Magic Lantern teaser; RAW/DNG silent video sequence from Canon 5D MKII/MKIII

ziggy53ziggy53 Super Moderators Posts: 23,899 moderator
edited April 30, 2013 in Video
The Magic Lantern folks have done it again. Some time ago the Magic Lantern firmware overlay software allowed some Canon cameras with video the ability to shoot HDR video, at half-frame-rate. This allowed more video dynamic range than any other consumer video system on the planet.

But for a long time Canon users had to watch as other manufacturers launched reasonably priced dSLRs with HDMI-recordable output, and some of those are RAW video sequences with much broader dynamic range.

Soon, Canon 5D MKII and 5D MKIII owners will have the option of using a new version of Magic Lantern which can record short bursts of 14-bit DNG sequences, with much more dynamic range and 4-times more color information per frame, and with no video compression. The output should be similar to a Blackmagic Design Cinema Camera in the same shooting circumstances.

No sound recording is possible. This is tapping a "debug" function of the Canon camera's firmware. These Canon cameras are not designed for recording RAW video.

Discrete frames. This is not a video file but separate and discrete image frames, which need to be individually processed, assembled and compressed to view as a video stream or video file.

Garbage in the frame. Right now, you have to both crop and scale the resulting sequence in order to match any video standard resolution and aspect ratio.

Very short sequence duration. Right now, the highest resolution sequences appear to be 10-14 fps and around 28 frames in duration (best case). A user has reported his Canon 5D MKIII was able to record to 720x1280@24fps and 150 frames (6.25 seconds).

Rolling shutter. A sample I saw with a frame from a panned shot shows rather extreme rolling shutter (IMO).

Moire. This will certainly affect video moire. No one knows the exact ramifications just yet.

Compile your own. Right now, this version of Magic Lantern doesn't exist. You would need to compile your own from source.

Can damage your camera. This stuff is just days old and no one knows the ramifications of actual use. Your camera is definitely at risk.

If the above didn't scare you away, here is a sample of the differences (watch it at highest resolution):

Moderator of the Cameras and Accessories forums


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    ziggy53ziggy53 Super Moderators Posts: 23,899 moderator
    edited April 30, 2013
    A test result video using a Canon 5D MKII with the new MagicLantern DNG mode. I see strong mosaic patterns at some spatial frequencies with the DNG sequences, but adding a Mosaic Engineering VAF5D2 filter gets the problem well under control.


    At Vimeo you can download an original 1920 x 1080 WMV file (same author as the YouTube video):
    Moderator of the Cameras and Accessories forums
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