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GH4 - Best Video Settings
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  • I have not seen any significant artefacts with 0-255 4k. I have not still tested 16-235. I consider better colorspace more important than possible IQ loss. If your goal is 16-235 and you are not color correcting much it may be better to shoot 16-235.

  • Bit depth is not colorspace. If you have not tested 16-235 then I suggest you do not give advice to others. There is no IQ loss with 16-235. You should read this thread again to understand the reasons for 0-255 vs 16-235.

  • @caveport

    If I have full 8 bit 256 steps YUV color/luma resolution instead of 220 steps it is kind of " YUV color space", maybe still not exactly the right word.

    What is actually a color space in video? How those color coordinates (YUV) is defined. Photos has sRGB and AdobeRGB. Some editors use converted RGB and some native YUV, some use 0-255 and some 16-235 and what about RAW and rec709 or rec2020. It is hard to always use correct words for different video terminology, especially when english is not my mother language.

    One guy has tested these 16-235 and 0-255 IQ artefact difference and he saw no difference.

    The bit depth difference (0-255 has 16% more steps/channel) is still obvious when studying 16-235 vs 0-255 histograms.

    What do you think are the reasons for 0-255?

  • How does histogram work in video mode?

    I have used histogram to get an idea of exposure and light levels but it seems that it is not very accurate. When I load frames in Photoshop I get different histograms compared to ones with shooting situations. One time I tried to expose highlights to right edge of camera histogram and later I figured that there is plenty of levels unused in whites.

    How about zebras? Are they accurate? How to setup and use these?

  • If you are shooting in 0-255 mode, the histogram seems to show 16-235 as darkest and lightest limits. That is, 100% zebra will show at 235 where it should show at 255 when shooting 0-255.

  • I shoot 16-235 because that's the way my avid NLE will map it on import. I believe zebras max out at 95% if you shoot with this luminance setting.

  • Hey everyone! :) I'm glad to be able to join the GH4 conversation again! Here is a quick test grade I did. I shot it in the DCI 4k settings. Color settings are @shian 's. It is a mix of different LUT's from the osiris. Graded with Resolve 11 with a final export through Film Convert just for the grain.

    Weird thing though, when I tried grading and rendering the 4k file directly, it would constantly freeze. I tried both straight out of the camera and prores. Anyone have issues with Resolve lately?

    So what I did was, I downscaled it to 2k, graded it. downscaled again to 1080p. I'm not so much after the detail here yet. Just more on the ability to grade it to my liking. So far so good! I definitely miss RAW or true 422HQ, but it handles really well. I miss being able to save highlights as you will see in the 2nd clip I blew out for the sake of some shadow detail :p

    I am also getting lost in this 16-235/16-255/0-255 debate. I don't see any difference, maybe because I'm not too technical or I don't know where to look. But, I say use what you think suits you best. Its the final product we are more concerned with after all right? BUT knowing the difference of each and what its "advantage" is would be helpful. Like does it mean more highlight detail retention? Less chance of blowing out? I got lost the moment it was brought up :p sorry peeps!

  • The new Mercalli v4 stabilizes GH4 0-255 videos nicely without converting levels to 16-235 like the previous version v3. I found when I watched my same Gh4 0-255 nature videos stabilized by v3 and v4 the difference is quite big. When 255 levels are converted to 220 levels (v3) there seems to be some leveling and compressing of subtle color tones. The V4 0-255 stabilized result is more "photo like" quality and the fine color nyances of nature (greens in grass or reds of autumn) are preserved better.

    I think the case is the same when shooting 0-255 vs 16-235. If the end product is 16-235 we loose the benefit.

  • The new Mercalli CMOS correction is very impressive. It corrects rolling shutter wobbling and vibration better than anything earlier. It is though a very slow process.

  • I've seen ISO 800 and ISO 200 cited at the native ISO of the GH4. Does anyone have any insight into what the native ISO is?

