Attention serious documentary filmmakers! - Page 4 at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Most Recent Additions... > Micro / POV Camera Systems

Micro / POV Camera Systems
Covering the GoPro HERO and other small Point-Of-View video cameras.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old August 5th, 2012, 10:00 PM   #46
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Posts: 319
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

GH1 or GH2 i awesome hacked. I just shot the entire 2days of interviews and on-water ocean racing footy with a GH2 and 14-140 HD kit lens, no fails in 500clips using FlowMotion settings. Check these screen grabs straight off the ungraded 1080 interlaced video via VLC. Natural light thru a window and a mobile School White Board used as a bounce board on the left hand side...haha improvising!! But awesome video camera. CLICK ON THE THUMBNAILS and then click twice to full size
Attached Thumbnails
Attention serious documentary filmmakers!-simon.png   Attention serious documentary filmmakers!-sean.png  

Attention serious documentary filmmakers!-mickael.png  
Ian Newland is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 9th, 2012, 10:25 PM   #47
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: williamsport, pa
Posts: 604
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

How easy is it to edit this footage?
Once the hack is done, can you later switch back to the default camera video settings?
How much hacked footage can a 32GB SD card hold?
Lynne Whelden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 10th, 2012, 12:56 AM   #48
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 8,222
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

Hi Lynne

It all depends on what hack is installed ..I have a modest one that shoots around an average of 28 mbps so in AVCHD on a 32gb card you could probably squeeze in about 2.5 -3 hours depending on the footage. My proper cameras run at 24mbps variable bitrate as well and I get 90 minutes on a 16GB card. With the extreme hacks (not really advised unless you are prepared to put up with cameras crashing) will eat up card space faster!! You can install the original firmware back into the camera instead of the hacked firmware (some guys do this if the cam has a warranty issue) but there really is no need once a modest firmware hack is installed. On my version the footage is pretty pristine but then again it doesn't need to go to a local TV network for broadcast.

Chris
Chris Harding is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 10th, 2012, 07:14 AM   #49
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: williamsport, pa
Posts: 604
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

Has this hack been tested so that users have determined what the "sweet spot" is? In other words, if the normal rate is, (I'm not sure), 24 mbps, does bumping up to 28 produce major improvements? Or are only very subtle changes noted? Is its normal bit rate that "bad" that folks "must" hack it or does it actually produce amazing (or at least, very good) video without hacking at all?
I'm assuming these higher bit rates can easily be handled by MBP laptops using FCP, for example?
Is there a lot of excitement about this particular hack and camera because it's the "cheapest" DSLR out there that can pull this off? Or is this just one of many such cameras in this price and gear range? Lots of questions, I know. I've just never considered such a camera as potentially useful for backpacking videos (due to size and weight). But I must admit its erg. design (the fact it can hang from one's neck on a strap) could work to my advantage where an ordinary camcorder couldn't.
Does it offer zebra stripes for exposure or is it only histogram-driven?
Has any web site emerged as the go-to place (besides this one, of course, which is my all time favorite) for fans of this camera and hack? Or is this too early in the camera's existence?
Lynne Whelden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 10th, 2012, 08:38 AM   #50
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 8,222
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

Hi Lynne

To be perfectly honest I made a slight boo boo a few years ago and was shooting a Realty home simply to record condition and left my HMC82 in HA mode which is 17 mbps and the next day I forgot to change the bitrate to 24!! I couldn't tell any difference in that and previous footage and even at 1920x1080 either bitrate looked pretty much perfect. Unless you are shooting for a 3rd party who is insisting on a specific format and bitrate then I very much doubt whether you could tell which was which!!

The more drastic the hack on a GH camera the more likely it is to crash or lockup ..I have read of guys shooting with a killer hack that runs the cam at something like 175mbps but the whole idea (apart for seeing how hard you can push it) is to get nice footage and flawless reliability!! For docs and such you would probably be quite happy with the footage from a standard camera!! Mine was hacked simply because the PAL models have a 30 min record limit..my other minor mods include NTSC/PAL selection and allowing a aftermarket battery to be used.

