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Normal vs D-Log

I get what you're saying, but raw video is the equivalent of raw stills and D-Log (or just LOG footage in general) is basically just a flat color profile (and not necessarily 10-bit, although newer DJI cameras pretty much all do LOG as 10-bit only). I don't say this to be pedantic. For video, it's really important to understand the distinction.

The best example to illustrate the difference is white balance. Raw photo and video don't have baked in white balance because of where WB is applied in the processing pipeline (raw is basically just data straight from the sensor with no processing), so adjusting WB in post has no effect on the image/video. But DLOG video *does* have WB balance baked in, so making big changes to it in post can degrade your image quality. So even if you shoot LOG, it's REEEEALLLY important to set your WB correctly before you record (although even with raw you should try and set it correctly from the start).
thanks very much for helping me understand the distinction!
 
ok....so I decided to play around with D-Log. Some of my options are limited because I don't want to pay for some of the expensive editors like Adobe or Resolve Studio. I especially don't want an annual charge

one thing I do to almost all my videos after editing is speed up the clip by X2 or X3. I have found that the app that does the best job of speeding up video with minimal artifacts is VSDC Free Video Editor. And yeah, the free part of that is appealing

anyway, I did a test flight and recorded in D-Log. VSDC does have a set of 10 LUTs you can access. They are pretty limited. But using one LUT I like and some additional adjustments and grading after applying the LUT I was getting some decent results. I did find that I have to scale back saturation quite a bit each time. I don't think I have progressed to the point that the final video is better than what I'd get from recording in normal mode. Although it did seem that the D-Log versions were much better at controlling over-exposure

I have the free version of Resolve but apparently that won't accept D-Log.

Has anybody else used VSDC? Also, I tried to add 3rd party LUTs like the Rec 709 from DJI and they didn't work. Anybody have a clue why?
 
I have the free version of Resolve but apparently that won't accept D-Log.

So the issue with Resolve is the H265 codec and not LOG footage specifically (DJI records LOG footage using the H265 codec). My understanding is you can download the HEVC/H265 codec from the Windows store for $1 and then you can edit your LOG footage (although whether your computer can handle it is a different story). Windows (and Linux, I think) doesn't support H265 natively.

Has anybody else used VSDC? Also, I tried to add 3rd party LUTs like the Rec 709 from DJI and they didn't work. Anybody have a clue why?

If it's anything like Premiere you have to basically know alchemy to install LUTs (okay not really, but it's not as simple as it should be), but it could just a limitation of the software since it's free?
 
there are times I wish I was using something more powerful than Final Cut Pro but then there are times...
 
there are times I wish I was using something more powerful than Final Cut Pro but then there are times...
Every NLE has limitations. I'm producing a project for distribution on FilmHub and they want Prores 4:2:2 delivery. Davinci Resolve for windows does not offer that option per patent conflictions. So in this case I have to render Avid then use Adobe Media Encoder to transcode to Prores. Doable although hoops.
 
I mainly shoot stills so "what they said" lol. The way I look at it the same as the difference between RAW and JPEG. They're both great but RAW gives you a lot more latitude in post. I'm using the free DJI LUT with my Mavic 3 Classic for videos. But since 68% of all internet traffic is now on mobile devices (phones) does it really matter? I suppose if you're a film maker it does, but probably not. I'm editing in CapCut, after fighting and failing with Davinci for months. I know it's 'the best' but I just never got it. Meh.
 
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I mainly shoot stills so "what they said" lol. The way I look at it the same as the difference between RAW and JPEG. They're both great but RAW gives you a lot more latitude in post. I'm using the free DJI LUT with my Mavic 3 Classic for videos. But since 68% of all internet traffic is now on mobile devices (phones) does it really matter? I suppose if you're a film maker it does, but probably not. I'm editing in CapCut, after fighting and failing with Davinci for months. I know it's 'the best' but I just never got it. Meh.
It all depends on what you want from your final product. If you're just shooting for instagram then no...not much reason to use DLog. But if you're shooting 4K to create a nice video then in many instances it's a huge help particularly if you have cloud, snow or deep shadows that you want to "save".
 
