Struggling with video on the Canon 5DMII – help is at hand

Written by Gary on July 5th, 2009

There is no denying, that for all its faults, the Canon 5DMII, now with its firmware update to enable manual control of shutter, aperture and ISO during video, has become a popular dSLR video camera.

It allows high quality video with low image noise at high ISO, and shallow depth of field which is just not possible on consumer camcorders.

Unfortunately, though, its not really designed as a video camera which makes taking quality videos a touch more difficult – unlike the Micro Four Thirds options such as the Panasonic GH-1 and Olympus E-P1, there is no image stabilisation and no auto focus during video, furthermore there is no electronic viewfinder as on the GH-1, so you are forced to use the rear LCD screen which makes manual focus more difficult and perhaps worse, keeping the camera steady hand held, much more difficult.

Fortunately, there are some after market options which videographer Philip Bloom has just created a blog on and which I felt is worth mentioning here:

The Hoodloupe 3.0 and Zacuto Z-finder V2 – a couple of options to help you view the LCD screen in daylight and at the same time allow it to be held to the eye to help steady the camera.

See his blog here.


3 Comments so far ↓

  1. Simon B says:

    “for all its faults”! 🙂

    Will let you know how these go, if I ever feel like shooting a few frames of video on a stills dSLR…

    (your other Darwin shots are terrific, by the way, Gaz)

  2. admin says:

    “all its faults” – refers to its lack of video shooting functionality such as live AF, electronic viewfinder, built-in image stabiliser, flip out LCD screen, wind cut noise, strange frame rate – and then the other functions that a true camcorder has such as power zoom, peaking to show areas of greatest sharpness, adjustable zebra for exposure control, etc.


  3. Simon B says:

    Nice LL article. But as they say,

    “Articulated LCDs and EVFs are important, but in many production environments, even fairly simple ones like low budget music videos, external monitors are demanded, and this means having live HDMI or component video output. Among Combocam only the 5D MKII, I believe, offers this.”

    The beefed-up cams in their Redrock accessories look hilarious – almost makes me want to shoot some video with my still camera just for novelty value! 😉

    How are you liking your new camera?