Art Adams wrote: “There have been a lot of cameras sold with the promise of being as good as more expensive cameras for lower cost. I have yet to find one that I personally found to be as good as the more expensive option in one way or another. It still takes money and knowhow to tame physics.”
I tend to be with Art on this one. More often than not you get what you pay for. And, it is when you push the camera “out of the comfort zone”, the limitations become much more apparent.
What doesn’t help make informed camera choices is wide-spread misinformation and claims made by some manufacturers. This is why independent tests, like the one performed by Alfonso, are so valuable. (and, to be clear, I’m not saying that Sony is making misleading claims, they are in good books most of the time).
Through my own testing I found that most digital cinema cameras have very similar dynamic range (within a stop) despite vastly different claimed performance on paper. But, even though the actual dynamic range may be similar, there are other, more critical and more clearly discernible differences: like low light performance, noise, colour accuracy and range, contrast (MTF) and artefacts (compression and aliasing). In fact, some really striking differences and relatively easy to test side-by-side or, like Alfonso did, by meticulously measuring those properties in a consistent and repeatable manner.
Pawel Achtel ACS B.Eng.(Hons) M.Sc.
“Sharp to the Edge”
ACHTEL PTY LIMITED, ABN 52 134 895 417
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From: cml-raw-log-hdr@... [mailto:cml-raw-log-hdr@...] On Behalf Of Art Adams
Sent: Tuesday, 20 April 2021 9:22 AM
Subject: [cml-raw-log-hdr] Sony FX9 camera test
The camera choice is all too often driven by ego and politics, rather than camera capabilities.
This can be true. I once had to shoot a marketing product roll-out where the client mandated we shoot in 8K for 1080p release… because. There was no reason for it other than it was cool, and 8K was 4.2x greater than 1.9K.
But this is not always the case, or even mostly the case. I don’t know of any situations where someone chose to shoot with a cheaper camera because they liked the quality more than the more expensive camera.
There have been a lot of cameras sold with the promise of being as good as more expensive cameras for lower cost. I have yet to find one that I personally found to be as good as the more expensive option in one way or another. It still takes money and knowhow to tame physics.
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