Tag Archives: 4k 60p

iPhone 13 is years behind in Slow Motion!

Apple has finally announced the iPhone 13 which may be one of the most underwhelming refreshes of the handset in many years. While there is a lot of new stuff, nothing added is really groundbreaking in the way previous phones have awed when it comes to features in imaging. It is certainly a clear refinement of nearly every aspect of the hardware and software with better low light gathering and a first for a phone the addition of ProRes recording at 1080p and 4k 30p depending on the phone storage spec.

There are neat features like rack focusing which allows for AI-assisted machine learning depth of field selection based on people’s faces whenever their eyes are visible and or enter or exit the frame.  It is kind of gimmicky as it seems to do away with precise manual control of the feature but this is yet to be explored fully by reviewers. When it comes to Slow Motion capture, we have essentially no change for the 4th year in a row! → Continue Reading Full Post ←

BEST SLOW MOTION CAMERAS OF 2020!

BEST SLOW MOTION CAMERAS OF 2020

As the end of 2020 nears, it’s time to take a look back through the year’s camera releases amid the COVID 19 chaos, and see which delivered on the price/performance bracket with slow motion frame rates as the primary goal.  Phone slow motion took a back seat this year as the interest of the feature in phones was subdued or even eliminated. Our Best Slow Motion Cameras Of 2020 have been selected and ordered by recommendation!

We saw some surprises including a mostly affordable 4k slow motion solution and the adoption of 4k 120fps on many cameras which makes us think 240fps at UHD should be something to think about in the coming years as a regular option once 8k video is commonplace on consumer recording devices and TVs. The increase in resolution should theoretically allow for a lot of 4k frame rates to be offered as 8k delivers 4x the pixel count of 4k for any given frame rate. Keep on reading for our 2020 picks!

BEST SLOW MOTION CAMERAS of 2020:

Without further ado here are what we believe are the best value slow motion cameras in their respective categories for the year 2020:

Best Slow Motion Phone Category:

3rd Place) Sony Xperia 5 II:

The Sony Xperia 5 II is all about capturing the best video possible on a smartphone and in HDR. The kick here is that the phone is capable of 4k 120fps in full HDR which is pretty much class-leading.

The footage below will give you a taste of what the phone can do. In good light, it will let you capture excellent quality 4k 120p footage with the possibility to grade as it records a gradable flat profile.  In low light, it will be a pretty unremarkable image with grain and artifacts as could be expected from the light requirements when shooting at high speed.

Sony Xperia 5 II: 4K 120fps video footage by CNET Highlights:

Sony Xperia 5 II Slow Motion Specs:

  • 120fps 4k
  • 60fps 1080p

This is one of the first phones to offer 120fps in 4k which will probably become a standard spec in 2021 for flagships. However absent is the slow motion at 1080p which considering the 4k oomph, it should have been capable of 480fps at 1080p or similar. It is a shame that the spec was completely avoided considering HDR in 120fps 4k requires 240fps full pixel readout before merging.  In theory, 240fps non-HDR is possible on this phone but not available for unspecified reasons. Phones are becoming more powerful by the day and this is one that has our attention. The just under $1k price tag is not ideal but some of the best phones are going to cost you.

2nd Place) OnePlus 8T:

One Plus continues to offer compelling slow motion features on their phones with 480fps 1080p and up to 480fps at 720p.  It gives you a quad 48MP camera module which is literally insane considering the phone sells for under $750USD and has 120hz refresh rate. Feature-wise it has probably everything under the sun and then some and will not disappoint in the performance realm.

Fireworks in Slow motion – OnePlus 8T 480fps in dark by sternking: → Continue Reading Full Post ←

Panasonic Lumix BGH1 Slow Motion at 240fps is good!

Panasonic Lumix BGH1 Slow Motion

The Panasonic Lumix BGH1 is a strange camera if you are used to DSLR or Mirrorless camera body styles. It is tiny and full of connections with no screen unless you provide one via a computer that is tethered or an HDMI field monitor.  It uses the same dual ISO sensor found on the Panasonic Lumix GH5s which is a very good low light camera in a Micro 4/3ds package.  The BGH1 has a better internal recording set of options than the GH5s but it is more intended as a tethered studio solution with the addition of Genlock synch and SDI out.

The camera also has VFR or a Variable frame rate mode which is identical to the Lumix GH5s as it records from 1fps to 240fps in Full HD 1080p and delivers pretty good performance up to 200fps then lowers the quality along with providing a small added crop to the image at 225fps and 240fps. It is still not as sharp as regular 1080p video and the codec is saved at a lower bit rate but having 240fps as an option is great.

