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Camera Advice ... M43, Panasonic G85 -> APSC/FF

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
Hey guys, I bought the Panasonic G85 M43. Got a great deal (£650 for body + kit lens) and due to business might be able to claim back £130 as its being used for work. packing 1.7f 25mm

I LOVE the ergonomics of the camera, the hold, the weight, the selfie flip screen, the 4K, the IBIS. I commonly hand the camera off to other people to film me, and here issues have come up due to the AF being pretty bad and people not adapting well to it and working around it (limited shooting time in evironments).

However big issues are:
1. Autofocus
I commonly hand the camera off to other people to film me, and here issues have come up due to the AF being pretty bad and people not adapting well to it and working around it (limited shooting time in environments).

2. Getting great deal of detail/DOF - seems really difficult to get even with the 1.7 25mm unless shooting conditions are optimal
3. Indoor situations, not even that poorly lit, can introduce some grain to video which is a pain in the ass.


I have a couple of options and would like advice:
1. +Sony A6500 4k, overheats less, way more expensive
2. +Sony A6300 4k, overheats, no ibis + buy a gimbal/steadycam
3. +Canon body and deal with 1080p video instead (4k has been so amazing to deal with given I can crop etc.)

My issues with the canon route -> no 4k
My issues with the Sony route -> paying a lot of money for bodies which are poorly made, but has 4k and phenomenal AF

Long term I'm not sure which glass I would be getting. I'm ideally eyeing up the sigma 18-35mm as it seems to give full-frame like performance on still pretty decent bodies.


I am reluctant to invest too much into M43 as ideally I do see myself already limited slightly by the small sensor. Don't get me wrong, I can make it work but it seems like a lot of compromise in shooting conditions and given the F1.7 is probably the best it gets without spending a lot of money, I would rather be getting more light in.

I could sell on the G85 but given the decent deal I got for it, I'm not convinced it would be a smart decision? My sister wouldn't mind having it and its still a good business camera. Also the selfie screen I'm just simply in love with for any vlogging action. Ideally I'd like the G85 to be a vloggy type camera I carry around with me and the secondary camera for the big work!



TLDR:
1. Advice please on bodies to go from to compliment G85
2. Advice on which glass pathway to choose if buying an A6500/A6300 or a canon body
 

godsakes

Prominent Member
If I was buying for video purposes I'd be inclined to stick to m4/3 lots of people swear by Panasonic (especially the GH series) for video.

There's always the 25mm f1.4 which in my view is still very reasonable money if you wanted thinner DOF
 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
If I was buying for video purposes I'd be inclined to stick to m4/3 lots of people swear by Panasonic (especially the GH series) for video.

There's always the 25mm f1.4 which in my view is still very reasonable money if you wanted thinner DOF


I'm just not getting anywhere near good enough or consistent enough DOF. Blurring out the background seems very dependant on the lighting situation. I could be totally wrong here, using my gear incorrectly etc. but thats the impression I'm getting.

I could be wrong but wouldn't a bigger sensor give me a lot more freedom in this regard?

the 25mm f1.4 is around £400.
a metabones adaptor is around £500-600

Those are 2 solutions I thought of but ultimately they're nearly as expensive as a used camera body!
 

shotokan101

Banned
Need to see some shots to check the shooting info (EXIF) I suspect it's camera settings - do you normally shoot aperture priority ?

Jim
 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
Need to see some shots to check the shooting info (EXIF) I suspect it's camera settings - do you normally shoot aperture priority ?

Jim


I shoot mainly film as opposed to pictures and in manual mode.

I'm shooting at the lowest aperture I can most of the time, keeping shutter speed double framerate and ISO as low as possible, usually 200-400.
 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
If you skip to 09:00,

I'm trying to attain a look similar to this. The DOF i can't seem to get with the 1.7mm or that "look"

It could be that I also suck at colour grading.. !
 

shotokan101

Banned
If you skip to 09:00,

I'm trying to attain a look similar to this. The DOF i can't seem to get with the 1.7mm or that "look"

It could be that I also suck at colour grading.. !


..sorry video won't play for me for some reason... :(
 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
..sorry video won't play for me for some reason... :(


Damn! Hmm if you google "Christian Guzman cashing out" it might be better there on youtube. :)

would be great if u could check to give me advice!

