This was a hell of a week for camera announcements. Canon announced its brand new C200 a few days ago, and today Panasonic finally launched its new budget-friendly cinema camera – the EVA1. Both cameras are clearly aimed at the same market (they cost around $ 8,000 each and have similar features / ergonomics), and both offer a lot for your money … At the same time, there are some fairly clear differences between the two two that should be considered before pulling out your wallet to pick one up.
I haven't had a chance to shoot with either camera (I haven't been in a beta test of these models), so my thoughts here are largely based on technical data. Therefore, in the future I will certainly do some more extensive checks for both cameras as soon as I can test them in the real world.
Let's start with the Canon C200 –
After many years of seemingly ignoring their video customers' demands for better features and more competitive prices, Canon seems to be taking a step in the right direction with this camera. If I were to buy a C-series camera today, I would buy a C200 immediately over a C300 II because in some ways it offers more value at a lower price.
Here are the specifications –
- Super 35mm CMOS sensor
- Dual pixel CMOS AF technology
- Dual DIGIC DV 6 processors
- 4K DCI and UHD, 1920 x 1080
- 59.94p, 50p, 29.97p, 25p, 24p, 23.98p
- Canon RAW Light, MP4, MP4 Proxy
- Integrated EVF, 2 x XLR audio inputs
- Rotating 4-inch LCD monitor, camera handle
- 1 x CFast card, 2 x SD card slots
- 1 x SDI output, 1 x Ethernet connection
- $ 7,500
I don't doubt for a second that the C200 will produce beautiful images because it combines Canon's excellent color science with a new RAW codec. The fact that RAW can be recorded internally will be a big selling point for narrative filmmakers, although with 128 GB CFast cards, only about 15 minutes of content are supposed to be recorded.
Combined with the fact that the camera only has a single C-Fast slot, data management on the set is likely to be a little more difficult than with the C300 II or other non-Canon cinema cameras. Nevertheless, that would not be a deal breaker for me personally, since CFast cards will only continue to fall in price next year, which will make this a non-problem over time.
The camera also has some outstanding features, such as: B. the dual-pixel autofocus, which is ideal for shooters who work as a one-man band and have to pull their own focus. This is not a feature that I would use very often myself, but I know many others who would!
The ergonomics of the camera also look great and are exactly the same as the other Canon C-series cameras that I have enjoyed using in the past.
Canon finally seems to have got it right in a Nuthsell. An affordable cinema camera that can take RAW internally and is actually positioned to be competitive on the market …
At the same time, it already feels like the brand new Panasonic EVA1 is raining on the parade in Canon.
We have been waiting for Panasonic to release an AF100 replacement for years. At some point, Panasonic led the indie film community on an extremely low budget with its DVX100, although they eventually lost their hold when the market for large sensor camcorders got going and were left behind.
Since then, they have offered some fantastic options in the lower range (GH2 / 3/4/5) and the upper range (Varicam), but they had a gap in their product range that the AF100 was once in. It looks like this for many years, but they have finally managed to swing a new camera to close this gap, and one that looks like it could really disrupt the market.
We don't have all the details on the EVA1 yet, as it was only revealed today. But here's what we know –
- Super 35 5.7K sensor
- 5.7K raw output (with firmware update)
- Internal recording with 400 MBit / s / 10 Bit / 4: 2: 2
- Canon EF Mount
- Dual native ISO
- V-Log picture profile
- Up to 60p in 4K
- Up to 240 fps in 2K
- Two SD card slots
- Available this fall
- Approximate price: $ 8000
It may have taken ages for Panasonic to finally release this beast, but it looks like it was worth the wait!
Everything on the camera on paper looks incredible. It seems to offer as many of the same features as its bigger brothers (The Varicam / Varicam LT) in a smaller package and for less money.
Similar to the Varicam, the EVA1, for example, has two native ISO values, making it an incredible option for shooters in low light conditions. It also includes ready-to-use V-Log and the same great color science that Panasonic has delivered with its high-end Varicams.
I recently released this short film that I made on Varicam LT. and loved the pictures I got from the camera. It was so easy to expose and rate, and I can only imagine that the EVA1 can expect similar quality and results.
I especially like the fact that the EVA1 records 4K internally oversampled. This means that the captured images benefit from the additional resolution of the 5.7K sensor and produce footage that is likely to be superior to many cameras that directly capture 4K DCI. As a bonus, the EVA1 can issue 5.7KB RAW in a future firmware update, which is pretty incredible if you need a higher resolution shot.
I'm also thrilled to see that Panasonic chose a full Super 35mm sensor rather than an MFT sensor. I have nothing against MFT sensors, but for many of us who record story material, Super 35mm is optimal for so many reasons … Panny really seems to have understood it completely.
CANON C200 VS PANASONIC EVA1
I'm sure the Canon C200 will be a great camera, but I wonder how it will compete with the Panasonic EVA1 around the world.
Almost all of the outstanding features that Canon offers can match or exceed with Panasonic. This includes: color science, internal 4K, native EF mount, super 35mm sensor and more.
Panasonic offers significantly more special functions such as 240 fps recording, dual native ISO and 5.7 KB RAW functions, to name just a few. Although Canon also offers some of its own advantages, such as: B. internal RAW and Dual Pixel AF, which can be a win for some users …
Personally, I would no doubt take the EVA1 over the C200. For the same price, the EVA1 simply does a lot more, and all the special features of the C200 that the EVA1 lacks would not be a deal breaker for me. This also includes internal RAW – as I know at first hand how flexible Pansonic's 400 Mbit / s codec can be in the mail.
But more importantly, I like to invest in products from companies that go in a direction I believe in. I'm not saying Canon doesn't, and I think the C200 is a well-considered course change for their business. At the same time, given their recent track record, they're still struggling hard, and right now I just wholeheartedly believe in Panasonic as a brand.
What do you think? Is there anything that would make you choose the C200 over the EVA1? Or do you feel like me?
Leave a comment below.
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Noam Kroll is an award-winning filmmaker from Los Angeles and founder of the boutique production house Creative Rebellion. His work can be seen at international film festivals, on network television and in various publications around the world. Follow Noam on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for more content like this!