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Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2
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Author:  milapse [ Sun Oct 24, 2010 5:47 am ]
Post subject:  Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

Here's a unique concept Chris (shutterdrone) stumbled upon while testing the Dynamic Perception MX2 DollyShield. Using the focus tap line to get the body to maintain focus on an object even though it's distance from the lens is changing. We just received a prototype shutter cable to work with the Panasonic micro four thirds camera line so I tried it's focus lock feature where it will follow an object in a scene. The result was perfect focus pulls even though the subject was moving through the frame... Now I really want the 20mm/F1.7 to try more dynamic moves!



Setup:
-Panasonic GH1 with stock 14-140 (@50mm) F5.6 in AFS focus lock mode
-Stage Zero 6' Dolly system (a 4 foot would have been fine for this focal length)

MX2 Settings:
-10.0 second intervals
-Axis 1 -> Fixed SMS: on
-0.10 inches per shot
-Camera -> Exposure time : 500ms
-Camera -> Focus tap time : 1000ms
-Camera -> Exposure Delay : 1000ms

Author:  Fredrik [ Sun Oct 24, 2010 8:55 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

That's just awesome, could make for another revolution.
Thanks for putting in the work guys.

Btw, isn't the GH1 just a super camera, great for video (hacked of course:) and now for timelapse as well, what more could one ask for?

Author:  Delrious [ Sun Oct 24, 2010 12:32 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

That's damn cool Jay. I could see where not just focus pulls could come in handy, but those quick focus switches...sure makes the GH2 more appealing.

Ben

Author:  milapse [ Sun Oct 24, 2010 1:09 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

Delrious wrote:
I could see where not just focus pulls could come in handy, but those quick focus switches...


FYI I stumbled upon that 'twitchy look' by experimenting with placing the focus lock right on the edge of the object... It sort of bounces around catching the object and background at different moments.

What I really want to play with now is some fast m43 glass! :D I'm really curious what a wide lens would look like as you push in and the DOF narrows. I'm thinking it would start with a defined background with deep DOF then slowly bokeh melt away?

Author:  matt b [ Sun Oct 24, 2010 7:08 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

That's f@#*ing amazing.

During moves does the focus box move with the prime object in the viewfinder, or does it stay where originally positioned?

Author:  milapse [ Mon Oct 25, 2010 5:36 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

matt b wrote:
During moves does the focus box move with the prime object in the viewfinder, or does it stay where originally positioned?


Once you've got it to lock on an object it tracks the object in the frame! So what I found to work nicely is to slide to a position where the object is in the center, lock onto it, then move the cart back to the start point. This way the focus box moves with the object to the sequence start point.

Author:  astronomerroyal [ Mon Oct 25, 2010 6:48 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

Looks interesting. Well designed camera. Two Qs.

1) How reliable is it?
2) Is there a poor-man's equivalent for Canon dSLR users? For example, using AF (perhaps with AI Servo)?

Author:  shutterdrone-old1 [ Mon Oct 25, 2010 1:03 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

astronomerroyal wrote:
Looks interesting. Well designed camera. Two Qs.

1) How reliable is it?
2) Is there a poor-man's equivalent for Canon dSLR users? For example, using AF (perhaps with AI Servo)?



1) I shot 500 frames in a Pentax K7 in AFS mode, and only four were not focused. (4-second focus time, of course =) It probably varies from camera to camera, but using locked AF point, I had to make sure something was always with a nice contrasting edge at that AF point throughout the entire movement.

2) See above =)

!c

Author:  edingacic [ Mon Oct 25, 2010 3:12 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

Looks cool! Now you have to "drag your DOF" :)

Author:  milapse [ Mon Oct 25, 2010 6:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Timelapse focus pull with Panasonic + DP MX2

astronomerroyal wrote:
1) How reliable is it?
2) Is there a poor-man's equivalent for Canon dSLR users? For example, using AF (perhaps with AI Servo)?


1) I'd rate it 88% from my empirical ;) , as long as the object is not too similar to the background.
2) If you can keep your target in the focus zone you've selected it's much more dependable!

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