I did a video just for fun with the 1.7mm .. u can evidentlty tell by the repetition of shots:

that was my end result, any hints tips would be appreciated.

I'm very new to all this so I could be wrong but someone did warn me that the DOF is way easier to get on an APSC lens.. like the Sony or Canon or that I'd likely have to invest in speedboosters but M43 could work.
 

godsakes

Prominent Member
2nd hand the 25mm f1.4 can be had for £250 which seems reasonable. Haven't been keeping up to date with Sony but last I checked I wasn't a huge fan of their lens range (great bodies though).

Can't see the video, but with DOF much depends on how close you are to the subject, the focal length etc. the Olympus 45mm might be better as a thin DOF tool assuming you work with a 90mm equiv focal length
 

shotokan101

Banned
Check this out



I think that you probably need to get a longer focal length and shoot from further away..
 

newbie1

Distinguished Member
Can you remote control the camera and prevent the problems of others having trouble? I don't have the Panasonic but on my canon for example I can put on face tracking auto focus and remote control, works pretty for speaking to camera pieces.
 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
2nd hand the 25mm f1.4 can be had for £250 which seems reasonable. Haven't been keeping up to date with Sony but last I checked I wasn't a huge fan of their lens range (great bodies though).

Can't see the video, but with DOF much depends on how close you are to the subject, the focal length etc. the Olympus 45mm might be better as a thin DOF tool assuming you work with a 90mm equiv focal length


Hmm My plan would have been to buy an a6300/6500 and mount canon glass to it using the sigma MC-100.


Very true on the longer focal length.. so invest in more glass which I agree with. I'm just a bit concerned given that the 1.7f 25mm hasn't totally blown me away and theres not that much M43 glass available for a decent price which can better that apeature when shot open.

Whilst on the APSC size, there are a few lenses (albiet much bigger in size) which can.
I could be wrong here but for example:
Sigma 18-35mm an a A6300 vs a Panasonic 12-35mm f2.8. on my G85, surely there is no comparison in terms of DOF/Bokeh?
 

shotokan101

Banned
use the DOF calculator......
 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
Yep but didn't expect you to be using non-native lenses tbh

My plan if going down the a6300 route was to get the sigma mc1 adaptor and invest in canon glass as its cheaper.

Is my plan sounding horribly wrong?

I cant find any good A6500 deals otherwise I'd snap on those. The price difference between the two used seems to be £400 which is a lens or a gimbal!
 

snerkler

Distinguished Member
So what I can gather from this is that you're not getting the shallow DOF that you want and that you're getting noise (grain)?

Unfortunately these are limitations of using a smaller sensor. Don't get me wrong m4/3 are great (I own one) but if shallow DOF and low noise are your goals then you should really consider full frame (FF). The trouble with going for something like the Sony A6xxx is that you're only going to get approx 1 stop more shallow DOF which might not be that noticeable.

The problem with FF is the weight and cost, and the only FF mirrorless are the Sony A7's. Obviously there's DSLRs but video isn't generally as well implemented as mirrorless.

Regarding a comment you made above, light has nothing to do with DOF, DOF is due to focal length, aperture, subject distance and sensor size (by means of subject distance in relation to actual focal length). Light does make your subject pop though. Another factor of background blur is how far away the background is from the subject, the greater the separation the more background blur.
 
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kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
No, it's just my mindset that mirrorless is about size reduction/minimization - whereas that's clearly not a factor for you.
So what I can gather from this is that you're not getting the shallow DOF that you want and that you're getting noise (grain)?

Unfortunately these are limitations of using a smaller sensor. Don't get me wrong m4/3 are great (I own one) but if shallow DOF and low noise are your goals then you should really consider full frame (FF). The trouble with going for something like the Sony A6xxx is that you're only going to get approx 1 stop more shallow DOF which might not be that noticeable.

The problem with FF is the weight and cost, and the only FF mirrorless are the Sony A7's. Obviously there's DSLRs but video isn't generally as well implemented as mirrorless.

Regarding a comment you made above, light has nothing to do with DOF, DOF is due to focal length, aperture, subject distance and sensor size (by means of subject distance in relation to actual focal length). Light does make your subject poo though. Another factor of background blur is how far away the background is from the subject, the greater the separation the more background blur.


