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Panasonic GH6


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2 hours ago, newfoundmass said:

No one forced you to respond to my initial post about dynamic range, and no one forced you to be rude because others think differently about it than you do. 

Everyone has different philosophies when it comes to filmmaking and video. This forum would be much better, and much more informative, if we moved beyond just talking about specs and also shared our philosophies, knowledge and experiences. Those are my favorite posts. 

Give me the threads where people actually share their experiences and thoughts about a camera they're using instead of yet another discussion about dynamic range, and why a camera is no good because it doesn't have 16 stops when camera X does for less money. 

I think I'm just sick of the polarised way we talk about specifications.  It seems that every specification that gets mentioned 1) spawns an entire tangent where we MUST descend down into a rabbit hole talking about the spec rather than letting it be part of a larger context, and 2) we MUST express only opinions that it is absolutely critical or irrelevant, and nothing in-between is mentioned or even tolerated, with usefulness comments treated as particularly heinous.

This all-or-nothing mentality applies to resolution, AF, low-light, stabilisation, etc.  People jump down that rabbit hole with all the nuance of Dr-Jekyll/Mr-Hyde.

I'm talking about DR because it's an active problem I have on my GH5, for the real-life situations I shoot in, and it's something that the GH6 improves upon with a headline feature.  Specifically it's something I've noticed that is dramatically less of a problem on the BMMCC than on the GH5, and they only have a stop or two of difference, so it's not an Alexa-or-bust type of situation - it's a situation where a small improvement would give a very large improvement in how many situations aren't capturable.

In terms of people talking about usage and thoughts and experiences, yes, I really enjoy those discussions, but they're almost never held here.  There's no reason they couldn't, but there are a bunch of subtle factors at play that discourage these discussions from happening more often.  I've tried to start more than my fair share of them, and mostly they just die with people typing, frankly, ridiculous replies that almost couldn't be designed better to take the conversation off-topic or to discourage meaningful discourse.  I think that's why a lot of great people leave these forums - they get sick of endlessly talking about specs without context and move into other places where the higher-order topics can be discussed, or stop talking about them at all.  It's definitely a challenge to get people on here to talk about anything outside the camera department (have a look at the level of engagement in the colour grading and editing threads I've tried to maintain) but we don't even talk about lighting here, and even the lenses section is relegated to a subforum where we know that topics go to die.  This is a camera forum at best, and a camera specification forum most of the time.  And most of the discussion is in threads about cameras that no-one here will ever own, and probably can't afford (Z9, R5C, etc etc).  Then a thread about the GH6 appears, and everyone makes fun of the technology behind the AF, and when a video comes out they don't like they write the entire camera off entirely, like somehow a poor image is the cameras fault, when others have previously posted great looking images.  

The more I concentrate on everything other than the camera box (lenses, colour grading, editing....  story *gasp*) the more I realise that the camera plays a very small part in the overall picture.
The whole "camera social media echo chamber" is perfectly designed to make you concentrate on the camera.  The image from a camera is more noticeable the better it is, great colour grading is credited to the camera not the colourist, great editing becomes invisible rather than standing out, great audio is completely invisible, great sound design is at-best subliminal if not invisible, and story is so deep a subject that there's no way it's going to get discussed here.  Cameras are where the action is from a specs point of view because the specs are really obvious.
The best camera videos actually have really rudimentary editing - compared to what I'm seeing in high-end TV the camera videos might be 10% on the editing scale, maybe 5%, or even less, sound design is similar - may 0-20%, story is often non-existent, but these camera videos are delivering cinematography at 80% or occasionally more of professional standards.  This teaches you to think of the camera as being the star of the show.  If the images looked poor then these videos would be laughed at almost universally, and yet the image quality of every award-winning anything from 20+ years ago would be worse.

I think the echo chamber is just losing its hold on me and I'm getting more frustrated by the specs-first polarised way that these things are discussed.  Sorry if I'm a bit rude amount it, but the more I learn about film-making, the more I realise these conversations are fundamentally missing the point, and wasting the opportunities to have a meaningful discussion.

As such, let's change it up from "no-one cares about DR" and "MFT is doomed due to its low DR compared to FF". 

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On 4/17/2022 at 5:59 PM, Mark Romero 2 said:

I am still totally thinking of getting a GH6. I could sell my Oly E-M1 MK II and my three sony aps-c cameras to help offset the cost a bit. But the thing is, E-M1 MK II just works. I don't ask a lot of it (just 8-bit natural profile at 30fps) using the 14-42mm kit zoom lens and it gets the job done.

It's the perfect PhD camera (Press Here, Dummy!)

I think if I got the GH6 I would spend too much time overcomplicating things 🙂

(My bold)

I agree.

