Monthly Archives: January 2011

1st video!

Been working long hours, and decided at about 4am on Saturday night, that I’d wake up at 6, (a whole two hours later) to let out some stress by seeing the sunrise. So I decided to wake up early, packed my gear, and went on a video adventure. I’m going to amend my Rebel T2i review . So far I’ve been very pleased with the camera. Battery life does concern me however. Going through an 8 gig SD card, it drained my battery down by 1 out of three bars. I don’t know how accurate it is, but assuming I fill up a 16gig card (roughly 40minutes of 1080p 30fps footage), I would have nearly depleted my battery. So I think if I’m going to pursue this with any degree of seriousness, I may have to fork down for a few items.

One thing I found difficult was focusing. Since it’s all manual, I find it hard to see the lcd w/o having have to zoom in. So If I line up some clients, I may fork over the cash for a zacuto Z-Finder magnifier. The problem? It’s about 400 bucks. But It will help with focusing.

I did get a chance to play with my indislider mini, which acts as a portable rail system. The only problem I’ve had is I’ve had to fight my ballhead grip for my tripod. It wasn’t meant to handle the weight + the camera etc, so next time I’ll be more prepared and mount it on two tripods, or at the very least a mini stand. Doesn’t make it portable by any stretch of the imagination, but it will provide me with more stable shots. But it’s the cheapest most affordable rails system on the market aside from the do it yourself types. My only gripe with it is, 21 inches is way to short. I would prefer it it was 30inches or so. If I outgrow this system, I may attempt a do it yourself slider right. But it’s built very solid. I did have to spend about 30 bucks to get adaptors and bushings to convert the stanard 1/4th inch screws to 3/8 inch screws to mount to my tripod.

The results are below:

I can’t wait to start using other lenses in my lineup and work on mini music/videos, short stories. But one step at a time =)

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Canon Rebel T2i Review

So I started my little camera hobby about five years ago with a dinky little Canon hybrid point and shoot. The S1IS.
Since then, I’ve pretty much owned with or shot/used the entirety of the Canon SLR lineup since then. (With the exclusion of the 40D, 50D, and 60Ds ). Now I’ve gone back full circle, and went back to owning a rebel body. The Canon T2i It’s the camera I recommend to people when they ask me “what kind of entry level camera should I get?”
so I guess I figured I’d put my money where my mouth is! Really, Canon should have just given me this for free so I can advertise it for them =) Yeah right, I wish.

Why would you ask would I do such a thing? The answer is simple, I wanted more video! Yes, I could upgrade to a 1DMark IV But I think my uber expensive camera buying days are over. I just want something cheap! –relatively speaking–

It took me a long while (roughly 1yr or so) to finally jump into the video bandwagon, and I’m looking forward to experimenting with the medium. There’s a lot of room for me to grow with video. In case you missed my 5D Mark II review, it can be read here.

Ok, so now unwrapping the box. IMG_0547

It’s sad to admit, but I’ve opened so many stupid camera boxes, I’m no longer as excited about opening the new box as I should be. I was more giddy that I got a package in the mail! The first thing I noticed is wow, this thing is tiny, light, feels very plastic and cheap. And, did I mention tiny?
I have small Asian hands, and this thing made me feel like I was holding a little toy. Editors note: I have been using giant heavy pro 1D bodies for awhile now, so my perception of what is tiny and small and light may be slightly jaded as I’m used to big heavy ass bulky gear.

The battery is very small and awkward to charge and use (It’s slightly oddly shaped), I wish they stuck with the old NB-2L’s style batteries. Yes, technology has advanced and they’ve mad it smaller and lighter lighter now, but I’m old and I am set on my ways! The second thing I noticed, is if I drop this thing, I bet you it will shatter into a million tiny plastic pieces. Yes it feels that flimsy. And finally, it uses SD cards. I hate SD cards. I have about 40+ gigs of Compact flash cards with a few SD cards for backup (the 1D bodies take both cards, so I use SD as secondary storage). But this T2i uses pure SD cards.

Not really much to say about picture capability since I don’t intend to take any pictures at all with this thing. I’ve tinkered with the controls and it still is the strange rebel controls that I remember. It’s a pain to change the aperture settings, and the viewfinder is tiny. Changing the focus points feels strange and un-natural. Again, I really don’t care if this thing even can take any pictures, I’m more interested in video. The buttons feel flimsy, and when I press them, I’m not quite sure if they are pressed or not. The LCD screen is a 3.0 inch and it’s pretty nice, but there’s something about the 5DMark II’s screen that just yells, “WoW”. This LCD screen is nice, but it just screams “woo”. But not “Wow!” Yes I’m aware that’s a very technical description, but it’s the only way I can describe it.

Video quality is not up to par with the 5D. Mainly due to the smaller sensor size (APS-C) Check out my sensor article for those unfamiliar with the term APS-C size sensor.
ISO performance is, decent, but there’s a lot of grain. Though it claims it can go up to ISO6400, I haven’t used this enough to trust it beyond 1600. Also the other annoying thing about this camera is the ISO ranges can’t be incremented in smaller more granular increments. They’re pretty large, I can’t go to ISO 2000 for instance. I believe it jumps from 1600 to 3200. Which sucks. But really, what can you expect from this camera? So far I’m happy. I now have a camera I can sorta bring to restaurants without having the need to get an extra baby seat. Video tests to come this weekend!