By site editor Dan Chung:
Large sensor camcorders like the Canon C300, Canon C100 and Sony FS700 have become very popular amongst documentary filmmakers in recent months, but DSLR still remains the number one choice of many. Some shooters continue to use DSLR simply because they feel it makes financial sense – their cameras were paid off and the clients they work for aren’t demanding a better image quality at this point in time, so why change? I know several shooters who continue to use their trusty 5Ds in preference to the newer offerings because they prefer the look of the images and the size and weight of the camera. One of those is Newsshooter contributor Duy Linh Tu of Columbia J-school. He’s the first to admit that DSLRs aren’t designed to be run-and-gun cameras but has overcome many of issues with a fairly simple setup. He’s put together the excellent video below detailing his documentary setup with the 5D mkIII.
Below is the list of the gear Duy used in the video:
Canon EOS 5D mkIII Digital Camera Kit with Canon 24-105mm f/4L IS USM AF Lens
Sound Devices MixPre-D Compact Field Mixer
Sound Devices XL-CAM Camera Mount Bracket for MixPre-D
Sound Devices XL3 Mini Male to TA3-F Connector Cable is a 12″ Link from a Sound Devices MixPre/MP-2 Tape Output to a 442/302 Series Mix Input
Hosa Technology Stereo Mini Angled Male to Stereo Angled Mini Male Cable – 8
Redrock Micro DSLR Baseplate
Redrock Micro DSLR Mini Tripod Platform
Redrock Micro microMount 3-Pack (w/out Spuds)
Redrock Micro microSpud (3x)
Redrock Micro 8-011-0004 15mm Carbon Fiber Rod (9″, Pair)
Redrock Micro 8-011-0006 15mm Carbon Fiber Rod (4″, Pair)
Zacuto EVF Pro (3.2″)
Zacuto Z-ZCM Zicro Mini
Rode NTG-3 Precision RF-Biased Shotgun Microphone
Pearstone DUSM-1 Universal Shock Mount for Camera Shoes and Boompoles
Like Duy I have large sensor cameras at my disposal. I can choose to shoot Canon C300 or Sony F3 for any assignment I want, but even so I recently purchased a Canon 1D C for documentary work. For me there is still an allure to shooting DSLR video, it is somehow more intimate when shooting with a DSLR. While other cameras are technically better I feel that most of the time the image recorded on the 1 DC is somehow closer to the one I wanted when I shot it. I still love the C300 and its the best all round camera for my daily work, but I find myself reaching for my DSLR more and more.
If you want to know more about Duy and his work you can follow his tumblr here.