Even 10 years ago, to receive each type of content, a certain type of filming equipment was required, for a photo – a camera, for video – a camcorder. But at some point, one of the manufacturers added a video recording function to the camera. From that moment on, everything started spinning and it started.
Video recording became possible due to the transition from film cameras to digital. An analog image could be converted into a set of zeros and ones. Adding a video recording function was only a matter of time.
“Hey look what I have”
When the first compact cameras with 0.3 and 1.3 megapixels appeared, they did not yet have a video function. They were able to take photos of extremely mediocre quality.
Today, budget smartphones can shoot much better than cameras 15 years ago.
Video shooting appeared later and was perceived by most users as “oh look, my camera can shoot video!” Cell phones of that time not only didn’t know how to shoot video and photos, but they also didn’t have built-in cameras, and the screens were mostly black and white. However, the video was filmed and very actively, then this task was performed by video cameras with a palm grip, recording on film or already on digital.
Video also left much to be desired: low detail, high noise, shaky picture. But none of that mattered at the time – you had a video you made and it was cool. It was a real home video.
Everything changes when he comes… Canon 5D Mark 2
Things changed in 2008, when the Canon 5D Mark 2 replaced the Canon 5D SLR. This was the second revision of the camera, the main innovation of which was the addition of a movie function. By modern standards, the shooting was not very good. Slow manual focus, only FullHD support, although at that time it was cool.
In 2010, the final episode of the sixth season of the popular television series House M.D. was filmed on a Canon 5D Mark II SLR camera, and this became known after the release of the series.
Then all the experts unanimously joked: “Now, to make the picture more “cinematic” you need to use a camera.” Jokes aside, but since then this camera model has been used for commercial video filming. The functionality was scanty and therefore the enthusiasts downloaded the Magic Lantern firmware, which was sharpened purely for video shooting on this model, and then it flooded.
Quantity and size matter
Canon 5D Mark 2 as a video camera had two key advantages – the size of the sensor and the huge fleet of Canon lenses.
It is known that the larger the matrix, the better the image from it. Compared to camcorders of the time, the flagship models had 1/2.33″ sensors, while the Canon 5D Mark 2 offered a 35mm full-frame sensor. If in proportions and sizes, then it is like a little finger nail and a matchbox. We feel it, don’t we?
Canon EF mount lenses have been around since 1987, and over the past three decades, Canon has riveted a huge number of lenses for a variety of tasks, and they, of course, went into action when shooting video. Light lenses with apertures from 1.2 to 2.8 and focal lengths up to 300mm. This was the second blow to the camcorder segment, which made do with a built-in lens with limited options.
But what about us?
Seeing the success of the 5D Mark 2 in video shooting tasks, other manufacturers also did not want to stand aside and began to add a movie function to all models of the middle and upper price segments of their camera models. They all had approximately the same parameters and lens parks. However, it was still very far from comfortable shooting video on SLR cameras.
There remained a large number of problems to be solved. Video resolution grew, cameras had problems focusing, got very hot and had limited video recording time, batteries were melting before our eyes, and the functionality of the video itself was severely limited. Although there were many lenses, they buzzed with focus, had chromatic aberrations and insufficient sharpness for video.
And then the power of competition worked – such players as Nikon, Sony, Panasonic, Fujifilm and even such new players as Blackmagic entered the struggle for this piece of the market. Everyone has succeeded in their own way.
Thanks to this struggle, we now have cool cameras that can shoot 4k / 6k RAW video at 60 frames per second in 10-bit 4:2:2, producing amazing images that were previously only available when shooting in Hollywood. At the same time, each camera is expandable – you can connect external monitors, microphones, recorders, write video directly to a hard drive or even over the air, and at the same time use completely different power sources for the camera itself.
What seemed fantastic 10 years ago is now available to the average user for a fairly reasonable price.
What about video cameras?
But nothing. It seems that when video recording was added to cameras, all manufacturers somehow forgot about classic video cameras. Ordinary camcorders are still on sale. However, they are now, like conventional cameras, going through a period of decline and low demand. On the one hand, the camcorders are supported by smartphones – their capabilities are more than enough for shooting for every day for the average user. On the other hand, they are supported by professional cameras aimed at producing high-quality video content, they offer a huge range of functionality.
So still, a camera or a camcorder? This strict division is outdated. Manufacturers now offer cameras fully charged for video, but these cameras look like cameras. For example, Panasonic GH5s, Sony A7S III or Fujifilm X-H1.
Mirrorless camera Sony Alpha 7 III (ILCE-7M3) Body black
Mirrorless camera Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S Body black
[11.93 MP, 17.3 x 13.0 mm, Live MOS, 160-51200 ISO, 11 fps, Wi-Fi, screen – swivel, touch]
149 999 *
In stores: in 2 stores
Interchangeable lens camera Fujifilm X-H1 Body black
[24.3 MPix, 23.5 x 15.6 mm, X-Trans CMOS III, 200-12800 ISO, 14 fps, Wi-Fi, swivel touch screen]
There are other examples when the model looks like a video camera, completely created for video, but at the same time compatible with camera lenses – Canon C300 Mark 2.
If you look at the line of models on the manufacturer’s website, for example, Fujifilm, then there is no longer a division into video and photo. There is now just “Digital cameras”, and inside the line of cameras in one row, without separation into photo and video. “Universal camera combine” is a name sometimes found on photo forums … or video forums?