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View Full Version : GH2 Buy a second GH2, or deal with color matching in post?



dishan
03-25-2012, 02:51 PM
Ok, I need some advice guys.

I own a T2i and GH2, and use both for dual-camera shoots. I'm not the best at color correction/matching, but after enough trial-and-error with color curves in post, I usually get it to look similar enough to look good.

I was recently asked to film and edit a series of 30 lectures given over 4 weeks, and they want a two camera setup. Since this is a rather large project with over 10 hours of footage, I'm wondering if I can't significantly speed up my workflow by purchasing another camera that would better match the coloring I currently get without much work in post.

Another T2i is relatively cheap, but I like the detail of the GH2, not to mention some of these lectures can easily be more than 12 minutes (sure, I can just restart the video recording and switch to camera B during that gap, but its better to just avoid the whole recording limitation on canon).

Should I get another GH2? Or would a GH1 be sufficient in getting the same look and coloring? I see those are pretty cheap now, (and the GH2 is pretty expensive- I got mine during that crazy sale a couple of months ago) but I'm not sure how well they compare.

Also, do I need to purchase an identical lens to use on both? Or does that not matter as much? One angle will be closer up than the other, so the DOF and look of the shot might be different enough already to not require exactly the same lens on both. Perhaps just one in the same family?

ErikTande
03-25-2012, 02:59 PM
I'd just stick with what you have. Once you color correct one shot of the second camera you can just apply the same adjustment to all the other clips from it.

Like you mentioned, even if you have 2 identical cameras, different lenses can have different color as well.

dishan
03-25-2012, 03:13 PM
I'd just stick with what you have. Once you color correct one shot of the second camera you can just apply the same adjustment to all the other clips from it.

Like you mentioned, even if you have 2 identical cameras, different lenses can have different color as well.

I thought about that. But I know from my own experiences that if they are not shot at the same time, something inevitably changes. The lights maybe aren't in the same location, maybe more ambient sunlight leaking from a window and reflecting off the walls, etc... Or maybe the guy wears a blue tie this time, and blue is one of those colors that appears different in GH world versus Canon, and he didn't wear it last time so I didn't anticipate or correct for it.

Also, I'm concerned about the time limit. Some of these lectures will go on for nearly 30 minutes, which means the T2i is workable (using the workflow mentioned earlier) but for 30+ of these, it just seems like a hassle!

Normally I'd agree with you, as I've been just using what I have to shoot dozens of these in the past. But I'm looking at recording 30 of these coming up, and the work and rendering time behind it (not to mention additional storage) is starting to get daunting to me.

blues
03-25-2012, 03:47 PM
What is your editing format output ,prores?

dishan
03-25-2012, 04:37 PM
Do you mean what is my intermediate format? Because for projects like this, I tend not to use one...
I usually edit natively in Premiere unless VFX or serious grading require an intermediate format first.

I'll probably be importing from the card directly to my timeline, applying a slight grade and titles, cutting back and forth between cameras, then rendering for web upload. Since I'm going to be doing this so many times over the next few weeks, I'd like to reduce any extra workflow steps possible (including matching cameras before grade).

ErikTande
03-25-2012, 05:27 PM
Yeah, Premiere is great, it handles the footage natively.

If you're going to have a lot of paid work then I would definitely get two of the same camera if it will significantly speed up your workflow.

Zephyrnoid
03-25-2012, 05:39 PM
"different lenses can have different color as well."
By that much ???

dishan
03-25-2012, 06:34 PM
In my experience, its mostly different contrast.

I would guess that if I'm using two of the same class of lens (such as, two vintage FDs) it would look pretty similar.


Anyway, yes, Premiere is great for native editing, however I've found that since CS5 they've removed the color match tool, which has made color correction a very tedious process for me.

brunerww
03-25-2012, 07:15 PM
Dishan - I had a T2i, and now I have a stock GH1 - and a stock GH2 with v1.1.

I have been able to reproduce 'Canon colors' on the GHs in-camera with Dynamic film mode, +2 on the saturation and moving the auto white balance down towards the magenta and left a couple of clicks. Easier than color matching in post, IMO.

That said, a 12 minute camera is no fun when shooting events (part of the reason I got rid of the T2i).

As long as the light in the lecture hall is sufficient to keep you below ISO1600, I would get a GH1 body. It will run just as long as the GH2, and in good light, will give you colors that match your GH2's (here's a used one, with the 14-140 lens at Adorama for $749. You could sell the lens for ~$500 and end up with a GH1 body for a couple of hundred $).

EDIT: I can't get the link to the Adorama used pages to work - please go to Adorama (http://www.adorama.com/?KBID=66297) and type in "Panasonic Dmc-gh1" (no quotation marks), and it should take you to the item.

Cheers,

Bill

dishan
03-25-2012, 07:46 PM
Dishan - I had a T2i, and now I have a stock GH1 - and a stock GH2 with v1.1.

