The Canon 5D Mark-II

In the DSLR dance around HD video lately, the new Canon 5D is the king: full 1080/30p and mic input, among other niceties. It seems to not have most of the problems found on the Nikon D90 (like exposure jumps while panning), and rolling shutter and focusing seems not to be a huge problem either. In other words, this is one cool camera, with amazing video quality. I just hope that its A/V output can work while recording so we can use external monitors.

My only problem with the camera, and I mean, really the only problem, is the fact that it captures video at 30.00 fps instead of 29.97 and 23.976. This means no 24p, making it useless to indie filmmakers, and also, the 30/1001 difference in the 30p frame rate creates ghosting when imported into a video editor like Vegas, because editors resample instead of re-timing (and then just resample the audio instead of the video). And this is a huge problem, believe me. It’s bad because most people won’t know about this and would drop the files in the timeline as-is. And when their (usually NTSC) output is ready, they won’t understand why the hell there’s ghosting in the final footage.

I hope that the photography department of Canon gets a clue and offer us 29.97 (NTSC), 25.00 (PAL), 24.00 (film) and 23.976 (IVTC film) fps choice. This is very easy to fix with a firmware upgrade, so I hope Canon listens. Unfortunately, from what we’ve seen in the past (e.g. with PF24’s lack of attributes), Canon doesn’t actually listen.

If Canon was to fix this small inconvenience, I think JBQ’s current Canon 5D would be at eBay right now, in search of some capital towards the new 5D.

Update: I just called Canon about the 5D-MII at 1-800-828-4040 (in US, press the 3rd option) and the guy was very helpful. When I mentioned that I needed REAL 29.97 (instead of 30.00 fps), and 25, 24, and 23.976 fps options, and how important that is for proper video editing (29.97), and for indie filmmakers (24p), he wrote everything down to the company’s INTRANET feedback form. I suggest everyone interested in that camera doing so too! It’s a free call, it only took me 2 minutes, and they were very receptive for the feedback!

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