by DIABL0
12 replies
I could use a recommendation from those shooting video with a DSLR.

I want to shoot some talking head type videos where the camera is mounted 2-3 feet away.

I plan to just start out with a Canon SL2, which from what I understand will produce just as good of a video as more expensive cameras like the D80.

The kit lens is an 18-50mm, but I was thinking of just buying the body and a 10-18mm.

Anyone with actual experience care to chime in on what would be best for the situation?
#dslr #video
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  • Profile picture of the author SkeetMads
    I have sent you a PM.
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  • Profile picture of the author writeaway
    I suggest you contact top vloggers on Youtube and pick their brains

    Randomly searching for 'best DSLR" on Google is probably going to yield SEO'd junk riddled with conflicts of interest

    Many vloggers readily give out production advice. I remember watching a few political vloggers talk briefly about their recording setup.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Meaney
    IMO the type of lens is more important.

    50mm and 24mm are really popular for talking head shots.

    Also, the audio is gonna be really important... heard one of the guru's once say that people will tolerate crap video but they won't tolerate bad audio.

    So the mic you choose is important.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tom Addams
    Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

    I could use a recommendation from those shooting video with a DSLR.

    I want to shoot some talking head type videos where the camera is mounted 2-3 feet away.

    I plan to just start out with a Canon SL2, which from what I understand will produce just as good of a video as more expensive cameras like the D80.

    The kit lens is an 18-50mm, but I was thinking of just buying the body and a 10-18mm.

    Anyone with actual experience care to chime in on what would be best for the situation?
    It'll do the job as an entry-level DSLR but I'd recommend you future protect your videos by shooting in 4K.

    Aside from future-protection, you're going to find editing in 4K quite useful. The norm (on YT at least) is 1080p but that won't be the case for long. One argument against 4K is that not everyone is rocking a 4K monitor. You'll still find the resolution of 4k much more crisp even on a 1080p monitor and it won't be long before, even in monitors, 4K is the norm.

    Having said all that, the Rebel 2 is a solid DSLR, and it has the necessary flip-out LCD for vlogging.

    You mention the Canon D80. Avoid it. If you don't care about 4K and just want a solid 1080P DSLR then I'd go with the Canon 70D. It's a better camera IMO, and if you look around (check out Casey Neistat) you'll see that I'm not alone in this thinking.

    I can give you plenty of alternative options but I'd need to know your upper budget. Throw a figure at me and I'll offer up some suggestions. You have a bunch of good cameras, but you need to be careful. Some of them seem great on paper but they come with issues that'll cause you problems: over-heating, jelly-effect, etc.

    - Tom
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    • Profile picture of the author DIABL0
      Originally Posted by Tom Addams View Post

      It'll do the job as an entry-level DSLR but I'd recommend you future protect your videos by shooting in 4K.

      Aside from future-protection, you're going to find editing in 4K quite useful. The norm (on YT at least) is 1080p but that won't be the case for long. One argument against 4K is that not everyone is rocking a 4K monitor. You'll still find the resolution of 4k much more crisp even on a 1080p monitor and it won't be long before, even in monitors, 4K is the norm.

      Having said all that, the Rebel 2 is a solid DSLR, and it has the necessary flip-out LCD for vlogging.

      You mention the Canon D80. Avoid it. If you don't care about 4K and just want a solid 1080P DSLR then I'd go with the Canon 70D. It's a better camera IMO, and if you look around (check out Casey Neistat) you'll see that I'm not alone in this thinking.

      I can give you plenty of alternative options but I'd need to know your upper budget. Throw a figure at me and I'll offer up some suggestions. You have a bunch of good cameras, but you need to be careful. Some of them seem great on paper but they come with issues that'll cause you problems: over-heating, jelly-effect, etc.

      - Tom
      My budget is technically wide open,

      At this time I'm really just looking for the best bang for the buck when it comes to video image quality or at least that is my thinking. Don't care at all about using for photography.

      For now, I'm good with 1080P for the reason you mention and if later 4K is a must, I assume it will likely be more cost-effective when the time comes? You mentioned Casey Neistat and he recently switched back to 1080P from 4K.

      I have watched many reviews SL2, T7i, 70D, 80D, 6D Mark2 and it just seems to me that the SL2 offers the best bang for the buck. However, I am open to all suggestions and have no problem spending more if it makes sense.

