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Comment on the forum The first actually useful GH5 review I’ve read comes from Amadeusz at the excellent Polish website VideoDSLR.pl (Google Translated here) He look at all aspects of the new camera in detail, including the quality of the promising 180fps slow-mo mode. Do check out their review and videos above. What’s interesting is that they discover the [...]

The post Panasonic GH5 starts shipping in 3 days. How’s the 180fps slow-mo quality? appeared first on EOSHD.

All credit is given to author EOSHDAndrew Reid (EOSHD)

Here’s my hands-on URSA Mini Pro Review – the newly released ENG / Digital Film / Streaming crossover camera from Blackmagic Design. But what have Blackmagic Design improved?

Blackmagic Design just released a new camera – and to be very honest, in the past, these words caused a lot of excitement and doubt at the same time. On the one hand, Blackmagic really managed to shake up the camera industry by packing a lot of pro features like, for example, raw recording into their earliest cameras. With their raw support, they enabled low budget filmmakers to produce high-end quality previously only available from much more expensive cameras. On the other hand, until not so long ago, Blackmagic upset a lot of people by announcing too many cameras at the same time, not meeting their delivery dates or facing sensor issues with some of their cameras.

Blackmagic Design learned their lessons

I think it is safe to say that Blackmagic Design have now learned from their mistakes. In the past year, they have started to announce products only when they are already available, and have succeeded in stopping any significant leaks about their new products.

The Blackmagic Design URSA Mini 4.6K and the new URSA Mini Pro side-by-side.

A Definitive Second Generation Camera

And here it is, the Blackmagic Design URSA Mini Pro. It was only just announced, but was already shipping right after its introduction.

It’s quite clear that this is a definitive second generation camera that offers huge usability improvements over the original URSA Mini 4.6K. Because it is the same sensor and optical performance is expected to be the same or similar, am focusing instead on the hands-on aspects of the camera in this review.

Almost the same, but strikingly different: The URSA Mini Pro can take up to 4 different interchangeable mounts.

Improvements and Differences to the URSA Mini 4.6K

While with the original URSA Mini 4K and 4.6K you had to buy separate EF and PL versions, the PRO offers an interchangeable mount between EF, PL, B4 and Nikon, making this camera adaptable to almost any lens on the market.

When compared side-by-side, the first thing to notice is the same-sized body. The new URSA Mini Pro is around 300 grams heavier according to our measurements, though. It’s not a super light camera, but I actually like it for this form factor, because it’s very evenly balanced and sits nicely on the shoulder.

Weight Differences between the URSA Mini 4.6K (below) and URSA Mini Pro (above).

What’s also new is the greatly reduced start-up time between the two generations of the camera. It was around 10 seconds for the URSA Mini 4K and 4.6K, and it’s now only around 5 seconds – something that makes a difference in everyday shooting scenarios.

Startup time on the URSA Mini 4.6K

Startup time on the URSA Mini Pro

ENG-style New Features Improve Versatility

Logically layout of ENG-style buttons on the URSA Mini Pro.

As you can see, the outside of this new camera has changed significantly. Blackmagic have moved away from functional minimalism to providing many custom buttons for all kinds of functions, much like we have been used to from other cameras for many years now, particularly those in a broadcast-type form factor. This means less digging into menus and faster access to the functionality you constantly require. Immediate access to Iris, ISO, Shutter, White Balance, High Frame Rate recording, Audio settings and customisable buttons makes the URSA Mini Pro a valid ENG camera in addition to its “digital film” applications. There is now an easily-accessible wheel to adjust either the headphone volume or the aperture of the iris. Unfortunately, the audio knobs are still “infinite” and don’t have hard stops, which means that you will always have to look at the screen in order to see where your audio levels are – but the external display makes monitoring audio much easier.

Finally: ND Filters Built-in

In my opinion, one of the biggest shortcomings of the original URSA Mini 4K and 4.6K was the lack of built-in ND filters. This is something that’s essential in the ENG world, and considering that it was designed in this form factor, many people including myself were surprised that NDs were missing. Not any more, though – Blackmagic Design have added three steps of switchable, built-in ND to the URSA Mini Pro, at 2, 4 and 6 stops. It’s a rotating filter wheel just like the ones found on other similarly-sized cameras, such as the Sony FS7. There is just one minor design fault: the filter wheel shows the labels 1-2-3-4, with the filter enabled from setting 2 onwards. in my opinion, Blackmagic should have chosen the word “clear” instead of 1 for the sake of clarity. However, they do provide a printed explanation on the side of the camera for this. The filters work just fine and we couldn’t see any significant colour shift when using them on a quick test outside.

Smaller Screen, Smart Idea

The screen has shrunk. It’s now 4 inches across, which practically makes much more sense as a built-in screen rather than the 5-inch found in the original URSA Mini. Functions that you don’t constantly need to access have now been moved to the inside of the screen – specifically audio settings like XLR phantom power or playback functions.

URSA Mini 4.6K next to the URSA Mini Pro, both with opened screen

One small downside of the monitor: It still cannot be rotated 180 degrees like on many other cameras, which means you can’t do a “selfie” shoot or have the screen facing the side of your camera. Also, at some angles, it can block the small adjustment wheel that controls the iris. These are all minor issues, though.

Screen size comparison between the two URSA Minis – with the new URSA Mini Pro on the right-hand side.

Optional URSA Mini Viewfinder

If you want to use this camera on the shoulder, I recommend getting the optional URSA Mini viewfinder, which offers a really high quality 1080p image, and has its own focus magnification and peaking controls. Be aware that peaking in the viewfinder also outlines the screen overlays it receives from the camera, which can be a bit distracting.

