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Canon C300 Mark II Review

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Yes I did shoot the second picture and yes we did grade that show slightly, but generally speaking, that's how it looked in camera with only a very small tweak.

 

Was it shot in 4K Raw?

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Was it shot in 4K Raw?

 

 

Actually it was shot XAVC iframe 410Mbps 4k with REC709 LUT. Tho funny enough when I threw the clips into DaVinci they didn't have a LUT applied like they did in Avid. So clearly the LUT was a metadata LUT which worked great actually. I'm not sure if the Blackmagic cameras do the same thing with the updated software my pocket camera does not.

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Actually it was shot XAVC iframe 410Mbps 4k with REC709 LUT. Tho funny enough when I threw the clips into DaVinci they didn't have a LUT applied like they did in Avid. So clearly the LUT was a metadata LUT which worked great actually. I'm not sure if the Blackmagic cameras do the same thing with the updated software my pocket camera does not.

 

I know very little about codecs, but was it XF-AVC? 10 bit? The C200 just had a firmware update that added XF-AVC to it but it's like 8-bit or some nonsense.

 

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I know very little about codecs, but was it XF-AVC? 10 bit? The C200 just had a firmware update that added XF-AVC to it but it's like 8-bit or some nonsense.

 

The c200 is an 8 bit 4:2:0 camera like my iPhone.

 

The c300II is a 10 bit 4:2:2 camera like the blackmagic cameras.

 

Im not aware of the c200 being able to capture in 10 bit because it would be a direct competitor to the c300II if it did. If it does, im sure its not an iFrame codec which means you need to really transcode before doing any post work meaning you need a fast computer.

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The c200 is an 8 bit 4:2:0 camera like my iPhone.

 

The c300II is a 10 bit 4:2:2 camera like the blackmagic cameras.

 

Im not aware of the c200 being able to capture in 10 bit because it would be a direct competitor to the c300II if it did. If it does, im sure its not an iFrame codec which means you need to really transcode before doing any post work meaning you need a fast computer.

 

It captures 12-bit raw. But, it doesn't have 10-bit anything. It's like they forgot to put something between the 12-bit Raw light and the 8-bit Mp4.

 

Here's an interesting camera test. What makes it hard to judge the quality is that they put this truly beautiful woman in it, so it automatically makes the footage beautiful, hehe.

 

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Just remember, the 12 bit files won't be editable in real time, they require proxy files. :(

 

Really? I edit 12-bit DNG from the Mini 4K in real time all the time...maybe the Canon Raw Light is different since it's not an image sequence...

 

EDIT: Wait, actually I don't, I use the "generate optimised media" thing...doh.

Edited by Samuel Berger

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Cinema DNG is native to Premiere, Final Cut X and DaVinci, so it works flawlessly. The Canon Raw is JPEG based, so it doesn't have hardware acceleration unless you have software that can manage it with your GPU.

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The C300 Mark II setup for a feature looks very simple. Look at these guys:

 

post-10433-0-61016300-1523857231_thumb.jpg

 

 

No Frankenstein rig full of weird parts coming out everywhere. Even the lens looks like a simple Canon 70-200.

 

I don't know what tripod that is, but looks like overkill for such a small, lightweight camera. I wonder what external recorder they're using. And of course, why they'd replace the factory top-handle with that.

 

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I'm sure you will make a good choice on a camera. Remember, they're all just little boxes that record the focused light from a lens.....Whether you rent or buy, just get into the filmmaking again and enjoy the creative process. Making a good thing is fun.

Edited by Jon O'Brien
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Heh, that's the movie I worked on, small world! hahaha

 

Good, then maybe you can tell me, do you know what external recorder they used?

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Good, then maybe you can tell me, do you know what external recorder they used?

We didn't use any external anything, it was recorded directly to the cards 10 bit 4:2:2 XAVC 410Mbps with a Rec709 LUT applied.

 

I was the technical advisor on the film, co-producer, editor and colorist. I was going to be the B camera operator too, but the director wanted me by his side.

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We didn't use any external anything, it was recorded directly to the cards 10 bit 4:2:2 XAVC 410Mbps with a Rec709 LUT applied.

That's amazing! What capacity cards and how long did they last? Sounds great! Because I have an Ursa Mini 4K, I can use that for Raw green screen stuff, but if Raw isn't really a requirement for TV shoes/movies, I'm very interested in your process.

 

So the Rec709 LUT was baked in?

Edited by Samuel Berger

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That's amazing! What capacity cards and how long did they last? Sounds great! Because I have an Ursa Mini 4K, I can use that for Raw green screen stuff, but if Raw isn't really a requirement for TV shoes/movies, I'm very interested in your process.