Panasonic LUMIX BGH1 Video Specs:

Video Modes: AVC-Intra/AVC-LongG/H.264 Long GOP/H.265/MOV 4:2:2 10-Bit:
4096 x 2160p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (100 to 400 Mb/s)
3840 x 2160p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (100 to 200 Mb/s)
3328 x 2496p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (100 to 400 Mb/s)
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (100 to 200 Mb/s)
AVC-Intra/AVC-LongG/H.264 Long GOP/H.265/MOV 4:2:0 8-Bit:
4096 x 2160p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (100 to 150 Mb/s)
3840 x 2160p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (100 to 150 Mb/s)
3328 x 2496p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (100 to 150 Mb/s)
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/24/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (100 Mb/s)
AVC-Intra/AVC-LongG/H.264 Long GOP/H.265/MP4 4:2:2 10-Bit:
3840 x 2160p at 23.98/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (72 to 100 Mb/s)
AVC-Intra/AVC-LongG/H.264/H.264 Long GOP/H.265/MP4 4:2:0 8-Bit:
3840 x 2160p at 23.98/25/29.97 fps (100 Mb/s)
1920 x 1080p at 23.98/25/29.97/50/59.94 fps (24 to 28 Mb/s)VFR Mode 1-240fps Full HD 1080p (24 to 28 Mb/s) 

As you can see, the camera is capable of recording up to 60fps in 10 bit 4:2:2 internally which is better than other m4/3 lumix cameras that top out at 4:2:0 color space in this mode.

Of note is that the VFR Panasonic Lumix BGH1 Slow Motion mode is limited in bit rate from 24Mbits/sec to 28Mbits/sec which is passable but hardly ideal since the image is more compressed.  The quality of the VFR should be identical to the GH5s and the sample below by the great youtube reviewer Richard Wong you can see the softness associated with 240p in VFR.  We are told that up to 200fps the image looks a bit better and there is no crop associated with it.

Pretty In-Depth Panasonic Lumix BGH1 by Richard Wong: 

As you can see in the excellent in-depth review above, the camera has Auto Focus that is pretty similar to the other cameras in the Lumix line and suffers from the same pulsating qualities of the DfD Depth from Defocus algorithm used by Panasonic. We are no fans of it for video even when it has improved a lot. For AF to work reliably you need to have dual Pixels in the sensor with Phase and contrast-detection like those on systems from Canon or Sony.

The camera is very small and it is ideal for drones that can carry the 545g of the body plus a lens.  At $1,997.99 at Adorama Camera it is about the same price as a Panasonic S5 which is a full-frame camera that delivers even better performance in low light and has a photo mode and screen.  The S5 in our view is a better overall camera for the majority of people but the BGH1 is geared to a different market altogether.

You could build a studio with them as they have Genlock timecode sync and SDI out which is what you want for tethering many of these cameras together. The uses for a camera like this are plenty considering its great low light performance and beautiful image with 13 stops of Dynamic Range when Shooting V-Log L.

Pricing and availability:

Panasonic LUMIX BGH1 – Review – Unboxing the box camera by extrashot: → Continue Reading Full Post ←

Slow Motion on DJI Pocket 2 & Fuji X-S10 Offers 240fps!

Slow Motion on DJI Pocket 2 & Fuji X-S10

Two very different new cameras were released this week that are able to shoot in 240fps Full HD 1080p. One is the Fujifilm X-S10 which is an all-rounder mirrorless camera with 6 stop IBIS and cinema video profiles for $999 body only, the other is the sequel to the very well received DJI Osmo Pocket now named DJI Pocket 2 dropping the OSMO part of the name & starting at $349 in its most basic form. Slow Motion on DJI Pocket 2 & Fuji X-S10 is close on both.

Both cameras are able to do 120fps as well but the interest peaks at 240p where the speed makes things moving slower more detailed, especially people as at that speed lifeforms moving relatively slow are excellent subjects. For faster animals like birds or flying insects, you need many more frames per second, usually in the 700+ range to create a good enough effect.

Slow Motion on DJI Pocket 2 & Fuji X-S10 – Two cameras that are very different but can shoot the same fps!

