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Most underrated cameras?


Andrew Reid
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23 minutes ago, stephen said:

True if you use ONLY Resolve color space transform from V-Log to Rec709. Magenta cast is easy to correct. You can do it once then save it and apply it on all clips. Or use corrective LUTs. Leeming Luts  is one good option. In his review of Panasonic S1, Gerald Undone showed that once corrective LUT is applied, colors on vector scope match. See at 12:59

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CphwVNgX32s

Here is another solution:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fWzJG-822Iw

Having in mind you can shoot RAW with Panasonic S1 and adjust the colors as you wish, that's not a camera limitation but  your personal preference.

Like Blackmagic cameras and own one. What Panasonic S1 have and  BMPCC 4K (and even 6K) doesn't is full frame sensor. Not because am full frame or bokeh fanatic, S35 is more than enough for me. But because of lenses. Most lenses in photography before digital era are  Leica 35mm format (full frame). It's nice to use the lens at it's focal length as it was designed to be used and not with a crop factor. For example Helios 44M is 58mm in full frame land at a focal length close to what we call normal. In S35 it is a telephoto lens. And so on. Full frame camera makes my life easier when shooting with vintage and modern FF lenses, specially at the wide end. With speed boosters you can close to FF on Blackmagic but not exactly match. Still a small  problem. Also with FF you build a lens collection once and never worry again when new cameras arrive.

Yeah if shooting with vintage glass its a great budget option. There aren't many super wide lenses for 35mm film cameras as you don't need it, but with APSC 24mm doesn't quite cut it on the wide end. 

For cinema lenses you have tons of options as S35 has been the standard for most of film history, not that any of us can afford a S35 cine lens haha. 

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I'm not sure that it deserves to be mentioned along side these cameras but the GX85 is really, really underrated, especially for its price on the used market. 

There are a lot of reasons not to get one but boy do I love mine. It doesn't have great auto focus in video and it lacks a mic input, but I find myself grabbing it instead of my G85 and GH5. The stabilization is really good... Not G85 or GH5 good but close. It's great to take into areas where larger cameras aren't allowed and lately I've just enjoyed bringing it with me on trips with the 14mm f2.5 or the 20mm f1.7. For whatever reason I find myself shooting more photos / video for fun, like I did when I first got a video or stills camera. As nice as it is to have a phone that can do decent photos and videos it just isn't the same... I don't get the same joy as I get using the GX85. I really didn't expect to love this camera as much as I have. 

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1 hour ago, newfoundmass said:

It's great to take into areas where larger cameras aren't allowed and lately I've just enjoyed bringing it with me on trips with the 14mm f2.5 or the 20mm f1.7. For whatever reason I find myself shooting more photos / video for fun, like I did when I first got a video or stills camera. As nice as it is to have a phone that can do decent photos and videos it just isn't the same... I don't get the same joy as I get using the GX85. I really didn't expect to love this camera as much as I have. 

I couldn't agree more about size and form-factor, and how smaller setups are more fun and, in a way, more spontaneous than larger more serious setups.

This is why, despite owning a BMMCC, I bought an OG BMPCC (the P2K!).  Paired with the 7.5/2 (giving a 22mm FOV) or 14/2.5 (giving a 40mm FOV) and the obligatory IR cut + vND + diffusion filter stack, it's a fun setup that still fits into the "tourist with camera - nothing to see here - move along" category.
Combined with the (much larger) 12-35/2.8 lens gives you great OIS and a 35-100mm FOV.  

Both combinations give a handheld setup that rivals the best cinema cameras that amateurs who haven't inherited could buy, even up until a handful of years ago.

Just for fun, here's a video from the OG BMPCC:

and even a full cine-sized rig is getting smaller and smaller these days if you want to rig it up "properly":

image.thumb.png.fdcc348805ab02b7e32392f3bcb030fb.png

(courtesy of Tommy Do on FB)

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5 hours ago, TomTheDP said:

For cinema lenses you have tons of options as S35 has been the standard for most of film history, not that any of us can afford a S35 cine lens haha. 

Digressing very slightly, I rewatched The Talented Mr Ripley last night.

Other than a skinny pre-Bourne Matt Damon, it hasn’t really dated other than in 2 areas.

The first is the titles etc. They were/are very much of their time.

The second thing was whilst it will have been shot with a cine lens, the quality of the grain/film stock was really noticeable and the night scenes almost laughable in how much they struggled to get any kind of useable light.

I’m just thinking along the lines of old camera with modern lens vs new camera with older lens.

