Thomas Fletcher and Gary Adcock's thorough camera comparison chart can help you choose what format to use for your production, whatever the size.
The internet is a wonderful place of nearly infinite information. But sometimes you just need a quick answer, and there's too much information out there to sort through. Maybe you are prepping a job with a lot of Steadicam and you want to know the weights of the cameras you are choosing between quickly. Or you have a big slow motion job coming up and you want to see what all of your options are. You used to be able to go to the American Cinematographers Guide, but unfortunately, camera technology has outpaced a single reference book.
Luckily, Chicago-based Thomas Fletcher and Gary Adcock have taken the time to put together a master comparison chart of all the commonly used cameras. It includes not only the objective facts but also a brief summary of common real-world user feedback. The duo researched by talking to manufacturers, cinematographers, colorists, and rental house techs. Of note: they chose to include 35mm, as it is still a viable format used on a wide variety of projects. It's good to keep 35mm technical specifications in mind when comparing options.
This is a handy guide that all filmmakers should keep around for easy reference.
This is a handy guide that all filmmakers should keep around for easy reference, whether you are considering a new purchase, an upcoming rental, or just like to have a handle on the current camera specs.
Fletcher has done these charts in years past, though for cameras only; this year comes with the welcome addition of cinema zooms. It's been a huge year for lens releases, and, frankly, it's been difficult for many of us to keep track of all the options available when you take both new and vintage glass into account.
The Anamorphic comparison is great for when you want to remind yourself quickly of the technical limitations of a particular set of vintage glass. Frustratingly, the chart lumps "Lomo" into one set and doesn't break them out into the Square Front and Round Front—though since the square front is such an oddball set, it isn't too surprising to see it not make the list.
Here are links to the full charts: