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Old April 21st, 2011, 06:20 AM   #31
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Chris, the Sigma 18-50mm F2.8 EX DC MACRO is only available used, so make sure you're looking at the right one. There is a newer version available, but it is not listed onn the compatability chart.

One reason I recommend the GH1 and 20mm is cost, you end up with a very nice second cam for cheap, great in low light, and you can test the waters with it without a huge investment. It operates essentially the same as a GH2, but without a few features, such as the touch screen. But the GH1 still has great auto focus, and if you really like it you can get the GH2 later.

I have both cameras, and yes the GH2 has better specs, etc, but with the 20mm f/1.7 lens the GH1 is essentially the same camera, with a slightly bigger sensor and a few nice features, but as a rear cam you will not need those features anyway!

I think your idea of sticking with the HMC150 as your main cam is a great idea, it is what lots of others do. Starting with a GH1/GH2 as a backup or 2nd cam is a perfect/practical way to start.

However you do it, since you have a reliable camera already, it will work out fine.
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Old April 21st, 2011, 06:46 AM   #32
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Thanks Jeff

The new Sigma is on the chart but won't autofocus but you can use the shutter button to focus.

I seriously have enough to do already without having to worry about trying to manual focus on a third camera as well. DSLR's I could handle easily in a controlled enviroment like a corporate promo shoot but maybe I'm just too old to fight these at weddings!!!

I was also wondering if the GH's have rolling shutter issues??? I saw some vertical breakup during a pan in your jewellery clip on Vimeo.... or maybe that was just Vimeo???

BTW: I shoot on 2 x HMC82's (PAL versions of the HMC80 (also known as the HMC40 put into a big box!)) However they work very well, I like a big camera on my shoulder and the XLR audio is awesome as well as ALL the controls are on the outside (looks like a 747 flight deck but they are accessable without going into any menus!!!)

To be brutally honest I'm still a bit reluctant to add a DSLR at this stage...I really do need a camera I can pick up and move with and it shoots good footage with it's current settings....your disgust at your "walk in the park footage" does worry me a bit as often I have to grab a camera and film on the run (walk) when the bride decides to talk to Aunt Jennie and wants you there to film it. What exactly is the issue with walking around with a GH1 and filming???? I do a lot of it so that would be a problem if the GH doesn't like having a run and gun operator!!

Chris
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Old April 21st, 2011, 06:54 AM   #33
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Chris,It was Vimeo, the original footage was perfect. Didn't know about the newer Sigma, that might be what I have, don't know now. I bought mine used for $350.

The Sigma certainly does have auto focus, if you look at the last two columns, unless I'm missing something. I use it all the time. It does not have tracking. You have to push shutter halfway to focus, which you can do while recording, and that, I think is auto focus.
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Old April 21st, 2011, 07:09 AM   #34
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Chris, the issue with walking around is related to the size of the camera, movement is exaggerated.

If you have a HMC 150 I would think you would not need to walk around with the GH2. Most people start with the GH2 or GH1 as a second camera, and that is how I recommend starting.

I was broke when I bought my GH2, I had to sell my FX1 to finance it, or I would still have it and be using it. I may still acquire another one. Nothing beats the ease of use of a videocamera.
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Old April 21st, 2011, 09:24 AM   #35
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Hi Jeff

I was looking at the first of the focus columns..which I assumed meant that you cannot just start the recording and it will auto focus all the time. When you use the shutter button, does it set focus (as it would it still photos) but if you move to a new position you would need to focus again????

That would be a tad tricky filming the bridal party walking down the aisle as they are constantly changing focal distance!!!

Nice to know that was a vimeo issue!! So if you mount the GH2 on a shoulder mount rig then the "wobbles" will be a lot better. The very reason I use shoulder mount cameras that weigh 8lbs each!! I can walk around and get smooth footage

PS: I have HMC82's not 150's the 150's are not shoulder mount!!

Thanks for all the feedback

Chris
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Old April 21st, 2011, 10:00 AM   #36
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Chris, you are referring to tracking and continuous focus, I believe. With my lenses I have to adjust focus all the time. AFC or continuous focus is actually a feature I have virtually never used. I intend to try it soon.

