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Panasonic LUMIX G / GF / GH / GX Series
4K and AVCHD on a Micro Four Thirds system camera with interchangeable lenses.


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Old May 8th, 2009, 06:33 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by M. Gene Hoffman View Post
the fact is it is a poor version of a superior codec.
You're absolutely correct on this. I'm amazed at how fragile it is on the GH1. Tis a bummer.
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Old May 8th, 2009, 06:59 PM   #47
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Well, let's hope it gets fixed in future firmware updates.
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Old May 8th, 2009, 07:13 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by Shahin Izadi View Post
Keep in mind comparing the quality of video achieved with different codecs is not a simple bitrate comparison; MPEG-4 compression is far more efficient than MPEG-2."
The thing is, yes, AVCHD is much more efficient than HDV. But that efficiency shines more towards the lower bit rate...meaning at 9Mbps. Pound for pound if you shot 9Mbps on both HDV and AVCHD you will see the latter kick the formers behind. But as you go up higher in bit rates things start to even out. What I mean is you will not see much of a difference in quality between 17Mbps and 24Mbps with AVCHD. The Canon A1 is a good example of superb looking HDV....and really...I can't think of an AVCHD camera that is sharper (maybe on par....but not any sharper)...




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Old May 8th, 2009, 07:16 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by Steev Dinkins View Post
I
But you can't just throw this 720p60 footage into a 24fps timeline and think it's 24fps. IT IS NOT.

You will have the same awful stuttering mistake of a cadence that you get whenever you throw 30p into a 24p timeline.

So in short, based on my findings and testing, 720p mode is not 24p - it is 60p or 30p.


Last point - I have a GH1 on pre-order from Amazon. So I'm not just a 5DMkII owner, hating on the GH1.
So you don't have the camera, but you have done all this testing on what?

And, if you don't understand the difference between 30p and 60p and their relation to 24p, then it's not testing you need to do -- it's some math.
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Old May 8th, 2009, 07:23 PM   #50
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24p is not a limitation. It separates reality from fiction and that's a good thing.
Why is it that "fiction" shot in Japan and Korea are 60i and they don't look like the news. Perhaps it has far more o do with lighting. Perhaps, 24p is nothing more than a convention. In which case, it can change.

Anyway, isn't it clear that narrative is dead and that today's audience wants recycled comic books. If so, today's "fiction" may be more powerful when it looks "real."
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Old May 8th, 2009, 07:33 PM   #51
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So you don't have the camera, but you have done all this testing on what?
With raw footage from the GH1 downloaded from Internet sources. If you want to go there, I'll provide sources. Furthermore, I'm testing 60p to 24p conversion using the HVX200. It is perfectly valid for testing this workflow.

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Originally Posted by Steve Mullen View Post
And, if you don't understand the difference between 30p and 60p and their relation to 24p, then it's not testing you need to do -- it's some math.
I know the difference and the relation, or I should say lack of relation to 24p. Show us aesthetically successful converted footage from 60p or 30p to 24p within your everyday NLE. Especially with the intention of making it look natural as if it was shot originally on 24p. Bring it. Show it. I want to know how someone pulls that off.

My best methods involve Twixtor on After Effects. And that is quite a bit of work. My point is that anyone thinking its a walk in the park to drop 60p into a 24p timeline and have motion look "right", they are being wishful.

If I'm wrong, explain the simple workflow.
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Old May 8th, 2009, 07:56 PM   #52
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It's not the numbers, it's the quality of the codec. Canon has always had an edge with codecs, but this just looks like Panasonic being lazy with their implementation.
It would be nice if people would understand the technology before tossing in their opinions.

Sony and Panasonic employ AVCHD using H.264/AVC at a specific LEVEL. At this level increasing bit-rate doesn't do much. 18Mbps is a fine limit.

Canon chose to use LEVEL+1 which gives them the ability to use more powerful encoding tools. Specifically, the ability to switch between 4x4 and 8x8 macro-blocks. (Sony and Panasonic AVCHD only works with 4x4.)

Canon's not "better" than Panasonic. They simply chose to put more power into their consumer products. Want the same goodness from Panasonic -- simply choose an AVCCAM camcorder. They aren't lazy. They have a product strategy that Canon doesn't need.

IF Panasonic wants to enter the $3000 market, they can use AVCCAM. However, I strongly doubt they want to play in this price range. Owning the under $1500 market is both more possible and offers huge volumes.

Perhaps one should consider what it might mean that Canon didn't introduce an HDV replacement at NAB. Instead of wishing for firmware to fix a Canon "still" camera, maybe the next Canon video cameras will go up against the Red line.

