Lit by the stars: Canon ME-20F-SH shoots Milky Way and meteor shower video at ISO 400,000


posted Thursday, September 15, 2016 at 5:59 AM EDT


Uncage the Soul Productions recently took the specialized Canon ME20F-SH video camera out under the stars to capture footage at ISO 400,000. The camera was paired with a Sigma 20mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art lens and follows a group of high school students from an astronomy camp as they observed this year’s Perseids meteor shower.

The ME20F-SH is capable of recording full HD video at a maximum sensitivity of 4,000,000 using its full-frame CMOS sensor. Interestingly the camera is incapable of internally recording video, and so it must be connected to an external recording device. The Cinema Lock EF mount-equipped camera is designed from the ground up to work in a wide variety of rigs and is designed for night surveillance, wildlife and nature documentary work and much more. Given its high ISO capabilities, it feels at home under a dark night sky.

The video below is a staggering display of how far video recording and sensor technology has come. Recording high definition footage of the Milky Way or meteors was a pipe dream not all that many years ago. While the tech itself is quite interesting -- you can read more about it here and here -- it’s interesting to see artists putting it to use to tell visual stories they otherwise wouldn’t have been able to. Ultimately, this is what excites me most about new camera technology, the ability to share your vision in new ways. 

If you’d like to record videos like this with a Canon ME20F-SH of your own, you’ll need just under $20,000 to get your hands on the body. It’s a steep price to pay, but this is a highly-specialized camera. Perhaps someday some of the technology will trickle down into cameras with more consumer-friendly prices.

(Seen via Canon Watch)