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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 March 7th, 2014, 04:08 AM   #1
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New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

I have recently purchased a GH3 and 12-35 and 35-100 lenses with a view to adding a GH4 as a second camera body when I can afford it. Therefore I am new to the system. I shoot weddings and documentary films. Previously I have shot weddings on Sony cameras using AVCHD in either 50p (28Mbps) or 25p. Does the GH3 have a 25p mode? It says it is 1920x1080i (*but output is 25frames/sec). Otherwise I suppose I can just shoot 50p and drop the footage into a 25p timeline.

The alternative is to shoot the higher quality mov format in either 50p or 25p at 50Mbps. I have tried this at 25p and the footage doesn't play back well in Final Cut Pro 7. So converted the files to Pro Res LT in Mpeg Streamclip. Is this the way to do it? Am I losing quality by converting to Pros Res LT, should I be using HQ if shooting at 50Mbps? There is also the All-Intra 72 Mbps option as well.

My computer isn't that powerful so could do with shooting at the minimum spec for output to DVD or Blu-ray, but for my documentary work, I would like to shoot at the best quality possible.

Any insight into what works for you guys would be very interesting to me. Thanks.
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Old March 7th, 2014, 07:36 AM   #2
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

The GH3 shoots 25p but puts it into a 50i file. This will not affect the nature of the resulting image. ProResLT is an acceptable format to convert to and it will not introduce any image degradation. You should download a demo version of ClipWrap, convert the raw AVCHD files to QuickTime and see if you would like to skip the conversion process to ProRes. It saves space but is a bit more intensive on your computer's CPU to leave the files in AVCHD. For simple editing this will work fine but if you are effects heavy, converting to ProRes will be better.
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Old March 7th, 2014, 07:46 AM   #3
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

Many thanks. What if I shoot in a Mov format at 50Mbps and then convert to Pro Res, will the image deteriorate or retain all its detail?
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Old March 7th, 2014, 04:32 PM   #4
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

ProRes is superior to 50Mbps so there should be no loss through conversion. 50Mbps is a strain on many computer CPUs so converting to ProRes is often a good idea just for editing ease.
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Old March 8th, 2014, 01:29 PM   #5
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

I have No problems with 1080P 60fps .mov at 50 or 72 Mbps.on my computer, i7 3.25 ghtz. 24 gigis of ram, Adobe CS6. If your planning on getting a GH4 you better get a faster computer for sure, In fact I will be upgrading mine this fall.I love my GH3, and can't wait for the GH4 to come out, I'll be all over that when it's available!
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Old March 10th, 2014, 09:58 AM   #6
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

Definitely need a faster computer, I know that for sure, unfortunately the prices of the the new Mac Vases are beyond my reach at this time.
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Old March 10th, 2014, 01:48 PM   #7
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

Your i7 is perfectly good for now.
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Old March 15th, 2014, 01:17 PM   #8
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

Quote:
Originally Posted by James Hollingsworth View Post
Definitely need a faster computer, I know that for sure, unfortunately the prices of the the new Mac Vases are beyond my reach at this time.
Build your own! Better choice of cases and all the components inside, including GPU Cards, It's not hard, and way cheaper than buying Apple gear, and when or if it breaks down you know how to fix it. So I think you get better service. I have built 3 PC's in my life and getting ready to build a 4th. Three of them are still running! All I had to do to them was replace with bigger hard drives. I think I have spent about $6,000.00 for all of them.

I'm running all Adobe software CS6 Production Suite and many plug-ins. I would not have any other way, It also allows me to keep my system pretty cutting edge.
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Old March 27th, 2014, 04:28 AM   #9
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

While you're at it, James, switch to Adobe CC, there's only a short adjustment from FCP7 but you'll wonder how you did without it. This way you're not limited to expensive Macs as it runs on Windows as well (with more filters & transitions than the OSX version).

I am shooting a GH2 (1080i25) a GH3 (1080p50 and 25p) and an old Sony Z5 (1080i25 but 1440x1080). As long as I use a 1080i sequence I edit all three different formats in the same sequence with no issues at all. No rendering, no transcoding, just straight from the source files. That's on an early 2009 quad core Xeon Mac Pro with an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580.

If you still want OSX you can still build your own:

How to Build a Hackintosh

Cheers.
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Old March 27th, 2014, 10:42 AM   #10
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

Investigate Final Cut Pro X, it's time to migrate from FCP7 wherever you end up. I use GH3, GH2 and XDCam footage plus most of the odd stuff I get sent from clients on FCPX all the time without any issues. It's a great program that will work on your computer and only $300 for tons of features.
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Old March 27th, 2014, 11:24 PM   #11
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Re: New to GH3 Motion Picture Recording

James, I find there's very little noticeable difference in quality at the end no matter which .mov option I choose. I've sat down and scaled stuff up, graded one against the other and unless I scrutinise it very closely it's very hard to tell. For me it's more about the workflow and unfortunately when you are editing in FCP7 and having to convert to QT and mixing different formats it's a pain. Although I'm not a fan of FCPX either, it is a better option. I'm a Premiere user and I can mix and match anything on the timeline once it's conformed and sized.

I suppose it's good to think about what your clients are using for the final viewing medium - is it broadcast TV, Blueray, HDweb, DVD ? A lot of stuff is spat out on the export looking pretty ordinary unless it's done correctly through the whole process.
I find AVCHD and all-intra are the least preferred when I shoot.

Last edited by Chris Duczynski; March 28th, 2014 at 12:25 AM.
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