intro video just released by Insta360: 

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Nikon Z 6 and Atomos Ninja V ProRes RAW Recording Option – First Look

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on Nikon Z 6 and Atomos Ninja V ProRes RAW Recording Option – First Look
Jan 062020
 

The Nikon Z 6 and Z 7 have been around for quite some time but now it’s getting a new life. Something that will greatly elevate its performance thanks to the collaboration with Atomos. While Nikon is bringing to the table a full frame sensor camera, 12 bit RAW output via HDMI and a flat picture profile recording option (N Log), Atomos is contributing to this duo its external monitor/recorder expertise together with the built-in Apple’s ProRes RAW 12 bit recording option. There are many “industry firsts” in this exciting combination, including transferring the information between the camera and monitor/recorder on a consumer HDMI protocol interface. Now, openly speaking, is offering full frame, up to 4K, 12 bit ProRes RAW external recording option, enough to bring Nikon back to the center of attention of the aspiring filmmakers and content creators? Please read on.

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SIRUI 50mm Anamorphic Lens Review and Sample Footage

 Gear  Comments Off on SIRUI 50mm Anamorphic Lens Review and Sample Footage
Dec 202019
 

The new SIRUI 50mm anamorphic lens is promising to revolutionize a territory that, up until now, was out of reach for many. For $700 this lens sounds too good to be true, so I took it for a short spin and I’m happy to share my thoughts with you guys. 

SIRUI 50mm anamorphic lens on a FUJIFILM X-T3. Image credit: cinema5D

Earlier this year during IBC, we had the chance to talk to Sonny from SIRUI who was kind enough to share with us some details about their upcoming 50mm f/1.8 1.33x anamorphic lens, and while the idea of developing such lens was great, I was a bit skeptical in what the end product would look like or better said, how well it would perform optically-wise. Fast forward to the present time, and I have this lens on my desk. Now, before proceeding to talk about the lens, let me take a quick step back.

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The Most Unfair Camera Comparison Ever: iPhone vs $250K TV Camera

 Apple, Cinematography  Comments Off on The Most Unfair Camera Comparison Ever: iPhone vs $250K TV Camera
Dec 182019
 

You’d have to look long and hard to find a more absurd camera comparison than this. After putting together a very useful video that explains why broadcast TV cameras are so huge and expensive, YouTuber Zebra Zone pit this $250,000 setup against its most obvious rival… the iPhone 11 Pro.

As a quick refresher, the broadcast “camera” that is being used is a combination of several very expensive elements:

  • BlackMagic Ursa Broadcast Camera – $3,000
  • Fujinon UA107 Box Lens – $212,000
  • Tripod and Fluid Head – $20,000
  • Remote Control Handles – $9,000
  • Camera-to-Lens Adapter – $7,000
  • Monitor – $1,800
  • Fiber Optic Transmission Module – $3,000

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Canon C500 Mark II Low-Light Test & 6K Raw Clip to Download

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on Canon C500 Mark II Low-Light Test & 6K Raw Clip to Download
Dec 122019
 

Our friend Ollie Kenchington used to be a regular cinema5D writer until recently, but since his day job at his production company KORRO is keeping him extremely busy, he is now an irregular contributor to the site. In this post, he tells us about his first experiences with the new Canon C500 Mark II in low light. Full disclosure: Ollie is not a Canon Ambassador, though he does occasionally do paid work for them as a trainer/speaker.

Back in September, at IBC, I had the opportunity to have a play with some 6K raw footage captured with the C500 Mark II. It occurred to me then that it would be great if more people could have the same opportunity to experiment with this powerful codec. I therefore proposed to Canon that they send me a unit prior to release, with the intention of capturing content that could be made freely available for interested users to download and play with at home. I finally got the chance to do just that last week.

6K Raw Demo

You can see the short sequence I cut together from the 6K raw footage here:

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SteadXP+ First Look Review – A Promising Camera Stabilization System

 Gear  Comments Off on SteadXP+ First Look Review – A Promising Camera Stabilization System
Dec 122019
 

Five years ago, a little company from France called SteadXP shook the Internet with a “game-changing” small box and stabilization technology made for GoPro and DSLR/Mirrorless cameras. This box attaches to your camera and records all the motion data of your camera so that you can stabilize your footage in post-production. The concept was revolutionary back in the days. Nowadays, with action cameras that feature in-body image stabilization that works just as well – if not better –, SteadXP is trying to move to the cinema market with SteadXP+. But is this product and technology still relevant? Let’s take a closer look at it in this hands-on review.