another episode of D-Log + LUTs + my ignorance + my bumbling around

I decided to have a 'normal' control video of a flight path similar to a D-Log flight...so I could compare normal to my efforts. Flights were about 3 minutes that I whittled down to about 2 minutes using AVIDemux. Easy Peasy

with VSDC, the only Luts that work are the ones they pre-loaded in the app; 10 of them. No other Lut I downloaded worked, and that includes the Mavic3.709 Lut from DJI. And only 1 of the 10 seems worthwhile, and it still takes a lot of post-Lut editing to get any video close to the quality of the camera in normal mode

so then, I decided to try CapCut and it's much better and more versatile. It does accept 3rd party Luts. And it does accept the DJI LUT. That DJI Lut is the best so far but it does mean a little post-lut editing. One thing I found is that the Filter catalog for Cap-Cut Pro can add filters post-lut that really enhance the video. It sure doesn't have the steep learning curve of Resolve

but after all this I've only been able to create a couple of DLog-->MP4 clips that had quality about equal to the normal clip. I guess there's still most of the learning curve ahead of me
 
And you'll find..eventually...that if you have a nice sunny day with few or no clouds or deep shadows that you can shoot normal with no problem and it will be all good....but, as has been mentioned, if you have bright clouds or snow or deep shadow you'll be super glad you have figured out a workflow for using DLog, otherwise you'll find that instead of a cloud you'll have a sheet of bright white floating in the sky with no shading to it at all. Same for snow. Even with DLog there are times when you have to give up shadows. It's always best to give up shadow to pure black than have blow out clouds.
 
Commenting from one who has NO practical knowledge of working in D-Log, from what I've learned so far, D-Log is also so visually flat when shooting its a bit hard to visualize if you are getting proper exposure.

I would think you might want to - just for a moment at the start of a run- look at the scene in Normal, set a decent exposure, then switch to Log & tweak from there. I know there is a "Visual Assist" to show you a more natural scene on screen, but not sure how close that translates to the actual footage.
People here that do work in D-Log a lot should correct me if wrong....

Also - its my understanding- that once in D-Log you should skew your exposure more to the right of the histogram than you would in Normal mode. Just keep from blowing out the highlights. You'll have much more Latitude to open the shadows up than you do to recover Highlights.
I've always thought of video like shooting Transparancies (remember film?)
 
Also - its my understanding- that once in D-Log you should skew your exposure more to the right of the histogram than you would in Normal mode. Just keep from blowing out the highlights. You'll have much more Latitude to open the shadows up than you do to recover Highlights.
I've always thought of video like shooting Transparancies (remember film?)

There's never one right answer, but with LOG footage (on any camera, not just DJI) you generally want to err on the side of overexposure (what I would call "exposing to the right of the histogram" which seems to be the reverse of how you have it?) because bringing up shadows introduces a lot of noise very quickly and you'll get a better overall image recovering highlights than if you try to recover shadows. I do wish DJI allowed you to apply a preview LUT to the screen on the remote. As you say, trying to judge exposure on LOG footage with a histogram (which is terrible for video exposure already) is just not ideal. If DJI would go back to HDMI on all their controllers you could attach something like an Atomos recorder and maybe get a much more accurate preview (including false color and/or waveforms).
 
There's never one right answer, but with LOG footage (on any camera, not just DJI) you generally want to err on the side of overexposure (what I would call "exposing to the right of the histogram" which seems to be the reverse of how you have it?) because bringing up shadows introduces a lot of noise very quickly and you'll get a better overall image recovering highlights than if you try to recover shadows. I do wish DJI allowed you to apply a preview LUT to the screen on the remote. As you say, trying to judge exposure on LOG footage with a histogram (which is terrible for video exposure already) is just not ideal. If DJI would go back to HDMI on all their controllers you could attach something like an Atomos recorder and maybe get a much more accurate preview (including false color and/or waveforms).
No, we are saying the same thing. I said “exposing to the right” is what you want to do. Just taking care not to blow out the highlights. You want to bring it up as much as you can- without going pure white on anything important. Even in D-Log if your whites are gone-there’s nothing to recover.
 
