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View Full Version : 7D vs. GH-1. Video action sports---any suggestions?



drakewil
10-03-2009, 11:57 AM
Hello to ALL-


I'm about to make the leap. Money in pocket (sub 5K). Projects stacking. If you have guiding words now is the time...

I will be shooting 90% action sports, in cold weather and low-light conditions.

I read about the negative sides to 7D due to Long GOP codec. How big of a problem is this?

Rolling shutter.....? Let's talk.... Has anyone shot any high-speed action with the 7D yet?


Also it seems the 7D is leaning more towards the "still image" world where as the GH-1 may be slightly more on this side of the "video" world....Am I wrong? I enjoy shooting stills, and often do, but the purpose for this camera will be to shoot video 90% of the time.....

You may be thinking......neither.....I'd love to know why.

I enjoy the idea of using superior optics and having interchangeable lens is why I've strayed from Pro-Sumer video cameras on the market.

-Seen the HVX for years, HPX170 had my eye but not lens swappable.

WHERe the heck the the Scarlet already, right?

thanks to ALL-

Wil
Empty Roll productions
B'ham

drakewil
10-03-2009, 11:58 AM
Hello to ALL-


I'm about to make the leap. Money in pocket (sub 5K). Projects stacking. If you have guiding words now is the time...

I will be shooting 90% action sports, in cold weather and low-light conditions.

I read about the negative sides to 7D due to Long GOP codec. How big of a problem is this?

Rolling shutter.....? Let's talk.... Has anyone shot any high-speed action with the 7D yet?


Also it seems the 7D is leaning more towards the "still image" world where as the GH-1 may be slightly more on this side of the "video" world....Am I wrong? I enjoy shooting stills, and often do, but the purpose for this camera will be to shoot video 90% of the time.....

You may be thinking......neither.....I'd love to know why.

I enjoy the idea of using superior optics and having interchangeable lens is why I've strayed from Pro-Sumer video cameras on the market.

-Seen the HVX for years, HPX170 had my eye but not lens swappable.

WHERe the heck the the Scarlet already, right?

thanks to ALL-

Wil
Empty Roll productions
B'ham

ydgmdlu
10-03-2009, 12:12 PM
I will be shooting 90% action sports, in cold weather and low-light conditions.
The GH1 is for you. It has a more artifact-free 720p60 mode (which is what you'll want to use for your purposes), and plus it can actually autofocus (with face detection/tracking!) while recording video with the kit lens. The 7D does not do continuous autofocus while recording.


I read about the negative sides to 7D due to Long GOP codec. How big of a problem is this?It's not that big of a problem. Occasionally, you might see some compression artifacts that are almost imperceptible in casual viewing. Editing might be slightly more tedious. But that's all. The GH1 also uses long GOP; AVCHD is long GOP.


Rolling shutter.....? Let's talk.... Has anyone shot any high-speed action with the 7D yet?Rolling shutter is not at all an issue on the GH1 in 60p mode. We've speculated that it's the same on the 7D. In the 24p modes, the rolling shutter performance appears to be identical between the two cameras, from recent tests. The rolling shutter in 24p is unsuitable for high-speed action.


Also it seems the 7D is leaning more towards the "still image" world where as the GH-1 may be slightly more on this side of the "video" world....Am I wrong?It's complicated, but long story short: You are correct.


WHERe the heck the the Scarlet already, right?It's several more months away. RED is supposed to release a schedule this month.

designbydave
10-03-2009, 12:27 PM
A few advantages of the GH1 that may be applicable

- Swiveling LCD screen, for getting shots with the camera in unusual places
- Much lighter, maybe 1/3rd the body weight. This could be very important if you want to carry or mount the camera on what-ever sport it is.
- Auto focus with the kit lens in video mode.
- cheaper

Main negative about the GH1 would probably be the issue of motion artifacts in video mode, especially 1080 24p mode. Although I have shot a few things and have yet to see any issues. Take a look at this (which was shot at 720 60p mode)

6063102

Cassius
10-03-2009, 01:04 PM
The GH1 doesn't have a recording limit. I don't know if you'll be doing continuous shooting, but that's kind of a big deal if you do.

ydgmdlu
10-03-2009, 01:09 PM
The GH1 doesn't have a recording limit. I don't know if you'll be doing continuous shooting, but that's kind of a big deal if you do.
Oh yeah, I forgot about that one. That'll definitely be an advantage for sports videography.

ryansheffer
10-03-2009, 01:10 PM
The GH1 doesn't have a recording limit. The GH1 has autofocus.

