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Old April 20th, 2015, 11:10 AM   #1
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C100 mark ii or C300?

Hello Everyone,

I know that there was a similar post about this topic, however, i am coming from a completely different camera than Dave, in his post: C100 or C300?

It has been a while since i have last been on the forum, which i was discussing my purchase of the Sony NX5U back in 2010. Everyone was a great help here!

To get things started, as i had mentioned above, I am in the market for a canon c100 mark ii or c300 since its price drop. I am upgrading from a sony NX5U, which at this time i hardly ever do work that requires that camera anymore. Lately i have been using the 5D mark iii, which has been a great camera, but cannot see myself buying a dslr. I also want to make away from AVCHD compression, which is what i currently have now with the nx5. I know that the c100 also shoots avchd, but i can eliminate that with the ninja of course, which will call for a bigger rig. Right out of the box, the c300 shoots 50mb/s 4:2:2. Aside from those 2 notably important differences between the two. what else separates the two cameras? What will i benefit by buying the c300 opposed to the c100, or perhaps the other way around? low light, dynamic range differences?



Thank you,
Mike
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Old April 20th, 2015, 12:14 PM   #2
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

As a C300 owner since day one, I don't see a lot of advantages of the original c300 over the mark ii version of the C100. The C100mkii simply a more mature design and set of features, it's lighter, has better lowlight , has better image processing, a better LCD and 1080p60. The codec is really only important if you are submitting to network broadcast, and a ninja star gets you ProResHQ if you need it. There are people that will tell you that you'll get "hired more" if you have a C300. That really depends on who's doing the hiring. I've never had it come up.
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Old April 20th, 2015, 01:35 PM   #3
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

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Originally Posted by Mike Butir View Post
What will i benefit by buying the c300 opposed to the c100, or perhaps the other way around? low light, dynamic range differences? Thank you,
Mike
In favor of the C300, it's weather sealed. You can rent out the C300 (I'd only rent out my equipment if I'm going with the equipment.....it's still the number one rented camera and probably will be until the end of 2015). C300 has broadcast codec straight from the camera (no need for external recorder). C300 price right now better than ever ($6499 - $6999 new.......pre-owned low hour cameras $5000-$5900)! With that said, you can't go wrong purchasing the C100 MKII. I'm expecting a price drop on the C100 MK II by early summer.
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Old April 20th, 2015, 03:25 PM   #4
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

I have the c100 original, and while it's nice to have the ninja option, it can be a pain to drag the ninja around. But after watching this comparison by Gary Huff, I have shot a few things in AVCHD, that I would have previously used the ninja for.

Depends on your shooting style, but as a single person crew, I like to keep it simple - so I might opt for the better internal codec. Either way, they are both great cams, and can pay for themselves reasonably fast - not to mention the ease of use after shooting DSLR.

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Old April 20th, 2015, 04:54 PM   #5
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

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Originally Posted by Mike Butir View Post
I know that the c100 also shoots avchd, but i can eliminate that with the ninja of course, which will call for a bigger rig.
Not really. Get a Ninja Star. You cannot record 1080p60 with it, but you can get everything else, and in ProRes LT, 422, or HQ. For mounting the Ninja Star, you really only need a Cinevate Universal Accessory mount, and it adds a miniscule amount of weight to the rig. I almost always shoot with either the Ninja Star (if I want to be compact) or the Shogun (if I want the bigger monitor).

Quote:
Right out of the box, the c300 shoots 50mb/s 4:2:2
Let's clarify something here. The C300 shoots 50Mbps 4:2:2 in MPEG-2. AVCHD is MPEG-4, so visually, aside from the chroma subsampling, the bitrate is about the same because MPEG-4 is almost twice as efficient of a codec. That means that, when you want to keep your file sizes small and not lose visual quality, you have that option. And since I'm always shooting ProRes, I always get 4:2:2 anyway, and ProRes HQ is a far better codec than the MPEG-2 found in the C300.