Intuitive: The Operating System and Menu Structure

The operating system found on the URSA Mini Pro is where Blackmagic demonstrates its knowledge as a company that has a lot of experience in software and interface design. First of all, the touch screen is super responsive, and while I am not a big fan of touch screens on cameras, I can really see this work just fine for most productions because of its speed and sensitivity.

The layout of all the menu items and settings is very logical – this is something that many Japanese camera manufacturers traditionally struggle with. If you have ever looked for a specific function that you don’t need every day on a Sony camera, you know exactly what I am talking about. All that is much easier here – there are virtual touch buttons and sliders that use the available screen real estate effectively, and everything feels very self-explanatory. The only other camera menu as straightforward as this is probably the Arri Alexa, with RED cameras coming in as a close second.

The URSA Mini Pro features an outside display with several brightness settings that shows the most important camera settings even when you have the screen closed. A very convenient feature, they clearly took note from other manufacturers who have built this into their cameras in the past.

New outside display on the URSA Mini Pro.

Recording: Now with SD Cards Next to CFast Cards

Let’s move on to recording. The URSA Mini Pro features two CFast Card slots and now also dual UHS-II SD card slots. That means if you are not recording something data intensive like RAW, you can opt to record onto much less expensive SD cards. And yes, the URSA Mini Pro records up to 12-bit CinemaDNG RAW, something that still no other camera in this price range can do. It also records up to ProRes XQ and all other flavours of ProRes.

SD card slots now next to the CFast card slots.

That’s it for the first-look review of the new Blackmagic Design URSA Mini Pro! Stay tuned for more about this camera from us at cinema5D as we get to know it better.

The post Blackmagic Design URSA Mini Pro Review – Hands-On Video appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DNino Leitner

Here’s my hands-on URSA Mini Pro Review – the newly released ENG / Digital Film / Streaming crossover camera from Blackmagic Design. But what have Blackmagic Design improved?

Blackmagic Design just released a new camera – and to be very honest, in the past, these words caused a lot of excitement and doubt at the same time. On the one hand, Blackmagic really managed to shake up the camera industry by packing a lot of pro features like, for example, raw recording into their earliest cameras. With their raw support, they enabled low budget filmmakers to produce high-end quality previously only available from much more expensive cameras. On the other hand, until not so long ago, Blackmagic upset a lot of people by announcing too many cameras at the same time, not meeting their delivery dates or facing sensor issues with some of their cameras.

Blackmagic Design learned their lessons

I think it is safe to say that Blackmagic Design have now learned from their mistakes. In the past year, they have started to announce products only when they are already available, and have succeeded in stopping any significant leaks about their new products.

The Blackmagic Design URSA Mini 4.6K and the new URSA Mini Pro side-by-side.

A Definitive Second Generation Camera

And here it is, the Blackmagic Design URSA Mini Pro. It was only just announced, but was already shipping right after its introduction.

It’s quite clear that this is a definitive second generation camera that offers huge usability improvements over the original URSA Mini 4.6K. Because it is the same sensor and optical performance is expected to be the same or similar, am focusing instead on the hands-on aspects of the camera in this review.

Almost the same, but strikingly different: The URSA Mini Pro can take up to 4 different interchangeable mounts.

Improvements and Differences to the URSA Mini 4.6K

While with the original URSA Mini 4K and 4.6K you had to buy separate EF and PL versions, the PRO offers an interchangeable mount between EF, PL, B4 and Nikon, making this camera adaptable to almost any lens on the market.

When compared side-by-side, the first thing to notice is the same-sized body. The new URSA Mini Pro is around 300 grams heavier according to our measurements, though. It’s not a super light camera, but I actually like it for this form factor, because it’s very evenly balanced and sits nicely on the shoulder.

Weight Differences between the URSA Mini 4.6K (below) and URSA Mini Pro (above).

What’s also new is the greatly reduced start-up time between the two generations of the camera. It was around 10 seconds for the URSA Mini 4K and 4.6K, and it’s now only around 5 seconds – something that makes a difference in everyday shooting scenarios.

Startup time on the URSA Mini 4.6K

Startup time on the URSA Mini Pro

ENG-style New Features Improve Versatility

Logically layout of ENG-style buttons on the URSA Mini Pro.

As you can see, the outside of this new camera has changed significantly. Blackmagic have moved away from functional minimalism to providing many custom buttons for all kinds of functions, much like we have been used to from other cameras for many years now, particularly those in a broadcast-type form factor. This means less digging into menus and faster access to the functionality you constantly require. Immediate access to Iris, ISO, Shutter, White Balance, High Frame Rate recording, Audio settings and customisable buttons makes the URSA Mini Pro a valid ENG camera in addition to its “digital film” applications. There is now an easily-accessible wheel to adjust either the headphone volume or the aperture of the iris. Unfortunately, the audio knobs are still “infinite” and don’t have hard stops, which means that you will always have to look at the screen in order to see where your audio levels are – but the external display makes monitoring audio much easier.

Finally: ND Filters Built-in

In my opinion, one of the biggest shortcomings of the original URSA Mini 4K and 4.6K was the lack of built-in ND filters. This is something that’s essential in the ENG world, and considering that it was designed in this form factor, many people including myself were surprised that NDs were missing. Not any more, though – Blackmagic Design have added three steps of switchable, built-in ND to the URSA Mini Pro, at 2, 4 and 6 stops. It’s a rotating filter wheel just like the ones found on other similarly-sized cameras, such as the Sony FS7. There is just one minor design fault: the filter wheel shows the labels 1-2-3-4, with the filter enabled from setting 2 onwards. in my opinion, Blackmagic should have chosen the word “clear” instead of 1 for the sake of clarity. However, they do provide a printed explanation on the side of the camera for this. The filters work just fine and we couldn’t see any significant colour shift when using them on a quick test outside.

