Log2_Over2

Canon C300 MKII Review: Part 2

INTRODUCTION

Canon introduced some pretty amazing specs into their new camera. With the ability to record HD, 2K, UHD, and 4K internally up to RGB444 12-bit, you can be sure the camera will be up to any challenge. But at the core, what really matters is not only the resolution, but how the camera interprets the image information. What are the various gamma settings available? How does the camera handle over and under exposure?  What is the camera’s dynamic range? Is there noise, and if so, at what ISOs? I hope to answer all of these questions in this post.

You can download all the reference video files in full quality here. (As long as storage allows…!)

Gamma settings

The Canon C300 MK II comes packed with a wide variety of gamma choices. With the release of the camera, Canon has introduced a new Cine Gamma, called Canon Log 2. This gamma profile flattens the image much more than before, likening this new profile to Arri’s Log-C or Sony’s S-Log. With this gamma, you have various color space options as well. For these tests, I chose Cinema Gamut when in Log2. The camera also ships with some old favorites. Here is a list of all available options:

  • Canon Log 2: Cinema Gamut
  • Canon Log 2: BT.2020
  • Canon Log 2: DCI-P3
  • Canon Log 2: BT.709
  • Canon Log
  • Wide DR
  • EOS Standard
  • Normal 1 (Standard)
  • Normal 2 (x4.0)
  • Normal 3 (BT.709)
  • Normal 4 (x5.0).

Throughout this review, I will be looking at the presets Log 2 and Log. These are the two gamma settings that need critiquing, as they are the ones that will not only be used the most, but also the ones we will debate over when, where, and how to use them. With that said, I will discuss the Rec 709 profile in different situations for a point of comparison. When setting up these tests, I used my Sekonic L-758Cine light meter set to ISO 800, which is Canon’s rating for the camera. I felt it was important for me to know what the various gamma settings look like when exposing them to a meter reading, thus telling me how much I should over or under expose my image for any given setting. As you will see below, each gamma represents values differently.

In the first setup, I shot outside on a clear day, where there was both bright sunlight and even shade within the shot. In the shade, the meter read an F11 at ISO 800. This is where I exposed the camera. The bright sun on the background buildings read between an F45 and F64, or 4 – 5 stops overexposed. Take a look at how differently each gamma setting interprets the scene.

In Canon Log 2, we have a smooth gradient transition from our shadows to our highlights. Midtones are not dramatically under exposed, yet the camera easily holds an exposure, even in the brightest lit portions of the frame. This setting will require the most amount of color correction though, so be aware.

Log2-ISO-800-EXT

Log 2 Gamma at ISO 800

In Canon Log, there is increased saturation and contrast in comparison to Log 2. Midtones are brought down, relative to the meter, and we start to lose some information in the highlights.

Log-ISO-800 EXT

Log Gamma at ISO 800

In Rec 709, the scene is normalized in terms of exposure, saturation, and contrast, so this would be an acceptable gamma setting when color correction is not an option. This will produce good looking images ready for edit right out the camera, but there is a significant loss in highlight retention.

709-ISO-800-EXT

Rec 709 Gamma at ISO 800

Here is a video of the Log 2, Log, and Rec709 gamma settings.

This daytime exterior scene give us a good sense of what is happening with our midtones and highlights. But what about the shadows? Let’s take a look at a night interior scene. Many thanks to my fiancé, Sarah, for sitting in giving me something nice to look at while putting all this together! You can see that the midtones, while a little low, do not appear underexposed. The shadow and highlight detail retain strong. The dark back wall is 4 stops underexposed and the stove light is 4 stops overexposed. At ISO 800, there is little noise in the image.

 

log2-800

Log 2 Gamma at ISO 800

In Log, the midtones appear slightly underexposed in comparison, which pushes the shadows farther into darkness. The extreme highlights start to push the limit as well. Yet, this gamma setting can hold up to color correction well, especially now that we are able to record in either 10 or 12 bit in HD and 2K and 10 bit in 4K. The image appears to have even less noise than Log 2 at ISO 800.

log-800

Log Gamma at ISO 800

In these examples, we’ve looked at various gamma settings when exposed properly, and how they render a scene when done so. Let’s now look at Canon Log 2 and Canon Log when under and over exposed.

