Cinematography : Sony A7s or Canon 5d - for short film based on sports by Debapriya Sengupta

Debapriya Sengupta

Sony A7s or Canon 5d - for short film based on sports

Hi there, I am shooting my first Short with a professional crew. I am undecided on chosing the right camera - my DOP wants to go with Sony a7s and I have canon 5d with magic lantern in mind. Its an indoor sport based and in exterior involves a car crash scene. Any advice or suggestion most appreciated.

Sandro Baraba

Keep in mind that if u plan to push image intensely in the post that both cameras you mentioned are recording 4:2:0 color sampling internally and therefore you wont be able to push it too much if you plan to do that . One thing you should consider is getting some kind of recorder like ATOMOS ninja or ATOMOS shogun ( shogun especially for a7s if u plan to use camera to its full potential 4k output etc . For that car crash scene probably gopro or something , i dont think its good plan to risk losing 5dmark iii or a7s unless your budget allows you that . Its not essential to think so much about post in early stage but its definitely better to prepare yourself earlier in the preproduction and think of all the potential obstacles you will encounter later on . If you ask me between these two cameras i would go with a7s and shogun but keep in mind that your lens choice is much wider on canon unless you get speedbooster for sony . One suggestion tho is to maybe get canon c 100 plus atomos ninja . With c 100 u have already built in ND filters , XLR inputs and that can save you alot of time rigging one of these two cameras you mentioned . I own c 100 so i know what it is on the field when it comes to practical and fast work and picture quality is nice with atomos ninja . If you want 4k then go for a7s . I hope i helped .

Debapriya Sengupta

Thanks a lot Sandro for the detailed advice, it really helped a lot in the perspective. Actually we are pushing for a7s since its low key and live event footage, we are looking to get. Also I am trying to get shogun for the output. Car Scene - we are planning to use Go pro - but since its a night footage, we still have to decide that. We have a limited budget and its a few minutes shot, but then we are shooting at an international sporting event and want to give it my best go, with the best resource manageable in the same. Thanks again for the suggestion for c100, let me check on that but might not work in the budget. Yes, ideal deal will be seeing your advice which works with the specs I have in mind, to settle with a7s.

Debapriya Sengupta

Alle, even its his job, he has to put it in my perspective to see that we come with the best result. So as a director I need to be involved in that decision at pre-production. :)

Michael Ryan Olson

Don't ever plan on using the 5d Mk III with magic lantern for anything where time is really important. It can produce nice footage but the workflow and functional issues are a nightmare. You will experience the camera overheating and shutting off constantly using the raw recording option. Also I wanted to clarify on what Sandro said - the a7s records 4k - but only if outputting to the atomos shogun. So if you're already talking about that recorder, it's a cheaper pair than the c100. And I could be wrong but I do believe with that recorder that the a7s should also output 4:2:2 so you'll be able to grade it without the footage falling apart. If it's really really low light I would recommend this set up over the previously mentioned use of the Canon C100 but both cameras are good in low light (the a7s is just undoubtedly better). Check out Neumann Films on YouTube - he does a great review on the a7s paired with a shogun and says he would would gladly use the combo over his red.

Craig D Griffiths

The Sony has super low light capability. Hunt down the review on Phillip Blooms YouTube channel. It will blow you away. I also think it is 4k, which may be helpful for reframing in post.

Orhan Sokoli

I guess it deepends on what look u want to achive. But I won't use canon 5D once again... A better choice is ARI ALEXA, Red One, Red Scarlet or even Black Magic Production 4K

Arthur Tao

If you are shooting action sequence you will have to keep in mind that the rolling shutter in A7s in full frame mode is quiet severe. If you shoot it in crop-mode using 60p then the jello effect is much less when you have quick pans and other types of camera movement

Owen A Smith Gtc Dggb

I'm a RED camera owner and DoP I do have a canon 5D rig as well as several other TV broadcast cameras. The canon 5D has its place but if you want to shoot a serious looking film I would suggest that you use a serious camera that you would shoot a feature film with. If you personally wouldn't want to produce a feature length film shot with a canon 5D then don't shoot a short with it. The canon 5D when set up right can produce great looking cinematic shots but its not a RED Camera or an Arri Alexa and therefore its no substitute. If your working with a professional crew then I suggest you work with a professional Movie camera to get the best results. The canon 5D has a very shallow depth of field not best for action shooting. But if you are limited by budget and are going to shoot with the 5D then I suggest you shoot with a decent rig set up and shoot with an Atmos Blade ShoGun attached with a solid state drive it will make life just that little bit easier and help you to get better results also use a good set of prime lenses to, for the canon 5D maybe cook S2 or Carl Zeiss CP2s

Natalie Cass

Neither of those cameras would be a good choice to shoot sports in motion. You need something that will track focus. Go with the Sony FS700 with Sony glass.

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