Smaller Screen, Smart Idea

The screen has shrunk. It’s now 4 inches across, which practically makes much more sense as a built-in screen rather than the 5-inch found in the original URSA Mini. Functions that you don’t constantly need to access have now been moved to the inside of the screen – specifically audio settings like XLR phantom power or playback functions.

URSA Mini 4.6K next to the URSA Mini Pro, both with opened screen

One small downside of the monitor: It still cannot be rotated 180 degrees like on many other cameras, which means you can’t do a “selfie” shoot or have the screen facing the side of your camera. Also, at some angles, it can block the small adjustment wheel that controls the iris. These are all minor issues, though.

Screen size comparison between the two URSA Minis – with the new URSA Mini Pro on the right-hand side.

Optional URSA Mini Viewfinder

If you want to use this camera on the shoulder, I recommend getting the optional URSA Mini viewfinder, which offers a really high quality 1080p image, and has its own focus magnification and peaking controls. Be aware that peaking in the viewfinder also outlines the screen overlays it receives from the camera, which can be a bit distracting.

Intuitive: The Operating System and Menu Structure

The operating system found on the URSA Mini Pro is where Blackmagic demonstrates its knowledge as a company that has a lot of experience in software and interface design. First of all, the touch screen is super responsive, and while I am not a big fan of touch screens on cameras, I can really see this work just fine for most productions because of its speed and sensitivity.

The layout of all the menu items and settings is very logical – this is something that many Japanese camera manufacturers traditionally struggle with. If you have ever looked for a specific function that you don’t need every day on a Sony camera, you know exactly what I am talking about. All that is much easier here – there are virtual touch buttons and sliders that use the available screen real estate effectively, and everything feels very self-explanatory. The only other camera menu as straightforward as this is probably the Arri Alexa, with RED cameras coming in as a close second.

The URSA Mini Pro features an outside display with several brightness settings that shows the most important camera settings even when you have the screen closed. A very convenient feature, they clearly took note from other manufacturers who have built this into their cameras in the past.

New outside display on the URSA Mini Pro.

Recording: Now with SD Cards Next to CFast Cards

Let’s move on to recording. The URSA Mini Pro features two CFast Card slots and now also dual UHS-II SD card slots. That means if you are not recording something data intensive like RAW, you can opt to record onto much less expensive SD cards. And yes, the URSA Mini Pro records up to 12-bit CinemaDNG RAW, something that still no other camera in this price range can do. It also records up to ProRes XQ and all other flavours of ProRes.

SD card slots now next to the CFast card slots.

That’s it for the first-look review of the new Blackmagic Design URSA Mini Pro! Stay tuned for more about this camera from us at cinema5D as we get to know it better.

The post Blackmagic Design URSA Mini Pro Review – Hands-On Video appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DNino Leitner

The Panasonic GH5 is one of the most highly-anticipated compact cinema cameras of the year. It is the first of its kind to finally break the barrier towards a compact form-factor 10-bit 4K acquisition in the realm of (somewhat) large sensor cameras. Here is our lab analysis, where we will evaluate all the pros and cons of the new GH5 sensor, with a focus on the new 4K 10-bit mode.

Note that we used a pre-production camera model with firmware v1.00 for this test.

Panasonic GH5 Review - Sensor

Panasonic GH5 Review

After a short delay, here is our long awaited Panasonic GH5 lab review. We tried to publish this earlier, but our questions surrounding the 10-bit mode required more investigation before we could put this new camera to use. Yesterday we finally received firmware 1.00 with a working V-log activation, and were able to re-test and confirm our findings. Also check out the preliminary hands-on that Graham did in January.

Panasonic GH5 with a Speedboster Ultra and the Zeiss 50mm Cp2 Macro Lens

Panasonic GH5 with a Speedboster Ultra and the Zeiss 50mm Cp2 Macro Lens

In this Panasonic GH5 review, we will run the usual tests we do here at cinema5D, and look at several important sensor attributes like dynamic range, sharpness and rolling shutter performance. We will also try to evaluate the low-light performance and take a particular look at 10-bit.

We test all cameras with the same Zeiss 50mm Cp2 macro lens (more on how we test HERE). In the case of the Panasonic GH5, the lens was attached via EF-mount with the Metabones Speedbooster Ultra adapter, which gives us excellent optical performance. For our dynamic range test we use a DSC labs XYLA-21 transmissive test chart, and to measure sharpness we use a combination of a subjective chart and a huge 8K Imatest ISO chart. Let’s get started.

The Panasonic GH5 Introduces 10-bit 4K

That the Panasonic GH5 introduces 10-bit color depth is this camera’s most interesting feature, and one that had many filmmakers (including myself) excited for the last couple of months. But looking at the camera’s specs, there are other aspects to like:

  • MFT-size sensor with slightly larger sensor area than the GH4
  • 5-axis internal image stabilisation
  • Internal 10-bit 4:2:2 in 4K (up 30fps)
  • Internal 8-bit 4:2:0 in 4K (up 60fps)
  • Up 180fps in 1080p
  • Dual SD card slots
  • No recording time limit
  • V-Log Gamma (paid upgrade $100)
  • Affordable price

A firmware update later this year will bring 6K photo mode, anamorphic recording as well as internal DCI 4K 10-bit with a 400mbit all-I codec. Currently, we’re stuck with 150mbit, which is fine too and should give us great results.

But let’s go into 10-bit color depth right away. We were really eager to test it and expected to see silky smooth skin gradations and footage with rich color information from Vlog recordings. After all, many of us have been shooting 8-bit color for much too long and the step up to 10-bit should make a huge difference, going from millions into 1.1 billion colors, especially as we’re using flat gamma on all our productions now, with V-log on this nice new GH5 camera to be specific. Many were frustrated with Vlog on the GH4, so let’s see how the performance was improved.

