DCP 154: Canon's New 4K Video Cameras - XC10 and C300 Mark II
The new Canon XC10 4K camcorder and the C300 Mark II (now with 4K internal recording) were announced just prior to the start of NAB 2015. I share my thoughts on these two new cameras in episode 154 of the Digital Convergence Podcast.
The Canon XC10 has elicited a wide range of emotional reactions from pros. Some call it a piece of junk, others bemoan the lack of XLR audio inputs. Many are totally bewildered by the lack of interchangeable lenses. However, what these pros forget is that this camera is not for them.Canon, calling the XC10 a camcorder, is targeting multimedia professionals. According to Canon: "The Canon XC10 is a true hybrid camera, with 4K and HD video capabilities, and includes the ability to shoot and share still image files. This one camera can be an ideal multi-media tool for journalists, web shooters, and many others. A one-inch size,12-million pixel Canon CMOS sensor for stills and video provides excellent quality, and contributes to a compact design."
The XC10 may not appeal to everyone. Personally, I'm glad to see this camera break the old video-capable DSLR mode. For the type of video I shoot, I can see this camera as a good fit for my needs. I shoot training videos where a cinematic look is not important. I shoot a lot of still photography for step-by-step how-to's. The ability to lift stills from 4K footage in-camera is compelling. Canon suggests, too, that the compact all-in-one design is ideal for drone applications. At 2.3 pounds, it will take more than a Phantom to hoist it! If it came with an interface to allow remote operation and video streaming back to the remote controller while it was on that drone - that would be wonderful! But I digress... I can't wait to get my hands on one!
At $2,499 some argue that a Panasonic GH4 would be a better buy. Again, it depends. If interchangeable lenses are needed for the kind of video you shoot, then certainly the GH4 is the way to go. I think a lot of multimedia pros are going to find the convenience of the all-in-one design suitable. Canon touts the XC10 as being a great B or C cam and claims the footage will mix well with their higher end EOS Cinema cameras like the C100, C300, or C500. Until the XC10 ships, it's all conjecture at this point. It's a promising, weird looking, little camera.
The Canon C300 has been updated - now available as the C300 Mark II. It can now record 4K internally. The EOS Cinema series produces beautiful images for sure. However, some–myself included–wonder if the $15,999 price tag is justified considering that a Sony FS7 - similarly spec'ed (and better in some respects) – is available for almost half the cost of a C300 Mark II.
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