Tips & Techniques » DSLR Video The Revolution Has Begun
|Convergence is blurring the line between photography and video. Which direction will you go in? This image was shot with a 20mm lens at about 1 sec to create motion and blur the water.|
Video is the new photography. Today’s fast-paced, pop culture and web-centered information and entertainment pipelines demand informative and entertaining content in the form of moving imagery. Unless you’ve been 'off the grid' for the last couple of years you know that there is a Revolution happening in the world of photography, video and film-making. It has been called New Media, Fusion or Convergence. Convergence is defined as the tendency for different technological systems to evolve towards performing similar tasks. Whatever you call it, photographers everywhere are starting to experiment and capture motion with their video enabled DSLR cameras.
Just four or five years ago this would not have been possible. Advances in sensor and processor technology now allow the full frame image in a DSLR camera to be down-sampled to 1920 x 1080 pixels. It does it seamlessly, minutes at a time, 24 or 30 times every second without overheating. Then the data gets compressed with a video codec (H.264 / MPEG-4 / AVC) and saved to an SD or CF card. That’s a lot of data throughput and processor power. Nikon, Canon and others have only recently conquered this technology.
|Older manual prime lenses are great for DSLR Video. This one, shot with a Nikon 20mm lens at 1/15 sec, enhances the sense of motion.|
The Revolution was kick-started by Canon in October 2008 with the release of its first HD video capable DSLR, the Canon EOS 5D Mark II. Canon included video so that photojournalists could capture HD video and high quality stills with the same device. Despite its initial flaws, photographers, film makers and videographers quickly took notice of the stunning image quality and adopted the camera. Some of the early limitations, including unorthodox frame rates and no manual exposure control, were later resolved with firmware updates.
DSLR Video Advantages
Although many video capable DSLRs still have limitations such as Jell-O cam (rolling shutter), poor audio controls, lack of pro audio inputs, manual focus only, moiré and a heavily compressed file type, the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages.
|The floating sensation and sense of motion is achieved in this underwater image with a slow shutter speed and shallow depth of field. Shot at 1/30 sec and a 24 -70 zoom on a Canon 1ds MkII.|
Although the DSLR video movement has been driven by technology, it has become more about the challenge and the opportunity to learn and create. The Convergence of motion and photography has enabled the masses and unleashed a wave of creativity. It’s a Revolution people! If you’re a photographer with experience in digital photography, then you already have many of the skills necessary to join the video revolution. Don’t get left behind. Grab your camera, switch to Live View and hit Record.