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I'm struggling with E-M1 video

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by Whatiam, Mar 25, 2014.

  1. Whatiam

    Whatiam Mu-43 Rookie

    19
    Mar 14, 2014
    I've long wanted to have a camera that would allow me to dabble in video. I had hoped my Canon 7D would allow me to do that, but it was far to hard for me to use for video. The GH3 tempted me, but I didn't find it quite good enough to dump my Canon gear. The E-M1 was finally a camera that I felt would satisfy my as a stills camera and also let me do some video. Yes. I read the reviews that pointed out its video shortcomings, but I also read many that claimed that the magical IBIS could make up for a lot, particularly for hand-held video. Well, I have little to complain about when the camera is stationary, but any kind of panning up, down, or sideways, even when done very slowly, results in video that is very jerky and blurry. What I don't know is whether this is due to some fundamental flaw in my technique or that this is just the way it is with this camera. If anyone has any tips or insights I would very much appreciate hearing them.
     
  2. JCWOlson

    JCWOlson Mu-43 Regular

    78
    Mar 9, 2014
    What's your IBIS setting at? 5-axis isn't recommended for video (so says the manual), so maybe give mode 2 or 3 a go.

    Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk
     
  3. Whatiam

    Whatiam Mu-43 Rookie

    19
    Mar 14, 2014
    What I discovered after a lot of very confusing trials is that when shooting video there are only two setting, off or movie IS. This is true whether video is taken with mode dial set to movie or one of the PASM settings. I still haven't figured out everything that is going in movie mode, but I did finally figure out this behavior.
     
  4. JCWOlson

    JCWOlson Mu-43 Regular

    78
    Mar 9, 2014
    I'm sorry, I don't understand what you mean by that it's either on or off - on my E-M5, when I go to the IS options in the Live View panel, I get Off, IS1 - AUTO, IS2 - VERTICAL, and IS3 - HORIZONTAL. The manual recommends using IS2 for movies in which you're panning.

    Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk
     
  5. Whatiam

    Whatiam Mu-43 Rookie

    19
    Mar 14, 2014
    For the E-M1, when in PASM modes, IS options are S-IS1 - Auto, S-IS2 - Veritcal, S-IS3 - Horizontal, and S-IS Auto - Landscape Panning IS. When in Movie mode, only options are M-IS Off or S-IS On. So for example, if I have set M-IS on in Movie mode and S-IS off in Shutter priority mode, IS will be on when taking video from any mode. I shot many videos going through the set of S-IS modes where I could see absolutely no difference, even with S-IS set to off. I was very confused by it.
     
  6. D7k1

    D7k1 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    690
    Nov 18, 2013
    You are correct, the EP5 has that special movie stabilization. I have done several tests (making sure that I'm using a reasonable focal length for Hand Held video (for me that is between 14 & 30mm on the kit zoom. Sitting in a "office" chair and slowly panning I get better video than on my tripod and fluid head for panning. Remember you are shooting 30P, you must pan very (and I mean very, very, very slowly) to get good video (this is also because of the 2o mbyte capture rate of the camera, fast capture = smooth video at a given frame rate).

    I compare this with the D7100 at 30 fps 1080P and I think they are comparable (how the Nikon is at 24 mbyte)> Lots of folks are using the Nikon out to HDMI 4:2:2 and its good enough for Indy work. Start with a WA Focal Length and try shooting still scenes and the slowly work into panning. Just my 2 cents, hope it helps.
     
  7. Whatiam

    Whatiam Mu-43 Rookie

    19
    Mar 14, 2014
    Thanks. Very helpful information. So is it low bit rate or the 30p that makes it susceptible to jerkiness?
     
  8. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    I did some video tests a week or so ago with my E-M1 when out bush, fixed and panning. This is a fixed one taken at night and without image stabilisation I reckon would have been very shaky: http://vimeo.com/89684443. I have bothered to put up the panning ones, as they aren't anything special, but both the day and night shots came out fine.
     
  9. D7k1

    D7k1 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    690
    Nov 18, 2013
    Only partially. When using video I normally manually focus (or auto focus once and then use manual S AF-M). What I would do if I were you, would to go outside and do some fixed video and then using the same settings very slowly pan the area. I’ve had been able to get good video with the EP5 even walking.

    If you pan too fast you will lose detail and get blur. Also most good video is not zooming or panning. High speed slow motion works well for that (120 FPS mostly, 60 FPS in some cases).

    You want to spend some time reading the DVXusers form which is focused on video and has very good DSLR/Panasonic forums, DVXusers.

    Don't use anything but straight video (no filters, use the movie setting on the control dial (don't just push the red button). Hope this helps. Video can be quite frustrating but once you get to know the limitations of the equipment you are using, I thinks it a lot of fun (I've done a lot of business/commercial flim/video in the past). I can't imagine the EM-1 is not at least as good as the EP5 for video, let us know how you come out.
     
  10. Art

    Art Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2011
    San Francisco, CA
    I wonder how does EM-10 compare with its 24mbps bitrate and 3 axis/digital hybrid stabilization.
     
