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Panasonic S5 User Experience


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Binned the S1R and pushed the button on a used S1H!

It doesn't specify, but with this particular dealer it's usually 'open box' kit when it's sold 'like new'.

It's not the best time for me to be buying kit ideally as my entire wedding season is still in question, but at the same time, I have a number of commercial projects and styled venue shoots to do over the next few months.

I also would like to spend time getting familiar with using my entire kit as I intend to use it for at least the next >4 years.

I could at a pinch, use just the S5, but after nearly 6 months of wrestling with my 'perfect' minimalist lineup of bodies and lens combos, I have settled on:

S1H with the Sigma 28-70mm f2.8 as a my video-centric workhorse, principally because a lot of my long work days are in high temperatures and some ceremonies and some speeches can go on for a bit so the unlimited recording is a bonus.

I hate flippy screens but the S1H is perfect in that it can just be used as a tilt.

The Sig 28-70 keeps the overall size & weight down but still a flexible focal range that is perfect for my needs; approx 42-105mm as I shoot 4k 50p.

The S5 is going to get a battery grip to add more continuous battery life, but mainly to balance out the 24-105mm f4.

I'm not really a zoom kind of person, so anticipate using the Sig as a 42 or 105mm and with the Panny lens, FF as a 24 or 105mm to give me the same focal length for stills and video at the long end which I work a lot with.

F4 is not my ideal, but then it's equivalent to the Fuji f2.8 that has been my previous workhorse so...

The Panny 85mm f1.8 remains as an option lens for video, - purely back of church or low-light outdoor speeches, because in APSC mode, it's like a 130mm.

The Panny 20-60mm kit lens remains also, purely as a 20mm wide angle for stills and it's my hiking lens on the S5.

The Sigma 45mm f2.8 I'm not sure. I love this lens but have next to zero use for it. I think I'll probably sell it and replace it with another option lens which will be the Sigma 65mm f2 for church and low-light speeches, I have a 100mm equiv, still f2 light gathering instead of the F4 zoom.

2 bodies, 2 workhorse zooms, 1 option zoom, 2 option primes. Sony ZV1 as a backup ceremony & speeches video unit. That's as minimalist as I can go and still cover all my bases and within a certain budget!

Ideally, Panny will pop out a 47mp version of the S5, ie, an S5R as there are times when the hi res mode doesn't work for me but I want more than 24mp.

Otherwise, I'm sorted and look forward to shooting more than the last miserable 6 months!

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There is an R5/R6 user experience thread so I figured it was safe to start a Panasonic S5 user experience thread.  I've only shot with it for a few hours, mostly setting up (and learning) the menus an

I agree with @zerocool22 the S5 and S1H have identical sensors, LOG profiles, etc. I highly doubt in most scenarios you would be able to tell the difference. I think the reason you think the S1H is a

Well here's my first use of the S5. Neutral profile, no tweaks to any in camera settings, SOOC, 4k 50p shot in shutter priority 1/100 with the 20-60mm kit lens. Clips imported into Premiere

Posted Images

It's a lot to think about! I've just seen the S5 with the 20-60 is 2169€ here and there's a 300€ cash back. That's very tempting.  After discounting tax and cash back we are talking 1600€!

I'm the opposite to you and shoot mainly on the wide end (10-25 f1.7 hardly comes off my GH5). I also shoot a lot of 50p (weddings) and I'm not sure how that would work on a S5. I was thinking a 20-60 and the sigma 28-70 would do. maybe a 20 or 24 1.8 in the future (aprox 35mm with apsc). I have no problem shooting a whole wedding on a 35mm (video). Just don't see a reasonably priced lens that could do that.

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Well if you only shot the wide end of the 20-60 @ 50p it’s going to be a 30mm equivalent FOV and at f3.5.

For me, it’s about as wide as I would ever go and at f3.5 isn’t too bad even in low light.

I’m really enjoying the 28-70, but on the job I did last week (lockdown 3 starts here today for the next month...) but I used it stills only on the S5.

For video, I went Sigma 45mm f2.8 on the S1H and it was much better than I thought it would be, which bodes well for the 65mm f2.

There are a few options to go wide(r) native L Mount or adapted but the 23mm f1.8 should be coming soon that is; compact, light, reasonable price, fastest AF and decent aperture?

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OK I just tried the panasonic lumix tether app, which works Ok. But I connect the S5 with a usb-c cable to my windows laptop, I choose tether on the s5. And then it gives this warning "USB device is connected, please turn off device while charging" everytime I use the thether software. Should I just ignore this?

Also while the wallplug icon above the battery appeared it does not seem to charge the battery in the camera (as after a few minutes the battery was drained and the camera shut itself down).

