K7 movie mode - tips/tricks?


SteveLedger

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 11:46
I admit I don't use the movie mode much because I have a decent camcorder, but for those times when I don't have it with me I've tried using the movie mode to capture some moments.
The problems I have are sharpness (whichever lens is on the cam at the time, the results are always soft) grain, white balance and colour saturation. I don't seem to have any control over these (or I'm missing something?)

Before I invest time drilling through the manual and spending hours on test clips, does anyone have some tips and tricks when using the K7 for movie clips?
Or are there any known articles specialising in the K7 for movie clips?

I've seen some really pro results from this model, but I just can't seem to get it.

generator

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 12:22
i have never used that myself but i would like to add what editing program would you use for movie mode ?
Thanks Richard

Pentaxophile

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 12:22
White balance* and colour profile (e.g. 'Vibrant, Muted, BW etc) are best set manually when you are in Movie Mode.

Hit the exposure lock button to lock the brightness / gain.

If the picture is grainy you need more light. Open the aperture, or turn up the lights! Avoid fluorescent lights. Opening up the aperture also creates more of an interesting look.

*I've noticed that WB does actually creep slightly, even when set manually. (This applies to stills as well as movies! ) Selecting the appropriate WB setting reduces this, but the best bet is to avoid panning between outdoor and tungsten lit areas.
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Last Edited by Pentaxophile on 25/06/2012 - 12:27

Pentaxophile

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 12:23
generator wrote:
i have never used that myself but i would like to add what editing program would you use for movie mode ?

You can use virtually anything from Windows Movie Maker for a quick hatchet job, through to Sony Vega.
[link=https://500px.com/will_brealey/[/link]

SteveLedger

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 12:37
@Pentaxophile: Thanks.
When I said 'grainy' I don't mean noise. The resultant video is not smooth, it's gritty if you like. I only use the video mode outside in full daylight.
Hmmm - for some reason WB and colour profiles were 'Unavailable in video mode' when I was using this on the weekend, but now they are? That's frustrating, because I was totally annoyed by the lack of control! Can't think what I did different..
Yes, I lock exposure, I learned that one some time ago
I also pre focus before shooting.

@generator: Video editing software depends on the worth of the clips I have gathered.
At the high end of value I will use APE 10. At the lowest end I will use FreeMake to join clips with fades.
In between I have VideoPAD for quick compilations with overlays and PiP if necessary.

Pentaxophile

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 12:49
I'm not sure what you mean by gritty. If it's not the 'snow' caused by the camera 'gaining up' the picture, perhaps it's compression artefacts? Imaging resource suggests using only the highest quality setting, to avoid artefacts.
[link=https://500px.com/will_brealey/[/link]

SteveLedger

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 13:07
Yes, always on highest quality setting.
I could upload a short clip shot on Saturday if you like to see what I mean? It's almost 60Mb though.

Pentaxophile

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 13:17
Would be good, yes. Mind you my PC is very bad at playing HD video - judders and stutters....
[link=https://500px.com/will_brealey/[/link]

SteveLedger

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 15:06
OK, here's a short clip, right off the camera
https://dl.dropbox.com/u/250070/videos/IMGP4140.AVI

This is all rather academic I admit, what I'm really interested in is how other people have used the K7 for movie clips to their satisfaction and if they have any tips etc.
It's very likely I'm being a tad fussy and expecting too much, the K7 was the first to include video after all so it's not surprising that there's room for improvement (I'm sure the K30 video mode is very good)

Thanks

Pentaxophile

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 16:06
Yes I can see what you mean by gritty. There's a funny look to the trees, a bit of moire perhaps?

I have a couple of clips uploaded to YT

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bs281wQzr9Q&feature=g-upl http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=32OnPmVYmSc&feature=g-upl
[link=https://500px.com/will_brealey/[/link]

SteveLedger

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 23:27
Pentaxophile wrote:
Yes I can see what you mean by gritty. There's a funny look to the trees, a bit of moire perhaps?

I have a couple of clips uploaded to YT

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bs281wQzr9Q&feature=g-upl http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=32OnPmVYmSc&feature=g-upl

The YouTube conversion process changes the appearance of the originals, which is why I uploaded the direct 'from the camera' sample. But in any case, your results look way 'smoother' than anything I ever get with the K7.
Yes, 'moire' would be a way to describe what I get with all video clips.. Is there a way to prevent this?
What settings are you using? Do you use one lens mostly?
I used the 18-250mm SMC ED AL(IF) for my clip.

Re: Pentector post.
Is there not a 'report post' function to this forum? It's probably a spam bot.

Transit

Link Posted 25/06/2012 - 23:43
Pentector wrote:
....
Re: Pentector post.
Is there not a 'report post' function to this forum? It's probably a spam bot.

'Report problem' right at the bottom of the page
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SteveLedger

Link Posted 26/06/2012 - 03:12
I've tried almost every available setting and different lenses without any satisfaction this morning. You know my Galaxy 2 phone shoots much better video
In fact the audio is even better on the GS2 than the K7, which is always hissy.

Sometimes the best of both worlds could be handy and I'd not need to take both the K7 and camcorder out to a motor sports event with me each time.

EDIT: I found some 'off the camera' samples to download from IR. I have to say that their results are much the same as mine. In fact they also have K5 samples for download and I don't see any improvement in IQ. The drop in framerate of the K5 video (25fps. The K7 is 30fps) is actually making things worse. Moire and that sort of gritty pixel 'twinkling' is irritating.
Maybe I'll just forget that the K7 even has movie mode and stick to carrying the camcorder as well

Thanks for the interest anyway.

SteveLedger

Link Posted 27/06/2012 - 04:56
Just a minor update to this.
I've found that in the chosen colour profile if I dial the contrast right off (far left) but increase the highlight contrast and shadow contrast, I get better results. Also keep the sharpness at neutral.

The other small issue is the built-in mic is very noisy.
I do have a Rode video mic for the camcorder, but it's not always convenient to use on the K7.
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