Learning the camera Lumix G6

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by onlyablur, Dec 6, 2013.

  1. onlyablur

    onlyablur Mu-43 Regular

    51
    Jul 3, 2012
    Hungary
    I have been into photo taking for many years but in terms of technique I'm really just a beginner. I have had a couple different cameras in the past but was always lazy and used mainly auto or aperture priority. But this year, I'd like to put more effort into improving my technique!

    Last week, I got a new G6 and I decided to really learn to use the camera. So this thread is to document my learning experience and motivate myself to get out of my comfort zone. I will regularly update this thread as I go along.

    And if you also own a G6, or you have any suggestion or tips, please do share!


    Firstly, I looked at the white balance. I found the AWB on G6 not very consistent. Outdoor, it tends to give a blueish cast to the picture. And indoor, it gives different results when I photograph the same subject from different angle, with the light staying the same of course. I found the Day Light setting gives better result, both outdoor and indoor (natural light). And for late afternoon scenes I found Cloudy is better.

    I may need to tweak it depending on the light, but at the moment I'm happy with leaving white balance on Day Light.
     
  2. ijm5012

    ijm5012 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 2, 2013
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Ian
    Regarding the WB, you could set the custom WB to your personal liking for clear, outdoor scenes. Use the cloudy/overcast setting when needed outdoors, and use one of the indoor settings for indoors.

    It truly is a great camera. The build quality in terms of material selection leaves a bit to be desired (the camera feels very plasticy), but it should be durable.

    One of the nicest things about the G6 (or Pany M43 cameras in general) is the level of customization. I have modified some of the physical Fn buttons to e-shutter, and focus mode, improving the usability of the camera IMO. I have also changed the quick menu settings as well, optimizing them for my shooting style.

    Coming from a NEX-6, the combination of the customizability and the touch screen really add to making the camera for functional. I know I'm giving up some IQ, but I know I'll take the G6 with me more than the NEX-6 due to the (IMO) superior features of M43 cameras.

    May I ask what lenses you have? The kit 14-42 II is a nice lens, and you can pick up a 45-150 II for $200 on ebay brand new. That too is a great lens, and gives you a lot of range. For low light, you can look at picking up a 20 f/1.7 (first gens go for around $300, and are no different optically than the new version), as it is a great focal length, and is pretty fast as well. For an additional $500, you'll have 14-150mm covered, and have a capable, fast, pancake prime.

    I am using the 14-140 II and the 20mm at the moment, but plan on picking up the 12-35 and the 35-100 next year.
     
  3. Bif

    Bif Mu-43 Veteran

    380
    May 28, 2012
    San Angelo TX
    Bruce Foreman
    I would try using the WB presets for awhile and see how that works for you as far as WB goes. On my gear it seems fairly accurate, AUTO WB can vary too much. Learn to do CUSTOM WB on anything really important.

    The best thing you can do to learn and improve your photography is to learn exposure theory and concepts. With all the tutorials around the web this is a lot easier than it sounds, many are well illustrated so you can begin to "visualize" exposure and the effect of ISO, aperture, and shutter speed settings on exposure. As you do this find the menu items for CONSTANT PREVUE and EXP.METER and set both to ON.

    What this will do is insure that in "M"anual mode (dial on top) for stills and EXPOSURE MODE in motion picture (movie cam icon on dial on top) set to M (usual four choices P,A,S,M), any changes you make in exposure settings will cause the EVF or LCD image to lighten or darken accordingly.

    This way you'll be able to see your changes visually (this will NOT WORK in any of the auto modes).

    I don't have a G6 but I did have GH2's and now work with GH3's and an OMD E-M5.

    Good luck, the G6 is a great value for the money and a pretty good replacement for the GH2.
     
  4. onlyablur

    onlyablur Mu-43 Regular

    51
    Jul 3, 2012
    Hungary
    Although the camera feels quite plasticy, the materials used mean it is very light weight, and I like that a lot. One of the main factors of me choosing a new camera is the weight. Because for me, the lighter it is, the more likely I will bring it with me everywhere.

    I have 3 native lenses: 14-140 II that came with the camera, PL 25 1.4 and Oly 14-42 (I don't use this one anymore); and a couple of manual focus lenses. For the time being, I think these satisfy my need so won't be looking to add more lenses.

    ijm5012, how do you find the quality of jpeg from G6? or do you only shoot raw? I'm thinking if it is possible to tweak the jpeg output to my liking and as good as an edited Raw, then I will just stick with jpeg.
     
  5. onlyablur

    onlyablur Mu-43 Regular

    51
    Jul 3, 2012
    Hungary
    Thank you for the tips Bruce! I have turned EXP METER to ON, but I couldn't find CONSTANT PREVUE in the menu. Maybe it's GH3 specific?

    From many reviews I see that the G6 has a very capable video on par with GH2. I sure will be learning to do video too! I take mainly still pictures so to nail that first will be my priority now.
     
  6. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Veteran

    426
    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    As far as I can tell , the G6 does not have a constant preview mode. I do have one of the buttons mapped to show the preview and use it for depth of field confirmation.
     
  7. ijm5012

    ijm5012 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 2, 2013
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Ian
    You have a very similar lens line up to mine (Pany 14-140 II, 14-42 II, 20 f/1.7). I'm looking to pick up the 12-35 & 35-100 early next year to round out my kit.

    As for the JPEG output, I haven't really had time to play around with the camera in good light yet. I've shot JPEG for the past year, but I recently purchased Lightroom (took advantage of a 50% off deal) so I am now shooting raw+JPEG that way I have the JPEG images as back up just in case.
     
  8. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Sep 5, 2011
    I think constant preview only works in M mode, for some odd reason.
     
  9. ThomD

    ThomD Mu-43 Veteran

    426
    Jun 1, 2013
    SF Bay Area
    Not for me. I just checked f5.6, 1/1000 and the display looks fine until I hit the preview button. The histogram shows massive under exposure and I'm getting the exposure warning flash, but the live image is fine. Still only for me. It might be different in video mode.

    I think people need to remember that every single camera in the Panasonic line has some camera specific behaviors and stop assuming that what works in a GX7/GH2 works in a G6.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. onlyablur

    onlyablur Mu-43 Regular

    51
    Jul 3, 2012
    Hungary
    Regarding Photo Styles:

    I have played with all the settings and found this work for me:

    Contrast 0
    Sharpness -3
    Saturation 0
    NR -5

    I find "Portrait" gives a skin tone that's most pleasing to my eye out of all the Photo Styles, and "Scenery" is great used outdoor.
     
  11. Robstar1963

    Robstar1963 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    901
    Jun 10, 2011
    Isle of Wight England UK
    Robert (Rob)
    Do you have the 'Touch Tab' feature activated so that you can use the inactive LCD screen to move the focus points with the tip of your thumb whilst looking through the VF ?
    Regards
    Rob
     
  12. onlyablur

    onlyablur Mu-43 Regular

    51
    Jul 3, 2012
    Hungary
    Hi Rob, no I haven't tried this feature yet. In what situation do you find it useful? Thanks
     
  13. davidedric

    davidedric Mu-43 Regular

    81
    Nov 24, 2013
    Cheshire, UK
    Dave