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How to avoid noise and grain in videos

Kelvin

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Hello , please can you help im having some problem with my mavic air.. when im filming i got a lot of noise and grain in my video.. the image and the video does not have a smooth cinematic resolution. Please can you tell me how to fix this problem and also how to learn when to set the appropriate sharpness contrast and saturation depending on the weather condition for example sun set , sunrise , at night, sunny ?
 

Mossiback

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Are you using ND filters? They will slow down the shutter speed to give a smooth motion. What ISO are you shooting at?
 

Kelvin

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Are you using ND filters? They will slow down the shutter speed to give a smooth motion. What ISO are you shooting at?
Im not using any filters , but this week im buying the ND filters. Im using iso 100. But how will i know which ND filters to be used depending on the light exposure ? And where can i learn about which saturation sharpness contrast , which number to be used for example 0, -1, -2 ? Depending on the light exposure. Please advise me. Thank you
 

Mossiback

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This is a general guide, your experience may vary.
• Sunrise/set - ND 4
• Cloudy day - ND 8
• Sunny day - ND 16
• Bright sun (reflective surface like snow or sand) - ND 32 or 64

There are many discussions on camera settings and it boils down to personal preference and post processing.
 

Qoncussion

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Hello , please can you help im having some problem with my mavic air.. when im filming i got a lot of noise and grain in my video.. the image and the video does not have a smooth cinematic resolution. Please can you tell me how to fix this problem and also how to learn when to set the appropriate sharpness contrast and saturation depending on the weather condition for example sun set , sunrise , at night, sunny ?
Just to be clear ~ which video files are you using?... Those captured on your phone, or are you taking your footage directly from the SD card in the Mavic? I only ask as the video files on your phone are very low resolution versions. The good stuff is on the sd card.
 

Shawn3D

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Yeah it’s the +1 sharpness parameter, however it’s better to have +1 than 0 which will cause blurry darks and green. The +1 will add noise but It’s much better to have that picture info and then reverse engineer it to a softer cleaner look. You can denoising in edit with software. Here’s a tutorial however it does involve getting other software which is well worth it for future use...
 

Scarnag

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The OP said he has an Air and if I understand what I have read correctly does not suffer from the noise/soft sharpness issue with the +1 or 0 sharpness parameter. From my experience with my air if you are getting a lot of noise you have either underexposed the image and are trying to fix it in post or you had to bump the ISO to get a usable shutter speed.

If you are shooting at ISO 100 with proper exposure and get a lot of noise there is a problem. Obviously the small sensors in the Mavic series are not as smooth as the 1" Phantom or cameras with full frame or larger sensors but noise at low ISO and proper exposure should not generally be an issue for the intended purpose of the cameras/drones.
 

Mario_bon

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I have the same problem here. I have done few tests but I'm not happy with the quality.
Would you be able to look at my video test: Park - MAvic air test.mp4

setting: Iso 100
ND/PL 8
4k - 24fps - 1/50
0.0.0
Colour Normal

I feel it is very grain especially in the shadows. Is that normal or is there something wrong?
Thank you in advance for your help.
 

Yamile

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Use noise reduction plugins such as bullet denoiser or redunoise to reduce the noise in your clip. A video shot in low light can cause the grains, however using a video fixer software like stellar can fix this too.

For sharpness, contrast and saturation in sequence I use +1,-2,-2 with D-Log. It works the best for me.
 

Thwyllo

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ND filters again...when will people understand two simple things. First, reducing the frame rate does not make the video smoother. 25 or 30 FPS is not smoother than 60fps unless whatever you play it on can't handle it.

Secondly, that bit of dark grey glass reduces the light reaching the camera, so the ISO, which increases graininess the higher it goes, has to be increased a lot.

100 ISO no grain. 1600 ISO grainy as hell.
 
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ohdavetta

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ND filters again...when will people understand two simple things. First, reducing the frame rate does not make the video smoother. 25 or 30 FPS is not smoother than 60fps unless whatever you play it on can't handle it.

Secondly, that bit of dark grey glass reduces the light reaching the camera, so the ISO, which increases graininess the higher it goes, has to be increased a lot.

100 ISO no grain. 1600 ISO grainy as ****.

People don’t use ND filters to alter the frame rate, they use them to achieve to correct shutter speed - and that can make video appear smoother.
 
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Thwyllo

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People don’t use ND filters to alter the frame rate, they use them to achieve to correct shutter speed - and that can make video appear smoother.

Within reason yes. But unless you're in snow or blinding desert sunlight you don't need much of a filter if any to get to a shutter speed of 1/60th which is the most you'd need for 25fps. In normal lighting conditions with ISO set at 100 and the EV dropped a but to underexpose, you won't need any grey glass.