I would take new camera with older lens every time and there are some really great modern, affordable (relatively) cine lenses with character. Sigma, Meike, Irix, Fuji et al.

I just think we are at that point now where there is still no single ‘perfect’ camera as there is at least one compromise with all of them, but what utterly fantastic photography and filmmaking tools do we have access to, in small packages, accessible and not at outrageous expense!

I couldn’t make use of a Cooke if you gifted it to me! (I’d sell it and buy an entire real world kit and go on holiday when such things are allowed again).

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6 hours ago, MrSMW said:

Digressing very slightly, I rewatched The Talented Mr Ripley last night.

Other than a skinny pre-Bourne Matt Damon, it hasn’t really dated other than in 2 areas.

The first is the titles etc. They were/are very much of their time.

The second thing was whilst it will have been shot with a cine lens, the quality of the grain/film stock was really noticeable and the night scenes almost laughable in how much they struggled to get any kind of useable light.

I’m just thinking along the lines of old camera with modern lens vs new camera with older lens.

I would take new camera with older lens every time and there are some really great modern, affordable (relatively) cine lenses with character. Sigma, Meike, Irix, Fuji et al.

I just think we are at that point now where there is still no single ‘perfect’ camera as there is at least one compromise with all of them, but what utterly fantastic photography and filmmaking tools do we have access to, in small packages, accessible and not at outrageous expense!

I couldn’t make use of a Cooke if you gifted it to me! (I’d sell it and buy an entire real world kit and go on holiday when such things are allowed again).

How good was the copy of the film? A lot of times compression destroys low light scenes that would probably have been beautiful otherwise. 

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32 minutes ago, TomTheDP said:

How good was the copy of the film? A lot of times compression destroys low light scenes that would probably have been beautiful otherwise. 

+1

For me it's 

any CAMERA that you can load or thread Kodak film in .. image combined with art..fantastic

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9 hours ago, MrSMW said:

I would take new camera with older lens every time

Just watched "No Sudden Moves" on HBO and that's pretty much the same sentiment they went with in that film.  Worked for me.  The shots were fun and weird.

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On 7/2/2021 at 11:42 AM, Dave Maze said:

couldn't agree more about the EM1X. I still use my EM1 mkii and mkiii every week. Don't see myself switching to anything anytime soon either. I really hope Olympus will have something great again soon to upgrade this. 

You, good sir, are solely responsible for me picking up a used E-M1 MK II about two weeks ago (despite the fact that I already have an S1, and S5, a Sony a6500, a6000, a5100 and a deceased a6300).

As for an upgrade, I just wish there was more flexibility in their video options in terms of having their wonderful C4K at 23.976fps (my understanding is it is at true 24fps, and not at 23.976fps), and C4K at 29.97fps. Not sure why the C4K is so much better than the UHD 4K either. 

 

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6 hours ago, TomTheDP said:

How good was the copy of the film? A lot of times compression destroys low light scenes that would probably have been beautiful otherwise. 

You would have to ask Netflix 😜

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On 7/3/2021 at 8:14 PM, HockeyFan12 said:

I still prefer the colors from the C100 (with external recorder)/C300/F3 (with external recorder) to most cameras today. Preferred the C300 Mk 1 to the Mk2 and F3 to F5, but later updates fixed the F5 imo.

I also like the grainier softer look of sub-4K cameras. 😕

But I think that's mostly personal taste...

Today P4k/P6k/S1/fp seem like winners.... but S1 does have a magenta cast on skin.

EVA1 I think is underrated and has better color, but a hard sell given how cheap an S1 or S5 is.

S1/S5/S1H does all have a magenta cast in VLOG to varying degree but if grading in Resolve for example then it's easy to dial out. Alexa LOG C has always a had a green cast for example so not only Panasonic that has a color cast. You can also easily fix it in camera by just adding 9 points of green (or a bit less depending on taste) to each kelvin setting and then save it in custom modes and then you don't have to dial it out in post. In the end I would say magenta cast is a non issue. Two biggest issues except autofocus is moire (on S1/S5) and rolling shutter in full frame mode. Both could be better but in general I am just blown away by how good a camera it is for the money.

 

 

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I feel that the Panasonic Varicam LT is one of the most underrated cinema cameras of the recent era. 

Just the timing and market was bad for it. 

Varicam S35 before it wasn't too successful (too expensive, and too heavy? And late-ish to market), thus even though the Varicam LT was 98% of the Varicam S35 but at a cheaper price and a lower size (addressing the two biggest issues of the Varicam S35), there wasn't the strong success of the Varicam S35 to build upon. 

