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ade towell

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Posts posted by ade towell

  1. Ok have been using and testing the S5ii for a few weeks now as a replacement for Canon R6 and am overall very happy with it. Will be selling the R6.

    I did consider getting the R6ii but it was nearly £800 more expensive than the S5ii and still had some of the issues I had with the R6 - namely micro HDMI, no external monitor when using the touchscreen, and still the relatively poor DR of Canon mirrorless 

    The new R8 also came into the picture but no IBIS and poor battery life meant it wouldn't work for me.

    I looked at used R5's too but was put off by the 30 minute record limit, micro HDMI, lingering doubts about it still overheating and relatively poor DR with higher price tag and added expense of new cf express cards.

    Back to the S5ii and I've really enjoyed using it. Where I feel it is better than the R6 is...

    IBIS - this is big for me and didnt realise just how much better it is than on the R6. Has really helped speed up the filming process grabbing handheld shots I wouldn't have the confidence to do with the Canon.

    DR, again quite a big difference, image feels fuller and cleaner than R6

    Full size HDMI - again for me a biggie. I tried using a micro HDMI clamp on Fuji Xt3 and it still broke. I detest micro HDMI and has no place on a camera that claims to take video seriously. 

    External monitor works whilst still having access to a fully functioning touchscreen of the camera. You can also put luts on the monitor image. All very nice for my ageing eyes 

    Audio - this is the first mirrorless camera where I feel comfortable recording sound internally on important stuff. The 96khz 24 bit with line level and decent preamps I think make all the difference. I use Sound Devices mix pre-d for XLR on the base of the camera. I know Panasonic and Sony and now Canon using Tascam have an xlr audio adaptor you can attach to the hotshoe but that seems a crazy place to hang xlr cables to me and looks like an accident waiting to happen. Am very happy not using external audio and syncing up.

    AF for video - using the Sigma adaptor my EF lenses work on the S5ii just as well as they do on the R6. This has been a bit of a surprise I thought the R6 would still be better for AF but for my uses I think they are about the same. The S5ii sticks to its subject just as well. For stills I haven't really tested too much - for sports or wildlife fast moving stuff I presume the R6 maybe better but that's not what I photograph. Am still waiting for Capture one to be able to use RAW on the S5ii but have been very happy with the jpegs so far. Am aware the R6ii has improved feature with subject only that maybe better now for video AF

    Lenses - I got the 20-60mm and 50mm 1.8 with the S5ii at a good price. They are both great lenses for video - well built, silent and fast AF and come with good quality lens hoods. Drives me mad that with Canon you have to buy an L lens to get a hood. The 20-60mm is surprisingly good, 20mm is a great bonus when traditionally these zooms start at 24mm. The zoom ring is quite firm but solid and won't extend under gravity like my 24-105mm L lens is prone to do. I love the 50mm it has a nice big dampened focus ring and is a good size and weight on the S5ii, feels nicely balanced. Am using it way more than I ever did the little plastic 50mm stm lens I have for the R6 which was slow with AF and cheap feeling focus ring. I think these silent focusing Panasonic lenses are better for video than most of the noisy Canon lenses i have.

    Crop mode in apsc the S5ii is sharper and cleaner than the R6, handy for extra reach 

    Colour - I really like working with vlog in Resolve and feel it is more malleable than the Canon R6's clog3 which has less DR to play with and has some strange cut off going on in the shadows.

    One thing I will miss about the R6 is the Meike vari nd filter adapter I used which was great when using EF lenses and better and much cheaper thsn the Canon version. I hear that Meike are making one for the Panasonic so will be keen to get that so long as it works as well as the Sigma adaptor does.

    R6 has 4k 50p full frame but I don't use it so no big deal for me - obviously for some it is important 

    Anyway that's all I can think of for now, hope someone finds it useful


  2. Looks like a good little b-camera to have in the bag just wouldn't want to rely on it as my main.

    The lack of IBIS and tiny battery (why oh why Canon?) make this a definite pass for me, it's not quite an R6 replacement but does make the R6ii look way overpriced. Am very happy with the Panasonic S5ii and all its benefits for my needs and will be selling my R6. I have got too used to the amazing IBIS, full HDMI and great DR of the S5ii to go back to Canon mirrorless.

    But as already mentioned more budget choices are always good and encouraged, am sure Canon will sell a lot of these

  3. I remember that Cine D article - they tested the DR of the S1 before it had Vlog so comments about NR and lack of mojo were with it in 'standard' profile and so a bit premature in my book. They admitted as much when they tested it again after the Vlog update saying it totally transformed the camera. Have just found their follow up article which says...

    "To my taste, Panasonic used to enhance the red channel on their cameras, resulting in “red-ish” skin tones, but from what I can see when working with the LUMIX S1 and the new V-Log, this is a thing of the past. The images grade wonderfully (and easily). 

    ...we get a Dynamic Range result of 12.2 stops for V-LOG ISO640 (SNR = 2). This is the same as for HLG, but there is a considerable difference, as the camera produces a very organic looking noise floor (see fig. 1 below), with the potential to dig further into the shadows via post processing.

    The Panasonic LUMIX S1 has just become a better camera for filmmakers. I truly like how easy it is to grade and how the picture looks like in general."

    It was the S1H they tested later that had 13 stops DR similar to the C70. 

    I think the C70 and the C200 too when shooting in RAW both have a lovely full image, the Canon mirrorless cameras like R6 and R5 unfortunately suffer from a lack of DR, they don't seem to have the full range of latitude like the C70 does  especially in the shadows. There is something strange going on in the shadows with the R5 & R6 - seeing as we've gone there this is how our friends at Cine D describe the R6...

    "What can be observed is the fact that almost no noise floor is visible – it looks like lower stops are simply cut off.

    Hence, it will not be possible to dig into the shadows much without losing color and creating banding – confirmed by our latitude (underexposure) test "

    This is one of the frustrating things about the Canon mirrorless cameras and it is nice to get that big chunk of DR back with the S5ii. I think this tonal range helps in overall image quality.

    With Canon you have to buy one of their cinema cameras to get the full range of DR, at least in video. 


  4. No worries Django still have the R6 and will continue to test see which way I go too.

    Regarding AF I think the R6 is a little snappier at first latching on to a face, it's a small difference but have noticed it - once the Panny has hold though it's pretty solid and didn't do anything unexpected yesterday. Perhaps Panasonic will continue to tweak the AF, it's early days for them with PDAF and they're normally pretty good with firmware updates. 

    Got to say the S5ii footage in 4k apsc mode with kit lens at f5.6 1600 iso looks cleaner and to my eyes has a more pleasing image/colours than Canon R6 4k in full frame mode with L series 24-105mm at f4 1250 iso. That's surprised me - it was starting to get dark outside by the time I was using the R6 so the overall lighting had changed a bit. Tried your CST Resolve settings hyalinejim on the S5ii, and the R6 with Canon log3 to WDR lut - they both give the footage a bright glossy look with subtle differences. Sorry can't show any footage as of yet.

  5. Just to be clear it's the Canon R6 mark 1 I'm comparing the S5ii with, R6 mark 2 does solve some of the above issues such as 30 minute recording limit and overheating although I'm not 100% convinced by Canon on that. The Panasonic has a fan and been tested at much higher temperatures. But the R6ii is nearly £800 more expensive in the UK which puts it in a different price bracket for me

    Syncro scan was also really handy as all the speakers were in front of a screen

    Anyway just playing around a bit more and have to say the IBIS on the S5ii is amazing, completely different level to anything I've tried before - wow that opens up a lot of different shot possibilities and am sure will speed up b-roll process  

    Apologies for the stream of consciousness...

  6. Ok received the S5ii with 20-60mm and 50mm lens kit this morning, charged the battery had a very quick play and then took it with me on a shoot this afternoon - nothing too taxing or crazy, just filming speakers at a conference and took some photos in between.   

    Was able to use it instead of the Canon R6 until it ran out of battery (only had the one, lasted about as long as R6 battery does - couple of hours in 4k). Here are my thoughts so far...

    Some real positives over the R6 for this type of work -

    No 30 minute limit (one of the talks was 40 minutes) so was nice to capture it all

    Able to use my 7" monitor whilst having full access to the cameras touchscreen - this was lovely and so much more relaxing for my ageing eyes. Great to be able to put lut on monitor and also use full HDMI - even without a cage felt more reassuring than horrible micro

    No overheating whatsoever in 4k 10 bit 422 for 2 hours - priceless for peace of mind. Once the battery ran out had to use the R6 and overheating warning came on in the last hour so changed recording down to HD for the last speaker

    Comparing to the R6 they are very similar in size and weight - S5ii feels very solid, R6  a bit plasticy in comparison although slightly nicer grip in the hand (was marginal though and maybe dependent on hand size).  S5ii AF with the 20-60mm and 50mm 1.8 seemed to stick well once it locked onto a face. Nothing very taxing but did a good job I think - will need to check through all the footage but am pretty confident it worked as well as the R6 under these conditions

    Audio - used Sound Devices mix pre-d at line level 96khz 24 bit into the S5ii - seems to capture a clean sound, need to do some testing but think it is a step up from the R6 

    The 20-60mm lens is probably the best kit lenses I've used - well made, nicely dampened focus ring and zoom. Love that it's 20mm on the wide as opposed to standard 24mm, don't think I'll need any wider. Bit short on the long end but used it in apsc mode - quality seems a little sharper than the r6's crop mode but am only eyeballing off the screen

    The 50mm 1.8 is really nice, completely silent AF, nice size and lovely feel to the large focus ring, also quite pleasing bokeh from first impression, felt like a quality lens - obviously in a different price bracket to the Canon 50mm STM lens but yes a lot nicer to use 

    That's all for now, feel like it could be a good purchase though of course early days so time will tell, used vlog and am just trying some luts in Resolve now - looks pretty good for conference type lighting

  7. Not all STM lenses are quiet or fast with focus though in my experience - the EF 50mm STM I have is slow although not too noisy, even the RF 35mm STM I tried was quite slow and noisy with AF, the older EF USM lenses I have were better. I do have a Canon EF 70-300mm nano usm lens that is fast and quiet with AF. 

    This is where I think the Panasonic 1.8 primes will be great - they are all silent AF with focus breathing control and manual focus speed control. As you say most of Canon's lenses with nano usm are the slower zooms

    I think the Sigma adaptor has really given Panasonic a huge boost and the S5ii could interest both Sony and Canon users - to me it is now a perfectly valid hybrid or b-cam for a Canon c70 or C200 owner that has EF lenses.

    Likewise for Sony users who are still adapting EF lenses - by all accounts the L mount Sigma adaptor  works better for AF than the equivalent EF to e-mount adaptors. 

  8. Looking good.

    Be interesting to see how a faster and quieter focusing Canon ef lens works with the Sigma adaptor, if your 24-70 is anything like the Tamron 17-50 2.8 apsc version I had a few years ago - it wasn't great for AF on a canon body - noisy and sluggish.  

    Have just read that Meike may be making a vari-nd EF to L-mount filter adaptor like they have for Canon EF to RF. This has worked great for me (much cheaper and supposedly better than the official Canon version) and is one of the few things I will miss about the Canon R6. Hopefully it will work as well as the Sigma adaptor seems to

  9. 1 hour ago, hyalinejim said:

    @Django and anyone else who's interested I've uploaded a bunch of very short clips here at different resolutions and crop factors to check out:



    Thank you kindly sir,  above and beyond - get my camera either tomorrow or monday but this gives me something to play with in the meantime

  10. 1 hour ago, Django said:

    hmm.. but doesn't the Sigma MC-21 adapter kinda invalidate his point? As a Canon user myself, the above AF results on EF adapted lenses are rather impressive and could bait me to switch.

