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Old September 10th, 2013, 05:49 PM   #1
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Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

I continue to configure and test equipment out with the generous mounting positions on my DVMulti-Rig with the Panny GH3. The Marshall 800x480 rez 5" monitor is nice with the Marshall sunshade for that monitor. Once I black out all the freaking BIG white letters saying, "Marshall" on top and both sides. HA! Had to do the same with a Frezollini soft box diffuser. Hate that with look at me big letters.

BUT..... on a bright day even with the shade it is less than ideal by quite a bit as the clear screen on the monitor set back in the shade of the sunshade desperately wants to be a "mirror like" surface. Indoors, this is sweet. It's darned near good enough to manual focus with just watching it "sort of" snap in, but there also is a "Peaking" filter which changes to black & white with red being the peaking colors. I think if you get used to it (indoors) it is semi-workable without using the EVF or the LCD.

However, with my new Carry Speed VF-4 Universal Loupe in straight back orientation, and I would imagine the Zacuto loupe and the Varavon loupe, you can get your eye even with glasses on up into very good "black out" fashion in bright outdoors sunshine with the large rubber eyepieces. When I do that, and with the pretty dang nice LCD display on the GH3...... when in manual focus and I hit the sweet spot, there is a virtual little peaking like effect that happens right on the sweetest spot. It is better than subtle. Kind of like if you had white as the peaking color and on a very light peaking setting. Not as great as the "real deal", but it does "snap" when I hit focus.
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Old September 19th, 2013, 09:35 AM   #2
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

I have used a loupe for a couple of years now and they really are a life saver. You are right about it being much easier to focus. Even though you don't magically gain extra pixels or detail on the LCD screen what you do see better is how one pixel starts to blend into the other as you adjust focus. Two pixels may be two pixels but they look different depending on the focus. Once you get used to what to look for it becomes pretty easy to nail focus even in run and gun situations.

The problem with the GH cameras is finding a good loupe that actually fits the camera. As you know most of them are designed for the bigger DSLRs. The ones you mentioned I have heard to work very well. A lot of the cheaper ones out there not so much. The cheaper ones are usually too big and you have to perform some level of surgery to hack it to work with a GH camera. That's what I had to do and it was a pain. Really would like to get one that actually is designed to work with the GH3 instead of using my hacked one I use. Really thinking of pulling the trigger on the VF-4.
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Old September 19th, 2013, 11:36 AM   #3
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

I like it a lot and the price is good. But if you use any kind of over the shoulder rig, before ordering it or the Varavon which works with the LCD at the side, you have to see which is the right angle and orientation back to your eye when on the rig. With just the camera alone held or mounted on a tripod the latter would be nice with the tilting, though now you have the issue with the audio and headphone jacks. The straight back VF-4 is nice as well with just the camera and no rig.

It is very adjustable to make sure it's centered on the LCD but does have the issue of being very tight pressed up against the bottom of the EVF to where you need to get it under there before tightening the bottom support bracket up against the bottom of the camera. So not a quick pull off or put on as it is designed. But then it wouldn't be rocket science to come up with a small shim between the bracket and the bottom of the camera to give the leeway below the EVF to slide the VF4 in and out.
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Old September 19th, 2013, 01:54 PM   #4
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

I don't know - for $45 more than the $180 price of the Carry Speed VF 4, I've been thinking seriously about getting a $245 Seetec EVF with peaking.

Here is the company's promo video:





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Old September 19th, 2013, 03:45 PM   #5
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

Wow I would be skeptical about that just because of the added weight and dead area of mass around the monitor and then where do you put it with the additional weight as well of some kind of arm that is good enough and rigid enough to hold it all in place to be an eyepiece to push your face against? Just saying. With the battery and all that mass, means a lot more weight & space needed than a loupe.