But to be discussing ND filters in the context of grainy video, which was the point I was responding to, is bonkers because you'll not be able to film at 100 ISO with one of those hanging off the end.
 

gnirtS

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ND filters again...when will people understand two simple things. First, reducing the frame rate does not make the video smoother. 25 or 30 FPS is not smoother than 60fps unless whatever you play it on can't handle it.

Secondly, that bit of dark grey glass reduces the light reaching the camera, so the ISO, which increases graininess the higher it goes, has to be increased a lot.

100 ISO no grain. 1600 ISO grainy as ****.

..and on the mavic with its fairly awful camera, even ISO200 is fairly unacceptable with noise. Anything over base iso is going to be lower quality.

Im stunned how many people have absolutely no understanding of what an ND filter does. Its a bog standard piece of tinted glass yet people assume they have magical qualities.
Its only "drone world" that people seem to misunderstand these simple creatures.

The OP has stated the video has noise and grain. That is something an ND filter is going to have absolutely no effect on (also wont affect contrast, wont affect sharpness, wont effect highlights and all the other snake oil that gets peddled on here). In fact, if you already have image noise, decreasing light to the sensor with an ND is going to make it worse!
Then you make a situation worse by people using an ND they dont understand with a PL they also dont understand but stick it on anyway with no adjustment.

NDs are used for motion blur yes. But thats only realistically going to be noticed on a mavic if you have a LOT of motion in the scene, flying low and fast for example. For normal, high altitude, gentle shots where there isn't much movement from frame to frame an ND isnt going to be needed.
If you're taking stills they're the last thing you want bolted onto the lens.


Anyway to the OP, are you shooting in 4k? What sharpness settings do you have? On the mavic pro you need sharpness +1 or noise reduction kicks in and smears details. Its a bug thats been around from the first few months.
Contrast and sharpening best left usually at 0 (or even -1) and you can customise it in post processing. That isn't going to change for lighting conditions.
Are you using d-log, d-cinelike or another profile?

We need more detail to offer useful advice. Ideally some sample footage as well.
 

hillridge

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My amateur understanding of ND filters is exactly what the poster above me said - Their main (only?) purpose is to achieve proper exposure when using a lower shutter speed than lighting conditions would normally allow. I will also occasionally fly with my ND4 on as a cheap lens protector since it has such a low effect in normal light conditions.

Regarding the actual topic of this thread, I am trying to learn more about how to take "professional" photos and video, and noise/grain issues are something I've been frustrated with too.
what profile is best to shoot in. I had posted about a couple photos here with no response, and would be happy to listen to any advice on improving them:
Mavic Pro Excessive Image Noise

Is there a good guide out there that you recommend reading? I have a bunch of questions, but I'm sure SOMEONE has already answered them in great detail, and I'm hoping it was in a well presented format.

Thanks!
 

RebelPro

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Anyway to the OP, are you shooting in 4k? What sharpness settings do you have? On the mavic pro you need sharpness +1 or noise reduction kicks in and smears details. Its a bug thats been around from the first few months.
Contrast and sharpening best left usually at 0 (or even -1) and you can customise it in post processing. That isn't going to change for lighting conditions.
Are you using d-log, d-cinelike or another profile?

Something that bothers me a lot is the fact DJI hasn't done anything (firmware update) giving users the option to deactivate noise reduction when using a 0 Sharpness value or below. I found it the hard way after following the settings some "YouTuber" posted from his amazing looking videos and then realizing an oil paint has more detail and sharpness than the Mavic Pro with Sharpness at 0 or below. Absolutely horrible and unacceptable.

Then I found out that having it at 1+ (the sharpness) gave me a better looking image but the amount of noise was pretty ridiculous for a very sunny day. I've been reading about what some people are doing, including overexposing the image while using d-log and basically risking losing details on the brightest parts of the image so they can avoid noise. I'm going to have to give this a try and see what happens, since apparently adjusting the camera to be properly exposed (using an ND filter to keep my shutter speed double to the frame rate I'm using, and only touching the ISO to fine-tune the exposure) will give me noise all over the image. I can't even express how much this frustrates me.

And while not related to the noise topic, I've also found that this **** Mavic doesn't give a natural motion blur even when the shutter speed is at double the frame rate. I guess I'll have to dedicate a whole morning to test the camera at different settings and see what works the best.
 

kilomikebravo

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But how will i know which ND filters to be used depending on the light exposure ?


Kelvin: Mossiback's recommendations are good ones and they will keep you at or near the sweet spot of exposure. Another method is to download the PolarPro ND Filter app which gets a little closer to the correct filter (IMHO.) Very easy to use and it has almost always picked the right filter for me.
 

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