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Old June 13th, 2012, 11:59 AM   #721
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Hi Luc,

Thanks for the update. The AGC+SET thing at -6 dB test looks disappointing - I wonder how this is supposed to work then. Anyone know?

Cannot really tell from your video about the temelapse quality as I am out and about and only viewing on my Samsung Tablet. ILast year I did try an extended timelapse with my TM900 and I will say that I was so unhappy with the quality of it when I got home that it never even made it into a family video. I ONLY ever use it in 1080p50 now. Each camera has strengths and weaknesses - get to learn them well and use the best tool.

Sure, low light performance on the TM900 is not stella. What do you expect with 3 small chips! This kind of thing is all relative. I can tell you it trounces my old Sony HC1 and a friends Sony V1 that were my main tools a few years ago. If you need good low light get a Canon 5D Mkiii.

Put 32GB of RAM into my Mac Pro this morning. Should be interesting to see how that helps things get along!
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Old June 13th, 2012, 05:24 PM   #722
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

The AGC/Set thing is definitely strange. I did a few quick tests myself after reading the prior posts. My conclusion is that the AGC button on the Set screen has virtually no effect. When one enters the SET screen, picks a value for manual recording, then whether or not one hits the AGC button on that screen before exiting does not seem to make much if any difference. The camera appears to basically stay in manual recording mode whether the AGC button is enabled or not. I thought maybe the AGC set function might not work with an external microphone but work with the internal mic. But you get basically the same results if you use the internal mic or an external mic.

BTW, there are some differences in the way that the camera is reporting levels in dB and the way in which the Rode VMP does. The 10dB cut setting on the VMP is equivalent to reducing the manual volume setting on the TM900 by 20dB. The Rode must be a voltage based measurement whereas the TM900 is a power measurement.

In some ways the VMP isn't a particularly good match for the TM900. The VMP's sensitivity is ~20dB(TM900 reference dB) greater than the internal microphone. This causes it to be much too hot for the TM-900 electronics when the Rode is in the 0dB position. (With the VMP in 0dB position and the TM900 set to manual @ 0dB, a whisper at 6 feet will cause the TM-900 to clip.) You could set the TM900 to -21dB to make the Rode similar to the internal microphone at 0dB, but this won't allow you to go into loud environments and the TM900 electronics may not be distortionless when applying this much attenuation. Consequently my thought is that the Rode should always be used in the -10dB position with the TM-900.

I've also had problems with the Rode being boomy. It seems to overemphasize the lows in many situations. Note that the Rode is very directional for the midrange and high frequencies. It is not directional with respect to the lows. Consequently it is possible to get attenuation of the midrange relative to the lows if the microphone is not pointed directly at the single source of all the sound. I find the Rode to work much better with the low filter applied.

I am often frustrated by situations where I set up my primary microphone to record at a level that optimizes what is happening in a stage performance. But later I'll discover that loud clapping or other loud events caused the audio to end up clipping, thereby making some of the audio unusable. When shooting with my PD-170 in the past I often used two microphones. One was set to AGC and the other was set to the manual setting that I thought would work well. That way I always ended up with something that was usable. Of course on the TM-900 the audio level controls are very limited, so this setup isn't possible. The solution that I am exploring now is to use a second microphone besides the VMC. The second microphone will be a much less sensitive microphone or connected through an old Beachtek unit that I happen to have so that I can reduce the amplitude of its signal by 10-15dB relative to the VMC. I'll use a splitter to run the two microphone signals into the TM-900 external microphone connector (the splitter has to be the right type to split the mini stereo plug into 2 separate mono channels). In theory this should work well for me as one of the two microphones should capture good audio. I'll let you know how my experiments come out and maybe what my final setup looks like. (Beachtek + special bracket to hold 2nd microphone).
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Old June 13th, 2012, 06:03 PM   #723
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

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Originally Posted by Andy Wilkinson View Post
Put 32GB of RAM into my Mac Pro this morning. Should be interesting to see how that helps things get along!
Right. I use 4GB. Uhm...
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Old June 14th, 2012, 04:03 AM   #724
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

