The Nikon D5200 is a great camera for the price, but it has a few small problems for film makers using this DSLR.
I’ve been using the D5200 for a while now and have just started exploring it’s HDMI output option. The lure of uncompressed 4:2:2 video using an external HDMI recorder is a pretty tempting feature of this camera, but it doesn’t come without it’s caveats.
These caveats are not very well documented, especially in the manual, and I tend to get the impression that’s no accident. Nikon have deliberately muddied the water around the HDMI output features to presumably take the attention off the fact that it can’t do many things you’d expect it to do. Let me name a few.
- When recording on the camera at the same time as using the HDMI output, your HDMI video will drop to 1280 x 720 resolution.
- When taking a picture in Live View with HDMI active, the HDMI video will go black as the shutter is activated.
- In order to get full, non-cropped video in the HDMI output without the on-screen display or the auto focus box, you have to press the “info” button located on top of the camera several times. Great, but doing that gets rid of the audio level meters on the camera’s lcd. Sure, you can monitor audio levels through HDMI, but it’s just another feature that’s been overlooked.
But the big one for me is this. Regardless of your movie settings or wether or not you have PAL or NTSC selected as a format in the menu, your HDMI output will always be a NTSC standard.
If you select HDMI = “Auto” in the menu, you will get 1080i at 59.94fps.
If you select HDMI = “1080i” in the menu, you will also get 1080i at 59.94fps.
If you select HDMI = “1080p” in the menu, you will get 1080p at 29.97fps.
If you select HDMI = “720p” in the menu, you will get 720p at 59.94fps.
So there is no chance of getting 25fps or 50fps out of HDMI! To bad for all the film makers in PAL counties, looks like you’ll have some conversion work ahead of you if you want to take advantage of the uncompressed HDMI video feature.
These tests are all done using my Black Magic Intensity Pro capture card. I’d be interested to hear how others get on.