Panasonic Gh5 10-bit & Vlog Problems

Note that we used a pre-production camera model, supplied by Panasonic. Firmware was: v1.00

We were initially impressed when we saw GH5 10 bit footage. With the right coloring or LUT, the results do look more organic and filmic than most of what we’ve seen in the area of small form-factor cinema cameras that shoot 8-bit. But after trying Vlog and tweaking the colors a bit more, I just couldn’t get those skin tones to look nice. In fact, I had to give up at one point and accept what was dawning on me: something was wrong with that Vlog on the GH5. But a claim like that after a simple look at random test footage is never enough, so the only way to confirm this observation was to do a proper side-by-side comparison with a few other cameras. Luckily, we also had a Sony FS7, Canon C700 and Canon 1DC lying around at cinema5D HQ. Two of those cameras shoot 10-bit internal, and one of them is in fact a seriously expensive and cool camera (C700), so that should give us some perspective.

Panasonic GH5 Skin Tones - Minimal Grading, 10bit

Panasonic GH5 Skin Tones Vlog – Minimal Grading, 10bit

So I recorded my hand and face to demonstrate the way this sensor interprets skin tones. The color depth is set to 10bit, we shot in V-log and did a rough rec.709 grade to match the other cameras. Skin tones are kept natural – by which I mean that yellow and green tints were kept “as is”. What was a bit disturbing to me is not only that some areas of the shot exhibit very basic color information, but that the adjacent color areas are so diverse. In one place my hand is green and in another it is pink and there is no gradation in between. These are very clear low bit-depth artefacts.

The window on the left is a 150% crop of my cheek with a 25% boost in saturation, so you can see the areas of separated color more clearly.

Panasonic GH5 Skin Tones - Minimal Grading, 8bit

Panasonic GH5 Skin Tones Vlog – Minimal Grading, 8bit

Here is the same shot in 8-bit mode on the Panasonic GH5. The poor color gradation is slightly more obvious here, but to be honest I cannot spot a huge difference in comparison to 10-bit. But shouldn’t 10-bit give us 1024 colors for each channel, resulting in over a billion distinct colors???

It is true that a flat gamma like V-log greatly diminishes color information in exchange for extended dynamic range and softer highlights and shadows. But still, I was a bit underwhelmed with the many color areas I saw on the GH5. So, let’s take a look at the other cameras.

Canon 1D C Skin Tones - Minimal Grading, 8bit

Canon 1D C Skin Tones – Minimal Grading, 8bit

Here’s the Canon 1D C. And yes, I can see the same kind of minimal color information there, resulting in large areas with a single color. What I also see is that different areas of my skin have different colors, but I see fewer pink and green blocks, resulting in a better skin tone harmony. Anyway, the 1D C is a dead horse, so let’s move on to other 10-bit cameras.

Sony FS7 Skin Tones - Minimal Grading, 10bit

Sony FS7 Skin Tones – Minimal Grading, 10bit

Ah, finally, the Sony FS7 brings a “bit” more depth to our eyes. Surprisingly, I can still make out those color artefacts in the skin, and bit depth seems to be less than expected, but clearly not as bad as on the GH5. When we look at the 150% crop window on the left, we can see that those patches have both better skin tone harmony and fewer color blocking artefacts.

Canon C700 Skin Tones - Minimal Grading, 10bit

Canon C700 Skin Tones – Minimal Grading, 10bit

Here is where it gets interesting. The Canon C700 comes in a huge form factor and with a high price tag. The latest flagship Canon C camera also shoots 10-bit ProRes in 4K DCI, so that’s what I chose for this shot. Of all the cameras, this one definitely gave us the best skin tones, best color harmony and the least color blocking artefacts. But still, I could make out rough color gradations in several areas.

10-bit Conclusion

Panasonic GH5 Skin Tones 10bit compared to other cameras

Panasonic GH5 Skin Tones 10bit compared to other cameras

It seems that none of these cameras truly records 1.1 billion colors and, unless my skin is made up of distinct color patches, there seems to be more to “10-bit color” than we know. Having tested and evaluated many camera sensors here at cinema5D, I can tell you this: none of this camera tech is as easy and simplistic as it might seem. Camera manufacturers try really hard to make it all work according to our expectations, but there are limitations everywhere. So if you truly want a 10-bit look in scientific terms, you should probably just keep in mind that we always get less in practice than on paper, so simply shoot 12-bit…

As for the Panasonic GH5… There really seems to be a problem with Vlog’s bit depth and colors, with skin tones being particularly problematic. In a last effort, I also tested sky gradations, because this is how everyone else seems to tests color depth:

Panasonic GH5 10 bit color depth. Graded with official Panasonic Vlog to rec709 LUT

I applied the official Panasonic Vlog to rec709 LUT to the shot above and increased contrast. The image wasn’t altered in any other way. We have forwarded our findings to Panasonic and hope that this issue will be resolved in one of the upcoming firmwares.

Many people had hopes that the GH5 would solve many of the problems everyone had had with Vlog on the 8-bit GH4. Unfortunately it seems like those problems persist. If we put Vlog aside for a moment and look at a different picture profile we get a big surprise: Those color gradations look nicer than on most other compact cinema cameras we’ve seen before.

Panasonic GH5 – Picture Profile: “Natural” – Nice color gradations

As you can see in the shot above I used PP “Natural”. The results were really nice, both in 10-bit as well as in 8-bit mode. There are no pink and yellow color artefacts and colors and gradations seem correct. Even when we push that image’s contrast we see there is a lot of room for grading before the image falls apart:

Panasonic GH5 – Picture Profile: “Natural” – Contrast Pushed

The only thing we noticed was that there is again, no difference between the 10-bit recording and the 8-bit recording. When we push the contrast to the extreme (image above) we can spot where the colors break apart, but they do so on both recordings, so there is actually little to benefit in shooting 10-bit on the Panasonic GH5 whatsoever.