I can't see anyone giving us ALL we REALLY want at $1500 to $3000 when Canon gets $10K for an HDV camcorder. They know that when they put all the goodies into a product, we'll pay $6K to $12K for it.

The GH1, at it's price, needs to be compared to a Best Buy AVCHD camcorder. I think it's clear it beats all of them. It also seems to intrude into HM100 and HVC40 space at 2X more money. Asking anything more from a cheap camera is absurd.
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Old May 8th, 2009, 08:19 PM   #53
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I know the difference and the relation, or I should say lack of relation to 24p.
Obviously you don't. The key is that 60p in 24p can be accomplished by "good" pulldown (the NLE repeats frames as needed in the correct ratio) whereas 30p in 24p must use "bad" pulldown. Bad pulldown stutters, good does not. (Twixter is used for 30p.)

Before you say pulldown alters motion -- of course it does. But, even if you had true 24p you would need to ADD 2-3 pulldown to watch on the vast majority of Region 60 HDTVs since they are based at 60Hz. (I hope you aren't thinking you'll use a $1500 camera and have AVCHD converted to 35mm film. But, even if you are that crazy, any 24p BD of the film will have 2-3 pulldown added before you see it -- even with a 24p HDMI connection.)

In fact it could be argued that for Indies, which let's face it have a very low probability of ever being seen -- let alone be seen on film in a theater -- working with a true 24p timeline is old fashioned. We are a year away from 1080p60 pro VTRs. They will record 2-3 pulldown directly. (720p60 does so now -- a perfect match to 720p resolution recordings.) To go to BD pulldown is removed. To be viewed, pulldown is added back by the HDTV.

PS: It's even easier with 720p50 since the pulldown is 2-2.
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Old May 8th, 2009, 08:56 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by M. Gene Hoffman View Post
Thanks everybody for the comments, but it's not sharpening, it's not shutter speed, it's not anything other than poor compression quality. I mean, look at it- it has nothing to do with any of that. Even when that camera hasn't moved yet it's obviously a much worse image.
Well, that's not what I see but I've also looked at this clips on several different systems and players and the codec playback ability and quality varies considerably. The HF10 clip has chromatic aberration, less color depth, high frequency shimmer etc. that are not in this or any GH1 clip.

Plus, neither camera is setup correctly for cinema like images. I have an HV30 and unless you set it in Cinegamma, custom image parements flat or off shutter speed correct etc., it easily make ugly footage.
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Old May 8th, 2009, 08:56 PM   #55
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Obviously you don't. The key is that 60p in 24p can be accomplished by "good" pulldown (the NLE repeats frames as needed in the correct ratio)
Who's talking about repeating frames. It sounds like you are thinking of 24p inside 60p. I'm talking about *converting* 60p to 24p, which involves deleting frames, not repeating them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Mullen View Post
working with a true 24p timeline is old fashioned.
Well now we're really getting off the subject I'm grappling with. If you want a 24p look from 60p, you're still going to have to convert it to 24p first, even if you're going to throw it back into a 30p or 60p timeline with pulldown.

The question remains. How do you convert 60p to 24p? And I'm not talking about for slow motion (conform 60p to 24p).

Other discussions about this are here:

Shooting 60P for 24P - DVXuser.com -- The online community for filmmaking
Rebel Café :: View topic - Shooting 60P for 24P
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Old May 8th, 2009, 10:16 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by Steve Mullen View Post
It would be nice if people would understand the technology before tossing in their opinions.
The WHY behind any of this doesn't matter if the end result is that the footage sucks for many kinds of shots.

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Originally Posted by Steve Mullen View Post
The GH1, at it's price, needs to be compared to a Best Buy AVCHD camcorder. I think it's clear it beats all of them.
Canon - VIXIA 3.3MP High-Definition Digital Camcorder with 2.7" Widescreen LCD Monitor - Black - HF20

There's the Best Buy link for the step up from the camera I was comparing it to. And the footage/codec QUALITY from that camera is embarrassingly better than the GH1.

I'm not talking about the lens/sensor/anything else here. It's clear that the GH1 trounces them all in this area. That's why we're all so excited in the first place! I am simply talking about the codec and thus quality of the images that come out of it.

It's like (and don't take this literally anyone) streaming gorgeous dual HD-SDI 4:4:4 from a genesis and recording it on a VCR.

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Old May 9th, 2009, 12:43 AM   #57
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This is all a great explanation except that it's confined to the camcorder world. In my mind the GH1 is competing directly with the Canon 5D and the new Rebel. The codec may be just fine compared to Panasonic's product line but the 5D isn't confined to that box. Have you considered in your analysis of the GH1 how it compares to the 5D's codec that is also H.264 and runs at well over twice the bitrate of the GH1?

