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General thoughts about S1 and/or S1R

iiiNelson

Active member
As the grumpy old bastard I am, why the hell do we need an af system that can pick out people and animals?? I have been able to pick out animals for 45 years, I think my first word was cat!

Whilst I think these 2 cameras are easily the best options now for what I'd want from a 35mm system, i. a good sized, solid, weather sealed camera with an evf that is probably useable, I hate the gfx evf experience, I can't help but feel sad at the fact that photography is moving so far away from being something that requires skill, knowledge and practice and more towards automated nonsense. I saw a video on youtube recently of a "pro" photographer shooting a model with 1 hand in his pocket, his other hand outstretched simply relying on the system to grab eye af, urgh, I'm old.

Anyway, I don't think there's anything not to like about what has been squeezed in to both the S1 and S1r, if I was in the market I'd definitely go try them out when released, they look great all-round cameras. As I'm not, I think I will go back to looking at a Leica m and a couple of nice lenses, just to enjoy the act of photography and knowing when it's right it was because i got it right, not the camera.

Told you I was a grumpy old bastard!

Mat
Well I still think good photography requires skill. Progression, be it through automation or whatever will seemingly make life easier, will always be human nature. In the example you just described we can look at it as one handed operation or we can look at it as offloading mechanical functions to a machine so that we as photographers can focus on composition.

I do agree that better or at least more technologically advanced photography tools have become much more accessible to the masses but I don’t know if that’s a bad thing in general. I guess it’s all in perspective. You seemingly happen to value the idea in that a level of passion should be required to excel, and I don’t totally disagree with you, but if we apply that across the board there would be lots of starving people if grocery stores/markets didn’t exist assuming a person was a terrible hunter/farmer for example. Someone will always invent a way to make life easier for the masses given the ability.

...and yes the M provides one of the few limited opportunities for limited automation so you’re not crazy to desire one.
 

Jorgen Udvang

Subscriber Member
When do cameras get developed to the level where we get video frame grabs as being good enough to replace still shots - sometimes I get the feeling that is where it is all headed.
Even if it's possible, you will not get the best photos this way. Stills and movies are two different ways of telling a story. The best frame to tell the story with one image will often not be part of the video.

And I agree with Mat. Unfortunately, that is not only about photography. Everything is getting computerised and everything will look the same.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2_2lGkEU4Xs
 

iiiNelson

Active member
There's one thing I don't understand: Back in the day, I shot video from a few night drifting events using a GH3 and the Zuiko 75mm f/1.8. Admitedly, the 75mm has extremely fast AF, and there is unusually good contrast at night drifting events but I rarely had problems tracking the cars. Sometimes, I wonder if people have unrealistic expectations with regards to C-AF. I understand that Sony and Fuji are better, and I know that Olympus is better, but with a good lens, I wouldn't hesitate to use a Panasonic camera for sports if needed. Not the GX8 though. The GH3 was actually better.
I don’t know that people have unrealistic expectation of AF tracking... even many Panasonic Ambassadors have publicly commented on some of the shortcomings of video AF (but in a political way). I do believe that people get caught up in wanting the camera they own to check the most boxes but as they say (and by they I mean me) - don’t let the idea of perfection get in the way of tangible greatness.

By all accounts the last firmware update for the latest G/GH Cameras fixed many of the glaring shortcomings but it is still not better than the best systems yet.

When do cameras get developed to the level where we get video frame grabs as being good enough to replace still shots - sometimes I get the feeling that is where it is all headed.
Panasonic cameras actually already do this in 4K/6K photo mode. They operate as 30fps and 60fps on these cameras.
 

mjr

Well-known member
Well I still think good photography requires skill. Progression, be it through automation or whatever will seemingly make life easier, will always be human nature. In the example you just described we can look at it as one handed operation or we can look at it as offloading mechanical functions to a machine so that we as photographers can focus on composition.

I do agree that better or at least more technologically advanced photography tools have become much more accessible to the masses but I don’t know if that’s a bad thing in general. I guess it’s all in perspective. You seemingly happen to value the idea in that a level of passion should be required to excel, and I don’t totally disagree with you, but if we apply that across the board there would be lots of starving people if grocery stores/markets didn’t exist assuming a person was a terrible hunter/farmer for example. Someone will always invent a way to make life easier for the masses given the ability.