Note that we used a pre-production camera model, supplied by Panasonic. Firmware was: v1.00

Dynamic Range

Now that this is out of the way, let’s focus on another important camera attribute – dynamic range. A good dynamic range rating allows us to capture a larger range of shadows and highlights in high-contrast scenes – an important property when it comes to evaluating a camera intended for filmic use.

Our software was very strict with the GH5. We always take noise into account, because in all honesty, a very noisy image can only be recovered up to a limited degree as image information is simply lost. With our usual SNR threshold of 1/0.5, our software measured a rough 10 stops of usable dynamic range on the Panasonic GH5. This is a slightly sub-normal rating. Both the Sony a7S II and the Fujifilm X-T2 have a higher rating. Here’s a screenshot of the dynamic range of a few popular cameras:

Panasonic GH5 Dynamic Range Test

Panasonic GH5 Dynamic Range Test

We can see that the sensor’s total dynamic range is higher than those 10 usable stops, but in a real world scenario we think the noisy shadows will many times have to be cut away in grading. When used correctly, this camera can still produce admirable results. On a subjective scale – and if you don’t mind some noise in your images – this camera has probably more like 11 usable stops. You should just take care and avoid underexposure on the Panasonic GH5.

Noise and Low Light

In terms of noise and low light, the camera actually doesn’t perform as bad as expected when looking at that dynamic range chart at ISO 400, because in reality the camera also produces those same 10 stops of dynamic range at ISO 800. Quality only slightly degenerates at ISO 1600, and is at its breaking point at ISO 3200. At ISO 6400 the image clearly has much more noise and the color in the dark areas shifts towards yellow and magenta. You should only shoot beyond ISO 3200 with caution.

In this image you can see a 100% crop of dynamic range steps 6 to 14:

Panasonic GH5 Lowlight ISO 800 to ISO 6400

Panasonic GH5 Lowlight ISO 800 to ISO 6400

On top of that, the MFT sized sensor and MFT mount also allows us to use the Metabones Speedbooster Ultra, which gives us an exra stop of dynamic range and nice super35 shallow depth of field. So even though the out-of-thebox lowlight performance is only average, the Speedbooster can help us out a bit and improve the overall look as well.

Rolling Shutter

The Sony a7S II suffered from severe rolling shutter problems, a phenomenon also referred to as “jello”. The rolling shutter phenomenon that we see on most CMOS sensor video cameras is also present on the Panasonic GH5, but is much less severe in comparison to many other cameras.

Panasonic GH5 Rolling Shutter

This is also down to the sensor size of the GH5. The MFT-sized sensor makes rolling shutter less of a problem.

 

Image Quality

Image Detail is the aspect where the Panasonic GH5 really shines. If you disregard the 10-bit color blocking artefacts, the overall image is very organic and has very nice detail, comparable to cameras like the Fujifilm X-T2 or FS7.

Panasonic GH5 Detail

100% crops for Image Detail

In terms of aliasing, the Panasonic GH5 also performs very well. In comparison to the aformentioned cameras, though, it is a bit weaker on vertical aliasing as the lines in our 8K test chart couldn’t be separated as nicely as on the FS7 for example.

Panasonic GH5 Vertical Aliasing

Panasonic GH5 Vertical Aliasing

Panasonic GH5 vs. Sony a7S II - Subchart Image Details

Panasonic GH5 vs. Sony a7S II – Subchart Image Details

The Sony a7S II has a problem with contrast areas. This is where the camera’s image gets soft and loses detail. The Panasonic GH5, in comparison, resolves all aspects of image detail very nicely and outperforms the a7s II in that regard, as you can see in the shot above. The slight grain (noise) in the Panasonic GH5 looks nice and filmic.

When using Vlog, it is important to set Sharpnes (S) and Noise Reduction (NR) to -5. This gave us the best quality on the Panasonic GH5.

180fps Slow Motion

It is nice that the Panasonic GH5 gives us the option to shoot 180fps in HD resolution in such a small form factor. However, as on most other cameras this is much better on paper than in reality, because the true resolution and quality is actually less than 1080p.

Panasonic GH5 Slow Motion 180fps Image Quality compared to 25fps.

Panasonic GH5 Slow Motion 180fps Image Quality compared to 25fps. 100% crop.

As you can see the quality in HD resolution is very nice whereas in slow motion mode, at 180fps, the image has visibly lower resolution.

Conclusion

This has become a very long article, but some of those issues we found required some investigation and explanation. In conclusion it is no doubt that the Panasonic is a very tempting offer when you look for an affordable, compact cinema camera that can potentially produce some great looking footage. There is a 10-bit option, a 4K mode with nice details and a 180fps option. In reality though some of those features are a bit disappointing in practice.

Log gamma has become the goto option for filmmakers who want high quality cinematic results and avoid the “digital look” that some of those cameras can produce. Also it offers the most flexibility in grading and opens up a world of possibilities in terms of LUTs and camera matching. Unfortunately in our tests we saw that Vlog was a “bit” disappointing on the GH5 as it was on the GH4 before and cautiously I would go as far as calling it “unusable” for most professional applications at this time. The color artefacts and underwhelming “10-bit” performance make videos shot on this camera hard to use in post and the 10-bit mode has almost the same look and quality as the 8-bit mode.

If you can put the issues with Vlog aside and if you can settle on other picture profiles then the GH5 has some nice things in store for you. Even though most of its sensor performance (detail, dynamic range, lowlight, 180fps) is only average, the internal image stabilization was a pleasure to use for handheld applications, the peaking is very useful and special features like the histogram make this a more cinema capable camera than most other small handheld devices before.

