Canon C100: Likes & Dislikes

Canon C100: Likes & Dislikes

My 30 days of shooting with the C100 are officially over. I really put this camera through its paces in almost any situation you can think of. My perspective is to judge this camera for what it is intended; as a viable replacement/upgrade from a DSLR. Overall, I think it’s an excellent option for anyone looking for this kind of solution. It does a pretty good job of blending the look and creative style of a DSLR with the practical functionality of a traditional video camera.

So, rather than blabbing on and on, I thought I would just get to the point and briefly describe what I liked, what was slightly annoying, and what I didn’t like.

Eyecup 2

 

CANON C100 LIKES:

1. LOW LIGHT PERFORMANCE

The low light performance of this camera is quite remarkable. I actually found myself staring at the picture in disbelief after comparing it to what I was seeing with my naked eye. I never felt comfortable pushing my 5D MKII much past 800 ISO. With the C100 I was up around 10,000 on a couple of occasions and still had good results. For the type of work I do, this in itself made me feel good about my decision to buy one.

2. PEAKING

Having this traditional video feature in this type of camera was a god send. Focusing was a breeze, even when viewing the LCD screen from a slight distance in bright light. The focus point really cracks back-and-forth nicely. When I pulled out my old MKII with a Zacuto Z-Finder for comparison it was like looking at the image through a Pro Mist filter or something. How the heck did I manage without peaking? I can’t go back. Yes, you can add an external EVF that includes a peaking feature but that’s another thing to mount on the camera and I always found that awkward and somewhat unwieldy.

3. ACCESS TO CONTROLS

After a few days of shooting I found all the controls were pretty much exactly where I wanted them to be and everything became second nature. I could start/stop record, adjust f-stop, ISO, white balance and the ND filter without removing my hands from the operating position. You can assign almost any function to any button, but I found the factory settings to be just fine and didn’t mess with them at all. Plus the buttons are labeled with their default function so why cause confusion.

The small thumb-operated joystick on the handgrip was extremely useful. With one click you can activate it and easily jump around to several functions such as ISO in the viewfinder display. Loved this thing!

4. BATTERY LIFE

The battery life was crazy good. The small battery that comes with the camera would almost last me all day. Before I set out on this trip, I bought two of the larger, high capacity batteries and I barely used them. I would typically shoot for about 6 or 7 hours and I think I only drained the stock battery once. I would recommend buying just one additional battery for average use. See how it goes and only buy more if you find you need them.

5. RECORD TIME

The down side of the AVCHD codec is 4:2:0. The good side is awesome recording time. 2.5 hours on one 32GB SD card. That’s outstanding. I could put two 32GB cards in the thing and shoot all day without worry about it again. For traveling, it also means I can bring enough SD cards (which are relatively cheap) with me and not have to dump anything to a hard drive. You can also set the second SD card slot to dual record so it will create a backup copy simultaneously. Great feature.

6. HAND GRIP

I’m a big fan of the side handgrip. I find it extremely comfortable – even over a long period of time. I can remember some other video camera handgrips that left my hand as numb as a canned ham after just a few hours. This one just makes sense. It felt right from the moment I picked it up. You can rotate the grip but it does take a couple of minutes as you have to unthread it, rotate it where you want it, then rethread it. It’s more of a “set and forget” kind of thing than something you adjust several times during the day. I found the straight-up center position quite well balanced.

Love the hand grip.

Love the hand grip.

 

7. CARRYING HANDLE

Such a simple thing but did I ever put it to good use. It kind of reminded me of using my EX1 when I needed to get low angle shots of feet walking along a path or hang the camera out a car window etc. One one occasion, I found myself laying out of the back of a van while filming an Olympic triathlete running and cycling down a twisting canyon road. I held onto the handle and let the camera just barely skim above the road surface while eyeballing the shot on the LCD screen.  Try that with a DSLR. I know it’s possible if you have one all rigged up, but for me, I don’t really do that with my cameras. I prefer them clean and compact without all the extra bits and pieces attached everywhere.

The handle also made it possible to comfortably carry the camera while I was walking around. This is no small deal. It’s the little things that really add up to make your day easier.

 

 

The top handle was great for walking shots behind and beside kids.

The top handle was great for walking shots behind and beside kids.

More low-angle shots in the garbage dump.

More low-angle shots in the garbage dump.

Hanging out the back of a van. The handle was perfect for getting the camera to skim just above the road surface.

Hanging out the back of a van. The handle was perfect for getting the camera to skim just above the road surface.

 

8. USE OF EF-S LENSES

I had a few EF-S lenses from my old 7D that I couldn’t part with including a 10-22mm and a f-2.8 17-55mm. Because the C100 excepts EF-S lenses I decided to bring them along and see how they performed. I ended up using them a lot. Because of the C100’s crop factor I found my EF-L 24-105mm just wasn’t wide enough for up close documentary work. It had the reach, but I just felt boxed in. The 17-55mm worked great. It has IS, it’s fast enough at f.2.8, and it’s considerably lighter than an L series lens. I couldn’t see any real difference in the image quality, so for future road trips, this lens is coming with me. The 10-22mm was more like a 16-35mm with the crop factor so it was really handy for the occasional ultra-wide shot.

Now the C100 does have a menu option for what it calls EF-S Lens Correction. When activated, it enlarges the image by approximately 1.04% to crop “peripheral illumination fall-off”. To be honest, I couldn’t see any advantage to turning this on. And because I was swapping EF-S and EF-L lenses all the time, I didn’t want to be bothered, and more likely forgetting, to turn it on and off. From just my naked eye, all the EF-S footage looks just fine. If there was any fall-off on the edges, I couldn’t see it. Maybe I’ll regret it later when I’m editing all the footage and see it on a big screen. I’ll keep you posted on that.

I used a mix of EF-L and EF-S lenses.

I used a mix of EF-L and EF-S lenses.

9. MAGNIFY WHILE RECORDING

Being able to magnify the image to double check focus while you’re recording was quite handy on a few occasions. On most of our interviews I was shooting with a very shallow depth of field, so it was nice to be able punch in to make sure my focus was still accurate as the subject moved around a bit. Just one thing to be aware of, resist the urge to re-frame the shot slightly when viewing the magnified image! It’s just such an instinctive habit that a couple of times I found myself doing it even though there are big letters in the screen display that say “MAGN”. Felt a little embarrassed inside my head.

No camera is perfect and the C100 is no exception.

No camera is perfect and the C100 is no exception.

CANON C100 ANNOYANCES:

1. ND FILTERS

If you want to maintain an f-2.8 to 5.6 aperture range in bright lighting conditions such as a sunny beach etc, the built-in ND filter wheel doesn’t quite cut it. I found that I needed to add an additional screw-on ND filter on more than a few occasions. I added a 4-stop ND, which was probably overkill, but it did the job.

