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Canon Cinema EOS Camera Systems
For all Canon Cinema EOS models: C700 / C300 Mk. II / C200 / C100 Mk II and EF / PL lenses.


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Old April 13th, 2012, 08:56 AM   #16
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Hey Jim,

In addition to what has been listed above, here is my list for C300 grievances...

Take care,

- Auto iris would be great for run and gun
- An easy way to duplicate a picture profile
- Faster switching between camera mode and clip playback mode
- A rec review function that would allow to customize one of the assignables so the user could cue back the last recorded clip to any point for playback (aka REC Review button on Sony PDW-F800 XDCAM HD and HDW series HDCAM tape cameras)
- A longer, user settable cache rec function (right now, manual says it's about 3 sec). There may be some hardware limitation though.
- Manual audio control of the MIC input using one of the control wheels, right now the only option is to use the audio menu to adjust the MIC level when set to manual mode
- Display clip name/number while filming
- A compact audio only module that would plug straight to the two connectors on the back of the camera used for the LCD/Audio module. I find myself wanting to use the camera in a stripped down configuration more that I would have thought and hate to hate to lug around the all LCD/Audio module
- A clip on LED light accessory that would clip on the back of the LCD, that would be quite convenient
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Old April 14th, 2012, 03:01 AM   #17
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

In order of importance to me....

1. Fix colour aliasing on highlight edges
2. Add waveform to EVF
3. Allow rec/review with special modes enabled (sound would be nice too!)
3. Push any mini joystick to toggle LCD input selection (same as function button)
4. Add custom user presets with ability to call them via assignable buttons. (much like C1 - C3 on DSLR) this would be useful for quickly switching between 1080/25 & 720/25 with S&F50 amongst other things. Each preset should allow every current setting to be restored.
5. Improve magnify feature to allow three zoom levels and movable point of interest.


I'd love to see 1080/50 or S&F50 available in 1080p but I doubt that's possible or it would have been in there to begin with.
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Old April 15th, 2012, 02:33 AM   #18
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Waveform and in viewfinder don't remebr being able to get this except on LCD, but only had cam one day.
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Old April 15th, 2012, 02:43 AM   #19
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Good grief! and we were thinking of buying one. (Sorry I need a drop in here to get heads ups).

Cheers and good luck.
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Old April 15th, 2012, 05:06 AM   #20
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

As I have just got the finance together to buy this camera it's really interesting to read these very detailed and hopeful lists.

With one a a half years experience with the XF305 I recognise many of the issues that have been raised, no scopes in the viewfinder, cheap plastic covers coming off the VF and BNC and XLR ports, I've lost a few and now leave them off with a spare set for when I sell the camera. My Viewfinder cover, which I had to buy separately is held on with twine, a bit unsightly but I've yet to lose it.

From all accounts the C300 is a superb camera but also one with many ergonomic and operational flaws.

Thanks to forums like this and detailed reviews from many camera operators I'm buying this camera with my eyes wide open.

Sure it will be great to have these issues resolved, and to see Canon both listening to and supporting their new 'Cinema Eos' customers, but my experience with Canon tells me that few of these issues will be addressed in this version of the C300.

In fact i'm ready and willing to eat my hat if Canon step beyond the hyperbole and actually respond to what seem like really deep flaws in this expensive cross between a camcorder and DSLR.

They eventually after 2 years responded to owners of the 5DMk11 and revised the firmware to provide more control over filming parameters and an audio control and visual monitoring system. But all 7D owners have had to make do with what they bought, not even a Magic Lantern solution for them.

But who knows, if everyone submits feedback to them they might respond in the same way that Apple have responded to the onslaught of vitriol following the launch of FCPX. 9 months in and already there have been 4 updated versions released.

Somewhere in Canon they should set up a separate workshop and give an engineer with a lateral mind all their current HD products to take apart. Because somewhere in there there is a really good camera which combines the lauded optical results of C300 ( and soon the C500 ), the brilliance of the 5D MK11, with the usability of the 7D and other more recent DSLR offerings, the practicality of XF305/300, together with the new filming features of the 5Dmk111 and 1D X.

It's all there already - just need to be put together with a bit less 'hollywood' style marketing and a bit more focus on what the customer actually needs and wants.

Sony seem to be doing just this at the moment and this is reflected in the huge step up between the FS100 to the FS700. ( interestingly there are plans for a new handgrip to control a yet to be announced zoom lens )

They actually sat down with camera operators, engineers and teachers and listened to their input.

Maybe I'm being cynical but it seems that Canons involvement with the DSLR Guru bloggers is more to use them to market their products than to actually design a well thought out, ergonomically designed, complete HD video camera.

Yes, despite the flaws, I know what I'm about to buy and I will probably be going through the same process again in a couple of years time if I still choose to engage in this desire for brilliant HD images.

