GH-1 for long form video (2 hrs) at

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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 4th, 2010, 10:09 PM   #1
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: NYC: Long Island City
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GH-1 for long form video (2 hrs)

Hey guys,

I'm an audio guy, getting into video. I'm looking to document classical music recitals on video.

I'll be dealing with:
LONG shoots: 2 hours or more.
Relatively fixed subjects, sitting down on stage.
Some fast motion by the subjects, but small motions.
Stage lighting is usually not horrible, but some low light situations are expected.
No panning on my part expected (to deal w/ the mud)
Dual system audio (of COURSE!)
Supposed continuous shooting w/o problems (from what I've read)

I haven't seen much written about very long shoots, which is why I'm asking. My gut says I should go w/ a videocam BUILT for long shoots. But my pocket book says "...hmmmm....what if this works?"

I've been cruising video forums for a loooong time researching what to buy. I've gone from slobbering over video cams to slobering over the GH-1. Originally, I was going to get an hmc150, no questions asked. But the drawbacks of this particular DSLRs don't appear to be a problem based on my subject matter. And I could buy into a multi-cam situation for the cost of the hmc. A significant production value increase on the gamble of quality (or reliability) value, if you know what I mean.

Lack of motorized zoom is the only thing I can think of at this point. I don't know if this can be overcome in any way, but as I start a single-cam operation, this should be ok. I won't be changing the frame at all. And once I go multi-cam, well, there you go - I don't get a zoom transition, but I can cut away, zoom in, and get close-ups.

Do you guys think I'm missing anything before I pull the trigger? Because this is a new field to me, I know that I will need things that "I can't think of at the moment." And for that reason, it's often best to just buy the 'pro' piece of gear... but this looks like it just fits the bill.



I posted this on another board altogether - hope you guys don't mind. Let me know if it's a violation of terms and I'll take it down.
Fitz Townsend is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 5th, 2010, 03:17 AM   #2
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Byron Bay, Australia
Posts: 1,114
For these types of concerts I always like to have a wide locked down camera as a backup. So I would definitely consider getting two cameras for this type of work - even if the second one is only a cheap handycam. You never know when you are going to bump your tripod or have a card error no matter what camera you are using so it's nice to have a backup.

Zooming, while *possible* with some lenses on the GH1 is not easy and will usually look terrible. However, I try to avoid zooming in general with whatever camera I'm using. I'll usually cut away to my b-cam in post to remove any zooms I did. With the GH1 and another backup camera, it would be no different.

One other thing you'll want to consider is the poor lowlight capability of the kit lens. Most likely wou will be in a fairly dark hall with less than ideal lighting. So you might want something a bit brighter than the kit lens - especially if you are zoomed in and only at f/5.8. However getting a different lens will mean also losing autofocus which you may want sometimes.

I actually like to use my GH1 as my wide angle camera at concerts. This allows me to monitor audio on my FX7 with XLR adaptor, as well as giving me smooth zooms and a longer zoom lens. The GH1 records the whole stage performs better at this than my Sony Handycam because of the higher dynamic range. I lose less detail on the dark edges of the stage and white areas are less likely to blow out under bright spotlights.
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