At the end of the day, if you had your money set on 10-bit, the Panasonic GH5 is currently not the most convincing choice and personally I would still rather pick up a Sony a7S II or another one of those more affordable new MFT mirrorless cameras like the Olympus OM-D E M1 (review here) or Fujifilm X-T2 (review here). We have forwarded our remarks to Panasonic and hope they will react and fix the issues we found via a firmware update soon.

Note that we used a pre-production camera model, supplied by Panasonic. Firmware was: v1.00

Pro’s

  • MFT sensor works very well with Metabones Speedbooster Ultra for nice shallow depth of field.
  • 5-axis internal image stabilisation
  • Advanced video shooting functions like peaking & histogram
  • Very nice quality 8-bit mode! Up to 60fps in 4K
  • Good image detail
  • Up to 180fps (Quality is not 1080p though)
  • Good rolling shutter perfomance
  • Dual SD card slots
  • No recording time limit
  • Affordable price

Con’s

  • Vlog is seriously flawed at the moment
  • 10-bit 4:2:2 mode looks the same as 8-bit 4:2:0 mode
  • Dynamic range is limited
  • Lowlight is average
  • 180fps mode has much less quality than actual 1080p
  • Some Canon lenses did not work with the Metabones Speedbooster

We hope this review helped you. Please consider getting your gear from one of our recommended retailers and let us know your own thoughts and observations in the comments.

LUT B1010 applied to Panasonic GH5

cinema5D instaLUT B1010 applied to Panasonic GH5 10bit test shot as presented earlier in this test.

Panasonic GH5 LUT – cinema5D instaLUT FREE

This LUT is made for Vlog on the Panasonic GH5 only. Vlog is a paid upgrade on this camera.

This LUT is ideal for people who don’t want to tamper around with colors too much or who want to get a nice and filmic basic look in post. This LUT imitates our instaLUT B1010 that we first used on the Arri ALEXA and DJI Inspire 2 here.

Furthermore this look works to improve the GH5 skin tones in Vlog. While it won’t completely remove the bit depth problems the GH5 currently has, it squeezes the skin tones and removes oversaturated dark areas a bit.

Download:

To get our Panasonic GH5 LUT we ask only that you subscribe to our newsletter and in turn you will get the download link sent to your e-mail. This is a double opt-in and will not work with fake e-mails.
Your e-mail address stays with us. No spam or third parties and you can of course unsubscribe if you don’t like the weekly newsletter whenever you receive one. We hope you will enjoy our future content and stay on board.

Here are a few shots where you can see the LUT applied to Panasonic GH5 footage. These shots have the look applied with no other modifications.

The post How Good is the Panasonic GH5? Lab Review Reveals 10bit Flaws in Vlog + FREE GH5 LUT appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DSebastian Wöber

Duclos Lenses

Photo Credit: Duclos Lenses

Interested in taking the next step in your lens collection? Matthew Duclos from Duclos Lenses has released an enlightening video comparing some popular lines of “budget”, sub-$5000 cine primes.

With a running time of over an hour, this 2-part Facebook Live session offers Matthew’s experienced insight into the subtle aspects that differentiate 6 lines of relatively affordable cine primes. Punctuated by regular sips of his Starbucks coffee, Matthew’s video puts the following lines of cine primes head to head:

  • Canon CN-E
  • Rokinon Xeen
  • Schneider Xenon FF
  • Sigma FF High Speed
  • Tokina Cinema Vista
  • Zeiss CP.2

Duclos Lenses – The Sub-$5K Cine Prime Shootout

Budget Cine Primes Reviewed

Posted by Duclos Lenses on Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Budget Cine Primes Reviewed

Posted by Duclos Lenses on Tuesday, January 24, 2017

What Matthew states from the get-go is that even after the folks over at Duclos Lenses ran the different optics through a series of tests, it is impossible to declare one line of lenses as “the best”. Lens choice depends a lot on the kind of shooting you do and your particular needs for a project, so even though a particular focal length model in one line may be better than the competition, the advantages and disadvantages of each series as a whole make the different brands even out overall. It’s not all just about image quality.

Matthew from Duclos Lenses comparing 6 lines of budget cine primes.

What works best for one cinematographer and one scenario, is not necessarily what will work best for another.” – Matthew Duclos.

On the fence between the Rokinon Xeen and the Schneider Xenon? Then aspects such as the speed of the former vs. the smaller size and weight of the latter will probably come into consideration. Not sure if to wait for the new Sigma FF High Speed primes or go with the tried-and-tested Zeiss CP.2? Then maybe the ease of use of the exchangeable mount is a deciding factor. “Horses for courses” and all that…

Cine Primes head to head.

Another interesting point to take away from Matthew’s comparison is just how many of these lenses have an optical design simply based on previous photo lenses (hint: most of them). In addition, it is truly fascinating to see all these competing products literally laid out on the table, and especially how Sigma and Tokina, the two newcomers, bookend the competition in terms of size and weight.

Matthew and the folks at Duclos Lenses really are talented and knowledgable, so make sure you visit them over at Duclos Lenses. Also, do your inner geek a favour and check out The Cine Lens, Duclos Lenses’ sister blog packed full of lens-related content.

Has this comparison video helped you make a decision about which cine prime line to choose for your next project or investment? If you’ve compared the lenses yourself, do you agree with Matthew? Let us know in the comments below!

The post Duclos Lenses sub-$5K Cine Prime Shootout appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DFabian Chaundy

12mm is the kind of focal length you usually see stamped on fisheye lenses, or wide rectilinear Micro Four-Thirds optics that due to their 2x crop factor are equivalent to 24mm in Full Frame. But to see a rectilinear lens of this focal length for full frame? Now, that’s interesting. Today we take a look at the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D.

