October 5, 2015 at 12:10AM, Edited October 5, 12:13AM

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Which camera to choose - Canon C100 or Panasonic GH4?

Hey! I will be shooting a comedy short film in about a month. It will be mostly day exteriors and interiors. The schools has c100's, but I own a GH4. I'm kind of leaning toward the gh4, especially now that V-log is out, making the image more flexible + 4k + everlasting batteries, and having experience with the camera. I have used the Canon C300 before and know how nice the colors are, but not sure whether I should go with its younger sibling. Has any of you had to use both on set? Thanks!

5 Comments

I use a GH4+SHOGUN as an extra environmental camera to complement my RED cameras. In that role, it's the camera I lock off and leave alone to pick up the static wide shot. However, when it comes to the "A" camera--something that moves with the action, or something that defines the shot by its action--the GH4+SHOGUN combination is just awkward, fragile, and unwieldy. No doubt there are cages one could configure and buy, but that's the point of Canon's Cx00 series: they've built a body that's ready to be a cinema camera.

Over at the GH Camera forum on DVXuser (http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/forumdisplay.php?175-Panasonic-GH-Cameras) there are a number of threads expressing disappointment about the GH4's V-Log L implementation for internal (8-bit 4:2:0) recording. I wouldn't get excited about using it without a 10-bit external recorder. Again, great if you can lock it off and leave it alone, but a pain if you have to follow actors around a set.

You mention day exteriors, which means you are absolutely going to need ND filters. The C100 has them built-in. For the GH4, you need a set for every lens you plan to use.

The GH4 is a wonderful personal camera. But for a production, where time is the most valuable asset, I would pick the C100 as the best choice for getting the most done with the least amount of hassle. Shooting in 4K isn't going to make or break the film, but if you run out of useable takes because you ran out of time, *that* could break the film. When you and your equipment are clearly able to run faster than any other part of the production, then add complexity. But never be the one who has to say "can we all take five, I need to change a filter, I think."

October 5, 2015 at 7:20AM

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Thanks for the elaborate response! The built in ND's is definitely a plus, something did not consider. I might just bring the gh4 anyway to get some extra coverage if I need to, but use the c100 as my main cam.

Kristaps

October 6, 2015 at 11:05PM

I agree with Michael that the Canon C100 is easier to use. You can just turn it on and start shooting, where a GH4 requires a little more care to get good results from it. The Canon C100 also has built-in XLR audio inputs, where the GH4 requires an adapter or you have to shoot dual-system sound.

Both cameras will require support if you want to shoot with a shoulder mount, but the GH4 can be mounted on a small 3-axis pistol-grip gimbal like the new Nebula 4200 or the Pilot-Fly H1 gimbals.

Nebula 4200 Compact 3-axis Gimbal Demo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ThYsssqYLlk

Dave Dugdale Reviews the Pilotfly H1 Plus vs CameTV Single Pistol-Grip Gimbals
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C0pa1Zu6reM

October 5, 2015 at 3:09PM, Edited October 5, 3:14PM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
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Thanks for replying! Think I'll just use the gh4 for a couple of shots, just to get some extra coverage and mainly rely on the C100.

Kristaps

October 6, 2015 at 11:09PM

As the other 2 gentlemen stated, THe C100 is going to produce a better production look. We were thinking of getting 2 gh4s. We rented a GH4 for a week and played around with all the features. They are not the friendliest to switch back and fourth for settings.

When we saw the price of c100 dropped to $3000. We knew exactly what camera to get. We have not regretted that decision at all. We love them. THe quality and easy of use is amazing.

October 9, 2015 at 8:42AM

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Carl Busch
Film Maker
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