Larry Thorpe is a Canon Engineer who presented the Canon C300 to a group of videographers earlier this month at Rule Boston Camera, a large video rental company.
Rule Camera is one of the largest video equipment rental companies in Boston and frequently hosts presentations on best practices and new equipment featuring excellent speakers who are experts or professionals in their field. Earlier this month I attended a presentation by Larry Thorpe, a Canon engineer and project leader on the C300, which is a remarkable new camera that was designed in direct response to the excitement generated by Canon’s introduction of HD video in their DSLRs, particularly the Canon 5D Mark II, the 7D and 60D.
This show, with the exception of a brief introduction is 30 minutes of Larry speaking about the history of the development of this project, considerations made regarding which features to include and the technology developed to create what appears to be a stand out, corner turning camera.
There are no slides to go with this talk but I don’t think it requires any visuals. Rule recorded the presentation and the video is available online, but I thought you’d appreciate being able to just listen to it.
I was impressed by his straightforward presentation, amazing knowledge of the technology and yet equally impressive ability to present these dense concepts to non-engineers in simple, clear language. All the same, it’s geek level information and while I don’t apologize, I realize it’s not for everyone’s ears. So if you don’t care to listen, I’ll give you a brief takeaway.
As Larry points out, Canon has come into the professional/prosumer market late in the game but with a solid commitment to becoming the leader. That alone is good news. It assures the continued development of the HD video DSLRs and the synchronicity between DSLRS and dedicated video cameras. His description of Canon’s business plan for this market is a very interesting insight into the future of HD digital video.
Most importantly, this range of cameras, which are relatively inexpensive compared to existing professional cameras with comparable features, is still more money than the average prosumer will be willing to pay. However, if you’re a small organization with serious video/filmmaking goals you’ll find this an exceptional choice for achieving greater quality.
I admit to getting lost when he describes how the 4k camera sensor captures data that renders superior HD footage, but it’s exciting to see how they’re developing new techniques with existing technology in order to move the industry forward while speeding up the development cycle. What this means for the lower budget video producer is that many of these changes will be trickling down to the $4,000 to $8,000 range cameras much sooner rather than later.
Of course the most apparent feature is the form factor. It’s funny looking compared to both current video cameras and DSLRs, but it is great to hold. It’s light, small, all the buttons are easy to reach and everything you need, in a video camera; XLR audio jacks, removable lens, focusing aids, . . . . .
For the sake of brevity this episode contains just the presentation Larry gave. There was a followup Q&A which I will post in a couple days.
I would like to thank Rule Camera for the opportunity to hear Larry speak and see and handle this camera. If you do any shooting at all and need a flexible tool I would encourage you to visit Rule, or your local Camera Rental company and if they have one of these available, consider giving it spin.
I’m not advising this as a buy though, I haven’t used it myself, except in the showroom. New cameras are always full of surprises and you don’t want to solve problems while you’re on a shoot. I’ll keep an eye out on news of the camera and put out an update sometime in the future.