Yi Technology -- Yi-M1

Discussion in 'Mirrorless Cameras' started by VidThreeNorth, Aug 25, 2017.

  1. VidThreeNorth

    VidThreeNorth No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I have avoided posting "UHD" videos to YouTube this long because my limited (25 GB per month) Internet account does not allow me to waste such activity. I have noted a few times that I do not actually view videos in "UHD". Most of what I watch is less than 720p, and I watch 720p much more often than 1080p.

    This is the second "UHD" video I have posted that was made using the Yi-M1. I used three lenses, none of which was from Yi Technology. This is not because I am dissatisfied with the Yi Tech lenses -- actually I like them both, but I needed to use the Panasonic 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 zoom because it is "new". This "kit zoom" has "plastic-on-plastic" parts, just like the Yi Technology zoom lens, and many others. Such parts tend to be "sticky" and need to be "worn in". So I used that lens just so I could "wear it in".

    I used the SLR Magic 8mm F4 lens because it was the widest I have, and though I have been critical of its quality, I recognize that it can be adequate as long as editing is simple (changing exposure is ok, but cropping is out of the question).

    Finally, I used my 50mm F2.0 SMC Pentax lens because I was planning to use a focus pull. In fact, I recorded the focus pull, but the tripod was not steady enough, so in the end I cut the focus pull and just used the clip after the focus pull was done.

    "[UHD] 20190515 Toronto High Park Cherry Blossoms"



     
  2. VidThreeNorth

    VidThreeNorth No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    About the "2019 Toronto, High Park, Cherry Blossoms" Video:

    The camera work was rushed for a few reasons. First, I only allocated three days to record, edit and upload this project. Also, for the recordings, I knew that I had to work quickly to avoid the crowds of visitors to the park. And then there was the weather. The cloud cover on the first day turned out perfectly while I was recording, but it cleared by the time I ran down the battery on the Yi-M1, leaving harsh contrast and deep black shadows. Two days later when I returned, it was similar.


    Part 1 (file 042)

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    This "establish" clip is unusual both in composition and in the fact that I actually do not know very much about it. First, I do not know the focal length, nor the aperture, nor the exposure time. I picked the location moving the tripod and camera around trying to get the crest of the hill in the picture, and the foreground trees, all forming a window-like appearance. Then the focal length was adjust to crop the scene, and I did not record it. The aperture and shutter speed were automatic. I can guess that the ISO was 200, because that is where it stays for typical daylight exposure.

    I also do not know where it is focussed. In a situation like this, I have found that the Yi-M1 usually focuses on the background, but on occasion, it picks something near and throws the background out of focus. When I setup the composition and looked at the focus, it looked sharp all through on the screen, and I accepted it without manually picking a focus spot. I thought that I would be able to find the focus later, but I have not been able to do so.

    I think that it might have picked the crest of the hill in the foreground. The bark on the tree to the far right in the detail crop looks particularly good. Looking at the branches in that tree, some of them also look very good. The aperture must have been on the small end because even the cherry blossom clusters in the background seem to have some distinct shaping, yet there is noticeable softening past the foreground trees. Part of the "softness" is caused by the Y'CbCr 4:2:0 chroma sub-sampling and is used in typical video, and that disguises the focus too.

    Was there something about this Panasonic lens that added to the preference to focus in the foreground? I do not think so, but I cannot say for certain.

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    Part 2
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    The recording situation for this clip was similar to the first, though I adjusted the tripod location based on the start and end of the pan. Unfortunately, I did not have a good tripod for this project, so it did not turn out as smooth as I would have liked. I wanted to have as many cherry trees as i could get in the composition at the end of the pan.

    Again, I do not know the focal length, aperture, shutter speed, nor the ISO. I made the adjustments and then did not take the time to note them. I think that when this frame was taken, the camera was probably focussed on the main cherry tree that fills a large part of the right side of the image. If you check the detail crop, the garbage bins in the bottom right are suspiciously sharp, but the grass around the base of the tree is detailed enough to indicate that the tree might have been the real target. But even the signs past the tree show that the depth of field was allowing a lot of leeway.

    The clouds were clearing quickly and I was lucky to get a set that I felt was perfect. It is ironic that this 2 min. short is particularly calming and relaxing, but the actual recording was tightly scheduled and rushed.

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    Part 3

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    This part was recorded on May 17, which was the due date. The original clip I recorded was borderline. It was taken with the Panasonic lens and the autofocus could be seen "seeking" a bit. The focus was overall a good compromise "hyper focus", but the closest branches sometimes looked a bit soft. The clip was good enough, but I wanted to see if I could do better. So I went back with my Pentax 50mm F2.0. I tried a "focus pull" but again, my tripod was inadequate and merely touching the lens caused visible shaking, so I used the extra time at the end of the clip instead.

    Since the "focus pull" ended with the focus near the tips of the branches along the bottom, quite a bit of the background branches are out of focus. The detail crop of the upper right of the frame is actually just barely in the depth of field, but it is easier to see the branches because there are fewer of them.

    Do Pentax lenses have a "Pentax look"? Some people say that it is true. In this clip, the colours seem softer and a bit creamier, but that could just be the sunlight on that day with the camera pointed in that direction. I can't tell.

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    Part 4

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    Of the clips that I recorded on the 15th, this was the only one I put out of order in the final short. I did not want to end with it. It is also the only clip I recorded with an exposure adjustment. I have no record of how far off the EV was but I think it might have been EV = +1.3. I just lightened it until the blossoms looked good overall. I do not remember if there were any clouds near the sun. The blue sky retained in the corners was probably just the result of reduced optical transmission ("vignetting").

