Are Video DSLRs dying out?

July 20th, 2015
Are Video DSLRs dying out?

The “Pro Video” report by Futuresource Consulting suggests that DSLRs used for video applications will be dying out soon.

According to their research, European shipments of DSLRs into professional video applications dropped by 41% in 2014. They predict that in 2019, DSLRs will account for only 4% of sales within the professional video market, down from 31% at the peak of the Video-DSLR hype.

I have to say that these developments are not too surprising to me, while the downward trend is probably a bit more extreme than I thought it would be.

2015-06-Pro-Video-1

Let’s look at a bit of history …

By sheer accident, the photo division within Canon introduced a video mode into the 35mm full-frame Canon 5D Mark II that was usable for professional video acquisition when used correctly and the right accessories. A whole ecosystem of blogs (like this one) and accessory manufacturers developed in the subsequent years, for the first time giving a very large creative audience the opportunity to create stunning cinematic images with a relatively inexpensive and very small camera package.

It took the competition years to catch up with Canon, while everybody and their mum invested in Canon DSLRs and their lenses. Then with the Panasonic AF100, the Sony F3, later the Canon C300 and others, the first more affordable S35mm cameras were introduced … however at a much higher price point than the Video DSLRs, but with more professional video features.

The present

In recent times, it seems that Canon decided to stop innovation in video features in DSLRs, while others like Blackmagic and particularly Sony are now capitalizing in Canon’s weakness in that sector, who have decided to focus all their pro video efforts into their more expensive (yet very successful) Cinema line.

That’s where we stand, professionals are moving to higher end cameras again, while DSLRs sell less and less because there is a lack of innovation from Canon, while Sony focus on mirrorless cameras like the A7 line of cameras, which come in at a similar price point as Canon DSLRs, but don’t technically fall in this category – which is why the Futuresource report might be not be a very accurate representation. It might say more about Canon’s DSLR sales to video shooters than for anyone else’s products.

What’s also interesting to see from this chart is that while the market for large sensor cameras has been growing still from 2013 to 2015, it will become stagnant in the coming years. This might be because of the market saturation with existing large sensor cameras that do their job well, there might be less motivation for camera owners to upgrade their gear.

via: Futuresource Consulting

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Dmitri Tsitelauri
Member14 days ago

I hope this is not true… I love my DSLRs :)

Suriel Capodacqua
Suriel Capodacqua
Guest14 days ago

Except Sony A7s

Nino Leitner
Nino Leitner
Guest14 days ago

Suriel … which is technically not a DSLR. Probably not part of their research as mentioned at the end of my article.

Suriel Capodacqua
Suriel Capodacqua
Guest14 days ago

I know , as a canon dslr – blackmagic shooter i must say that those sensor is astonishing

Jean-Denis GALVAN
Jean-Denis GALVAN
Member14 days ago

“there might be less motivation for camera owners to upgrade their gear.”

It’s very strange to consider the potentiality of the 5Dmk2 even today. I can shoot RAW near 1080p with ML and there’s no pro/semi-pro camera that enable that (out of the box, I mean) in the same price range. I’m definitly an “amateur” and if I had to buy some new hardware, I will dig into GH4 / A7S, but with regrets that I can’t have RAW.

To me, the real DSLR revolution was in the huge jump in IQ into this range’s price. At this time, outside ARRI and RED, (with only S35 sensors and not full frame) and in the semi-pro budget range, there were really nothing available.

In fact, I think that DSLR brought larger sensors to standards camera s, and it can be a real pain with the generalisation of this kind of image in small bad productions (like mines…)

Oscar M
Member13 days ago

Well with 15 stops of DR and much smaller filesize comming from the A7S I never use the 5D3 with ML for RAW.
To be honest it´s nice not to have to deal with the huge RAW files anymore.

cheers´

Denisas Pupkevicius
Member13 days ago

The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. I have been looking now for a while into other side of the fence, like sony a7s, but its not so easy to say good bye to 5D + Magic Lantern features, like raw video, silent full res pictures, 3x crop mode, advanced integrated intervalometer and many other things… Will be interesting to see how Canon 5D mark IV and Sony a7s II will look like.

Syed Mustafa Sabir
Syed Mustafa Sabir
Guest13 days ago

Super awesome thanks :)

Alexander Royce
Alexander Royce
Member13 days ago

I myself am putting my DSLR on the shelf as soon as my Blackmagic URSA Mini arrives. I’ll still use my DSLR for quick things I’m sure.

Ian Hunter
MemberNovember 23rd, 2015

I thought the complete opposite was happening. People become really hip to the versatility of shooting with an SLR vs a standard video cam. Why would it decline? I don’t think modular cinema cams are responsible.

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