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Canon EOS Crop Sensor for HD
APS-C sensor cameras including the 80D, 70D, 7D Mk. II, 7D, EOS M and Rebel models for HD video recording.


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Old September 18th, 2009, 08:45 PM   #1
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7d vs 5d vs Red Scarlet (Ultimate Question!!)

The newly announced 7d to be sold in early october/late september has brought alot of commotion to the table, especially to 5d owners. The 7d is cheaper than the 5d counterpart and fixes some bugs such as 16bit audio vs the crappy 12bit in the 5d and also adds new framerates (60p,24p, and a real 29.976 codec). It has been almost 2 years since the red scarlet has been announced! Spec wise the 7d and 5d have much much larger sensors than the red scarlet and cheaper (most importantly). The complaints of the 7d not having a full frame sensor (for video) vs the 5d is absurd. Be happy that you can have a camera that offers so many shooting options, low light, shallow dof, etc for a fraction of prosumer hd cam. The 7d and 5d can destroy cams like the xh a1, hvx, hpx, ex1/3 etc. They have literally 7 times a bigger sensor! The 1.6 crop factor has riled people up vs the 5d's full frame. That much shallow dof in the 5d is a little ridiculous. Even real 35mm film cameras technically have a smaller image plane then the 5d. The fact is that the 7d has sensor that is just as big as the red one that sells for 15k. Same low light performance (if not better from the 7d) and shallow dof. Full frame becomes way too shallow sometimes. The scarlet has also riled people up with its ability to record 3k, amazing audio, and 120fps (180fps burst). I personally think there is way too much commotion over the scarlet it will probably suck in low light because squeezing 4k into a 2/3 chip will lower its low light sensitivity and it won't have really that much shallow dof (obviously more than xh a1, hv30, hfs100, hpx/hvx cam) but not that much cause its only 2x bigger the chip than most prosumer cams. The 7d on the other hand has a 2x bigger chip than the red scarlet, is cheaper, has been announced to be in stores at a specific date not up in the air, full manual control and different frame rates plus a canon ef mount (red scarlet mount is up in the air). OR you can have a canon 5d same as the 7d but no different frame rates (24p is usually a must for indie film makers), but it has a full frame 35mm sensors (yes bigger than the red one) for even better low light (not sure if the new Digic 5 from the 7d will improves iso sensitivity) and even shallower dof. So for 1.6-1.9k u can have the 7d which has an s35 sensor like the 15 thousand dollar red one, 24p, 30p, and 60p, u can have a 2.5k 5d mark II body which doesn't have 24 or 60p but a full frame sensor. Finally u can have the red scarlet which hasn't even been in production has a much much smaller 2/3 sensor (5d is more than 3 times bigger, 7d has twice as big sensor), 3k video, great manual control and much larger price that could vary from 3.5k to 8 or 9k? (with the red one, red announced its price at 10k and turned out to be 15k). I hope i don't sound redundant.
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Old September 18th, 2009, 08:53 PM   #2
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I say wait until the end of the month and see what Canon's getting ready to announce. I suspect it's a 7D sensor mated with a proper video body (XLH2) with proper I/0, audio, and data recording.

My only other advice is: Paragraph breaks, dude. Paragraph breaks. ;)
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Old September 18th, 2009, 10:21 PM   #3
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I'd like a combination of the 7D and the A1S, sort of ...

I'd like a combination of the 7D and the A1S, sort of ... And it would also be nice to see a 18-200/300mm? with a constant F4 Canon IS ring-type USM (constant MF override ability) lens for the 7D in the meantime for when there's plenty of light and not much time to change lenses.
And a fixed 13-15mm F1.4/F2 EF-S lens would be sweet, too.

Or even more, I'd like so see a 7D-type sensor and innards put in something that is shaped/sized sort of like the small JVC HM100 I briefly had, and still have interchangeable EF/EF-S lenses, and maybe a cheaper compact version with a built-in 14x-20x ... But with WAY better controls and IS than the otherwise nice HM100.

The Scarlet and Reds in general sound awesome if you are a hardcore, nicely-funded independent/commercial filmmaker who needs stellar image quality above all, but for most of us, especially those already in to EOS cameras and lenses (like me as pro photojournalist), the 7D is very affordable and good-enough image quality for many, many uses below BBC/Natl.Geog./Discovery HD channel level.

The fusion of DSLR tech into real, video-first camcorders would be very, very welcome development -- I bet it will be next year at the earliest (and yeah, probably XLH2-like at first), though, and we might see a SD/CF-based 1/3" 3-chip A1S replacement first.
But I'd rather see something that competes more with the smaller 35Mbps HM100, and maybe later the 1/2" EX1/EX3.

