using E-PM1 as a camcorder

Started Nov 12, 2012 | Questions thread
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Philly OP Senior Member • Posts: 1,118
Re: using E-PM1 as a camcorder

Thanks for your help.  I'm getting a better grasp on everything, after reading your response.  I just went through the video setting and found that the longest allowable shutter speed for 1080p recording is 1/60 sec.  So it sounds like that I should go for even shorter, if possible, to capture the action.  I am assuming that the 60fps recording would then render the action smooth to the eye even if it is a series of frozen shots with minimal blur?

Interestingly, I found that E-PM1 only allows for a min ISO of 400 when doing video.  So I will try to keep to a max of ISO 800, but I am thinking maybe even ISO 1600 would be OK, if needed.

Thanks for mentioning about the lens speed.  I think, since single shot AF at the beginning seems to be a good way of shooting this, I will go ahead and bring my 14-54mm and/or 12-60mm lens so I can get the fastest shutter speed possible, and better vignetting control.  I think probably DOF should still be OK at the wide apertures because I should be pretty far away.

Linus M wrote:

Philly wrote:

I hardly ever use the video capabilities of my digital cameras, but need to help my brother record an indoor volleyball game this Thursday. I don't have much time before then to play around with the video feature on my cameras, so I was wondering if anyone here can help me answer some questions I have regarding how to get the best video out of my camera.

First, the setting will be indoor, probably low light. I will be up on a balcony looking down with my camera on a tripod. My brother has said that he doesn't want any panning--just set the camera so that it can cover the whole court and record.

For video recording, I have Canon S95, Olympus E-PM1, E-PL1, and E-P2. I am thinking that the best camera for video would be the E-PM1, right? So here are my questions:

Yes, E-PM1 is the Best choice. E-PL1 and E-P2 can only record 7 minute clips in mjpg.

1) Is 1080p full HD the best setting? I read that the 720p setting on the E-PM1 has the same bitrate as the 1080p setting, but is there a quality difference between the two, for capturing action video?

I would go with 1080p since there is not that much movement and its not brightly lit.

The H.264 codec as implementet by Olympus is bad in cases of lots of detail, movement, and alot of light.

2) I have 14mm f2.5, 20mm f1.7, 45mm f1.8, and the kit lens 14-42mm IIR. I think I would probably want to use one of the prime (probably 14mm f2.5) after I get there and confirm that the angle of view of the 14mm is appropriate (fits the court, without much room to spare). But just in case I need the flexibility of using the zoom lens to frame the court better, would the quality of the 14-42mm II R lens make a difference in the video quality, resolution wise?

The 14-42 is actually very good for Video. The only problem could be the maximum f3.5 that could be to dark and thus cause motion blur because of too slow shutter speed.

I really don't like the 14-42mm lens because I don't think it picks up enough details. But would this be noticeable for HD video recording? Or should I try to use one of my better resolution lens, to get the best quality? I also have the 12-60mm if I need to use a zoom, but am not too sure how the focus would work with it--I am guessing that I would need to use S-AF to focus on a midpoint and hope that the depth of field would be such that the action of the entire court is covered?

3) If I use the 14-42mm kit lens, should I just set the focusing to C-AF?

Focus once and then leave it alone. Or MF once at set up and then leave it alone.

4) How should I set my exposure? First meter for the lowest ISO possible, and then set the camera to it, instead of using auto ISO? And should I set the exposure mode to manual so that I can select the shutter speed? And what would be a good shutter speed to use in this setting?

Try it out. Iso 400 or 800 should be no problem btw. Make sure the shutter is not too slow.

The brighter the lens the easier to get shorter shutter speeds.

If there's any more considerations that I haven't thought of, please chime in. Thanks for any help, suggestions or comments that anyone can offer.

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