Director: written by Paddy Bartram
Instead of putting the new camera on a tripod in our office and going through a few settings, we decided to do something a little different. In order to really put the C500 through its paces, we thought what better to do than to drive 2 and a half hours at 5 in the morning to the South Kent coast and shoot some abandoned boats and a power station!
Dungeness was our destination but unfortunately when we got there the beautiful sunrise we had hoped for had been replaced by ominous grey clouds…. But this didn’t deter us and we rigged up the camera and started shooting some landscapes.
Although we had had a quick look at the new setup in the office this was the first time shooting with it in the field. The C500 is configured in a very similar way to both the Canon C100, C300 & C300 mk2, the latter of which we have used on many different shoots over the last year. This made it very easy to locate all the camera's features. The Odyssey 7Q+ was also very user friendly, despite the many different recording frame rates, resolutions and codecs on offer. The menus were easy to navigate and the screen itself is nice and bright so there were no problems shooting outdoors with it.
Dungeness is hugely popular with photographers, commercial shoots and student’s looking to film their latest short film, we could see why, it was an incredibly interesting location with many different quirks that could make for some captivating imagery.
We drove a few miles further down the coast and setup the tripod on top of some sand dunes where we had been told we would be allowed to film. Here we ran through a few more tests before moving to the beach to take a look at the C500’s slow motion capabilities. Although the amount of data produced can be quite large the C500 can shoot 120fps at what’s called 4K Half Raw, quite impressive for a camera with such an exceptional image and price point. This coupled with the fact that there is no crop on the C500 when filming 120fps makes it a sure fire winner over the C300 mark ii when it comes to slow mo.
Although on paper the C300 mark ii beats the C500 when it come to dynamic range we found that it handles very well in contrasty situations and if you shoot for the highlights it still retains a lot of information in the shadows with no noise visible at its native ISO of 850. The combination of the C500 and the Odyssey 7Q+ also makes it possible to record 2K 30fps in 12bit prores, and 2k 60fps in 10bit Prores HQ - pretty incredible for a sub £10,000 camera.
Finally it was time to get the ronin out! Balancing the C500 was incredible easy and the Odyssey 7Q+ could be powered by d-tap off of the Ronin battery thus keeping the overall weight down.
All in all it was a very successful visit to the South Coast. We learn a lot about the camera and having reviewed the footage we’re very pleased with how it looks and looking forward to shooting some more with it in the New Year.
Have a look at the first images we shot on the camera in the short film at the top of the page – a camera test with an odd narrative, starring me!
“Against The Wall” is the third track in a series of releases from JKP, London’s John Kilpatrick
The atmosphere of this track coupled with the haunting female vocals, especially in the chorus, worked particularly well with the material we had shot. JKP kindly granted us permission to use it for our camera test turned unofficial music video!
Keep an eye out over the next few months for new tracks from JKP.