Anybody got any experience with this?

 

Thanks!

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New here and just purchased an S5 - very interesting discussion. Really liking the camera. I'm not a pro but have quite a bit of experience with HD video. Not got top end gear so shooting in 25p, UHD 4k, 8-bit. Though the 1080p looked pretty good too (was stunned by the comment earlier that 1080p and anything 8 bit, including 4K, is 'garbage' - what are people on?). 

Was wondering about some more basic stuff from users who have had more time with it: what ISO range and aperture do you find most efficacious for 'normal outdoor shooting? This is the best quality camera I have owned personally and with other cameras I always avoided cranking up the ISO (grain) and closing down the aperture too much (defraction) and so always use an ND filter as much of what I shoot is outdoors. I bought a couple of nice NDs for the S5 - 3 and 6 stop (Breakthrough). If I use the 6 stop, even with the aperture wide open, I have up the ISO a bit (but not that much), whereas with the 3 stop I find I have to close the aperture to 6 or more and leave the ISO on 100. But then the aperture goes up to 20 I am not used to this range or high quality ISO.

Thoughts / experiences?

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No ND’s here, fixed or variable. I own one but don’t use it.

Aperture wide open unless I specifically want a less shallow DOF. All my lenses are f2, f2.8 or f3.5.

ISO as low as poss, so 100 most of the time.

My exposure variable is controlled manually by thumbing the shutter speed. Anything from min 1/100th to 1/8000th, stills or video. I ignore the 180 degree shutter rule willfully.

I use a combination of histogram and my own eyes for exposure, ie, if it looks right, it is right and any minor adjustments can be made in post, but as there are at least 3-4 stops possible in either direction, it’s no big deal. Unless you blow the highlights, so that is my conscious priority, ie, not to do so.

S5 and S1H combo, though the S1H is dedicated to video capture and the S5 hybrid, but more stills oriented now I also have the S1H.

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On 4/9/2021 at 12:52 PM, Geoffrey said:

New here and just purchased an S5 - very interesting discussion. Really liking the camera. I'm not a pro but have quite a bit of experience with HD video. Not got top end gear so shooting in 25p, UHD 4k, 8-bit. Though the 1080p looked pretty good too (was stunned by the comment earlier that 1080p and anything 8 bit, including 4K, is 'garbage' - what are people on?). 

Was wondering about some more basic stuff from users who have had more time with it: what ISO range and aperture do you find most efficacious for 'normal outdoor shooting? This is the best quality camera I have owned personally and with other cameras I always avoided cranking up the ISO (grain) and closing down the aperture too much (defraction) and so always use an ND filter as much of what I shoot is outdoors. I bought a couple of nice NDs for the S5 - 3 and 6 stop (Breakthrough). If I use the 6 stop, even with the aperture wide open, I have up the ISO a bit (but not that much), whereas with the 3 stop I find I have to close the aperture to 6 or more and leave the ISO on 100. But then the aperture goes up to 20 I am not used to this range or high quality ISO.

Thoughts / experiences?

Hi and Welcome.

I am most familiar with shooting in V-LOG on the S5 (and S1 cameras).

They have dual native ISO. You should be able to look for this setting. It may not be too helpful with your ND filter situation, but it might be.

Generally, from what I have seen, you want to shoot at the native ISO for that profile, or go maybe two stops past it, then go to the High gain ISO

In V-LOG terms (as that is what I am most familiar with) shoot at ISO 640, on up to about 1600. After that, shoot at the High gain ISO of 4000 (and stop down the aperture).

I shoot outdoor in V-LOG quite a bit but normally have to stop down to about f/8 or f/11 when I use my 3-stop hoya ND filter (I am not real thrilled with that filter... distinct blue / magenta color shift).

If you don't want to shoot in V-LOG outdoors, you can shoot in HLG. However, I think it uses the h.265 (hevc) codec and some computers really struggle with it.

But probably the easiest way is to shoot outdoors with Flat picture profile and the saturation, contrast and sharpness turned down if you want to lightly grade in post.

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32 minutes ago, Mark Romero 2 said:

Hi and Welcome.

I am most familiar with shooting in V-LOG on the S5 (and S1 cameras).

They have dual native ISO. You should be able to look for this setting. It may not be too helpful with your ND filter situation, but it might be.

Generally, from what I have seen, you want to shoot at the native ISO for that profile, or go maybe two stops past it, then go to the High gain ISO

In V-LOG terms (as that is what I am most familiar with) shoot at ISO 640, on up to about 1600. After that, shoot at the High gain ISO of 4000 (and stop down the aperture).

I shoot outdoor in V-LOG quite a bit but normally have to stop down to about f/8 or f/11 when I use my 3-stop hoya ND filter (I am not real thrilled with that filter... distinct blue / magenta color shift).

