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Which camera?


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#1 Parixit Bhattacharya

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Posted 02 October 2006 - 04:27 AM

Which camera returns the most value for my money if I had $2000 to invest in a camera?
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#2 Thanasis Diamantopoulos

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Posted 02 October 2006 - 06:38 AM

Which camera returns the most value for my money if I had $2000 to invest in a camera?


HI
You mean a film camera or a video camera? For what projects ?
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#3 Michael Collier

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Posted 02 October 2006 - 06:20 PM

The best advice I can give: Whatever camera will leave you with enough money to shoot a decent movie. At 2000 its going to look cheap by anyones standards, and you won't break out of that until you push past the 7-10K range (and better if your in the 50-100K range), so your best off just aranging a deal to rent the camera at say $500 (something like a DVX-100 for a few weeks) and spending the rest on location, props, food, gas, bribing people to look the other way while you nab a scene, food, and lots more food (its cheaper than paying people)

Getting a camera will do nothing for you. I have made thousands off other people's equipment. My clients come back to me because I get what they want the first time, I am very reliable, and I work with clients to make sure they are happy everytime. Most couldn't care less what camera I shoot on. Those that do know what to look for know I rent some of the best gear from others, and pass the cost along to them with no markup (I put two seperate charges, my day rate one line, the camera rental rate on the other, then a total). That way they know I am not upcharging just because they picked the nicer camera, and it gives them a starting point for next video they need (we loved the look you got last time, can you use the same camera?) so don't be fooled into thinking that the only way to make money in video is by buying a camera (I have seen plenty of inept people do this, and because they never learned how to attack a job, they can only get hired by equally inept clients.) Buy an NLE though when you get the money. Its a great upsale once you have shot their video, and you will always make back the money on that (I have owned 4 NLEs to date. 3 premieres and one avid based system. I have made money on all 4)

Hope this helps some.
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#4 Parixit Bhattacharya

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Posted 02 October 2006 - 09:50 PM

HI
You mean a film camera or a video camera? For what projects ?



A film camera. To shoot indie shorts.

HI
You mean a film camera or a video camera? For what projects ?


Thanks. Appreciate your guidance.
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#5 Dan Salzmann

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Posted 03 October 2006 - 03:50 PM

Sync sound or not?
What kind of films?
The camera is one thing, buying and developing filmstock is something else.
then there is maintenance of the camera and lenses and insurance.
Have you considered what all that costs? Will you have the money to use the camera?
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#6 Michael Collier

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Posted 03 October 2006 - 05:34 PM

Oh film camera. I retract my last statement. Film cameras hold their value and would be a good investment for light use. However, renting is a good option still for those cams (base it on work you have right now. If you can justify the cost after a year or so then go for it.) at 2k (I assume you want a lens included too?) you are sort of limited. I would make sure to buy used, but keep some money around for a tech to look at (no telling what condition it may be in just by looking at it)

I forget the URL, but check power brokers. They usually sell cameras in all price ranges, and I think they clean and lube and test cameras before they are sold (repairs done by factory even)
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#7 Thanasis Diamantopoulos

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Posted 04 October 2006 - 07:49 AM

Hi
There are a lot of cameras that you can by for that money.
The best choises for a new cinematographer MY OPINION
are for no sync 16mm arri st
for sync 16mm arri bl or an eclair npr.
if you can find an cheap acl also a very good camera.
My personal advice is to look at ebay and about 2000 or 2500 $ you cand find a super 16 camera.
S16 cameras are close to 16-9 for tv, you can prind to 35mm and the eclair cameras are not expencive at all
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#8 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 05 October 2006 - 02:32 AM

If your talking 35mm, your really limited to the Arri IIb, or if you get lucky, IIc and the Konvas m2, both of which are terrific cameras and both of which are pretty much MOS. There is an outside chance that you may find a decient Mitchell GC but they are VERY heavy and a bit unweldly from what I've been told. There is also an outside chance you could stumble across a deal on a usually more expensive model, but I wouldn't count on it. I would go for the camera, Konvas or Arri, that has the most acessories and lens selection and seems to look like it's in the best condition. If you get it on ebay try you may have to sevrice and /or have it fixed, so keep that in mind. You can find Arri blimps and Tobin crystal sync flat base motors for Arri on ebay as well but that's something you're gonna have to get down the road because thy're generally expensive and not going to fit into your 2 grand budget. If your looking to go with 16mm there are Arri SB s up the wazoo on ebay and I've even seen BLs go for around 2 grand or less, it's not that rare although they're usually more like 3 to 4 grand There's a couple listed at that price right now but of coarse that doesn't include shipping. As for super 16, forget it. They go as high as 35s unless you get some "Converted" one and I wouldn't trust it. All in all, I would probably look for a Konvas m2 with a 17ep or 16 apk sync motor, 3 or 4 fast lenses and 2 or more 400 ft mags unless you can find a deal on an Arri 2b with a Tobin motor, for 2 grand though it's gonna be tough. If you luck out and find one, look around and wait for a deal on a blimp then your set. B)

Edited by James Steven Beverly, 05 October 2006 - 02:36 AM.

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#9 Jon-Hebert Barto

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Posted 05 October 2006 - 02:35 PM

Power Brokers URL:

http://www.cineused.com/
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#10 Robert Price

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Posted 15 October 2006 - 05:26 PM

I'm very new at film making too. I might sound like an idiot by saying this but...

My first DV camera was a sony DCR-TRV260. I know, video sucks compaired to film. But I have to say one thing about this camera: its duriable. I once took it on an ATV ride with my friend. I wanted to be the passenger so I could film. That camera got wet, dusty, and banged around. It even slightly cracked open at one point. I just pushed it back together. To this day, it still works perfectly. So if you want to do any action shots where the camera bight be in some extreme situations, I really suggest using the DCR-TRV260. I think its about $150 now.

Be warned! This is a VERY amature camera. There is no mic in, no speaker out, no white balance adjustment, etc. ONLY use this camera when you abolutely NEED to; use this camera as a kind of "stunt double" for more dangerous shots to protect your nicer cameras. The video won't be as great, but your better equipment will be saved.
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#11 Nate Downes

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Posted 16 October 2006 - 06:10 AM

For $2k you could get a lower end 16mm or a high-end Super8 camera easily. I know a Leicina Special w/ lens will cost under $2k, as would a beaulieu and even a Canon 1014XL. Could even have the crystal motor to allow synch sound work.
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