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Newbie question: best setting for video focus?

Discussion in 'Filmmaking' started by VincentSD, Mar 17, 2015.

  1. VincentSD

    VincentSD New to Mu-43

    Mar 10, 2015
    What would be the best setting to take causal video of kids and family? I have a E-PM2 with kit lens and 20mm 1.7. I'd love to shoot with max aperture but can't seem to get usable footage and below are the problem I have in each AF mode.

    Continuous: focusing moving back and forth even for static object. This is the worst of the 3 modes for me.
    MF: too slow/hard for kids that moves around and I can never get perfect focus
    Single shot AF: pressing shutter button/tap screen introduces camera shake

    For right now I'm ruling out MF as I just can't keep up with my kids. For continuous AF, can you tell if a different camera (in the same price range) would be significantly better? What are your recommended settings?
  2. tkbslc

    tkbslc Super Moderator

    The downfall of the 20mm is the AF is not smooth and silent. MF is really the only option for video.

    If video AF is a big deal, you might look at the 17mm 1.8 or 25mm instead.

    You can use a small aperture which gives deep DOF and focus becomes less of a factor.
  3. VincentSD

    VincentSD New to Mu-43

    Mar 10, 2015
    Thanks. So you saying the AF-C rocking back-and-forth is because of the lens? If I got 25mm 1.8 it will be much better? Do you see this with other cameras?
  4. tkbslc

    tkbslc Super Moderator

    It's the lens, not the camera. You won't get good AF-C with the 20mm on any camera. Panasonic bodies actually disable AF-C for the 20mm f1.7 because it really doesn't work. You can't even select it with the lens mounted.

    And yes the 25mm f1.8 is way better for video (and stills) AF. I've owned both. I've never owned an E-PM2, but with my GX7 I can just enable AFC and face tracking and it just follows the person around the room automatically. Pretty cool.
  5. VincentSD

    VincentSD New to Mu-43

    Mar 10, 2015
    Thanks a lot TKBSLC! Will try some different lens at a local shop.
  6. addled

    addled Mu-43 Rookie

    Oct 1, 2011
    Marbella, Spain
    While the 20mm is not the faster focusing lens, no lens will give you smooth continuous video autofocus with your camera, it simply doesn't have that feature (and nor do most cameras on the market). There's a reason that even high-end productions use manual focus for video. If you can't keep up in manual, stop down.
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