 

So the Rec709 LUT was baked in?

Umm they were just sandisk cards if I recall... it's been 2 years ya know.

 

Shot Rec 709, but it's not recording baked in. The files have lots of room for adjustment in post, like capturing in Clog. I was impressed with the image over-all and how well it handled details and highlights. I did have to work it quite a bit in post and it never fell apart or broke up. Yes, we didn't have the best cinematographer, he did cut a lot of corners which forced me to some shitty key's and power windows that I would never have done otherwise, thanks to not having any key on the actors in some areas with direct sun.

 

As I've said many times before, the C300MKII image quality is excellent. I really like the image itself, it does look really nice. The problems come down to the XAVC files and how difficult they are to playback, they're a real nightmare to work with unless you work in proxy mode. I like to edit with original camera files nearly all the time, outside of long-form narratives which the software packages simply can't handle a 2 hour sequence all at full res, they all have major issues. I will transcode to Pro Res LT 1080p in DaVinci and use that as my mastering editing files most of the time for long form narrative work. The UMP shoots Pro Res 4k which works flawless on mac's in real time with zero issues. If you're on a windows machine, the performance of the higher-end codecs like Pro Res 4444 and XQ can be tricky, but XAVC has zero hardware support... so it's no better.

 

So for me, 100% mac, 100% Avid/Premiere/DaVinci workflow, I prefer Pro Res 4444 or XQ files over anything else. To me, I'd lose a tiny bit of perceived quality, to get those codec's.

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Sam.. just buy an fs7.. its the most requested camera on the planet for your market .. you can mount any lens on it.. isnt the shape of a kettle.. with nutty audio inputs on top of the camera.. you can shoot audio in centre crop.. there you go.. question answered for free..purchase.. shoot.. make money..

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Sam.. just buy an fs7.. its the most requested camera on the planet for your market

Only if they've never seen the image out of a Canon C300 Mark II!

 

Most user-operators I see in my market use DSLRs.

Edited by Samuel Berger

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If anyone trying to make a purchase decision is googling and finding this thread, here is how long you can record on a CFast 2.0 with a C300 Mark II in different bit rates. https://www.vahire.com/wp-content/uploads/Canon-C300-Mark-II-Record-Times.pdf

 

After taking in all the information, I think the C300 Mark II is actually better for my needs than the C200. Especially if I add an external recorder after a few months, for Raw.

 

However I do expect the C200 to drop in price at least 1k around September when the BMPCC4K comes out. How this will affect the C300 Mark II pricing, I have no idea. But it will still be an amazing camera.

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However I do expect the C200 to drop in price at least 1k around September when the BMPCC4K comes out. How this will affect the C300 Mark II pricing, I have no idea. But it will still be an amazing camera.

 

Any reason you're saying this or just speculation?

 

The C200 is designed to compete with the EVA1/FS7/UMP4k and priced in the same neighborhood, so it probably doesn't make too much sense to slash based on the BMPCC4K (I think those overlapping markets are miniscule), but Canon has a history of semi random price cuts/new announcements (C400 anybody?!) with the C bodies so it's always a possibility.

 

I could see the BMPCC4K having an influence on the price of a C100mkIII, though. That is if it's even still in the roadmap...

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I don't think Canon will slash any MSRP; though who knows what retailers might do. No matter what, I'm pretty sure BM will sell quite a few 4Ks.

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Any reason you're saying this or just speculation?

 

The C200 is designed to compete with the EVA1/FS7/UMP4k and priced in the same neighborhood, so it probably doesn't make too much sense to slash based on the BMPCC4K (I think those overlapping markets are minuscule), but Canon has a history of semi random price cuts/new announcements (C400 anybody?!) with the C bodies so it's always a possibility.

 

I could see the BMPCC4K having an influence on the price of a C100mkIII, though. That is if it's even still in the roadmap...

It's just wild speculation, and wishful thinking, of course, but really, which hobbyist is going to pay $7500 at that point, when there's a $1250 Blackmagic camera shooting 4K Raw? The C300 Mark II came out costing $16000. It's $9999 now. Maybe the C200 will follow a similarly awkward pricing pattern.

 

I myself really want a C200. But, it's only an extra $1500 to get a used C300 Mark II....

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After taking in all the information, I think the C300 Mark II is actually better for my needs than the C200. Especially if I add an external recorder after a few months, for Raw.

