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Shooting with a 4K pocket camera - the exceptional Panasonic LX100


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Song 'Her' from the EP collection 'The Mud Here Has Memories' by Bunny Suit. Copyright owned by Universal Music Publishing. Filmed by Andrew Reid.  Featuring guest vocals from Aurora Aksnes. Poster frame shows close-up resolving power of the LX100 at 11mm F1.7 in 4K mode.

The first retro-styled camera from Panasonic is the first ever compact to shoot 4K video from a large sensor. The first compact that I would call "exceptional" in almost every respect.

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Another constructive forum post ehh

The fact you can buy an imaging device for $900 that trumps most gear film making masters from the 70's and 60's would have loved to have is incredible. Look, if you can't do creative stuff with a

If the size of LX100 doesn't look impressing for the customer smile emoticon FOTGA rig, Zoom H4N, RODE stereo mic, RAM mount, LCD-V3, Opteka 58mm extention tube. There is no need for a belt to attach

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Great write-up!

 

“A camera will not make you shoot better images†– I’ve heard it said maybe 10 times maybe more, but it isn’t true. The LX100 has allowed me to shoot better images because unlike a large camera it’s always there. I can throw it in my pocket then bring it out at any moment during the shoot when I need an extra angle. I can rig it pretty much anywhere or just use it handheld.

 

I couldn't agree more! To me that's the essence of this camera.

 

I’ve assigned 4K Photo Mode to a function button so I can toggle it on and off like a movie mode. When it is enabled you have the option of starting movie recording with the main shutter button too, which is more conveniently positioned than the video record button.

 

Great tip, thanks! Hadn't thought of that!

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Great looking video there Andrew!

 

This makes me wonder about what I heard SONY said about the A7s, that it was not possible to impliment a version of even 4:2:0 4k internally without overheating.  But could they have engineered internal 4k in APC mode?  God knows Im no engineer but cameras like this make me wonder. 

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I think it is great that Panasonic is bringing this to the consumers, but why does it seem that a simple mic or headphone jack / controls cost an extra $1000+.  The seems like such universal commodity items to include on a camera that they should be available on the LX100. Its not even on the FZ1000. The only way to get it is on the GH4, but then you need to buy a lens as well.  i wish there was something in between.

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Adding jacks and circuits adds space. Also there is of course the interest of panasonic to somewhat protect the gh4. I think before judging that too harshly, the gh4 is an incredibly affordable pro solution for video, and for the money what you get with lx100 and fz1000 is an incredible steal. Look at what canon, Nikon and Sony provides to consumers in terms of features and quality vs price on the video front.

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Thanks for posting this, Andrew. IF I didn't already have an RX100 III, I would probably opt for this camera. In fact, I had very seriously considered it as a "B" camera in a (VERY light-weight) traveling rig......but although the sensor is bigger than the 1" sensor in the RX100, as you point out, the actual space used on the sensor by the image circle is not the full 4/3. So, in effect, the DOF will be similar to the RX100, 4k video aside. I was impressed by level of detail you are able to get in the video (seeing the guitarists' eyelashes, for example), even if the cut to the guitarist and violinists playing in front of the abandoned drumset did have serious continuity issues..... :huh:

 

After much hand-wringing, I ended up buying a used RX1 online, even with the relatively primitive video capability if offers. Why? Because it offers a shallow DOF I could never achieve in a comparably-sized compact camera, and it fills a niche in my travel kit that another (relatively) smaller sensored-camera can not. Having said that, it is pretty amazing the shallower DOF you were able to get in the video.

 

Still, quite an achievement for Panasonic; my hat is off to them. I would probably have gotten one if they had caught me a little earlier. I might end up going there, still. Hard to see how you could go wrong with this camera, im Allgemeinen.....

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I like the following on the LX100 vs my gh3:

-Focus Peaking

-Auto Iso in Manual mode (as Vesku mentioned)

-The dials fit me better with real dials for shutter, exposure, aperture. I would probably reconfigure the focus/control ring on the lens to do Iso mostly

-I like the fact that using shutter and aperture dials determines the mode it is in, rather than having a dedicated mode dial

 

Stupid question, but does the exposure dial in manual mode in reality adjust iso, or doesn't it do anything?

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The video looks fantastic..no quibbles there.  But the stills I've seen posted look so very flat & surprisingly soft.  I'm hoping raw files look better, because the jpegs are lacking...at least to my eye.

 

I badly want this camera but it has to take good quality stills to be a winner.  I'm hesitating until I see some good work with this.

 

Can anyone point me to exceptional still shots?

 

Thanks.

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No built-in ND filter and no filter thread on the lens. Hmm...

 

I'm also interested in how the overheating of the sensor is handled by the camera. I assume that it starts from 15 minutes and counts down to 0, but what happens if you do a 5 minute clip and then start a new recording? Does it then start from 10 minutes or 15 minutes? What kind of warning does it give when it starts to overheat?

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