If you don't want to shoot in V-LOG outdoors, you can shoot in HLG. However, I think it uses the h.265 (hevc) codec and some computers really struggle with it.

But probably the easiest way is to shoot outdoors with Flat picture profile and the saturation, contrast and sharpness turned down if you want to lightly grade in post.

You can shoot in HLG at 10 bit H264 as well. 

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Some good advice here many thanks, with stuff leading me into territory of where I am mostly ignorant. But that is good as I will learn.

Mr SMW - using shutter to control the light is a way to go but as it tends to start messing up movement (and have ruined a shoot in the past doing this), I tend to be wary of that approach but I should not neglect it - I have got into the habit of trying to leave the shutter speed double the frame rate for the most natural movement (so 50 at 25p).

Regarding the colour profiles this is where I need to learn. I have looked at V-Log but there are two problems for me - when setting up the shot, the visual feedback is so poor and washed out  that I struggle to get excited about what I am seeing plus doing so much in post is beyond my skill set at present (though I guess if I had a got to colour profile it could be quick and simple?). Dual native ISO is not something I have come across / understand so will have to look it up. I also looked at HLG but I worry about 10-bit files on the modest Mac laptop I have to use for everything at the moment (H265 would add to that problem). I also don't really know what HLG is! At the moment I have been using Like709 which is fairly flat but I will try Flat as Mark suggests. Regarding sharpness - the camera is sharp isn't it - is it generally thought the profiles should all have sharpness dialled down a bit?

I tried a high contrast situation the other day in some woods on a brightish but cloudy day (that kind of milky grey-white sky) pointing  the camera out from the darkish woods to the open sky - always tough and I have a pet hate of blown out skies so used a 3-stop filter and closed the aperture down a lot (I just use the 20-60 kit lens at the moment) - the shot looked nice except for a noticeable white halo around some of the twigs against the sky which looked liked an issue with closing the aperture down too much - it is this kind of situation that is a good test for optimum settings and seeking to get a handle on this.

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1 hour ago, Geoffrey said:

Some good advice here many thanks, with stuff leading me into territory of where I am mostly ignorant. But that is good as I will learn.

Mr SMW - using shutter to control the light is a way to go but as it tends to start messing up movement (and have ruined a shoot in the past doing this), I tend to be wary of that approach but I should not neglect it - I have got into the habit of trying to leave the shutter speed double the frame rate for the most natural movement (so 50 at 25p).

Regarding the colour profiles this is where I need to learn. I have looked at V-Log but there are two problems for me - when setting up the shot, the visual feedback is so poor and washed out  that I struggle to get excited about what I am seeing plus doing so much in post is beyond my skill set at present (though I guess if I had a got to colour profile it could be quick and simple?). Dual native ISO is not something I have come across / understand so will have to look it up. I also looked at HLG but I worry about 10-bit files on the modest Mac laptop I have to use for everything at the moment (H265 would add to that problem). I also don't really know what HLG is! At the moment I have been using Like709 which is fairly flat but I will try Flat as Mark suggests. Regarding sharpness - the camera is sharp isn't it - is it generally thought the profiles should all have sharpness dialled down a bit?

I tried a high contrast situation the other day in some woods on a brightish but cloudy day (that kind of milky grey-white sky) pointing  the camera out from the darkish woods to the open sky - always tough and I have a pet hate of blown out skies so used a 3-stop filter and closed the aperture down a lot (I just use the 20-60 kit lens at the moment) - the shot looked nice except for a noticeable white halo around some of the twigs against the sky which looked liked an issue with closing the aperture down too much - it is this kind of situation that is a good test for optimum settings and seeking to get a handle on this.

For stills, I don't let the shutter go any slower than 1/250th unless the subject is very static.

For video, 90%+ of what I do ends up being 50% reduced in speed and I see no problems shooting 10x the 180 degree shutter rule.

Vlog, you just need to use an in camera viewing LUT, either a camera standard one or an imported one. I use the one from Gamut rather than Panasonic's because it's better. But then I don't shoot Vlog but a tweaked version of the Natural profile. Each to their own and all that but IMO either shoot Vlog if you wish to grade or a non-flat profile if you don't because otherwise you may as well shoot Vlog and get a better result!

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5 hours ago, omega1978 said:

HLG is only 72 mbps HEVC 4.2.0 in MP4 on S1..

Not on mine lol, I literally have it here in my hands. In HEVC MP4 you can only shoot HLG, no other color profiles. In regular 10 bit 422 H264 you can shoot HLG or VLOG or any color profile. 

