Which small upgrade should come first?

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    • #72037800
      Avatartal.orbach
      Participant

      I’d really appreciate some advice.
      I make “talking head” style videos, and I want to make a small upgrade to my gear.
      Right now I’m shooting with my smartphone (LG G6) and I use Dedolight 150 spotlights for lighting – these are very high quality (I only have them because my dad used them for work), but not really suitable for these kinds of videos (more for stills and for lighting installations).
      In outdoor lighting, the G6 makes great looking vids, but indoors (which is my only setting), it really doesn’t.

      So, I have two options for this upgrade:
      1. a used Samsung NX3000 camera (and keep current lighting set-up)
      2. more suitable lighting – something like the GVM 480LS, for example (and keep shooting with the phone).

      Which do you think will make a more substantial difference in the quality of my videos and ease of making them?

    • #72037836
      Avatarbobspez
      Participant

      Hard to tell without seeing your existing videos. Post a link.

    • #72037878
      Avatartal.orbach
      Participant

      Here are two videos I made now to illustrate my point. One with low ISO (200), the other with higher ISO (1200).
      https://photos.app.goo.gl/kMobtpy2jqkHb7Hm6

    • #72037990
      AvatarJackWolcott
      Participant

      The image quality in your two examples looks o.k. Major problem is that you’re very back-lit — light bouncing all over the white walls. You can improve your “studio” with a back drop that will minimize the reflected light. I would suggest an inexpensive backdrop on a stand, dark gray with perhaps a darker pattern. This will serve to absorb light and allow your lights to highlight you sitting in front of it.

      The GVM 480LS lights look like a good choice, but you may be able to use what you have by working with placement and diffusion. You can get three-point lighting with only two lights by using one for the key light in front of you and letting that same light bounce off a piece of foam-core to create the back light. Use the second light for fill. Experiment to see what looks good.

      If you want to explore using a soft light try a Chinese paper lantern with a 100w bulb inside. This will give you excellent front lighting at very low cost.

    • #72037995
      Avatarbobspez
      Participant

      I think your main issue is your camera resolution. I suggest you buy a used Lumix FZ80 and shoot in 4K. I bought that camera on ebay for $233 in mint condition about a year ago. The Lumix FZ 80 has quiet continuous autofocus with video and you can use auto or manual settings for iso, aperture and shutter speed. You can shoot 4K segments up to 8 minutes long. With the right settings you don’t need additional light. A desk lamp with a 60 watt equivalent bulb pointed at you from about 8 ft. away and a floor lamp with a 60 watt bulb pointed at the ceiling would suffice to illuminate a 10′ x 11 ft. room.
      Here’s a test video about a minute long I just shot and uploaded to youtube with this camera. Settings were f3.3, 1/60 shutter speed, iso-1250, 4K 30fps.

      • This reply was modified 2 weeks, 3 days ago by Avatarbobspez.
    • #72038036
      Avatartal.orbach
      Participant

      The image quality in your two examples looks o.k.

      It is, but I kinda want it to be better, which is why I’m looking for a small upgrade.

      You can improve your “studio” with a back drop that will minimize the reflected light

      you may be able to use what you have by working with placement and diffusion

      I actually prefer no backdrop, but maybe I have to rethink my studio. Maybe even its location – I have very little space around me to play with light placement, etc.

      Generally, what I’m looking for right now is less about good lighting, in that sense, and more about getting higher image quality (better detail, definition, colors), I think. Would you say that this is not the right priority?

      If you want to explore using a soft light try a Chinese paper lantern with a 100w bulb inside. This will give you excellent front lighting at very low cost.

      Are we talking normal incandescent light?

      • #72038236
        Avatartal.orbach
        Participant

        @bobspez, the sample you shared actually doesn’t look that great – the definition doesn’t seem much better than mine, and the video is rather grainy (probably due to the high ISO). The lighting itself is nice, in terms of color, but this is not my current concern. Right now I’m trying to get better image quality.

      • #72038302
        Avatarbobspez
        Participant

        @tal.orbach. You are correct, but this is the problem with low priced small sensor (less than a 1″ sensor) video cameras when they are not using daylight. In daylight, lower iso and whiter shadow free light produces a sharper image. But for the image I think you are looking for you would need a camera like the Fuji XT3, which takes very sharp video images. Check it out on youtube. However that camera, used, is about $1200 plus another several hundred dollars for the lens.

      • #72038428
        Avatartal.orbach
        Participant

        So what is the justification to upgrade from my phone? It seems the cheaper camera you’re talking about here doesn’t actually do any better.

    • #72038230
      AvatarJackWolcott
      Participant

      Normal incandescent light gives a beautiful, soft warm light. I haven’t tried an LED light. Should work but don’t know about the color. Try it and see.

      Be careful of heat on the paper lantern!

    • #72038235
      Avatartal.orbach
      Participant

      Thanks

    • #72038320
      RockyRocky
      Participant

      You say “in outdoor lighting, the G6 makes great looking vids, but indoors (which is my only setting), it really doesn’t”. If you are using the indoor location as seen in your video I don’t think the Samsung NX3000 upgrade will solve the problem. Seems from what you are saying if you get your lighting right you will then get same result as outdoors. My suggestions for solutions would be use different darker room background, consider defusing the light by attach drawing paper to front and of Dedolight and/or use walls to bounce light onto talent. In similar situations to yours I use a green screen, that way I can use any background I want.

    • #72038330
      Avatartal.orbach
      Participant

      Thanks. I’ll try that (+a few tips I got in other forums), and post back another video.

    • #72038309
      Avatarbobspez
      Participant

      @tal.orbach Just for comparison, here is a test in room light taken with a Pentax 645Z in 1080P.

      As far as what I have seen on youtube samples and tests, I would rate the Fuji XT3 4K video as the best I’ve seen in a consumer camera.

    • #72038409
      AvatarJackWolcott
      Participant

      Bob: I agree with you regarding the camera. But we’re dealing with “talking head” video here. Do we really need 4K for this?

      • #72038414
        Avatarbobspez
        Participant

        Jack, It’s not a necessity but if it’s available then you might as well use it. An advantage of 4K is the ability to crop the frame in the editor without loss of resolution. It gives you more flexibility in the edit. It also can create a slightly sharper image. But it’s not a necessity. The most important thing is content. Most videos on youtube are in 2K so 4K is still in the minority.

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