Cinema Camera

DIY Cinema Camera Kit for Less than $250

Posted November 10, 2017
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Cinema cameras are expensive.

In many ways there isn't a ton of need for it as you can get cinema quality footage working with a smartphone and clever color editing, but if you want to work with a powerful dedicated cinema camera, like the Blackmagic, you are going to end up spending a couple thousand dollars. Between the camera itself, lenses, accessories and whatnot, these cameras can have a high price tag.

Don't have the money for a cinema camera? Here's a cool solution from Caleb Pike for YouTube channel DSLR Video Shooter:

As we reported previously, no matter what you want to achieve in film and video there is usually a creative solution to achieve what you're looking for. In the case of replicating the look of a cinema camera there are plenty of creative solutions including adjusting settings and doing some work in post, but if you want to get the same look right out of the camera this is an interesting DIY way to do so.

In the video, we see how to make a 'Frankenstein's Monster' of cinema cameras using a few key parts. First is the camera itself. In the video Pike uses the Canon EOS M, but you can use any similar camera as well. This camera is great in particular, as Pike points out, as you can load certain features onto it which will help you achieve the cinema look. 

Next, Pike takes us through adding a 35mm lens attachment and lens cage that will enhance the lens already on the camera -- think of this like a smartphone lens attachment, just on a much larger scale. Add in any other attachments, bells or whistles you may want on it and you have made yourself a DIY cinema camera!

While this is a usable solution for filmmakers and video producers who want to work with cinema cameras but don't have the budget for it, with videos on the web you can get away with not using a 'cinema kit' as long as the shooting is good and the quality is at least full HD. Take shooting on an iPhone for example. With most iPhones you can shoot natively in full 1080p HD (even 4K on some of the newer models) and the images looks just as stunning as anything you would get on a DSLR. Pair that raw footage up with subtle adjustments to color and exposure in the edit and you will have cinematic footage that people will think was produced on a high-end cinema camera.

So, whether it's a DIY cinema camera or just some tweaks to your smartphone's footage, there are ways to get cinematic footage, without breaking the bank.

Got any tips or tricks of your own? Let us know in the comments.


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