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1 hour ago, MrSMW said:

For stills, I don't let the shutter go any slower than 1/250th unless the subject is very static.

For video, 90%+ of what I do ends up being 50% reduced in speed and I see no problems shooting 10x the 180 degree shutter rule.

Vlog, you just need to use an in camera viewing LUT, either a camera standard one or an imported one. I use the one from Gamut rather than Panasonic's because it's better. But then I don't shoot Vlog but a tweaked version of the Natural profile. Each to their own and all that but IMO either shoot Vlog if you wish to grade or a non-flat profile if you don't because otherwise you may as well shoot Vlog and get a better result!

Ah right. Will look into the camera viewing LUT - didn't realise you could do this. In general though my aim (and principle) is to get the image I want when shooting it so that only minor tweaks are needed later. I am also looking for a transparent 'natural' image most of the time as a I work in documentary. Interesting point about flat / non-flat but I thought the whole point about semi-flat profiles is that they give you enough leeway for some effective tweaking without having to do too much, hence my use of Like 709 that the manual suggests is just what it is for.

Clearly I have to do a lot more test shoots!

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1 hour ago, Geoffrey said:

Ah right. Will look into the camera viewing LUT - didn't realise you could do this. In general though my aim (and principle) is to get the image I want when shooting it so that only minor tweaks are needed later. I am also looking for a transparent 'natural' image most of the time as a I work in documentary. Interesting point about flat / non-flat but I thought the whole point about semi-flat profiles is that they give you enough leeway for some effective tweaking without having to do too much, hence my use of Like 709 that the manual suggests is just what it is for.

Clearly I have to do a lot more test shoots!

The issue with Vlog viewing LUTs is they look shitty on the S1. Due to lack of processing power the luts look weird and show a lot of artifacts that aren't actually there. Not a good representation of what you'll actually be getting. I think an external monitor can solve this issue as it takes care of the processing. 

I always rely on the cameras light meter. I usually expose highlights to +3 if I am trying to retain them as the S1 can recover highlights slightly past 3 stops over exposed. 

Like 709 doesn't hold highlights well but does good with shadows. I prefer Vlog as I prefer the look I can get with certain LUTs in post. 

I do get you on using REC709 profiles rather than log. It's really satisfying to see that nice contrasty image on the monitor. I just don't like the Pana color profiles enough to use them. When I had a Fuji I would shoot in all the color profiles a lot for video. 

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31 minutes ago, TomTheDP said:

The issue with Vlog viewing LUTs is they look shitty on the S1. Due to lack of processing power the luts look weird and show a lot of artifacts that aren't actually there. Not a good representation of what you'll actually be getting. I think an external monitor can solve this issue as it takes care of the processing. 

I always rely on the cameras light meter. I usually expose highlights to +3 if I am trying to retain them as the S1 can recover highlights slightly past 3 stops over exposed. 

Like 709 doesn't hold highlights well but does good with shadows. I prefer Vlog as I prefer the look I can get with certain LUTs in post. 

I do get you on using REC709 profiles rather than log. It's really satisfying to see that nice contrasty image on the monitor. I just don't like the Pana color profiles enough to use them. When I had a Fuji I would shoot in all the color profiles a lot for video. 

Thank you this is really useful info. I noticed that Like 709 doesn't hold the highlights that well so maybe I need to use a different profile - Flat or Natural I guess. The ability of the camera to recover highlights up to +3 on the meter is really handy to know! I tend to use the zebras but maybe they are too misleading and I have never really got what a sensible percentage is to use.

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Ok, its official....the XLR module combined with the S5 is a finicky setup. I had a shoot today, very important to nail the audio and the XLR module just wouldn't turn on. The talent was already mic'd up, I ran an XLR cable because I didn't want to fiddle with wireless in addition to the XLR module....and it took a good 5-10min of fiddling to get the XLR module to even turn on.  I never had these problems with the GH5.

I double checked my connection in the hotshoe, the XLR cables, the XLR jack for the mic....absolutely nothing. I then unplugged the XLR cable from the XLR module...and it turned on immediately. I turned off the camera, plugged back in the cable, turned on the camera....XLR module dead again. I then toggled the phantom power switch on the module to off and the module turned on. I turned it back to +48V and it stayed on. It turned off one more time, I toggled the phantom power switch and it then stayed on for the rest of the interview.

This is not good, I just don't have that kind of time on set to fiddle with an XLR module. 

AF is starting to bug me too. During the same shoot I couldn't get it to focus on even large items like cars and houses. I had to MF one of the scenes because it simply would not focus on the car at all. This of course is with the EF mount adapter and a Canon 24mm lens so I can't entirely blame the S5 in this situation; but my perfect little setup is starting to get quirky which is not good when I need reliability.

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