Camera choice is a touchy, borderline political, topic in the world of multimedia production. For photographers, it’s the eternal “Nikon vs. Canon” debate. For cinematographers, it’s a little less black and white.
If your life even peripherally orbits the film and video world, you’ve probably heard or seen the opinions on either end of the tech spectrum:
Exhibit A: The “Stories Matter More Than the Camera” Angle
From this person, you’ll likely hear “you can shoot on anything, as long as you’ve got a good story!” They’ll point you to Tangerine, a feature-length narrative film shot exclusively on iPhone.
Exhibit B: The “If You’re Not Shooting ALEXA, You’re Fired” Angle
I won’t mince words: the Arri ALEXA is a top-tier camera, producing insane dynamic range, and whipping other camera’s butts when it comes to skin tones. What I WILL say is that no, you don’t need to shoot on it to create something beautiful.
That said, many directors won’t even hire you unless you drop that alliterative camera’s name.
The video above is basically a gross exaggeration of what cinematographers see when comparing cameras, blown out to the biggest visual disparity possible. If you’ve got a video nerd in your life, the iPhone footage and its flaws are as glaring as the ones they see between even higher end cameras.
That said, it’s a pretty cool look at how big of a differential there is in video quality as you step up from the low end to the high end of cameras.