Fuji X-S10 Video Modes:

Video Recording Modes H.264/MOV 4:2:0 8-Bit
DCI 4K (4096 x 2160) at 23.976p/24.00p/25p/29.97p [100 to 200 Mb/s]
UHD 4K (3840 x 2160) at 23.976p/24.00p/25p/29.97p [100 to 200 Mb/s]
DCI 2K (2048 x 1080) at 23.976p/24.00p/25p/29.97p/50p/59.94p [50 to 200 Mb/s]
Full HD (1920 x 1080) at 23.976p/24.00p/25p/29.97p/50p/59.94p/100p/119.88p/200p/239.76p [50 to 200 Mb/s]

So starting with the Fuji X-S10 we cans ee that it has a plethora of video recording modes with the absence of the now much coveted 4k 60p which is not here in any form. We do have a 2k cinema mode with 60p which is an ok consolation prize but in a world of 4k it seems they could have added that 4k 60p just to be competitive.

We get 100fps and 200fps at 1080p in PAL format and 120fps and 240fps in NTSC mode. As far as we know every camera can be switched with a single menu to be able to use either of the two systems.

The great news here is that the slow motion modes at 1080p offer up to 200Mb/s in the codec which is pretty remarkable considering not many cameras pass 50Mb/sec in these modes.

The bad news is that the slow motion seems a bit mushy and pixelated which is an unwelcome sight. We found a short video showing this mode at the video below at 8:16:

Fujifilm X-S10 Hands-on Review by DPReview TV:

While we need more samples for full confirmation it does look more like a 720p up-rez than true 1080p, which is common in cameras that shoot these kinds of frame rates and are not dedicated slow motion cameras.  Even Jordan the reviewer above states that the quality of the footage at 240p is nothing to brag about and it is pretty low quality. Kind of sad considering the maximum bitrate of 200Mbps at 1080p.

The Fuji X-S10 is an interesting camera that can do a lot of things right, it is great that it offers very good frame rates as options and we will re-visit this camera in the future when more samples are available. If you are a Fuji system enthusiast, we actually think the new X-S10 is probably the best bargain for a powerful camera in Fuji Land and you really cannot go wrong if you want to shoot video with its great stabilization and flip out Vari-Angle screen.

DJI Pocket 2 Video Modes:

Slow Motion:

  • 240 fps Recorded at 1920 x 1080p
  • 120 fps Recorded at 1920 x 1080p
Video Rec Formats 3840 x 2160p at 24/25/30/48/50/60 fps (100 Mb/s MP4 via H.264/AVC, MPEG-4)
2720 x 1530p at 24/25/30/48/50/60 fps (100 Mb/s H.264/AVC, MPEG-4)
1920 x 1080p at 24/25/30/48/60 fps (100 Mb/s MP4 via H.264/AVC, MPEG-4)

The DJI Pocket 2 is a very impressive device. On the one hand, it has a larger sensor than its predecessor, one rivaling the old P&S prosumer cameras like the Canon G series back in the last decade.  The sensor is  1/1.7″ 64 Megapixels which allows for 8x true zoom crop on the image if needed.

On the other hand, it has a gimbal that is the main selling point that this camera has going for it. A true stabilized system akin to those on DJI drones but on your pocket/hand.  The performance of stabilization is remarkable and the addition of an optional lavalier mic. option with a clip-on module makes it ideal for Vloggers to shoot on a minute and cheap all in one package.

The slow motion modes at 120fps and 240fps are there and easily accessible which is great news since the original Pocket maxed out at 120fps with a 200fps hack that was not really usable.

We found a couple of great samples of slow motion 120p and 240p in the video review below at 9min 45seconds run time:

DJI Pocket 2 | Wider FOV, Bigger Sensor, 240fps by Potato Jet: → Continue Reading Full Post ←

iPhone 12 Pro Slow Motion is best yet for Apple!

iPhone 12 Pro Slow Motion

The iPhone 12 line is a continuation of what Apple has been hinting at since it got serious about video recording on their phones.  However, there is no increment in the maximum frames per second the phone is able to record with the 120p and 240p at 1080p as the maximum the phone is able to record. There is also what could be a feature that is missing that of 120fps 4k considering the phone is already recording 120fps at 4k for HDR video and then delivering it in a 60p wrapper.

With all that said the phone has impressive video and photo specs that will have rivals trying to compete in outlandish features like super zooms or more than 3 cameras to be able to get the spotlight off the iPhone.  There is no question the iPhone 12 is the best camera phone Apple has ever delivered but isn’t this the same result every year when a new device from the company is released? Yes and there lies the problem of yearly upgrades only getting incremental updates and not leapfrog features.