      Feel free to school me if why I am wrong.
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      • Profile picture of the author Tom Addams
        Originally Posted by DIABL0 View Post

        My budget is technically wide open,

        At this time I'm really just looking for the best bang for the buck when it comes to video image quality or at least that is my thinking. Don't care at all about using for photography.

        For now, I'm good with 1080P for the reason you mention and if later 4K is a must, I assume it will likely be more cost-effective when the time comes? You mentioned Casey Neistat and he recently switched back to 1080P from 4K.

        I have watched many reviews SL2, T7i, 70D, 80D, 6D Mark2 and it just seems to me that the SL2 offers the best bang for the buck. However, I am open to all suggestions and have no problem spending more if it makes sense.

        Feel free to school me if why I am wrong.
        Has Casey said that? He tends to switch between 1080P and 4K. He uses a range of cameras, and some of them simply can't pull 4K.

        If you're happy with 1080P, then the SL2 is a solid shooter for vlogging. To save a buck, what you might want to do though is just compare test videos between the 70D and the SL2. It depends how much you'll be using the camera; you may only need limited use, so perhaps picking up a decent used 70D is all you need.

        Another option is to look beyond DSLR and consider a mirrorless camera. Compacts are also an option but it depends how much prolonged shooting you'll be doing; even the good ones have a habit of overheating and some of them limit shooting duration as a result.

        To throw some suggestions your way, I'd avoid the Sony RX100 Mark V (good on paper but has the mentioned overheating issue) and compare the SL2 and the 70D to the Panasonic GH5 (that shoots 4K). The Sony A7SII is beautiful but you don't have the flip-up LCD (essential for vlogging). But if you don't mind tethering to a laptop (so you can see the scene/ your beautiful face) either the Sony A7SII or Sony A6500 are top-notch. Both of the latter shoot 4K and you can extend their features with downloadable add-ons, free and paid.

        Before you decide on anything (and I say this just in case, small chance, you're not already doing it) make use of YouTube. Throw in searches for "[camera model here] video test" and - also - pour over the reviews. I've been in filmmaking for most of my life but I still wouldn't make a buying decision without first spending a few days on YouTube.

        - Tom
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  • Profile picture of the author superowid
    Just play with the lighting and distance. Do some test. And focus on your content. BTW you can't expect to gain same quality result compared to D80. You know it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Tom Addams
      Originally Posted by superowid View Post

      Just play with the lighting and distance. Do some test. And focus on your content. BTW you can't expect to gain same quality result compared to D80. You know it.
      The D80's a better camera, but you'd be hard pushed to see any difference between the two in a vlog. Where the D80 really wins out is photography, not videography. I was hugely disappointed with the D80. Anyone would be better off grabbing a D70 off ebay IMO.

      - Tom
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  • Profile picture of the author jbsmith
    SL2 is fine, I've also used the Nikon 3300 as a good, entry-level DSLR for talking-head videos. Have some courses up on Udemy that have some talking-head and some screen-shot videos and have received good feedback.
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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Brindamour
    Diablo,

    The most important item in a video is the content. But the picture, audio and lighting all come into play to. A smartphone will work great for most instances if the lighting and audio are good.

    Chris
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  • Good advice in the previous post. Some of those Sony's are amazing.

    It's also worth adding that, based on popularity within the YouTube community itself, here are the battle-tested cameras of choice for some of the top bloggers on YouTube in recent months:

    For home/studio shots: Canon 70D with Rode Video Mic Pro and something between a 18 - 24mm lens with an f1.8 or lower (f1.4...etc depending on your budget) with some basic adjustable lightning (or a couple of those round paper lantern balls).

    For vlogging on the go: Canon G7X Mk II (pretty great especially in low-light/restaurants and highly compact. Also features a lot of manual controls, if you like to fiddle.)

    This exact combination is used by a huge chunk of YouTubers for everything from make-up tutorials to travel vlogging and doubles as your Instagram kit when you need to work the social media stuff.

    Hope that helps.
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  • Profile picture of the author nicheblogger75
    If you are just looking to do videos of yourself taking then grab a Logitech C920 webcam. They are going for around $70 and produce awesome video quality. You'll need an external mic though because the built-in mic on that camera is awful for some reason. I use a Samson Meteorite. Awesome sound quality for $40.
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