The built in ND wheel works great and it’s well placed on the camera. But the three options are 2-stops, 4-stops and 6-stops. Unfortunately, that’s about 2-stops short. Given the choice, I would rather have 2-stops, 4-stops and 8-stops. It’s easier too add more ND than perhaps you ideally need and bring up the ISO to compensate – keeping a larger aperture and relatively shallow depth of field. There is no negative ISO so without additional ND filters you could find yourself shooting at f.11 or similar in bright conditions.

2. LOW VOLUME AUDIO OUTPUT

I haven’t really tested this with several types of headphones, but the volume of the audio output to the headphone jack was low – even with the volume control maxed out. Like-wise for the speaker on the body of the camera. If there’s any kind of background noise you won’t hear much from the speaker when you’re checking playback.

3. AUDIO METERS

Unlike the Sony XDCAM-EX cameras, the only way to view audio levels is via the small meters in the viewfinder/LCD. There is a “Status” menu function that brings up all kinds of detailed information options, but I was disappointed to see that expanded, more accurate audio meters wasn’t one of them.

And there are some things that just make you frustrated.

And there are some things that just make you frustrated.

CANON C100 DISLIKES:

1. EYEPIECE/VIEWFINDER

In my opinion, this is the C100’s one major flaw. The fact that it’s so small, has poor resolution, doesn’t tilt up, and doesn’t include any type of eyecup to block out light is just plain silly. Most people will probably ignore it completely and rely on the LCD screen. This does work in most situations but obviously not in all. In almost any photo or video of the C100 in action you can see all kinds of hand-made sunshades or hoods that are taped or clamped on in some fashion. It’s like Canon got us 90% there with this camera and then just left us to our own devises to figure this out.

That being said, I did find that my temporary workarounds described in my previous post worked reasonably well. And, as much as hate to say it, I did find that adapting the old Sony PD-170 eyecup made the eyepiece much more usable than I thought. It actually worked and got the job done. I’m not saying that’s it’s good – more that I just got used to it. I suppose I’ve used worse over the years. I’m going to refrain from looking through the eyepiece of the C300 because that will just make me angry again. What could have been!

 2. WATER/WEATHER RESISTANCE 

Once again I haven’t done extensive testing on this, but it appears water getting anywhere near this camera could be an issue. I was shooting handheld, following a swimmer walking into the ocean. My plan was to just go in about waist deep and let them swim away from camera. On our way into the surf, a small little wave kicked up a minor splash that hit the side of the camera. Nothing major, just a few drops here and there.

Well, I’m not exactly sure where the water entered the camera body or if was more about the battery compartment, but within a few seconds the entire picture flickered in an “oh-oh” kind of way and then went completely blue. Restarting the camera didn’t solve the problem. After going to my happy place for a few minutes, I just turned it off, left it in the sun for about 45 minutes and pretended nothing happened. Then I turned it back on and all was well. Hmmmmm?

This could have been a one-time, fluke kind of incident or it could be something to be truly concerned about. I don’t really want to splash some more water on it to find out. If anyone else has any experience with this I’d like to hear from you.

All in all, I think the C100 is a great choice for anyone wanted to evolve from DSLR  shooting. It packs quite a punch and the images will blow you away.

All in all, I think the C100 is a great choice for anyone wanted to evolve from DSLR shooting. It packs quite a punch and the images will blow you away.

 

 

 

 

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86 Comments

  1. March 5, 2013, 3:39 am   /  Reply

    Hi Scot,

    Interesting notes on the C100 – great to hear practical feedback from someone using it in the field. I’ve been shooting with it since January for corporate and some event work. Agree with all your pros and cons… for me the viewfinder is useless and using the LCD outdoors is a challenge. Would like to see some 3rd party solution soon.

    Would be interested in hearing your experience in editing…. have you used the C-Log profile at all? Any comments on where to expose on the waveform?

    • Scot McDonald
      March 5, 2013, 7:01 am   /  Reply

      Hi Glenn,
      I haven’t used C-Log yet as these first projects with the C100 have tight post budgets and I won’t have time to grade each shot. I have however been using the “Wide DR” profile and I’m quite happy with the look of it. You can get away with little or no grading and have a very nice look.

      As far as the waveform goes, I have to be honest, I didn’t really use it at all. After so many years of doing this (too many to mention!) I’m more of an eyeball guy. Once I’m familiar with how the viewfinder or screen represents actual exposure, I just rely on my visual judgement.

      Thanks for the comment and questions. Hope to hear from you again soon!
      Scot McDonald

      • March 5, 2013, 7:23 am   /  Reply

        Cheers Scot – keep up the good work with the blog!

  2. March 7, 2013, 8:01 pm   /  Reply

    I am very excited to be purchasing this camera soon. Wondering what kind of boom mic you used with c100? And how good was the onboard mic?

    • Scot McDonald
      March 8, 2013, 12:23 am   /  Reply

      Hi Jesse,
      Thanks for you comment and question. I use a Sennheiser ME64 short shotgun. It’s a great mic for the C100. You can read more details about that in an earlier reply in this post.

      I haven’t really assessed the quality of the builtin mic other than to say that it works and there is audio there. Like most of these types of mics, they’re ok in a pinch, but I would never rely on it for production sound. Also, there isn’t any wind protection to speak of, so outside it will be pretty much useless in any kind of breeze. So, if aliens landed in your backyard in the middle of the night and you just grabbed the camera in your pyjamas and ran out the door to get some shots before it flew away – that’s what the builtin mic is for.

      When you get your C100 let me know what your likes and dislikes are.

      Thanks again!
      Scot McDonald

      • March 8, 2013, 2:41 pm   /  Reply

        Thanks for the info! I will reach out again once I have had some time with the c100. Best!

  3. Sheldon
    March 8, 2013, 12:06 pm   /  Reply

    Wow. Sorry to hear about the water issue. I am about to purchase a c100 and I’ll be using it a lot along the coast, and on a sailing trip. I went to Costa Rica in 2008 for a month with two 40D’s and both crapped within a week from moisture infiltration. There was a lot of salt water spray, humidity and I photographed some surfers by wading in once and had the same little splash. Didn’t immediate effect the camera but many functions stopped working shortly after rendering it useless. I know use only weather sealed bodies, and if the C100 can’t take a little mist or light rain, that’s incredibly worrisome.

    • November 19, 2014, 2:27 am   /  Reply

      Made a film about a sailboat, with in a storm full bucket of water over the canon 5d mark ii… you could see the water in the lens. Two days later, after drying out, it worked again.

      now i have the c100. very happy with the camera in combination with atomos ninja for prores recordign and a good monitor!

