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Blackmagic Pocket 4K/6K vs Panasonic S1 V-LOG

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Yes, the S1 can output  4K 60p (in aps-c crop) 10-bit 4:2:2 to an HDMI recorder.

The S1 has some nice features when paired with the native Lumix 24-105 lens, but it has some drawbacks too, particularly on a gimbal.

The native lenses are pretty expensive and pretty big and heavy. I use the S1 and 24-105 f/4 on my Weebill S and it is a bit hard for me to keep under control.

The 24-105 is so big that you have to slide the whole rig back real far on the weebill s  and that can limit how far up you can tilt the screen (I tend to shoot close to waist level on a gimbal, so it might be less of a bother to others who hold the camera closer to eye level).

Oh, and that is with the 24-105 at the 24mm end. If you zoom in, then the barrel extends a LOT and you will have to rebalance and move the camera further back on the gimbal, if that is even possible.

The S1 has two zebra memory positions, but unlike the S1H, you can't show BOTH zebras at the same time. 

On the other hand, some good things are that:

The 25-105 is about as parfocal as can be, as far as I can tell and have seen on the internets

The 24-105 has minimal focus breathing.

While we all know about Panasonic DFD autofcus, doing a focus pull using the touch screen is REALLY smooth. It isn't fast, but it very gently eases in to the new focus point. It probably eases out from the first focus point, too. Yes, it is far slower than my Sony cameras, but it is much, much smoother and is pretty similar to a really good manual focus pull. (Much better than I can do manually.)

And speaking of manual focus pulls, the S1 allows you to set the 24-105 to a linear focus response when turning the focus ring (so much better than the typical focus by wire response), and...

You can adjust the amount of degrees of rotation in the focus ring from minimum focus distance to infinity. I think you can have a minimum of 90-degrees and a max of at least 360-degrees. There is a setting that says "Maximum" but got no clue what that means.

The other good news is that the Sigma MC-21 seems to work pretty well with a lot of Canon glass (at least for AF-S, there is no AF-C at this time with the SA-21 adapter and ANY lens, either sigma or canon), and your typical manual vintage FF lenses work well on the S1. 

That's a good thing because there isn't a whole lot of L Mount glass available now. For example, the only native 50mm lens is an f/1.4 costs around $2,300 and there isn't anything on any lens roadmap for a native 50mm f/1.8 for a couple hundred dollars. There is an 85mm f/1.8 on Panasonic's lens roadmap, but I wouldn't be surprised if it is big, heavy and expensive.

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I would say that price, codec and lens selection is a huge plus for the Pocket 4K. You can put a lot of adapted lenses, use all the available M43 glasses, codec selection is big. In contrast the S1

Currently working on Project with S1 the colors and ibis is just bless some footage here ( Wip)   this was shot on S1 with 24-105 f/4 with ND   Now imagine for sec this camera

Why is anybody bothering with the Pocket cameras when there is an image this good from the Panasonic S1 out there? I just don't get it. There are a lot of apologists out there for Blackmagic

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27 minutes ago, Mckinise said:

Both the Pocket Cinema Cameras and S1H have true 24.0 fps and Cinema 4k, but does the S1 have it before or AFTER the Filmmaker upgrade key?

Just to clarify, the S1 (with the film makers upgrade) shoots at 23.976 fps, as opposed to "true 24.0 fps."

I would assume that before the upgrade it still shot at 23.976 fps.

Resolution is 3840 X 2160, so it is UHD and not DCI 4K.

At least, that is as far as I can tell. The S1 is VERY complex (for me) and some of the settings seem to affect / interact with other settings. So maybe there is a way to get DCI 4K and true 24.0fps that I am not familiar with yet.

This is for the S1. I don't know what the S1H does.

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22 minutes ago, BTM_Pix said:

Is it still cropped with the DMW-SFU2 upgrade ?

Yes, as of this writing, it is still cropped.

Don't know if further on down the road, with any more firmware updates, it will offer full frame readout or not.

I know a few other S1 owners and they have said that they find there is a bit too much noise in VLOG to use 4K 60p so they tend to use HLG instead if shooting 4K 60p. I would assume that is due to the crop instead of using 6K downsampled in camera to 4K, which is what a full frame readout would give.

I don't want to swear by it since I don't own one, but I believe the 4K 60p in the S1H is cropped as well.