Plus by the time Varicam LT arrived, it was already too late, ARRI had their claws solidly into the higher end market, and the Varicam LT was still too expensive when the likes of the Sony FS7 / Canon C300mk2 did the job well enough for the low/mid budget and were massively cheaper. The Varicam LT just couldn't find a large enough niche to be a huge hit with.

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9 hours ago, BjornT said:

S1/S5/S1H does all have a magenta cast in VLOG to varying degree but if grading in Resolve for example then it's easy to dial out. Alexa LOG C has always a had a green cast for example so not only Panasonic that has a color cast. You can also easily fix it in camera by just adding 9 points of green (or a bit less depending on taste) to each kelvin setting and then save it in custom modes and then you don't have to dial it out in post. In the end I would say magenta cast is a non issue. Two biggest issues except autofocus is moire (on S1/S5) and rolling shutter in full frame mode. Both could be better but in general I am just blown away by how good a camera it is for the money.

 

 

Have you tried shooting 6K HEVC instead of 4K on the S1? A bit more skew but there's less moire imo.

1 hour ago, IronFilm said:

I feel that the Panasonic Varicam LT is one of the most underrated cinema cameras of the recent era. 

Just the timing and market was bad for it. 

Varicam S35 before it wasn't too successful (too expensive, and too heavy? And late-ish to market), thus even though the Varicam LT was 98% of the Varicam S35 but at a cheaper price and a lower size (addressing the two biggest issues of the Varicam S35), there wasn't the strong success of the Varicam S35 to build upon. 

Plus by the time Varicam LT arrived, it was already too late, ARRI had their claws solidly into the higher end market, and the Varicam LT was still too expensive when the likes of the Sony FS7 / Canon C300mk2 did the job well enough for the low/mid budget and were massively cheaper. The Varicam LT just couldn't find a large enough niche to be a huge hit with.

Agreed re: the Varicam LT/35. It's what made me want an EVA1, which isn't as good, but still the best in class for its price imo. But the Varicam image I felt was way ahead of F55 at the time but it got much less use from what I've seen for whatever reason. 

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9 hours ago, IronFilm said:

I feel that the Panasonic Varicam LT is one of the most underrated cinema cameras of the recent era. 

Just the timing and market was bad for it. 

Varicam S35 before it wasn't too successful (too expensive, and too heavy? And late-ish to market), thus even though the Varicam LT was 98% of the Varicam S35 but at a cheaper price and a lower size (addressing the two biggest issues of the Varicam S35), there wasn't the strong success of the Varicam S35 to build upon. 

Plus by the time Varicam LT arrived, it was already too late, ARRI had their claws solidly into the higher end market, and the Varicam LT was still too expensive when the likes of the Sony FS7 / Canon C300mk2 did the job well enough for the low/mid budget and were massively cheaper. The Varicam LT just couldn't find a large enough niche to be a huge hit with.

Speaking of the VariCam, I’m honestly shocked that Panasonic haven’t announced a full frame/Large Format version of the camera yet.

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5 minutes ago, HockeyFan12 said:

Rolling shutter. But it's actually probably about the same, I've been using the 3:2 mode which has more.

It's a little worse in Open gate but probably not noticeable for most people. The 4k S35 mode is probably acceptable rolling shutter wise, though its still noticeable. The 1080p S35 mode is really fast, Alexa level, but the HD on the S1 is pretty sucky, especially in S35 mode. 

 

1 hour ago, Vintage Jimothy said:

Speaking of the VariCam, I’m honestly shocked that Panasonic haven’t announced a full frame/Large Format version of the camera yet.

I know, it would be an instant buy for me. Or more like an EVA2 as I feel the Panasonic S1H is too consumer of a sensor to put in a varicam, even though its incredibly good regardless. 

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On 7/4/2021 at 1:54 PM, Mark Romero 2 said:

You, good sir, are solely responsible for me picking up a used E-M1 MK II about two weeks ago (despite the fact that I already have an S1, and S5, a Sony a6500, a6000, a5100 and a deceased a6300).

As for an upgrade, I just wish there was more flexibility in their video options in terms of having their wonderful C4K at 23.976fps (my understanding is it is at true 24fps, and not at 23.976fps), and C4K at 29.97fps. Not sure why the C4K is so much better than the UHD 4K either. 

 

That's awesome man! They are great cameras but they aren't for everyone. You have to work with its limitations for sure. I really love using it for casual shooting and pictures of the kids... but when I was at Indy Mogul, we used it as the A cam for many of the shoots I was a part of!

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