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Review: Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 Di III RXD Lens for Sony Full-Frame Cameras

 Gear  Comments Off on Review: Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 Di III RXD Lens for Sony Full-Frame Cameras
Dec 052019
 

The Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 lens is less than half the price of Sony’s 24-70mm f/2.8 GM. Does this lens live up to the hype?

I had a chance to finally use the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 Di III RXD which was notoriously backordered for months and months after its release. Surprisingly, the lens’ performance blew past my expectations, especially when it came to sharpness. A couple things I never really paid attention to before testing were its weight and size, but it really was impressive to hold in my hands and feel that difference. It does not seem like a full frame f/2.8 zoom lens.

What I Liked

  • The Tamron is more affordable than Sony’s 24-70mm f/2.8 GM lens.
  • It’s very sharp and the resolution holds up on the 61-megapixel Sony a7R IV.
  • Slim and light for its class; has a 67mm filter size.
  • The continuous autofocus kept pace with Real-time Eye AF in a studio setting.
  • Some level of weather resistance. Not sure if it’s the lens mount’s rubber gasket making a good seal, but it’s a notably tight fit to get on and off the camera body. I guess if it’s doing its job, that’s a good thing.

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Panasonic S1 & Canon FD lenses – Full Frame, 10-bit Recording Kit Under $3500

 Gear  Comments Off on Panasonic S1 & Canon FD lenses – Full Frame, 10-bit Recording Kit Under $3500
Dec 022019
 

Are you playing with the thought to enter into the 10-bit full frame filmmaking world but think it’s prohibitively expensive? Here is a sub $3500 suggestion. If you are willing to invest money and time, the combination of working with the Panasonic S1 equipped with Canon’s FD lenses is fun and a good reason to collect some older items too.

Panasonic S1 with the Canon FD 35mm f2 lens. Image credit: Gunther Machu

If you are like me, an enthusiast hobbyist who is digging the full frame look but don’t want to go back to 8-bit codecs,  then I’m sure we are sharing the same dilemma. I’ve started filming 10 years ago with a Panasonic GH1 and later moved to the original BMPCC camera but the full frame “look” always fascinated me and 8 vs 10-bit became a deal breaker when choosing my next camera.

My Wish List When Considering a Camera

  • a full frame sensor camera to get this creamy shallow depth of field with fast primes
  • a robust 4K 4:2:2 10-bit internal codec
  • the cam has a LOG image picture profile that provides good dynamic range and is flexible enough for grading in post
  • in body image (sensor) stabilization  (IBIS) would be great
  • the audio department should provide good sound quality with a headphone output, of course
  • a good viewfinder and/or screen is mandatory
  • decent battery life
  • lenses should cover wides and moderate tele and should be fast (below f4, ideally f2) – otherwise you would defy the purpose to go for full frame
  • in addition, the lenses should provide robust mechanics, a buttery smooth focus throw to allow for precise manual focus adjustment with hard stops at close and infinity focus
  • I don’t like messing with rigs, external recorders, HDMI cables, and all the auxiliary stuff and need a compact footprint
  • As a hobbyist, I just don’t want to spend more than $3500 all in all

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SIGMA fp LOG Picture Profile and RAW Output Recording via HDMI Coming Next Year

 Gear  Comments Off on SIGMA fp LOG Picture Profile and RAW Output Recording via HDMI Coming Next Year
Nov 182019
 

During Inter BEE 2019, we had the chance to talk with SIGMA about the upcoming firmware update for the fp camera. We’ve been told that a firmware update will bring exciting new video features such as in-camera playback of cinemaDNG footage, and something that a lot of shooters are waiting for: a LOG picture profile and RAW output video recording via HDMI. Let’s take a closer look at it!


