WHY are there Recording Limits on Cameras? 🕤

WHY are there Recording Limits on Cameras? 🕤

November 25, 2019 44 By Kailee Schamberger


What Brainiac put recording limits on DSLR cameras? Let’s find out. [SUBSCRIBE PLEASE!] DLSRs have limitations on how long they can record video. Why? Well, well, there’s a couple of reasons. Initially, recording video on a DSLR camera was kind of an accident. Adding video to a DSLR let press photographers capture short clips for their websites, but more so, consumers wanted to do video as well as photography with their cameras. It was kind of an afterthought and when people saw they could not only do video, but do it with all the cool features the camera they had such as they did with photos. Interchangeable lenses, beautiful depth, sharp images, without having to invest tens of thousands into high-end filmmaking video equipment, that market eventually [explosion sound] exploded. In many places across the world, there are laws that decide what makes a video camera, and what makes a photography camera, and the decision was based on, does it record video or take pictures? And the law stated what constituted a video, as in, X minutes long. And the difference was how much these items were taxed – import taxes. You paid much more tax on a video type camera than photo type cameras, and when you’re Sony, Canon and Nikon, that’s a hell of a lot of tax to pay – tens of millions of dollars in fees to get their product into a country. And why would a photographer, their bread and butter audience at the time, want to pay more for a camera to handle video, which they didn’t use? So, the first reason they have recording limits is tax and the cost to the company and consumers. Now, before you jump up and scream how terrible the manufacturers, governments and big business is, there are other reasons these cameras were limited in recording time. The next is the file system used at the time by these camera cards for recording. The file system was called FAT32, and that system could only handle a max file size of 4 gigabytes. That sounds like a lot, but manufacturers had to set some limit, as they don’t know if you’re shooting in a resolution of 480, 720, 1080 or beyond, and it’s mathematically simpler to just set a time limit of like 10 or 12 minutes. So, the technology, the file system at the time, also imposed this limit. Next, unlike video cameras, photography cameras were small and compact, and not designed with higher-end technology to handle heat. Recording for a long time would cause the camera to overheat, and a complete re-design to handle this new video shooting on a photography camera was not practical. For all these reasons, it was best for both the manufacturer and consumer to limit the recording time. If you have one of these older DSLRs, no problem, just plan what you are going to shoot, and frankly, just hitting record and letting it run for hours is not suggested – especially when you go to edit that footage. In the meantime, camera manufacturers are starting to use newer file systems, and even upgrade their firmware to accommodate. That camera over there, a Canon 5D Mark III, which I love and have no reason to replace at this time, records up to 4-gigabytes, which I can use up in about 6-8 minutes shooting full frame and capturing every frame. Not a problem – it’s been updated so when it gets to its limit, it starts a new file, and just keeps recording. I bring 28 minutes of video into my editor and it’s two or three files, I place them next to each other, and they are perfect, not a single frame was lost in that 28 minutes. As technology evolves, and since the volume of cameras being sold for video has exploded, these manufacturers are beginning to ignore the tax ramifications, and since many photographers now require video, the tax liabilities are coming off the table. You’ll see newer file systems, larger cards, DLSR type cameras that can record for longer lengths without overheating, and so on. And there are cameras that will do the type of activity you want, such GoPros and action cameras, which DSLRs aren’t design to do. The moral of the story is to purchase the type of camera for the type of things you will be doing. If you already own a DSLR, don’t forget to periodically see if firmware updates are available as they may have added features you didn’t know existed, such as longer recording lengths. You can also push record, let it play out until it fails, and see what happens to the footage when it stops recording. It’s always a good idea to know the limitations of your camera. And I’ll say this again, really long videos are a real pain to edit, and it doesn’t take much to shoot a video in segments, and makes it much easier on you and your computer in post. If you MUST shoot longer videos, either consider renting or buying a different camera designed for that purpose, or use the HDMI out on newer cameras to record the footage to an external recorder. Understand the limits of your DSLR, research the limits if you are going to buy a new DSLR, and don’t forget that a DSLR is not an end all shooting camera for every situation. I’ve included links in the description to various cameras you can take a look at, and don’t forget to click the subscribe button if you like these videos. I hope that helps, thanks for watching, and we’ll see you next time. [COMMENT…I REPLY] [LIKE…I SMILE] [SUBSCRIBE…I say YAY!] [WAIT FOR IT…] And many of these… [DROPS CAMERA} Oh…s**t! Oops!