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Old 12-19-2016, 09:31 PM   #1
Modern Day Myth Prod. LLC
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Question Drones with Cameras

For someone who wants to learn how to fly and shoot with a drone and maybe comes up with some useful aereo footage, is this a good first one?

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...uadcopter.html
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Old 12-19-2016, 11:52 PM   #2
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No.

While it's more pricey, I wouldn't go anything below

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...uadcopter.html
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Old 12-20-2016, 01:07 PM   #3
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Why 4K when the rest of my setup is 1080p?

I want all the footage to match to edit together.

I have tried to merge mixed digital video formats before with disastrous results as the editing software goes crazy to render a format with the properties of both.

Also, are permits or licenses needed to film with drones?

Last edited by Modern Day Myth Prod. LLC; 12-20-2016 at 01:17 PM.
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Old 12-20-2016, 01:14 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Modern Day Myth Prod. LLC View Post
For someone who wants to learn how to fly and shoot with a drone and maybe comes up with some useful aereo footage, is this a good first one?
It's a great first one to learn with.
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Old 12-20-2016, 02:30 PM   #5
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Thank you, directorik.
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Old 12-20-2016, 04:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Modern Day Myth Prod. LLC View Post
Why 4K when the rest of my setup is 1080p?

I want all the footage to match to edit together.

I have tried to merge mixed digital video formats before with disastrous results as the editing software goes crazy to render a format with the properties of both.
That doesn't have to be a problem: that depends on software and hardware.

For drones it is convenient to have a higher resolution: you might need to stabalize the footage. 4K in an HD timeline gives you that space.

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Also, are permits or licenses needed to film with drones?
Yes.
Look it up!
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Old 12-20-2016, 09:16 PM   #7
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I have tried to merge mixed digital video formats before with disastrous results as the editing software goes crazy to render a format with the properties of both.
You (or your post team) will need to learn to match different footage regardless of which drone you'll buy.

As Walter mentioned, 4k will give you benefits that you won't quite understand right now, but you will when you get to post and need to do any reframing.

This part has nothing to do with 4k. The technology improvements used in the new drones are big improvements over their older cousins, including a lot of safety upgrades. The old drones vs the new drones are like horse and buggy vs modern cars. Would you practice on a horse and buggy?

It's still your choice.

Quote:
Also, are permits or licenses needed to film with drones?
This depends on your local laws. Where I am, you can fly a drone (within certain limitations) without a permit or license. A license here allows you to fly a larger drone and has some of the limitations imposed on unlicensed operators lifted/lowered.

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I have tried to merge mixed digital video formats before with disastrous results as the editing software goes crazy to render a format with the properties of both.
A good workflow and testing that workflow in post production eliminates these issues when it comes to execute your films plan. Out of interest, what software were you using?
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Old 12-20-2016, 11:10 PM   #8
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I am planning to edit with my newer computer with Adobe Premiere and Sony Vegas Movie Studio Suite 13. The Sony Vegas Movie Studio Suite is an upgrade from version 12. 13 comes with 4K support and users posting reviews and comments are in love with its compatibility to GoPro cameras. With built in Boris FX and FXHOME HitFilm plugins, New Blue FX, Sound Forge and 3D Text effects and color correction Red Giant, and IZtope it's an excellent deal for bang for the buck.

It's got more than the latest version of Vegas Pro. However, I am sticking with 1080p hardware. It's more in my budget.

I was comparing 4K to 1080p TVs in a Best Buy electronics store and I cannot see a difference in the picture quality. It like trying to compare 24 bit color to 32 bit color.

And, as originally stated, I am looking to get something to learn the craft of controlling the flight of a drone and filming with its camera before I invest into something bigger and better later.

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Old 12-21-2016, 02:47 AM   #9
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I was comparing 4K to 1080p TVs in a Best Buy electronics store
Do you know for sure it was a real test? Most of those places don't know the difference from the front end of a monitor from the back.

It's like saying lawyer A is better than lawyer B based on my opinion that lawyer A managed to get a jaywalking charge dismissed when I was in another country, but lawyer B failed to get my D Trump hunting license approved.