Laowa 12mm f/2.8

Laowa by Venus Optics is a range of very peculiar photo lenses, so much so that to call them niche would be almost an understatement. Just check out Nino’s post about the adorable Laowa 24mm Macro “Snorkel” Relay Lens here, for example.

Today we’re taking a closer look at the Laowa 12mm f/2.8. Having achieved its Kickstarter campaign goal many times over, the lens is currently available for pre-order for $949. Fortunately, we were lucky enough to get our hands on a pre-production model, with the video above being a result of some of our playing around with it.

The Laowa 12mm is a completely manual lens with clicked aperture and, in terms of build, it feels very solid, mostly due to its compact nature and strong metal casing. It also features a small removable petal-shaped lens hood, but do be aware that — as is the case with most ultra-wides — the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 needs an optional filter tray as it doesn’t have a filter thread.

post 5

One very nice detail for video shooters is the long throw of the focus ring, offering around 300° of rotation and thus allowing for more precise focusing. The focus ring also seems like it would play well with third-party lens gears for use with follow focus systems. However, note that the focus ring on our particular unit had a bit of a grind to it which we attribute solely to it being a pre-production model. Do let us know if you come across newer models and how the focus ring feels!

One last word about focus: the minimum focal distance of 18cm is just great. It really allows you to get up close to create a large interesting foreground and exaggerate the distance to the background  – often a very desirable effect in wide angle photography.

12mm is certainly a very wide focal length indeed, allowing you to achieve magnificent vistas and exaggerate the sense of depth between foreground and background. Lenses with such an extreme focal length, however, often tend to distort straight lines around the edges of the image as if the picture was bulging outwards. This is called barrel distortion, an extreme version of this being the look of a fisheye lens.

But has Laowa delivered on its promise of close-to-zero-distortion wideness? Let’s compare the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 to some popular wide-angle alternatives, all of which approximate but not quite match the wideness of the Laowa.

post 2

Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D – Barrel Distortion

As a first comparison, we chose the very popular Rokinon 14mm f/2.8. You can see the severe barrel distortion that the Rokinon exhibits. 

Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 vs Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D

The Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 zoom is another budget wide angle favourite. Despite it being designed for APS-C cameras, some full frame shooters find acceptable results with little vignetting at 16mm. I have included both options in this comparison shot. As you can see, there is still some distortion.

TokinaFFVSlaowa TokinaCropVSlaowa

Higher up the price range we find the ZEISS CP.2 15mm. A proper cine lens costing upwards of $5,000, we can certainly expect the optical quality to outperform the previous contenders. However, the image still reveals some slight barrel distortion despite still not being quite as wide as the Laowa 12mm f/2.8.

ZeissVSlaowa

With edges straight as a ruler, the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D certainly delivers what it promises. But what about the other aspects of its optical qualities?

Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D – Vignetting

The left half of the image below shows the lens wide open, which does exhibit slight vignetting. However, this is a phenomenon common to most if not all lenses, and is greatly reduced by stopping down one click to f/4: notice the right side of the image and how the shade of background gray is much more even from the centre to the edges.

Vignetting

Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D – Sharpness

In terms of centre sharpness, the lens performs great from the get go: even wide open the centre of the image is tack sharp. 

center-sharpness

Next, corner sharpness. In the extract from the top right corner of the chart, the image is just a little bit softer in the corner when wide open, but step down to f/5.6 or f/8 and the results are much better. In fact, even f/4 is very usable! Of course, APS-C and Super35 users would be working exclusively with the sweet spot of the lens, which would still prove to be very wide even after a 1.5x or 1.6x sensor crop.

Conclusion

All in all, the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 really delivers what it promises. 12mm is incredibly wide — perhaps even too wide for some uses! — and the unique selling point of this no-distortion lens makes it ideal for architectural and real estate shooters. Also, the wideness can help make the shake in handheld shots a little less noticeable, and help make gimbal shots even more glidey and floaty. Sharp, solid, compact, fast and optically outstanding – it’s difficult to find negative aspects about the lens!

Sure, it would be nice to be able to use threaded filters and keep the footprint of this lens compact, and in terms of price, some may consider it a little steep for a fully manual photo lens. Of course, other wide-angle favourites such as the Canon 11-24 f/4 go for a lot more money, so a good alternative in this price range is perhaps the Tamron SP 15 – 30mm / 2,8 Di VC USD. Offering full frame coverage and image stabilisation, this fast ultra-wide zoom does offer all the bells and whistles, but weighs a hefty 1100g, almost twice as much as the Laowa.

So there you have it! Does this lens sound like something you’d like to have in your kit bag? Let us know in the comments below!

      

The post Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D Full-Frame Lens – Hands-on Review and Comparison appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DFabian Chaundy

12mm is the kind of focal length you usually see stamped on fisheye lenses, or wide rectilinear Micro Four-Thirds optics that due to their 2x crop factor are equivalent to 24mm in Full Frame. But to see a rectilinear lens of this focal length for full frame? Now, that’s interesting. Today we take a look at the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D.

Laowa 12mm f/2.8

Laowa by Venus Optics is a range of very peculiar photo lenses, so much so that to call them niche would be almost an understatement. Just check out Nino’s post about the adorable Laowa 24mm Macro “Snorkel” Relay Lens here, for example.

Today we’re taking a closer look at the Laowa 12mm f/2.8. Having achieved its Kickstarter campaign goal many times over, the lens is currently available for pre-order for $949. Fortunately, we were lucky enough to get our hands on a pre-production model, with the video above being a result of some of our playing around with it.

