I had the opportunity to test a new camera while on a short trip to Bali, Indonesia. Filmed over about two days of camera testing, this video is far from doing the incredible island any justice of it’s beauty, just a mere glimpse into what I seen over the days I took my camera out with me.
Music Credit by the homies: KOAN Sound & Asa – Starlite
Camera: Sony a7s
Lenses: Mainly the Tamron 24 – 70 2.8 VC (I had the option to shoot on other glass but really wanted to stick to testing this camera and lens combo for future run and gun situations that my work relies on heavily)
ND Filters: Hoya ProND 500 (9 stops) and a L.C.W Fader ND MKII (used this a lot and had not problems)
Steadycam: XCam Sabre black (incredible to travel with, fits in my Think Tank sling backpack while camera is still mounted along with a number of other things, lenses/batteries.
Black Level: -2
Gamma (S-log 2)
Black Gamma > Range: Middle / Level -2
Knee > Mode: Manual / Manual Set> Point: 95% / Slope: +5
Color Mode: Pro
Color Phase 0
Color Depth: R: 0 / G: 0 / B: 0 / C: 0 / M: -3 / Y: 0
Program: Adobe Premiere CC
Coloring effect stacks were usually:
Lumetri ( a variety of Impulz luts, usually C300 LPP Tetrachrome 400_FC )
Fast Color Corrector
What I learned:
in S-Log 2 // Simply put, the 8-bit camera is really pushing itself hard to keep up with it’s reputation, with the right light and color palettes in frame, this camera is a beast, but when you try to push this camera outside of its comfort zone I think it really chokes a little. Although the noise is actually quite pleasant at times, it has it’s own unique grain that can add to an image at times. I ran some tests with PP5 in situations where dynamic range is not needed, this might be my preferred profile to use, further testing is definitely needed.
White Balance is a real key to S-Log2 IMO, do not trust auto WB, Manual is the way to go!
Over Expose! every shot I took I was about +1.7 – +2.0 over exposed in S-Log 2
100/120fps: Don’t forget to crank that shutter speed up to double your frame rate!
Battery life, I heard a lot of people complaining, I picked up two more aftermarket sony batteries from online and usually used about 3.5 during a whole day of shooting, quite heavily. the higher your ISO the more the batter is going to chew, same with frame rate.
Low Light: you really need to remember to over expose, even in low light, under exposing or equal exposing in low light (slog2) will result in ugly grain syndrome
– The #1 I have with the Sony A7s is the issue it has with saturated club lights, try filming at a party / club / wedding that has high concentrated colored lights of any kind and you are going to get some in camera burn spots. It’s the buzzkill of all buzzkills. I have yet to further experiment with ways to get around this issue.