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Thread started 10 Oct 2012 (Wednesday) 14:59
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Best EOS for action/boat/beach/snorkel footage? 5D ii, iii, or 6D?

 
TheEngineer
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Oct 10, 2012 14:59 |  #1

I realize you guys probably hate these "what's the best" threads from noobs as much I as I hate "what's the best ski" threads on the jet ski forums...That said, I'm going to do it anyway :D

What should I buy for shooting oceanic themed videos? Canon 5D Mark II or Canon 6D? Or given what I'm shooting, should I bite the bullet and spend the coin for a 5D Mark III?

I am looking for the best option for taking my videos to the next level. I am 100% set on a DSLR because I like the ability for short field of depth as well as being able to shoot great stills (but the camera will mainly be used for video). I want to be able to record great low light footage (We camp a lot in the Bahamas), but I also need to be able record great shots off the side of a boat or jet ski, in the water, and on the beach.

Here is an example of some of the stuff I'll be shooting (from my YouTube channel):

http://www.youtube.com​/watch?v=eftYEAARavY (external link)

http://www.youtube.com​/watch?v=r1vQ8UKRfC0 (external link)

I understand that taking these videos to the next level will require better shooting techniques on my part, a steadicam, etc, as much if not more than it will require a better camera. I also realize that the DSLR is not a POV camera like the GoPro's that I've been using. I'd like to do more planned shots in the future, and not just leaving the camera on record all day long in hopes that I get something good.

I also understand that the 6D is not out yet, and specs sometimes lie, but based on specs alone is it worth it to wait for the 6D and pay the extra $300-$400?

Thanks for any advice...


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TheEngineer
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Oct 10, 2012 15:09 |  #2

Also worth mentioning is that the complications of recording audio are not a factor. Typically all my videos end up synced with music.

Memory cards are not a factor, nor is my video editing software and machine. Basically just want it to be known that contrary to how it may seem, a DSLR with a wide lens (16-35mm f/2.8l ii usm) is what I want to use.


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John ­ Sims
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Oct 10, 2012 17:39 |  #3

Nice video. Are you sure you really want to go the DSLR video route? It will give you better footage than the GoPro but with nowhere near the convenience or fun of a GoPro. Doing video with a DSLR is actually damn hard work and wouldn't last a day in the environments you were showing without a lot of care.

The GoPro is great. It is virtually indestructible, takes really good footage and you don't need to worry about it. If something did go wrong it's almost cheap enough to be considered a consumable. DSLRs and their lens aren't.

If your main issue is not being able to see what you are shooting get a WiFi back for the GoPro, a waterproof casing for your iPhone, load the App and you are good to go.

Seriously, by the time you have sorted your tripod, got your camera out of it's water and dust resistant bag, set it up, sorted the exposure, put on the ND filter re framed the shot, found your lens cloth, cleaned the lens and finally started shooting the girls will have been in the sea, out of the sea, and off down the bar. You don't do good DSLR footage, and boat, and ski and parasend, and dive and generally be James Bond. If you are doing DSLR video that is what you are doing and, to do it well, there isn't time to do all the other stuff.

A GoPro gives you really great angles that you can't get with a DSLR. A DSLR will give you great shots but not the same flexibility.


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John ­ Sims
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Oct 10, 2012 17:45 |  #4

Following on from that I'm not aware of a waterproof casing available for Canon DSLR's (or available at a sensible price). You could perhaps consider a Powershot which does have an underwater casing and would give you more options than the GoPro.


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TheEngineer
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Oct 11, 2012 15:30 |  #5

John Sims wrote in post #15105387 (external link)
Nice video. Are you sure you really want to go the DSLR video route? It will give you better footage than the GoPro but with nowhere near the convenience or fun of a GoPro. Doing video with a DSLR is actually damn hard work and wouldn't last a day in the environments you were showing without a lot of care.

The GoPro is great. It is virtually indestructible, takes really good footage and you don't need to worry about it. If something did go wrong it's almost cheap enough to be considered a consumable. DSLRs and their lens aren't.

If your main issue is not being able to see what you are shooting get a WiFi back for the GoPro, a waterproof casing for your iPhone, load the App and you are good to go.