I could also, as some very successful colleagues of mine are doing, still be filming with a Sony Z1.
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Old April 15th, 2012, 03:54 PM   #21
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Mark,

You might also want to check out Alister Chapman's blog on XDCAM User as to what he thought of his C300 - and why he has just sold it after about 6 weeks of ownership. Mind you, he has the F3 to "fall back on" ;-)
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Old April 15th, 2012, 04:41 PM   #22
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

I keep reading about how much some people can't deal with the LCD/audio unit on the C300. It occurs to me that if Canon had made that integrated and not removable, just as many complains would be coming about NOT being able to remove it! Yes, it would be nice if we could get waveform and vector in the VF for when the LCD is not installed, but really, this is a minor thing. I have an EX3 that has been very difficult to deal with finding a case for, and fitting in an overhead compartment on some aircraft because of the bulky VF which makes the camera as wide as it is long. I've desperately wanted the ability to take the darn thing off for easy packing many times over the years. I've no doubt that if the Canon was built that way, and the LCD was not removable, I'd have the same desire to pluck it off of there to make it smaller for packing or tight shooting spaces.

I LOVE that I can strip down the C300 to it's smallest form and pack it into a rollerbag which I can fit into the overhead of an airplane. The fact that the handle and LCD remove separately are the only reason I can do this. Believe it or not, I can fit the C300, 4 batteries, 8 lenses, wireless receiver and transmitter, shotgun mic with dead cat, rain cover, assorted cables and accessories, filters, media cards AND my 7D all into a single roller bag that fits in any airline overhead compartment. This is a wonderful feature, not a flaw in my opinion. It would have been nice though to see a built-in mic for when the unit is removed, or if you are using the Canon 8-15mm lens. Any mic in the holder with that lens will show up in the frame (that lens is incredible!) But again, small complaint.

I also love the ergonomics, and I have close to 30 years of shooting Sonys under my belt. The C300 is really a joy to shoot hand-held.... MUCH better than any HDSLR or HDV cam I've used. I guess it's all up to an individual's preference, but for someone who's spent as much time as i have with a Betacam on my shoulder... this camera is FUN to shoot. It's also nice to lose some of the weight... all those years of Betas, U-Matics and you-name-its slung over my poor aching shoulders has taken it's toll.

My one real gripe is the stepped aperture.... that is something I could do without, and if I didn't already have so much Canon glass, I'd simply avoid that issue with some Zeiss glass. But c'mon.... aren't we in this business for the image quality anyway? The C300 speaks for itself here, and few if any that have actually shot with the camera can dispute that. I don't even mind the fact that the C500 was just announced, because shooting for TV broadcast, 4K is just not necessary, and there are more than a few editors out there who would string me up if I sent them files of that size. For TV production, this camera is ergonomic, fun, well constructed (except for the flimsy plastic port covers which snap off) and makes an incredible image. Sure, if you're used to Sonys it will take a while to get used to where the buttons are and the menus and such. Sony always made the form factor relatively similar in most of their cameras I've used... this was much appreciated, because it did make the transition to a new camera smoother. Well, the C300 is a completely different animal, but that doesn't mean it will be that difficult for people to get used to. And while I haven't shot with the F3 or FS-100, people that I know who do say they are very difficult to shoot hand-held. For me, THAT is a major flaw.... hopefully Sony will rectify that with the FS-700. In any case, I have absolutely no regrets about this camera, and look forward to many fruitful years with it!
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Old April 15th, 2012, 10:42 PM   #23
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Allan Black View Post
Good grief! and we were thinking of buying one.
Allan hold that thought, I just confirmed finance for mine a few minutes ago - nothing in this list (which I contributed to) or anything announced at NAB perturbs me. I've only shot with the C300 for an afternoon but found the ergonomics a joy.

Many of the requestes here are wish-list items, not absolute essentials, and come predominantly from happy buyers. A lot of them (like the lack of waveform in the EVF) are carry overs from the XF300/305 and while they would be nice, are not deal breakers.

I agree with Mark that it's good to buy with eyes wide open, but I don't share his sentiment that there are "deep flaws" with the camera. Mostly they're the kind of minor quibbles one would have with any camera (the XF300 is the closest I've used to a perfect camera, but it still has half a dozen points that annoy), let alone one with a fairly radical form factor. As Derek said, a lot of the gripes are a matter of personal preference - being able to strip the camera bare really appeals to me too.

