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Panasonic GM1 review - another pocket cinema camera


Andrew Reid
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I dont just shoot on AWB ever!! or preset daylight ot tungsten , dial it in on each shot and you will get nice skin tones!!

thats why its called colour temperature and on skin tones its very important

 

With raw it helps, because you can set the WB in post!

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But most of the time with a normal amount of contrast in an image your shadows will crush at some point so you don't notice the crap lurking in them.

 

The difference is when you have skin tones which are backlit, or not optimally lit or in the shade, and you still need them to look great, with raw you have that extra colour information and a more gentle gradation to play with in post.

 

I agree, that if you bring the contrast of RAW video down to H.264 levels they both crush the shadows.  My problem is I can't bring the H.264 back up to the nuanced contrast I want, and can get, with the BMPCC or ML RAW, for example.  The only way to get good shadow detail with H.264, is to light it in a studio.

 

Whenever I shoot H.264 on a cloudy day all is nice enough.  However, once the sun comes out everything goes to crap, excuse my french ;)

 

And yes, i agree with you about skin tones and backlight.  Yet, my experience with H.264 is the lack of color information and high contrast means you end up with a very cartoon-y image.  Ugly to me.  

 

As a point-and-shoot video camera, talking IQ only, I can't see how the GM1 would be in the same league in anything but scenes with 2-3 stops of dynamic range.  

 

Bottom line for me, there are scenes I shoot with the BMPCC that I know would be just as good with the H.264 (and with so much less pain!).  Yet for any scene with more than 2-3 stops of dynamic range, the BMPCC, right out of the box, with little grading,  just muscles its way past those other cameras.  It powers through 10 times more data than an H.264 camera, and when I hit a hill, I notice ;)

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Skin tones depend on how you light them - Ive spent 15 years shooting girls in pop videos and its all about the lighting getting good skin tonesand the diffusion too ,

I do use alot of 85 (orange) with Lee diffusion on my lights this makes the skin warm , then dial in your colour balance manually until you hit a colour temperature with a colour you like - its very simple really !

I dont just shoot on AWB ever!! or preset daylight ot tungsten , dial it in on each shot and you will get nice skin tones!!

thats why its called colour temperature and on skin tones its very important

 

Hey Andy, do you have a link so some videos you've shot completely with the G6?

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The size is the main advantage. It makes all sorts of rigging possible or easier and cheaper. Great for multicopters and ariel shoots.

 

 

Dear Andrew,

I'm now trying to prepare a new multicopter rig (I already have one with gopro + DJI and 650D+Mikrokopter) as I need something in between these 2 and found the GM1 quite interesting.

Let's imagine that the money is not an issue, only weight and quality for aerial video.

What will be your advice between the GH1 and the Sony RX100II? (or even something else,the BPCC? )

The weight is similar, recording possibilities also.

What's mater is, jello effect, image stabilization, largest deep of field (small sensor?), and possibly 50p or (2.7K as the go pro to be able to crop and stabilize in post) and wide lens availability (about 20 to 24 is perfect, the 28 on the Sony seems to narrow already)

 

I'm also waiting to received this possible rig ( http://www.back-bone.ca/final-design-revealed/ ) to create something super light.

 

[Thanks for your hard work on this forum and website, always a pleasure to follow you.]

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I think it's kind of mute to set the GM1 against the BMPCC other than Andrew did - show that the video side of this little box is also unexpected great. One is a happy little work-pony, the other a high velocity bonsai-cheetah. RAW is better than AVCHD? Yes, it better should. But AVCHD is not all that bad.

GM1 is a 700 € sneak & carry lightly photocamera that has, nearly as a side-effect, great video. Have mine since yesterday and it is really interesting what it is able to achieve. And it comes with a slow but excellent zoom. I may later get an BMPCC too, if my wives budgetary plannings allow it :-) ...and yes, this one is probably in a different class .... but also price-wise. For good reasons.

For people who also want to take excellent photographies & video & want to get a pack of features coming with the camera, the GM1 is an excellent addition, especially to an already in place MFT system. And Andrew is right - my Voigtlaenders started a new love affair with this one.

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This is my test shots on G6: 

 

 

Thanks! I'd actually already seen some of your test shots when I was searching for stuff shot on the G6, but hadn't seen the final piece. 