Even though I really like my G9 and in absolute video quality it easily beats the E-M1 ii, the overall package of good ergonomics, superb natural-looking stabilization and decent video quality makes the Oly a good handheld 'just point it at the subject and press record' camera. I bought my used E-M1 ii during lockdown mostly to have a play with (never having owned an Oly camera before) and it's definitely grown on me - I can understand why people like them.

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This was mentioned earlier, but I forget the actual numbers... what are the ISOs for DR Boost in CineLikeD?

Also, is the ProRes a variable bitrate? And if so, will the picture profile affect the bitrate? Would vLog have less bitrate, because it's flatter, than a Rec709 profile like CineLikeD... or is variable bitrate affected more by motion?

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1 hour ago, hyalinejim said:

I think it's 800 but I don't know if the difference in highlight detail and/or shadow noise will be quite as noticeable in a Rec709 profile compared to log.

I've always been a fan of CineLikeD. It felt like a designed version of ProLost Flat as opposed to just optimal settings to get a flattish profile.

I have a BMMCC as a pseudo second camera (which I never really use) for its ProRes capabilities (FCPX user) so I wondered if it would be worth selling the micro to put that money toward a GH6...

I'm still really happy with my 5D3, so I probably won't. Haha.

Anyway, just curious. Thanks.

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Having a real EVF is a god send compared to the stupid Live View stuff. What a pain in the ass. And a big clunky body, like going back 50 years. My 1DC is a Dinosaur compared to my Sony a7s II.  3 times as much work to get it to work as they say.

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An interesting suite of tests, but the way they count stops of dynamic range is a bit odd. Their stop number "1" (which is clipping) should be "0".

If you're running a race and you're still at the starting line then you've ran exactly zero meters. You can choose to call the starting line "1 meter" but you haven't ran one meter until you've ran one meter (ie: their stop number "2").

Or, to put it another way, we should count the gaps between the lines on the waveform, not the number of lines themselves because the first of those lines represents zero dynamic range.

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12 hours ago, hyalinejim said:

An interesting suite of tests, but the way they count stops of dynamic range is a bit odd. Their stop number "1" (which is clipping) should be "0".

If you're running a race and you're still at the starting line then you've ran exactly zero meters. You can choose to call the starting line "1 meter" but you haven't ran one meter until you've ran one meter (ie: their stop number "2").

Or, to put it another way, we should count the gaps between the lines on the waveform, not the number of lines themselves because the first of those lines represents zero dynamic range.

Yes, quite interesting and much more useful than the CineD type tests that only measure DR at native ISOs etc.

It also reminds us not to compare DR results between different reviewers, which only adds to the value of this test as the methodology is (assumed to be) directly comparable between the four cameras they tested.

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That was a very useful article.  Despite the fact that I am a million miles away from that level of technical insight, my conclusion about the camera having used it for a few weeks is quite similar to theirs:

 

Quote

Having manipulated and tried to optimize the case as well as possible, the GH6 gives us the impression of a device that superimposes different technical “tweaks” and which will be difficult to tame. You will therefore have to know your GH6 well to really take advantage of it.

🤪

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6 hours ago, Mmmbeats said:

having used it for a few weeks

Would you have any insight on whether the 1080 modes are line skipped, aliased and mushy like some of the S series cameras, or clean and nice like the GH5? I still haven't been able to find this info anywhere online. I guess there is no love for HD in 2022 😪

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1 hour ago, hyalinejim said:

Would you have any insight on whether the 1080 modes are line skipped, aliased and mushy like some of the S series cameras, or clean and nice like the GH5? I still haven't been able to find this info anywhere online. I guess there is no love for HD in 2022 😪

I wish I knew when the 1080p/4K ProRes is coming? I'm interested in the GH6, but ONLY for the ProRes. I'm getting a new computer soon, so the 6K would be okay, but it's overkill for my needs.

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15 hours ago, hyalinejim said:

Would you have any insight on whether the 1080 modes are line skipped, aliased and mushy like some of the S series cameras, or clean and nice like the GH5? I still haven't been able to find this info anywhere online. I guess there is no love for HD in 2022 😪

I'm also in the 'no love for HD' camp, but I will do some tests when I get a mo.

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On 5/1/2022 at 7:15 PM, Mmmbeats said:

That was a very useful article.  Despite the fact that I am a million miles away from that level of technical insight, my conclusion about the camera having used it for a few weeks is quite similar to theirs:

I'm quite familiar with how the "feel" of footage from different cameras can be very different, and was heartened by how the S1 footage felt similar to the GH5.  

What does the footage feel like to you?  Obviously this is a highly subjective question, but keen to hear why you agree with their assessment about the footage being difficult to work with.

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58 minutes ago, kye said:

I'm quite familiar with how the "feel" of footage from different cameras can be very different, and was heartened by how the S1 footage felt similar to the GH5.  

