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Old May 6th, 2014, 12:55 PM   #1
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Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

I'm shooting with the Panasonic GH2 and GH3. Great cameras, but I really miss the ergonomics and other features of a dedicated camcorder. The problem is the DOF; it's too deep on any camcorder I've owned (my most recent one was the Panny HPX170). Is there a mid-range camcorder from Panasonic, Sony, Canon, or JVC that offers the glorious shallow DOF you get with DSLRs and the like?
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Old May 6th, 2014, 12:59 PM   #2
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

You can go with a Sony FS100. If you need to have future 4k or would like built in ND filters the FS700 is a good choice for the money.
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Old May 6th, 2014, 01:28 PM   #3
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

I should have added "I want servo zoom capability." Which pretty much eliminates anything with interchangeable lenses.
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Old May 6th, 2014, 04:03 PM   #4
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

Sony VG30, EA50 both come with the SELP18200 lens with servo zoom.

And if you buy the SELP18200 lens separately you can have servo zoom on the FS700 & VG900 as well.
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Old May 6th, 2014, 04:33 PM   #5
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

Depending on what you're ergonomically happy with, there are things like Zacuto Z-Motor that give servo zoom capability to still lenses.
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Old May 6th, 2014, 05:13 PM   #6
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

The sony cx900 or ax100 with a 1 inch sensor can give you a shallower dof then "regular" videocamera's (like the HPX170) and they have functionality closer to a videocamera.
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Old May 7th, 2014, 06:40 AM   #7
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

The fixed servo lens is going to limit your ability to get a shallow DoF.

Shallow DoF with video erganomics then you want to look at the Sony FS100 or Canon C100. Canon do make a servo driven cinema lens but last I saw it was $30,000.
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Old May 7th, 2014, 07:41 AM   #8
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

Take a look at the Sony F3 as well.

There are 1/2" and 2/3" 3-chip camcorders that improve DOF performance over the 1/4", 1/3" or smaller chipped you used previously. Only Sony has the 1/2" 3 chip but JVC, Panny, and Sony all have 2/3" units.

The larger the sensor, the more expensive, larger and heavier are quality zoom lenses. Zoom lenses in the DSLR market have greatly varying lens ring positions and ratios which makes zoom motors model specific. Then there's powering the motors if the camera body wasn't designed for that (basically the case with stills cameras used for video) .... you get the idea.
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Old May 7th, 2014, 07:48 AM   #9
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Edmunds View Post
I should have added "I want servo zoom capability." Which pretty much eliminates anything with interchangeable lenses.
Unfortunately that also eliminates anything under $40k since servo zoom lenses that work with imagers large enough for a dSLR DOF look start near $40k.
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Old May 7th, 2014, 08:41 AM   #10
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

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Take a look at the Sony F3 as well.
Bill was asking for a mid range camcorder :)
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Old May 7th, 2014, 09:03 AM   #11
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

I agree with Noa's suggestion of the CX900 or the AX100, best ideas for the money. A 1" sensor for under $1.5K is hard to beat. Won't have the shallow DOF you're used to with the GH4 but it will have more than just about anything else for the price.
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Old May 7th, 2014, 11:22 AM   #12
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

1" is indeed about as good as you're going to get. you can get a plenty pleasing DOF out of it, but i'm not one for completely bokeh'd background, i like a moderate blur, which i can get even with the 1/2" EX1 at f1.9

You can also tinker with a b4 lens on a gh4, with the spare resolution it should be quite a bit better than my trying that on a c100:

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Old May 7th, 2014, 09:53 PM   #13
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noa Put View Post
Bill was asking for a mid range camcorder :)
"Midrange" is ambiguous. Regardless, the F3 on eBay is one of the best deals around with many selling for around $5k. :-)
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Old May 8th, 2014, 01:47 AM   #14
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

My Sony EA-50 can get really nice shallow DOF especially if I use my Nikon still lenses on the camcorder body ..My favourite is the Sigma 18-35 constant F1.8 which is a stunner at receptions!!

The camera even with the stock 18-200 F3.5 also gives a neat DOF due to the cam having an APS-C sensor ... I wouldn't swop them for anything as I get DSLR features is a decent shoulder mount/or handheld video camera body with all the camcorder features including decent XLR audio. Really the best of both worlds at an affordable price too!! Under $4K over here

Sorry I haven't posted much but since the server crash here I can only access the newest topic in the weddings forum, not anything else!!

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Old May 8th, 2014, 03:06 AM   #15
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Re: Any camcorders out there with shallow DOF?

Thumbs up also for the Sony EA50 - Get good shallow DOF with the stock lens that has servo zoom (very slow though) but really good results with my Canon EF lenses and adapter :)
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