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What are some ways I can make the most out of my Canon C100 MKII? I've shot a few micro films on it, but I feel like I may not be using the camera to it's full potential. I watch test videos on Vimeo and they look incredible, but when I shoot I feel like I could get a way better image from my Nikon D3200.

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I own that camera and I get nice footage out of it but it definitely takes some work and you have to be very careful with contrast ratios and exposure. And you only get out what you put in front of the lens. Like if you want colorful images, you have to make sure that your actors are wearing colorful costumes. You can't really punch it up in post.

 

But what are you seeing that you don't like?

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I've been shooting with my MKI since 2013. It's been bulletproof for me. I've figured out that the sensor likes a lot of light, meaning expose as hot as possible while keeping your highlights barely in bounds. I've gotten clean footage @ ISO 5000 using this technique. Also, be careful when shooting in C-LOG, much more prone to shadow / sensor noise with this profile. The native ISO is 850 so I try my utmost to keep it there and the shutter @ 180 degrees. This just leaves the aperture and NDs for setting exposure but it's plenty.

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I use the c100ii and love it, it's been a solid camera and my clients love the footage I provide them. As many times as I thought about getting rid of it to purchase a 4k camera, I just can't bring myself to do it. I generally shoot everything in c-log into an external recorder at the native iso and expose for the highlights (just a personal preference). When going into an external recorder the footage is "...just ...better"! And I also noticed lenses play a HUGE part of the image quality you'll get out of the camera. Invest in some really good glass. And the sensor loves light so light it up!

Edited by Reggie A Brown

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Yeah I recall Shane Hurlbut said the Canon cinema sensors perform a lot better when exposed on the brighter side.

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Good news:

You all have provided me with ample bits of tips and information. I will definitely check into using better glass than the 18-55mm lens, I think that's what's throwing me off for the most part. As for the other tips I just have a few questions: why does C-Log cause so much artifacting? Also, what's the advantage of an external monitor compared to the LCD flip screen? Finally, I just want to thank all of you for providing me with your knowledge of this camera. It's fairly new but I'll get used to it's learning curve like I did my D3200.

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Reason for using an external recorder is, you'll get a better recorded codec (4:2:2 instead of 4:2:0). And you'll also get things like false color, the ability to add custom luts, a bigger screen for composition, better color accuracy to see what your image really looks like, etc...of course that depends on the recorder you choose. C-log causing artifacting? I'm not sure I know what you mean.

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Couple of other things, and this is true with anything involving cameras but especially the C100: If you find yourself saying "it's fine for now, we'll fix it in post" that is a red flag that means something is horribly wrong and you need to fix it before you roll one frame of film.

Also, since the image won't take a huge amount of grading, I find I get better results if I set a custom white balance with a calibrated gray card for every scene. Either Kodak or WhiBal work for me.

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