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Clean HDMI Will Be Coming to the Canon 7D

10.15.12 @ 1:38PM Tags : , , , , , ,

Good things continue to happen for the Canon 7D. With a rapidly changing camera landscape (and far too many options to choose from), many people are still holding on to their trusty DSLRs — and that includes quite a few 7Ds. Just recently the first alpha of Magic Lantern was made available for the camera, and now it looks like clean HDMI may not be too far off. It’s been available for other Canon DSLRs through the firmware hack for some time now, but this is the first testing that has been done for this camera. Check out the video below to see the first results in action.

Here is what ML developer  said about the video:

This is a test video where i filmed my Samsung LCD showing Canon EOS 7D HDMI output while recording. Test subject is the “Clear overlays” feature, that disables all paintings on HDMI output.

It’s not quite clear what the final output for the HDMI will be, but the clean HDMI for the other Canon cameras did not give a full output. Here is that explanation from the Magic Lantern wiki site:

While these devices are capable of recording 1080p 422 signals, the HDMI output from the Canon HDMI is limited to 1620×1080 (3:2) while the camera is not recording. This requires the user to crop the footage from the external recorder to 1620×910 (16:9) and then resize it to either 1280×720 (79%) or 1920×1080 (119%).

I’m not 100% sure if this will be the exact case with this camera (someone can correct me if this is wrong). The big difference is that the 7D outputs a 1280 x 720 image while recording to the internal CF card, instead of the 720 x 480 of the Canon 5D, 60D, etc., so you could theoretically recording two places at once. Clean HDMI doesn’t all of a sudden turn your camera into a RAW recording device, but the extra color space it provides (4:2:2 vs. 4:2:0) can be helpful for many situations, including green screen work.

If you haven’t seen it, here’s a video of the newly released alpha firmware working on the camera:

I’m sure it’s possible we may get even more capabilities once the 7D is really unlocked (since it has two image processors instead of one), but for now you can get all of the basic Magic Lantern features in the alpha release. Head on over to the ML site using the link below if you’d like to try out the firmare hack for your Canon 7D.

Link: First 7D alpha released! — Magic Lantern Site


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Description image 16 COMMENTS

  • This is the reward for us Canon 7D owners being held in the shadows… ok too dramatic, but that’s effing awesome!

  • Well… for me, if it ain’t 1920X1080, it ain’t “awesome”.

    • It still has a horizontal resolution of 1080, and any 1920X1080 video with crop marks has a lower vertical resolution than 1920. so If I’m correct you could just add crop marks to the image in post to make it 16:9.

      • Unfortunately Logan, the crop marks are on the sides (pillar bars) so it’s the horizontal resolution that is being cut.

      • Logan, I think you got your horizontal and vertical backwards. 1920 is a horizontal size, not a vertical one as you indicate. And 1080 is vertical, not horizontal.

  • Even with all the new cams that have come out since the 7D, I’m still pleased with the results I get from mine. Of course I will move to a higher quality camera at some point but the Magic Lantern firmware is definitely a plus. I still love my 7D.

  • I wonder what applications this may have for those of use who’d like to use 2x anamorphic adapters. 4:3 or 3:2 would be quite ideal, honestly. And if the camera could record it internally (and not have to record it through the HDMI) it would be so god damned great. 3.55:1 is interesting but damn it do I hate to crop the sides to get 2.66 or 2.35.

  • So I’m a little new to this – are you able to get Clean HDMI (like the Nikon D600/Sony A99 have built in) with other Canon cameras that are compatible with Magic Lantern (5D Mark ii and iii)? Thanks!

  • Bottom line, it’s still a hack, and I’m just not comfortable shooting critical video production with a hacked camera. I speak from experience having a hacked GH1. If you want a clean HDMI out, buy a camera that comes stock with that feature.

  • If someone does a hack of the 1D Mark IV, then I will definitely give a donation.

  • I will wait for a through beta testing. Don’t want to void my EW.

  • “(someone can correct me if this is wrong). The big difference is that the 7D outputs a 1280 x 720 image while recording to the internal CF card, instead of the 720 x 480 ”

    The 7D actual outputs a 1920×1080 interlaced 60fps signal to HDMI during recording but that includes the letterbox around the image, the image in the external display/recorder only takes up 1620×910 of that 1920×1080 signal. So in post you need to crop out that letterbox which means blowing up the image to 119%.

    These guys did it quite sometime ago with their own homebrew software (called syndicate 7D), the footage may soften a bit due to the enlarging of the image in post but you get twice more diverse pixel colors with 4:2:2 ( and it allows for green screen and it’s easier to blend in cgi like the car in their sample video.

    Not as good as D800′s HDMI out but still very usable.