  4. April 29, 2013, 11:28 pm   /  Reply

    5d mk3. Or. C100. .? Thank you

    • Scot McDonald
      April 30, 2013, 8:19 am   /  Reply

      Hi there Sweet molly,
      Well, all things considered, I would go for the C100. More money yes, but if you’re looking for a camera to shoot primarily video rather than a mix of photography and video, then the XLR audio inputs, built-in ND filters, form factor and general functionality of the C100 is well worth the extra investment. You do give up a full-frame sensor but you get the same low light performance and I’m more than happy with the image quality. Plus, with the C100 you can use less expensive Canon EF-S lenses such as the 17-55mm f/2.8 IS USM Zoom with great success.

      Hope this helps!

  5. May 3, 2013, 11:41 am   /  Reply

    Hi Scott, i’ve been looking at either the C100 or XF300 to match with my T2i with Magic Lantern and 5DM3. I was wondering if you’ve used the XF300 and if so how does this camera compare when it comes to IQ and run&gun? I know I’ll loose DOF on the XF300.

    Thanks

    David A

    • Scot McDonald
      May 3, 2013, 1:36 pm   /  Reply

      Hi David,
      I haven’t actually shot with the XF300 but I’m familiar with it. This is an interesting choice; XF300 or C100? The C100 has definitely bridged the gap between DSLR and traditional video camera shooting. You get the look and low-light performance but with much better functionality. The XF300 gives you an excellent “run-and-gun” camera with 50Mbps 4:2:2 recording – that’s a big plus of you’re doing work for broadcast. The C100 outputs 50Mbps 4:2:2 through HDMI but you’ll need an external recorder. Price wise they’re almost identical, although Canon just announced a rebate for the C100 which makes it slightly cheaper now. However, add in an external recorder such as the Ninja-2 and you’re right back to the same price point. So, no clear-cut winner regarding price.

      In my opinion, if you’re goal is to shoot with more of a creative, story telling, cine style – then I would go with the C100. If you’ll be doing more live events, real-time stuff or reality TV etc and you need to react quickly and get it right with minimal futzing around – then I would go with the XF300.

      In the end though, I think this comes down to the camera you feel more comfortable with. The best camera is the one you’ll actually use and make money with!

      Good luck. Let me know what you choose and how it works out.

      Cheers!
      Scot McDonald

  6. May 3, 2013, 1:55 pm   /  Reply

    C100 or XF100 or XF300? Tough choices!
    I put in an order for the C100 a few days ago, this was a great review and as most of my work is solo-documentary or industrial shooting, this camera seems to be the best buy now. I have been using a 7D &60D since moving away from 1/3″ chip cameras. Though I am very disappointed that Canon could not justify a slightly better internal codec, at least they made it possible to use an external recorder, through HDMI…when did that become a professional jack? Still, as the “competition” is the FS100 from Sony, or the AF100 from Panasonic, I decided to stay with the EF mount as I have a considerable investment in EF glass. The sensor technology is interesting, same sensor as the 300&500, but crippled (lower cost) internal processing? Well isn’t’ that what external recorders are for? Why process anything and put out 4k as well? Hard to sell a $26K camera if the $5.5K camera could output 4k raw as well. I am looking forward to using the camera soon, as I have been using the DSLR’s with a large battery grip, the form factor should be similar.
    I did a shoot with a full rig and follow focus with the 60d, what a pain! I am expecting to be able to do more hand held work with this camera from all the reports I have read hand holding without a rig is possible, I just hope I get good results as well.

    M

  7. May 12, 2013, 11:26 pm   /  Reply

    Very informative post on the C100. You’ve answered my questions about ef-s lenses. I have a Tamron 17-55mm F2.8 VC II lens that I want to hold in to due to the crop factor on the c100. I’m assuming its similar spec to the canon 17-55 efs lens you mention so vignetting shouldn’t be an issue. I am worried that the 24-105 F4 would not be wide enough for what I need and was leaning towards the 17-40 F4. I’d love to hear your opinion. My main use is corporate promotional videos and run and gun style.

    Thanks again.

    • Scot McDonald
      May 13, 2013, 10:45 am   /  Reply

      Hi Drew,
      That exactly what I found with the 24-105 f/4 – it was my “go-to” lens with the 5D but wasn’t quite wide enough when using it on the C100. Much of my work is hand-held and up close, so even though I was giving up some reach, the 17-55 f/2.8 worked much better for me.

      The 17-40 f/4 L is an excellent lens, but I would probably choose the 17-55 f/2.8, even though it’s an EF-S lens. It’s faster, has Image Stabilization (which the 17-40 doesn’t) and for situations like interviews, its just long enough to get in tight. I think you’ll find the 17-40 a little frustrating in that regard – always just not quite long enough!

      Hope this helps.

      Cheer!
      Scot McDonald

      • Drew
        May 14, 2013, 5:04 am   /  Reply

        Thanks Scott,
        That’s was my worry with the 17-40. I think I’ll stick with the 17-55 and my 70-200 F4 L lens for now. The 17-55 has been my main lens for 3 years.
        Enjoying your blog btw. Very informative.
        Drew

  8. Jonathan
    August 22, 2013, 11:56 am   /  Reply

    This is to say thank you for your post. I’ve been reading this article once every month until I save enough money to buy this camera. I just ordered mine and very much excited about this new camera. Thank you again for your review and I’m sure I will love this new camera.

  9. September 22, 2013, 1:48 am   /  Reply

    Scott,
    Thanks for your ‘working’ review. I too am planning getting a C100. Would love to know how you took precautions from dust getting onto the sensor while changing lenses.
    Thanks–Ajit

    • Scot McDonald
      October 7, 2013, 7:03 am   /  Reply

      Hi Ajit,
      Well, working in the conditions we do, I just have to work fast and minimize the time the sensor is exposed to the elements. I usually have someone help me out so I can hand them the lens I’m removing while they pass me the new one. It’s always a good idea to make sure the sensor is shielded from the wind or blowing dust as much as possible. Using your hand to cover it during the transition and keeping your body close to the camera helps considerably. So far so good for me!

  10. Peter
    October 6, 2013, 3:01 pm   /  Reply

    Scot, thanks for the excellent review.
    Not that I would use it too much but does the Canon 17-55 EF-S work in auto focus mode on the C100? It does come in handy on occasion.
    Many thanks again.

    • Scot McDonald
      October 7, 2013, 7:06 am   /  Reply

      Hi Peter,
      Yes, the 17-55 EF-S works with the auto focus function. As you said, I hardly ever use it (I actually always seem to forget it’s there) but it can come in handy in certain situations.