On the LCD with the Carry Speed, the display is powered normally by the camera. And rather than actually latch the flip up option of the viewfinder, I just leave it sitting on the seat so all you have to do is swing it up. Then the great shape of the frame, receding inward toward the LCD at the bottom, allows you to have easy touch access with your interactive LCD screen. Just my non-hands-on observation about that particular kind of a product vs what I have experienced with the VF-4.
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Old September 19th, 2013, 10:09 PM   #6
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

The Seetec looks like a knock off of the viewfinder you can get for the Small HD 4. I've only ever used that on my XH A1. Unwieldy IMO. I just got a cage for my GH3 so will try both out this weekend if I have the time.
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Old September 20th, 2013, 12:34 AM   #7
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

Happy with my VF-4 even if a little bit fiddly to get on and off. Using the GH3 without it it is quite a shock, that tiny image in the LCD.
The VF-4 with the GH3 battery holder in place even more fiddly as you need to dismount the whole thing to change a battery, and the holder on/off switch obscured somewhat, at least the way I have mine set up
Still a very useful piece of kit, good value for money, and almost essential for me.

I've been using a Swit 1071C monitor as well. Originally purchased for my XLH1 then my EX3. Apart from considerations of weight and portability this far better than a loupe, as you would expect.
For focussing basically but good for assessing the "shape" of the picture. Shows full viewfinder info.
Connected via HDMI and interesting to me that the image on the monitor actually sharpens up a bit when I press "record" (I use a remote cable).

I video birds, frequently from public hides of which a few round here. With the monitor I can sit by the cam/tripod, below and to one side sort of, and pan and tilt without having to get behind the cam to use the viewfinder. Good to be able to use both eyes. Similar applies when I video from my car with cam/tripod over the passenger seat. Remote control cable essential.

So when out and about it would be the VF-4, when static it will be the monitor, noting that the new Swit 1071C "Plus" also has peaking and waveform.

Ron
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Old September 20th, 2013, 01:26 PM   #8
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

That 7" Swit monitor has nice specs. 900 to 1 contrast is good for these.

S-1071C 7-inch HDMI Monitor

But how do you deal with ourdoor bright light or do you always have to be in the shade when on tripod? Hoods with these things (I have the 600 to 1 contrast 5" Marshall below) even in the shade seem to create as big a problem by turning the surface of the monitor back in the deep shade into a mirror as they solve.

It helps to be blacked out yourself with black hat for shading your face and dark shirt to look at it, especially in the sun.

Marshall Electronics 5" On-Camera Monitor V-LCD50-HDI B&H


No small shade on it and I could see it working in good natural shade though?

Edit.... OK I see also you mention "hides". Yeah that would be the perfect place.
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Old September 24th, 2013, 10:15 AM   #9
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

I think I've decided to get the Carry Speed VF4, but I need it to replace the crappy LCD on my Pocket Cinema Camera in addition to peaking duty on the GH3.

I can't afford to get both the Carry Speed and the Seetec, so I'll just have to put up with the separate box to the side of the camera :(

But at least I'll have peaking :)
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Old September 24th, 2013, 08:53 PM   #10
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

Any monitor for fast outdoor shooting is a pain, that's the truth. I use the loupe (varavon ex solo supporter). No, you don't have peaking, but with expanded manual focus set to x4 I find this the best alternative by far. Monitors are nice for long set-ups and indoors, but on the run, outdoors, forget it. By the time you add a battery, a monitor, a support arm that flops about, it's really not worth it just for peaking. But hey, that's me.
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Old September 25th, 2013, 02:37 AM   #11
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

Yes indeed, that's why I have two GH3s, one with a VF-4 loupe the other for use with a monitor. I've never done "run and gun" wildlife filming in the past, not really feasible for what I do which nearly always requires a tripod. Nearest I suppose was sitting in a safari Land Rover out in SA filming mammals with my old XL1.
When I do need some mobility can carry a lightweight tripod and louped GH3. When static, GH3 big lenses and monitor, with louped and 14-140 available for establishing shots and the like.

After hearing of friends really bad experiences with sensor dust on their two GH3s while out in Botswana recently, I'm reluctant to do lens changing out in the field in dusty environments, and I'm off to the Pantanal on Monday. Two bodies each with a different lens can help here I hope.


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Old November 3rd, 2013, 06:58 PM   #12
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

Speaking of loupes, I just picked up this below to use with a Manfrotto 561BHDV monopod and my Sony A77 as a second rig to my GH3 configured on the DVMulti-Rig that I talk about with the Carry Speed VF4 loupe above.