Ogre:
Sorry to say, despite being a physician and an ophthalmologist, spending a lifetime treating eye diseases, the science of color is an entire subspecialty all to its own. All of your probably great suggestions about lumenitry scopes, black points, etc. have gone completely over my head!

Here is my main problem! My trip to Kyrgystan will be 90% landscapes in high mountain country. Thus, most every single video will be associated with high dynamic range, with bright, snowy mountains, overpowering the sensor and under exposing the foregrounds. In Photoshop and Lightroom, working on a RAW file with the MASKING tool and the linear gradient tool, I can compensate for the high dynamic range of bright skies and dark foregrounds. No such tool is available for local (non global) editing in Premiere for video, like it is available in Photoshop/Lightroom for RAW files.

So I am trying to figure out how to shoot videos of mountains glaciers, rivers, etc. Should I go with Auto? Can I get any local (sky or foreground) compensation using D-Log and DJI- LUT? Here is a typical image from the trip brochure. I did a screen grab but cut off some sky by mistake but uyou get the idea.
DaleView attachment 174877
I was going to suggest a set of Graduated ND filters. But I’m doing a search for them for the Mavic three pro. I couldn’t find any. Not sure if they’re made…
 
I've never been a fan of graduated ND filters. They require you to frame your image (like a sky which is what they are used for most often) in a particular way. With today's RAW and Dlog options (and DlogM) if you have the exposure reasonably correct you can do what a graduated ND filter is used for in 'post'. just my take on that subject.
 
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I've never been a fan of graduated ND filters. They require you to frame your image (like a sky which is what they are used for most often) in a particular way. With today's RAW and Dlog options (and DlogM) if you have the exposure reasonably correct you can do what a graduated ND filter is used for in 'post'. just my take on that subject.
Yep. realize that. Just brainstorming for Dale on possible solutions. My guess is if he does shoot in Log he should be fine
 
I'll add to this that when color grading DLog video, Adjustment layers are your best friend. If you're not familiar with them, look into them. Simple to use and very versatile.
 
No, we are saying the same thing. I said “exposing to the right” is what you want to do. Just taking care not to blow out the highlights. You want to bring it up as much as you can- without going pure white on anything important. Even in D-Log if your whites are gone-there’s nothing to recover.
Ahhhh gotcha. I see what you're saying after rereading. I got hung up on the "bringing up the shadows" part and read that as shooting to underexpose. But yes, we're on the same page!
 
I am looking forward to the day IA can set our exposure (DLog or otherwise) perfectly to expose to the right while saving our bright clouds but sacrificing bright reflections from a chrome bumper....
 
I am looking forward to the day IA can set our exposure (DLog or otherwise) perfectly to expose to the right while saving our bright clouds but sacrificing bright reflections from a chrome bumper....
I'd settle for the ability to use waveforms/false color and preview LUTs. At the very least, anything with a "Pro" label on it should have basic video exposure tools!
 
I'd settle for the ability to use waveforms/false color and preview LUTs. At the very least, anything with a "Pro" label on it should have basic video exposure tools!
I'm with ya. Marketing has little in terms of boundary's regarding terms used to extract money form people. Having said that, there's a ton of equipment out there with the absence of mentioned tools that are making people a ton of money. In that sense these devices are quite professional. I see tons of gopro footage in reality shows. I'm confident that many arial shots on these shows are also videoed using Mavic level drones. I see camcorders being used that are 4:2:0 8 bit. I would love to see a Mavic that was 4:2:2 10 bit log micro 4/3 with a waveform but I don't want to pay for it. Many film brokers will demand a minimum deliverable of Prores 4:2:2 10 bit but no restrictions on capture video fidelity.
Having babbled all that, I'm back to I'm with you. My favorite camera is a Ursa Mini Pro with raw, false colors, and 15 stops of dynamic range. I can get some work done with that bad boy.
 
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