  11. October 10, 2013, 10:02 am   /  Reply

    Hi Scot,
    Noticed that you were using the Hoodman magnifier on the C100, but you were not very taken in by the Zucato. Did the Hoodman work better for you? Have you tried using a EVF like the Small HD?
    As usual, would appreciate your insight.
    Thanks–Ajit

    • Scot McDonald
      October 27, 2013, 9:07 am   /  Reply

      Hi Ajit,
      So much of my shooting is done hand-held and on the fly, so keeping things simple and compact is really important for me. There’s no doubt that the Zacuto Z-Finder for the C100 is a great product as well as their EVF (I have both) – I definitely use them when I’ve got my cameras rigged-up for more of a controlled, film style shoot. I just found the Z-Finder a bit awkward and uncomfortable from a form-factor perspective when I’m “running and gunning”. The Hoodman works in a pinch but attaching it to the LCD screen is a bit of a workaround and it isn’t perfect. What I’ve found is that I keep trying to make these types of products work and have the best of intentions of using them – then after the first day of a shoot I take everything off and get back to basics. But this is just me and my personal way of doing things. The best solutions for camera accessories (or lack thereof) is going with what makes you feel the most comfortable – so you can focus on the creative process and not be thinking about, adjusting and tweaking your gear all day. You might find the Z-Finder works perfect for you. The best thing I can suggest is to go to your local camera shop and try a few things out. Some products just feel right as soon as you pick them up. Others may seem like they’re exactly what you’ve been looking for but end up back in their box in your closet… hardly used. I know, you should see my equipment storage room – a classic graveyard of stuff I absolutely had to have!

  12. November 4, 2013, 9:42 am   /  Reply

    Hi Scot,
    Excellent review of the C100. I have to say I am still on the fence with purchasing this camera. I have been working with a modified 7D for a couple years now and have been very satisfied with the results (despite all the DSLR shortcomings) . Here is a short demo of my rig http://fieldnotes.com/jkf_filmtech1.html. I use a Beachtek mixer for audio and things sound pretty darn good. The C100 would improve this greatly but one of my biggest challenges is having a viewfinder that allows me to shoot from very low angles. It seem this again is a weakness on the C100. I have also had good luck with log & transfer of 7D footage where as there seems to be some issues with the C100 codec in FCP7. The C300 would be the ticket but I cannot justify the 2x expense. Now you mentioned possible problems in wet environments. I was wondering about this because of the cooling vent on the side of the camera. Very exposed! This is a tough pro & con choice for me. I guess what it comes down to is, does image quality and professional camera features justify another $6k expense.

    Do you see this moisture problem as being significant in harsh environments?

    Thanks.
    Jim

    • Scot McDonald
      November 12, 2013, 9:09 am   /  Reply

      Hi Jim,
      Choosing a camera that meets all your needs is pretty frustrating isn’t it? No matter which camera solution you look at there’s always something missing. I guess there’s never going to be the “perfect” camera – just the one the seems to be the best compromise.

      It appears you’ve got your 7D setup quite well. I would think your current work looks and sounds pretty good.

      I think this is the one of the biggest challenges us independent videographers face. We can go out and invest a significant amount of money in new cameras that leverage us up the food chain from DSLR shooting but as far as our clients are concerned, the end product looks pretty much the same. It’s not like we can suddenly raise our rates because we’re now shooting with a Canon C300. Thats the situation DSLR’s have put us in. The pictures look amazingly good. What the pictures don’t show however, is how much of a workaround DSLR shooting is and how frustrating it can be. You’re probably like me and just got used to it as being “normal”.

      In my opinion, upgrading to a new camera is more about looking for a solution that’s just going to make you’re life easier. A camera that minimizes the amount of clunky add-ons and extra bits to fiddle with and really lets you focus on the craft and being a better creative story teller. That’s where you can make more money!

      With that in mind, if you’re really comfortable with the 7D and you’ve gotten to a place where you don’t have to think about it too much, then maybe you should just stick with it.

      For me, the C100 offered a few key things that I felt were worth the investment.

      Low light performance.
      Built-in audio connections and pro-quality audio recording quality.
      Headset monitoring.
      Built-in ND filters.
      Better form-factor and comfort.
      More control over Picture Profile settings.
      No 8-10 minute limit to clip recording length.
      Up to 5-hours recording time on two SD cards.
      The ability to dual record to create instant back-up.

      There’s probably a few more little things but these were the key features that I found made it worth the purchase. I just like the fact that everything is integrated and built in – nothing is hanging off or awkwardly connected. It just works and I don’t have to think about it too much.

      Regarding AVCHD, while the actual picture quality is just fine, editing with it is not ideal. It will import and work, but if you’re doing much more than just chopping a few pieces together for quick output, it would avoid editing it natively. I use FCP X now and during import I check the “Optimize Media” option which essentially converts it to ProRes 4:2:2. It takes some time, but I used to convert all my DSLR footage to ProRes anyway so that’s pretty much a wash.

      I’ve found that I’ve become more comfortable shooting with the LCD screen. I never used to be that way, I always preferred to have my eye snug in a viewfinder’s eyecup. Even on bright days the LCD is pretty good and because it flips up, low angle shooting is a breeze. Unfortunately, it doesn’t flip down – so if you’re really high on sticks for example, you’re going to need a stool or something!

      As far as the water/moisture problem with the side vents are concerned, I think my initial mishap was a weird one-off event. So far, I haven’t had any other issues. I haven’t necessarily shot in the water, but I’ve been in many extremely hot and humid countries and haven’t had any problems at all.

      So, I hope this helps somewhat Jim. Or maybe it just adds more fuel to your dilemma!

      Cheers!
      Scot

      • Jim
        November 12, 2013, 9:35 am   /  Reply

        Thanks for the reply, Scot. I agree 100% with you comments and have already placed and order using Canon’s 24 month 0% interest lease option. I look forward to working on a REAL video camera again. I also went for the Zacuto viewfinder. Since I mainly shoot from sticks the extension should not be an issue and I like the ability to do critical focus from the LCD. I will keep you posted.
        Thanks for a great blog.
        Jim

        • Scot McDonald
          November 13, 2013, 8:58 am   /  Reply

          That’s great Jim. Yes, definitely keep me posted. I would like to hear your about your experiences and impressions with your C100. Have fun with it!
          Scot

  13. November 5, 2013, 7:28 am   /  Reply

    Scott,

    Can you tell me what editing software you use when you go to post? I use Final Cut. Do the video files coming from the C100 play nice with FCP?

    • Scot McDonald
      November 12, 2013, 9:15 am   /  Reply

      Hi Michael,
      I just answered a similar question from Jim, so if you don’t mind I’ll reply with some of the same comments I offered to him.

      Regarding AVCHD, while the actual picture quality is just fine, editing with it is not ideal. It will import and work, but if you’re doing much more than just chopping a few pieces together for quick output, it would avoid editing it natively. I use FCP X now and during import I check the “Optimize Media” option which essentially converts it to ProRes 4:2:2. It takes some time, but I used to convert all my DSLR footage to ProRes anyway so that’s pretty much a wash.

      I’ve also imported AVCHD into FCP 7 using Log and Transfer and that worked just fine (I believe you need to download the Canon AVCHD FCP plugin if you don’t have it). For some reason FCP 7 seems to be less clunky editing it natively. As long as you’re not doing much picture grading or effects, you might have pretty good results.

