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Andrew Reid

The importance of firmware updates and why Panasonic are too late with V-LOG for the GH4

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

 In fact, I'd say the Nikon 28mm AIS F2.8 is the best lens I've ever owned. Not only in build-quality, but in optics. Masterpiece of a lens.

​Yeah? Damn, I see this one all the time on craigslist for a reasonable price. Should pick it up.

 

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

Loving the V-Log L beta Panasonic Canada got me!

OK you need to understand we need much more than that! :D 

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

Jordan two questions we're dying for, just yes or no:

Does it change colours in anyway? A colour science tweak?

Does it increase dynamic range?

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The DVX200 (also shopping with V-log L is due out in Fall this year.  My gut tells me thats when the V-log  L update for the GH4 will be released.  My understanding was the Anamorphic update was now and the V-log later this year. My bet is September.  

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I assume everyone saw this -  

 

 

"The log curves for the Varicam, the DVX200, and the GH4 (the latter coming in a firmware update later this year) are exactly the same over their common ranges. The DVX200 and GH4 will simply clip two stops earlier than the Varicam, but that’s still about two stops more than the GH4 currently captures."

http://www.dvinfo.net/article/acquisition/panasonic-avvcam/nab-15-from-the-panasonic-private-suite.html

NAB15-P1040164.jpg

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Guest Ebrahim Saadawi

TWO stops more DR? wow. I'll go test the raw stills to see if the sensor is even capable of a 2 stop improvement, that would be huge. I always found the raw stills to have similar contrast range/latitude to the 4K video, though not tested specifically. Going out to see, If I find two more stops in the raw stills then a log gamma can easily bring them into the video mode.

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The footage I've shot in the past month alone, with just my NX1/16-50/Ronin M trifecta, is proof to me that Samsung could crush everyone else if they play their cards right. They've nailed everything except the codec. The Autofocus is insane, the BSI sensor is a beast, the build quality is pro, the batteries last long, the tech inside is from this century. Even the h.265 is good in theory, but rather than use the superior compression for smaller files, they should use it for higher quality, 10 bit. Sure, the Sonys offer "more", but look at the price tags. 

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TWO stops more DR? wow. I'll go test the raw stills to see if the sensor is even capable of a 2 stop improvement, that would be huge. I always found the raw stills to have similar contrast range/latitude to the 4K video, though not tested specifically. Going out to see, If I find two more stops in the raw stills then a log gamma can easily bring them into the video mode.

​Two stops DR would be great, but we still need a RAW option for video or at the very least a less compressed codec such as ProRes or similar.

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I spoke with a Panasonic rep at Cinegear 2015. Mentioned how I was testing the DR of the GH4 and the BMCC. In my tests, the GH4 was significantly better at ISO 200 in Cine D. That led to the question, how can the camera get 2 stops more DR? As a camera buyer / tester who is constantly buying and testing as a means for producing technically sound footage, I've been expecting the GH4 V-Log  to arrive in December, in January, in February, in March, in April, in June, and in July... 

Today, I've been shooting with an ISO 200 with iDynamic turned to High and the shadows / highlights adjusted for max latitude. For what it's worth, it's quite usable at that particular ISO. It's almost as if the shadows are boosted to ISO 640 with the highlights closer to ISO 100. Solely as a DR test, there is a lot of detail in the image and it appears to capture a similar latitude to the 12.8 that the camera can shoot in RAW. Outside of ISO 200 & broad daylight the DR falls to pieces. The BMCC at ISO 1600 has about the same DR as it does at ISO 200. For what it's worth, the GH4 really needs V-Log for nothing other than being capable of producing consistent results in a wider range of lighting situations.

That being said, my fingers are on the "Buy It Now" button for the Shogun, or a BMCC Monitor, and a GH4 XL speed booster. But, I am also here typing away as a means for putting in an honest view about the importance of not drowning in firmware. For me, my frustration, or lack of shooting, has been festering for quite some time with  V-Log L. Hints why I've bought the BMCC. There's no need for external recording. It already features a log profile... On and on, right! Like a loop and a record playing as a means for constantly growing with the craft. I had 2 GH4s and already sold off one just to continue the buying / testing process: emphasis on testing. Also, there is some between-the-lines emphasis on Panasonic not releasing V-Log firmware.

In terms of investing money, time and creativity my, I am concerned that the consumer manufacturer's aren't using what they create. "Hey everyone!!! I am Sony / Panasonic / Samsung. Run away with me to 'Shutter Island.'" Of course, when you finally get there you realize the difficulty of maintaining the "cinematic reality" with a chopped up codec for a lifestyle.

With the creation / adaptation of ML we've come a long, long way as knowledgeable consumers. I don't see that being reciprocated with the manufacturers or programmers. ML came about in 2009, right. It's 2015 and ALEX truly is A1EX, isn't he? It's as simple as a firmware, but as difficult as an institution, right? And to see that knowledge / love being tossed aside, time and time again! Then to see the spec sheet on the A7RII with it's S35 oversampled 4K, 13 stops of DR, and a global shutter. Then again, unfortunately this is just another example of a perfect camera utilizing a "cell phone" codec. You can call me out now on the Shutter Island statement all you production heroes. You know who you are!

It's this kind of thought process that brings the Digital Bolex to light; perhaps even the truest sense of the BM Cinema Cameras. It's this kind of process that brings the Pocket Cinema Camera's electronics tethered to a medium format black and white sensor. Perhaps it's this kind of awareness that has a voice that may or may not be heard when a company like Sony / Panasonic / Samsung scales the spec sheet? All that aside, thank goodness for ML and Personal-View. Their efforts are to be commended. Also, thanks for some interesting perspective on the forum. It's another great topic, right on time.

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Panasonic has done a great job of steadily and vastly improving the GH line of cameras.  It is coming up on a year and half since the GH4 was announced, much less actually available for sale, several FREE firmware updates have been released with additional functionality, and they still get trashed for not providing the next FREE firmware update on OUR schedule, whatever that might be?  I'm sorry, but to me the #1 problem is expectations outrunning what is realistic.

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​Jordan Drake in the flesh! Er...in the...text? Haha, good to see you here!
Come on man, details! How do you like skin tones with V-Log? Do you find the 10-bit helps with gradeability when shooting that flat?

​I've noticed a huge improvement in skin tones with V-Log L, I've been bitching about Cine-D 'wax face' for some time. I've only shot preliminary tests with 10 bit, but it does look to make a difference in skies. I'll test it more thoroughly this week.

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Jordan, thanks for your responses
One more question
In the previous version of V-Log-L there was apparently more noise in the shadows (however it was easily cleaned I read)
So is this version somewhat cleaner as far as noise goes...in the shadows?

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