Over & Under Exposure Tests

While the previous test is necessary when judging gamma settings under ideal situations, the real test comes when we look at underexposing and overexposing an image. This is useful both when trying to determine the effective latitude, as well as knowing whether you feel comfortable pushing the limits of your shot. Let’s first look at the night interior scene once again, but with a map of exposure readings.

Log2_800-Range

Log 2 Gamma – Meter Readings

Now let’s take a look at Canon Log 2 5 stops underexposed to 5 stops overexposed. Following are waveform readings of each stop to see how the gamma setting holds information.

 

Log2_Under5

Log2 Gamma – 5 Stops Under

Log2_Under4

Log2 Gamma – 4 Stops Under

Log2_Under3

Log2 Gamma – 3 Stops Under

Log2_Under2

Log2 Gamma – 2 Stops Under

Log2_Under1

Log2 Gamma – 1 Stop Under

Log2_0

Log2 Gamma: At Exposure

Log2_Over1

Log2 Gamma + 1 Stop Over

Log2_Over2

Log2 Gamma + 2 Stops Over

Log2_Over3

Log2 Gamma + 3 Stops Over

Log2_Over4

Log2 Gamma + 4 Stops Over

Log2_Over5

Log2 Gamma + 5 Stops Over

And the same 5 stops under and over at Canon Log.

Log_Under5

Log Gamma – 5 Stops Under

Log_Under4

Log Gamma – 4 Stops Under

Log_Under3

Log Gamma – 3 Stops Under

Log_Under2

Log Gamma – 2 Stops Under

Log_Under1

Log Gamma – 1 Stop Under

Log_0

Log Gamma: At Exposure

Log_Over1

Log Gamma + 1 Stop Over

Log_Over2

Log Gamma + 2 Stops Over

Log_Over3

Log Gamma + 3 Stops Over

Log_Over4

Log Gamma + 4 Stops Over

Log_Over5

Log Gamma + 5 Stops Over

 

Dynamic Range

Now that we’ve seen 5 stops underexposed and 5 stops underexposed, WHAT IS THE DYNAMIC RANGE OF THE CANON C300 MK II??

Canon released the camera with specifications stating 15 stops of dynamic range. This was a HUGE announcement, but of course people were skeptical. Since the release of the camera, a few people have done their own tests to determine if this number was accurate.

The dynamic range of a camera tells you how many stops of light you have from black to white. This helps you determine how far over or under exposed you are willing to let a window blow out, or knowing whether you want a 3:1 or 5:1 contrast ratio on your subject.

I feel using a chip chart for testing dynamic range is a slippery slope. Most high quality charts are glossy, so as to produce as close to true black as possible. But this can also lead to reflective points on the chart that do not represent the proper luminance value. If you can create a perfect testing environment, then these work great. Also, many charts still do not represent a range wide enough for testing cameras. The chart I have only gives  me a 12-stop gradation. So when you want to test how many stops over and under middle gray you can go before you hit pure black or pure white, why not do just that?

I set up a gray card and lit it evenly with a soft light source. I set the camera to Canon Log 2 at Cinema Gamut color space, at an ISO 800, the base setting of the camera. Then I simply over and under exposed the camera one stop at a time until I flat-lined at either 0% or 100% on the IRE scale. There will probably be some minor fluctuations in values, depending on the lens quality and f-stop characteristics, but these are factors that will exist in the real world, so I am fine having them part of my test. Because remember, the real reason for testing all of this is to give you a more accurate understanding of the equipment you are working with.