      Thanks!
      Scot

  14. November 5, 2013, 10:22 pm   /  Reply

    Hi Scot,
    A small observation on the Canon C100.
    I have my C100 for a month now and having put a rubber eye cup to the viewfinder, I find that the viewfinder is VERY usable indeed. So much so, that I use the LCD screen once in a while and only when I need to see the WFM. I have tweaked the contrast and sharpness settings for the VF to a point that what I see through the VF is pretty much what I see normally.
    Also I really cant see any difference in the DR of the footage shot at a lower ISO than the suggested 850. The lower ISO also helps in cutting down further on the f-stops when using the ND filters.
    Thanks ,
    Ajit

    • Scot McDonald
      November 12, 2013, 9:22 am   /  Reply

      Hi Ajit,
      Yes, I’m with you there. I’ve often lowered the ISO from it’s native 850 to reduce light sensitivity. I never really thought that would have any kind of negative impact on my image but apparently it does in the DR (this according to some highly respected DP’s). However, sometimes I just have to make that choice on the fly to maintain the aperture I want. Like you, I don’t see a dramatic enough difference to make me avoid doing this. I suppose if I was shooting a short film where I knew I was going to be doing heavy grading and trying to maintain a very specific look, I would preserve as much DR as possible. But in run-and-gun doc shooting – you do what you have to do.

      Cheers!
      Scot

  15. John
    November 24, 2013, 11:57 am   /  Reply

    Reading your blog was a big reason I decided to go with the C-100 back in June and so far I’m loving it. Thanks for sharing your valuable insights and experiences. Do you have any opinions on the Sigma 18-35 f1.8? This lens seems to have gained popularity with C-100 shooters and getting rave reviews.

    • Scot McDonald
      December 17, 2013, 6:55 am   /  Reply

      Hi John,
      Sorry for the very late reply to your question. I’ve been bogged down in production deadlines the past month or so. Yes, the Sigma is getting a lot of attention. I haven’t had a chance to get my hands on one yet but I’ve heard very good things about it. The build quality is excellent. But obviously the big deal is f1.8 on a wide angle lens. That could prove to be very handy. From a video perspective it does lack IS but that isn’t necessarily a deal breaker. I guess the question I’ll need to ask myself is this 18-35 f1.8 going to provide a significant advantage over my Canon 17-55 f.28 with IS. Hmmmm… f1.8 does sound pretty good doesn’t it.

      • John
        December 17, 2013, 1:17 pm   /  Reply

        Thanks for the reply Scot. I agree with both you and Peter. I decided to go with the 17-55 and have had it for a few weeks. The extra reach and IS definitely makes a huge difference. Exactly what I need for running and gunning which I do most of the time. I’m trying to avoid having to carry a lot of different lenses so this hits the sweet spot in combination with my Tokina 11-16 & Canon 24-105. Wish I could afford the Canon 70-200 2.8 but might get the f4.0 version.

  16. Peter
    December 17, 2013, 7:44 am   /  Reply

    I have had my C100 for a couple of months and have been shooting primarily with the Canon 17-55 f2.8. Just wanted to add that for hand holding the IS is invaluable. Also having a bit more reach at the long end (55 vs 35) I think makes it a more versatile choice over the Sigma. The build quality of the Canon 17-55 leaves a bit to be desired but I have been quite surprised by how sharp it is., A good match with the C100 in my opinion.

    • Scot McDonald
      December 17, 2013, 8:03 am   /  Reply

      Hi Peter,
      I think I’m with you on this one. The 17-55 f2.8 is the better choice for a reasonably wide, reasonably fast, constant aperture lens with IS. It’s my go-to lens for up-close hand held work. If I had money to burn, I suppose the Sigma would be great for very specific shots, but it just means another lens to carry around. Also, if you’re shooting more “locked down” film style on a tripod etc, this lens could be a good choice.

      Scot.

  17. December 17, 2013, 5:09 pm   /  Reply

    Hi Scot,
    I have been working with the C100 for over a month now. I love it’s professional video camera features. I have the Zacuto viewfinder mounted on it most of the time. Since I am shooting mainly outdoors, this is important. But the funky rubber band support is not the best. I am also concerned about breaking the LCD off as I am often hiking with the camera at my side. I may have to learn to work with the tiny viewfinder in rugged situations.

    The AVCHD format is not as friendly as the 7D codec. I cannot easily preview clips once on the computer. Log and transfer on FCP7 is about the same. One big issue is banding. I was shooting hawks against a blue sky. The clips had very bad banding when played back on a monitor which only got worse when imported into FCP7. If anyone has way to improve this please let me know. May have to go with an external drive at some point. Other than that the footage looks great.

    I am using the EFS 15-85 with great results.

    Jim

  18. January 22, 2014, 7:52 am   /  Reply

    Hi Scott,
    I’ve had the C100 a couple of weeks. Love the camera, and in particular its low-light capability. Had to shoot at ISO 32,000 (you read that right…thousand) recently. Cleaned up pretty nicely in post!

    Yes, I agree with you on your list of pluses and minuses. One of the things that I would add to the list of “beefs” about the C100 is the lack of continuous auto-iris. Yes, I know the “purists” will be arming themselves with pitchforks and torches, and remove my professional accreditation, but there are times when it’s just plain nice/important to have….along with the continuous auto-focus, that we already have. For instance, imagine yourself hangin’ out the door of a helicopter, circling a subject. I do this a lot! So the lighting is going to vary from front lighting to side lighting to back lighting. If you want to maintain some semblance of continuity, you’ll have to keep your finger on the auto-iris button full time. I have enough other things to do in that time frame, i.e. adjust focal length, etc. Surely Canon could enable that continuous feature, with the option for the purists to turn it off. Had it on my XLH1 and XHA1. It was great. And how about when you’re focused (and exposed) on a dark wooded background, waiting for a white boat to sail across your viewfinder. Think you’re good enough to adjust proportionately in time? I’m not. Wait ’til you see the device I’ve invented to accomplish this! Maybe when Canon sees the lengths that one will go through to achieve this, they’ll reconsider. If enough of us call in to the Pro Hotline (1-855-246-3367) and register this as a feature, they’ll get the message. The customer service people that man/people those hotlines told me they do record requests. Presumably, if enough requests for a feature show up, it will happen as a firmware upgrade. Your vote will count!

    Len

    • osuga
      February 25, 2014, 12:12 am   /  Reply

      Hi Len,

      AFAIK, The continuous auto-iris you mentioned available with only one lenses “EF-S 18-135mm IS STM” for the moment. I’ve got mine.

      Osuga From Tokyo.