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Originally Posted by Barry Goyette View Post
The codec is really only important if you are submitting to network broadcast
Which isn't even accurate. This is just a parroted line that doesn't have much stock in material that is actually captured for broadcast. It was a requirement at the beginning of digital capture for HD broadcast mostly as a "best practices" back when MPEG-2 was the codec. It was to discourage heavy use of cheap HDV cams and gear, which is MPEG-2, and would easily break down into a macroblocked mess after too many generations. In the US, it was primarily Discovery HD Theater leading the way with these requirements (not so much the Discovery Channel, which had one of its biggest shows, Deadliest Catch, being shot on quite a lot of HDV because of how cheap those cameras were to replace).

Discovery HD Theater no longer exists.

Not to say that you shouldn't capture in the highest quality you can, but we have come along way from the early days of MPEG-2 HDV and now you can broadcast whatever you like as long as you deliver in the specs that are asked for, regardless of capture. So let's stop with these empty "for broadcast" points.

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What will i benefit by buying the c300 opposed to the c100, or perhaps the other way around?
C300 will give you the ability to Genlock and jam sync with an external timecode generator and output video over SDI connections (I have an Atomos connect unit for that, have used it a handful of times since December 2012 when I bought the C100 Mark I). It's also a better match for the Recoil v2 from Zacuto for shoulder mount operation since you can use a Z-Finder because the C300's LCD is positioned properly for that, instead of an expensive electronic one that the C100 Mark II would require. The ND filters use buttons instead of a wheel that you have to manually rotate. And, lastly, if you commonly deal with clients who want to specify a camera because they've heard about one or another, they have commonly (in my experience) heard about the C300, but not the C100.

The C100 Mark II is cleaner at higher ISOs, has 1080p60 instead of 720p60, lighter for use on smaller gimbals such as the Ronin M and the Movi M5, and uses cheaper SD card media.
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Old April 21st, 2015, 01:44 PM   #6
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

Thank you all for you helpful advice!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Goyette View Post
As a C300 owner since day one, I don't see a lot of advantages of the original c300 over the mark ii version of the C100. The C100mkii simply a more mature design and set of features, it's lighter, has better lowlight , has better image processing, a better LCD and 1080p60.
Very interesting! I have been watching a lot of side by side videos of both the c100 and c100 mark ii. It is very evident that the image quality of the mark ii is better in both sharpness, low light, and color representation. With that being said, the original c100 and c300 share the same image sensor? So in essence, the original c100 image quality strongly represents the c300?

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Originally Posted by Gary Huff View Post

Let's clarify something here. The C300 shoots 50Mbps 4:2:2 in MPEG-2. AVCHD is MPEG-4, so visually, aside from the chroma subsampling, the bitrate is about the same because MPEG-4 is almost twice as efficient of a codec. That means that, when you want to keep your file sizes small and not lose visual quality, you have that option. And since I'm always shooting ProRes, I always get 4:2:2 anyway, and ProRes HQ is a far better codec than the MPEG-2 found in the C300.
So with that being said, bundling the ninja with the c100 mark ii will produce a better image? (not saying you can't use a ninja with the c300, too...) However, if the c100 mark ii has a better image, that being said, the c100 with a ninja may be the winner?



Quote:
C300 will give you the ability to Genlock and jam sync with an external timecode generator and output video over SDI connections (I have an Atomos connect unit for that, have used it a handful of times since December 2012 when I bought the C100 Mark I). It's also a better match for the Recoil v2 from Zacuto for shoulder mount operation since you can use a Z-Finder because the C300's LCD is positioned properly for that, instead of an expensive electronic one that the C100 Mark II would require. The ND filters use buttons instead of a wheel that you have to manually rotate. And, lastly, if you commonly deal with clients who want to specify a camera because they've heard about one or another, they have commonly (in my experience) heard about the C300, but not the C100.

The C100 Mark II is cleaner at higher ISOs, has 1080p60 instead of 720p60, lighter for use on smaller gimbals such as the Ronin M and the Movi M5, and uses cheaper SD card media.

Having the ability to play with Genlock and timecode is a nice option, however, i do not think i will ever find the need to utilize those features.. However, what puzzles me the most is that people will take me more seriously using a c300 oppose to using a c100.