  • I use mine GH3 and GH4 for aerials and sometime I need to make video and photos during one flight. I set it to photo mode (manual), start video recording manually before flight and than shoot photos in flight when needed with remote trigger.

    Two things are confusing me with settings - photo mode is set to manual but in recorded video I see that it record in some auto mode and I don't know how to set it to manual also (is it even possible?).

    During the flight video recording is all time on and number of possible photos in this mode is limited to only 10. Why and is it possible to change that?

    Thank you for answers :)

  • Hi Gizmo:

    Why don´t you film with the option 4k photo chosen and then you can film and take the frames you need from what you fim?

  • It's one option but very often clients don't need 4K and I like to shoot in 50p which is not possible in 4K.

  • a question regarding the 4k photo mode: what would be the difference between saving a picture with the GH4's function or loading the clip into the NLE and making a screengrab? if the GH4's inbuilt function for this offers better quality would it be possible or likely for Panasonic to develop a tool for doing this on the PC? you could much easier navigate through the videos...

  • @PiotrJ it doesn't matter what is being cited as the native ISO of the GH4... If you are in a situation where you actually use your camera you'll know fairly quickly what the best ISO settings are. Until then, why are you even asking? Shoot at 200 ISO and then shoot at 800 ISO and make up your own mind.

  • I shot some test footage out at the ocean this past week, and found some trouble when I went to do some minor grading. I used Film Convert on all of the clips and added the same stock and settings to basically each clip (Using the right profile for CineD, CineV, etc). But I got weird excessive banding/degrading around the sun. I figured it must be a limitation of the camera (8Bit 420) but I felt that it was just so bad something must be wrong.

    Here are the clips in question with only Film Convert applied.

    Is anyone else experiencing these kind of issues? Originally when I saw this I got a little down about the GH4, and was working to save up for the Atomos Shogun, but seeing comparisons online, I didn't see such a HUGE difference. Which some people look at a like a bad thing for the Shogun, I look at such a great thing for Panasonic as to what they have accomplished with the GH4. There is a slight color advantage to 10bit 422 with the GH4, but not so much that careful grading 8bit 420 couldn't match IMO.

    I came across this article on EOSHD. The poster believes that Premiere itself might be adding excessive banding to footage that isn't actually there. I'm not sure if it's Premiere or Film Convert, but something is interpreting the footage wrong.

    In the post they talk about going through DaVinci to get ProRes clips, then exporting through premiere, all of which alleviated the issue. So I decided to test for myself, and using the same clips and only doing quick minor adjustments via curves and a few other sliders, I got this. HD:


    (Not the best youtube compression though)

    I've read elsewhere that Film Converts setup with the GH4 has a lot of people feeling that something is incorrect. Green foliage is turning more brown among other things. After looking back over my previous exports I see that I have to agree, and will stop using Film Convert any further until I see that the issue is resolved.

    I am just amazed at how adding a good contrast curve and doing a few slight adjustments (probably pushing some things to far) the footage really came to life. I have also seen some people doing adjustments for skin tones through Resolve and getting great results. I have seen great footage, and terrible footage online though. I suspect it's mostly due to user error, and not doing a good enough job in post to bring the footage to life. I think everyone should try to give learning some basics in DaVinci a try.

    I say it in the description, but the settings I've gravitated towards are:

    Wide Shots lots of light 0,-5,-5,-3,0 (-5,+5)

    HDR 0,-5,-5,-3,0 (0,0)

    Skin Tones -5,-5,-5,-3,0 (0,0)

  • Im suspecting various things after the Shogun ship and made possible to test the HDMI output from the GH4.