This thing ROCKS! It looks a little odd in pictures but it is well engineered, well thought out and robust. The optics are excellent and you can even lock your diopter setting with one of the several turning nuts that are on it to also get the loupe to the right position on your LCD. There is a semi hard rubber surface on the edges of the loupe that would come in contact with your LCD or OLED or whatever.

But the big ticket to me is that it has a releasing latch to let it easily flip up out of the way when you want to use or articulate your LCD. It mounts on the camera's shoe and has its own shoe above it so you don't lose a shoe for whatever else you might be mounting. I just received it and after testing on the A77 for only a little over an hour with the Manfrotto monopod, I REALLY, REALLY like it.

Hoodman Cinema Kit Pro HCKP B&H Photo Video
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Old November 4th, 2013, 02:38 AM   #13
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

I take it Ron that the loupe is fixed, no tilting of the viewfinder with the loupe in place?

If so similar in that respect to my VF-4, which I find excellent on the odd occasion I wish to go hand held but no so good when using a tripod. Then it is necessary to articulate pod/body rather than viewfinder in order to use the loupe.

I'll be after a loupe which provides viewfinder flexibility. As said above I prefer a monitor when using a pod but this does reduce mobility which one of the points of using a cam like a GH3.


Ron
ps my new Swit 1071C "plus" monitor has an excellent peaking facility with of course "full HD" live view via the HDMI port on the GH3.
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Old November 4th, 2013, 10:28 AM   #14
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Re: Loupes.... Semi-solution to no peaking in GH3

"I take it Ron that the loupe is fixed, no tilting of the viewfinder with the loupe in place?

If so similar in that respect to my VF-4, which I find excellent on the odd occasion I wish to go hand held but no so good when using a tripod. Then it is necessary to articulate pod/body rather than viewfinder in order to use the loupe.

I'll be after a loupe which provides viewfinder flexibility. As said above I prefer a monitor when using a pod but this does reduce mobility which one of the points of using a cam like a GH3.

Ron
ps my new Swit 1071C "plus" monitor has an excellent peaking facility with of course "full HD" live view via the HDMI port on the GH3."



The difference between this Hoodman loupe and the Carry Speed loupe, if it were on the GH3 since they both have a different sort of a release to tilt the magnifying portion up, is that the whole lower portion tilts upward on it which would then allow the rear "LCD" to be swung over to the left side and articulated but without the loupe. The Carry Speed still would have part of its body in front of the LCD, same as other "straight back" loupes.

If you mean articulating the LCD with a loupe's magnification still attached then you'd have to use the Varavon with its support system that allows it to be out to the left with the LCD. There is a youtube I saw a couple months ago where a guy took simple bracket parts and adapted them to the Varavon setup which allowed him to position it both straight behind the camera and LCD, and in its normal way off to the left if I recall correctly.

For my GH3 setup with with the Carry Speed I am on the DVMulti-rig and can also use my Marshall 5" monitor on the left arm side. I would think on a pod setup it might get a bit unwieldy or top heavy. Guess depends on the brackets used.


Edit. As far as articulating with the Hoodman on the LCD I should mention that I am super happy with the 561BHDV Manfrotto. So many ways to do that and hold much more stable than handheld or possibly with shoulder rig as well. And I have the cool spring loaded support rod and belt with the MultiRig. But with those little feet on the ground, your height instantly adjustable, forward and back lean being one kind of a "tilt" and the smooth little head with just the right tension for an 8lb they say or less camera weight, and its smooth locking for an even better 2nd kind of tilt……... In just about 90 minutes yesterday I was pretty giddy with these two pieces working together. My first monopod and I love it. So when I want to do high elevation shots with the A77, or the GH3 for that matter if I wanted to take it off the other rig, I just have to focus with the Hoodman loupe and the Sony LCD (which SMOKES the GH3 by the way as it must be higher resolution because the image is "smooth" and more detailed and then there's the great peaking from the camera [thanks for not including that on GH3 Panasonic] :( ….. so focus first then flip up the loupe and pull the LCD out and aim it down a little bit to give me framing for when the camera is above my head. Would be quick enough on a GH3 to do that with moving it out to the side as well I would think.

Last edited by Ron Fabienke; November 4th, 2013 at 12:57 PM.
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