Both the GH 1 and GH2 can be used for great video straight out of box if that suits you but a low end hack might suit you for a couple of extra features. The DVX forum has extensive posts on hacks!!

Just also remember a GH isn't as easy to use as a camcorder at all...it's a different animal..even at controlled weddings my choice of which camera to use puts my GH1 at the bottom of the list as it's fiddly compared to normal camcorders - you often need focus correction and there is NO zoom button so you need to learn how to zoom with the lens ring and keep focus!!

Chris

Chris
Chris Harding is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 10th, 2012, 09:18 AM   #51
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: williamsport, pa
Posts: 604
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

Lots to think about!
I'm at a crossroad. Do I opt out for a Hero 2/Canon Powershot S100 combo (light and portable, wearable on my sleeve literally, for a new angle and shooting option) and go for the "extreme sports" look (even tho' it's "only" a backpacking video) and everything that goes along with that look (blurry video, flat colors, subpar audio)?
Or do I go with a "tried and true" albeit small Sony camcorder with all the limitations that comes with that, limitations I'm well aware of?
Or do I explore an entirely new direction, that of the GH2 with its fiddlely controls and focusing and ergonomic issues?
The classic dilemma of the age we live in.
Lynne Whelden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 10th, 2012, 09:59 AM   #52
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 8,222
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

Hi Lynne

The real answer is to do what the doc pros do..take along a camera crew!!!

However if it were me I would still opt for an adventure cam and maybe an extra DVR for good audio. It's tough enough making your way down a rocky trail without a camera but trying to hold a camcorder or DSLR while you slip and slide down a rocky bank isn't my idea of fun...a GoPro on a chest mount still would be my choice..I rather like the idea of being able to film the actual hike ..the rough with the smooth. Then you can always take it off and have it on a tiny stand or wrap a gorilla pod legs around a tree branch for more formal interviews when confronted with the Indians of the Amazon rain forest.

Then again, that's just me!!!

Chris
Chris Harding is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 10th, 2012, 01:22 PM   #53
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: williamsport, pa
Posts: 604
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

chris
I tested the Hero 2 on my chest...it wasn't pretty. The viewer can only take a few seconds of that trash before they feel sick.
Now I'm wondering whether the GH2 fastened to my upper chest (surely there's got to be a good harness/release developed years ago for press photogs or tourists even), with its stabilization circuits engaged, would end up producing a more pleasing viewer experience.
Add to that the knowledge that POV cameras are producing rather crappy images whereas the GH2 stands a chance of "nicer" ones. That fact alone can serve as a motivating factor when you're out there sweating away under the hot desert sun.
I'm wondering too if the audio (did you say it's only available as a hack?) is good enough that I could dispense with a DVR (I was looking at the Sony M1) and simply record via a mic mounted on the camera?

So weight-wise, a GH2 w/ lens and battery is about 20 ounces.
Compared to a decked out Hero2 (8 oz.) along with aback-up Powershot S100 (8 ounces) and a Sony M1 audio recorder(8 ounces).
It's about the same.
Lynne Whelden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 10th, 2012, 08:11 PM   #54
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 8,222
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

Hi Lynne

I doubt whether any OIS system would handle the bouncing up and down on one's chest. Maybe you need to create the "Hike Mount" My only real reason for opting for an adventure cam was it can be left to do it's own thing. Now I'm invisaging serious hiking as scrambling down near vertical, slippery tracks and having to hang onto tree branches and you make your way to your destination....on the other hand you might be looking at a well kept wilderness trail that's almost level and a child could easily walk thru it with no assistance .... makes a huge difference to what system you need to have....the GH cams certainly would be great for nature rambles but not for going down the side of a mountain!

AFAIK the audio is pretty much OK as standard on the GH series..the built in stereo mic is quite amazing and you need to try it before going out and buying an extra mic!!!

