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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 August 22nd, 2010, 09:06 AM   #1
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Continuous AutoFocus 1080p24 DSLR Nikon for $600?! T2i maybe already obsolete?

Well, you may have heard the news, the new entry level Nikon D3100 will do 1080p with continuous auto focus and face tracking during video. Who knows, it may even get rid off the moir too. Anyway, here is a review on New York Times yesterday. NIKON D3100 - Gadgetwise Blog - NYTimes.com
It looks like it may give T2i run for the money.
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 12:23 PM   #2
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Last edited by Joseph Kassana; August 22nd, 2010 at 12:27 PM. Reason: Link
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 02:53 PM   #3
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Lets hope that Canon comes out with firmware update to add AF tracking to T2i. Otherwise, all 5D, 7D and T2i will be dinosoars in the age of AF tracking in DSLR video.
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 06:17 PM   #4
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Auto focus is a great feature. But I think alot of the pros have grown to embrace shooting in a complete manual mode. Even on my XH-A1 I dislike the auto focus feature. More often than not it is focusing on something I don't want it to focus on. Don't get me wrong, I love auto focusing, but there is a reason Hollywood doesen't use it.
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 10:13 PM   #5
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IMHO, AF tracking would be a very compelling feature. Hollywood doesn't use it because one, it is probably not available; two, actors' distances are marked out in advance and cameraman can practice these distances in its focus.
I don't think most of us would have that luxary in videoing. In cams like A1, the DOF is not as shallow as DSLR, and I am not sure 3D facial tracking was well implemented if at all.
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 11:06 PM   #6
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there is only one Pro level autofocus video cam lens, came on a sony XDcam 330 or whatever the model is. pro's just dont want auto focus because its not reliable, and it WILL mess up your shots far far far more often then not. I shoot plenty of unscripted material and handle focus ok.
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 11:09 PM   #7
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I'm not sure the tracking AF is really a killer feature for these cameras, but that aside the t2i is still significantly better. D3100 has very low bitrate compression, low res LCD with no monitor out while shooting, no audio input and no full manual control.
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Old August 23rd, 2010, 12:23 AM   #8
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there is only one Pro level autofocus video cam lens, came on a sony XDcam 330 or whatever the model is. pro's just dont want auto focus because its not reliable, and it WILL mess up your shots far far far more often then not. I shoot plenty of unscripted material and handle focus ok.
Quoted for truth. I can't tell you how many shots from my assistants have been ruined because they got lazy and depended on auto focus. While I can see it being useful in some applications, pulling focus manually is still the best way to insure you have quality footage.
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Old August 23rd, 2010, 12:25 AM   #9
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At shallow DOF, I would think AF would just get in your way. At 2.8, I wouldn't want it tracking on the tip of the nose.
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Old August 23rd, 2010, 12:35 AM   #10
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IMHO, AF tracking would be a very compelling feature. Hollywood doesn't use it because one, it is probably not available; two, actors' distances are marked out in advance and cameraman can practice these distances in its focus.
I don't think most of us would have that luxary in videoing. In cams like A1, the DOF is not as shallow as DSLR, and I am not sure 3D facial tracking was well implemented if at all.
Ok, question. Typical Hollywood shot.

5 people at a round table all talking. Your camera is place 10m (30ft away). You are shooting at F2.0. Only one person can be in focus at a time. With autofocus engaged, which actor gets the focus?

Another common scenario. A man and woman are walking along a sidewalk. We are dollying backwards with the camera facing them. They stop, have a few last words, and the girl decides to walk on alone. We are shooting F4, on a 135mm lens. Within 2 steps only one can be in focus. Which person does the camera choose?

In Hollywood, and in nearly every narrative filming setting I can imagine, these decisions are made in advance, marked on the focus wheel, and the AC pulls the focus as required to the desired person at the table, or on the street. Autofocus cannot make these decisions on it's own. How do you tell autofocus that when we are showing a two shot in a restaurant, we want to rack focus to the villian entering the door 40ft away that the two people at the table don't see?

This is not to say there aren't focus assists in Hollywood because there ceratinly are. Cinetape and Panatape are certianly used VERY often. But the DECISION making is left to the man with his hands on the camera. As well it should be. Until AF can read intent, it won't find it's way onto most narrative shoots. That said, for things like car chases or other things where the frame is decidedly simple, it could be useful.
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Old August 23rd, 2010, 01:17 AM   #11
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I shot commercial video for decades and never used AF. Period. It is a feature for amateurs and novices - fine for video of kids playing soccer. Pros cannot use it because it is unreliable and will ruin a shot, especially in live events.
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Old August 23rd, 2010, 08:38 AM   #12
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As you say, Sam...great for kids playing soccer. I use it when I shoot my daughter's games on my EX1. But, I've been in this industry a very long time and rarely use auto focus other than situations like that. The biggest thing I'm interested to see in a camera like this is the moire factor. I love my T2i except for that issue.

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Old August 23rd, 2010, 10:18 AM   #13
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As you say, Sam...great for kids playing soccer. I use it when I shoot my daughter's games on my EX1. But, I've been in this industry a very long time and rarely use auto focus other than situations like that. The biggest thing I'm interested to see in a camera like this is the moire factor. I love my T2i except for that issue.

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What lenses are you using on your T2i?
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Old August 23rd, 2010, 10:42 AM   #14
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How uncomfortable did this guy look when the lack of 25p was mentioned. Hilarious!
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Old August 25th, 2010, 09:36 AM   #15
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What lenses are you using on your T2i?
The lenses I've used so far with my T2i are...

Canon 50mm 1.4
Tamron 17-50mm 2.8
Rokinon 85mm 1.4
Canon 70-200mm 2.8L IS II
Canon 300mm 4.0L IS
Canon 24mm 1.4L II

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