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Panasonic FZ1000 review - the bargain 4K super-zoom


Andrew Reid

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One benefit of the faster cards, is that they play the 4k right off the card with ease. ;) And, they weren't that pricy either... so I'll likely just keep them. I verified they actually work fine in all of the gear I have. I figured the older stuff might not be compatible, but the UHS3 works fine in everything apparently. 

I don't really have much time left before I head out, so it'd sure be easier to keep what I've got. I've got a step-down ring for the polarizer that should be here tomorrow... and I've got an ND9 that I ordered in the wrong size by accident. So, I can just try out a couple combos before deciding what's going back.

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I've got ready access to the FZ1000 and have used it a few times.  My take: There are a lot of things to like - 4k, decent lens etc. Image stabilisation is superb. I never normally use autofocus, but

The Panasonic FZ1000 is a bridge camera, but is it a bridge that actually leads anywhere? Read my FZ1000 review to find out... http://www.eoshd.com/2014/11/panasonic-fz1000-review-bargain-4k-super-zo

About "“4K, so what, it isn’t all about resolutionâ€.  I'd extend your answer to point out that most 1080 is not really 1080 in actual resolution because of the space between pixels on a sensor an

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It's a good camera Matt. It's not as fussy as some of you like to get into. And it's not the best tool for critical work... but knowing that if I wanted to, I could rent a Shogun and get pretty much all I'd want with regard to record length, and range, out of a $900... is cool. I don't expect you to relate to that. I "get" what you and many othera here get off on... really, when it gets down to it... I'm going to just shut myself off right here about that. 

But, for those who're purely interested in the potential of doing great things with very little... even low-end consumer grade... then the information is exciting. Some of us aren't into tinkering with subtleties that other's are so obsessed with. 

So yeah, knowing that if I needed 4:2:2 and didn't have to bother with a bunch of lens changes, and had planned to not need anything beyond ISO800... and all I had to do was rent or borrow a Shogun for the day, etc. then yeah... that's something I might want to do and am thrilled to now know it's an option.

We've chatted a bit privately in the past, but you really don't know me. If you did, you'd know that I'd ultimately be much more proud of myself if I made a cinematic, artistic expression with the lowest end gear, for the lowest cost, inside the reach of anyone for the most part... rather then citing off a bunch of tech gear and grading tricks/expertise, etc. BS about how I bent this sensor and lens combination, effect, with this incredible lighting technique to bid my artistic will, etc. Nothing wrong with that, but If I could find a way to it with the least amount of gear, I'd say that's more impressive that having the state-of-the-art at your fingertips. 

Yeah, you could do it with an iPhone, but in many instances the image quality might be distracting. I'm looking for a way to get the viewer involved, without using tech as a crutch.

Does that answer your question?

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It's a good camera Matt. It's not as fussy as some of you like to get into. And it's not the best tool for critical work... but knowing that if I wanted to, I could rent a Shogun and get pretty much all I'd want with regard to record length, and range, out of a $900... is cool. I don't expect you to relate to that. I "get" what you and many othera here get off on... really, when it gets down to it... I'm going to just shut myself off right here about that. 

But, for those who're purely interested in the potential of doing great things with very little... even low-end consumer grade... then the information is exciting. Some of us aren't into tinkering with subtleties that other's are so obsessed with. 

So yeah, knowing that if I needed 4:2:2 and didn't have to bother with a bunch of lens changes, and had planned to not need anything beyond ISO800... and all I had to do was rent or borrow a Shogun for the day, etc. then yeah... that's something I might want to do and am thrilled to now know it's an option.

We've chatted a bit privately in the past, but you really don't know me. If you did, you'd know that I'd ultimately be much more proud of myself if I made a cinematic, artistic expression with the lowest end gear, for the lowest cost, inside the reach of anyone for the most part... rather then citing off a bunch of tech gear and grading tricks/expertise, etc. BS about how I bent this sensor and lens combination, effect, with this incredible lighting technique to bid my artistic will, etc. Nothing wrong with that, but If I could find a way to it with the least amount of gear, I'd say that's more impressive that having the state-of-the-art at your fingertips. 

Yeah, you could do it with an iPhone, but in many instances the image quality might be distracting. I'm looking for a way to get the viewer involved, without using tech as a crutch.

Does that answer your question?

​It was just a straightforward, innocent question Skip. No need to get so defensive. Jesus. I simply didn't understand what benefit a Shogun would give the FZ1000. Does it do true 422 HDMI out? Is 422 really that important to you?

You read waaaay too much into my post dude. Your random tantrum about wanting to work with low-end gear and not be a tech geek is the reason I was surprised you cared about the Shogun at all. I can't see any great advantage in sticking that huge screen on top of an FZ1000. Hell I hardly see the point of the Shogun for the GH4 when you can have 10-bit 422 downsampled 4K prores and no time limits from a Ninja Star. As long as you don't mind loosing the ability to crop in post from 4K, it retains the small form factor.

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Yeah, I was wondering about that too earlier... can't see me using it like that either.