  11. madmaxmedia

    madmaxmedia Mu-43 Veteran

    335
    Feb 20, 2010
    The problem with the Olympus cameras and loss of detail during panning is not so much the bitrate (other cameras do much better with same or even lower bitrate), but that it uses a really subpar codec for encoding.

    Imaging-Resource does a pretty good test video in most all of their reviews where they track a dog chasing a frisbee, with trees in the background. Many cameras do much better, with similar bitrates.

    The E-PM2 and E-PL5 actually do significantly worse than the E-M5.
     
  12. lex22

    lex22 New to Mu-43

    6
    Nov 20, 2013
    Also, make sure you set the shutter speed to 1/60 sec. That made a big difference for me.
     
  13. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    Here's another video I took that weekend, this time panning. I'm not sure what Vimeo did, but the pre-posted video was completely smooth on my screen: https://vimeo.com/90091083.
     
  14. D7k1

    D7k1 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    690
    Nov 18, 2013
    Yes both bit rate and codec do impact it. I just don't think the video is that bad. Also the EP5 use mp4 1080P which is much better than the ACHD 60i stuff. If the 10 is doing 24 mbits @ 1080 30p I would think that it also uses mp4 also. I would think that the EM-1 is similar to these two (don't know for sure). And yes 60 FPS will give you the smoothest video for 30p.

    Here is what image resource says about the EP5 (and I would assume that it carries over to the EM-1 and E10):

    "To test the Olympus PEN E-P5's movie mode, I took it one evening to Cooper Square, a busy hub of pedestrian traffic. It's a simple matter to record movies on the PEN E-P5 no matter what exposure mode you're in, and I had all the options for controlling exposure and focusing that I'd be likely to use. My test footage looks very sharp, and the PEN E-P5's image stabilization does a good job eliminating camera shake while recording.....And while movie quality has improved with the help of sensor-shift I.S. and other tweaks, we were disappointed that Olympus didn't include additional frame rates, offering only 30 fps at 1080p and 720p."
     
  15. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    The E-M1 recording format is MOV* (MPEG-4 AVC/H.264) or AVI (Motion JPEG) at 30fps. When I used Cyberlink Power Director 12 to convert the file to 24fps, it wasn't smooth. But I'm now thinking that maybe I should convert to either 24/25 fps so that when it converts in Vimeo, it might come out smooth. But without being a paid member, you have to wait around 45 min for the conversion to happen before you can see the results.
     
  16. madmaxmedia

    madmaxmedia Mu-43 Veteran

    335
    Feb 20, 2010
    Yeah, I don't think the E-M5 and EP-5 are so bad, it's only with fast panning where you see start to see break up due to the codec getting overwhelmed with too much detail. Videographers go with the Panasonics hands down, but for casual usage these cameras are fine.

    I was shocked at how bad the E-PL5 and E-PM2 videos looked though.
     
  17. Whatiam

    Whatiam Mu-43 Rookie

    19
    Mar 14, 2014
    My problem seems to be with playback on my computer. I uploaded a test clip to Vimeo, and it played fine there. Vimeo converts in to 720p, however, so that was not proof of anything. Went back to the computer and tried playing it with VLC instead of Quicktime. It was definitely smoother, but still with some jerkiness. I then loaded it into iTunes and played it on my large HDTV via AppleTV, and the playback was completely smooth. There was not a single bit of jerkiness anywhere. One more test was to download it to iPad, where it was again perfectly smooth. Doesn't make any sense yo me. The computer is a Mac Mini, 2.6 i7 with four cores, plays the largest Blu-ray MKVs without any problem. I think I'll take the file to an Apple store and try it on a high end iMac. I don't know what else to do.
     
  18. D7k1

    D7k1 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    690
    Nov 18, 2013

    Sony Vegas has a proxy editing that using a lower res to set the edits and works with the full res when you render. I don't know if Premier has this or not. Sony Movie Studio can also do this in a limited format. That way if your computer can't handle the full resolution you can still see your footage when you are working on it and then you can render it to whatever you want.
     
  19. sgreszcz

    sgreszcz Mu-43 Veteran

    439
    Oct 7, 2012
    I have really noticed this recently. My E-M5 output looks much more "film-like" and smooth than my E-PM2 and I'm not talking about image stabilisation. The video output of the E-PM2 has much more what looks to be sharpening artifacts in spite of the settings being the same on both cameras (sharpening set to -2).

    I'm debating selling off both E-M5 and E-PM2 down the road and getting two E-P5 with a VF-4 or getting a E-M10 to replace the E-PM2.
     
  20. sgreszcz

    sgreszcz Mu-43 Veteran

    439
    Oct 7, 2012
    I've been loving my E-M5 video output. It looks great as long as I remember to dial down the sharpening (-2) and I always use the left dial to movie mode to get full manual settings. The front function button is set to single autofocus (S-AF), and I generally set the live histogram to help me set the exposure. I keep the exposure mode in ESP mode, but I don't know if changing this has any advantage to setting exposure in video mode.

    Do you have any specific settings that have helped you get better video with your E-P5? Do you use the VF-4 when shooting video? I'm thinking of ditching my E-PM2 as a second body and go to E-P5 or E-M10 as the image quality of the E-PM2 in video mode is quite a bit worse than the E-M5 (artifacts, video-looking).