Chris
Chris Harding is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 10th, 2012, 09:18 PM   #55
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: williamsport, pa
Posts: 604
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

Regarding audio, I've routinely been disappointed by the hissy, noisy preamps found not only in cameras but in the hand-held recorders under $500. It would take one special camera to convince me otherwise!

The trail I'm hoping to do is the Israel National Trail. Much of it is "urban" style (dirt roads) and a 1/3 is desert that has some steep climbs up and down ladders or even rock cliffs in a few places. But it wouldn't be considered wild by any stretch. A challenging, very warm 600 miles which would take probably a couple months total.

I checked that dvx users site. So much GH2 info spread out all over the place, it's rather overwhelming.
Lynne Whelden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 11th, 2012, 01:39 PM   #56
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: williamsport, pa
Posts: 604
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

What brings me back down to earth after considering the high quality images the GH2 produces...is knowing that the larger a camera is, the less likely I am to have it handy when I really "need" to take a picture!

That's why the Canon Powershot S100 caught my eye. The reviews I read said they left the clunky DSLRs at home but the Powershot went in their pocket everywhere.

Can anyone convince me the GH2 is smaller and more portable than any other DSLR out there?
Lynne Whelden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12th, 2012, 03:12 AM   #57
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Norwich, Norfolk, UK
Posts: 3,445
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynne Whelden View Post
Can anyone convince me the GH2 is smaller and more portable than any other DSLR out there?
It's small but not that small. Have you actually handled one?
Nigel Barker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12th, 2012, 04:29 AM   #58
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 8,222
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

I personally think it would be a pain to carry on a hike...even with a compact lens it's still not as easy to carry as a small camcorder and you certainly start annoying me after a few miles!! You seriously would want something that you can "holster" and then take out when you need it. The traditional SLR shape also makes it a bit difficult to find a spot for...In fact a cam like the Panasonic TM900 would probably fit a lot neater in a backpack as it has a more streamlined body and integral lens with no awkward protrusions like a still camera seems to have. You could actually make a pouch on your belt for a small camcorder and it wouldn't hamper walking whereas the "T" shape of a still/video cam wouldn't sit as well.

I still like the idea of a Hero and the realism some reality footage while you walk would give you!! In fact using the GoPro head mount would also give some nice footage !!

Chris
Chris Harding is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12th, 2012, 06:41 AM   #59
Major Player
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Reno, NV
Posts: 553
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
a cam like the Panasonic TM900 would probably fit a lot neater in a backpack as it has a more streamlined body and integral lens with no awkward protrusions
The TM900 sounds ideal for bringing along for a hike in the desert. The 3 sensor design yields an extremely sharp and high-quality image outdoors in good light. If you are feeling lucky, you could also consider the sister model HS900 with built-in 220GB HD that would easily hold two months of footage. While the internal HD might crash, but it could also be backed up to another HD every night without juggling SD cards.
Eric Olson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 12th, 2012, 07:18 AM   #60
Major Player
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: williamsport, pa
Posts: 604
Re: Attention serious documentary filmmakers!

All good points.
No, I haven't actually handled a GH2. I've only seen it in video presentations.
When hiking all day, all things dangling around one's neck or off a hip become very annoying, as you pointed out. I actually have envisioned and experimented with a wrist-mount of sorts (actually a double-layered sweat band with a slit cut into it, into which I can slide the Powershot, thus having it literally "on hand" all day and ready at a moment's notice). It's still a bit clunky because that's a half pound attached to a wrist...imagine wearing a 1/2 pound watch!
What my hiking videos need are more spontaneous shots, I've determined. How many times does something happen in front of you (an animal presents itself, you happen upon someone on the trail) but the camera is buried in the pack?
But it's juggling two competing needs...the need to shoot sudden moments and the need to shoot pretty scenic shots.
All the while, keeping everything light, light, light. (Carrying an extra HD doesn't exactly fit into that scheme.)
Lynne Whelden is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Most Recent Additions... > Micro / POV Camera Systems

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:16 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network