...and yes the M provides one of the few limited opportunities for limited automation so you’re not crazy to desire one.
You are correct, it is about perspective, I'm not saying that with a camera that does everything you don't need skill, I'm saying you need less skills. You still have to get up and go out, the camera doesn't quite do that yet, find something you like and turn the camera on of course.

I read so much about this brand or that brand, af isn't fast enough, it picks the wrong eye, won't follow this or that, at some point, I feel we have to take responsibility for our part of the process. It is entirely possible to focus wherever you want, it takes practice, with experience you can predict where someone or something will be, not always but often enough. When the camera does all that for you I feel it devalues the effort needed to be good at what you enjoy or do for a living. Just my view.

When I'm not shooting commercially, I don't even care so much about the image to be honest, it's being out, putting in the effort, getting it right based on the decisions I make. Of course there will always be those who want it easier, I'm not suggesting we go backwards, I'm just reserving my right to think it's all a bit rubbish. My GFX is an amazing work tool, I have made lots of money with it, but it leaves me wanting more. An evf is necessary part of owning the camera but I know what it takes to expose an image, the things others find great about it are lost on me, learn about exposure and feel better about the effort when you get it right. Again, my grumpy view.

As for a level of passion required to excel, that's not what I believe at all, I have passion for many things I will never excel at, excelling is not the goal for me, it's the doing. An odd analogy with the starving people and the lack of skills, it used to be that the best hunters and farmers survived to develop the human race, there are people starving and dying outside my door right now, it could reasonably be said it's not because they can't hunt or farm, it's because they are ravaged by war, greed and technologically advanced bombs have wiped their houses off the face of the earth. I don't know, I'm not an expert.

Mat
 

iiiNelson

Active member
You are correct, it is about perspective, I'm not saying that with a camera that does everything you don't need skill, I'm saying you need less skills. You still have to get up and go out, the camera doesn't quite do that yet, find something you like and turn the camera on of course.

I read so much about this brand or that brand, af isn't fast enough, it picks the wrong eye, won't follow this or that, at some point, I feel we have to take responsibility for our part of the process. It is entirely possible to focus wherever you want, it takes practice, with experience you can predict where someone or something will be, not always but often enough. When the camera does all that for you I feel it devalues the effort needed to be good at what you enjoy or do for a living. Just my view.

When I'm not shooting commercially, I don't even care so much about the image to be honest, it's being out, putting in the effort, getting it right based on the decisions I make. Of course there will always be those who want it easier, I'm not suggesting we go backwards, I'm just reserving my right to think it's all a bit rubbish. My GFX is an amazing work tool, I have made lots of money with it, but it leaves me wanting more. An evf is necessary part of owning the camera but I know what it takes to expose an image, the things others find great about it are lost on me, learn about exposure and feel better about the effort when you get it right. Again, my grumpy view.

As for a level of passion required to excel, that's not what I believe at all, I have passion for many things I will never excel at, excelling is not the goal for me, it's the doing. An odd analogy with the starving people and the lack of skills, it used to be that the best hunters and farmers survived to develop the human race, there are people starving and dying outside my door right now, it could reasonably be said it's not because they can't hunt or farm, it's because they are ravaged by war, greed and technologically advanced bombs have wiped their houses off the face of the earth. I don't know, I'm not an expert.

Mat
Fair enough and I don’t completely disagree with you in regards to photography being more accessible. The fact of the matter is that it is.

Regarding starvation - yes my analogy was completely simplistic and through a “first world” viewpoint... but it was just an analogy. It’s unfortunate that anyone has to starve with human advancements, wealth, and resources but that’s probably another unfortunate non-photographic discussion to begin with.
 

iiiNelson

Active member
Regarding the CDAF based autofocus of these cameras, here’s a good comparison with the Z6.

https://youtu.be/8bX9kFaJhjA

There are a few things of note for me:

A) The Panasonic generally isn’t as good at tracking in comparison (no real surprise there) but when it does lock on then it’s accurate.

B) Panasonic (and hybrid system) lens design in general is seemingly an overlooked element. The Panasonic focus transitions are clearly much smoother and “more cinematic” (in that they look more like a manual focus pull specifically they are less abrupt/jerky when compared to the Nikon). Perhaps Nikon designed their lenses with stepping motors instead of linear ones and this provides that instant focus grab effect.