https://www.usa.canon.com/CUSA/assets/app/pdf/camera/brochures/WhitePaper-imageperformanceenhancements-eosc300markii.pdf

https://www.usa.canon.com/CUSA/assets/app/pdf/camera/brochures/WhitePaper-imageperformanceenhancements-eosc300markii.pdf

In the image above, Canon states that at ISO 800, the base setting, the camera should give you 6.3 stops over middle gray and 8.7 stops under (or 7.7 below when you account for middle gray as its own exposure). When I did my test, I also found that the first fully clean exposure with no clipping was in fact 6.3 stops over. When underexposing, I found that 7.7 stops under middle gray was already bleeding with the previous exposure value, leaving me with 7 stops under middle gray as my bottom out point. This leaves us around 14-14.3 stops of dynamic range.

 

DR01 DR02

 

ISO Noise

Noise is always a factor worth examining in tests like this. While the C300 MK II gives you the ability to shoot high ISOs, the image may not always look that good. When you have to push the limit on a shoot, just how far are you willing to go?

These videos show an incremental step of the ISO range from 160-25,600 at various gamma settings. This was shot with the port cap on the camera, so we see what’s happening on the naked sensor.

It’s interesting how with Log 2, you cannot really go above ISO 800 without starting to see some real noise, but in Canon Log or Rec709, you can push it safely up to ISO 6400! This is an important point to note. Next, we look at our daylight exterior setting at Log 2 at various ISOs. How noticeable is the noise when bright and sunny?

After seeing the ideal limits experienced in pure black, it was nice to place that information into a bright, contrasty scene. While it can be hard to see the noise with so much information in the frame, looking at the woven deck chair reveals noise beginning to develop at the exact points we saw from the black test. Also, notice the significant green shift when we move above ISO 20,000. Lastly, we look at our night interior and do the same thing. How does the noise react in the shadow areas?

Another interesting test is looking at how the sensor interprets its Gain/ISO, and is it better to shoot a higher ISO in camera, or push the image later in post? In this example, I took one image shot in-camera at ISO 6400 and another shot from the over/under test at ISO 800, 3 stops underexposed. I then adjusted the exposure in post to match to the native ISO 6400 shot.

4K_Log2_6400

Log 2 Gamma at ISO 6400

4K_Log2_6400Match

Log 2 Gamma at ISO 800 pushed to 6400

4K_Log_6400

Log Gamma at ISO 6400

4K_Log_6400Match

Log Gamma at ISO 800 pushed to 6400

It is quite apparent the sensor does a much better job suppressing noise at higher ISOs than when pushing the image in post. Just like we saw high the extremely high ISOs, there is a substantial green shift in the noise when you push the image. So if anything, when shooting in extreme low-light, its probably better to up the ISO and overexpose slightly, then hope to push it in post.

Conclusion

After looking at the various Gamma settings, over and under tests, and ISO noise, here are my final thoughts on settings.

Canon Log 2 is an impressive gamma curve for giving you the most out of your image. With an effective 14 stops of dynamic range, you can tackle contrasty scenes with a gentle smoothness. It gives you plenty of information across the exposure range, but requires a lot of color grading to get a pleasing final image. With the introduction of noise after ISO 800, I will be choosing this gamma curve when I have solid control over my lighting and can moderate my aperture with NDs to always stay at an ISO 800. This makes using Log 2 tricky in most documentary settings, but ideal for narrative work.

I am still impressed with Canon Log, in that it gives you a nice range of exposure without requiring as much work in color correction. Being clean up to ISO 6400 is a huge factor as well. I think this will remain my go-to gamma setting in documentary settings, while utilizing Log 2 in special situations when the going gets tough.

Doing these tests has deepened my understanding of how the camera sees and interprets the world, thus allowing me to better capture images. Knowing where the camera excels and where it has limitations keeps my mind free to think more about the creative and less about the technical. I urge you to do your own tests and get comfortable with your camera. There are no right or wrong tests to perform, only the ones that help you get the results you are looking for.

35 Comments

  • Aaron / October 28, 2015 at 5:16 am

    Great articles man! Thank you for sharing!