Last edited by Shaun Walker; September 18th, 2009 at 10:37 PM. Reason: slight clarification
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Old September 18th, 2009, 11:44 PM   #4
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I'll chime in because this is pretty relevant to me.

I've got a JVC GY HD100 and am looking to upgrade. I was looking at the Scarlet but then found out about the D5 from watching some footage shot by Phil Bloom, specifically his stuff shot with the pre-release 7D.

I kind of couldn't believe it, so when one of our local camera houses got a D5 in I borrowed it for a morning and checked it out. I have no real experience with still cameras. That being said I couldn't believe the images I was getting from this thing...

Shallow depth of field, low light performance....I know, I know... but coming from a 1/3 sensor it was like YES!!!!!! I was looking at shelling out around $20,000 bucks for the Scarlet (35s with lens and all the chunks I'm guessing would be around that) but with the economy in the dumper I'm a little worried about spending that much dough.

The 7D, even with the work flow issues, sounds like an incredible camera for me. I figure I could put together a cine type rig (with the stuff I already have) for $2500 - $3000 bucks. This would let me get up to speed in the "shallow depth of field world" and when the Scarlet comes out I've got a great B-cam.

I'm interested in what Canon may announce but the 7D is looking pretty good...
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Old September 19th, 2009, 12:08 AM   #5
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Burk, you are a typical candidate for the 7D. It's definitely the best thing going in terms of inexpensive shallow depth of field HD video the day it is shipping. There won't be a better deal, as this camera pretty much does whatever frame rate you want (other than intervalometer frame steps, of course). On top of that, it's $1699 USD. Add a few f2.8 crop factor zoom lenses, and you're in pretty good shape for less than the cost of any equivalently capable camera.

But, don't let this camera fool you that you'll be up and running comfortably on day one.

You'll need to investigate and then purchase quite a few important accessories if you want to shoot video as well as you're used to shooting with the HD100. For one, the HD100 goes on your shoulder. And, it has a viewfinder for when you do that. And, it has XLR inputs. And, audio level control. And, the ability to roll more than 12-14 minutes on a clip. And a whole bunch of less critical things more readily than the 7D.

But, to get the depth of field with the HD100, you need to add some gear, and have enough light to do it in the first place. If those other two points matter to you as a creative filmmaker, the 7D might be just what the doctor ordered.

But if you can forgo that sort of performance, the hoops you have to jump through to get there might just be too many.
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Old September 19th, 2009, 01:41 AM   #6
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I hear you Eric.

My main gripe with 1/3 inch cams is the low light issue and the depth of field. I've looked at the Letus and Red Rock stuff but for what I want to do on some short film projects.... I just can't get their with my camera and that stuff. It's bad in marginal light as it is, I couldn't imagine trying to fight that with a Red Rock strapped to the front.

I know people have done incredible stuff with 1/3 inch cams and 35mm adapters. But I've also seen a bunch of horrible stuff and I guess I just don't want to have to mess with it. It's ironic that letus just came out with a relay lens for my camera. I think it costs $2700 bucks. I'm just not feeling that price point with the D7 coming out.

The D7 seems capable of capturing stunning images in incredibly low light. Throw in the 60p overcrank, cheap rental lenses and low price, I'm more than happy to shell out for a shoulder mount and one of those eye pieces for the viewfinder. In fact it seems that the D7 is stepping into a whole 3rd party gear wonderland that was inspired by the 5D mark II.

My only fear is that other local shooters will find out about this stuff :)
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Old September 19th, 2009, 07:14 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Robert Sanders View Post
I say wait until the end of the month and see what Canon's getting ready to announce. I suspect it's a 7D sensor mated with a proper video body (XLH2) with proper I/0, audio, and data recording.

My only other advice is: Paragraph breaks, dude. Paragraph breaks. ;)
A 7D video specific sensor should be considerably better than what's in the 7D due greatly decreasing pixel count and enlarging pixels size: Even better low light, "jello" almost eliminated, and an AA filter that is specific to video.

But what does it look like? Canon doesn't make proper removable video lenses for that size. A 10x fix lens would need to be 2.8, and would be large and expensive. Is the IS in the camera or the lens? If it uses 35mm SLR glass, is the video division going to make bodies to sell the photo divisions glass? What does this larger form factor look like and how does it work ergonomically?

All the main video equipment makers look at major distruption of at least the low end of their pro lines. Do they want to start the new era? Does Red make them start the new era?

