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ISO and Shutter Speed Settings

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by williamjamesfpv, Sep 19, 2015.

  1. williamjamesfpv

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    Hi Everyone - I flew around sunset on a cloudy day and when I got home, I realized that my flight footage was not very clear due to picking sub-optimal video settings. I set AWB to "cloudy", recorded at 2.5k 30fps, increased ISO to 800, and my shutter speed was set to around 640 or 800 as well (I think). Usually I fly during the day with ISO 100 (don't remember my shutter speed settings). With ISO 800 in low light and the 640 (or 800) shutter speed, I found my video to have a lot of noise. I do have some questions about ISO and Shutter:

    (1) How do you determine what is the best ISO and Shutter combination for each given flight? (for example, sunny versus sunset video settings may differ)

    (2) I have heard that shutter speed should be set to twice the frame rate. So @ 2.5k 30fps, is it true that my shutter speed should be 60? If yes, do I keep it at 60 regardless of what time of day I'm flying, whether it's sunny, dark, cloudy, etc....?

    Thanks in advance.
    William
     
  2. 4wd

    4wd

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    Shutter speed is not as important as some say, unless you are recording at optimum everything for broadcast quality.
    If not sure just leave it on auto, often as not it's best anyway and you won't get stepped exposure from your manual adjustments while recording.
    You might have found it best with the compensation on -1.0 or even lower so it didn't try to make a daytime bright scene rather than lower light sunset - which would likely lose a lot of colour in the sky.

    It would probably have been OK left on ISO 100 and slow the shutter even below 1/50 unless you were moving about rapidly (unlikely recording a sunset).
     
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  3. hit-n-run

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    There are some awesome videos that a member here has made regarding video settings, you should check them out.
    Yes, if you are shooting at 30 fps, you want to keep your shutter speed as close to 2X the frame rate as possible. Without a variable aperture, you will have to rely on ND filters to slow the shutter speed.
    A shutter speed of 640 or 800 is super fast and is going to result in an unnatural looking video.
     
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  4. jack1144

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    Biggest problem is the ISO, try to stay at 100
    In your example of ISO 800 and shutter 1/800 th
    An equal exposure would be ISO 100 and 1/100th shutter and better image
    A ND2 added would get the shutter to 1/50th
     
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  5. Viral

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    Yup. Remember that ISO is how sensitive your sensor is to light. The higher the ISO the more noise you'll have in your video/photos. I would work VERY hard to never have my p3 ISO go above 400. The only reason you should ever raise it above 100 is if it drops your shutter speed so low that there's an unacceptable amount of motion blur (below 1/30, you'd have to be taking shots of a very calm scene.)
     
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  6. williamjamesfpv

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    @4wd , Thank you for your reply. I'm sorry if I worded my explanation incorrectly. I was filming during sunset, not the actual sunset itself. I highlight this point because the P3 was moving at about 14 m/s while I was recording. With that speed, do you still suggest that I keep my shutter speed at 60? If yes, should I be playing around with my ISO a little bit more? I find that finding the right balance of ISO and shutter during daylight is not as hard as it is for cloudy and/or evening conditions.

    Furthermore, you suggested keeping things on auto. I tried playing around with this at home in various lighting conditions and I noticed my ISO would shift drastically from 800 all the way to 6400. If this happens during flight, won't that introduce a lot of noise into my video?

    Thanks again for your help.
    WJ
     
  7. williamjamesfpv

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    @hit-n-run , Thakn you for your reply. You are correct regarding the ND filters. I'm reading up on them now to find out which one to use and when. For example, when to use ND8 vs when to use ND16. With that said, can you please elaborate on why (or how) a ND filter helps keep the shutter speed to as close to the 2X frame rate as possible? Here's where I'm confused. If I'm in a low light situation where I'm recording at 30fps, and a shutter speed of 60 is not yielding enough light, and have to move to a shutter of 50 (for example). In this case, wouldn't the ND filter offset my change in shutter (going from 60 to 50)? In other words, wouldn't it do the opposite of what I'm trying to achieve here? My apologies in advance if my understanding is inaccurate, hence the request for elaboration :)

    Cheers,
    WJ
     
  8. williamjamesfpv

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    @jack1144 - Thank you for your reply. If I may ask, how were you able to so fluently determine the equivalent exposure amount? I'm new to all of this so I apologize if this is obvious to everyone else.
     