Quite frankly Canon's photo division has given us a superior video recording format to almost anything we've seen in the sup 10k camcorder market from Sony, Panasonic or Canon's video division. I sure there are plenty of pissed off Canon video guys because their photo division just blew up almost ten years of keeping us all stuck in DV/HDV land.

I challenge someone to shoot 30P with all the proper lighting, cinematography, acting and story and see if the general public wouldn't think it's a film. It's soap operas that make TV look like a soap operas not the frame rate. 24P wasn't chosen because of it's amazing dreamy film affect on people. It was chosen to save money and to provide a universal standard. It was a good enough balance between a frame rate that was smooth enough and the added expense of going with a higher frame rate. Back then extras frames meant extra film cost. Today with digital this is not an issue.

But who am I? I'll never change this. It's going to take some big directors who are willing to think outside of the box to show people there's another option. I think the general public might actually prefer this newer format just because it is newer. Just look at how much the digital post production process has affected the image and look of film just in the last ten years. Even films that are shot on film retain little of that film look compared to things shot before digital could clean everything up and put that nice shine on it. It's a new world, why not a new framerate?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Mullen View Post
It would be nice if people would understand the technology before tossing in their opinions.

Sony and Panasonic employ AVCHD using H.264/AVC at a specific LEVEL. At this level increasing bit-rate doesn't do much. 18Mbps is a fine limit.

Canon chose to use LEVEL+1 which gives them the ability to use more powerful encoding tools. Specifically, the ability to switch between 4x4 and 8x8 macro-blocks. (Sony and Panasonic AVCHD only works with 4x4.)

Canon's not "better" than Panasonic. They simply chose to put more power into their consumer products. Want the same goodness from Panasonic -- simply choose an AVCCAM camcorder. They aren't lazy. They have a product strategy that Canon doesn't need.

IF Panasonic wants to enter the $3000 market, they can use AVCCAM. However, I strongly doubt they want to play in this price range. Owning the under $1500 market is both more possible and offers huge volumes.

Perhaps one should consider what it might mean that Canon didn't introduce an HDV replacement at NAB. Instead of wishing for firmware to fix a Canon "still" camera, maybe the next Canon video cameras will go up against the Red line.

I can't see anyone giving us ALL we REALLY want at $1500 to $3000 when Canon gets $10K for an HDV camcorder. They know that when they put all the goodies into a product, we'll pay $6K to $12K for it.

The GH1, at it's price, needs to be compared to a Best Buy AVCHD camcorder. I think it's clear it beats all of them. It also seems to intrude into HM100 and HVC40 space at 2X more money. Asking anything more from a cheap camera is absurd.
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Old May 9th, 2009, 02:22 AM   #58
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I did some comparisons of the different video modes on the GH1 using the footage from Watch Impress. I also threw in the HF10 footage that was linked here. It's not exactly the same shot, but it makes for an interesting comparison.

Edit: you're right Paulo, I was thinking of the HF11. The HF10 is 17mbps AVCHD only.
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Last edited by Joe Kowalski; May 9th, 2009 at 11:41 AM.
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Old May 9th, 2009, 02:32 AM   #59
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Originally Posted by Joe Kowalski View Post
It's worth noting, the HF10 is recording AVCHD in 17mbps in the shots here, but it also has a 24mbps mode above that.
I think you must be mistaken the HF10 to the HF11.
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Old May 9th, 2009, 05:35 AM   #60
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Originally Posted by Joe Kowalski View Post
I did some comparisons of the different video modes on the GH1 using the footage from Watch Impress. I also threw in the HF10 footage that was linked here. It's not exactly the same shot, but it makes for an interesting comparison.
hahaha, I was just in the process of exporting series of frames via TMPG when I read your post. Could have saved myself the effort, your comparison is very well composed and highlights the essentials.

It seems that the codec is set to save bandwidth on the darkest areas of the frame. Movement seems to be a lesser factor (check the "green-soup" in the foliage both on movement and static).

Maybe we have to change our workflow a bit to adjust. On film, it is common to slightly overexpose, with small video sensors, overexposure had to be avoided. Phil Bloom faced problems trying to lift exposure in the Zeiss lens clips but grading went well for the Hawai sunset clips (in that case it looks like he brought exposure down). The skies on the GH1 don't overexpose too quickly, it seems. Bring on the light.

In short, it is a disappointment but the workarounds may be a lot easier than setting shutter speed on a 5D2 ;)
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