Video Recording iPhone 12 Pro:

  • HDR video recording with Dolby Vision up to 60 fps
  • 4K video recording at 24 fps, 30 fps, or 60 fps
  • 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps or 60 fps
  • 720p HD video recording at 30 fps
  • Optical image stabilization for video (Wide)
  • 2x optical zoom in, 2x optical zoom out; 4x optical zoom range (iPhone 12 Pro)
  • Digital zoom up to 6x (iPhone 12 Pro)
  • 2.5x optical zoom in, 2x optical zoom out; 5x optical zoom range (iPhone 12 Pro Max)
  • Digital zoom up to 7x (iPhone 12 Pro Max)
  • Audio zoom
  • Brighter True Tone flash
  • QuickTake video
  • Slo‑mo video support for 1080p at 120 fps or 240 fps
  • Time‑lapse video with stabilization
  • Night mode Time-lapse
  • Extended dynamic range for video up to 60 fps
  • Cinematic video stabilization (4K, 1080p, and 720p)
  • Continuous autofocus video
  • Take 8MP still photos while recording 4K video
  • Playback zoom
  • Video formats recorded: HEVC and H.264
  • Stereo recording

Video Recording iPhone 12 (NON PRO):

  • HDR video recording with Dolby Vision up to 30 fps
  • 4K video recording at 24 fps, 30 fps, or 60 fps
  • 1080p HD video recording at 30 fps or 60 fps
  • 720p HD video recording at 30 fps
  • Optical image stabilization for video (Wide)
  • 2x optical zoom out
  • Digital zoom up to 3x
  • Audio zoom
  • Brighter True Tone flash
  • QuickTake video
  • Slo‑mo video support for 1080p at 120 fps or 240 fps
  • Time‑lapse video with stabilization
  • Night mode Time‑lapse
  • Extended dynamic range for video up to 60 fps
  • Cinematic video stabilization (4K, 1080p, and 720p)
  • Continuous autofocus video
  • Take 8MP still photos while recording 4K video
  • Playback zoom
  • Video formats recorded: HEVC and H.264
  • Stereo recording

IPhone 12 Pro Slow Motion Samples are pending:

We received some so-called slow motion samples from the iPhone 12 but we have determined that they are fake and not from the phone themselves.  The iPhone 12 ships on October 23rd so any samples you might see online could only be from review units and there was no real video quality review that was authenticated. We will have to wait some time for the iPhone 12 video samples to start coming out.  We expect increased dynamic range and better overall noise profile on the iPhone 12 vs the 11, hopefully, we will see a real improvement in the way the phone captures slow motion in 1080p without much in the way of artifacts and aliasing.

Dolby Vision Recording on iPhone 12:

Dolby Vision | Demo | Dolby by Dolby:

In the video above you can see that Dolby Vision is basically a set of technologies that encode video in HDR with high precision color and brightness values that try to mimic reality. The new iPhone 12s record in Dolby Vision which probably use the high frame rate recording (60p for 30p) and 120p for 60p) HDR.

It is of note that slow motion video at 120fps or 240fps in 1080p will not use Dolby Vision as you would need those frame rates doubled to record it. It is a technology best used by 4k recording up to 60fps.

Of course, you will not get Hollywood production quality footage on the phone but it is still going to deliver a better image than your average camera due to the color science behind it.  Also of note is that you will need a TV, monitor or projector that has Dolby Vision compatibility to experience this high dynamic range video footage recording feature.

If you have such a TV we can recommend the clip below to test it:

Perfect Black HDR 8k Dolby Vision by Eugene Belsky: → Continue Reading Full Post ←

Panasonic S5 Slow Motion 180fps is Low Res!

Panasonic S5 Slow Motion

Now that Panasonic has officially announced the Lumix S5 Full frame camera which we saw as a direct replacement for the GH5 line even when now it seems a GH6 may be in the cards for a future release, it is now time to examine the slow motion modes on the camera to see if they stand a chance at becoming a feature which will be a seller for the new device or just one more feature.

When the GH5 was announced about 3 years ago it came with a 180fps 1080p mode that was better than many camera’s 120fps modes and quickly became our favorite Lumix camera for slow motion as we noticed how the quality of the 240fps mode on the GH5s low light geared camera was heavily inferior in resolution. The GH5 really became the best value along with the G9 for 180fps slow-mo modes in Full HD.

Panasonic Lumix S5 Main Features:

  • 24.2MP Full-Frame CMOS Sensor
  • UHD 4K60 Video,10-Bit Internal Recording
  • 120p, 150p and 180p Full HD Modes*
  • Slow Motion AF Tracking up to 150fps in Full HD!
  • V-Log, HDR, and Dual Native ISO
  • 2.36m-Dot 0.74x-Magnification OLED LVF
  • 3.0″ 1.84m-Dot Free-Angle Touchscreen
  • Contrast-Detect 225-Area DFD AF System
  • 5-Axis Sensor-Shift Image Stabilization
  • ISO 100-51200, Up to 7 fps Shooting
  • 96MP High-Res Mode, Dual SD Card Slots
  • MSRP: $1,997.99  Body Only or $2,297.99 with 20-60mm Kit lens!
  • Pre-order includes a Free Sigma 45mm f2.8 Lens Via Mail-In Rebate

First the Good:

The 24MP sensor is excellent in low light, it will perform extremely well compared to Micro 4/3ds or APS-C cameras but it will not beat the low light king of cameras the Sony a7s Mark II or III.

