Pro video blog…Produced by Philip Johnston DoP/Editor


Having shot the sum total of 45 minutes of Canon 5D mk11 footage to date I am increasingly getting put off by “Wobble Vision”. I then look at some of the “Masters” of HD SLR filming to see it’s not just me !

Wobble Vision is nothing short of the cameraman’s ability or should I say lack of ability to keep the camera steady whilst filming, this is partly due to the impractical design of the SLR itself, we are so used to having “Steady Shot” in our camcorders that it comes as a shock to see how unsteady we all are.

It’s not all down to the shakes, HD has a tendency to magnify mistakes and small detail which is why actresses hate HD productions because is shows up the smallest flaw in make up etc. Canon have IS lenses which means Image Stabilizer…this can dampen the shakes quite considerably but sadly the most popular “L” lenses used to date are the 24-70 f2.8 L lens and the 50 f1.2 L lens both are not image stabilized.

Canon would be better to have the IS in the camera but that takes away their lucrative extra cost IS lens market so for the mean time we are going to have to use monopods or tripods in order to stabilize those rogue shots…the alternative is to accept a drop in standards…again…and I don’t think that will be good for our trade.

Personally I think this is an expensive game… First it was let’s all buy video adaptors…before you all got sore backs…now it’s HD SLRs with their two plus points shallow DoF and the ability to film in low light…big wow…once Scarlet appears you will all be following the pied piper down that expensive road…mark my words.


Having been working in the video business since 1988 I have amassed a great amount of knowledge of both the kit and production values over the last 30 years.

2 thoughts on “Wobble Vision from an HD SLR near you

  1. The DSLR craze is fun to watch. As each successive fad passes (with the small cadre of self appointed showmen) Ebay becomes littered with the leavings of demoralized followers. Somewhere out of view of the blogs, posts and reviews there is the silent majority of professionals who are using video cameras to make video programs that satisfy the needs of our clients, and ironically using purpose built video cameras to make them.

  2. Maybe you have a point though I use a digital compact – a Canon SX200 IS – and it has built-in image stablisation which sometimes works well.

    The boon of these new video features on still cameras open up the world of film to people like me. I mostly shoot my shots with a tripod and while somewhat limited, compared to a “pro” video camera, the simple controls, great autofocus and good metering mean I can concentrate on getting a great shot. See for some examples under Lightroom Productions.

    I work in the High Nepal Himalaya a lot and the digital cameras have ruined photojournalism. Still I have great stories to tell and HD digi cams are light and great for the work I do.

    I now look at both dedicated pro video and prosumer compacts with HD and DSLRs. I may end up with an extra porter by the looks of things, as all these cameras have their pros and cons!

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