    Reply
  • Barry Goyette / October 31, 2015 at 6:27 pm

    Very meaningful set of tests. Thanks.

    One curiosity. In many of the early user videos that hit the web, it appeared that the users were having trouble grading the footage. (and you speak here about about clog requiring significant color correction.) Awhile back one of the rental houses posted a few .mxf files from the camera, shot in Clog2 and I was shocked at how good the color looked and how easy they were to grade. I’m wondering how much shooting with canon’s cinema gamut (which appears to have non standard primaries to me) has to do with any difficulty. Have you tested the Rec.709 matrix with the clog2 yet. Curious to see if that is the difference between what I saw with those mxf’s and what others (and you may be) experiencing.

    I think I’m also curious to see how in-camera noise reduction applies to clog2. The camera is very clean at most ISO’s except in the bottom 20% of the dynamic range, and in geoff boyle’s tests we could see that the C300 was holding a fair amount more detail than the F55 in the shadows, albeit with slightly higher noise. Some of the earliest blogger vids (Phil Bloom and Dan Chung’s showed very little noise in their night time stuff, all shot in Clog2. Bloom mentioned little penalty to increasing noise reduction up to level 8.) Anyway…curious if you’ve experimented with it.

    Again…a nice…well written, informative review. Thank you.

    Reply
    • mattporwoll / November 8, 2015 at 9:36 pm

      Hi Barry, thanks for your comment. While Log2 requires more time in the color correct (and yes, even more time when using Cinema Gamut than 709), I still have no problem with that workflow when it is required. Like I said in my post, I will most likely be using CLog for my documentary work and CLog2 for narrative and commercial work, when the time can be put into the CC and there is a post house involved. The decision to stay in Cinema Gamut color space will give me a lot more flexibility and a wider range to work with than 709, so I am fine with the time required to correct.

      As for your comment about in-camera noise reduction, I have not looked into this option yet, but I will most certainly take a look. Again, it all depends on the project, but it’ll be interesting to see the results.

      Thanks!

      Reply
  • Sanjay Agrawal / November 5, 2015 at 10:21 am

    It is a wealth of information Matt. Thanks a ton indeed.
    However I am keen to find out the difference between :
    Canon Log 2: Cinema Gamut
    Canon Log 2: BT.2020 &
    Canon Log 2: DCI-P3

    Reply
    • mattporwoll / November 8, 2015 at 10:28 pm

      A color gamut is the range of colors able to be recorded by the camera. Cinema Gamut, BT.2020, DCI-P3, & BT.709 each have a different footprint in which they process the color spectrumm perceivable to the human eye, as well as relate to the viewing medium that supports it.

      Cinema Gamut: widest color space offered. While it gives you a great range of colors recorded to camera, you may want to have a conversation with your post-production team before making the choice to use it full-time.
      BT.2020: Color space developed for 4K and 8K resolutions. BT.2020 supports more color information than it’s predecessor BT.709, and can be viewed using many 4K TVs.
      DCI-P3: Color space used in certain digital projectors.

      So as you can see, your decision to use one color space over another depends on a variety of things, including final delivery medium and post-prodcution workflow.

      Reply
  • Craig Feldman / January 5, 2016 at 6:58 pm

    Hey, Great reviews. Just wondering if you have tried the C300 mk1 as a B camera to the C300 mk2. I know they are different sensors etc but wondering if they will match well. It would be great to get a mk2 and still work my c300 as the second camera.

    Reply
    • Eric Macey / January 10, 2016 at 7:23 pm

      In response Craig: I recently paired the MKI and MKII together on a series and found that it was difficult to match the cameras. After exhaustive, and not entirely fruitful, conversations with Canon techs it was concluded that the only way to get close to matching the two cameras is to roll both in CLog-1. Even the WDR setting varied widely in tone and saturation upon testing. Abel Cine has offered, at a hefty price, to build matching profiles (which could be a nice option if your budget allows). If you do plan on pairing the cameras I and Canon recommend not straying from the CLog-1 CP.

