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Panasonic GH4 V-Log Tests

Leica 42.5 Lens
Leica 42.5 Lens

The GH4

Panasonic has released their version of V-Log for the GH4 to the world. This is some short tests of comparing it to the other Photo Styles. I choose to test it against: Standard, Cinelike V and Cinelike D.

The Log color space is designed to increase dynamic range and roll off highlights better. Also it is great for matching with other cameras. If all the cameras are shooting Log, they can be matched better in Post. Keep in mind Log is designed to be used in Post so your workflow will increase. While you can get the camera in the ballpark with preset LUT's (look up tables), but for best results it is advised to do the job of a Colorist and create the look you want and this is on a scene by scene basis.

We did not use LUT's for these tests. Instead Color Finale for FCPX was used for these tests. Exposure and Chroma was the only things corrected to get the image to normal levels as Log is very flat and dull to compare to the other Photo Styles.

In these tests I did not see a lot of difference between Cinelike D and V-Log. Cinelike D is a lot easier to shoot and edit. I would recommend V-Log for shoots that need camera matching and those that require a cinematic color grade.

Swimming with sound: The Sound Shark

1504 Sound Shark ProjHalf of what we do as media producers is record audio. The other half of course is video. Quite a few of us forget about that and sometimes something comes along that helps us record better audio. One of the most popular things to do when recording with a small mirrorless or HDSLR's is to mount a short shotgun microphone on top of the camera. Most shotgun microphones are to be used vertically not horizontally like when they're mounted on a camera. The microphone does not do the best rejection and does not give you the best audio in front of the camera.

The makers of the Sound Shark have made a product that tries to solve this problem. The Sound Shark is a parabolic microphone using a small lavaliere in the dish. They Call it the “Zoom Lens” of Audio. It extends the range of audio that can be recorded, up to 30 feet. They are using proven technology that is used every day to record sound at a distance, such as football games and the professional sports. The basic unit with out microphone is $400.

Watch the review to see the Sound Shark in action.

Watch the video to see the Sound Shark in action.

E-M5 Mark II does News

1503 Irrigation FloatI have taken the new Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark 5 to do news reports for the local radio station's YouTube channel.

Most of the time the camera has behaved well. One occasion there was some moire, but minor. My bigger complaint with this camera is that the camera locks all the controls once you push the record button. The control wheels do nothing. The viewfinder does not change to the LCD when I take my eye away from it. If you are using the rear swivel LCD, one item (aperture, shutter, exposure compensation, ISO, audio volume) at a time can be changed on the touch screen. You can refocus auto focus lenses by pushing the viewfinder button. This is not very intuitive and rather awkward. (I prefer my GH4 as all I have the do to refocus is half way push the big record button.) Since I have the battery grip I can monitor audio but that must be removed to replace a battery in the camera.

On the plus side, the camera is small and light weight. The viewfinder and LCD are very sharp with a hight number of pixels with a very good refresh rate. The image stabilizer is amazing. The auto white balance is great outside and good inside. It is nice knowing that the camera is weather sealed here in the Pacific Northwest.

Overall a great stills camera and a good video camera.

Here two reports shot with the camera and edited in FCPX.

Olympus E-M5 II Interview with Ray Acevedo

OM-D E-M5 II
OM-D E-M5 II

Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II

Last Saturday while I was at the Kenmore Camera Anniversary Sale I had a chance to talk to Ray Acevedo from Olympus Imaging about the new Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II micro-fourthirds camera. I like so much that I bought one.

Flickr Set.

Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II Arrival

OMD UnBoxingSaturday was the Kenmore Camera Anniversary Sale. Olympus was on hand with the new Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II. As turns out, they supplied Kenmore with some of the first cameras in the country. The official release date I was told was Feb. 27th. I bought one after putting it through it's paces in the store. I took it home with me and opened the box and this is what I found.

Flickr Set.

The Lumix 35-100mm F2.8 is Updated

Sorry for being away for so long. I had a very busy fall.

GH2 with X 35-100mm

GH2 with X 35-100mm

A new important firmware update is available today from Panasonic. It address a problem that has had many owners unhappy. Some have returned the lens. I like my lens, but have noticed the micro-jitters people are complaining about. I even tested another lens at Kenmore Camera.

The new firmware update for the Panasonic Lumix G X 35-100mm F2.8 O.I.S lens improves the stability of O.I.S (Optical Image Stabilizer) in Motion Picture recording. An important update when using Panasonic DMC-GH3 and the 4K video recording DMC-GH4 mirrorless models. 

Details are at Panasonic support page.

The Panasonic H-HS35100 35-100mm f/2.8 lens has construction including 18 elements / 13 groups of optical elements crafted from Ultra Extra-Low Dispersion (UED) and Extra-Low Dispersion (ED) glass, and uses Panasonic’s Nano Surface Coating to minimize internal reflections and flare.

My verdict: A definite improvement. I have not used this lens as much as would have liked but now I will use it more.

Silverdale Whaling Days Fireworks.

4K Fireworks

4K Fireworks

Here we go again. More fireworks shot with the Lumix GH4. This time the fireworks were shot in 4K and edited with Final Cut Pro X at 1080p Full HD. The lens used was the New Lumix 14-140mm at f5.6. The ISO was 1600 and the shutter speed was at 60th of a second. The sound was recorded with the built-in microphone in the camera.

Editing was done FCPX we had no trouble dealing with the 4K video. Audio was offset a little because light arrives before sound at a distance.

The image above is a frame grab from the 4K. I just love being able to pull a high resolution still from a movie. Here is the video.

2014 Neighborhood Fireworks at 96fps

Screen Shot 2014-07-06 at 4.27.51 PMOver the Forth of July here in these United States there are lots of fireworks celebrating our Independence Day. I decided to take the Lumix GH4 out and shoot some of our local fireworks at 96 frames a second. One of the nice new features of the GH4 is the ability to shoot slow motion in the camera. That way when I play it back it plays in slow motion. I set the iso of the camera at 1600. I used the new Lumix 14-140mm lens. I am real happy with the results. I hope you enjoy them.

GH4 Firmware Update

Panasonic has released a firmware update for the GH4. The improvement is: 1. Improved the reliability of video recording performance. It was issued today, 2014/07/01.

Also the lustrous Leica G 42.5mm f1.2 Nocticron got an update as well. The lens is know as to Panasonic as the H-NS043. The improvements are: 1. Improved the motion picture quality under high sensitivity in use with GH4.

For those of you who have a Lumix GM1 there is an update as well. The improvements are: 1. Connection problem with Apple iOS devices via Wi-Fi is fixed.

The update can be found here: http://panasonic.jp/support/global/cs/dsc/download/fts/index.html