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FilmConvert Camera Pack for Panasonic LUMIX S1 and S1H Now Available

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on FilmConvert Camera Pack for Panasonic LUMIX S1 and S1H Now Available
Nov 072019
 

FilmConvert has announced the addition of a new camera pack for the Panasonic S1 and S1H cameras. If you are a FilmConvert Pro or FilmConvert Nitrate user, you can download these new profiles for free. Let’s take a closer look


FilmConvert
 Camera Pack for Panasonic LUMIX S1 and S1H

The Panasonic LUMIX S1 and LUMIX S1H – the version for filmmakers – are currently on fire! Indeed, the S1H is the first Netflix approved mirrorless camera. Also, if you want to learn more about the S1H, you can take a look at our complete S1H review by clicking here and our lab test by clicking here.

FilmConvertS1S1H_Featured

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Leica SL2 – 47MP Full-Frame Sensor with 5K/30P and 4K/60P 10-Bit Video Internally

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Leica SL2 – 47MP Full-Frame Sensor with 5K/30P and 4K/60P 10-Bit Video Internally
Nov 072019
 

Leica has announced its new L-Mount full-frame mirrorless camera. The Leica SL2 features a 47MP full-frame CMOS sensor with 5-axis image stabilization. It is capable of recording 5K video at up to 30fps, 4K video at up to 60fps, and FullHD video at up to 180fps, all in 10-bit H.264. The camera features a high-resolution EVF, full-size HDMI port, two 3.5mm jack ports for headphones and microphone, and an all-metal magnesium body. It will be available from November 21st, 2019 for $5,995.

Leica SL2 full-frame mirrorless camera. Source: Leica

It has already been four years since the German premium brand introduced its Leica SL full-frame mirrorless camera. Our Leica SL review and Lab test articles from 2015 are a good reminder of its video capabilities. The newly announced Leica SL2 promises to bring even more video-oriented features. Let’s take a look!

Leica SL2 – 47MP Full-Frame Stabilized Sensor

The new Leica SL2 features a 47.3MP 3:2 full-frame CMOS sensor and Maestro III image processor, which enables up to 20 fps continuous stills shooting with an electronic shutter, 10 fps with a mechanical shutter, and 6 fps with a mechanical shutter and AF-C, for up to 78 consecutive DNG files with a color depth of 14 bits per RGB channel. The sensor features a 5-axis sensor-shift image stabilization system, which minimizes the appearance of camera shakes when shooting handheld.

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A First Look at the Fujifilm X-Pro3 Camera

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on A First Look at the Fujifilm X-Pro3 Camera
Oct 292019
 

The X-Pro3 is the latest camera from Fujifilm in their highly lauded X Series, and with it comes a highly interesting design with lots of features and power to spare. Is this unique camera the right one for you? This excellent first look video will give you a pretty comprehensive overview that should help you decide. 

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Panasonic S1H Review – Is it the Best Full Frame Mirrorless Camera for Filmmakers yet?

 Cinematography, Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Panasonic S1H Review – Is it the Best Full Frame Mirrorless Camera for Filmmakers yet?
Oct 242019
 

The Panasonic S1H is now finally available for purchasing and we took it for a spin in order to put it through its paces. If you are in a rush and have no time to continue reading, here is my conclusion first: Currently it is the best mirrorless camera that can shoot video in the market. Of course, no filming device is perfect, but any manufacturer who would like to produce something even better will have to work harder to achieve this. Ready to dive into details? Keep on reading. 

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Zhiyun Weebill-S Compact Gimbal for Mirrorless and DSLR Cameras Announced

 Gear  Comments Off on Zhiyun Weebill-S Compact Gimbal for Mirrorless and DSLR Cameras Announced
Oct 172019
 

After the massive success of the Kickstarter campaign for their SMOOTH-Q2 smartphone gimbal, Zhiyun is back with a new gimbal for DSLR and Mirrorless cameras: the Zhiyun Weebill-S. This compact and robust handheld gimbal is a follow-up to the previous Weebill LAB that was announced at Photokina 2018. Let’s take a closer look at it!

