I sold my canon point and shoot video camera (I am more of a still photographer than video) but am intrigued by the new video capabilities of D3100 and D7000. After selling a little more equipment, I will be able to afford both cameras. The question is, which one should I get. I own a D3 and want a backup body as well as a fairly decent video capability. I like the D3100 because it is small, but the D7000 does not seem that much bigger. I like the D7000's stereo audio capability and the fact that it can use older autofocus lenses (my brother-in-law) has a D90 and an older 50mm 1.4 (the D3100 will not autofocus with it). The D3100 is a compelling product at the price with a kit lens, but is the video that much different than the D7000? Does the sensor difference have that much of an impact on the video quality? Is the autofocus that much better in video mode on the D7000 than the D3100? I know that the D7000 has not come out, but some of the more technologically savvy Nikonians out there please help! Thanks in advance! Ed.
Check out Thom Hogan's blog entry from today - he is indicating bad jello effect on the D3100. Seems he is shooting with one already. Www.bythom.com
Let's hope the D7000 solves this as well as the D3S implementation. I thought I understood the key to solving jello is faster processing horsepower, which the D7000 should have in spades over the D3100?
I am looking forward to video. This will be my first DSLR with it.
Thanks Steve. Well at least now I know to wait until the D7000 comes out to see if it is any better than the D3100. I did not notice any of the jello effect from the Chase Jarvis demo of the D7000, but then again, they were using steady cams and may have had sophisticated correction software in post? Thanks for the quick response. Ed.
#3. "RE: D7000 or D3100....long rant" In response to Reply # 2 Sat 02-Oct-10 06:17 AM by km6xz
St Petersburg, RU
Jarvis also did a video before the D90 came out which compelled hundreds of thousands of people to buy the D90 who were not even that interested in stills. The fact that there was no Jell-o effect was the same reason panning artifacts are not seen in 35mm 24 frame film: knowing how to shoot a video/film that tells a story intended while working within the range of technical limitations. Shoot well and skillfully and there is no Jell-o effect with any camera, plan scenes like they mean something and be in control. This is why the whole video craze now it going to sell lots of gear, and ensure lots of upgrades and billions spent but most results in frustration. Shooting a compelling video that is worth watching is not much related to equipment, it is the skill and creativity of the production team. Yes, team, Jarvis, even in his apparent Gonzo style of finished product has a whole production team of people who know what they are doing and have individual expertise.
I have been around production of commercial video, film and music recording almost all my life and every one of the products that resulted in getting attention and meant something was done by a team of skilled craftsmen. I have never seen a totally amateur one man operation pull it off, despite the claims that new cheap equipment can make anyone into a cinematographer. It did not happen in the 90s when cheap digital recording gear was bought by the millions of units by people who believed that all they lacked in getting to be stars was money for pro gear. That is the same thinking that makes people ask, when you show them a candid you took that is really attractive(even if they are not in person) and they asked "what camera are you using, it must be very good?" It is the same mentality but this time it is the amateur video dabbler who is asking the question. The point is, the new cheap gear has some great specs and if specs meant anything that would be significant. But specs mean nothing to the finished product. None of those million of home recording artists produced much of interest and most faded away and sought other hobbies, some think the same way about video now that they did before with audio production. A skilled team could take this gear, or old pro gear and turn out solid interesting work. When I was active in recording, at one one time there are about 8 studio teams that produced 80% of the hit records, out of thousands of studios. When the home recording hit it big, the ratio of hits to wannabes expanded exponentially where millions were trying but even fewer produced anything of interest. If it was easy and did not require rare skills everyone could do it but they tried an couldn't. Fast forward to 2010. Everyone thinks they can produce a video that people want to watch. What a waste of energy, money and enthusiasm. If someone has the talent, a very rare quality, it is easier than ever to get funding for real projects. They do not have to invest anything in gear.
The whole point is, for the Jarvis team, and lots of other skilled teams, a D90, or a Kodak 8mm (ask George Lukas what his first notable film was shot with) is not a limitation that prevents work you are willing to watch.