 

I should have a D5300 in the next couple of days and believe I'll be mostly satisfied with it for my needs, but I'm still intrigued by the G6. It's going for about $500US now, and from your video and other's I've seen, it might be worth getting in addition to the D5300 for no other reason than being able to play with a MFT camera with a speed booster or one of the knock offs. Has anyone here compared the knock-off speed boosters with the pricier Metabones one?

 

Your video looks excellent, and proof that I'd be plenty satisfied with the image a G6 can produce. Glad it was suggested to me by Matt, and thanks again for the sample!  

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Wow Rolf! Amazing low-light footage, what a great combination this GM1 and the Voigtländer make, especially in the shots with shallow DOF it has an beautiful cinematic quality. Perhaps it will be the GM1 instead of the D5300... Show us more, please :)

 

It will surely benefit from a shoulder-rig or monopod to eliminate the wobble!

 

Do you also have an Metabones Speedbooster to show the look with full frame lenses?

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Very nice Rolf.

 

Based on what I am seeing, I just picked one up today to compliment my GH3.

 

I did some quick and dirty static video tests in low light.

WOW, I agree. I do think the GM1 is better (much less noise for sure)!

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Hey Andy, do you have a link so some videos you've shot completely with the G6?

 

Skiphunt

this was completely shot on the Panasonic G6 with Zeiss Vario Sonnar, Canon FD L series lenses, Zeiss Primes and some fx shots with a

custom modified Canon C mount zoom and Pentax 25mm c mount cctv lens

some shots where at 50 frames a second

all shot and lit in color (natural profile) then de sated in post

 

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It will surely benefit from a shoulder-rig or monopod to eliminate the wobble!
 
Do you also have an Metabones Speedbooster to show the look with full frame lenses?


No speedbooster (yet). Shoulder rig and monopod woul defy sneakability me thinks. What I am thinking about currently how to set it up with my iphone. Wi-Fi connection does not really work that well, shows what the camera sees but can not start it. Have to find out why.

Next round with ISO 1600. I am nearly shocked how well that thing works in low-light, expected different results and am a happy costumer by now.
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Im getting a lot longer time on the G6 than my GH2 battery

I shot that whole pop video posted above on 1 battery and that was a 8 hrs shoot

I do turn off the camera when its not being used

I was quite amazed ...... if that was my hacked gh2 I would have been on 3 batteries that day!!

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Oh... and btw .... you see how finally lenses and cameras are finding a new relation ... with cameras becoming one day what I thought all the time: Throw-away sensor boxes... ;-)

 

GM1 + Sigma 170 - 500
big_GM1_20_2B_20SIGMA170-500_20SMALL.jpg

 

Heh, that looks both funny and cool at the same time. :)

 

Speaking of rigging and attaching this little thing to dSLR lenses, have you (or anyone else who's got the GM1 already) tested the GM1 with the Swivi Universal LCD Viewfinder or something similar?

 

What I'm curious about is whether or not you can actually attach one, and still have enough room to use the tiny buttons nearest to the edge of the screen. The gap between the screen and the buttons look rather narrow, and the Swivi on particular is apparently not the smallest of the LCD viewfinders. Apparently the ones that have to be glued around the LCD would have the same issue, or do they?

How about the bottom plate, is the GM1 body actually a bit too narrow to attach a Swivi or a Zacuto viewfinder? 

 

If it is indeed feasible to use the Swivi, I'm almost giggling at the thought of having an orange/silver GM1 with a Swivi and a big FF lens with the Metabones adapter attached to a simple flash bracket along with a mic & recorder, and then shooting a professional wedding gig with it... Seeing uncle Bob's face would be a priceless bonus. :)

 

Anyway, if any of the GM1 owners have successfully rigged theirs with any such viewfinder and the other usual suspects, please feel free to comment and if possible, show photos. Surely some of you have already rigged yours, right?

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I was very happy to see this review as I had already ordered a GM1 last week! I was also within a day of ordering the regular Nikon G-->M43 Speedbooster when the Black Magic-specific models were announced. As I have a BMPCC as well, I am now on the fence regarding which Speedbooster model to get. The advantages of the BMPCC model seem significant enough to just get one to use on that camera as I was really planning on carrying the GM1 for everyday life stills and just spontaneous or less elaborate video work (so portability is key).

 

I'm wondering if Andrew or anyone else who has now used both models might have some advice: would I be wiser to have a Speedbooster that works on both cameras instead? Alternately, would purchasing both models be overkill? As I imagine I'm not the only one pondering this I thought I'd ask.

 

Thanks in advance for your thoughts...

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