The picture quality is far superior on the 7d purely due to the codec. The 7d has far better compression. (Before people get mad, I have owned both, recently sold my GH1)

Do not trust the GH1 compressed footage you see on the internet. The GH1's codec is a major issue. If you are shooting action sports your GH1 footage will lose nearly all detail. When the subject is not moving fast the GH1 does an amazing job, but the codec does not hold up to motion. I really wanted it to, but sadly it does not.

ydgmdlu
10-03-2009, 01:12 PM
The picture quality is far superior on the 7d purely due to the codec.
What about the sensor?


Do not trust the GH1 compressed footage you see on the internet. The GH1's codec is a major issue. If you are shooting action sports your GH1 footage will lose nearly all detail. When the subject is not moving fast the GH1 does an amazing job, but the codec does not hold up to motion. I really wanted it to, but sadly it does not.
Did you also find this to be a problem in the 720p60 mode?

Martti Ekstrand
10-03-2009, 01:27 PM
If you are shooting action sports your GH1 footage will lose nearly all detail. When the subject is not moving fast the GH1 does an amazing job, but the codec does not hold up to motion. I really wanted it to, but sadly it does not.

Oh yeah?

http://vimeo.com/groups/gh1/videos/5966843

Stephen Mick
10-03-2009, 01:36 PM
Can't we just leave the "definitive" camera judgments based solely on opinion out of this?

I've shot with both cameras. I've seen great footage from both cameras. I've seen crap-tastic footage from both cameras (codec mud vs. aliasing).

The only real way to make an educated decision about what will work best for you is to try them both. With the OP's budget of $5K, he can afford to spend a small outlay of money to rent both (www.lensrentals.com), and make the decision that's right for him.

--SM

ryansheffer
10-03-2009, 01:38 PM
Martti that stuff looks great. I've just had such inconsistent experience. Some shots turn out great and then the one that I love looks like mush. It was frustrating. I had a really bad experience in Africa filming cheetahs where the camera just couldn't keep up with the animals.

Maybe I am being harsh because I had some bad experiences, but I can guarantee you that the 7d will perform better when it comes to retaining detail with fast motion.

720p60 does a lot better on the GH1 for maintaining detail but I still had issues. Specifically the mud happens much much more often if anything is underexposed in the shot.

I just did a side by side between the 5d mark II and 7d and found that the 7d, though slightly noisier holds up nearly as well to underexposure and has absolutely no vertical banding or sensor artifacting that happens due to underexposure.

For what it's worth I feel the 7d is head and shoulders a better camera if you are willing to overlook continuous autofocus and the recording limit.

ydgmdlu
10-03-2009, 01:41 PM
It is indeed a tricky decision if one is forced to choose between the two.

But perhaps a proper video camera is a better choice for him. Fewer compromises. But he did want the interchangeable lenses.

Stephen Mick
10-03-2009, 01:49 PM
(Thank you, Ryan.)

Though I have to say, my experiences have been very different from yours. I've shared the clip below a few times, but I think it has value here as well. It may not be skateboarding or guys wearing bat-suits throwing themselves off cliffs, but there is plenty of motion in the footage. I never saw any obvious evidence of the codec breaking down, all shot at 720/60p.

6636855

Now, having just had my 7D for a few days, I'm still learning, tweaking and tuning my settings. But the initial side-by-side GH1 and 7D testing in 720/60p hasn't shown there to be much of an advantage for the 7D, if at all. Granted, that moto-cross clip looks amazing, which is why I'm chalking up the performance of my 7D to "user ignorance" so far.

All I can say to the OP is that, in my experience, either camera is capable of producing amazing footage in 720/60p for 24p slow-mo. Best to try before you commit to one over the other, if at all possible.

drakewil
10-04-2009, 06:24 PM
THANKS TO ALL SR. MEMBERS AND others who contributed.

I will be going with the GH1 most likely. I appreciate all of your comments and time; helping me understand the seemingly complex and make a more 'educated decision'.

Wil Drake
Empty Roll productions
B'ham

mikecazzx
01-23-2010, 10:55 PM
A few advantages of the GH1 that may be applicable

- Swiveling LCD screen, for getting shots with the camera in unusual places
- Much lighter, maybe 1/3rd the body weight. This could be very important if you want to carry or mount the camera on what-ever sport it is.
- Auto focus with the kit lens in video mode.
- cheaper

Main negative about the GH1 would probably be the issue of motion artifacts in video mode, especially 1080 24p mode. Although I have shot a few things and have yet to see any issues. Take a look at this (which was shot at 720 60p mode)

6063102
The hang gliding footage looks nice, but you can see the issues. Aliasing on the wings, focus issues, muddy background blur behind the flyer etc.