8 Best Raw Video Cameras for 2023 – Reviews and Buying Guides

When it comes to capturing high-quality videos, using a raw video camera is essential. Raw video cameras are designed to shoot uncompressed and unprocessed footage, allowing for more control over post-processing editing. But with so many options out there, finding the best raw video camera can be a daunting task. In this article, we have compiled a list of the top 8 best raw video cameras based on their features, image quality, and user reviews. Whether you’re a professional videographer, filmmaker, or just looking to up your video game, this buying guide will help you make an informed decision and find the best raw video camera for your needs.

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Last update on 2024-02-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Raw Video Cameras: A Beginner’s Overview

Raw video cameras are specialized cameras that can capture high-quality footage in raw video format. These cameras are designed to capture video footage with minimal compression and maximum information, which makes them ideal for professional filmmakers, videographers, and other creative professionals who require the highest possible quality when working with video. Raw video cameras can capture footage in resolutions ranging from HD to 4K and beyond, and they can be used for a variety of applications, including documentaries, feature films, commercials, and more.

There are many different types of raw video cameras available on the market, each with its own set of features and capabilities. Some of the most popular brands of raw video cameras include RED, Sony, Canon, and Blackmagic Design. These cameras typically come with a range of interchangeable lenses, high-quality sensors, and advanced image processing capabilities that make them ideal for capturing stunning footage in a wide range of shooting environments. Whether you’re a professional filmmaker, videographer, or hobbyist, a raw video camera can be an excellent investment that will help you take your video production to the next level.

