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LUMIX S1 AutoFocus Test

Photo Moment - April 25, 2019

You've been asking so I shall deliver… a LIVE autofocus test using the full frame LUMIX S1! (And a non-live insert, because… well, just watch!)

Products Mentioned

Today's Q&A and Unedited Live Show

See what you missed in the full, unedited LIVE show (this starts with the Q&A; back up if you want to see the whole live show)


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Full Transcript

This transcript has been automatically generated and is provided primarily for text searching purposes.

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I own a GH5, S1 and S1H. (I loved the S1 so much I was going to sell it after I got the H but wound up holding it) Anyway....I think with Panasonic using a contrast based AF system while almost the entire rest industry has licensed PDAF an amazing story. The simple question "why?" is appropriate here. What is going on? Sony Semiconductor licenses PDAF sensors to Nikon, Olympus and Fuji but NOT to Panasonic. The two theories are: 1.) Panasonic only wants to pay for Sony non-PDAF sensor licensing. 2.) Sony wont license PDAF chips to Panasonic at reasonable prices! (#2 is what I'm being told) Very few people know which one is truly correct but I believe it is fair to say that AF is the #1 reason that hurts Lumix sales. I'm a true Panasonic fanboi today. I left Sony PDAF for Panasonic colors, codecs and 10bit color. But,...I'm a RARE customer. The average Joe would NEVER leave Sony or Cannon PDAF behind in favor of contrast AF. This will always be the "elephant in the room" when talking about how great Panasonic cameras are. If Panasonic were able to license Sony PDAF sensors,...their sales would DOUBLE or TRIPPLE what it is today. So, again....."why"? What is going on behind the scenes here in the industry camera wars?
I wish I knew! But thanks for being an arrant supporter. Fortunately AF is not the most important thing for many customers. But I don’t disagree with you.
​@PhotoJoseph - Last year, there have been some "changes" that happened between Sony Imaging and Sony SemiConductor. Let's see if Panasonic have been able to "negotiate" the licensing of Sony PDAF sensors for the three new GH6 series cameras. "If" they can?....we would see Panasonic sales numbers skyrocket. The last thing we want to see is this tag line; "Panasonic - For those who care about everything except AF" I just cant see Panasonic being the ONLY company left out of PDAF. If Sony wont play ball and sell to Panasonic at a reasonable price, Panasonic needs to get regulatory agencies involved. Anyway. The GH6 series can't survive for 3 years without PDAF or at least ToF (time of flight) AF. Panasonic contrast DFD wont carry their cameras for 3 more years until the GH7.(not against Sony, Cannon, Nikon, Fuji and Olympus all licensing Sony PDAF chips)
Hi, my video auto focus only works when i pressed half of the shutter. How do i turn my auto follow focus on? Thanks!
There's two AF modes; 1 and 2, somewhere in the settings. One does AF all the time and the other only does it while recording. One is to save battery but the other is in case you're using an external recorder.
Interesting. I have been playing with my S1H endlessly with different setting. I adore this camera but I'm trying to figure out if I can trust it yet in AF. I'm getting there one test at a time! I have found that slowing speed and lowering sensitivity will help with depth of field focus pulsing in the background.
Nice, keep us posted! I've had pretty good luck with it but TBH I do almost all video work in manual focus ;-)
@PhotoJoseph The app is a great way to use manual focus and tap on yourself if you are in front on the camera and have nobody to focus for you. If you are in a crowd and have to hold the camera high over your head "paparatsi" style on a politician, the S1H on the 24-105 seems to be pretty much OK. (Basicall)
Odd question at this point, but thank you for the video first off. I was wondering how you had those menu tabs on your screen on the right side. I'd love to have more controls available. I honestly had a hard time even finding the face detect that you had pulled up as well. Thanks!
Menu: Gear > Operation 1 > Touch Settings > Touch Tab
Does anyone know how to check for the shutter count on the S1? Thnx
Are you doing an update on auto-focus on the S1 NOW WITH NOV 19 UPDATE.
Wasn’t planning on it, no
Hello Joseph, I got Yesterday my new S1, it's a huge camera but fits perfect to my hands, but I can't open the RAW files in Affinity Photo nor in Luminar 3. Do you know something? I am a Windows User. How do you edit raw files? Thx a lot! Jog
Those companies may not have added raw support on windows yet. You’ll need to check with them.
@PhotoJoseph I asked already thx... But wich SW do you use to edit s-line Raws.?
How about af speed and sensitivity settings?