I do really like the placement of the screen on the c300 much better. I like how the nd filters are motorized compared to manual. I like that i don't need to buy an external recorder for a better codec. But, if i will be sacrificing image quality going for the "better camera" i am not sure if this will haunt me if i were to go with the c300. or perhaps, the same if i went with the c100. There are pros and cons to both cameras, like there usually is in the process of buying a new piece of equipment. Are there any features within the menu of the c300 that are not offered in the c100 mark ii? just trying to sort everything out before leaning one way or another.


Thank you guys all again for your help!
mike
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Old April 21st, 2015, 02:03 PM   #7
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

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Originally Posted by Barry Goyette View Post
So in essence, the original c100 image quality strongly represents the c300?
Yes, pretty much.

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So with that being said, bundling the ninja with the c100 mark ii will produce a better image?
Not in a way that you would actually notice.

Quote:
However, what puzzles me the most is that people will take me more seriously using a c300 oppose to using a c100.
People will also take you more seriously if you have a nice ride and live in a mansion. It is what it is.

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I like that i don't need to buy an external recorder for a better codec.
Codec isn't better. Some clients don't like dealing with MXF, and others prefer the ease of using ProRes on a legacy FCP platform. Both of these scenarios call for a Samurai Blade or Shogun on the C300.

Quote:
But, if i will be sacrificing image quality going for the "better camera" i am not sure if this will haunt me if i were to go with the c300.
If you're worried about being "haunted" by your choice, then perhaps you'd be best sticking with what you have?

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Are there any features within the menu of the c300 that are not offered in the c100 mark ii
If you're down to worrying about differences in menu options between the two, then, definitely recommend you simply stand down from a purchase.
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Old April 21st, 2015, 02:33 PM   #8
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

I guess i am trying to justify why i should go with the c300 opposed to the c100. Whether that means that there are features on the c300 internally that will help benefit my productions or not. I know that i need to move away from my nx5u, as it is not doing much but sitting in its case.. in the price point that i am after, the C series seems to be the only camera that offers the "look" i am aiming for. However, i have been using speed grade a lot as of lately, and would hate to see that AVCHD codec fall apart. It would be nice to have a camera that doesn't require an external recorder, which is why the c300 still stands on mind. However, it really won't be much of a hassle rigging the ninja on board of the c100. One thing i just noticed is that the c100 mark ii offers 35mb/s in MP4. Is this only at 60P to account for the higher bit rate? although its a higher frame rate, it still is not going to do me any good at 4:2:0 though...
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Old April 21st, 2015, 03:25 PM   #9
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

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Originally Posted by Mike Butir View Post
Whether that means that there are features on the c300 internally that will help benefit my productions or not.
SDI outputs and jam sync are going to be the two. And in return you trade off 1080p60 for 720p60 and slightly less sensitivity.


Quote:
However, i have been using speed grade a lot as of lately, and would hate to see that AVCHD codec fall apart.
Depends on what you are doing in Speed Grade. Power windows? Secondaries? Keying? Just applying a LUT and tweaking the curves isn't going to be enough to break AVCHD.

Quote:
It would be nice to have a camera that doesn't require an external recorder, which is why the c300 still stands on mind.
Again, we're talking about 50Mbps MPEG-2. It's going to fall apart as well, though the chroma subsampling will help. I don't get where this idea comes from that 1996's MPEG-2 (H.222) at 50Mbps is going to be the be-all end-all over H.264, even with the 4:2:2 aspect to it. It's still only 50Mbps and was developed for use in the fixed-lens XF300 series cams. With the Ninja Star on the C100 Mark II, you're getting 4:2:2 at 176Mbps (max 220). That's a huge difference.

Thankfully, Canon has finally joined the 21st century with the XF AVC codec, which is very exciting to me. The C300 Mark II absolutely does not need an external recorder for anything, but the C300's internal codec was a dinosaur even when it was released.

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However, it really won't be much of a hassle rigging the ninja on board of the c100.
Especially not if you go for the Ninja Star, which is an ideal option.

Quote:
One thing i just noticed is that the c100 mark ii offers 35mb/s in MP4. Is this only at 60P to account for the higher bit rate? although its a higher frame rate, it still is not going to do me any good at 4:2:0 though...
MP4 is identical to AVCHD except the files are not in the AVCHD directory structure.
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Old April 21st, 2015, 04:04 PM   #10
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

I've used both cameras extensively and produce/shoot for broadcast all the time. And I recently purchased the C100 M2.