    The SLR Magic 8mm F4 lens was set at F8, which I feel is the only setting it can be used at, and the camera automatic ISO was probably ISO-200. I do not think I bothered to re-focus after the clip in part 5, so this was probably just "depth of field". The sun flare is not bad.

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    Part 5 [clip 58]
    - road by Grenadier Pond

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    This clip was used without readjustments, and it actually was better than it looks. I tried adjusting the gamma in the captured frame and shadow detail is quite usable. That attempt went a bit further than I like and I think I would have preferred a gamma somewhere between the adjustment and the original. But that is the real reason I did not make it in the first place. It could take me hours fiddling with it to get it right, and it was already late into the night of the 17th -- my deadline. I started the upload to YouTube at 23:50 on the 17th and it was not completed until around 00:15 on the 18th, which was more work than I allocated for it.

    On the other hand, I am glad I did not alter this clip because I ran into the problem of having people's faces in it. If people are identifiable, then I need releases, either on paper or at least verbal. I would rather just not have faces in my videos than take chances. In this case it was borderline. If there are few pixels in the faces then they become "generic". In this case, it was becoming arguable. But the shadows helped obscure them. So even if I had the time to adjust the gamma in the clip I might have decided not to bother.
     

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  3. VidThreeNorth

    VidThreeNorth No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I was doing some research regarding the sensor in the Yi-M1 (Sony IMX269 sensor) and wandering through the web links I found that apparently the Yi-M1 is available again.

    Prices are US $599.99 for the camera in white and both lenses:

    YI M1 Mirrorless Digital Camera Pearl White

    or $549.99 for the black version:

    YI M1 Mirrorless Digital Camera

    NOTE:

    - Old stock from previous releases is currently still around at prices under US $300 (not sure of the lens packaged).

    - Also, there has not been a firmware update since version 3.2 was released in the 2018 Fall, which means the new bug in the 2K video mode is still there, and no further improvements.

    - Also, I checked the Website for spare batteries and there are none.
     
  4. Braineack

    Braineack Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    but why would anyone want it? especially at that price?
     
  5. VidThreeNorth

    VidThreeNorth No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    At the $550 - $600 US w/both lenses, it cannot really compete with the Panasonic G7 w/14 - 42mm "Version 2" zoom going for under $500 US. That much is an easy call. But the under $300 US kits are not so easy. If I could get the kit with the 42.5 mm F1.8, I would consider that lens to be worth about $300 US, so the body is essentially free. A "free" body? That is actually hard to argue. The body is not wonderful, but it's not "completely worthless" -- at least not if you already have Micro 4:3 in the first place. It is the best body I have for adapting manual focus lenses on. But still, $500 US for the G7 w/the Version 2 zoom is the long run better choice with really strong UHD video capabilities. If I was really looking for a camera, I'd probably go with the G7 kit.
     
  6. n3eg

    n3eg TPF Noob!

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    I just ordered one with kit lens for $150 at Amazon. We'll see how this works out. I'll also be comparing the 12-40 lens with the Olympus 14-42 and the Kodak 12-45. So far, the Kodak has a slight edge.
     
  7. VidThreeNorth

    VidThreeNorth No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    You have the Kodak zoom? Now that is interesting. It would be great if you could post a few pictures from that one.

    I can tell you a bit, generally about the Panasonic and Olympus 14-42 kit zooms:

    First Generation:

    I'll start with the Olympus. On an optical bench it seemed to be a pretty good lens. But during testing -- even WITH in body stabilization, some testers found motion blurring. Some attributed this to "whip" action of the lens assembly. from shutter-shock. They felt that there might be some "play" in the lens assembly. I'm not so sure about that. One thing I found using the OM-D E-M10 body and my Olympus 40-150 4.0 - 5.6 zoom is that when I used it on my monopod, I generally got good sharp pictures. But I tried a practice set hand-held over the winter. It was a cloudy day, but not really heavy, and I was probably targeting around 400 - 500 meters. I think I got around 4 out of 5 motion-blurred, even with image stabilizing ON. That was terrible. If other lower cost Olympus bodies were like that, then the lenses might be ok.

    NOTE that the E-M10 has a setting to reduce shutter shock, but I have not bothered with it yet. As I said, I have no problem when I'm using my monopod, with is most of the time.

    The first Panasonic kit zoom did not look so good on an optical bench. It was not outright terrible, but it was borderline mediocre. There were signs that some of them might have had lens centering issues. I would guess that this might have been from the OIS lenses not lining up "at rest".

    Second Generation:

    The 2nd generation Olympus seemed to test better than the first generation, but this might have been either partly or wholly the result of a difference in the bodies.

    The Panasonic 2nd generation zoom measures much sharper than the first generation. It is a new lens design with more aspherical lenses (I can't remember whether the 1st generation had any asphericals), and fewer actual lenses. In generally, one prefers to get the 2nd generation if possible for either brand.

    The Yi 12 - 40 is similar in performance to the 1st generation Panasonic. It is not quite as good as the Panasonic overall, but actually, not that different. The worst performance is at the wide angle end. There is heavy barrel distortion which is corrected during processing. So the corners are stretching pixel data.

    On the other hand, when recording UHD, the camera only uses the mid-sensor pixels, so the worst part of the lens is not used. So it actually is not that bad for UHD video.
     
  8. beagle100

    beagle100 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    OK, so after a couple of years you still like the Chinese camera ....
    www.flickr.com/photos/mmirrorless
     

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