The camera can shoot 10-bit internal up to 60fps but it will have an S35 crop at the 60fps 4k mode.  The sensor stabilization is not the best out there but it is quite got at up to 6.5 stops with sensor+lens correction.

If you pre-order the camera you get a free Sigma 45mm f2.8 Lens via mail-in rebate which seems either overly generous or somewhat suspect of fear of people jumping ship to other systems.  We feel this is a pretty good deal especially if you also get the kit lens as that one is over $300 USD discounted if you order it with the camera.

From the samples, we have seen the quality in stills and video is as good as the S1 and S1H with very impressive color characteristics that are as close to the Canon color range as we have seen.  Panasonic has done an excellent job with their color science since the GH5 and it shows how good it has become here.

The Bad:

We get the DfD Autofocus system with no Phase detection pixels which in our view are the only way to go for reliable video AF.  In the early tests, it seems to do quite well compared to previous Panasonic Efforts and most of the pulsing is gone in people tracking scenes.  However, the really depressing thing is that the reliability is not a 100% some would call it 80% or even less which means you simply cannot rely on it for mission-critical footage.

If your camera can only have in focus 8 out of 10 shots then you cannot rely on the video tracking AF for paid work.  Most footage is recorded with the expectation that focus can be controlled, if it fails then you lose time in production and worse yet if you find yourself in the edit suite a month later looking at out-of-focus OOF shots on your edit bay, then you have a huge problem on your hands.

Panasonic needs to stop clinging to DfD as their single do-it-all AF solution and change to a hybrid Phase+Contrast AF system like Sony or Canon are using.  This continues to be the Achilles heel of the system and they need to own up to their mistake not double down on it with every camera release.

For many users, the AF on the camera is good enough and many Vloggers will shoot with it just fine but professional videographers will need to go to Canon or Sony for reliable AF as even the flagship Panasonic S1H suffers from even worse DfD AF performance.

What about the Slow Motion?

Now on to our website focus, that of slow motion video. The Panasonic Lumix S5 is capable of 60fps 4k video at 10 bit with an s35 crop in the sensor at that mode and also a cropped 150 and 180fps mode in 1080p Full HD recording.

The good news is that now we have AF tracking up to 150fps in full HD. The bad news is, it is contrast-detect DfD which means the same problems as the regular mode. But in practice, higher frame rates offer better AF performance as the camera samples more times/sec so it can lock into subjects better!

Slow-Mo Modes & Bit Rates:

  • 4k 60fps 10-Bit Internal
  • 1080p 120fps, 150fps slight crop and resolution loss.
  • 1080p 180fps – More severe crop and resolution loss.
  • H.264/MP4 4:2:0 8-Bit
    UHD 4K (3840 x 2160): 23.976p/25p/29.97p [100 Mb/s]
    Full HD (1920 x 1080):
  • 23.976p/25p/29.97p/50p/59.94p/100p/119.88p/180p [20 to 28 Mb/s]

So we now have what could be the let down of this camera and that is the low bit rate quality in 1080p slow motion of [20 to 28 Mb/s].  That is the exact same bit-rate as that on the 3-year-old GH5 camera which is not ideal. It is also more of a 720p image up-scaled to 1080p which looks aliased and soft.

We rather have a 100Mbps mode like that possible on regular up to 30p and 60p full HD recording modes.  Slow motion is crippled by using one-third of the bit-rate allocation in what we believe would be related to camera memory due to the faster frame rates. However, the S5 has a massive memory buffer that should easily be capable of recording 100Mbps 1080p at 120, 150 and 180fps options.

The excellent video preview by DPreview below at 11 minutes 7 seconds shows the slow motion mode samples in action with a heavy resolution loss at 1080p 180fps.

Panasonic S5 First Impressions Review by DPReview:

Another sample below shows many more slow motion clips which seem to be at 150fps which offer Continuous AF in Slow Motion up to that point. 180fps will not use AF. Forward to 7Min for the samples.

Panasonic S5 – hands-on review and full autofocus test by extrashot: → Continue Reading Full Post ←