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Old Jan 29, 2007, 9:48 PM   #1
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Are there any dslr cameras that have a true movie mode?

I understand the transfer rate limitations of the memory... those can be overcome with hardware mpeg4 encoding, or an external high speed storage device such as a portable hard drive...

correct me if i'm wrong, but the shutters speed shouldn't be a limitation because it can be done more or less in software, it doesn't necessarily ADD to the photo taking process... I would still be able to view what the camera is seeing on the lcd as it videos...

so what is keeping movie taking features from showing up in dslr cameras?
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Old Jan 30, 2007, 3:17 AM   #2
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no there are none right now. The mirror is one obstacle to providing a movie mode. The heat is another (although I'm not technically advanced enough to give specifics - hopefully someone else can chime in). Third, a DSLR is meant to be a high quality piece of photographic equipment. R&D money has to be spent wisely. It's only in the last year or two that there has been a massive influx of digicam users into the DSLR world. So you're just starting to see a swing towards technology that is important to THAT demographic (like anti-shake in body and mega zoom 18-300 type lenses) and away from technology for the semi-pro and pro demographic.

IMO, necessity is the mother of invention - if DSLR companies perceive a movie mode will provide competitive advantage (and that's tough because rememember the demographic interested is the entry level purchaser and thus costs must be kept low) they will do so. Just from following several forums I don't get the sense this is a pressing requirement for a lot of would-be camera buyers. Right now the entry level demographic seems to be hung up on megapixels (sigh), anti shake and anti-dust.
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Old Jan 31, 2007, 9:13 PM   #3
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Why is the mirror an obstacle on a digital camera without a traditional viewfinder?

What is the purpose of a mirror in a dslr camera?
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Old Jan 31, 2007, 9:33 PM   #4
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The mirror and/or prism directs the light from the lens to the optical viewfinder, so you can see what the sensor will see.

When the shutter button is pressed the mirror "flips" out of the way so the light hits the sensor, so for a brief moment the viewfinder goes dark till the exposure is concluded.

If you wanted to take a movie then the mirror would be out of position till the movie was completed, the optical viewfinder would therefor be dark , you would be shooting blind.

A couple of dslrs have used a live view system, where I think a secondary sensor feeds the lcd.

The result is afaik, generally either a dim viewfinder or limitations in autofocus/metering and a delay in shutter response.

Not many people rushed to buy these cameras...

Do a search forthe Olympus E330Evolt and read the conclusions.



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Old Feb 1, 2007, 5:39 PM   #5
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I understand what you're saying, but I think you missed the root of my question....
maybe i'm missing the point....

what about a dslr without a traditional viewfinder... i don't see any limitations preventing a dslr camera to get rid of the viewfinder for an lcd screen that is always active...

eliminate the mirror entirely, keep your aperture control, manual focus, use all your lenses, and get an accurate representation of what exactly you will be taking a photograph of live on the lcd.

I'm sure the idea of a dslr without a regular viewfinder might be the dealbreaker here, but if you can consider that possibility,

what is the limitation preventing a dslr camera with no viewfinder from having all the features and trappings of any other professional camera, but with a truly representative preview of the final result and a high quality movie mode?


You could have an entry level hd video camera with full lens support (i'm a total layman, i wonder if thats obvious) for a relatively reasonable price?
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Old Feb 1, 2007, 5:52 PM   #6
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Well 2 reasons come to mind why NOT to go with LCD and no view finder:

1. It's 1000% less stable to shoot that way - imagine holding a camera with a 4 pound lens at arm's length and trying to pan to follow an object. Wouldn't work.

2. LCDs aren't nearly as precise as optics - a viewfinder represents reality much better than an lcd could - plus the rendering speed. Again, think of the tracking example - track a subject and watch your LCD try to keep up and keep a focus point on it. With a video camera, you don't care as much about focus when you use the lcd you simply want to make sure the subject is in the frame - if it's out of focus for a split second no matter. But when taking a photo you don't want to waste that shot.

And again, you've ignored my point regarding market. There aren't enough people who WANT the feature for the manufacturers to pay attention to the request.
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Old Feb 1, 2007, 5:59 PM   #7
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Most serious pros and even semi-pros would never give up their view finder just so they would have a movie mode that they would probably never use. It's pretty much like anything else, if you want really good movies, buy a good movie camera, if you want really good photographs buy a really good still camera. The movies you get from most digicams leaves much to be desired and I doubt movies from a dslr would improve much, and the same goes for the still images you get from movie cameras. It is very difficult to get the best of both worlds out of a single camera at least at a reasonable price.
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Old Feb 1, 2007, 6:03 PM   #8
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... an hd camera capable of also taking great still shots...

maybe thats a market they don't want to infringe upon...

so correct me if i'm wrong here...

if you eliminate the viewfinder from a dslr camera, couldn't you eliminate the mirror and provide all the other dslr features, but with a true live preview and the ability to capture a full 30 fps?

Is there any camera out there, perhaps its not going to be a true dslr camera, but that has all the features of a dslr, exposure, aperture, interchangable lenses... everything but the viewfinder, but it does have a truly representative lcd, showing the end result with exposure, aperture, and lenses all shown accurately as a preview, AND have movie mode...


my reason?

I like to take 5 second videos instead of snapshots... and I want to do so with a high quality camera. I want to be able to do so in low light conditions and to be able to manually control the focus... i just like the control....

I'm sure what i'm looking for is overkill, but my current point and shoot digital camera only goes upto iso400 which is useless in a bar, and i got the idea that a dslr camera is what i'd need to do what i want, and do it right.
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Old Feb 1, 2007, 6:52 PM   #9
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buy a video camera. not a still camera.
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