Head to Head: Mirrorless or DSLR?
Maarten | On 18, Oct 2016
Dear Diary: Paul Marshman (The Travelling Boomer) and I were chatting over coffee about some recent camera reviews, and we both made the same observation. Although it seems counter-intuitive, DSLRs (and by that we mean digital cameras with mirrors) tend to be more responsive, with less shutter lag than their mirrorless competitors.
With that thought in mind, we started listing some of the comparison points that seemed relevant to us, and came up with a script for the following video.
Behind the scenes
Because the script contained mostly talking heads, we planned to spend a day in the Niagara region to shoot with a variety of backgrounds. By planning the shoot in early October, we were hoping that the fall colours could be part of the scenery – but the warm and lingering summer conspired against us.
We shot in the town of Niagara on the Lake, at Balzacs, at Fort George, around the Brock monument at Queenston Heights and at the Niagara Botanical Gardens. It’s a lovely touristy place to visit, (Paul’s take on Niagara) both close to and far from the slightly tacky commercialism of the town of Niagara Falls.
We were unhappy with one scene, so re-shot the opening scenes in High Park in Toronto. The camera store scene was shot at my local, The DV Shop – a friendly, helpful and competitive local retailer. Terry and Sean were very accommodating to a slightly disruptive video shoot. I can only wish you have a shop like this close to you.
Calla was behind the camera for the scenes in Niagara, Thom for the scenes in Toronto.
The video was shot entirely on the Fuji X-T2 with the XF 16-55 lens, the VPB-XT2 grip and a B+W 0.9 ND (for exteriors). I trust that you’ll be as impressed with the quality of the images as I am. It’s an excellent example of why mirrorless cameras are better for video.
The scenes are shot in 4K 24p, and many are recomposed for output to HD. Shutter at 1/60, aperture 2.8-4, exposure adjusted with ISO. Custom white balance. I recorded internally, so not in FLog (as we wanted to travel light and didn’t want to lug the Shogun around). I did set colour -2 and sharpness -2. I did (using FCPX’s native color board) make some minor grading adjustments in post – just to set our facial tones at 70%, reduce the whites from 100% to 90% and to slightly reduce saturation for scenes that were still a little over-saturated. Very happy with the final results.
As required, we used an Aputure Amaran AL-H160 on camera LED.
We used the Manfrotto 546/504 tripod/head and the smaller 190/701 (no longer available) depending on circumstances.
Edited in Final Cut 10.2.3 on a 5K iMac.
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The products reviewed are on loan, and returned after the review unless otherwise mentioned.
I am not sponsored or compensated by any manufacturer, I have not accepted payment to review any product.
My relationship with Fuji: Fuji asked for my assistance with video production, I am helping them shoot and edit videos for the Fujiguys Canada channel. In exchange, they have provided an extended loan of a Fuji X-T2 camera, grip and two XF lenses. No money has changed hands, they have no editorial influence on maartech videos for Fuji or other products.
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