Quote:
It like trying to compare 24 bit color to 32 bit color.
It's 24/30/36.... 24 = 3 colors at 8bit each. 30 = 3 colors at 10bit each. From what I've read, most people can tell up to 12 bits per color with a further approximately 5% of the population need 13 bits. You can tell, you just don't know you can tell..... but we've strayed off topic there a bit.

Anyway, the point is the quality of your picture will come from the data within the image, not the resolution. Whether a picture is 1080p or 4k has little do to with image quality.

Quote:
I am sticking with 1080p hardware. It's more in my budget.
For editing: While you're probably not going to believe me, your hardware has less to do with what you can edit than your workflow. Early this month I finished working on a film that was shot with 4k h264 using an i5 so old, it was picked up at one of those recycle centers for $10 (some extra ram to bring it up to 12gig and an old video card was put in it). With an appropriate workflow, it cut through the project like butter.

With that story in mind, I'm not sure what you mean by sticking with 1080p hardware.

The more of a clue you get, the less of a fat wallet you need.
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Old 12-21-2016, 09:45 AM   #10
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The reason for the interest in a drone with a camera is for footage for POV shots of spaceships flying over terrain looking for landing sites as well as reconnaissance missions. My last two productions have spaceships in them. I am looking for new and exciting shots that can add to the story of the films in the future.
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Old 12-21-2016, 09:55 AM   #11
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And, this calls to mind what my last two DoP recommended, blur out the footage to make it look like it's in the distance. 1080p will do just fine for that. No need for 4K.
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Old 12-21-2016, 11:29 AM   #12
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Blurring doesn't make it look distant. It makes it look blurry or miniature.
4K vs 1080p has nothing to do with looking more distant or the need to blur.

Almost ALL drone footage need some stabalizing, because wind of vibrantions create tiny or larger off-vector movement. To make it stable the software moves the image frame by frame in such a way the unwanted movements are gone.
BUT: without zooming into the footage you'll see black edges dance around your footage.
THUS: 4K gives you the resolution to zoom in a bit without losing resolution.

Besides that: it opens the possibility for HUD POVs where you 'punch in' the zoom in post, giving you the opportunity to give the footage a more SF look and feel.

(BTW: Welcome back! It has been a while )
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Old 12-21-2016, 12:31 PM   #13
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I second that; good to see you back.

Knowing a little about your end product and your struggles getting
a movie made my advice is to get that Hubsan. Both Walter and
Sweetie are technically correct but sometimes the less expensive
option is the better way to go for specific situations. I believe you
will get what you need for your movie and learn a new skill in the
process.

If you crash that thing you are out less money than if you crash
that $1,800 one. You DID say this is for someone who wants to
learn how to fly and shoot with a drone.
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Old 12-21-2016, 12:40 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by directorik View Post
I second that; good to see you back.

Knowing a little about your end product and your struggles getting
a movie made my advice is to get that Hubsan. Both Walter and
Sweetie are technically correct but sometimes the less expensive
option is the better way to go for specific situations. I believe you
will get what you need for your movie and learn a new skill in the
process.

If you crash that thing you are out less money than if you crash
that $1,800 one. You DID say this is for someone who wants to
learn how to fly and shoot with a drone.
This is also very sound advice.
My technical advice was not to pursuade you to spend a lot more, but to make sure you make your decision on a more informed base. Learning to fly is not without risk.
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Old 12-21-2016, 03:20 PM   #15
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I tend to take questions much more literal. Mike asked if that $300
drone camera is good for learning how to fly and shoot. You and
Sweetie always answer what you believe is the implied question. It's
what makes indietalk a great place - options. That $1,800 drone
camera seems like a really expensive machine to learn with. Sweetie
wouldn't go for anything below that one - I would learn with the $300
one. Good options to consider.

Another alternative that I suspect all three of us would agree on is, if
the budget is in the $2,000 range, a director should hire an experienced
owner/operator for a day to get all the needed shots rather than buy
and learn with that money.
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