Hard to believe, eh? Well, my first wedding my second shooter used AFC mode and it hunted non stop and it was terrible, so I just never used it.

It is actually a nice feature, but I don't know how it works, really.

I have used the facial tracking thing and it can be very nice, but I don't use it much either.

I actually have to learn how to use these features yet.
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Old April 21st, 2011, 09:11 PM   #37
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Hi Jeff

I'm pretty convinced now that the GH is designed to be run in video mode in manual. The follow focus seems to hunt and really, if you treat these as manual still cameras and expose and focus manually then you can essentially use any fast vintage lens on it and get really good results.

I think my application would be using it in full manual...stick on an adapter and find a nice fast lens on eBay for the adapter and shoot in full manual. That way results are guaranteed and you can't blame the camera for soft focus.

I wonder if you can get a manual follow focus kit for the GH2??? That way even a bride walking towards you could be kept in focus easily!! Ok it's all hard work with lots of thinking and decisions but my feeling is thats the correct way to run the camera and not expect it to "point and shoot"

I would seriously look at a GH2 on a rig (ideally with follow focus gears) and shoot in full manual and I reckon that will produce pretty outstanding video. The biggest mistake I would say would trying to set the camera on auto, push the button and expect it to work like a camcorder!!

Chris
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Old April 21st, 2011, 09:15 PM   #38
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

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Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
I wonder if you can get a manual follow focus kit for the GH2??? That way even a bride walking towards you could be kept in focus easily!! Ok it's all hard work with lots of thinking and decisions but my feeling is thats the correct way to run the camera and not expect it to "point and shoot"
Yes, any follow focus will work. Personally I've used the Red Rock and it's beautiful. Nice piece of machinery.
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Old April 21st, 2011, 10:51 PM   #39
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Chris, the autofocus is very handy, and I personally do use it a lot, but I'm also constantly adjusting manually. I alternate between using AFS mode and manual when using the GH2. The feature with the GH2 where you can adjust focus by touching the screen is super nice, and that is my weekend project, to get familiar with that using the 20mm.
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Old April 22nd, 2011, 05:05 AM   #40
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

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Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
I wonder if you can get a manual follow focus kit for the GH2??? That way even a bride walking towards you could be kept in focus easily!!
I have a follow focus on my shoulder rig and do exactly what you just described.
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Old April 22nd, 2011, 09:12 AM   #41
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Thanks Patrick

I see my people at CineCity have the DSLR Kit 3 which gives you a rail system, matte box, shoulder mount and follow focus with a speed crank and whip.

That would make the GH2 into almost a video camera but with manual focus...the $864.00 price tag makes the whole setup quite expensive though and a GH2 body and a decent fast lens!!!

It would make a nice looking system with true manual focussing without having to fiddle with touch screens.

Chris
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Old April 22nd, 2011, 11:11 AM   #42
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
I see my people at CineCity have the DSLR Kit 3 which gives you a rail system, matte box, shoulder mount and follow focus with a speed crank and whip.

That would make the GH2 into almost a video camera but with manual focus...the $864.00 price tag makes the whole setup quite expensive though and a GH2 body and a decent fast lens!!!
I am not a fan of pimping out DSLRs with a lot of gear to make them something that they are not. Half the joy of using a DSLR for video is that they are light & inconspicuous. Use a monopod if you want to stop it shaking. You don't need a shoulder rig to take the weight of the camera. Additionally my experience with a couple of purchases from CineCity (never again!) is that the quality is utter crap so that would be $864 wasted anyway.
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Old April 22nd, 2011, 12:26 PM   #43
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Re: GH2 for run and gun work

I manual focus without the touch screen. The LCD is iffy except between shots when you can use the focal assist. While shooting the EVF is the way to go, very sharp. Touch screen focusing is neat but in the end more of a gimmick with what seems to me as limited real use.

I think a light shoulder brace is a good addition for the GH2. You can do things with that that a monopod doesn't help with. Some of the elaborate shoulder braces (that cost more than the camera) seem like overkill unless the shoot is based around the lenses. My shooting kit now includes a sturdy small metal tripod with a ball level adjust. a metal monopod and a plastic shoulder brace that breaks down into four parts. All fit into the tripod bag.
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