Choosing the best camera for filming music videos is a key decision, because each camera offers a different combination of features so you need to find the video quality and extras which match your aspiration and budget.
Mirrorless Cameras for Music Videos
Sony and Panasonic have been the go-to video camera models for shooting music videos, and they have a strong mirrorless camera product line. But other brands are now building a strong reputation among the video production teams, so you’ve got some great options when sourcing the best mirrorless camera for your music video.
Best Camera for Filming Music Videos
Hear Arinze Clifford’s favourite cameras and see how the music videos look on screen.
WHATS THE BEST CAMERAS FOR MUSIC VIDEOS IN 2021? – Arinze Clifford
One of the best mirrorless cameras is the FujiFilm XT4, which is a hybrid camera offering both filming and photography options.
The XT4 can shoot in 4K up to 60 frames per second, and full HD/240p for up to 10x slow motion effect.
And if you want a slightly wider frame than normal, the FujiFilm XT4 also shoots in cinema 4k.
It shoots 10 bit video, rather than 8 bit video, so you can push the colours in post production more without breaking the image when you want to do heavy colour grading.
The XT4 has the fourth-generation X-Trans CMOS 4 sensor, X-Processor, and has a large capacity battery.
The FujiFilm XT3 is also a great camera but the XT4 is more powerful because it has a five-axis 6.5-stop compact in-body image stabilization (IBIS) system. Combining this with digital image stablisization (DIS) and image stablization (IS) Boost mode, there’s no need for a gimbal or other stabilization accessories.
When you’re looking for a music video camera, continuous shooting with a more creative, handheld approach to the shoot gives you greater scope for a dynamic range of active and engaging images. So the XT3 image stablization offers that portable freedom, aided by the camera’s ergonomic grip.
Its ETERNA Bleach Bypass Film simulation mode creates a high-contrast look with low saturation, thus saving hours of colour corection in post production.
And whether you’re filming or taking photos, the XT4 offers one of the fastest autofocus features in the mirrorless camera market.
The mechanical shutter is capable of up to 15 frames per second, so even fleeting moments are captured.
And the camera is built to last even in extreme weather conditions, including dust, moisture and temperatures down to 14DF, or -10DC.
Canon EOS R5
When the flagship full frame mirrorless Canon EOS R5 was launched to great acclaim, it introduced the option for shooting 8K RAW video footage.
It’s also a great hybrid, offering high image quality video recording, and doubling up for high image quality photographs with 45MP stills at up to 20fps. Even better, you can grab stills from the camera’s movie clips without any compromise in resolution.
Supporting full-sensor-width 8K recording internally at up to 30p, The Canon EOS R5 also offers full Dual Pixel CMOS AF performance in all of the 8K video modes.
Shooting in 8k video means you can get a very realistic image, cut down to 4K for an image with more detail and better dynamic range than a native 4K one, or crop a 4K frame from the full 8K image for more creative freedom during video editing.
“If you’re smart with your light and with your shooting angle, you could start with a wide 8K shot and then just grab a 4K section of the frame for a close-up headshot later. So one camera angle and one take will give you two cuts. For someone who’s working alone with a single camera, that’s a massive bonus.”
Clive Booth – fashion, beauty and portrait photographer and filmmaker
The Canon EOS R5 has 5-axis in-body Image Stabilization (IBIS), and delivers an industry-leading 8-stops of IS* when paired with certain lenses, so you can free yourself from the tripod without producing a shaky image.
Panasonic Lumix S5
A cinema camera for the budget conscious and slightly smaller than the Panasonic GH5, the Panasonic Lumix S5 can shoot 4k video in 10-bit, allowing you to do heavier colour grading in post production than with the 8-bit.
With a lightweight magnesium alloy full die-cast body design, the hybrid full-frame mirrorless Lumix S5 camera is compact and lightweight, yet offers cinema-quality video performance.
It’s got twin SD card slots, five axis in body image stabilization, and an attractive price point.
Sony Alpha A7SIII
The Sony A7SIII was the camera which introduced the flip screen to the Sony video camera range.
It’s a real benefit for anyone needing to film themselves, such as for a YouTube channel, but if you’re totally bootstrapping your music video you might need this feature too.
Offering UHD 4K 120p Video, internally recording 10-Bit 4:2:2 with no crop, the Sony Alpha A7SIII stands out from its competitors.
It can also offers great low light, with 12.1 MP back-illuminated Exmor R sensor, BIONZ XR image processor, and autofocus.
The full-frame mirrorless still and video camera makes a great hybrid.
When you’re looking for a camera for filming music videos, there’s a wide range of factors at play.
Arinze Clifford’s video shows a number of music video clips filmed on four different mirrorless cameras, giving you an insight on how they translate onto screen.
You can find out more about filming music videos and the equipment needed on Arinze’s YouTube channel.