August 29, 2016 at 8:45PM, Edited August 29, 8:47PM


What's a good digital camera to start with for filmmaking? (Specifically music videos)

I've been making music videos using my iPhone for a couple of years and I'd like to be more serious about it and I'm thinking of getting a camera for my videos. The problem is I don't really know where to start. So far what I've learned is I should probably start with a digital camera to master my angles and focus and once I achieve that, I can move on to film. Since I'll be making music videos, I don't really need a camera with the best audio quality since I won't be recording any sound while filming. If anyone has any suggestions for a camera with great image and color quality (that doesn't cost a fortune, at the most $2k maybe ?) I'd appreciate any help.
Note: I don't own any other filmmaking equipment (yet) and any suggestions for other equipment for making music video projects (for lighting, etc.) would also be very much welcomed.


I’d say if you’re starting from scratch, and you have 2 grand to play with… maybe try a few things… from smallest sensor to the biggest… but all GREAT sensors.

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera (around $600 used on eBay). Get some old used Nikon and Canon fd lenses on eBay.

—Panasonic GH4… runs about a grand these days. You can adapt almost any lens to it. Has a really good internal 200mbps HD codec and internal 4k and 10-bit 4k output.

—Sony a6300… about a grand… pretty good HD codec up to 120fps… and internal 4k up to 30p. A $1000 brand new, but used ones are popping up a bit cheaper.

—A used Sony A7S (the low light king) used on eBay for around $1400 to $1700 (it also has 4k output)

I really don’t know much about Nikon video capabilities, but these are GREAT cameras that you should play with… and can handle MANY different lenses with adapters.

August 29, 2016 at 10:36PM, Edited August 29, 10:37PM

Dennis Nagelkirk
Write. Film. Edit. Draw. Paint.

Many music videos use slow motion shots, so I would look at Panasonic or Sony cameras that are in your price range.

August 30, 2016 at 5:18AM

Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer

You should be able to scoop up a GH4 for around $700 used. There are lots of offerings as many people want to get ready for the new GH5 which will be out around January 2017.

A G7 would have similar quality and can be bought even cheaper.

Another option is to go for the GX85 while there are several minus points I find the color is better than the GH4 and with Panasonic lenses you can have dual image stabilization.

August 30, 2016 at 11:25AM

Cary Knoop

I shoot BMPCC but I would recommend the Sony A6300 or its new big brother the A6500... I am Blown away by the quality of those lil cameras especially when you shoot with SLOG2 and you know how to grade that footage. And either Camera is under 2K. So i'd say get the A6300 and a cage for it. some cheap nikon lens with an adapter and a cage for the camera and go make movie magic!

March 30, 2017 at 7:16PM

Wentworth Kelly
DP/Colorist/Drone Op

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