      Reply
      • mattporwoll / January 12, 2016 at 4:01 am

        Agreed. The best (and really only) way to closely match the images in-camera is to shoot in CLog 1. The MK II is still a richer image with better color renditions and a sharper image, but you can get pretty close in CLog 1. Just be careful in how you view the image in camera, as the View Assist function on the MK I (pretty contrasty) and the 709 LUT on the MK II (more pleasing) render the images differently. If possible, try to use an external monitor that allows for LUTs, so you are looking at the two images with the same correction overlay.

        Reply
  • Carl Davis / January 5, 2016 at 7:19 pm

    Thanks Matt– very helpful!

    Reply
  • Dale / January 28, 2016 at 10:35 am

    May I just say what a comfort to uncover someone that genuinely knows what they’re talking about over
    the internet. You actually understand how to bring an issue to
    light and make it important. More people really need to check
    this out and understand this side of your story.
    I can’t believe you are not more popular given that you surely possess the
    gift.

    Reply
  • Eric / February 3, 2016 at 9:51 am

    Hi Matt , Looking at your scopes it seems that 18% grey sits at around 35-to 37% for C-Log2 and 32% for C-Log1. Do you know of any white paper published by Canon that gives out the right readings for black mid-grey and white for C-Log2, I could not find anything on this subject.
    Thanks for sharing those thoughts!

    Reply
    • Matt / February 4, 2016 at 7:02 am

      I’ve also been wondering and looking for information about this.

      Reply
    • mattporwoll / February 4, 2016 at 2:39 pm

      Hi Eric, Canon did publish a white paper on the subject, which can be downloaded here. Canon actually recommends the 18% grey reference at 39.2 IRE. Take a look at the white paper for more info.

      Reply
  • Benjamin Hesselholdt / February 4, 2016 at 12:31 pm

    I just bought a c300 markii both for documentary work and commercial.
    I have sort of a stupid question. Have is the best workflow to get files out of camera.

    Right now I have had success with Davinci 12.2.

    Whats your workflow?

    Reply
    • mattporwoll / February 4, 2016 at 3:00 pm

      Hi Benjamin, congrats on the purchase. I think you’re going to love the camera. I think everyone’s workflow with this camera will be different, depending on your post needs. Currently, I hand over the raw MXF files to be edited natively in Adobe Premiere. If I’m shooting in 4K/UHD, I will also hand over the proxy files recorded in-camera. If the project is short, or when working with the proxy files en mass, then editing natively hasn’t been an issue. Avid Media Composer 8 will also support the files natively. If I do need to transcode the files, for either a more friendly codec or for applying a look, I will process the files through DaVinci Resolve. So, it looks like you’re taking a solid approach already!

      Reply
      • Benjamin Hesselholdt / February 4, 2016 at 4:52 pm

        Thank you very much for reply!. I will for now transcode in resolve. I am begin to enjoy working with the camera – the pictures coming off the camera has very very nice colors and sharpness.

        Reply
  • Benjamin Hesselholdt / February 4, 2016 at 12:34 pm

    And of course. Thank you for the amazing test. It really helps to get an look into the different log modes!

    Kind regards,
    Benjamin

    Reply
  • Tom / February 8, 2016 at 1:36 pm

    Hi Matt-thanks for your posts! Have you found that properly exposed caucasian skin tones tend to fall between 47 and 50 IRE in Log2? Also, has anyone had a hard time finding those Canon white papers? The links all seem dead, even on the Canon website.

    Reply
  • Mei Williams / May 1, 2016 at 5:24 pm

    Great blog.

    Reply
  • Hristo Lazarov / May 4, 2016 at 10:58 pm

    I also bought Canon C300 MII. Thank you, very useful information!