C) As a photographer/videographer you constantly have to come up with workarounds. It seems stopping the lens down a bit (2 stops) minimizes the negatives of slower AF Tracking which allows the Panasonic to sufficiently “keep up” with the subject due to increased DoF.

So Jorgen perhaps this is why you didn’t have as hard of a time with AF-C Tracking on your GH3... there is just a lot more in focus and the minimal adjustments needed to shift the plane of focus typically didn’t affect your workflow. As we can see, people get themselves into trouble when they want extremely shallow DoF and autofocus (though in fairness Canon and Sony have little to no issue being able to do this).

That’s really the main point and it’s up to the user to make the gear work for them... or change to something that can. As we can see, the LUMIX S works in either setting but maybe the end user is better off with keeping the aperture to f/2 or narrower in video when the camera is unmanned.
 

Bernard

Member
The Panasonic focus transitions are clearly much smoother and “more cinematic” (in that they look more like a manual focus pull specifically they are less abrupt/jerky when compared to the Nikon).
There's a huge difference between AF for stills and AF for video. It looks like Panasonic optimized more for video, and Nikon for stills. That makes sense, Panasonic makes high-end video and cine cameras. Nikon, of course, is known for stills.

It would be more interesting to compare Panasonic's video AF with Canon's (which is by far the best in the business).
 

iiiNelson

Active member
There's a huge difference between AF for stills and AF for video. It looks like Panasonic optimized more for video, and Nikon for stills. That makes sense, Panasonic makes high-end video and cine cameras. Nikon, of course, is known for stills.

It would be more interesting to compare Panasonic's video AF with Canon's (which is by far the best in the business).
Well there are comparisons to the Nikon and Canon EOS R, Fuji XT3, and Sony A7 already on the net.

The point wasn’t to “bash Nikon” but to point out an area not as heavily discussed in video performance where the Panasonic may shine for some shooters. There are videos showing the AF stills performance (with preproduction units) of the S1/R... in short it performs better in stills than video. This was never a concern though because the G9 performs well in stills in most cases. It’s mainly continuous tracking (primarily video) that’s of concern for most.
 

Jorgen Udvang

Subscriber Member
That's the kind of review that makes me want to buy the camera, not least the comment about the 50mm. Most photographers would probably do fine with the 3 lenses that were launched with the camera and nothing more. Me? I would need a longer lens too, but that's what m4/3 is for isn't it?

I also liked the positive comments about video from the S1R. That means that for "normal" video needs, the S1R is good enough and the camera to buy for stills photographers who do a little video on the side.
 

iiiNelson

Active member
That's the kind of review that makes me want to buy the camera, not least the comment about the 50mm. Most photographers would probably do fine with the 3 lenses that were launched with the camera and nothing more. Me? I would need a longer lens too, but that's what m4/3 is for isn't it?

I also liked the positive comments about video from the S1R. That means that for "normal" video needs, the S1R is good enough and the camera to buy for stills photographers who do a little video on the side.
Yeah but if we are being honest most video in most hybrid cameras the last 3-5 years are good enough for normal usage. I think some people want/expect pro cinema camera and pro video performance at hobbyist prices.

Truth be told they’d probably be better off with a dedicated video camera than trying to make a compromises solution work where a dedicated tool reduces the number of compromises.

I agree that that I could probably do most things with the launch lenses and probably wouldn’t need anything else besides maybe a dedicated fast portrait lens.
 

Jorgen Udvang

Subscriber Member
C) As a photographer/videographer you constantly have to come up with workarounds. It seems stopping the lens down a bit (2 stops) minimizes the negatives of slower AF Tracking which allows the Panasonic to sufficiently “keep up” with the subject due to increased DoF.
Funny that you mention this. When I shot motorsports with a first generation Nikkor 300mm f/4 AF, I always stopped down to f/8 or f/11 if I had vehicles coming straight towards me. It became so much of a reflex that I didn't even look at the aperture number, just spun the wheel the approximate distance to give me enough DOF to compensate for the slow AF :D

That's called RI (real intelligence). No need for AI :ROTFL:
 

iiiNelson

Active member
Yeah I would prefer something in the 100-110 range personally but we will see what Panasonic announces. I fear it’ll be an 85/1.4. While I don’t mind them, I find that 100mm seems to be the sweet spot for headshots for me.

I also don’t want to pay Leica prices for their lenses...law of diminishing returns and all. Great lenses... just am not trying to pay $4K+ for them when there are great options for much less.

