Is the Canon 5D Mark IV Video Disappointing?

By August 30, 2016 September 2nd, 2016 Thoughts, Video

5D Mark IV Video – Disappointing?

An important point to note here is that I do not own the Canon 5D Mark IV, nor have I tested it. I am discussing the potential appeal and usefulness based on technical specifications. Real life is obviously different as, until you get out and shoot, it’s all just theory. A camera should never be judged like this but I am judging the specifications, not the camera itself.

It seems clear to me that although Canon have embraced video to some extent in the 5D Mark IV, this is very much the work horse stills camera that it always has been. In my opinion, video has been left a little behind (particularly when compared to the heyday of the revolutionary 5D Mark II) and Canon are leaving the cinematographers among us to lust after the C100, C300 and C500 cameras (you could buy nearly 3 5d cameras for the price of the C500). I actually think this is a good thing. The demands of video are so great now that incorporating it all into a DSLR would possibly steer away from the stills functionality. I want a beautiful stills camera and I will do filming with other hardware.

That said, I can’t help feel that this approach will leave many disappointed. The video here is a chat about the good and bad of the 5D Mark IV video specification. It’s an off the cuff discussion rather than a structured list. Below is a summarised list of the points I mention.

The Good

  1. 4K DCI video meaning nice cinema 17:9 aspect at 4096×2160
  2. Crop sensor means good reach on your zoom lenses at 4K
  3. 4:2:2 chroma subsampling MJPEG codec for detailed colour reproduction
  4. High bitrate ALL-I codec for lower CPU editing
  5. Touchscreen fast or slow ramping focus selection.
  6. Exact & accurate autofocus for video. Really important for 4K.

The Bad

  1. No UHD mode?! (confirmation needed). No option for 3840×2160 UHD.
  2. No 60fps at 4K.
  3. Cropped sensor at 4K.
  4. HDMI output is 8-bit only so no option for 10-bit external recorder footage.
  5. No C-LOG (forgot to mention this in the video)
  6. HDMI output is FHD only (update – didn’t mention this in the vid as I just spotted this!!)
  7. Same old poor audio connection options.

What do you think? Will the Canon offering make you want to part with £3,500?

Update 2nd September 2016

Below is a video with a Canon representative explaining some of the reasons behind Canon’s decisions with the 5D Mark IV. This is posted by Korey Rowe.


Leave a Reply