      • Len
        February 27, 2014, 7:50 am   /  Reply

        Thank you for you response, Osuga. Actually, Canon, in one of their tutorials for the C100 mention 2 STM lenses with which the auto iris will work. Unfortunately, neither of those is useful to me. I need something with a wider angle that will work with the auto iris.
        “6. In addition to the EF-S18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM, the function to enable continuous focusing and correct aperture on a subject in the middle of the screen when one of the two EF STM lenses is attached, has been extended to include the EF-S18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens.” This was quoted from this link: http://www.canonwatch.com/firmware-updates-canon-eos-c300-eos-c100-available-download/

        Canon also makes a 40 mm STM lens, but none of these is useful to me.

        Len

        Len

  19. David
    February 19, 2014, 10:05 am   /  Reply

    Great informative post! Do you happen to know if you can adjust the left and right xlr audio volumes independently?

    • Scot McDonald
      February 19, 2014, 10:25 am   /  Reply

      Hi David,
      Yes. The detachable handle includes two independent audio level control dials – one for each XLR input.

      Cheers!
      Scot

  20. M PETER
    March 5, 2014, 1:48 am   /  Reply

    Hi Scot,
    thanks for a good review,I am planning to buy one but worried about editing wedding footage on fcp7.Is there anyway in 2014 to deal with the codec on fcp7 and color grade & also do effects work for wed footage.
    Thanks
    m peter

  21. Pim Van Hemmen
    March 23, 2014, 6:49 pm   /  Reply

    Best C100 review and comments yet. Only thing I did not see is the crop factor of the C100. What does my 24-70 turn into on the C100?

    • Scot McDonald
      March 25, 2014, 9:51 am   /  Reply

      Hi there Pim Van Hemmen,
      Yes, the crop factor. I’ll admit that moving from a full size sensor on my 5D MII took some time to get used to. My wide angle lenses weren’t that wide anymore. A 24mm lens for example will feel more like a 35mm. But, like most things, I did get used to it and I don’t feel it’s a huge issue moving forward. It also means that you can take advantage of less expensive lenses made specifically for cropped sensors such as Canon’s EF-S series. I really like my 17-55mm f/2.8 L Series lens with IS. I use it a lot. Full frame sensors do give you more light sensitivity due to the fact that they’re just physically larger and gather in more light, but the C100’s ISO rating and performance is amazing so that’s not really an issue.

      The crop factor of the C100 is 1.6 – so your 24-70mm will feel and look more like something close to 35-110mm. To give me a wide enough lens for real wide shots I bought a relatively inexpensive Canon EF-S 10-22mm which works great. That more-or-less gives me a 16-35mm,

      Cheers!
      Scot

  22. MILAGROS CIPRIAN
    April 29, 2014, 3:56 pm   /  Reply

    Hello, thanks for your help.

  23. MILAGROS CIPRIAN
    April 29, 2014, 3:57 pm   /  Reply

    Hello.
    It will be a burden or any kind of issues using the F4 stops lens?
    Thanks.

    • Scot McDonald
      May 22, 2014, 12:41 pm   /  Reply

      No, not all. My Canon 24-105mm f/4 is a great all around lens due to it’s Image Stabilization and versatile zoom range. The downside of course is that it’s not the best in low light and you don’t get as much depth-of-field control as you would on a faster lens such as a f/2.8. For all around usefulness, quality and value, it’s a great choice.

      Cheers!
      Scot

  24. MILAGROS CIPRIAN
    April 29, 2014, 4:00 pm   /  Reply

    Also, wich one do you preffer to choose? The Tokina 11-16mm 2.8 or the Canon 10-22mm 3.5-4.6?
    Thanks.

    • Scot McDonald
      May 22, 2014, 12:43 pm   /  Reply

      For video, I always prefer to choose a constant aperture lens rather than variable. So, I would go with the Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8,

      Thanks!
      Scot

  25. MILAGROS CIPRIAN
    April 29, 2014, 4:13 pm   /  Reply

    Hello, Scot.
    I wonder if with the new firmware update the vigneting situacion is corrected automatically or still you having to do it manually…turning it on/off?
    Thanks.
    Milagros Ciprian

    • Scot McDonald
      May 22, 2014, 12:34 pm   /  Reply

      Hi Milagros,
      Are you referring to the vignetting when using EF-S lenses? If so, I don’t believe the new firmware solves this issue and you still need to activate the EF-S menu option to crop the image slightly.

  26. Louise
    May 10, 2014, 8:33 am   /  Reply

    Hello Scot,
    great article and all the reasons I bought the C100 (read this after buying it so glad purchase seems justified). Just wondered if you might spare the time to answer a couple of queries now I have been using it for a while. What method do you use for white balancing? Also – I completely understand what you mean about the ND filters and trying to get more than f5.6 in bright daylight. I tend to leave the ISO in the ‘sweet spot’ at 850. Do you fiddle with it much. Also, if you are running and gunning in variable conditions, do you avoid the temptation to fiddle with the aperture dial?
    Grateful if you have any pointers from your experience.
    Thanks,
    Louise

    • May 16, 2014, 9:07 am   /  Reply

      This is what I have read about ISO – If you are using C-Log/Cinema 9 then yes the native ISO is 850. This ISO gives you better Dynamic Range for the log file. If you are using Wide DR then you dont need to use 850 ISO.

      I use the Wide DR and set my ISO at 320. I am hoping this gives me a little less noise. But I do not know that for sure.

      • Louise
        May 27, 2014, 1:42 am   /  Reply

        Thanks Jim,

        really helpful – will have a play around.

        Louise

        • August 17, 2014, 5:44 pm   /  Reply

          I am still getting mixed messages regarding what ISO setting to use with Wide DR on the C100. People are still claiming 850 gives the best results. Then I hear that Canon reps say 640 is equal to zero gain. Shooting at 320 decreases your latitude from 5 stops at 640 to 3.9 at 320. Although I have been getting great results at 320 I will start shooting at 640 and see if I notice a difference.

          Anyone have any thoughts on this. I shoot Wide DR because I do not have the time (or budget) to correct everything in post. I am also kind of old school in that you try to get right in the camera, not fix it in post.

          • Scot McDonald
            August 19, 2014, 2:56 pm   / 

            Hi Jim,
            I know I’ve been guilty of dialling down the ISO on more than one occasion to stay at the f-stop I want. I knew that I was supposedly giving up some dynamic range etc but sometimes when you’re on the fly you just have to do what you have to do. I didn’t really think it was a big deal. I did just read an interesting article however that may have changed my mind somewhat. Check this out. Very interesting indeed.

            Exposing with Canon Cinema camera, using Canon Native ISO
            http://www.cinema5d.com/exposing-with-native-iso/

    • Scot McDonald
      May 22, 2014, 12:16 pm   /  Reply

      Hi Louise,
      Sorry for the late reply, I’ve been out of the country and I’m just finally getting caught up on everything!

      Yes, it’s a bit of a dance balancing f/stop and ISO. I have to admit, I do play with the ISO quite a bit to maintain proper exposure and the aperture I want to shoot at. I know that moving from the camera’s native ISO of 850 compromises dynamic range to some degree, but I prefer to make that sacrifice rather than having my aperture all over the place. I like to control my aperture for purposeful depth-of-field creative reasons rather than as a function of exposure.

