Sunday, February 20, 2011

Canon Hybrid is 'Game Changer' for AP Visuals

Kevin Roach,the Associated Press's VP for Broadcast News, tells Beet.TV that the hybrid Canon 5D Mark II (the first DSLR to enable 1080p video) is a "game changer" for visual journalism. .

The AP wisely committed resources to supplying both its print reporters and still photographers with these pricey tools (which run about $2500 each just for the body) -- and, here's the important part, the necessary training to ensure worthwhile results.

The video interview below includes samples of AP footage -- both raw and "produced." Note that stories often combine stills and video in the same piece, a testament to the enduring power of a single memorable frame.

Everyone loves the image quality, but pros concur that there are still enormous audio drawbacks for newsgatherers. Because there is no audio out (i.e. for headphones), you can't hear the interviews you are recording, to ensure their sound quality. Also, large video files require frequent changes of memory cards. And we've been hearing complaints about the challenge of focusing while in video mode.

We suspect all this will improve soon, and advise media outlets to follow AP's lead in acquainting qualified staffers with the tools and knowledge that will empower them to augment their visual storytelling prowess. It's a prudent investment.

No comments: