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Andrew Reid

An adventure into the Panasonic GX85/80 begins - and a look at the Leica Nocticron for Micro Four Thirds

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2 hours ago, John Matthews said:

With a Panasonic cameras, where should one set zebras to not blow out highlights. I set them to 105, but they lose color info. I tried 95, but it's the same issue. What's common practice?

What do you mean by they lose color info?

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs
1 hour ago, IronFilm said:

Yes, but it also makes it pointless swapping a Nikon mount version for a Canon mount version like the guy I quoted was proposing to do. 

The Canon version is necessary as the Metabones adapter needs to electronically transmit the focal length of the lens to the body for stabilisation to work with a zoom lens.

With the Nikon version and no electronic contacts on the Speed Booster adapter, you'd have to dive into the menu to set the focal length manually every time you reframed.

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1 hour ago, Andrew Reid said:

With the Nikon version and no electronic contacts on the Speed Booster adapter, you'd have to dive into the menu to set the focal length manually every time you reframed.

Hmmm...  short cuts can be set up for that? And if it is 18mm or 20mm doesn't make sure a big deal does it?

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2 hours ago, IronFilm said:

Yes, but it also makes it pointless swapping a Nikon mount version for a Canon mount version like the guy I quoted was proposing to do. 

Ah, yeah didn't catch he had one already

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2 hours ago, IronFilm said:

Hmmm...  short cuts can be set up for that? And if it is 18mm or 20mm doesn't make sure a big deal does it?

Since the stabilisation seems to rely on the camera knowing what focal length the lens is at, sure you could use a Nikon metabones, but you'd have to tell the camera what focal length the lens you have mounted is (it looks like a dialogue comes up). Zooms would prove frustrating though, I think. You couldn't zoom a lens without having to tell the camera you've changed focal length, since it's not reading this information. So in practice: no zooming in the middle of recording (I think!)

(EDIT)... Oh, I see... you mean FN button shortcuts... I have no idea about that, I'm afraid.

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1 hour ago, ThomHaig said:

Since the stabilisation seems to rely on the camera knowing what focal length the lens is at, sure you could use a Nikon metabones, but you'd have to tell the camera what focal length the lens you have mounted is (it looks like a dialogue comes up). Zooms would prove frustrating though, I think. You couldn't zoom a lens without having to tell the camera you've changed focal length, since it's not reading this information. So in practice: no zooming in the middle of recording (I think!)

(EDIT)... Oh, I see... you mean FN button shortcuts... I have no idea about that, I'm afraid.

I have actually tried using my nikon tamron 17-50mm and set the cameras focal length to a middle value and the stabilisation (including panning) is still pretty decent throughout the range! 

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My notes on peaking:

I'm using a Pentax 50 f1.7. It's difficult to see any peaking at all when set to f1.7. Go to F5.6 and you can easily see what's in focus. However, if you set the monitor/LVF to monochrome (still records in color) and peaking on "low" and color set on "red," it works much better. I'm think it would be even better with a sharper lens at f1.7. Thinking back to my RX100, it did an all-around better job at showing what was in focus though. Problem was, the body was so small you would jitter it all over the place when turning the focus ring. As far as tech., I'm not sure what Sony did that Panasonic didn't.

On another note, for a right-eyed person looking through the LVF, moving your finger over an inactive touch screen and having it magnify upon release is absolutely brilliant! Great use of tech.

A short note on saving battery:

You can turn off the display by hitting the display button a 5 times. Turn on the eye sensor for auto LVF/MON. Set economy to one minute. LVF only turns on when your eye is close. Camera goes to sleep after one minute and starts up very quickly upon half-shutter press. 

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4 hours ago, IronFilm said:

short cuts can be set up for that? And if it is 18mm or 20mm doesn't make sure a big deal does it?

You have the possibility to have 3 presets for focal lengths. When you change your focal length, you'd need to set up a fn button and with two taps, it'll be set. Not too bad in a pinch, but if you're changing focal lengths all the time, I think a zoom which communicated focal lengths would be ideal. 

8 minutes ago, johnnymossville said:

This camera excites me.   I wasn't planning on any new camera gear this year, but I have to admit this seems to be checking many boxes for me.  

If it's popular enough, maybe Andrew will write a guide... focussing on the camera and how to shoot effectively with stabilization and get the highest IQ from a camera without the "pro" features of Vlog and such. I'd buy it. :) 

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13 hours ago, John Matthews said:

I should have been clearer though. I'm not a newbee to Linux, but I've never used it as a day-to-day machine workhorse. I've installed countless distros into Virtualbox in the hopes to finding:

1) a stable/secure desktop environment

2) pro and free solutions for both video and photo editing without too much fuss

Not sure what you are after in regards to a "stable/secure desktop," but running an OS in a VM might not be the best way to test such "stability," because of the resource drain and potential glitches.  I have used a lot of different desktops and window managers in the past 14 years, and I never had any problems that I can recall.  I tend to use lightweight window managers instead of full desktops.  By the way, those who use tiling widow managers usually run circles around their "point-&_click" counterparts.

 

In regards to "pro and free" video and photo editors, the two are most definitely not mutually exclusive.  A significant number of pros use open source (free) software -- even photo and video editors.

 

 

13 hours ago, John Matthews said:

To restate my question in clearer terms: If I'm a "pro" running Linux in the film capital of the world (maybe that's your case), what would I most likely be using?

For an NLE/compositor, you would probably be using Blender, Cinelerra, Lightworks or Pirnanha (proprietary, with the high-end version at US$250,000).  Kdenlive looks like a good NLE, and it is has become more robust and a lot more popular since I played around with it many years ago.  The studio version of the Lightworks NLE is probably pretty good, but I have never tried it.

 

There are numerous image editors/processors that run on Linux.  My favorites are GIMP and Darktable, but there is also Krita, CinePaint, RawTherapee, Raw Studio, Delaboratory, UFRaw, GTKRawGallery, LightZone, Pixeluvo (looks like an interesting processor/editor combo), Photivo, AfterShot Pro, Fotoxx, etc.  These are mostly raster image editors, and, of course, there are also a few open source vector image creators/editors.

 

 

13 hours ago, John Matthews said:

My technical abilities are probably going to be sufficient or I can put in some effort and time. I just don't want to waste time on software that lacks community and developers. I would like to learn something that I know will be supported in the the future (5-10 years) and that has a following.

Both proprietary and open source projects come and go, and no one can guarantee the future.  I am guessing that you don't want to stick with FCP.  For open source NLEs, Blender has a strong community with a lot of folks crazy about its editing capabilities.  The community version of Cinelerra is updated fairly regularly, and it has some unique capabilities (but its default theme is rather garish).  I don't know much about the proprietary NLEs, but I think Lightworks has a following.  I am keeping my eye on Kdenlive.

 

 

13 hours ago, John Matthews said:

Concerning the GX80, only Raw Therapee will allow me to edit the raw files.

I wouldn't be so sure of that.  I would guess that a few others in the list of the open source image processors above can already read raw files from the GX80.  Open source projects can move fast.

 

 

13 hours ago, John Matthews said:

I just can't seem to get better results than the in-camera jpegs (which look great). All my previous cameras have had inferior results when compared to software. Not the GX80. I spend most of my time trying to get a result that the camera would have given me out of the box in the first place. The major problem is color.

Most of the raw image processing apps have fine color control.

 

I don't know much about RawTherapee, but Darktable has preset camera color profiles for certain camera models/brands/film stocks.  Darktable usually defaults the profile brand/model it reads from exif info, but I sometimes use an Agfa profile on my Canon raw images.  Of course, Darktable also allows one to create and save custom profiles.  I would imagine that RawTherapee and a lot of the other open source raw image processors offer similar preset/custom profile capability.

 

 

13 hours ago, John Matthews said:

Do you know if RawTherapee is still being actively developed? Or, have most people moved on to Darktable?

Judging from the fact that RawTherapee already has the capability to import the GX80/85 raw files, I would guess that there is some current activity in that project.

 

I don't know if people have moved from RawTherapee to Darktable -- there are so many options in the open source world, as evident from the above list if photo editors and raw image processors.  I use Darktable because that's what I started with years ago.

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Andrew great article what a game changer for such a small price. Curious how your going to rig the GX80/85 with recorder and xlr mic and yet retain that small non threatening form factor. Would be an elegant arrangement.

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I'm sure Andrew will do more comprehensive tests and show some artistic footage later. All I have time for right now is little tests.

To users of the G7, this may be kind of old news. But I'm finding with 4k and the improved processing compared to the GH4, you can raise shadows more cleanly than ever before on a Panasonic mirrorless camera. In this test, I shot at ISO 200 and exposed to just before the 105% zebras started showing. The first clip is the raw footage, the second is with raised shadows and the third is graded. With this method you can easily get a shot with the same tonality as what your eyes see and have absolutely minimal noise.

 

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12 hours ago, duffman said:

So we have panasonic 4K, good dynamic range, colour looks nice, and the olympus IBIS? Starting to wonder where they can go from here, other than low light performance. Sounds like an awesome camera, I might even buy one.

I swear Panasonic have tweaked the colour since the GH4. I am getting much more Canon-like results from the GX85. New image processor?

11 hours ago, IronFilm said:

Hmmm...  short cuts can be set up for that? And if it is 18mm or 20mm doesn't make sure a big deal does it?

What short cut would you propose? It's just stupid to have to go into the menu and set 18mm, then go into the menu and set 35mm right at the critical moment when you're trying to frame up a shot. And if you're doing regular zooming, forget about it. Just take my advice and use the Canon version! :)

If you set the camera's stabilisation in the middle of the range for the Nikon version, say 25mm, it wouldn't work optimally at 18mm or 35mm, you'd get jitter.

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30 minutes ago, Andrew Reid said:

getting much more Canon-like results from the GX85

I wonder, what is meant by 'Canon-like results' in practice? Which Canon camera? I have never used Canon and have never seen the Canon image, which I would like. So, just curious... Thank you.

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I am almost totally happy owner of the Sony a5100 and I only complain about that it can't be powered externally (like the GX80 does) and, a lot more annoying, about the overheating issues.
Does the GX80 overheating issues?

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2 hours ago, trafficarte said:

I am almost totally happy owner of the Sony a5100 and I only complain about that it can't be powered externally (like the GX80 does) and, a lot more annoying, about the overheating issues.
Does the GX80 overheating issues?

I think Mirrorlesson tested it out and no overheating in 4K with IBIS..

 

Something that Sony still haven't been able to figure out after their first NEX offering, their latest APS-C offering still overheat even in still mode.

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3 hours ago, trafficarte said:

I am almost totally happy owner of the Sony a5100 and I only complain about that it can't be powered externally (like the GX80 does) and, a lot more annoying, about the overheating issues.
Does the GX80 overheating issues?

I guess that Gordon at Cameralabs told that the camera could only be charged by usb, not powered - the usb only could be used for charging with the camera switched off.

Andrew, could you confirm this?

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