I have been able to reproduce 'Canon colors' on the GHs in-camera with Dynamic film mode, +2 on the saturation and moving the auto white balance down towards the magenta and left a couple of clicks. Easier than color matching in post, IMO.

That said, a 12 minute camera is no fun when shooting events (part of the reason I got rid of the T2i).

As long as the light in the lecture hall is sufficient to keep you below ISO1600, I would get a GH1 body. It will run just as long as the GH2, and in good light, will give you colors that match your GH2's (here's a used one, with the 14-140 lens at Adorama for $749 (http://www.adorama.com/US480995.html?kbid=66297). You could sell the lens for ~$500 and end up with a GH1 body for a couple of hundred $).

Cheers,

Bill

For a couple of hundred bucks, I'm totally in! That link is dead, though.

The coloring is the same between the two?
Yes, it would be well lit, I think in the past I've been able to use ISO 640. Higher than that, the GH1 has banding problems or something, right?
How close is the color and image between the two? I'd really like to see for myself if I could... is there any way you could shot me some ungraded clips taken of the same scene with both cameras?

brunerww
03-26-2012, 05:19 AM
For a couple of hundred bucks, I'm totally in! That link is dead, though.

The coloring is the same between the two?
Yes, it would be well lit, I think in the past I've been able to use ISO 640. Higher than that, the GH1 has banding problems or something, right?
How close is the color and image between the two? I'd really like to see for myself if I could... is there any way you could shot me some ungraded clips taken of the same scene with both cameras?

Sadly, I couldn't get the link to work either, but the camera is still there. Go to Adorama (http://www.adorama.com/?KBID=66297) and type "Panasonic Dmc-gh1" (without the quotation marks) into the search box. The $749 used GH1 with the 14-140 should come up.

Here is a color comparison of the two cameras I shot a few minutes ago and threw together in Movie Maker. Hope it's helpful:


http://vimeo.com/39192744

Bill

dishan
03-26-2012, 11:12 AM
AWESOME!

Thanks so much for sharing this!

The FOV changes a bit (which is expected I think because the GH2 has that multiple aspect ratio sensor and the GH1 does not), and the brightness changes ever so slightly... however I think this is more than workable as a multi-cam setup without any color matching required. Excellent!

I'm ordering one of those used GH1's with the 14-140 right now... Coming from a GH2, is there anything in particular I should know? Or is it pretty self explanatory to set it up?

brunerww
03-26-2012, 11:28 AM
...Coming from a GH2, is there anything in particular I should know? Or is it pretty self explanatory to set it up?

You should have no trouble setting it up - it's 95% the same camera. Coming from the GH2, I've never even looked at the GH1 manual. Most of the changes that you'll notice day-to-day are ergonomic. The GH1 movie record button is on the back (where the thumb wheel is on the GH2) and the GH2's thumb wheel is a 'right trigger finger wheel' on the front of the GH1.

When I'm using the GH1 I do miss ETC, live HDMI out, 1080/30p and the ability to autofocus with my old 4/3 lens - but it's a fabulous camera for the money and a great B cam for the GH2.

I hope you enjoy it and good luck on your upcoming shoot!

Bill

dishan
03-26-2012, 10:01 PM
You should have no trouble setting it up - it's 95% the same camera. Coming from the GH2, I've never even looked at the GH1 manual. Most of the changes that you'll notice day-to-day are ergonomic. The GH1 movie record button is on the back (where the thumb wheel is on the GH2) and the GH2's thumb wheel is a 'right trigger finger wheel' on the front of the GH1.

When I'm using the GH1 I do miss ETC, live HDMI out, 1080/30p and the ability to autofocus with my old 4/3 lens - but it's a fabulous camera for the money and a great B cam for the GH2.

I hope you enjoy it and good luck on your upcoming shoot!

Bill

What about hacking the GH1? I've heard some models aren't hackable anyway, but is the hack something I need for decent quality to compare to a GH2? Granted, my GH2 isn't hacked either, so I'm ok with it out-of-the box like that if the GH1 will look similar. I feel like it will, but want to double check first.

DanielRutter
03-27-2012, 06:40 AM
To save buying a new camera, why not just hack the T2i and overcome that 12 minute recording limit?

Thanks for the info about the GH1 and GH2 being almost identical. I'll be buying a GH2 soon, and keeping my GH1 as a B cam.

M. Gilden
03-27-2012, 09:49 AM
I'm not entirely familiar with it, but doesn't the Gh1 need a hack to film in 24p? something about pulldown?

Also, canon can't remove the record limit with Magic Lantern. It can just auto restart, which loses a couple of seconds.

brunerww
03-27-2012, 10:00 AM
What about hacking the GH1? I've heard some models aren't hackable anyway, but is the hack something I need for decent quality to compare to a GH2? Granted, my GH2 isn't hacked either, so I'm ok with it out-of-the box like that if the GH1 will look similar. I feel like it will, but want to double check first.