    Reply
  • Matt Williams / June 30, 2016 at 11:38 am

    Hi, after shooting with the C300 MkII a lot, I also find the original C Log the best for usual shooting (saving C Log2 for particularly contrasty lighting situations). Do you shoot C Log in BT.709 or do you use a different colour space? I’m just wondering if it’s worth setting up a C Log profile with BT.2020 for a wider colour space? Part of my problem is I still don’t really understand what the different colour spaces mean, but I would assume a wider colour space is better?

    Reply
    • mattporwoll / July 27, 2016 at 2:22 pm

      Hi Matt,
      Nowadays, Rec709 as a baseline color space is becoming less and less used. Rec709 is great if there will be no color correct, or a fast edit turnaround. For anything longer or with a budget, I would choose to go BT.2020 or CinemaGamut. It will take more time to finesse, but the camera will be able to hold so much more color information. My suggestion to you is test! Try out Log in 709 vs 2020 vs CinemaGamut. And then do the same for Log2. Coming out of that test, you will have a better idea of which setup and workflow works for you.

      Reply
  • nikhil arolkar / July 24, 2016 at 2:12 pm

    hi matt,
    im wondering about the difference between 10 bit 4k raw or 2k 12bit 444. in terms of final color rendition what would you prefer?

    Reply
    • mattporwoll / July 27, 2016 at 2:32 pm

      Hi,
      I haven’t done any shooting in 4K raw on the MKII, but I think the choice should come down to resolution requirements vs color rendition. Some projects require 4K as an acquisition format, while others would suffer in data management shooting 4K. There have been many debates about the “sweet spot” of the MKII recently, and some people feel that for going 2K/HD in 12bit 444 will give you as pleasing of an image as 4K, while also giving you maximum color rendition to work with in post. I even made this decision for my next project that we chose to shoot in HD 12bit 444 over UHD. Of course, there are many factors in the decision-making process, so I would recommend doing tests for your specific needs and see which setup works best for you.

      Reply
  • Keith / July 24, 2016 at 6:05 pm

    I really appreciate your posting such a thoughtful and technically detailed review on the C-300 MII. Though I choose RED and occasionally Alexa for commercial work, I still shoot most doc style work with my owned C-300 MI and lately have begun renting the C-300 Mark II and FS7 to evaluate which is my preference to replace the aging C-300 MI.
    After a couple shoots, I have to say like the FS7, especially way the S-Log 3 responds to Arri’s Log-C to REC709 LUT in Resolve. That said, there are several reasons I’m leaning toward buying the C-300 MII, including the recent $4K price drop, tracking DPAF and the option of 4.4.4 12bit 2K.
    I have a job next week that I plan to shoot with a rented C-300 MII in Log and won’t have much time to do a lot of testing C- Log 2 in Resolve. I’m very interested if you have some current thoughts (July 2016) to add on choosing Log 2/Cinema gamma vs Log 1 for doc work and what LUT(s) you prefer to delog C-Log 2 footage.

    Reply
    • mattporwoll / July 27, 2016 at 2:46 pm

      Hi,
      Thanks for checking out the blog. I’m glad its been helpful! I don’t have much more to add about shooting docs with the MKII, other than its been great. I have been able to see a significant difference in sharpness and color detail from the MKI, as have my clients, which is even better! As far as the LUT conversation, I would be careful to make a buying decision based off of your preferred LUT. All of the footage can be altered five ways from Sunday, but what matters is the baseline information. My workflow has been to use to one of the internal LUTs of the camera (preferably BT.2020 for its reduced contrast) and bake it into a proxy record. This gets downloaded with the rest of the footage so post has a basic pleasing image to use for edit reviews. Beyond that, I would rather work through the color when I know what I have, rather than use a LUT as a starting point and then re-working a lot of the shots. That’s my workflow, but I certainly know people who use LUTs religiously. It all comes down to the types of projects you work on and how involved you will be with the look of the image to the end. I hope that helps!

