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07-07-2015, 10:00 AM   #1
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need video help - four camera choices

I've been asked to shoot some video at my niece's wedding in August. Nothing professional is expected so I can provide decent work without fear of disappointing anyone - thank goodness! It will be inside a decently-lit converted gymnasium with south-facing windows; hopefully dark curtains will not be in play.

Anyway I have four options/cameras to do the job.
  • current 'best' = NX300 and fast prime (tip screen but no IS, focus set to manual)
  • current Pentax = K-r and fast prime (true SR but huge files@ HD720 max)
  • old camcorder = Panasonic miniDV, 10+ years old
  • Pentax update (K-s1 assumed) = better video resolution + compression, 'fake' SR
  • my phone? No, just.. no

I'm not trying to use the event to justify a camera update.. but it's important to me that I provide something nice for them. I'm assuming a K-s1 because my budget isn't at a great spot until the 10-17 and 17-70 depart I would need to buy soon so I can get the hang of its controls.

I dislike the NX300 autofocus because it updates so often, so manual focus at 1080/30 would provide the best results of what I own. Lenses would be pretty fast, 16mm f/2.4 and 30mm f/2, both of which do quite well. But no SR! The camcorder is really outclassed by now - plus it's been a while since I used it, so the controls would be unfamiliar (and who knows of battery life?). The K-r would be smooth and pretty but massive files means bring every card I own.

So for budget reasons let's call it a showdown between K-s1 and NX300. I'll research bitrates but I'm not sure I will find enough to sway the result - so I believe this is SR (K-s1) vs really small (nx300) (vs. MOV on k-r)

Also note that "both" is a valid option, K-r and nx300!
Any feedback on the best way to go, or what I'm missing on this, would be appreciated - by me and my neice!


07-07-2015, 01:53 PM   #2
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K-r: Huge files are not a real problem, in fact they will help you because I assume you will be editing and then saving out as a finished video? So you can choose your [re]compression codec then.
07-07-2015, 03:13 PM   #3
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I think you should be able to offset the lack of SR in the NX300 by using a good tripod or monopod with a video head. Actually, even if you have an in-camera or in-lens stabilization option, you really should use a tripod or monopod. A wedding in a large venue is an ideal situation.

I have been using a Benro A48FDS4 monopod with S4 video head for my GH4 and it is quite excellent. Actually it is a bit of overkill since I don't have a big cage and heavy monitors and all that, just a camera with lens and mic. If I could do it again, I would probably get the smaller/lighter A38FDS2 with the S2 video head. There are other monopod options, but a video monopod with the little feet will definitely help stabilize along the vertical axis, while allowing smooth pans.

Good sound will make a huge difference. Wireless mics are expensive, but you could put a lavalier mic on the groom, and a Zoom H1 in his pocket, and you would be able to get their wedding vows and whatever else. Not sure there is an easy way to get a mic and recorder on the bride without it sticking out and looking wierd. You don't need ridiculously high audio fidelity, just get the mic closer to the action. You would need to sync the audio and video in post.
07-07-2015, 04:56 PM   #4
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Thanks folks!

Steve - I'll have two 16G cards plus maybe another, so I'll look into how much footage that works out to. I had better charge the 2nd battery! And a 32G card is cheaper than a K-s1 too

Tanzer - Nice that the NX300 has a tip screen. I can max out tripod height and tip the screen down; that can be the 'B' camera that shoots most of the time for cake cutting, toasts and such.

---------- Post added 07-07-15 at 16:02 ----------

from IR review
the Pentax K-r yields very large file sizes: just one minute of 720p video can very easily produce file sizes on the order of 250MB or more, depending on subject matter.

so 300M/minute = 30000M (32G) 100 minutes... that should do fine

07-16-2015, 04:56 PM   #5
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Audio is a big one, and I'd work hard to get that sorted. Lav mic as has been suggested would be good.
You'll want SR if you're moving, but if it's a static shot, then you won't be needing it.


You'd want a wide and a tight shot, wide to cover your butt really.


ideas:
https://www.pinterest.com/pin/166492517450349880/
https://www.pinterest.com/pin/166492517450349887/


Set a gopro to medium or narrow and it'll look like a DSLR shot it.


I wouldn't update a Pentax with a video project in mind personally.
Newer models are much better, but I'd lament the loss of useable SR personally.
07-17-2015, 03:27 AM - 1 Like   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by jimr-pdx Quote
I've been asked to shoot some video at my niece's wedding in August.
Suggestion,.. RUN !!!
( I survived the weddings industry, sort of still sane,... )
07-19-2015, 03:11 AM   #7
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The 720p worries me, but apart from that I would use the K-r as a run around camera... For when you are using the camera handheld. The NX300 has to be on a tripod or so, even if you hold the tripod up in the air (it can work wonders, if you hold it right). That's how I shot a concert, and I'm quite happy with the results (K-5 handheld, taking shorter clips (5 minute limitation anyway), usually 18 or 50mm, moving around, etc., and a NEX 5 and GoPro on tripods and wide (from left and right)). Maybe the K-r with a 50mm should give you nice results, and when walking around an 18mm or so... (though I find the 50mm works well when walking around). Do try it up front, compare the results, and if you want to shoot handheld... practice practice practice. Follow around your wife/kids while walking around, etc. Follow movements in general, even when standing.

You could, when you run out of space then switch to the NX300, sitting on a tripod (but the tripod in your hands, there are guides on how to convert cheap tripods to glidecams...). It would look rather goofy, but if you don't mind...
08-09-2015, 11:42 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by jimr-pdx Quote
I've been asked to shoot some video at my niece's wedding in August.
Anyway I have four options/cameras to do the job.
  • current 'best' = NX300 and fast prime (tip screen but no IS, focus set to manual)
  • current Pentax = K-r and fast prime (true SR but huge files@ HD720 max)
  • old camcorder = Panasonic miniDV, 10+ years old
  • Pentax update (K-s1 assumed) = better video resolution + compression, 'fake' SR
  • my phone? No, just.. no
Update: wedding day!
  • I had five choices: my Q (two, in fact)!
  • NX300 departed, K-s1 arrived
  • phone is now an iPhone! Still... no.

I'll be carrying the K-s1 and a prime or two. One Q will sit high on a tripod doing video, the other will do a wide view in interval-shot mode. That definitely covers the ground with good image quality and no pressure to remember how to use the camcorder - or worry about how the battery has aged in eight years.

08-09-2015, 12:15 PM   #9
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You'll need the AC adapter for the Q, batteries drain very quickly when used for video. Also, the Q get's hot I found.
08-10-2015, 01:48 AM - 1 Like   #10
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You want to handhold the K-S1? That's a bad idea, unless you've got a glidecam.
08-10-2015, 01:42 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by kadajawi Quote
You want to handhold the K-S1? That's a bad idea, unless you've got a glidecam.


Meaning Pentax has sensor stabilisation, but it doesn't work during video mode anymore.
They offer Movie SR instead, a software stabilisation option that doesn't work particularly well.
It's generally safer to turn this off and stabilise in post, but at all times it's better to capture more stable footage in the first place.


Sony, Olympus, Panasonic, Canon and Nikon all offer physical options for stabilisation that do work, either via inbuilt sensor stabilisation, or via stabilisation in the lens itself.
There are few lenses that have in built stabilisation for Pentax, given the manufacturer assumes Pentax will stabilise in camera.
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