But for ultimate creative control and high quality productions, people are going to want to use bigger sensors, interchange lenses and use more expensive cameras/more extensive gear along with it; myself included. If I've got something to shoot and the bulk of a tripod, the GH4, maybe the BMPCC, some zooms and primes, filters, batteries, lights, audio equipment, etc, isn't a burden... then why not go all out? But as a hybrid camera for stills and video, throwing it in a backpack and not having to worry about gear and being a breeze to carry around when you're on-the-go/travelling. No question, the FZ1000 it is. But I'm using it 'as is'. I'm not gonna throw it on a rig, I'm not gonna use it with a Atomos anything, to me it just doesn't make that much sense.

This is an all-in-one camera, not an add-everything-camera. Get a GH4 if you want to add stuff.

If you're going to rent the Shogun, then why not rent a camera package with some nice lenses along with it? I mean, if you're really on a tight budget and depending on your personal beliefs, then sure... you can put the Shogun together with the FZ1000. But I just can't ditch the feeling that you won't be getting that much more out of a 1" sensor and the GH4 makes sense to throw on a rig and use a follow focus and all that good stuff, but the FZ1000 imho just isn't that kind of production friendly camera. And that kind of raises the question, why bother with the Shogun at all? I think it's a honest question to ask, and Matt did just so. Anyways. Some might want to do it, some might not, nothing is just dead on wrong, everyone has their own way and style. If you need to get around a recording time limit and increase some of the quality, then it might even be one of the few, if not only, choices you have, you're right.

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@Matt, "tantrum"? Really? Sorry you took it that way... but OK whatever.

@Cinegain, first off... I was given the impression that you couldn't even use the FZ with a Shogun at all from other posts. I'd read that once you record you can't monitor or turn off the display graphics, etc.

So, when I read that there are indeed extended possibilities should the need arise for less banding or longer record times, or running XLR mics into it, the ability to monitor sound, larger monitor display, etc. then there are additional options available.  

That's all I was getting at. Like discovering any gear you already have, now has additional capability you weren't aware of before. 

No "tantrum" just sharing the info that it's possible if needed.

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I know people were bummed the LX100 didn't have live-out, wanting to use it for aerials and all it being such a small little camera shooting 4K with a reasonably sized sensor. Wasn't sure about the FZ1000 and again, not sure I'll find a use for it personally and would rather add stuff to something like the GH4 or BMPCC, which I thinks makes a lot of sense. But you're right, it is always nice to find out you have more possibilities than less. ;)

Been enjoying yours so far? Can you see yourself travelling around with it more so than something else as well?

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@Cinegain, I can't think of many situations I'd personally use the Shogun with the FZ, but if I was making a short or doc & had a friend with a Shogun ( which I do) I might borrow it for the extra audio monitoring & possibly better image. Not to mention the larger 7in display.

I haven't put the FZ through paces yet, but the more I get stuff tweaked in the menus, I'm really thrilled with the quality I'm getting for stills and 4k using a $900 camera thats so fun, easy, and quick to use with such a wide range of shooting situation possibilities.

So far, it appears to be exactly the all-in-one travel cam I've been looking for. Excited to see how it performs carrying it around the Yucatan & seeing how it handles on the street & in high humidity/heat.

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Great to hear! In the getting-to-know-phase I had it with me in Hong Kong, it was over 30°C (roughly 90°F) and very humid (although in and around the city, wasn't in no rain forrest or anything), no complaints from the camera or myself. Got pretty excited using it for stills and in 4K Photo mode too. It just catches lots of detail and the lens is pretty sharp. I just love to zoom in everywhere. I'm going to be in London around New Years and will make sure to bring both the FZ1000 (during the day for some of the scenery stuff) and the LX100 (at night and for street shooting).

And of course, if you can have the Shogun at your disposal, I wouldn't say 'no' either.

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I realize this particular "bridge" camera type doesn't really fit the demographic of the typical user here ;) but I figured I'd ask anyway in case any of you actually got this camera and have good suggestions.

Was going to get one of the cheapo rain covers for the FZ1000 like the OP/TECH rain sleeve, but it looks like it's held on in the back by taking off the eyepiece and then putting it back on to secure the sleeve on. But, it doesn't appear that the FZ's eyepiece is removable. Or is it?

Any recommendations for a cheap rain cover? Or, is the DIY plastic bag and rubber band just as good as anything out there?

I figured it might be good to use on the beach when it's windy to keep the sand off too.

Also...

Just FYI:

Some reviewers were put off by the placement of the battery/card so near the tripod mount so that if you have a mounting plate on it you can't get the battery door open.

I was concerned about this too, but it wasn't going to be a deal breaker.

Was thrilled to discover that the awesome Sirui compact travel tripod I've been using works great!

The mounting plate is small enough and you can slide it over enough before securing it to allow for the battery/card door to open just fine.

I paid around $139 I think for this tripod in 2013. It's very compact at just under 12in folded, but comes up to chest level. You can unscrew the top column for an even more stable support, and it folds and configures to make a nice shoulder/video rig too.


If you get the resistance on the head just right, you can actually do fairly smooth video pans with it as well.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BFDBO2E/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Here's a snap of the mounting plate on my new FZK

 

IMG_3921.JPG

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