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Xavier Edmilson Jose Abaya

I need your help on what DSLR to pick.

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Hi, My D7000 got stolen the other day. And next week I'll be starting on my filmschool.

So I want to ask you guys on what DSLR will I get. I'm getting DSLR because occasionally

I'm doing photo walks with my friends. I was eyeing for GH2 but unfortunately I can't find

any sellers here in my country.

 

 

Any thoughts on what to buy?

 

My Budget is $1000-$1200

 

Thanks in advance.

Edited by Xavier Edmilson Jose Abaya

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GH4 perhaps might be a good option. Else a used Canon 5D.

Though as I am assuming you're on Nikon glass, perhaps a D800. Keep in mind I have no idea the prices on those things especially in other countries.

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Hi Adrian, I appreciate your reply.

 

Yes I'm leaning towards a Used 5D Mk2, the price is around 1000 USD. A Used Mk3 is around 2000 USD (which is out of my budget). But my concern is:

 

1. Is 5D MK2 better than the GH3? (a Used GH3's price is around 1k USD.)

2. Is there will be a time that GH3 will surpassed the GH2? (Hacking)

3. The one holding me back in getting the 5d MK2 is the Aliasing problem in which is why others avoid it.

 

 

Yeah, I know those are little things but I'm more comfortable of buying the camera that last for me at least 3years.

Edited by Xavier Edmilson Jose Abaya

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I wouldn't buy a 5D2 at this point. In my view, they had their moment, but they've been significantly outperformed in a technical sense since then and I wouldn't put up with the softness and aliasing. If I already owned one, I'd be using it, but it wouldn't be something I'd buy into at this point.

 

A GH3 is considerably sharper and with less aliasing than a 5D2, but you don't quite get the same dynamic range. The 5Ds make subjectively very nice pictures. That's why people like them. Excellent work has been done with them. But they're not technically that good.

 

I'd save up for a GH4. Well, I am saving up for a GH4. Wide lens compatibility, 4K, 200 megabit built in recordings, uncompressed HDMI output on the basic camera and then an option to upgrade to SDI I/O later? I'm not sure there's any such thing as a perfect camera - it's still rolling shutter - but the specification is huge.

 

P

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I wouldn't buy a 5D2 at this point. In my view, they had their moment, but they've been significantly outperformed in a technical sense since then and I wouldn't put up with the softness and aliasing. If I already owned one, I'd be using it, but it wouldn't be something I'd buy into at this point.

 

A GH3 is considerably sharper and with less aliasing than a 5D2, but you don't quite get the same dynamic range. The 5Ds make subjectively very nice pictures. That's why people like them. Excellent work has been done with them. But they're not technically that good.

 

I'd save up for a GH4. Well, I am saving up for a GH4. Wide lens compatibility, 4K, 200 megabit built in recordings, uncompressed HDMI output on the basic camera and then an option to upgrade to SDI I/O later? I'm not sure there's any such thing as a perfect camera - it's still rolling shutter - but the specification is huge.

 

P

I just updated from GH3 to GH4, just testing the brand new body :lol:

Previously have shot very much material with 5D mark2.

 

FF sensor is nice to have but Panasonics are way ahead in video functionality and have much much better codec options.

GH4 has better codecs, more frame rates (including 96fps), worldcam options, better hdmi and some better thought functions over GH3. You can attach almost any lens to the MFT mount with simple and affordable adapters. Touchscreens can be a bit tough to use in some situations (rain/cold/dusty environment) though the orientable screen is a neck saver in low budget use :)

 

GH's are not that light sensitive, though. Canon 5D mark3 is much much better in low light than any of these cameras, with GH3 you don't want to use anything past 400 or 800 iso depending on image content, codec and use of the material. compared to 5D2, the codecs don't "brake up" that easily, I think, so noise is a bit less of an issue in low light situations. magic lantern for 5D2 helps a lot (including higher bitrate options and video meters) but can be a bit unreliable and the old camera body limits functionality quite much.

 

You will still have some aliasing with GH3 but 98% of time it's not an issue and the moire is usually not colored (compared to the green/yellowish moire of the 5D2) so it is much less distracting.

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oh, and the GH4 should have faster rolling shutter than the previous models from the series, also when compared to Canon 5D series. Less jell-o-cam effect for handheld shooting :lol:

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Thank you for your reply, guys.

 

The 5d2 is not on my list anymore, Thanks to your advice. I'm thinking of getting the GH4 because I think 4K is the Future.

But is the GH4's 4K feature too young? Is it practical to just get the GH3 and wait for a better 4k camera in the future or just get the GH4?

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You can wait forever for the perfect camera. Given the constant increase in people's expectations, it will never exist.

