Tuesday, 11 November 2008

21.1 MP 5D Mark II: with full HD video capture - Totally Awesome

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I've been looking to upgrade my old DSLR and my good friend Kalyan Varma, an excellent Indian wildlife photographer (currently exhibiting at William Goodenough College in London) suggested I take a look at the EOS 5D Mark II.

WOW - could this be the future of Wildlife cinematography? A digital SLR that can record full 1080 HD at 30 frames per second. Full HD on a camera that I can actually understand and operate. Sounds too good to be true?

The official specs state upto 12 minutes of continuous recording, or up to 24 minutes shooting SD on a 4GB memory card. The largest CF card currently available is 32GB so I expect that with this to hand you should be able to record over an hour and a half (96 minutes) of HD video - SWEET!

Compact, lightweight and with environmental protection the 5D could be the perfect camera for your next remote film shoot. Just pop it in your backpack with a couple 32GB cards and you have more than just a 'making off' or second camera, this has the potential to be your primary camera. (Amendment: See here for a film shot entirely using this camera)

Allowing use of the full range of Canon SLR lenses, timelapse functionality and now full HD video capture. Priced at an amazing £2,299 (compare his to the high-end professional HD cameras which can set you back between £30,000 and £45,000) what more could you want?

"Easily the most anticipated camera in the galaxy, Canon's 5D Mark II is official, and officially excellent." - Gizmodo

EOS 5D successor boasts a newly designed Canon CMOS sensor, with ISO sensitivity up to 25,600 for shooting in near dark conditions. The new DIGIC 4 processor combines with the improved CMOS sensor to deliver medium format territory image quality at 3.9 frames per second, for up to 310 frames.

Key Specifications:
  • New 21.1 Megapixel CMOS sensor with improved EOS Integrated Cleaning System (E.I.C.S.)
  • New Full HD 1080 resolution movie recording
  • 3.9 frames per second continuous shooting
  • High performance DIGIC 4 providing superb image quality
  • Maximum 310 large JPEG images in a single burst with a UDMA card
  • 3.0” VGA (920k dots) Clear View LCD
  • ISO 100-6400 (expansion from 50 up to 25,600)
  • 9 AF points + 6 Assist AF points

I'm drooling in anticipation - I can't wait to try this beauty and see if it lives up to all the expectation.


  1. Just a word of caution :

    1. CMOS sensors are a bit nasty when you are panning with the camera. The word I hear from inside canon is that its great for video when your frame is fixed, but if you try to move it around, it degrades. So watch out :)

    2. It can never replace your primary video camera. Sounds plugins etc will come back to bite ya. Its surely all in one camera and something you can use for non-professional stuff.

    I'm waiting for Nikon to do a D700 + Dx Frame + Video to upgrade :)

  2. OK I take back my words :D

    Check this out : http://www.usa.canon.com/dlc/controller?act=GetArticleAct&articleID=2326

  3. Apparently Red camera also have a big announcement to make on 13th nov about a digital still and video camera they are launching... if they don't get carried away with over-the-top specs (reducing post-production costs) we could be in for a winner.

  4. Stewart Hadfield11/03/2009, 12:47

    It's an amazing camera in low light when coupled with a fast lens, I've never seen any other video camera that can match it (tapeless or otherwise). I just shot a short film with it, and we did tracking shots (some with pans as well) and I only had a problem on one take. And I think it beats the Red Camera when it comes to documentary because it is so quick to get it fired up and filming.