      One other element you can introduce is a screw-on variable ND filter. There are some draw-backs as they can vignette in certain situations, but they do provide quick and easy additional exposure control that allows you to maintain a constant f/stop and ISO setting. A variable ND also allows you to make subtle and smooth exposure adjustments within a shot if absolutely needed.

      Hope this helps!
      Scot

    • Scot McDonald
      May 22, 2014, 12:23 pm   /  Reply

      Hi again Louise,
      Sorry, forgot to answer your white balance question. I tend to mostly use the manual selection and dial in the temperature I want rather than balancing on a white card etc. I find this gives me the greatest amount of control and then I can fine tune it in post of needed.

      Scot

      • Louise
        May 27, 2014, 1:43 am   /  Reply

        Thanks Scot,

        really helpful on both counts.

        Louise

  27. May 16, 2014, 8:26 am   /  Reply

    C100 / ZACUTO CAMERA TIP – VF Support
    One of the drawbacks of the Canon C100 video camera it that the in camera viewfinder is difficult to use and for outdoor work the LCD is hard to see in bright sun. ZACUTO came out with a slip on viewfinder that works great on the C100 LCD. However, the added weight of the Zacuto loop requires addtional support to keep it in a good viewing position. Zacuto provides rubber bands that attach to the camera and the viewfinder to help correct this. It sort of works but tends to flop around and I am concerned that the added stress may damage the LCD mount. Specially since I am often hiking around in the field with the camera slung on my shoulder.

    I worked on several solutions to this problem. I ended up using a bracket that mounts on the top ot the camera handle and a short articulating arm that attaches to the 1/4″ holes in the Zacuto viewfinder. This works very well and provides strong support for the LCD & Loop.

    The short 4″ articulating arm limits the range of the viewfinder. A 6″ arm would be ideal but I have yet to find one at a reasonable price. I tried an 8″ arm and it was too long and got in the way. A 2.5″ x 2.5″ bracket may solve the problem as well.

    This solution is working very well. See Photos at http://fieldnotes.com/fieldnotes.html

    • john
      June 17, 2014, 8:12 am   /  Reply

      C100 / ZACUTO CAMERA TIP is nothing but another hype from Zacuto. this “solucition” is not convenient, I found it bulky and defeating the purpose of purchasing c100 as a small and compact camera.
      I have nothing against Zacuto, they make some good products but hanging that intimidating have black plastic box on c100 LCD not the solution I would be looking for.
      Instead they could have invent some rubber cup with a magnifier – that can be placed over existing c100 VF.

      • July 19, 2014, 11:44 am   /  Reply

        Hi John, Kind of a bitter response. I can assure you this is not “another hype from Zacuto”. I am just trying to make the C100 workable for my needs. Perhaps you should have sprung for the C300. Even with a better eye cup I find it difficult to use the viewfinder on the C100. I like the C100 for its professional video camera features, large sensor and canon lens compatibility. Plus, when needed, I can trim it down to just the camera body and a lens. Having lugged full size (and much more expensive) rigs around for years the C100 even with the Zacuto viewfinder is still a very light weight, compact rig.

  28. July 19, 2014, 8:09 am   /  Reply

    I’ve been using the rubber eye cup from Zacuto’s magnifier for the Canon 5DMK2, and it has been working quite well. You do have to ease the LCD panel past the eyecup when opening and closing, but that has become second nature. I use one of those plastic tie wraps to give it a little extra security. The thinner the tie wrap, the better it seems to work, as it catches the grooves.

    I’m kind of surprised someone hasn’t come up with an eye cup that’s less expensive than the one from the “kickstarter project, which I don’t believe has a magnifier.

  29. August 30, 2014, 7:05 am   /  Reply

    Just a terrific post. And learned comments. Thanks to all! Just wondering if, after all the add-ons seemingly required (evf, 4:2:2 recorder, etc.) whether one should just wait for the c300 to come down in price. And yes, it ‘depends.’ 🙂

  30. November 19, 2014, 10:09 am   /  Reply

    So, what’s your feeling, gang? Are you likely to trade up to the C100 MK2? Are there enough improvements to make it worth while? The big ones for me are the (supposedly) improved viewfinder and LCD screens. And they talk about improved processing.

    But, it still ain’t 4K!

    • Scot McDonald
      November 28, 2014, 7:30 am   /  Reply

      Hi there Len,
      Sorry for being so late posting and replying to your comment! I’ve been crazy busy the past few weeks and many things have slipped through the cracks. I’m finally getting a chance to get caught up.

      Like most people I’m sure, the C100 MK2 announcement took me by surprise. We knew something would come along eventually, but it seemed to just drop out of the sky on a random day. But, I think it was good news. I recognize it doesn’t offer much in the way of additional capabilities and new features, but it does finally address the issues that were holding this camera back from being a perfect solution for what it was intended for. For me, I come from the old school world when decent cameras cost about $35,000, so I’ll always look at a camera like the C100 and marvel at what you get for about $5,500. My current C100 has been a real workhorse and has paid for it self many, many times over – and continues to. From a business perspective, it was a very good purchase. No, the MK2 doesn’t offer 4K capabilities, but 90% of my work is in good old HD and will likely continue that way for the foreseeable future. So, having an improved version of the C100 with an actual viewfinder, an LCD screen that fully tilts in both directions and improved processing with less noise in low light – that’s a no brainer for me. It will eliminate the annoyances that have been so frustrating with what is an otherwise great little camera. Even if I invest in some kind of 4K camera in the next year or two, I know I’ll put the C100 MK2 to work, and like the version before it, it’ll be a great money maker. After all, that’s what we’re in this business for!

      As always, I look forward to hearing what you have to think as well.

      Cheers!
      Scot

  31. John
    December 7, 2014, 3:24 pm   /  Reply

    Will look forward to your first impressions & review once you have the new MK2 in hand. I’ll probably pull the trigger on this one as well. Keep up the great work!

  32. Danny Chavez
    January 2, 2015, 9:12 am   /  Reply

    Thanks for your review ! I really want to buy one, but now that the new c100 mark II is coming out ,I might wait. Also the C100 has been marked down in price to under 4grand now. So I’m guessing Canon might bring up some new C100 models for this year (2015). Thanks

  33. April 4, 2015, 11:12 am   /  Reply

    I went for the C100 MK2. Lovin’ it. So much more usable than the original. As others have said on other sites….this is what the original C100 should have been.

    • Scot McDonald
      April 4, 2015, 3:27 pm   /  Reply

      Couldn’t agree more Len! I imagine we’re going to see improvements in the C300 shortly such as 4K recording. This gives Canon the ability to add the features we’ve been begging for in the C100 without making the C300 somewhat redundant. Hope you enjoy yours as much as I do mine.