On a side note though... a fast FF version of their 20/1.7 lense so let’s say a 40/1.4 (or 45mm) or 40/1.8 (or 45mm here too) would’ve been a great option.
 

PeterA

Active member
How many lenses do people on here think are required to cover 80% of use - and how many for the next 20%?:)
 

Jorgen Udvang

Subscriber Member
How many lenses do people on here think are required to cover 80% of use - and how many for the next 20%?:)
For me, 3-4. With the new Panasonic cameras, the 24-105 mm being close focusing (30 cm), mostly eliminating the need for a macro lens, I could do more than 80% with the 3 existing lenses. For portraits, I would use a mix of the 50 mm and the 70-200 mm. A fourth lens, a long tele, could be on a m4/3 or APS-C body, like the 100-300 mm that I use with Panasonic's GX8 now.

Please don't ask how many lenses I currently own and how many I want to buy :ROTFL:
 

PeterA

Active member
For me, 3-4. With the new Panasonic cameras, the 24-105 mm being close focusing (30 cm), mostly eliminating the need for a macro lens, I could do more than 80% with the 3 existing lenses. For portraits, I would use a mix of the 50 mm and the 70-200 mm. A fourth lens, a long tele, could be on a m4/3 or APS-C body, like the 100-300 mm that I use with Panasonic's GX8 now.

Please don't ask how many lenses I currently own and how many I want to buy :ROTFL:
Dont worry - I know exactly wht you are saying.:ROTFL::ROTFL:

The GFX50S I have 23 + 32-63 + 110/2 - I would like to have a 45/2.8 but I dont 'need it' as the zoom covers that range and does it very well...tbh even the 23 which is a fantastic lens isn't used as much as I woudl like - because it really is a special purpose lens at 18mm (effective in 35mm terms).

Now I get why Leica started with superb zoom in SL and then brought out the 50 lux as its first prime.

i thin 50MP is a game changer for me anyway - because the FujiGFX handles like an SLR - the GF100 coming out will even have IBIS...

I think the crop capability means fewer lenses need to be bought - same as in Panasonic 47MP camera.

I'm looking at a redundant Leica M system now - which means I have already paid for the GFX100 and SL2 +
\For the first time in 20years I think I can safely exit the Leica M system - which is quite a substantial investment in lenses.

Less is more might actually become a reality.
 

Jorgen Udvang

Subscriber Member
Now I get why Leica started with superb zoom in SL and then brought out the 50 lux as its first prime.
With the high pixel count in current digital cameras, and I'm of the opinion that 24 MP is already a high count, 50 mm lenses are really under-valued as portrait lenses. A 50 mm has the great advantage of being a good lens for most kinds of portraits, including environmental ones, while with 85 mm and longer, one tends to "hit the wall" quite literally if more than the subject's face is needed in the picture.

So from my point of view, both Leica and Panasonic did the right thing by starting off with large aperture 50 mm lenses. I wouldn't mind having the S1R with that lens only for starters.
 

ptomsu

Workshop Member
After these reviews the S1/S1R get more and more intense resting for me, I must say I tend to prefer the S1R as I want a FF high res alternative to my m43 gear.

So the S1R with the kit zoom and the 1.4/50 either Panasonic or Leica, and the Leics 2/75 0r 2/90 as portrait lenses would solve a lot of problems. For this I might also let go lot of my M-glass to support financing this.

And then add a long tele zoom - I guess Sigma will bring what I want/need there.

In the end it again looks like I will stop investing in m43 gear, as I have there all I already want!
 

Jorgen Udvang

Subscriber Member
After these reviews the S1/S1R get more and more intense resting for me, I must say I tend to prefer the S1R as I want a FF high res alternative to my m43 gear.

So the S1R with the kit zoom and the 1.4/50 either Panasonic or Leica, and the Leics 2/75 0r 2/90 as portrait lenses would solve a lot of problems. For this I might also let go lot of my M-glass to support financing this.

And then add a long tele zoom - I guess Sigma will bring what I want/need there.

In the end it again looks like I will stop investing in m43 gear, as I have there all I already want!
Should I buy any of these cameras, I will keep my m4/3 gear, and carry a GX8 for telephoto and other specialised photography. Back when I bought the D810, I did the mistake of selling most of my m4/3 equipment, and that was not smart. Sometimes, small is better.

However, this would mean not investing in any of the expensive lenses for m4/3.
 
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