  9. williamjamesfpv

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    @Viral - Thank you for your reply. Your advice is a good one. For the particular evening I was recording, my ISO of 100 would translate to a black screen on my monitor, so it kinda forced me to move my ISO up. In hindsight, I think 800 was too much. I should have maxed out at ISO 400 and moved my shutter to 60 (as my fps was set to 30). With that said, let's say I did move to ISO 400 and shutter rate was set to 60, and my screen was still too dark. At that point, should I move to ISO 800 or move to shutter 50? Is it ever okay to have your shutter at less than 2X? For example, 30 fps and shutter at 50 or 40?
     
  10. williamjamesfpv

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    On the same topic, I do have the following two questions:

    (1) What are the pros/cons of having ISO and shutter controlled automatically versus doing it manually?

    (2) What does the "EV" stand for in camera settings and what does it do? Read the detailed phantom 3 manual and couldn't find the section relating to this.
     
  11. RedHotPoker

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    dlbyers, BigAl07, Ed209 and 2 others like this.
  12. williamjamesfpv

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  13. RedHotPoker

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    You are very welcome. I hope that by sharing the info, more wonderful and awe inspiring photos and videos can be made, for all to enjoy. The best way to understand your new camera's ability is to practice, & to try various different techniques, settings, trial & error. Eh, that's the secret, just do it and soon, you too will become proficient, as in no time...
    'Above' everything else, fly safe, and have fun.

    RedHotPoker
     
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  14. Viral

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    My best advice would be to remember that a phantom is more of a flying tripod than an rc airplane. I would suggest reading up on the exposure triangle and how it affects photography. You've spent as much on your phantom as photographers do on a decent dSLR camera. Understanding the basics of exposure will make using it much more enjoyable.

    To answer a few of your direct questions, yes you can go below 2x frame rate. But going too far below will introduce blur. Too much blur is totally up to you and what look you're going for. If you were trying to capture car tail lights smeared across a dark road, you would WANT motion blur. If you have to raise your ISO to get proper exposure, by all means do so, just understand the more you h e to raise it, the noisier your footage will be.

    The exposure triangle will help you understand how these guys are being 'fluent' in matching various ISO and shutter speeds to get the same exposure. It will also help you understand how ND filters can help ( they are basically sunglasses for your camera)
     
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  15. jack1144

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    Thanks William.Seems like others have given you alot of great reading and info. It 'll all come together.
    In case you haven't found the answer to your question of adjusting exposure,
    ISO is the sensitivity to light, a change of doubling or halving is considered 1 "stop " higher number is more sensitive to light
    Shutter speed is how long of time light is let in for each frame again doubling or halving = 1 stop
    Nd filters reduce the amount , ND2 cuts light 1 stop,ND4 2 stops, ND8 3 stops ND16 4 stops
    So changing ISO 800 by half=ISO400, 1 stop.... ISO 400 by half=ISO200 1 more stop ISO 200 by half=ISO100 ( our target) 1 more stop again.Total 3 stops down
    So change shutter from 1/800 by double =1/400 1stop by double =1/200 1 more stop, by double 1/100 again 1 stop. Total 3 stops up. Remember ISO number down= less light in , Shutter longer time= more light in.
    Hope this helps
     
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  16. RedHotPoker

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  17. BigAl07

    BigAl07 Moderator
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    Great information and links above! ! !
     
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  18. Garrie

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    Always use the histogram to check your exposure. Do not depend on what you see on your screen. In classical photography theory, an average "proper" exposure would mean that the "mountain" graph in the histogram is in the middle, with no clipping to the highlights or shadows at either end.

    However, it's always good to push the "mountain" slightly to the right. Try your best to use ISO 100 as much as possible. If it's still not correctly exposed, lower your shutter speed until it is correct. Your EV should read 0 for a "correct" exposure.
     
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  19. williamjamesfpv

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    @RedHotPoker - I've been tinkering around with the settings and your advice to practice really did come in handy. MUCH better understanding of what's going on now! Just thought I should give you an update, and once again thank you for the great advice :)
     
  20. williamjamesfpv

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    @Viral - Thank you so much. I have now read up further on the exposure triangle and have a much better understand. Thank you for this helpful advice. The only question that remains for me is how do I know which ND filter to use? ND filters have different numbers of them (which I don't really know what they mean)... but how would you go about picking the best ND for the given scenario? - Liked :)

    Cheers :)

    Edit: Please ignore my question in this post... I was replying to everyone in order of sequence and learned that @jack1144 generously explained this to me in his post. Thanks again :)
     
    #20 williamjamesfpv, Sep 23, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2015