The Laowa 12mm is a completely manual lens with clicked aperture and, in terms of build, it feels very solid, mostly due to its compact nature and strong metal casing. It also features a small removable petal-shaped lens hood, but do be aware that — as is the case with most ultra-wides — the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 needs an optional filter tray as it doesn’t have a filter thread.

post 5

One very nice detail for video shooters is the long throw of the focus ring, offering around 300° of rotation and thus allowing for more precise focusing. The focus ring also seems like it would play well with third-party lens gears for use with follow focus systems. However, note that the focus ring on our particular unit had a bit of a grind to it which we attribute solely to it being a pre-production model. Do let us know if you come across newer models and how the focus ring feels!

One last word about focus: the minimum focal distance of 18cm is just great. It really allows you to get up close to create a large interesting foreground and exaggerate the distance to the background  – often a very desirable effect in wide angle photography.

12mm is certainly a very wide focal length indeed, allowing you to achieve magnificent vistas and exaggerate the sense of depth between foreground and background. Lenses with such an extreme focal length, however, often tend to distort straight lines around the edges of the image as if the picture was bulging outwards. This is called barrel distortion, an extreme version of this being the look of a fisheye lens.

But has Laowa delivered on its promise of close-to-zero-distortion wideness? Let’s compare the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 to some popular wide-angle alternatives, all of which approximate but not quite match the wideness of the Laowa.

post 2

Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D – Barrel Distortion

As a first comparison, we chose the very popular Rokinon 14mm f/2.8. You can see the severe barrel distortion that the Rokinon exhibits. 

Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 vs Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D

The Tokina 11-16mm f/2.8 zoom is another budget wide angle favourite. Despite it being designed for APS-C cameras, some full frame shooters find acceptable results with little vignetting at 16mm. I have included both options in this comparison shot. As you can see, there is still some distortion.

TokinaFFVSlaowa TokinaCropVSlaowa

Higher up the price range we find the ZEISS CP.2 15mm. A proper cine lens costing upwards of $5,000, we can certainly expect the optical quality to outperform the previous contenders. However, the image still reveals some slight barrel distortion despite still not being quite as wide as the Laowa 12mm f/2.8.

ZeissVSlaowa

With edges straight as a ruler, the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D certainly delivers what it promises. But what about the other aspects of its optical qualities?

Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D – Vignetting

The left half of the image below shows the lens wide open, which does exhibit slight vignetting. However, this is a phenomenon common to most if not all lenses, and is greatly reduced by stopping down one click to f/4: notice the right side of the image and how the shade of background gray is much more even from the centre to the edges.

Vignetting

Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D – Sharpness

In terms of centre sharpness, the lens performs great from the get go: even wide open the centre of the image is tack sharp. 

center-sharpness

Next, corner sharpness. In the extract from the top right corner of the chart, the image is just a little bit softer in the corner when wide open, but step down to f/5.6 or f/8 and the results are much better. In fact, even f/4 is very usable! Of course, APS-C and Super35 users would be working exclusively with the sweet spot of the lens, which would still prove to be very wide even after a 1.5x or 1.6x sensor crop.

Conclusion

All in all, the Laowa 12mm f/2.8 really delivers what it promises. 12mm is incredibly wide — perhaps even too wide for some uses! — and the unique selling point of this no-distortion lens makes it ideal for architectural and real estate shooters. Also, the wideness can help make the shake in handheld shots a little less noticeable, and help make gimbal shots even more glidey and floaty. Sharp, solid, compact, fast and optically outstanding – it’s difficult to find negative aspects about the lens!

Sure, it would be nice to be able to use threaded filters and keep the footprint of this lens compact, and in terms of price, some may consider it a little steep for a fully manual photo lens. Of course, other wide-angle favourites such as the Canon 11-24 f/4 go for a lot more money, so a good alternative in this price range is perhaps the Tamron SP 15 – 30mm / 2,8 Di VC USD. Offering full frame coverage and image stabilisation, this fast ultra-wide zoom does offer all the bells and whistles, but weighs a hefty 1100g, almost twice as much as the Laowa.

So there you have it! Does this lens sound like something you’d like to have in your kit bag? Let us know in the comments below!

      

The post Laowa 12mm f/2.8 ZERO-D Full-Frame Lens – Hands-on Review and Comparison appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author News – cinema5DFabian Chaundy

Comment on this article at the EOSHD Forum

Micro Four Thirds is increasingly going up-market and into pro territory, and unfortunately new Panasonic and Olympus cameras are getting more and more expensive by the day. Thankfully the G85 is a pro camera without a pro price – it represents a genuine advance over the Panasonic GH4 with cleaner low light performance, better automatic white balance and of course 5 [...]

The post Panasonic G85 review – is there any need to get an Olympus E-M1 Mark II for video? appeared first on EOSHD.

All credit is given to author EOSHDAndrew Reid (EOSHD)

Comment on this article at the EOSHD Forum

Micro Four Thirds is increasingly going up-market and into pro territory, and unfortunately new Panasonic and Olympus cameras are getting more and more expensive by the day. Thankfully the G85 is a pro camera without a pro price – it represents a genuine advance over the Panasonic GH4 with cleaner low light performance, better automatic white balance and of course 5 [...]

The post Panasonic G85 review – is there any need to get an Olympus E-M1 Mark II for video? appeared first on EOSHD.

All credit is given to author EOSHDAndrew Reid (EOSHD)

Comment on this article at the EOSHD Forum

Micro Four Thirds is increasingly going up-market and into pro territory, and unfortunately new Panasonic and Olympus cameras are getting more and more expensive by the day. Thankfully the G85 is a pro camera without a pro price – it represents a genuine advance over the Panasonic GH4 with cleaner low light performance, better automatic white balance and of course 5 [...]

The post Panasonic G85 review – is there any need to get an Olympus E-M1 Mark II for video? appeared first on EOSHD.

All credit is given to author EOSHDAndrew Reid (EOSHD)