8 Best Raw Video Cameras on the Market

RANK 1
Rawiemy Camcorders Video Camera 4K 48MP Video Recorder Camera with IR Night...
  • 🎥【4K Video camera camcorder】Rawiemy video camera 4K camcorders supports shooting HD 4K video (3840*2160P & 60FPS) and 48 Megapixelimages, It equipped...
  • 🎥【Multifunction 4K Video Camera】This 4K video camera for youtube supports loop /time-lapse /motion detection recording /self-timer /continuous shooting...
  • 🎥【IR Night Vision & PC Camera】This IR night vision camera is equipped with IR LED light, You can shoot black/white images or videos in low light...
  • 🎥【Built-in Microphone】This 4K video cameras built-in microphone can pick up voice(Please playback video on computer to show best sound quality). This...
  • 🎥【32GB SD Card】This kids video camera comes with 2 high capacity 1500mAh batteries and 32GB SD card. Full-charged battery can be sustainably used for...
RANK 3
Sony Alpha a6400 Mirrorless Camera: Compact APS-C Interchangeable Lens Digital...
  • Next Gen speed: experience the world's fastest 0. 02 sec AF with real-time AF and object tracking / Enhanced subject capture: wide 425 Phase/ 425 contrast...
  • Fast & accurate: up to 11Fps continuous shooting at 24. 2MP raw with crisp, clear natural colors
  • Multiple movie functions: make time lapse movies or slow/quick motion videos without post processing
  • Tiltable LCD screen: customizable for vlogging, still photography or recording a professional film
  • In the box: rechargeable battery (NP-FW50) AC adaptor (ac-uud12), shoulder strap, body cap, accessory shoe cap, eyepiece cup, micro USB cable
RANK 4
Loupedeck+ The Photo and Video Editing Console for Lightroom Classic, Premiere...
  • NATIVE SUPPORT: Adobe Lightroom Classic, Capture One Pro for MacOS, Photoshop with Camera Raw, Premiere Pro, After Effects, Audition, Final Cut Pro,...
  • PRO AND BEGINNER, achieving the perfect edit becomes second nature with Loupedeck+'s intuitive buttons, dials and color wheels.
  • ERGONOMICS: Effortlessly edit thousands of photos and video clips while keeping both hands on deck and eyes on your craft. Seamlessly command multiple editing...
  • SETUP: Quick and Easy. Begin editing immediately with our factory default profiles for supported creative software. Explore the ever-growing Loupedeck...
  • CUSTOMIZATION: Experience even more control with up to 4 layers of fully programmable buttons and dials for each editing application. Take advantage of Custom...
SaleRANK 5
Panasonic LUMIX S5IIX Mirrorless Camera, 24.2MP Full Frame Phase Hybrid AF,...
  • Key Upgrades to a Compact Hybrid Powerhouse: Phase Hybrid Autofocus, Active I.S., and Unlimited Video and Streaming, with 24.2-MP 35mm Full-Frame CMOS Sensor...
  • Fast, Accurate Phase Hybrid Autofocus: Advanced subject detection and metering technologies capture the target subject in focus even in adverse lighting...
  • Powerful Image Stabilization: With the S5II and S5IIX LUMIX developed Active I.S., which supports walking shots, to further enhance image stabilization in video...
  • Expressive Video Functionality: 14+ stop V-Log/V-Gamut capture delivers a high dynamic range and broad colors; in-camera photo and video color grading; 5.8K...
  • Unlimited Video Recording and Livestreaming: Heat dispersion mechanism combines a small fan and high-efficiency heat sink to achieve unlimited video recording...
RANK 6
Nikon Z 8 with Zoom Lens | Professional full-frame mirrorless hybrid...
  • 45.7MP stacked CMOS sensor and EXPEED 7 processing engine.
  • Nikon’s most advanced autofocus system. AF algorithm developed using deep learning technology, detects focus as low as -9 EV, combines subject detection and...
  • Internal 8K/60p and 4K/120p video. Internal 12-bit N-RAW and ProRes RAW recording.
  • Flexible still image file formats. RAW 14-bit, High Efficiency RAW, 10-bit HEIF and JPEG 8-bit.
  • Beautiful portraits made easy. Skin Softening, Portrait Impression Balance and Improved White Balance features. Blazing fast continuous shooting. 20, 30, 60 and...
SaleRANK 7
SanDisk 256GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Memory Card - C10, U3, V30, 4K UHD, SD Card...
  • Save time with card offload speeds of up to 200MB/s powered by SanDisk QuickFlow Technology (Up to 200MB/s read speeds, engineered with proprietary technology...
  • Pair with the SanDisk Professional PRO-READER SD and microSD to achieve maximum speeds (sold separately)
  • Shot speeds up to 140MB/s (Write speed up to 140MB/s. Based on internal testing; performance may be lower depending upon host device, interface, usage...
  • Perfect for shooting 4K UHD video and sequential burst mode photography (Full HD (1920x1080) and 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) video support may vary based upon host...
  • UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) and Video Speed Class 30 (V30) (UHS Speed Class 3 designates a performance option designed to support 4K UHD video recording with enabled...
RANK 8
Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera 4K
  • Full-Size 4/3 Sensor/ 4096X2160 Resolution
  • 4K Dki Video Recording At 60 Fps / 13 Stop Dynamic Range
  • Carbon Fiber Composite Build / Black Magic Operating System
  • 5" Touchscreen Lcd / 4 Built-In Microphones

Last update on 2024-02-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Reasons for Buying Raw Video Cameras

Here are some compelling reasons to consider investing in a Raw Video Camera:

Better image quality

Raw video footage contains significantly more data than compressed video footage, resulting in better image quality and greater flexibility in post-production. Raw footage captures every detail of an image, including color information, exposure, contrast, and dynamic range. This allows for much more control over the final image in post-production, including the ability to adjust exposure and color grading without losing quality.

Raw video cameras also provide higher bit depths and greater color space than compressed video cameras, resulting in more accurate and vibrant colors. Additionally, because raw footage contains all of the original image data, it allows for better noise reduction and sharper images. Overall, the use of raw video cameras can significantly improve the final quality of a video, making it a worthwhile investment for professional videographers and filmmakers.

Greater control over video output

Raw video cameras offer greater control over the final output of a video than traditional compressed video cameras. This is because raw footage contains all the original data captured by the camera’s sensor, without any compression or processing. This allows for more flexibility in post-production, as users can adjust exposure, white balance, color grading, and more with much greater precision.

With raw video, users can also capture more dynamic range and detail, leading to a more nuanced and professional-looking final product. Additionally, raw footage is often less susceptible to compression artifacts, which can occur in heavily compressed video files. This makes raw video cameras ideal for professional videographers and filmmakers who require maximum control over their video output.