This list exists because Jim has kindly offered to discuss our firmware wishes with Canon engineers - hopefully they're meeting him in good faith with the intention of acting on them.
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Old April 16th, 2012, 12:34 AM   #24
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Wilkinson View Post
Mark,

You might also want to check out Alister Chapman's blog on XDCAM User as to what he thought of his C300 - and why he has just sold it after about 6 weeks of ownership. Mind you, he has the F3 to "fall back on" ;-)
Thanks Andy,

Strangely enough last Thursday I was phoning around dealers trying, unsuccessfully, to find a spare UK C300 when I was offered an 'almost new' C300 that had been owned by a filmmaker that ran his own film blog web site. They were very coy about who it was out of the 3 or 4 active UK digital film bloggers.

Now I know whose it was!

Whilst I'm sure Alister knows how to look after gear I'm not that keen on having his cast offs. He might have run some destructions test on it, maybe to see if the XLR inputs could be glued to the back of the camera.

I first became aware of Alisters web site when I was researching buying my XF305 and watched his scathing review of the camera.


How could I have bought my XF305 after that?

Anyway this dealer was offering this 6 week old pre-used camera at full price - not a penny off. I just hope that they gave the seller full price.
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Old April 16th, 2012, 02:06 AM   #25
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Wilkinson View Post
Mark,

You might also want to check out Alister Chapman's blog on XDCAM User as to what he thought of his C300 - and why he has just sold it after about 6 weeks of ownership. Mind you, he has the F3 to "fall back on" ;-)
Alister says on his blog"The C300 is a great camera, the pictures are very good, but it’s just too much like a DSLR for me, so it had to go". Personally the fact that the C300 is like a DSLR is a really big plus point.
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Old April 16th, 2012, 02:10 AM   #26
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Dobson View Post
How could I have bought my XF305 after that?
Hilarious! He's certainly a hard man to please.

No doubt Alister is right on all counts, but they're nothing that stop people from shooting wonderful footage on the XFs: none of them are show stoppers. In fact of the dozen or so cameras I've shot with recently I find it about the easiest to operate, and IMO a very well built, well designed camera.

The only annoyance from his list that I share is having to select either barrel or rocker to control the zoom - it would be nice to have both at once.

I'd suggest most of the C300 complaints are on a similar level; certainly there's room for improvement but no critical flaws. The one potential issue I've read about that does sound major is the colour fringing, which (thank you Alister!) Alister Chapman happens to illuminate on his blog:
C300 Color Fringing. Update. | Alister Chapman

He finds almost the same result when testing a 24-70 L on his F3, and surmises why this is not happening (to the same extent) using identical lenses on Canon DSLRs. Well worth a read.
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Old April 16th, 2012, 04:43 AM   #27
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

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Originally Posted by Thierry Humeau View Post
- A compact audio only module that would plug straight to the two connectors on the back of the camera used for the LCD/Audio module. I find myself wanting to use the camera in a stripped down configuration more that I would have thought and hate to hate to lug around the all LCD/Audio module
+1 for this. It's too late for a built-in mic but this should be do-able. It's annoying that you can't record an audio guide track to aid synching without having the whole LCD/XLR module attached.

Last edited by Nigel Barker; April 16th, 2012 at 06:00 AM.
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Old April 18th, 2012, 10:28 AM   #28
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

[QUOTE=Thierry Humeau;1726886]Hey Jim,

In addition to what has been listed above, here is my list for C300 grievances...

Take care,


- A compact audio only module that would plug straight to the two connectors on the back of the camera used for the LCD/Audio module. I find myself wanting to use the camera in a stripped down configuration more that I would have thought and hate to hate to lug around the all LCD/Audio module

+10!!!!!!
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Old April 19th, 2012, 09:44 AM   #29
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Hey Jim,

So what was the outcome of your meeting with the canon folks?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Martin View Post
Hey guys, I'm meeting with the engineers on the C300 at NAB....and they want to discuss anything that might be missing, or need correcting on the C300. Now, both here and Japan, Canon is reading this and other blogs out there so they are aware of what has been posted. What I'm asking here is, are there any fixes or upgrades that might have been missed you would like to be passed on?....and I mean within REASON.....

Thanks!

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Old April 19th, 2012, 03:47 PM   #30
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Re: meeting Canon Engineers

Okay-
Had a great meeting with the engineers & a few tech reps. The director of the team that made the C300 & C500 was there (we've been friends for a while)....I read all of your posts out loud and we together discussed their viability. For the most part, THEY HAD ALREADY READ THEM!.....as I suspected. Canon is reading everything, out of the NY office, the Hollywood office, and at the factory in Japan. The waveform/vector in viewfinder issue they know about and I think, are working on it.....in fact, I was worried that this was a C300s discussion but at the end, I felt more confident that it was a firmware update meeting...so we'll see.

Jim Martin
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ps-Mark-this is the new Canon. They are constantly interviewing, surveying, etc, lots of owners, DPs, operators, to get as much info as they can. I would say at this point, they are more active than they ever have been and maybe more than the other manufacturers in talking with end users.
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