Want to be happy with your videos? Forget specs and apparent limitations, learn how to get what you want despite gear, but be prepared to spend a GREAT more time than the general impression by outsiders think goes into something worth watching. Also, any weak link in your production that make to the final product will negate all the work. For example field audio. There is no such thing as a video camera recording acceptable sound with camera mounted mics so the angst over no built in stereo mics proves and such concerned future buyer of this gear is in for real frustration. Syncing sound and image as if they flow together and keep pushing the story along is a skill few think about or believe is important solely BECAUSE it is done so well in all the theatrical and commercial productions they have ever seen. Sure, a cheap $700 camera might seem to an outsider as the missing link in their becoming the next Jarvis, but a peek behind the scenes at the production environment, and post production systems will make the $700 investment appear as it really is; a rain drop in a flood. A few people point to a few productions or small segments of TV programs done with 5DmII to prove their point that DSLR is ready for prime time, and just like the person asking what camera took the nice photo, those same people did not see the additional hassle a video post team was subjected to to edit those short segments into a coherent production. Video cameras look nothing like DSLRs not only because of shape and plan-form but because serious video capture has to integrate into a production system of standards in clocks, color references, time code etc locking of various capture sources, plus audio sync and external audio chain with additional team members. That is what makes a video production camera what it is. If DSLR sensors are going to be a factor in video production it will be when those are integrated into a video camera with all those standard signals and sync interconnections are used that allow its output to integrate well into a production stream.
There seems to be one common trait with the new wannabe video producer/directors, they want to believe that equipment can bypass the requirement of knowing about the subject extensively. Those who DO excel have something in common, a drive and passion that has caused them to have read every book in the library on the subjects related, to attend every class, volunteer for every menial job on a documentary production or student films long before it became the current fad. And most did not attend formal education in the topic, or if they did, it was only after an advanced expertise was already developed. What set apart the few successful people is not their expertise or raw talent, it was the ability to invent new solutions to problems that were unique to each production environment. No approached to scenes were the same because conditions were not the same. A school that teaches a craft actually puts a person with those invention skills behind by teaching techniques, which are traditions all based on past routine situations. At the high end of anything, there is no routine.
The claims by beginners that they NEED HD and 60fps for their work is laughable. Now one in 100 even have the production post chain to even see properly what they captured, or an audience. It is a buzz word for novices who want to sound like they are on the inside instead of showing how clueless they are. No video, or sound recording was judged by the tech specs of the media, it is the results and perception created within the audience. A compelling story and imagery are not improved or diminished by the presentation layer. Not in any art.
If you are only wanting vacation memory captures, get a mini cam-corder, they are cheap, work great and are self contained, true value marvels.
#4. "RE: D7000 or D3100....long rant" In response to Reply # 3 Sun 03-Oct-10 05:26 AM by hpcphoto
Wow Stan! What a response. Thanks for your honesty and candor. So I have been taking video for over 30 years. I am certainly not a beginner, but I do need to learn quite a bit still. Every year, just for fun, my 5 kids, spouse, and I usually make a nerdy production. It's more of a family bonding experience than Gone With the Wind, but it works. I make all the edits in Final Cut. I know I could shoot this type of video with an iPhone (and maybe we will this year), i have always been intrigued by being able to control DOF for dramatic effects. Low natural light shooting is always a plus as well. I share your frustration with "the camera" appearing to novices as the end all explanation for quality. I have to admit that love gear and to a certain extent we all do or we would not be here. Having gear that you like to shoot does help psychologically with one thing: it gives you the impetus to get out and shoot. Tomorrrow I'll take my D3 and 70-200 and get some killer shots of the kids playing soccer. I could do this with an iPhone, but the images would not be the same. The same, in my opinion, applies to video. Maybe chase can shoot a great video with a D7000 or an iPhone, but perhaps he could shoot an even better video, or at least less technically limited video, with a red or IMAX camera. Not saying that I am even in the same ball park as chase, but the canon point and shoot camcorder was barely ever used. I use my D3 all the time. So my question still remains. Would I be wasting money buying a D7000 not just for video, but as a more compact travel camera and video camera? I just never have been satisfied with the quality of point and shoots. Or should I just get the D3100 and as you said learn to work around the limitations to get decent video. Thanks for your interest and maybe you can add to the conversation. I'm sure that we may be helping others who are having the same or a similar dilemma. Thanks. Ed
#5. "RE: D7000 or D3100....long rant" In response to Reply # 4
"Would I be wasting money buying a D7000 not just for video, but as a more compact travel camera and video camera?"
This is exactly what I plan to do, in conjunction with my D700 and my Sony 550CX. (I think Stan's rant was a bit intense, addressing issues that were not found in your original message. And it also focuses on only one area of video production, one which I don't happen to be interested in ). I would like to spend a month of so working with video on the D7000 before I take it on an extended workshop later this fall. Hope it ships in time! Best, D.