Zhiyun Weebill-S Design

Zhiyun has just announced their new handheld gimbal for mirrorless and DSLR cameras: the Zhiyun Weebill-S. This fresh stabilizer is a follow-up to the previous Weebill LAB, but it is not a replacement. Overall, the one-of-his-kind design is similar between the two. If it works, don’t fix it.

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A Comprehensive Review of the Sony a7R IV

 Gear  Comments Off on A Comprehensive Review of the Sony a7R IV
Oct 142019
 
A Comprehensive Review of the Sony a7R IV

The Sony a7R IV brings the company’s latest innovations and improvements to the popular line of high-resolution full frame cameras. Along with its new sensor come a bevy of new upgrades and refinements to existing features, making it an interesting choice for a lot of photographers. This comprehensive and thorough review takes a deep look at the camera to help you decide if it is right for you. 

Coming to you from Maarten Heilbron, this excellent review takes a look at the Sony a7R IV. The a7R IV features lots of upgrades over the a7R III, the most prominent being the new 61-megapixel sensor, an upgrade of almost 50% over its predecessor. Along with the new sensor comes a better EVF, more ergonomic grip, more powerful autofocus, better weather-sealing, and more. The capability to fire at 10 fps at 61 megapixels is certainly a boon for many photographers, particularly wildlife photographers, who retain vast cropping capabilities with enough speed to capture animals in action, all supplemented by the capable autofocus system. 

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Sony a9 II Announced – More Speed for Pro Photographers, Same Video Specs

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Sony a9 II Announced – More Speed for Pro Photographers, Same Video Specs
Oct 072019
 

Sony just announced the a9 II full-frame E-mount mirrorless camera. Aimed at professional sports photographers and photojournalistst, the Sony a9 II is all about speed. It has the same 24.2 MP CMOS sensor as the original a9. The camera is capable of 20fps continous blackout-free stills shooting with AF and AE tracking with electronic shutter (up to 10fps with mechanical shutter). The new a9 II also features better in-body image stabilization, weather resistance, and gigabit ethernet port for high speed communication. Available in October for $4,500 (€5,400).

Sony a9 II

Sony a9 sits on top of the alpha series of mirrorless cameras. It is aimed at professional photographers, who does not require the maximum possible resolution (for those Sony has the a7R series), but who require speed and other useful features (for example sports photographers and photojournalists). The first generation Sony a9 was presented during NAB 2017, so it has been more than two years. Today Sony announced the a9 II. What are its specs and innovations?

Sony a9 II – Speed Above All

As I mentioned above, the a9 series is all about speed. Sony a9 II (full model name: ILCE-9M2) features blackout-free continuous shooting at up to 20 frames per second (with electronic shutter) with Auto Focus and Auto Exposure tracking, 60 times per second AF/AE calculations. This applies for 1/125 sec. or higher shutter speed. In AF-C mode the maximum continuous frame rate will depend on the shooting mode and lens used. The number of AF calculations will depend on the lens used. A software update may be required for some lenses.

The high speed shooting can last for up to 361 JPEG images or 239 compressed RAW images (in “Hi” continuous shooting mode with UHS-II memory card), with no viewfinder blackout, allowing the photographer to follow the subject and action with no interruption to the EVF during picture taking. For times when mechanical shutter is preferred or required, the new A9 II has been improved to shoot at up to 10 fps, about 2x the speed of the A9.

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Magic Cinema ViewFinder – Free Director’s Viewfinder App for iOS & Android

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on Magic Cinema ViewFinder – Free Director’s Viewfinder App for iOS & Android
Oct 022019
 

Magic Cinema ViewFinder is an application for iOS and Android devices that makes location scouting a lot easier. Although there are already a couple of apps in the market that do the same thing, the Magic Cinema ViewFinder is free. Let’s take a closer look at it!

Location Scouting with Your Smartphone

Back in the days, I used to take stills with a point-and-shoot compact camera while doing location scouting. Don’t get me wrong; it’s still relevant today. But, we now all have in our pocket a smartphone that features a capable camera, and that can launch dozens of apps to make your life easier. I use tools like Sun Surveyor to know where the sun will be at any given hour. Also, Green Screener is an excellent app if the job requires green screen lighting. But one of the most useful to me is Cadrage, which is a viewfinder tool for location scouting.

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