What does the footage feel like to you?  Obviously this is a highly subjective question, but keen to hear why you agree with their assessment about the footage being difficult to work with.

The footage feels great. There's a definate shift towards more natural and accurate colour representation. This is probably helped perception-wise by the reduced artificial sharpening. 

It's producing really lovely natural tones that I'm very comfortable sliding in alongside my C70 footage (I'm not making a big effort to match the cameras at this point, but they are surprisingly close in any case). 

It's the camera itself that is tricky.   A lot more to manage than previous GH models.

That's a natural consequence of a more ambitious product, but there are a dizzying array of choices to navigate. 

DR Boost - sometimes or always? ND - fixed or variable? SD card or CFexpress?

Even battery choice is a consideration if you've already built a legacy collection! 

None of the above are easy to answer and require a bit of strategising.  If you're thinking any of that is simple to resolve you might not have given it enough consideration. 

It's a workflow pest! (but I'm very much enjoying using it). 

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22 minutes ago, Mmmbeats said:

The footage feels great. There's a definate shift towards more natural and accurate colour representation. This is probably helped perception-wise by the reduced artificial sharpening. 

It's producing really lovely natural tones that I'm very comfortable sliding in alongside my C70 footage (I'm not making a big effort to match the cameras at this point, but they are surprisingly close in any case). 

It's the camera itself that is tricky.   A lot more to manage than previous GH models.

That's a natural consequence of a more ambitious product, but there are a dizzying array of choices to navigate. 

DR Boost - sometimes or always? ND - fixed or variable? SD card or CFexpress?

Even battery choice is a consideration if you've already built a legacy collection! 

None of the above are easy to answer and require a bit of strategising.  If you're thinking any of that is simple to resolve you might not have given it enough consideration. 

It's a workflow pest! (but I'm very much enjoying using it). 

Yeah its something I like about a lot of older cameras, there isn't a lot to choose from and that is kinda nice.

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17 minutes ago, TomTheDP said:

Yeah its something I like about a lot of older cameras, there isn't a lot to choose from and that is kinda nice.

I think the trick with any kind of camera really is learning its capabilities and then settling into a workflow that is the ideal blend of convenience and perfectionism for your own personal tastes.

I'd be a bit suspicious of anybody who didn't at least try to maximise the performance of their equipment, but I'd be equally dubious of anyone who claimed to make zero compromises in how they end up operating in the field.  It's all a balance.

The main quandary with the GH6 is in managing the jump between Base ISO 250 (V-Log, DR+ Off) and ISO 2000 (DR+ On).  The Dr Boost function is very good and finally lifts the GH series into the heady realm of 'just about acceptable DR' 😅.

Actually, so far in practical use it has been fairly easy to utilise DR+.  I've invested in some high quality fixed ND (Breakthrough X4 - cannot recommend them highly enough) and just whack on the 6-stop and then calibrate a bit using ISO.  Has been working well so far.  Obviously this strategy will not cover all eventualities.

I'm a bit torn as to whether to just stay in DR+ mode regardless of the actual dynamic range of the scene (thus negating the need to constantly jump between very different ISO values).  It's going to be a close call actually.

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6 minutes ago, Mmmbeats said:

I think the trick with any kind of camera really is learning its capabilities and then settling into a workflow that is the ideal blend of convenience and perfectionism for your own personal tastes.

I'd be a bit suspicious of anybody who didn't at least try to maximise the performance of their equipment, but I'd be equally dubious of anyone who claimed to make zero compromises in how they end up operating in the field.  It's all a balance.

The main quandary with the GH6 is in managing the jump between Base ISO 250 (V-Log, DR+ Off) and ISO 2000 (DR+ On).  The Dr Boost function is very good and finally lifts the GH series into the heady realm of 'just about acceptable DR' 😅.

Actually, so far in practical use it has been fairly easy to utilise DR+.  I've invested in some high quality fixed ND (Breakthrough X4 - cannot recommend them highly enough) and just whack on the 6-stop and then calibrate a bit using ISO.  Has been working well so far.  Obviously this strategy will not cover all eventualities.

I'm a bit torn as to whether to just stay in DR+ mode regardless of the actual dynamic range of the scene (thus negating the need to constantly jump between very different ISO values).  It's going to be a close call actually.

I usually like having that extra dynamic range in the shadows. Of course I try to know my gear as well as I can but I do like single native ISO that is the same across the board regardless of frame rate.

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3 minutes ago, TomTheDP said:

I usually like having that extra dynamic range in the shadows. Of course I try to know my gear as well as I can but I do like single native ISO that is the same across the board regardless of frame rate.

Yeah, I feel you.  The GH4 was the classic easy to use camera in my experience.  Here we are 2 gens later and its like flying a spaceship!  But I am personally very happy to pay the usability price for the advancements in DR, low-light and stabilisation (and the other incremental improvements). 

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