How to Use an External Recorder with the Canon C200
One of the bigger hurdles to overcome with the Canon C200 is the large gap between its powerful, data-hungry RAW Light codec and its highly compressed 8-bit MP4. To bridge that gap and create broadcast-ready video, all you need is an external recorder like the Odyssey 7Q+ or the Atomos Shogun Flame. Let’s look at how to do that.
1. Choose HDMI or SDI Output
The Canon C200, like many professional-grade cameras, carries two kinds of video output connections, SDI and HDMI. It’s important to note that only one of these video outputs will be active at a time. SDI provides a more secure, locking connection which helps prevent accidental disconnects. HDMI, on the other hand, is supported on many more accessories and, at least on the C200, is your only option for providing a 4K output signal. Speaking of which...
2. Choose Your Resolution
The Canon C200 allows you to transmit video up to 2160p (also known as UHD) through the HDMI ports. The SDI connection, on the other hand, is only capable of 2048x1080 (Cinema 2K). Make sure your recorder and your camera agree on the settings, and we can move on to the next step.
3. Select The Frame Rate
External recorders like the Odyssey 7Q or the Atomos Shogun Flame are capable of choosing their own frame rate, but will often default to the settings coming out of the camera. Make your choice in-camera, and match the recorder to that.
4. Select Your Codec
Most of the time, you will be using an external unit to record either ProRes or DNxHD, as opposed to the MP4 codec included in the Canon C200. This article helps explain the differences between your ProRes options, while this one explains DNxHD. When in doubt, ProRes 422 strikes a good balance of size and quality.
5. OSD (Onscreen Display)
Outputs and Magnifications and making sure you’re not recording those functions or characters on the footage/external recorder. By default the magnification button is set to magnify both on the EVF, Touch Screen, and Video Terminals. Reassign this button to make sure it only triggers magnify over the ports you want by holding the Menu Button and tapping it. You can also set up an on-screen character to warn you when you are sending out characters over your video terminals.
Most external monitor/recorders can be set to trigger automatically when the camera begins recording, but you can also manually record at any time if you prefer. For automatic recording sync, make sure Rec Command is on in the camera. The recorder is simply getting a constant video feed from the camera. What you choose to do with that is entirely up to you. After all, you’re the expert now.