 

In my view, the purpose of 4K is mainly so as to be able to shoot better-looking HD, so no, in that sense, the fact that more pixels is a new feature on the GH line of cameras doesn't concern me. Expect 4K cameras to have slightly poorer dynamic range and/or noise floor than equivalent 2K devices (as with Blackmagic), but be aware that if you scale it down to 2K, you're probably going to get a fair amount of that difference back as the noise gets averaged out.

 

For comparison, the only other reasonable option in anything like the same price range is the Blackmagic 4K. It is global shutter, which is a very nice feature, and of course the onboard recording is far better - but it's also a big sensor, which isn't necessarily a plus.

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Not sure of pricing where you are but the GH1 is very cheap here and you could then use the money saved to get a blackmagic pocket camera too, or to save up for a gh4.

 

Freya

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GH1 is pretty decent for its vintage. The problems (which may not be insurmountable) are that the onboard recording is not brilliant, especially without increased-bitrate hacks, and the HDMI output has, to cut a very long story short, strange timing behaviours which may frustrate attempts to do external recording, if you aren't willing to postprocess your files for duplicate frames.

 

It also isn't as good noise-wise, especially in low light, and especially given the codec concerns, as later models. Not trying to dissuade anyone from buying it, just be aware.

 

P

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Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to find GH1 and GH2 here in the Philippines. The GH3 is around $1900 with 14-140mm. I am yet to find a GH3 body only. But I am guessing it is around $1400. So I narrowed down my choices to GH3 and GH4. My question is: is it worth the money if I go GH4 instead of GH3?

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GH1 is pretty decent for its vintage. The problems (which may not be insurmountable) are that the onboard recording is not brilliant, especially without increased-bitrate hacks, and the HDMI output has, to cut a very long story short, strange timing behaviours which may frustrate attempts to do external recording, if you aren't willing to postprocess your files for duplicate frames.

 

It also isn't as good noise-wise, especially in low light, and especially given the codec concerns, as later models. Not trying to dissuade anyone from buying it, just be aware.

 

P

 

I'm not sure why anyone would be using the GH1 or the GH2 without the bitrate hacks. They make a massive difference.

There are issues with using outboard recorders on both the GH1 and the GH2 and it may not be worth all the effort and trouble over recording internally with a high bitrate quite frankly. The HDMI output is poor on both.

 

Low light is where the GH2 pulls ahead. Both suffer from noise issues in low light but the GH2 can go about a stop further without issues and also features lower iso settings than the GH1 especially with the hack.

 

I think both cameras are fairly poor for video use without the hack. In any case I was more thinking of getting it primarily as a cheap stills camera in addition to the blackmagic pocket. There may be better choices for this tho such as perhaps a canon 50D which should shoot nice enough stills and allow you to shoot raw with the additional magic lantern software too but the gh1 and pocket are both M43.

 

Shame it's not an option. The GH1 sells for a fraction of the cost of a GH2 over here and they are somewhat common.

 

Freya

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Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to find GH1 and GH2 here in the Philippines. The GH3 is around $1900 with 14-140mm. I am yet to find a GH3 body only. But I am guessing it is around $1400. So I narrowed down my choices to GH3 and GH4. My question is: is it worth the money if I go GH4 instead of GH3?

Depends on what kind of material you shoot…

I think the price difference of the camera bodies (here in Finland about 999€ for GH3 and 1500€ for GH4 including VAT) is quite well compared to the extra features you get by purchasing the newer body.

(the camera housing itself seems to be actually EXACTLY THE SAME, only electronics and the sensor differ. I'm having really hard time to tell by a quick look which one is which :blink:

There is a locking button for the shooting mode wheel in GH4, that's the only difference I can find :ph34r: )

 

With GH4 you can shoot for example all-intra 200Mbps in 50 and 60fps and up to 96fps in long gop 100Mbps mode, all Full HD.

I think the 4K feature is most useful if you need a crash cam or quadcopter footage for a bigger production or shoot stock footage for future needs (though less compressed material would be more useful for that purpose).

 

Most of the people don't even have displays or tv sets which could playback 4K and even then, you'd need hell of a big TV to be able to see the difference in normal use without ultimate pixel peeping and magnifying glass (for example that 84" UHD television which was on display in the electronics store where I purchased the GH from would be useful. Price tag was nearly 9000 euros :lol: )

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made some tests with the 4K recording function. The codec seems to hold up quite well in scenes where there is only gentle movement and when you can shoot at ISO 200 for very low noise. Sometimes it can even somewhat manage 400 ISO but that seems to be about it. You can downscale the 4k to hd, 2k or 2.5k in post to smoothen some of the compression artifacts and to get very sharp hd image. The scaling is very time consuming, though

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@Phil

I think the difference is about 500 to 700USD

 

 

@Freya

 

Is the 50d better than the 60d? (video wise)

 

@aapo

 

Yeah, I am planning to shoot in 4k and down scale it. Therre are features of the GH4 that are quite nice and tempting lol. But I don't know if the price difference is worth it.