Seriously, by the time you have sorted your tripod, got your camera out of it's water and dust resistant bag, set it up, sorted the exposure, put on the ND filter re framed the shot, found your lens cloth, cleaned the lens and finally started shooting the girls will have been in the sea, out of the sea, and off down the bar. You don't do good DSLR footage, and boat, and ski and parasend, and dive and generally be James Bond. If you are doing DSLR video that is what you are doing and, to do it well, there isn't time to do all the other stuff.

A GoPro gives you really great angles that you can't get with a DSLR. A DSLR will give you great shots but not the same flexibility.

I hear ya. Don't get me wrong, the GoPro is a great camera for what it does and they will definitely still play an important role in my extreme adventure video work. I'm looking to the DSLR more for obtaining some professional looking shots to tie all of the action shots together. I feel like the GoPro is still vital to obtaining "stunt" shots and underwater footage, but it comes up short at showing the true beauty of the Bahamas.

I fully agree with everything you said though. Although I don't currently own a DSLR, I definitely see that it will be more of going to a place with the sole intent of making a video as opposed to leisurely letting the GoPros roll while I have fun doing other things.

I was able to find an underwater "Splash" housing from SPL for about $1700 that should serve my purposes. I'm still intent on a DSLR, but what I'm not sure of is whether or not the number of AF points makes a difference when recording video. I'm also still debating whether to wait for the 6D to come out, because on paper it looks like it will perform better in low light.


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John ­ Sims
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Oct 11, 2012 15:51 |  #6

Canon DSLR's auto focus in a completely different way when videoing to that of shooting stills so the auto focus points are irrelevant in video.

While the older video capable Canon DSLR's will auto focus with the correct lens when doing video they wont do it during video. You have to focus prior to recording and if you need to change, or follow, focus your only option is to do it by hand.

The latest DSLR's (and the 5D MkIII following a forthcoming firmware upgrade) will continue to focus during recording (apparently?) when fitted with on of the two new stepper motor lenses.

This feature is also available on the new EOS M (a DSLR without the pentaprism). This my be a viable option if your primary requirement is video.


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Drozz119
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Oct 11, 2012 16:29 |  #7

Nice work! Living the LIFE! We'll be shooting at Kamalame in a couple weeks.

Like John said.. Focus will be your biggest hurdle. Shoot wide 14-16mm.. and focus to infinity before installing the housing. DSLR's are also more prone to camera shake...shooting wide will help.

Either the 6d or 5d3 will work. You'll probably want to shoot a lot at 60p for slow motion too.


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John ­ Sims
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Oct 17, 2012 09:43 |  #8

Having just seen the video for the GoPro 3 I think the answer is there. I'm starting to question why I bother with the hassle of a DSLR :-)


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sspellman
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Oct 17, 2012 19:49 |  #9

The latest GoPro3 with 1080/60fps and 720/120fps in a waterproof housing is a clear winner in any sort of watersport videos, especially since a waterproof housing for any DSLR is $1000 plus. I don't think you will see any dramatic video quality improvement in a 5DmkIII over other cheaper Canon DSLRs and I would spend my budget on a better variety of lenes and support gear. I have both the 5DmkII and 60D and to me the only reason to use full frame for video is to use a full frame fisheye lens.

I would move in the direction of the Hero3 for wet shots and a 60D and 17-55/2.8 with a waterproof bag for less dangerous work.

-Scott


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TheEngineer
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Oct 18, 2012 08:26 |  #10

The new GoPro 3 does have some terrific specs. And even though they claim it's low light footage will be 2x better, there's still no way it will provide adequate video at night. The other main problem I encounter with the GoPro is being able to maintain detail at a distance. There's only so close we can get to the jet skis when recording. At times the GoPro makes the skis look like they are a mile away.

I definitely plan to continue using the GoPros rather heavily...But mostly for up close underwater and action shots. I have a feeling I will buy a 5D Mark II and use it for most of my scenic and low light shots.


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Oct 18, 2012 12:22 |  #11

TheEngineer wrote in post #15137808 (external link)
I definitely plan to continue using the GoPros rather heavily...But mostly for up close underwater and action shots. I have a feeling I will buy a 5D Mark II and use it for most of my scenic and low light shots.

This is a good plan. A cheap used 5D II will compliment the GoPro's quite well. 5D for beauty and timelapse shots, GoPro for action.


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Best EOS for action/boat/beach/snorkel footage? 5D ii, iii, or 6D?
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