All GH1s and GH2s are hackable (thanks, Vitaliy!). Both of my cameras are stock, though, and 1080/24p looks pretty darned good out-of-the-box. Nothing against the hack, I just don't trust myself to do it.

As for 24p on the GH1 - it's really recorded at 60i with a pulldown - but it intercuts just fine with the GH2's 'true' 24p. Both clips in my little color test were at 1080/24p, for example - and they matched pretty well, I thought.

Best,

Bill

dishan
03-27-2012, 06:56 PM
Oh man, I just picked up a stock GH1 and tried using it as a B-camera (perk of living right outside of NYC, items from Adorama and B&H come the next day). I didn't know anything about this 60i wrapper business! What a bunch of baloney!

In your sample above it looked fine, but I think that's mostly becuase the camera is stationary. If there is a lot of motion, panning, etc, you can totally see the effects of frame blending (not to mention it doesn't like living in a 24p timeline).

So there's a hack to make it native 24, right? I'll totally have to go that route if I'm going to use it as a B cam.
In the mean time, what's the best way for me to remove the pulldown from footage I shot today? I'm searching through threads, but so much information seems outdated, its hard to find a current discussion on the topic. Also, does anyone have any links to clear tutorials for hacking the GH1 with 24p?
(I know, I know... search... but seriously guys, there are SO many threads on this topic that all say "search for the answers", which is ironic isn't it. Its so hard to find because everyone is busy saying SEARCH! Might I suggest that a mod clean up the stickies here or something?)

brunerww
03-28-2012, 04:09 PM
Oh man, I just picked up a stock GH1 and tried using it as a B-camera (perk of living right outside of NYC, items from Adorama and B&H come the next day). I didn't know anything about this 60i wrapper business! What a bunch of baloney!

In your sample above it looked fine, but I think that's mostly becuase the camera is stationary. If there is a lot of motion, panning, etc, you can totally see the effects of frame blending (not to mention it doesn't like living in a 24p timeline).

So there's a hack to make it native 24, right? I'll totally have to go that route if I'm going to use it as a B cam.
In the mean time, what's the best way for me to remove the pulldown from footage I shot today? I'm searching through threads, but so much information seems outdated, its hard to find a current discussion on the topic. Also, does anyone have any links to clear tutorials for hacking the GH1 with 24p?
(I know, I know... search... but seriously guys, there are SO many threads on this topic that all say "search for the answers", which is ironic isn't it. Its so hard to find because everyone is busy saying SEARCH! Might I suggest that a mod clean up the stickies here or something?)


dishan - glad you could test it out before your big shoot! Sorry the wrapper is getting in your way. If you use Edius, it's pretty easy to remove. Here is how to do it: http://vimeo.com/groups/gh1/videos/9699255
Most other NLEs can't do it, so you'll have to use Cineform before importing into your editor. Here is how it's done: http://support.cineform.com/entries/515403-inverse-telecine-processing-removing-pull-down
Free Cineform trial download here: http://cineform.com/downloads
Sadly, all of this takes time. Better if it comes out of the camera unwrapped.
When/if you decide to hack, suggest you start here: http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?243813-Blackout-Powell-Native-24p-Patch-GH1-FTW
Hope this is helpful,

Bill

dishan
03-28-2012, 07:30 PM
dishan - glad you could test it out before your big shoot! Sorry the wrapper is getting in your way. If you use Edius, it's pretty easy to remove. Here is how to do it: http://vimeo.com/groups/gh1/videos/9699255
Most other NLEs can't do it, so you'll have to use Cineform before importing into your editor. Here is how it's done: http://support.cineform.com/entries/515403-inverse-telecine-processing-removing-pull-down
Free Cineform trial download here: http://cineform.com/downloads
Sadly, all of this takes time. Better if it comes out of the camera unwrapped.
When/if you decide to hack, suggest you start here: http://www.dvxuser.com/V6/showthread.php?243813-Blackout-Powell-Native-24p-Patch-GH1-FTW
Hope this is helpful,

Bill

Thanks, I actually held my breath and just tried using ptool earlier today.
Wow, what a breeze! I mean, it was way simpler than I thought- everyone should do this as soon as they get the camera! Every option has a little side window with information, explaining exactly what it is and why you may / may not want it, and even has suggestions for bitrates, etc!

I had a recording session for a musician, and brought along my freshly "hacked" GH1. I've gotta say, it performs perfectly, and actualy some of the shots I got with it were better than the ones I got with the GH2 (mostly because I was half expecting them to be "throw away" shots and got more creative with angles). So, I was really happy I had it! They appear to be native 24p now, just like the GH2, and since I upped the bitrate they may even be higher detail as well!

I've got to hack the GH2 next! Not that I really need to, I've been fairly happy with it out of the box, but because I can!

Anyway, thanks so much for your recommendation and encouragement with the GH1. This was a very good idea indeed!