Thank you. I think you're right as in I'm running into the limitations of m43. Maybe I'm underrating the portability but the technical limitations have annoyed me far more often than I've thought "thank god this is so small I can carry this thing).

Hmmm damn, I thought something like the A6xxx given the 24megapixel sensor might be able to satiate my needs for DOF.

The big issue with full frame as you said is the price and weight, mainly the price and the fact that I can't get a 4k-able full frame camera and 4k video editting just helps SO much from stabilising an image to cropping and maintaining detail.



I am looking at the A7xxx rumoured to be coming out end of the year. If its reasonable priced <2k, I might opt to try it if I'm getting enough fun out of my current setup.

I feel at present the AF, low light performance and lack of bokeh are holding me back from loving this G85. My worry form what you're saying is will have a similar experience with the A6500? :(
 

snerkler

Distinguished Member
Thank you. I think you're right as in I'm running into the limitations of m43. Maybe I'm underrating the portability but the technical limitations have annoyed me far more often than I've thought "thank god this is so small I can carry this thing).

Hmmm damn, I thought something like the A6xxx given the 24megapixel sensor might be able to satiate my needs for DOF.

The big issue with full frame as you said is the price and weight, mainly the price and the fact that I can't get a 4k-able full frame camera and 4k video editting just helps SO much from stabilising an image to cropping and maintaining detail.



I am looking at the A7xxx rumoured to be coming out end of the year. If its reasonable priced <2k, I might opt to try it if I'm getting enough fun out of my current setup.

I feel at present the AF, low light performance and lack of bokeh are holding me back from loving this G85. My worry form what you're saying is will have a similar experience with the A6500? :(
MP also has nothing to do with DOF. I'm sure some of the Sony A7's have 4K but they're not cheap. I doubt any new A7 will be sub £2k but you never know ;)

The A6xxx are cracking cameras and you will be more shallow DOF for sure, but it won't be a huge difference. As a rough guide all al things considered equal and to get the same framing f2 on m4/3 would roughly equal f2.8 on APS-C and f4 on FF. therefore if you shot at f2 on FF you'd need f1.4 on APS-C and f1 on m4/3.

Bokeh (how the out of focus area looks) also depends on the lens design and construction.
 

AMc

Distinguished Member
Looking at your YouTube video it's very difficult to see if anything is in focus because it's very heavily compressed. YouTube can mangle video quite badly so check out guides for your video editor to make he best output file.

The white balance looks very pink to me - what was the lighting like and what WB setting were you using?

Looking at the cashing out video - the thing that stands out to me is the colour grading and the pull focus shots, not the DOF - this has been done by someone with a lot of experience and skill. There is some better bokeh than you're getting but I wouldn't necessarily write off your equipment at this stage.
Grading video to add the "film" look is quite skilful and you usually start with an uncompressed (i.e. massive) source file and a well shot and exposed scene.

Expecting to hand the camera to anyone and get professional results is optimistic.
It's like sitting someone in a racing car and expecting them to compete in a race, they'll most likely just make a bigger mistake in a faster car. Tools are only part of the equation.

I would start with setting up a tripod and filming yourself to get to grips with how to get the look you're after. Failing that if you really want the handheld aesthetic you're going to have to take some time shooting someone else while you get to grips with what you're doing.

The close up shots you got of your bicep look too close to get a reasonable background blur at 25mm but I would expect to get better.
A 45mm f1.8 Olympus will give you a good blur on a head shot at those kind of distances.
This is one of mine, shot in a very dark jewellery studio. There's probably 1.5-2m between the closest and furthest parts of the scene.


Polishing
by Andy McNair, on Flickr

I'm shooting at the lowest aperture I can most of the time, keeping shutter speed double framerate and ISO as low as possible, usually 200-400.
Shutter double the frame rate so 1/100th (50fps)?
I'd be tempted to experiment with fixing the aperture and the ISO and let the camera choose the frame rate to see what works.
 
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kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
Looking at your YouTube video it's very difficult to see if anything is in focus because it's very heavily compressed. YouTube can mangle video quite badly so check out guides for your video editor to make he best output file.

