As a wedding videographer, you’ll encounter many challenges. Your locations may vary from a dim sanctuary to a bright, sunny field. You may be restricted to a single location for your camera, or you may have free access to run a multi-camera setup or make use of aerial photography. And you may or may not have access to power supply. Factor like these and many others mean that you’ll need a camera or cameras that combine high performance with compact size and versatility.
But there’s good news for the wedding videographer. The rapid advance of digital imaging technology provides you with an abundance of choices in cameras. Granted, there’s no one single camera that’s best for all aspects of wedding videography. But by careful consideration of the important factors that go into creating the best possible shot for your client’s wedding you can make a choice that’ll satisfy your need for reliability, high-performance, and versatility.
We’ve considered numerous cameras in coming to our conclusion on the best video camera for a wedding videographer. We’ll check off the factors that have helped us reach our conclusion – and we hope you’ll agree that our choice will get the job done for you, no matter what the circumstances you have to work with when you’re shooting your next wedding.
Our choice for wedding videographers – the Canon 5D Mark III
Before we get into the nitty-gritty about the Canon 5D Mark III, let’s give you a little background about the 5D series. The introduction of the Mark III’s predecessor, the EOS 5D Mark II was a revolutionary development in digital videography. Modestly priced – compared to the digital cinema cameras it was competing against – the Mark II was still capable of shooting extremely high-quality footage. Good enough, in fact, that some big-budget films employed it for action sequences or for shots where space was tight. And the Mark II was a game changer for independent filmmakers. Its compact size made it easy to transport and set up, and the ability to easily change lenses gave them great options for shooting in a variety of situations.
It’s these very attributes that make the 5D Mark III such an attractive camera for wedding videography. Canon improved upon the strengths of the Mark II and made it even more appealing for videographers by improving the controls and adding a beefed up processor and CMOS. That makes the 5D Mark III a camera ready and able to take on the varied demands you’ll encounter as a wedding videographer.
Let’s talk specs
We touched on the Mark III’s processor and CMOS already. The full-frame CMOS has a resolution of 22.3 megapixels. That’s not enormous by today’s standards, but in the redesign from the Mark II, the pixels have gained a high degree of light sensitivity. The payoff for you as a wedding videographer is versatility in a lot of different lighting scenarios. A sunset wedding in a field, a candlelit church interior, or dawn in a vineyard – whatever location you find yourself in the Mark III is a more than capable performer.
The Mark III’s Digic 5 processor boasts full HD 1080p performance for video, and has impressive image stabilization performance – that’s a great attribute if you’re doing any hand-held shooting. And image noise reduction is quite minimal, a step up from the already impressive performance of the Mark II. Once again, you can count on crisp video capture with excellent color saturation even in tough lighting conditions.
Perfect for the demands of location shoots
One of the most appealing attributes of using a DSLR for your wedding videography is the compactness of the camera body. In the case of the Mark III you not only get the compact size, but a rugged magnesium alloy body to boot. It’s more than tough enough to pack into a variety of challenging environments. A few raindrops won’t bother its water-resistant rating as well.
The Mark III boasts a 3.2” LCD screen that is easily visible even in bright and sunny conditions. Once again, that’s a real plus for the wedding videographer who’s got a full schedule of summer weddings. If you’d like to use an external monitor while shooting, the Mark III has a mini-HDMI output that’ll stream 720p content in real time. And if you’re using the Mark III for capturing audio as well as the video, there’s a handy headphone jack.
Some great easy-to-use features
Face it – as a wedding videographer you’re often working as a one-man band. Anything the camera can do to streamline your job is a welcome addition. The Mark III doesn’t disappoint here. The controls are logically laid out, and there’s been some real thought in how they’re spaced out so accidental events like hitting “power” when you meant to hit “record” just aren’t going to happen.
And there’s one especially nice feature you’ll find on the Mark III that’ll make your life as wedding videographer a lot easier. A handy multi-function button lets you assign different functions to a series of presets. Say for instance you want to quickly change between some commonly used ISO settings. Just assign the values you want to the multi-function button and you can switch between them without having to access the regular menu settings.
For memory, the Mark III will accept either Compact Flash or SD cards. In fact you can record to both simultaneously. That lets you capture backups of the footage you’ve taken – perfect for when you only get one chance to capture the action.
The bottom Line
If you’re serious about your job as a wedding videographer, the EOS 5D Mark III has the chops to capture the high-quality footage you’ll need to create an impressive presentation for your clients. And most important of all, this camera is well-suited to the types of situations you’ll find yourself in when you’re shooting in the field, where it’s got to be right the first time.
And consider the relative affordability of the Mark III. Since the Mark III has been around for a few years, you won’t have too much trouble picking up a model for a good price on the resale marketplace. That makes it much more affordable to pick up a second or third camera body to use for multi-camera shooting setups. And there are a plethora of available lenses and other accessories that work well with the Mark III. For these reasons, and for the quality of video footage you can capture, the Canon EOS 5D Mark III is our choice for best camera for wedding videography.
– Video Caddy