I've done some time-lapse using the SD900 (50i) and it looks fine. To be fair though I simply film in real time and decide the speed I need, and more importantly the changes in speed, when it's all on the timeline. Of course this method uses lots of battery and card space, but works well for a lot of projects.
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Old June 14th, 2012, 06:21 AM   #725
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Timelapse, opening shot, (in camera TM900), here.
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Old June 14th, 2012, 06:28 AM   #726
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Awesome video Colin! :)

I do have one question - were you using a steadycam @ 0:32? I'm loving that smooth motion.
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Old June 14th, 2012, 06:46 AM   #727
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Thanks Luc. The shot of the church was taken with the camera on a 26 inch Igus slider.
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Old June 15th, 2012, 06:45 PM   #728
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Andy,

Just curious, how does all that extra RAM help you? Here's a screenshot of my PC doing a render, the CPU is not even going past 80-85%! Any idea why this is happening? It's also telling me I have 1.29GB of free RAM (out of the 4!). So why you would need 32GB is beyond me! :) to be fair, I did not have any After Effects dynamic links in this one, maybe that counts as well.

CPU Usage
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Old June 19th, 2012, 11:19 PM   #729
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Though I've been using a GH2 instead of my TM700 for the last year or so, I've enjoyed watching what's happening with the TM900/X900 here. Your videos, and a recent update making Final Cut Pro X compatible with Panasonic's 60P files, inspired me to dust off the TM700 for this project.

In summer, following a dry Winter, the low deserts of Arizona present very muted colors. This, and harsh sun can result in less than interesting images. This project is an attempt to use the "Picture Adjust" settings of the Panasonic HDC-TM700 to improve color, exposure and white balance for these conditions.

Panasonic HDC-TM700
Polarizer
Gitzo GT0531 tripod and G2180 fluid head
White Balance for sun
Picture Adjust settings
- Sharpness +1
- Color +3
- Exposure -3
- WB Adjust +1 to Red

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Old June 23rd, 2012, 07:44 AM   #730
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

It was a pleasure to watch that video Dan, great work :) there was a bit too much sharpness for my taste (I go for the setting recommended in this thread, -1). the polarizer combined with -3 exposure made the sky really dark, but I like it. speaking of which, what polarizer did you use? I'm looking to buy one myself. is it a 46mm screw-on? someone said you might get some vignetting at full wide, in which case your video clearly proves them wrong.

thank you!
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Old June 23rd, 2012, 06:01 PM   #731
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Luc, if you are worried about vignetting you could try using a larger filter in combination with a stepping ring. I find 58mm a useful size.
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Old June 24th, 2012, 09:52 PM   #732
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

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Originally Posted by Luc Spencer View Post
It was a pleasure to watch that video Dan, great work :) there was a bit too much sharpness for my taste (I go for the setting recommended in this thread, -1). the polarizer combined with -3 exposure made the sky really dark, but I like it. speaking of which, what polarizer did you use? I'm looking to buy one myself. is it a 46mm screw-on? someone said you might get some vignetting at full wide, in which case your video clearly proves them wrong.

thank you!
Thank you for the kind words Luc. Happy to hear you enjoyed the project. I typically prefer a B+W polarizer, but used a 46mm screw-on Tiffen here. No vignetting full-wide with the TM700.

Thanks for watching.
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Old June 28th, 2012, 04:39 PM   #733
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Question!

Take this camera:

Sony NEX-VG20 (AVCHD 1080 50p camera) - about 3x the cost of the TM900, has a big CMOS sensor, and yet minimum illumination = 9 lux.

TM900 Minimum Illumination = 1.6 lux.

Are you telling me the Sony is 5 times worse in the dark than the cheap Pana? Or is it the other way around? I would just like to understand these concepts once and for all, and a big thank you to the person who is willing to explain it to me :)
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Old June 28th, 2012, 05:04 PM   #734
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

Luc.
I would imagine the 1.6 lux rating applies when using the TM900 in the low light scene mode, useless for anything usable.
The VG20 with its bigger sensor would be better in low light, when used with a fast lens
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Old June 28th, 2012, 05:13 PM   #735
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Re: The Panasonic TM900 Users Thread

So that number is basically cheating... also, what do you mean by fast lens?
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