View Full Version : Video Camera or SLR Digital Camera for Making Knife Videos

Marko Tsourkan
04-18-2012, 11:00 AM
I would like to start making knife videos for every knife I sent out.

Need some advice what camera and lenses to get. I am familiar with SLR cameras more or less, but not in a video making capacity.

These will be close-up videos (similar to Maxims) to capture knife performance.

Any advice is appreciated.



04-18-2012, 11:08 AM
What's your budget and do you already own any lenses?

Marko Tsourkan
04-18-2012, 11:18 AM
I have Nikon D50 with AF-S DX Nikkor 1:3.5-4.5G ED lens.

As for a budget, I am not sure. I would have to give it a thought, once I narrow down a few options - it is a work related expense, so I will give it a different consideration than say, buying a new camera for my personal use.


04-18-2012, 11:28 AM
D90 + 105mm maro vr

04-18-2012, 11:39 AM
I don't have an opinion on what brand to get. My thought on what to get lean towards getting a video camera. You already have a fine DSLR so why replace it. There's always compromises you have to deal with when you buy equipment that combines the functions of multiple pieces into one unit. What ever you get, make sure it comes with a remote control. I think you'll find that feature extremely handy.

04-18-2012, 11:52 AM
I use a skate dolly to record various different things but it works well if you are trying to capture all angles of a knife on video. Here is a nice video of a skate dolly in use.


Michael Rader
04-18-2012, 12:22 PM
Hi Marko. I just started shooting some vids myself and am having trouble with my D5000 and stock 18X55 lens. It is good for general shooting, but when I try to get close to the object, it won't focus for me. Obviously, I have some research to do, but I think that auto-focus in my Nikon isn't a feature. That probably comes with a dedicated video camera. So, that's one thing that needs to be nailed down, as you are going to want action shots from a distance, and when you want to zoom up on your knife to show detail you want it to be crisp.

I'd love some advice on that too.


04-18-2012, 02:18 PM
on a dslr, you will run into a couple of problems:
1- lack of autofocus during video (nikon has contrast based autofocus, but it doesnt work well and you can hear the lens working in the video)
2- limit on length of video (4gb)... this can be worked around if you are willing to edit video, but can still be a PITA

On the plus side, you will get great quality video with awesome depth of field and a lot of freedom with artistic design. It's helpful to have a lens with image stabilization and zoom in the 18-100 mm range (ie. a 24-70mm or 24-105 etc.). Close MFD is also a plus, so lenses with some "macro" capabilities are nice too (or even a macro lens). If you're going to do any hand held video, google "merlin stedicam".

Getting a cheap video cam is probably easier (or a P&S with hd video capabilities)... but the dslr is more fun.

04-18-2012, 07:18 PM
If price is no object, the 5D mark III just came out. I have the older 5D mark II and it takes great video. They use the 5D Mark II all the time shooting the House TV show.

The advantages of using a DSLR is the video quality is up there or better than the expensive ($25,000) pro video cameras, the disadvantage is no auto focus while shooting and rolling shutter if you are moving the camera fast to follow something.

The advantage of getting a dedicated video camera is you can run-and-gun, that is the camera auto focuses while shooting allowing you to follow people around. We have both at the paper I work at, but I am always disappointed with the quality of the video cameras compared to my DSLR. But the video camera is easier to use and is less trouble.

I have been pretty pleased with the video off my iPhone 4S. I have a little tripod mount for it and have use it as a second camera.

Here is a video I shot with my 5D mark II and used my iPhone as the second camera.


Michael Rader
04-18-2012, 08:19 PM
Nice. Thanks guys.


Line cooked
04-18-2012, 09:57 PM
I am shooting and filming (more Shooting)with a Nikon D7000. No complaints...I actually love it, but it is an investment.

If you are super curious you could always rent from Adorama, Borrow Lenses, or Calumet to see what you really like or better yet need.

Marko Tsourkan
04-19-2012, 08:13 AM

Interesting propositions. Trying one before buying would definitely make sense.

Would buying 5D Mark II used be a wise choice? It could probable be gotten relatively inexpensively, now that 5D Mark III is out.


l r harner
04-19-2012, 08:35 AM
while im not a fan of the EVF that sony has gone to i think i ll be picking up a newer A57 so i will have video (i have a bunch of lens but nnon of them SSM)

have you looked into something liek a gopro or even one of the smaller sony NEX cams (i knwo that does not help you with your current DSLR and lens setup but jsut pitching it out there )

04-19-2012, 01:43 PM

Interesting propositions. Trying one before buying would definitely make sense.

Would buying 5D Mark II used be a wise choice? It could probable be gotten relatively inexpensively, now that 5D Mark III is out.


Hi Marko, your mailbox is full.
The 24-105L kit lens for the 5D Mark II works great for both close up and wide shots.