A Day In New York City
Equipment Used
Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GH3
7artisans 7.5mm F2.8
Really good and honest review of the AF system. Keep up the good work.
Have you tried this with the new update. Doesn't seem as quick as the new Sony.
Quick or smooth... Looks good to me for video.
love what you made! anyone told you you speak like rdj or iron man???
LOL no… but I’ll take it! 😁
I am pleasantly surprised to see a very smooth transition and very little "pulsations" in the background and even very little hunting on the face. Very smooth.
Very little pulsations or hunting should be No pulsations or hunting.
Latest af firmware 1.2 is pretty much perfect. Im also amazed that there is no focus shifting from the native lenses so far. Pretty impressive to be honest and definitely makes a case for dfd over pdaf.
I have a pana S1. I am really satisfied of the picture quality & ergonomics. I have just a strange issue. The autofocus in video mode is not working at all when there is no HDMI plugged in ?! Did you have to setup something specific in the menu ?
AF only is happening while the camera is recording. But when you connect HDMI, the camera doesn’t know what’s in the other end, so it enables AF all the time.
@PhotoJoseph Thanks for this quick and precious information Joseph !!
should have turned off the level viewer. amazing test.
Holy hell! That body looks massive with that battery grip!
Hi I hope it's better than my G9 for sure. But I think handheld (fully using the Dual IS) is a better test, and not just with a mostly black background, that's making it too easy for the contrast based AF I think. It needs to be in the streets and with non studio lighting with variable lighting conditions that aren't just fully controlled nor necessarily as contrasty. Handheld camera movements with subjects and objects filmed also moving.
Does the black background helps improve the camera's face detection?
No, that’s just what my studio looks like
@PhotoJoseph thanks! I got my S1 ;)
I think we're also interested in seeing if this will hold focus for talking head videos. From the live show that Gerald Undone did, you can see the S1 fails quite miserably at maintaining usable focus.
Superior video love it!
Hey @UCR8SyAWIDDc9U0LDMZg_QWg, how about physical remote shutter to that. Retailer told me that Canon remote should work (with that side 2.5mm input (if not wrong)).
I tried, its not working. How about remote triggers from Canon cameras if not use phone
24-105 is very nice lens.
It really is
I may be getting the s1, I'm wondering if it will be compatible with the Ziyun Crane 3. An update in firmware will be available in the future on the s1. Hopefully the tracking will be better. 14 stops is a good thing about this camera too.
Auto focus seem pretty decent...definitely usable.
will this camera do dci 4k after that paid upgrade????
Loving the production quality of recent videos. Intros and Outros pop. Just feels like you have moved things up to another level 👍
Thanks man! That’s the idea. Definitely adds more time to production though. Tough balance.
Try the 50mm lens..See if things improve. Be interesting to see the outcome.
It's just ok to be fair. Probably on par or a little worse than the competition. Would love to see it really tested with an f/1.4 lens if there is one for this system. Also Canon lenses via adapter test (if possible).
The best camera reviewer on YOUTUBE PERIOD.
Great technical review. Thanks for doing the test. When the subject is far from the camera, the focus is fast enough. Not great but fast enough. However when the subject is close, especially with longer focal lengths > 50, the lag is unacceptable. Presumably this has to do with how much the lens has to turn which is greater at close distances and longer focal lengths (why macro lenses have long barrels). This is not up to par with Canon's DPAF. My five year old 7D mk ii focuses faster than this. I got an S1 recently which I think is a phenomenal camera in every other way but focus tracking will remain its weak(er) point.
The electronic focusing mechanism is not the issue with the near-focusing on the S1. I believe it is primarily to do with the fact that DFD fundamentally needs to pulse the focus in order to know where to go, but to hide the distracting pulsing Panasonic has massively slowed it down in video mode to make it almost imperceptible. The result is smooth, accurate, but trickle-slow AF. DFD is fast, sometimes faster than PDAF, sure, but only in good light with good subjects in photo mode with wide aperture lenses and even then only 90% of the time.
It's not perfect, but we are loving it, and using it all the time. Something we didn't do with past systems. Thanks for sharing!
I have to ask when are you going to do the autofocus test. For still photography with some canon L glass or with the Sigma 60-600mm lens please🙏🏽
The Sigma L-mount / Canon adapter isn’t shipping yet so that would have to happen first, but I would never expect AF to be great on any adapted lens, so what’s the point? Native glass is where you’ll get the best performance. But, I do own a lot of Canon glass still so once I have an adapter, we’ll see.
Thanks ☺️🙏🏽
LOL at 3:00😂😂thx for this test I got S1 since two week and I found animals , people face detection the best IMO
Thanks for laughing at my pain! 😂😂 Seriously, good to know you’re finding the mode working well too!
That was a honest review and entertaining enough to hold me. Thanks for the review
Thanks for watching, and I'm glad you enjoyed it.
What picture profile was this
Really precise and honest test. The AF is good. Love the skintones and general color feel.
@PhotoJoseph Why are STILL pushing this phony shit? Contrast Detection Focus sucks, AND everyone else's tests how this. Why don't you just push Panny to adopt Phase Detection AF like everyone else. Why are they so fucking stubborn... and you too? Stop the bullshit and spin. It's sickening.
Popcorn time
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