    This is what I write based on this test:

    "There is something strange in the test. The image coming from GH4 w/ Shogun is obviusly crushed in the blacks. Maybe is the config output, or the Shogun, or how you handled the file in Premiere/other, but definetly something is wrong. Second, and this is more hard, did someone notice how the grain structure of the native MP4 and the ProRes is the same? There is NR from camera, but also the temporal smoothing of compression of H264... the noise structure and finesse in the ProRes file must be diferent in nature and this is not happening, so we need more test about this. This may explain the basically null differences between internal/Shogun in the GH4. I research other test and reviews but i cant get good files to compare & analyze."

    Anyone notice this?

  • I think the test should have been done in Std settings with no highlight or shadow adjustment. Also the natural light may have been changing. Don't try to look at 'grain structure' etc after a file has been uploaded and re-compressed.

  • @caveport I download other test ProRes original, and view the full photos from flickr that I suspect is extracted from the original/timeline

  • Anyone else trying the Portrait based settings described here:!GH4-Optimal-Film-Setting-works-in-stills-too/c24o4/8E18836A-F271-4A14-AF0D-C575B9D5F4B6

    The author offers a custom setting based on the Portrait Photo Style with contrast raised and saturation lowered.

    There's a discussion on DVXuser and several shooters are reporting pleasing results.


  • Yes, I use it. I like it very much.

  • @Fran_Guidry I've done a few tests indoors with the Portrait settings listed in the above link. I used the Panny Lieca DG Sumillux 25mm f1.4 and the Lumix 12-35mm f2.8. Blacks are a little bit too crushed for my taste BUT.... Mids look really good, Whites or highlights are better (more cinematic) and the slight adjustment to hue does have merit against the warm magenta color cast of the GH4.

    Whether you like the setting or not - I have to say this is one of the most technically thought out, well founded and professional "personal settings" rationale I've seen presented for the GH4 in a while. Thanks for posting.

    I'm looking forward to see how it performs in sunlight.

  • @Fran @natureflixs @maddog15

    I have also been using these settings for the lat few days. Yes I was also a bit worried about the crushed blacks, but the interesting thing is they retain detail and no real nasties...and its easy to adjust these in post, the mids and color tho are exactly what I love, its more exciting than waiting for V-Log..... for me anyway.

    I have shot several comparisons on skin tones...and what it does is really shift everything to a nice golden undercurrent in the color which really adds a classic cinematic warmth out of the box, I am pretty stoked about this. It totally gets rid of that boiled crayfish/salmon/plastic skin look that the GH4 has at times, as well as somehow softening the contrast on blending areas of the skin, so smoother highlights as well...yes it darkens shadows but it does retain important details.

    No other setting for me anyway has done this so well (all the well known DP's settings...well I havent really liked any of them that I ended up doing my own)

    Yesterday I shot in a high contrast setting outdoors (no skintones in that setting)...the interesting thing was this scene had dark shadows over woodgrain, bright skies, and far off trees, so a difficult scene shooting towards the bright sky with lots of ground stuff as well. I shot this scene in Natural, Cine-D and Michaels portrait first I liked the natural look the best...(for this scene) because the shadows on the woodgrain were pretty good...but on the Portrait settings they were fairly black and dense looking...however in post I was able to lighten them up again and see the detail in the wood grain again.

    The other interesting thing was (especially in Cine-D) the far of trees looked flat, lifeless pasty and 2d and although they were better in natural, it was not by much,,,whereas in his Portrait settings the far off trees had a nice 3d look to them (I am a 3d artist by trade so I know what I am looking for), those trees looked very cinematic, and the colors were great. I would add (for me) its hard to get that kind of dimension and detail in trees starting from Cine-D in matter how much you tweak them, and even more importantly a true soft golden undercurrent is very hard to get too. So once I lifted the shadows I liked his setting the best for that scene as its my go to setting from now on.

  • "boiled crayfish/salmon/plastic skin look" lol !!! That's quite the description hehe. I'm going to try this portrait settings you speak of.

  • @Fran @natureflixs @maddog15 @Astro

    How are these Portrait settings working in low light settings as compared to natural and cinema D? Also, how do they compare in 0-255 vs 16-235?