The white balance looks very pink to me - what was the lighting like and what WB setting were you using?

Looking at the cashing out video - the thing that stands out to me is the colour grading and the pull focus shots, not the DOF - this has been done by someone with a lot of experience and skill. There is some better bokeh than you're getting but I wouldn't necessarily write off your equipment at this stage.
Grading video to add the "film" look is quite skilful and you usually start with an uncompressed (i.e. massive) source file and a well shot and exposed scene.

Expecting to hand the camera to anyone and get professional results is optimistic.
It's like sitting someone in a racing car and expecting them to compete in a race, they'll most likely just make a bigger mistake in a faster car. Tools are only part of the equation.

I would start with setting up a tripod and filming yourself to get to grips with how to get the look you're after. Failing that if you really want the handheld aesthetic you're going to have to take some time shooting someone else while you get to grips with what you're doing.

The close up shots you got of your bicep look too close to get a reasonable background blur at 25mm but I would expect to get better.
A 45mm f1.8 Olympus will give you a good blur on a head shot at those kind of distances.
This is one of mine, shot in a very dark jewellery studio. There's probably 1.5-2m between the closest and furthest parts of the scene.

Polishing by Andy McNair, on Flickr


Shutter double the frame rate so 1/100th (50fps)?
I'd be tempted to experiment with fixing the aperture and the ISO and let the camera choose the frame rate to see what works.

Yup I agree, I think the grading tbh and skin tones all look off! I did it myself but with very limited experience haha. The actual footage was really horrible, I'll try to upload some but it was very over exposed and difficult to try and fix in post. Highlights were horrible, skin tones mismatched from the neck compared to the arms, etc.

Are there any good tutorials for this? I have tried to google about but can't find a nice tutorial on colour correction for skin tones, specifically for adobe premiere if possible. All I find it people try to sell LUTS or doing really quick and dirty colour correction (which I've tried and failed with).

Again, I completely agree with the bokeh aspect. I felt like the person filming was very very very obssessed with getting closer in every shot without realising that he was probably at times at a perfect distance for the shot. I have so much wasted footage of a really decent DOF and then he just continused to move closer and closer and the camera loses focus!

Whats a pull focus shot?


I have so much to learn!!
 

AMc

Distinguished Member
I felt like the person filming was very very very obssessed with getting closer in every shot without realising that he was probably at times at a perfect distance for the shot.
...
Whats a pull focus shot?
Tripods don't move ;)

Pull focus is where you deliberately change the focus point during a shot to change the emphasis of the scene.
In general, in video zooming and moving focus during a shot is discouraged as it makes the footage hard to watch - cutting is usually better unless you're going for a handheld documentary style. That "rule" is a bit less clear these days as so much stuff is done on cameraphones or vlogging.

One nice feature of my Olympus cameras is if you use "touch to focus" on the rear screen you can select a new focus point in the scene and the camera will smoothly "rack" to the new point. Your Panasonic probably does something similar. This will work best on relatively static scenes with the camera stable and static.
 

markie g

Distinguished Member
Yup I agree, I think the grading tbh and skin tones all look off! I did it myself but with very limited experience haha. The actual footage was really horrible, I'll try to upload some but it was very over exposed and difficult to try and fix in post. Highlights were horrible, skin tones mismatched from the neck compared to the arms, etc.

Are there any good tutorials for this? I have tried to google about but can't find a nice tutorial on colour correction for skin tones, specifically for adobe premiere if possible. All I find it people try to sell LUTS or doing really quick and dirty colour correction (which I've tried and failed with).

Again, I completely agree with the bokeh aspect. I felt like the person filming was very very very obssessed with getting closer in every shot without realising that he was probably at times at a perfect distance for the shot. I have so much wasted footage of a really decent DOF and then he just continused to move closer and closer and the camera loses focus!

Whats a pull focus shot?


I have so much to learn!!
You're already unhappy with the DOF, so by saying that you're not too happy with the shots being so close up means the person needs to stand further away, which means more is going to be in focus.

As many have stated, distance to subject alters your DOF. Closer you are the less DOF you have, standing further away means you get more DOF.

As shoto mentioned, you might want to get a longer focal length and stand further back (make sure the camera and/or lens has IS)
 

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