More flexibility in editing and post-production process

Raw video cameras capture uncompressed and unprocessed video data, providing a wide range of flexibility in post-production. This means that the camera does not apply any of the processing that standard cameras do, such as sharpening, saturation, and white balance. Instead, the data is stored in a format that retains all the information captured by the camera’s sensor.

Raw video provides more control over the final image during post-production, allowing for greater flexibility in color correction, exposure adjustments, and other post-production processes. Raw video cameras also typically provide greater bit-depth and dynamic range, which provides more detail in the image. This gives filmmakers and videographers more creative freedom to manipulate the footage as they see fit, resulting in a higher quality final product.

What Things to Consider when Buying Raw Video Cameras?

To get the most out of your video footage, selecting the right camera is crucial. Several factors need to be considered before making a decision, including resolution, frame rates, sensor size, and connectivity options, among others.

Sensor size

Sensor size plays a crucial role in determining the image quality of a camera. When it comes to raw video cameras, the sensor’s size can significantly affect the camera’s dynamic range, noise performance, and low-light capabilities. A larger sensor ensures better light sensitivity, which translates to better image quality, especially in low-light conditions. Additionally, larger sensors provide a shallower depth-of-field, which is desirable for achieving a cinematic look. Therefore, before buying a raw video camera, it is essential to consider the sensor size as it directly impacts the quality of the video output.

Furthermore, the sensor size determines the crop factor of the camera, which is the ratio of the sensor size to that of a full-frame sensor. With a smaller sensor, the image will be cropped, leading to a narrower field of view. This can be a disadvantage, especially when shooting in tight spaces or when trying to capture a wide scene. Thus, for filmmakers looking for versatility in their shots, it’s important to consider a camera with a larger sensor as it offers a wider field of view, giving more options for framing and composition. In conclusion, the sensor size is a critical factor to consider when choosing a raw video camera as it impacts the image quality and versatility of the camera.

Bit depth

Bit depth is an important consideration when buying raw video cameras because it determines the amount of information recorded in each color channel. A higher bit depth means finer control over color and a wider range of colors can be captured. This translates to better color accuracy and smooth color gradation, especially in low light and high contrast scenes. Furthermore, a high bit depth gives more flexibility during post-production as there is less likelihood of banding or posterization when applying color grading or color correction.

In summary, considering bit depth before buying raw video cameras is important if you want to ensure high-quality footage with excellent color accuracy and flexibility during post-production. A higher bit depth provides more information in each color channel, resulting in finer control over color and a wider range of colors captured, leading to better image quality.

Codec

Codecs are essential to compressing and decompressing video files. When it comes to raw video cameras, the codecs used will determine the quality and ease of use for the post-production process. Higher quality codecs allow for greater flexibility with color grading and editing, while lower quality codecs can result in decreased dynamic range and image quality.

Additionally, different codecs have varying file sizes – an important consideration for storage space and workflow. Cameras with codecs that are widely accepted by editing software and playback devices can also make the editing process smoother and more efficient. Overall, considering the codec before buying a raw video camera can greatly impact the final product and production process.

Dynamic range

Dynamic range is a measure of the difference in brightness between the darkest and brightest areas in an image. When it comes to video cameras, a high dynamic range means that the camera can capture a wider range of light values, resulting in more accurate and detailed images. This is particularly important for professionals who need to capture high-quality footage with natural-looking colors and contrast and minimal loss of detail. Therefore, it is essential to consider a camera’s dynamic range before purchasing a Raw Video Camera.

A camera with a wide dynamic range can capture scenes with high contrast, such as bright sunlight and deep shadows, without overexposing or underexposing significant portions of the image. This is especially important when shooting raw video footage, as it provides the flexibility to adjust the image during post-production without losing valuable details. Raw footage requires careful processing in post-production, and a camera with a high dynamic range provides more room to adjust the image and make it look as natural as possible. Overall, considering dynamic range is crucial when buying raw video cameras as it affects the quality, flexibility, and usability of the video footage.