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Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to find GH1 and GH2 here in the Philippines. The GH3 is around $1900 with 14-140mm. I am yet to find a GH3 body only. But I am guessing it is around $1400. So I narrowed down my choices to GH3 and GH4. My question is: is it worth the money if I go GH4 instead of GH3?

 

If it's a matter of 'wait' a bit, and get the GH-4, I'd go with the GH-4. I've been impressed with my GH-1, and the GH-2-4, have improved on the design from the reports of others.

 

Panasonic even was 'forced' to show the GH series at NAB, National Association of Broadcasters, in some sense, due to the number of 'pros' and 'semipros' using the camera. Canon of course has had their DSLR line at NAB for years...

 

I've not hacked my GH-1, mainly due to my 'fear' of bricking my unit. I think these days the hacks are stable, and others have been pretty successful in their use.

 

Also, when I hear the Canon 5DMKII/III I also hear 'Magic Lantern' firmware package, which 'improves' the camera from what Canon produces.

 

I have a Nikon D600 that I bought the Wife, but I've not tested it as much for such things as 'effective' ISO settings, or how good the video measures up even to compare with my GH-1. The Wife only shoots stills, and can use 'raw' image files, so moving pictures is not really a big issue for her.

 

Philosophically I don't worry about 'full 35mm still frame' vs MFT, APS-C, DX sized sensors... 'shallow DoF' is not my fetish... on the contrary, I tend more to deep focus.

Edited by jeclark2006

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@Phil

I think the difference is about 500 to 700USD

 

 

@Freya

 

Is the 50d better than the 60d? (video wise)

 

@aapo

 

Yeah, I am planning to shoot in 4k and down scale it. Therre are features of the GH4 that are quite nice and tempting lol. But I don't know if the price difference is worth it.

 

Sorry Xavier, I only just saw your posting. Not sure if you are looking to shoot raw but here is a graph of magic lantern support for the various cameras that might be helpful:

 

Twitter-_-autoexec_bin_-Updated-raw-char

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I appreciate the replies guys..

 

I just found out that Panasonic doesn't have a retailer here in the Philippines (causing them to become super overpriced). So I I just have to wait a couple of months to be the GH4 and GH4 become available. Luckily, my school let's you borrow the a camera and lights.

Edited by Xavier Edmilson Jose Abaya

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Then borrow the school's equipment until you graduate!

 

Don't buy gear you don't absolutely need, especially camera equipment.

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Phil's right. The only caveat is to buy when the deal is too good to pass up. For example, if a friend is fed up with film, and offers you a 16SR3 package for a dollar, buy it!

 

If you're chasing the gear trend, that's bad. Be patient.

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I appreciate the replies guys..

 

I just found out that Panasonic doesn't have a retailer here in the Philippines (causing them to become super overpriced). So I I just have to wait a couple of months to be the GH4 and GH4 become available. Luckily, my school let's you borrow the a camera and lights.

 

There are a number of 'low end' Canons that I have seen people use, there's the Rebel T2i/550D or the newer T3i/600D type which may have more retailers in your area.

 

The main thing is to shoot... and from what I've seen of these low end Canons, you could produce something you wouldn't be embarrased to show anyone...

 

When I started shooting 4x5 stills I could only afford a 50 year old camera, and lens of equal vintage, that was 40 years ago... I still have the lens... The camera... well, it ough to have been put in a museum... but as it is, I sold it to someone else when I upgraded to a new Cambo, even that was years ago...

Edited by jeclark2006

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You're lucky your school gives you plenty of access to equipment.

But even so... I feel it is important to have a camera of your *own*. As when you own one you get to know it so much deeper, than one that you just rent or book out.

So I'd suggest you pick up perhaps a cheap Panasonic GH1, they are going second hand on eBay for under US$200!

*NOTHING* in this price range can come close to matching what the hacked GH1 can do! (heck, I have used both a GH1 and a 5DmkII and I much prefer the GH1 for filming with!)

This way you then have a very cheap camera of your own to use throughout filmschool. And only after you graduate, go splurge out on a nicer camera. How long is your course? We might be up to the Panasonic GH6 by the time you graduate!

 

The other alternative, is go for a camera which is a bit of a midway point in price and performance between a GH4 and a GH1. The top choices would be: Nikon D5200, Sony A6000, or Panasonic G6 (a new G6 is in my opinion a much better value option than a used GH2 which goes for about the same price).

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