Well... this is the problem and AGAIN why the UMP is a bargain. The reason I refuse to own ANY modern/new Japanese cameras that are affordable is because they purposely hinder their products for the sake of selling ones that are only slightly more expensive. ALL of the brands do this, Sony is probably the worst at this, but Canon has just jumped on the bandwagon as well. The C200 with the addition of a 10 bit 4:2:2 XAVC 410mbps codec would be a C300MKII killer.

 

Also, you can't record real RAW externally. I believe there were only a few cameras to experiment with that idea and none of them are currently available on the market. Even the Raw recorder for the F55 plugs into the back of the camera through a special connector, it's not an external device really. If the camera doesn't record Raw internally, it's not recording it externally.

 

However I do expect the C200 to drop in price at least 1k around September when the BMPCC4K comes out. How this will affect the C300 Mark II pricing, I have no idea. But it will still be an amazing camera.

I don't see Canon dropping the C200 price anytime soon. The Japanese completely ignore the other manufacturers, it's as if they don't even exist. They only compete against one another and it's usually only the age of a camera and how much inventory they have in stock, which leads to pricing changes. So yea if there are a lot of C200's in stock over the holidays, B&H may blow some out for less money on a promotional deal through Canon, but it won't be a direct effect over the new Pocket, no way.

 

To be quite honest, after Blackmagic released a "studio" version of the UMP for several thousand less, it makes me feel they're going to dump the current cinema product for something new. I bet they'll have an UMPMKII soon with a double ISO imager and maybe more resolution. Blackmagic can't stand still, they need to keep developing and making a better product soon. I'm kinda glad I waited for the new pocket as I knew it was coming TWO YEARS AGO. I had a friend who was on the beta testing side who told me all about it. I'm shocked that everything he told me was on the new camera from two years ago, crazy long development cycle.

 

Ohh and one more little tiny side note... A friend of mine had a problem with his C100 recently, It was showing dead pixels and dropped it off to Canon support. They told him it needed a new imager and he was like, what? They said the Canon cameras are designed for a certain run time and then they need the imager replaced. I thought this was hogwash, but I talked with one of my other professional still photographer friends and he verified the story. He'd been shooting Canon exclusively for two decades and said they have built-in obsolescence due to the imager over-heating and killing pixels. He says eventually you can't remap them anymore and that's the end of that. He told me an hour count, I wanna say 5000hrs maybe? but it was very low on the still cameras because of the packaging. The C series cameras are also packaged so tightly, they simply overheat and kill the imager.

 

This is one of the huge benefits of the LARGER cameras, they have more heat sync space, hence the imagers don't overheat as much. The UMP is actually a very well designed camera in that way, with one HUGE heat sync that runs right off the imager and stretches the length of the entire camera with a huge fan under that barely spins. So the likelihood the UMP's imager dies fast is pretty slim which is part of the reason I've always liked that camera. Obviously Sony and Arri use a similar design in terms of heat sync and such.

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I think I mentioned this before in PM, but not out here: Because I own the Ursa Mini 4K PL, I'd feel like I'm buying the same thing again. Also, what keeps me from getting the UMP, other than:

 

Lack of Dual Pixel Autofocus

Heavier than C200/C300 Mark II

Harder to steal shots with

 

Is this: I have yet to hear from a UMP owner who didn't have to return his camera a couple of times to get one that works. That scares customers. I don't want to go through that.

 

5000 hours is a year and a half of continuous use without turning off the camera. I'm not sure I'm going to get to that point.

 

 

Yes the UMP is far superior to the UM4K (except the 4K has global shutter), so it wouldn't really be buying the same thing again...it would just feel like it.

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Lack of Dual Pixel Autofocus

Only works with around 5 lenses... none of which are cinema glass. So you want a feature that is for still lenses which are 100% useless for shooting video.

 

Heavier than C200/C300 Mark II

Yes... but again big heat sync = longer life and less potential fan noise when using. Don't forget, you aren't using a V mount battery solution with the canon without making it huge and unruly to use. So the added "mass" is a benefit in terms of design.

 

Harder to steal shots with

You ain't stealing shots with a C series Canon camera at all. You can't hold the thing in front of you face for more than a few seconds at a time, it's heavy! At least the UMP has a shoulder kit which makes it "workable".

 

Is this: I have yet to hear from a UMP owner who didn't have to return his camera a couple of times to get one that works. That scares customers. I don't want to go through that.

:gulp: They said the same thing about the pocket cameras too... yet mine have been going strong for 4 years. :shrug:

 

5000 hours is a year and a half of continuous use without turning off the camera. I'm not sure I'm going to get to that point.

Point is, it's a shitty short-term design which doesn't even have a workable viewfinder option.

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