      Reply
      • Keith / July 29, 2016 at 4:24 pm

        Thanks for the reply Matt. Just to clarify my previous post concerning standard Canon color workflow similar to what higher end camera manufacturers provide. My questions regarding reliable de-log LUTs (basically RAW or Log gammas to 709 for HD, 2020 for 4K, etc.) had more to do with the camera’s LED/VF displays and monitor out to external monitors than use as a starting point for final grading in post, although that is certainly a consideration if you shoot projects for clients that will be grading at other post facilities. Having an accurate, standardized de-log LUT for a specific camera LOG profile is a very useful reference for everyone involved when there’s no DIT is on set and you don’t know who’s color correcting. ARRI and RED have provided very good in-camera LUTs that directly translate as basic de-log LUTs in virtually all pro editing/grading software. I see no standard C-300 MII LUTs pre-installed in Davince Resolve, Premiere Pro CC, Speedgrade, etc. That said, many Sony camera owners regularly use Arri’s Log-C luts to de-log S-Log3 as Sony’s provided LUTs are not as good. I created a modified C-300 MI Cinema profile and C-Log to BT709 LUT as Canon’s offerings for that camera left much to be desired.
        Example: If you exposed Cinema Profile on the original C-300 based on Canon’s white paper on the subject, your footage was under exposed. This was a common complaint with the C-300 & C-500. Fact: Much of the C-500 footage shot on the movie ‘Need for Speed’ was mistakenly under exposed due to Canon’s recommendations and required time consuming noise reduction in post.

        Personally, I don’t want to attempt critical focus or subjective exposure when viewing linear LOG gammas on a camera LCD/VF. A viewing LUT should provide enough contrast and color to see a fair representation that compliments more precise exposure and focus tools. If at all practical I’ll use an external monitor when lighting scenes rather than rely on the camera’s 4″ LCD display. I own a Small HD DP7 Pro LED field monitor that comes in very handy for this purpose when shooting on location without a “video village”. The DP7 can display 3D LUTs as well so I installed Canon”s C-300 MII ver. 1 LUTs to compare with the in-camera output LUTs.

        Prior to this week I had only used the C-300 MII for a couple of studio green screen projects that I shot in default BT709 profile. Over the past couple of days I shot the Mark II on a political project that included carefully lit interviews, then run & gun footage using both controlled and available light that would involve some very high con situations. This was a rental camera so I only had a short time for research & prep so wanted the most “latitude” available to correct in post. I decided to go with C-Log2/cinema gamma, production camera, 2K 4.4.4 12bit, 0 sharpness and +3 noise reduction. I activated LUT for LCD/VF + monitor and set it to BT709. The LCD then looked quite bright and a bit too well saturated (much like Canon’s Standard Color picture profiles). My DP7 monitor connected via camera SDI out looked more subtle but generally the same color balance. I switched to the same Canon C-Log2/cinema gamma to 709 LUT installed on the monitor and it looked the same as the LUT output from the camera.

        Using the Canon’s C-Log2/Cinema Gamma exposure recommendations, the camera’s waveform and the monitor displays I shot 3 point lit interviews on a black backdrop the 1st day. When I checked footage in Resolve on our workstation that night using the same Canon LUT; it was all under exposed by about a stop. No worries as it is easily correctable 4.4.4 12bit but may need some noise reduction. The next day was run & gun so I exposed to eye + a 1/2-2/3 stop per the on board LCD while keep a close eye on the waveform to avoid highlights over 80 ire when possible. Using the the same Canon LUT, all this footage looks a bit hot but the mid ranges seem to be in a better zone. The same C-Log2/cinema gamma to 709 LUT is now too strong as a starting point. Oh course. this will grade from scratch fine and definitely won’t need any noise reduction.

        My early conclusion is that this camera likely requires a fair amount of getting used to and adjustment to have the same workflow confidence as I now have in my C-300 MI and comes built into Arri, RED and BMD camera color science workflows . I spent a great deal of time dialing in the C-300 to consistently create images I wanted. Any advice that can help avoid that painful path with the Mark II will be greatly appreciated.