      Cheers!
      Scot

  34. April 7, 2015, 3:13 pm   /  Reply

    Hi Scot…One improvement I would like to see via a firmware upgrade in the MK2 would be the addition of 4:2:2: When the C300 comes out with its 4K (as expected), that upgrade in the C100 MK2 wouldn’t eat into the sales of the C300, so that’s a “gimme” that should be passed along.

    • Scot McDonald
      June 2, 2015, 9:39 am   /  Reply

      You’re right Len. That would be a gift from the Canon camera gods! Seriously, if they can put 4:2:2 50 mbps in the new $2,500 XC10, what not the C100 for goodness sake.

      Cheers!
      Scot

  35. Francisco Litardo
    April 21, 2015, 3:56 pm   /  Reply

    Hello Scot – Thanks for your post. Did you ever determine if shooting with the EF-S lens without activating the EF-S setting made a difference in your shots? The last time I used the EF-S lens you use, I activated the setting, but would like to shoot a project in the next few days without activating the setting and wondered what you suggest now that you have used the camera for a while.

    Thanks in advance for your reply.

    Thanks

    Francisco

    • Scot McDonald
      April 22, 2015, 6:05 am   /  Reply

      Hi Francisco,
      Activating EF-S mode slightly zooms in and crops the edges of the image to avoid vignetting on wide angle shots. If you don’t want to have this on full-time so everything you shoot is slightly cropped, you can always leave it off and fix any offending shots in post. You’re essentially doing the same thing in editing rather than committing to it in-camera while you shoot. I’ve done this in the past without any issues. I tend to leave EF-S mode off so I don’t have to remember to keep turning it on and off when I’m switching between EF-S and EF-L lenses.

      Cheers!
      Scot

  36. Jose Angel
    May 14, 2015, 6:07 am   /  Reply

    Hello, Scot, sorry for my poor english. It is not my mother langue.
    I would like to have your advise; if you were going to buy your camera now, 2015 may, for journalistic video and mini documentary, and if your budget were 3.000 euros (3.500 dollars), which camera would you buy? An C100 classic? The Sony A7S? The Pana GH4? Any other? I have a 70D now, with 4 lenses.
    Thank you very much for your blog, I learn a lot withy you two.
    Jose Angel

    • Scot McDonald
      June 2, 2015, 9:35 am   /  Reply

      Hi there Jose,
      Sorry for the very late reply. I’ve travelling a lot lately and haven’t had much time at all for our blog. But, I finally have some time to get caught up.

      Your question is something that almost everyone is asking themselves. There are so many options now it’s almost impossible to answer. In my opinion, I don’t think there’s a “perfect” camera out there. Almost ever camera has its pros and cons. You just have to weigh them out and see what works best for what you want to achieve. So many cameras now have amazing picture quality but are very frustrating to actually use. Others offer great form factor and usability but lack the more artistic, shallow depth-of-field style of large sensor cameras. It’s absolutely maddening to try to figure out.

      I would start by asking yourself what is more important to you. Is your work more about being an artistic story teller and it’s all about the final image? Or, do you need to work quickly and capture real life as it unfolds in real time in front you?

      If you think you’re the artistic story teller, then I would say a DSLR style camera and lenses may be the way to go. If you’re capturing more real-time events and need to run-and-gun, perhaps a more traditional video camera like the Canon XF205 is a good option.

      That’s something I quite like about the Canon C100. It bridges these two worlds quite well and gives you the best of both worlds to a large degree.

      I hope this helps a little. As I said, your question is almost impossible to answer. You have to think hard and figure out what’s going to work best for you. For me, I think it’s important to choose a camera you’ll actually enjoy using. I doesn’t matter how good the picture quality is, if you really hate using it’s not worth it.

      Cheers!
      Scot

    • Jim
      June 2, 2015, 10:06 am   /  Reply

      I love my C 100 but I really miss having the long (20x) and smooth zoom lens of a professional video camera. Having to carry and change several lens for run & gun work is not very practical.

  37. May 23, 2015, 9:38 pm   /  Reply

    I’ve had a C100 for about a week now and from early tests I’ve done, it appears that turning on the EF-S correction feature does actually introduce a small amount of aliasing into the image so it’s probably best to just leave it deactivated. Even Canon’s own instruction manual for the camera says it’s usually best to leave it off.

    • Scot McDonald
      June 2, 2015, 8:49 am   /  Reply

      Thanks Travis. I agree. Best to leave it off and fix any issues in post if needed.

    • Jim
      June 2, 2015, 10:00 am   /  Reply

      This is good to know. I have not noticed this aliasing. I think it is best to just use full frame lenses and avoid the issue altogether. Anyone interested in a Canon EFS 15-85? Maybe I will just keep it for my 7D.

  38. tim
    October 11, 2015, 10:36 am   /  Reply

    Hi, i bought a 17-55 based partly on this story and i must say, although i like the ergonomics of the lens i do see a lot of quality difference with the L series. It’s softer and less sharp. So it was really not an option to keep it. This is offcourse a personal view.

  39. Andrea
    July 6, 2016, 8:45 am   /  Reply

    I just LOVED your genuine, simple reading review. I just bought myself a mkI used C100 (yes, it’s 2016 but who cares when you get such great images from this compact and affordable camera), coming from a 5D MkII dslr world, and can hardly wait to turn it on and film something!!! I’ll look for your other reviews Sir, thanks for sharing.

    A.

  40. Anthony
    August 3, 2016, 1:12 am   /  Reply

    Hi, was googling pros n cons about the c100 and your review came up on top. All my worries was more or less answered, mostly about the low light. Great. Like the one above said, I know it’s 2016, but I’m a rental guy, and I never thought about buying my own. But now I friend asked me if I wanted to his c100 he never uses for about $2000, including the 18-135 lens. My only concern is that it doesn’t shoot 50fps or faster for slow no, but it would be a good day-to-day camera for me I thought. I already have a Ninja 2 from earlier needs. My question is, are you still using yours and would you buy a C100 today? Thanks in advance

    • Dean Miles
      October 30, 2016, 10:27 am   /  Reply

      Hi Anthony, I’ve just moved back into Sony products for some of the new features and operating functions. Depending on what you’re shooting, the C100 is a great camera. If you have a need for 50fps or faster then that could be a deal breaker for you.

  41. Fabio Silva
    September 7, 2016, 11:05 am   /  Reply

    hey guys i got a c100mk ii and i love it. i got the ef24-105 and i the quality of image is great. i tested however with my old t2i kit lense the 18-55mm f3.5 but the image was terrible. i loved the wideness of it, but the quality of the image was really poor compared with the ef24-105.
    i would like to get the Canon EF-S 10-18mm f/4.5-5.6 IS STM Lens or Canon EF-S 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 USM SLR but im afraid those might not be good quality wise either. anyone tried it out with video? thanks

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