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On 1/25/2020 at 8:19 AM, Mark Romero 2 said:

I know a few other S1 owners and they have said that they find there is a bit too much noise in VLOG to use 4K 60p so they tend to use HLG instead if shooting 4K 60p. I would assume that is due to the crop instead of using 6K downsampled in camera to 4K, which is what a full frame readout would give.

Pretty confident you can't record 4k60p in HLG internally. that can only be done over hdmi unfortunately.

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11 minutes ago, Rinad Amir said:

Correction 1080p 4:2:2 10bit 100mbs

Yeah, thanks for pointing that out.

if you go into the full menu it shows more details about the codec.

I have it set up in the quick menu (Q) and it shows less details. 

For anyone who might be interested, if you are in the menu system and click the DISP button, it gives a little pop-up blurb that describes the settings in a bit of detail. Can be helpful for those who aren't really sure what the settings do.

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Well, IMO, in the Panasonic S1/S1H cameras we're looking at a fantastic pair of offerings. The in-camera 10 bit 422, the stabilization--fantastic, the number of buttons and how they can be customized is just wonderful---I have my S1 set up with with the N/E/S/W and center push of the joy stick all programmed with my most used functions---and that gives me almost total control of the image I'm shooting, all located instantly below my right thumb and index finger. It makes me able to play the S1 like Heifitz played his Guarnerius. (For those culturally challenged, you can look it up.) 

If that weren't enough, the image is  just beautiful, in both FF and APS-C. And to put the cherry on the  top the XLR unit of the GH5 gives me great in-studio audio--in camera! 

The lens selection is endless--at least for someone like me who uses third party, non-electronic lenses 95% of the time.

Yes, there are some codecs the BMPCC has the S1 doesn't have. But, by comparison, the usability and versatility of the S1 is over the top better. 

There are limited choices in the S1 compared to the S1H. But in my own shooting I never need many of those features---with the exception of C4k. I'd really like that added to the S1.

But sanity should prevail, and when any of us consider all the features and benefits (FAB) a given camera provides, each of us has to ask ourselves---how beneficial TO US are many of those benefits we see on paper--how much will we use them--if at all? Personally, I have no interest in shooting anamorphic--or 6k, and seldom if ever need 400 MBPS. If I were to be honest, most of what I do is well provided by a high bit rate 422 1080p--4k is nice, but not always totally necessary. Again, being honest, when I consider 4k from a cost/benefit perspective, it doesn't always come out on the long end.

IMO, I think it's wise when we find ourselves being dazzled by specs on paper to take a step back and remind ourselves that there is often not a small amount of cognitive dissonance between what we see on paper and the actual performance and results we get in reality. It's not always easy to quantify how valuable usability in performance is---but we know it when we see and experience it. And it's worth its weight in gold. 

If that were not true, if paper and performance always corresponded, I would never have purchased the EOS R. But within its not-so-obvious limitations it's killer good, with beautiful IQ and color. This seems to be Canon's consistent MO: unimpressive on paper, but incomparable in ease of use, and dependably delivering a great end result.--I say this having no love for that company and how they mistreat their loyal customer base.

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On 1/23/2020 at 3:58 PM, Andrew Reid said:


Blackmagic have done a lot of great things, Resolve, the codec side, but the S1 and S1H have a flat out better image. It's that simple. And why anybody would not want the other things offered like IBIS and EVF, also baffles me.

Shootout coming soon.

Look forward to seeing that, Andrew.

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On 1/23/2020 at 4:58 PM, Andrew Reid said:

Why is anybody bothering with the Pocket cameras


On 1/23/2020 at 4:58 PM, Andrew Reid said:

There are a lot of apologists out there for Blackmagic cameras


On 1/23/2020 at 4:58 PM, Andrew Reid said:

but the S1 and S1H have a flat out better image.

Shots fired.

I said it before, but I think the S1H is going to be a cult favorite, especially if Panasonic continues to improve it through firmware upgrades. It would have been a run away success if they fixed the damn autofocus once and for all.

But I’m kinda exhausted with all the new stuff. I’m ignoring all the shiny new toys this year and instead diverting that excitement and energy into creating.

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5 hours ago, Dustin said:

Nice video on the S1H:


Thanks for posting.

Personally, the S1H looks "best" on my monitor. Maybe a tad too much magenta in the skintones for my taste, but I think it could easily be tamed. In general, I like just a VERY slight skew toward magenta in the blues, which the S1H seems to have.

Of course, this is completely subjective.

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