        Reply
        • mattporwoll / July 30, 2016 at 2:04 am

          My best response would be to check out AbelCine’s article on Log3:

          “From a post and grading perspective, existing 1D “de-logging” LUTs (and some 3D LUTs, provided the color spaces make sense) for Canon Log 1 should generally work well with footage shot with Canon Log 3 until purpose-built LUTs for the new curve become available. In the meantime, a little bit of pre-LUT grading may be necessary to maximize the benefit of the additional highlight detail.”

          You can read the full article here: http://blog.abelcine.com/2016/07/28/canon-log-3-is-it-the-goldilog/

          Reply
  • Matt Porwoll | Cinematography » Canon C300 MKII: First Look at the new Canon Log 3 Gamma / July 28, 2016 at 1:41 pm

    […] been nine months to the day since I posted my initial reviews of the Canon C300 MKII: Part I and Part II. I’ve gotten so much great feedback from people as they started playing around with the […]

    Reply
  • Seth Lowe / August 12, 2016 at 9:40 pm

    Hey Matt, this is the best review yet I have read on this camera.. thanks! I am shooting a doc with this camera in December (renting the camera) and wondered if you could recommend a good color space? I have used the Original C300, but wont have a ton of time before shooting to test the color spaces out. Maybe I missed it, but I didn’t see a dynamic range test for the original Canon Log? I am thinking C Log with the Cinema gamut would be my best choice? We will have some time to do color, but but not a huge budget for a pro colorist. Thanks in advance for any tips!

    Reply
    • mattporwoll / August 12, 2016 at 10:19 pm

      Hi Seth,
      Thanks so much for checking out my post! I’m glad its been helpful. In my initial test of the C300 MKII, I didn’t focus on Canon Log only because most people have already had experience with it, like yourself. I wanted to look at the advancements with Canon Log 2, and in my new post, Log 3. With that said, I did do a dynamic range test of Canon Log in my latest post. Here, I found the DR to come in around 10.3 stops with the Cinema Gamut color space. Depending on your level of comfort with color correcting, or your budget to use a colorist, Cinema Gamut will give you the most room to play. BT.2020 will give you a wider range than BT.709, but less than Cinema Gamut. BT.709 will give you more or less what you’re used to working with on the C300 MKI. My recommendation for color space all depends on your project. Keep in mind that shooting Canon Log in Cinema Gamut requires you to “create” this look as a Custom Picture profile and will not allow the use of the camera’s internal viewing LUTs. If you are looking to output a signal either to an EVF or external monitor, you will either have to create a LUT and load into your monitor, or view uncorrected. My recommendation would be to use a camera with the new firmware and shoot Canon Log 3 / Cinema Gamut, where you will have a wider DR than Canon Log and have the ability to use internal viewing LUTs that you can also bake into a proxy record on an SD card. You can then hand this off to the colorist as a reference point for how you were exposing your image. All of my findings with the new Log 3 can be found in my latest post. I hope that helps and best of luck on the doc!

      Reply
  • Matt Porwoll | Cinematography » Canon C300 MKII Review: Part 1 / April 20, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    […] the next post, Canon C300 MK II Review: Part 2, I will take a look at some more of the more intensive parts of the […]

    Reply
  • Edgardo M Jimenez / June 6, 2017 at 10:57 pm

    Matt:

    I have an unrelated question, but I need some help here. Just used for the first time my C-300 Mark II this weekend filming a short film. I noticed, that contrary to the 5D Mark III, the C-300 had some trouble when capturing people on movement (running, walking). I can see something like a double layer on the person. Is there anything I was doing wrong with my camera settings? I was shooting at 800 ISO, F3.5, 23.94 FPS with a Canon 20mm and 50mm.

    Please help me on this with some advice.

    Thank you.

    Reply
    • mattporwoll / June 7, 2017 at 2:36 am

      I’m not entirely sure of the issue, but the first thing that comes to mind is what shutter were you shooting at? Are you able to show a screen grab?

      Reply

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