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Old April 29th, 2012, 05:34 PM   #1
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Where best to read about the hacks?

I'm contemplating a GH2 purchase and wanted to educate myself about these, what their capabilities are, and how to install them. The information appears to be thinly spread across dozens of sites, unfortunately; I have yet to find one that does even a semi-ok job of summarizing each of them. Any pointers?

Thanks,
Aaron
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Old April 29th, 2012, 06:39 PM   #2
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

First you have to find a cam that you can hack. As I understand it, Panasonic blocked later hacking at a certain point and of course, there are major downsides to hacking.

But there are sites around, I'll PM you and I've seen hacked cams on Ebay. Be very careful there.

Cheers.
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Old April 29th, 2012, 08:24 PM   #3
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

The main site is titled "Personal View," run by the creator of the hacking software.

I'm not sure what the downsides are, aside from possibly voiding a warranty and filling up hard drives quickly. It's not a potentially destructive hack like Magic Lantern.
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Old April 29th, 2012, 09:04 PM   #4
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Allan Black View Post
First you have to find a cam that you can hack. As I understand it, Panasonic blocked later hacking at a certain point and of course, there are major downsides to hacking.

But there are sites around, I'll PM you and I've seen hacked cams on Ebay. Be very careful there.

Cheers.
I've used about 15 flavors of the GH2 hack. There's no indication Panasonic has blocked any hacking. Ptools was updated so that it works with the latest Panasonic firmware. The already mentioned personal view web site is the best place for info, but be prepared to do a lot of reading to get familiar with the latest versions.

Pat
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Old April 29th, 2012, 11:32 PM   #5
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

Thanks all! This is very helpful. I've seen GH2 video without the hacks and find it looks quite good, but figured it couldn't hurt to learn about the hacks. Unfortunately, it's difficult to gauge just what kind of performance improvements are gotten by hacking, since most video samples are savagely recompressed by Vimeo or YouTube.
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Old April 30th, 2012, 06:18 PM   #6
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

I'm not sure if we're supposed to put up links. I guess the mods will nuke it if not:

Hacks and Patches

I think I've tested most of the current hacks now. The upside is less than you'd think. You can get better video but not by a huge margin. The plus is more subdued...better low light, better color grading or correction, better skin tones...so on.

My opinion is that the mega bitrate hacks are not worth the cost in reliability and storage space not to mention the two hundred bucks for a 64 gig 95mb card.

I like Driftwood's Cluster. His latest patches are so specialized they're almost impossible to use,

My favorite is Sanity5. Ralph put some common sense into it.

The biggest downside is they're addictive and there's always something better on the horizon. I'm waiting for Nick to post his latest now.
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Old May 1st, 2012, 01:46 PM   #7
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

I just checked out the "personal view" website. There is WAY to much to read and decipher. Unlike others, I would almost prefer less options!

Perhaps someone can mention a specific hack that meets the following criteria, which I feel is most important in a basic hack:

- Reliable & Tested
- Reduced high ISO noise
- Better Low Light Performance
- Slighty higher bitrate (I've read the 44mbps is more than enough).

These options are really all I am looking for in a hack. Can anyone recommenced a specific hack that addresses these needs.

Thanks,
Angelo
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Old May 1st, 2012, 04:03 PM   #8
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

I agree that the confusion on that site is too daunting to really want to work too hard to deal with.
And I also am in the same camp as others that simply want something reliable and that works and won't risk crashing your camera during an important shoot.

I haven't hacked yet, which I why I am so interested in this thread, but I figure I'll give it a go if the situation really warrants it (ie: I hear enough good stuff about reliability and quality).
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Old May 1st, 2012, 04:25 PM   #9
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

That's a good link, thanks Matthew.

My first concern is this paragraph:

"Just after recording, a clip will not playback in-camera. If you reboot the camera and enter playback mode, all clips will playback just fine. This is normal behaviour of the hacked GH2 and not a bug in the patch."

This sounds really annoying. I wonder if all hacks have this limited playback option. I would prefer not to have to power cycle the camera in between each record.
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Old May 2nd, 2012, 12:08 AM   #10
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

Angelo, My favorite all around patch, and I think it fits what you're asking about, is RalphB's Sanity 5.
The playback gets quirky with some of the patches.

Ralph's bitrates for Sanity 5 are pretty low. He found a way to increase the P frames ...something like that...anyway, it works.
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Old May 2nd, 2012, 12:21 AM   #11
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

This is a screengrab from last night's video of a May Day protest.
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Old May 2nd, 2012, 07:43 AM   #12
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

I find the hacked video to be far superior to the stock footage. The footage from my hacked GH2 looks way better to me than that from my Canon XF100. This improvement is what drives so many people to put up with the side issues associated with the hack settings. I rarely have issues with spanning or in-camera playback. I am using 90 megabit per second cards now and that certainly helps. Here are some samples from an older hack:




Incidentally, the latest hacks have fewer cadence issues, less noise, and excellent resolution. Clips shot with the Canon 300 f4/l and TC have an effective focal length of about 840 to 2100 mm.

Pat
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Old May 2nd, 2012, 04:19 PM   #13
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

This is a screen grab (I don't have the bandwidth today to upload video) of a test shot using the new Kiron 80-200 with zoom lock, and Driftwood's CM Day setting.
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Old May 3rd, 2012, 04:50 PM   #14
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

My 2p worth:

I've played around a little with "Cake" and 100 Mbps "Flow Motion." I was underwhelmed. It wasn't a scientific or controlled test in any way, but I couldn't see any difference between those codecs and the standard 24 Meg codec - but it was all low light stuff. Eventually, the Cake hack wouldn't record to my Class 10 Transcend cards and I got the "recording stopped" message.

I can be overly sceptical at times, but - for me - there's a little bit of a "hi-fi" whiff about all of this - lots of people saying they can see the difference and many others confidently then quoting them verbatim - and possibly some falling prey to "expectation bias" - they see the difference because they expect to. I'm not certain in any way, but I do have a gut feeling that the engineers at Panasonic might be laughing at us all.

Like others have said, I'm using my GH2s to make a living and hacking adds levels of risk that I'm not entirely comfortable with. I think the guys over on Personal View don't help things by making it all so opaque and jargonised (and a little Wild West.)

However, one thing I would say is very useful for those who don't want to risk higher bit rates - and that's the removal of the 29 minute time removal. Essentially, you load the hack up and don't tick any of the options except "remove time limit." I now get 1 hr 30 mins non-stop from a 16 Gig card - very useful for event filming. I paid my donation just for this functionality.

I will give it all a go again sometime soon when we next get some sunlight in the UK - and I promise I'll report back if I subsequently discover what I perceive to be any improvement in quality by using the hacks.

Ben.
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Old May 4th, 2012, 05:22 AM   #15
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Re: Where best to read about the hacks?

Likewise. I could not see an awful lot of difference in the higher bitrates, but the unlimited recording time is a godsend. Could it be someting in the Cornwall air ??
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