The main thing about the 50mb MXF from the C300 isn't so much the quality, but rather the integration into workflows that broadcast networks have established. It's an easy ingest for a media manager. But at this point, with so many different codecs, most places have a system where footage like AVCHD is simply transcoded to their edit codec of choice.

You will ultimately get better image quality with the C100 M2, especially if pairing it with an external 4:2:2 recorder, like a Ninja Star. And it doesn't really add much weight or bulk at all... I mount a recorder onto the threaded mount on the handle with a simple threaded ball mount and it works perfectly fine. And at this point, the codec quality is leagues better (220mb I-Frame 4:2:2, etc.)

The only reason I'd go for the C300 at this point is if you need HD-SDI, Genlock, and Timecode BNC terminals.

But as mentioned, the C100 M2 is just a newer camera, and inherently it gets upgrades that make it better, like 1080p60, Dual Pixel AF, Face AF, better image quality at the same ISO levels, much better LCD, etc. And depending on what recorder you end up using, you end up getting some of those above ports back.

Last edited by Michael Galvan; April 21st, 2015 at 04:42 PM.
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Old April 22nd, 2015, 01:32 AM   #11
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

Most of this discussion seems to sway towards the updated electronics, processor and really tasty Oled display of the C100 Mark 2.

That's what I'd choose. Well that or a second hand C300 because you will be able to pick one up for a song in a couple of months and it's still and will remain a very fine camera.

The other option if you wanted to dip your toes in the 4K world is the XC100 coming out in just over a months time. (no XLR though) I'm planning on buying that to see how 4k fits into my workflow prior to committing myself to selling my C300 and upgrading to the C300 Mark 2.
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Old April 22nd, 2015, 02:29 PM   #12
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

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Most of this discussion seems to sway towards the updated electronics, processor and really tasty Oled display of the C100 Mark 2.

That's what I'd choose. Well that or a second hand C300 because you will be able to pick one up for a song in a couple of months and it's still and will remain a very fine camera.

The other option if you wanted to dip your toes in the 4K world is the XC100 coming out in just over a months time. (no XLR though) I'm planning on buying that to see how 4k fits into my workflow prior to committing myself to selling my C300 and upgrading to the C300 Mark 2.
myself included, the c100 mark ii sounds like the proper choice. the performance difference with the newly updated electronics seem to be the best route to take. low light abilities at high iso levels is fantastic. however, i still haven't eliminated the c300 yet. I need to be certain that passing up that camera is ultimately the better choice...

4k has been a question i have been asking myself for some time. I am very drawn to the a7s, but there are a lot of qualities that bug me, The gh4 is a nice camera, but i don't think i will ever be in the market for a micro 4/3 sensor. and finally, i don't know how crazy i am about any of the black magic cameras.. the XC100 looks like an appealing camera, but without an interchangeable lens system i can't see myself being happy in the long run. I guess what i am really trying to say is that in the price point am aiming for ($5,000 -$7,000,) there is really no perfect 4k solution and i am better off buying a really nice HD camera. any thoughts?
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Old April 22nd, 2015, 02:43 PM   #13
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

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what i am really trying to say is that in the price point am aiming for ($5,000 -$7,000,) there is really no perfect 4k solution and i am better off buying a really nice HD camera. any thoughts?
That is correct. The EOS C series (100 and 300 both) give you the 4K->1080 look already, so you only lose the ability to master in 4K without needing to upscale.

This is what an upscale master looks like:

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Old April 22nd, 2015, 03:41 PM   #14
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

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That is correct. The EOS C series (100 and 300 both) give you the 4K->1080 look already, so you only lose the ability to master in 4K without needing to upscale.

This is what an upscale master looks like:

4K Upscale
That's right, both cameras have 4k image sensors and down sample to 1080. That image looks absolutely amazing! What is the process required to achieve this? Was this shot on the c300? With that being said, having the higher bit rate also helps, I would assume?
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Old April 22nd, 2015, 06:14 PM   #15
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Re: C100 mark ii or C300?

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Was this shot on the c300? With that being said, having the higher bit rate also helps, I would assume?
C100 Mark I to ProRes HQ.
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