    Yes I agree and I'm a Canon R6 user who is switching - the S5ii sorts a lot of the issues I had with it that the Canon R6ii still has, but a big reason the move back to Panasonic should be fairly painless is because the Sigma adaptor seems to work really well on my EF lenses.

    hyalinejim congratulations, early days but how are you finding your new toy?

  11. Wex in the UK has stock for S5ii next day delivery, unfortunately for me it is still showing as pre-order for the kit with the 2 lenses - has anyone got their hands on one yet?

    Am interested to see how good the internal audio is - 96khz 24 bit and line level in with supposedly decent pre-amps should hopefully make recording seperate audio a thing of the past, at least for me. Pairing the Canon R6 with my Sound Devices Mix pre-d was quite disappointing and poor quality compared with the mix pre into Sony PCM M10 audio recorder. Panasonic seem to take audio a bit more seriously in their mirrorless cameras so fingers crossed their pre amps will be more comparable to the audio recorder.


  12. On 1/13/2023 at 1:05 PM, Django said:

    I don't shoot that much slow-mo either to be honest but when I do I really appreciate not having a crop.

    Another big advantage of shooting 4K50p is it halves the RS. That means 8ms on R6ii which is awesome.

    So I mostly shoot in 50p for fast handheld run & gun scenes where I want minimal RS and then conform to 25p no slowdown.

    50p is for me mostly a RS workaround trick with added slow mo possibility as a bonus!

    Ha OK I tried this today to help with the RS on the Canon R6 - and ran into overheating issues even quicker than I normally would. I can see it working great on cameras that don't overheat, but I guess that's not the R6...

  13. From what I've seen Panasonic have released a new firmware that deals with wobble effect up to 20mm. Looks like the Sony IBIS is effective when walking with active mode on - am presuming that is with a slight crop. Panasonic much better with just IBIS 

  14. Well I've actually pre-ordered but pretty much know what I'll get with Panny - over the years have had the DVX100, AF100, GH2 (still got), GH3 and more recently the S1 which I loved for the IBIS and the DR. Panasonic are probably my favourite of the Japanese camera companies for trying to give you solid, well built decent spec and normally are best value for money. Not as heavy with the cripple hammer as some and good for firmware updates to give you the best camera they can 

  15. Yes am curious too, from everything I have seen they seem to work pretty much as they do on my R6. For mission critical AF I would probably use the Panasonic lenses but need to do some testing. it's meant to start shipping at the end of the month, fingers crossed...

  16. Yes i hear you

    I had the micro HDMI on Fuji XT-3 break even with a clamp on so have always been a little wary of them since

    I looked at R5 but the 30 minute limit put me off. The R5c with no IBIS, poor battery and lower quality AF was not for me. The R3 is a beast and if you can afford it looks like the best mirrorless Canon offering by far.

    The price of the R6ii is high here too in the UK - £2779 whereas the Panasonic S5ii with 20-60mm and 50mm 1.8 lens is only £2399. A bargain I reckon. Both lenses are geared towards video with silent AF and the zoom even has focus breathing control. A lot of the more affordable RF primes such as the 35mm and 85mm have noisy and quite sluggish AF. Have just bought the Sigma adaptor used for £100 so will have full use of all EF lenses on the S5ii and AF looks pretty decent. We will see...

  17. That's great they've got anti flicker. 

    Good that for you it fixes everything but for me I think the R6ii only really sorted 2 of the main problems I had with the R6 - overheating, and the 30 minute limit - but not the other main grievances I had - poor DR, relatively poor IBIS, lack of touchscreen with external monitor, and that fookin micro HDMI. The S5ii ticks all those boxes

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