Canon strategy has been to follow with superior lower cost products. I don't know what they will do with leadership in this area.
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Old September 19th, 2009, 09:42 AM   #8
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It seems to me Canon is going to hit a big market with the 7D, just as they did with the 5D. I've always preferred bigger chips (having shot with 2/3" broadcast cameras for many years), though now I'm using an XH A1 and getting very good quality. The thing about the 7D vs. the Scarlet is that the 7D is here, or will be by the end of the month. And, to get the larger chip of the Scarlet 35s, when it exists, is $7K for just the body alone. With Red products, except the base yet-to-exist Scarlet that will, supposedly, sell for about $3K, you have to buy attachments to make it work just as you do with the 7D. My guess is the Scarlet 35s would set you back probably $10K at a minimum. Even at that price, it should be a great camera.

However, price is more important to most of us than it used to be, I think. To get big chip quality from a camera like the 7D at such a low price, I can put up with some operational issues, go back to shooting double system sound, etc. For the work I do, I'm not into the excessive use of shallow depth of field and don't want it on most shots. I do want it somewhat on some types of CUs when I feel it helps the shot. So it will be nice to have the ability to control that more than with smaller chip cameras. But the thing that I like about the camera is more centered around the clarity of the footage, the way it handles blacks and highlights, the latitude, etc.

The Scarlet 2/3" camera, when it comes out, will challenge the traditional 2/3" chip 3-chip cameras more than anything else. The last 2/3" chip camer I bought was a DSR500 back in 2000. It was $15K, and I used my old $9,000 Nikkor ED lens off a BVW300. An equivalent lens would have been around $15K more, so that was a $30,000 package. If the Scarlet can do the same thing for $10K or even $12-$15K, it will be a killer for people who use the traditional 2/3" chip cameras, in my opinion. But the 7D chip is still immensely bigger than a 2/3" chip and is going to give a significantly different look.
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Old September 19th, 2009, 01:08 PM   #9
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I say wait until the end of the month and see what Canon's getting ready to announce. I suspect it's a 7D sensor mated with a proper video body (XLH2) with proper I/0, audio, and data recording.
Totally agree here (except I think it will be called the XLHD). This is absolutely inevitable. Hopefully the announcement comes before too many buy the 7d thinking it's the ultimate video camera (it's still a DSLR), then gripe about how Canon screwed them over.
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Old September 19th, 2009, 03:59 PM   #10
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Inevitable yes but it will take some time

I AGREE. It will be inevitable, but its gonna take about 3-4yrs for that to happen. One of the very few good things from 1/3' cams (not trying to say that 1/3' cams are BAD they are more than usuable) is that they have a very long zoom range. So ppl will want that xl h2 with the same zoom range as its successors. Plus zn xl h2 will probably cost 6k when it comes out vs the 2k of the 7d and 3k of the 5d mark II.
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Old September 19th, 2009, 08:03 PM   #11
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I'm going to hazard a guess that Canon will come out with a 2/3" chip "real" video camera next, and it will be tapeless. Closer to the Scarlet type. I think it'll be awhile before they put a big chip in one. But that's just a guess.
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Old September 20th, 2009, 06:46 AM   #12
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My only other advice is: Paragraph breaks, dude. Paragraph breaks. ;)
That was funny - you said what I thought...

I think waiting is a great option.

Here is a funny thought - some people are mad because the 7D seems better yet cheaper. Does this mean they would rather pay more or have less features? If so, I have the perfect solution - send Canon more money and/or put super glue on some of the buttons so you can't use them. -- :)

Or if this sounds stupid - stop complaining and wait for what you want. Of course this means missed opportunity but you will eventually get what you want.
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Old September 20th, 2009, 10:13 AM   #13
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I think it's always best to buy when you have a need, put it to use, make money with it (hopefully), or just make awesome things. Waiting around for the next best thing will always leave you questioning whether "now" is the right time to purchase. Everything becomes obsolete so just buy when you have a need.

FWIW, I really think it will be some time (at least a year) before we see companies like Sony or Canon releasing sub-10K cameras with S35mm sized chips in more "traditional" form factor video cams.
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Old September 20th, 2009, 11:49 AM   #14
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Well said. If you need it, get it. If it doesn't fit your needs, get something else. But, if you look at recent video history for the past dozen or so years, the idea that one camera will appear and R&D will stop there is folly. There will always be something new. If Canon suddenly hit the market with a traditional video camera that has a 35mm size chip, that doesn't make what you have any worse. That motion picture film size chip in the 7D or the still photo size 35mm chip in the 5D MKII are not going to suddenly become unuseable because somebody makes a non-hybrid video camera with the same chip. The "real" video camera would be more user friendly and might shoot longer takes, but you can still do what you do with the hybrid.
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Old September 20th, 2009, 12:12 PM   #15
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Or if this sounds stupid - stop complaining and wait for what you want. Of course this means missed opportunity but you will eventually get what you want.
Or buy both:) The 7D is that cheap that it shouldn't dent anyone's pocket who is in the market for a Scarlet.
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