Frame rates

Frame rates are an essential consideration before purchasing a raw video camera primarily because they determine the quality and smoothness of footage captured during filming. Frame rates refer to the number of images recorded per second, and cameras with higher frame rates offer smoother playback, making them essential for capturing high-definition videos and slow-motion footage. When choosing a raw video camera, you should pay attention to the lowest and highest frame rates it can capture, the resolution offered, and how it handles motion blur and rolling shutter effects.

In conclusion, frame rates are crucial when buying raw video cameras because they affect the quality of the video being captured. Cameras with high frame rates allow for smoother footage, making them ideal for slow-motion and action-oriented content. As such, when buying a camera, it’s crucial to consider its frame rate capabilities to ensure that it meets your specific filming needs.

Lens compatibility

When buying a raw video camera, it’s essential to consider lens compatibility because the lens plays an integral role in determining the overall video quality. Different lenses have varying properties such as focal length, aperture, and image stabilization. Some cameras only work with specific lens mounts, which may limit your options.

Another crucial aspect to consider is lens resolution. RAW video cameras capture high-quality videos with every detail, which means the lenses should be able to deliver images that match the camera’s resolution. Therefore, the lens’s quality is just as important as the camera body when shooting RAW footage. By considering lens compatibility, you can ensure that the lens and the camera’s sensor will work well together, providing you with high-quality video footage.

FAQ

What is a raw video camera?

A raw video camera is a type of camera that captures data directly from the image sensor without any processing or compression. This means that all of the raw data captured by the camera is preserved, allowing for greater flexibility in post-production editing and color correction. Raw video cameras are typically used by professional filmmakers and videographers who require maximum control over their footage and need to be able to manipulate it extensively during post-production.

Raw video formats typically result in larger file sizes and require more processing power to edit, but the trade-off is greater control over the final image quality. Some popular raw video cameras on the market include the Blackmagic Design Pocket Cinema Camera, RED Digital Cinema cameras, and the Canon C300 Mark II.

What are the benefits of using a raw video camera over a traditional camera?

Raw video cameras offer several benefits that traditional cameras do not provide. One of the primary benefits is the ability to capture uncompressed footage, which preserves more detail and dynamic range than compressed video. Raw video also provides more flexibility in post-production, as the footage can be color-corrected and adjusted without sacrificing quality. Additionally, raw video cameras often have higher dynamic range capabilities than traditional cameras, allowing for better performance in low-light situations and greater detail in both shadows and highlights.

Another benefit of raw video cameras is the control they offer over settings such as ISO, shutter speed, and aperture. This allows for more precision in capturing footage in different lighting conditions and environments. Raw video cameras also often have interchangeable lenses, providing more versatility in capturing different types of shots. Overall, raw video cameras offer professionals and enthusiasts greater control and flexibility in capturing high-quality footage.

Can I edit raw footage on regular video editing software?

Yes, you can edit raw footage on regular video editing software. Most modern video editing software supports the import and editing of raw footage from various camera brands. However, editing raw footage requires a much higher processing power and storage capacity than editing compressed footage. The additional information present in raw footage can provide more flexibility in terms of color grading, exposure correction, and other adjustments. Some video editing software may also require you to install additional plugins or codecs to work with raw footage formats.

It’s worth noting that editing raw footage with basic computer specifications may result in slower playback and rendering times, making it difficult to work with. Additionally, raw footage files are often significantly larger than compressed footage, which can impact workflow and storage requirements. Therefore, it’s important to consider your computer’s specifications and available storage space before working with raw footage on video editing software.

Are raw video cameras more expensive than regular cameras?

Yes, raw video cameras are generally more expensive than regular cameras. This is because they have more advanced technology, bigger sensors for high-quality video recording, and better audio inputs and outputs for professional usage. Additionally, they often require more expensive accessories such as external recorders and lenses.

Final Thoughts

To sum up, the best raw video cameras mentioned in this article are all top-of-the-line choices for professional videographers and filmmakers. Whether you’re looking for excellent image quality, high frame rates, or user-friendly controls, there is a camera here for you. When shopping for the best raw video camera, it is important to consider your specific needs and budget, but you can’t go wrong with any of the options on this list of the best raw video cameras.

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