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iDynamic Range possible to hack?
  • Okay, so I've recently been very impressed with the "iDynamic" setting on the GH2, and the results it can achieve. It is a phenomenal feature to have, and is pretty unique out of all the video recording devices out there.

    Do you reckon that it might be possible to change the threshold of the iDynamic setting, or perhaps enable some kind of manual settings (an "always on" thing would be sufficient in my book), to give the shooter more control, and stop it from requiring fair underexposure to activate it?

    I've attached two pictures that REALLY show what iDynamic is capable of, and how many creative and technical opportunities it opens. Unfortunately, I wanted the interior to be brighter, but when I increased the exposure, iDynamic decided that it didn't have to do its job anymore, and turned off. :\
    idynamic off.png
    960 x 540 - 805K
    idynamic on.png
    960 x 540 - 933K
  • 95 Replies sorted by
  • I'll put it in the plans.
    Try to look in more detail.
  • That would be great,thanks VK
  • can you hack iDynamic to work in cinema 24 mode PLEASE its the one thing REDs got on us besides resolution :)
  • Yes, that would be so great ;)
  • @PerryWilson iDynamic does work in 24p mode
  • I read it doesnt work in any of the movie modes... and if it does then great, but 2 things... can we hack it to stay on... not choose when it wants? and second does it work with a hacked GH2 i.e. 176mbit GOP1
  • Thanks Vitaliy. Any advancements in this area will be appreciated by a lot of people.

    @PerryWilson iDynamic works in all of the video modes... 50i, 50p, 24p etc. And yes, of course it still works on a hacked GH2. :)
  • @Matt

    Can you scientifically show that iDynamic is doing?
    I mean, shooting stops chart, or many ND filters other bright window or light. And comparing results.
  • I cant do anyhting with iDynamic because it only works when IT wants too... and I cant seem to MAKE a situation it likes... but sure enough I stumble across a shot it does like.... but I see NO difference in on and off... even HIGH and OFF have no difference... I have a feeling this is a stills only kinda thing
  • @Vitaliy_Kiselev

    I don't have any kind of chart on hand, but I will perform a couple of experiments and report back with some samples.

    @PerryWilson

    Those screenshots I posted are from video mode... the difference is quite clear, and it's obviously working ;)
  • WOW REALLY? I havent had a chance to see it in action I guess... :/ I tried it but it wouldnt activate... and also it does nothing in low light... Are you noticing a lot more grain?
  • iDynamic appears to only work with Panasonic lenses. It does not work with third party manual lenses.

    In a high contrast scene, iDynamic boosts the shadows and leaves the highlights untouched.
  • Panasonic's iDynamic Range appears to work similarly to Nikon's Active D-Lighting, which is available on the Nikon D5100 (among others):

    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikond5100/page14.asp

    I've tried this feature on both GH2 and D5100 and had mixed results. When ambient lighting is stable and the camera remains fixed, it does appear to handle blown highlights more gracefully. But if the camera moves or light changes, the camera may react in a way that visibly glitches the exposure and ruins the shot. The problem, as usual, is that these dynamic exposure modes were designed for still photography rather than continuous video shooting. To work reliably, exposure would need to be locked down during a take, which would disable the dynamic exposure adjustment.
  • @Vitaliy_Kiselev

    iDynamic with manual lenses would be awesome!
  • Isn't the lesson here the same ole same ole? Stick with manual shutter, manual exposure, ISO as low as you can stand and all the electronic enhancers OFF? As clean and unprocessed an image as possible, along with full manual control seems like the safest bet. Only ETC now and then.
  • @brianluce what are you talking about man... why would you be against more stops of DR? lol
  • It depends, because if the processing is before the compression, that is at raw level, you could get much more dynamic range that will then be squeeze into the 8 bit jpeg (photo mode) or codec for video. At raw level you usually get about 3 to 4 stop of dynamic range more than in jpeg. It would look very flat and unpleasant for 90 % of photos. It would require that everytime you have to apply an S curve to get a pleasant image. So manufactures apply those curves for Mr consumer that won't post process his image. But when you are in contrasty situation you would loose a lot in the shadows or highlight depending on your exposure. So a system like D-lighting in Nikon cameras will tend to underexpose by one stop (to preserve highlight) and boost the shadows before compressing it in post. It can make the shadows a bit noisier, but as this process is done with the raw file before jpeg compression that result will be cleaner and better than the usser doing it in post with the jpeg file.

    If the same goes for video, you could gain some stop of dynamic range in this way. In fact it is the same principle as slog. If the example above is any indication it would be massive, it looks even too good to be true (I am not bashing the poster above). I hope he post some of the video of it for us to see how the it looks in motion. If Pan is not using tricks like double exposure, again because I am baffled by the result above.
  • Exactly. This looks like a great feature if it's available with manual lenses in movie mode. Like a graduated filter almost.
  • The screen grabs posted do look very good. How does iDynamic actually work? It seems almost like the ability to set the ISO setting of each receptor on the sensor individually rather than globally.
  • IDK but if VK can make this work in constant on in the tjhree fifferent amounts that iDynamic offers in 108024p mode with non panny lenses... then Good Bye RED HDRx hello iDynamic :)
  • @PerryWilson
    Because I'm skeptical that iDynamic creates real DR, just as some people think electronic sharpening is real resolution.
    @dannnyel
    iDynamic processes footage before compression? This is confirmed? I'm skeptical. Anyone know?
  • If you take my example above it is not creating more DR. What is happening is that it is using more of the RAW capture DR of the sensor than in a normal... pleasing curve. This is what theoretically something like the technicolor flat profile is doing with the Canon cameras. In fact it is the same as when you use the dynamic or smooth profile. The dynamic one will be more contrasty (less DR) and more vibrant than the smooth one (the smooth one is not creating more Dr, it is the vibrant one which is disregarding the available DR), but in this case it would be an even higher DR less contrasty curve than the smooth one. Now everything I am saying is just speculation, but the principal is the same.
  • If I'm understanding this right, this feature could be helpful as mentioned, but if it's constantly changing under light changes it worthless for video with constant scene/lighting changes.

    Now, if we can make this constant as others pointed out here, this would be freaking great. Now, of course hoping this is all done at raw level.

    word
  • I reckon its doing something like Apicals adaptive contrast enhancement algorithim (but I'm guessing too). The foundry have a filter in the furnace suite ('Contrast') that does this. http://thefoundry.s3.amazonaws.com/products/furnace/nuke/documentation/Furnace_4.2_Nuke.pdf Check page 60. I use it all the time, its quite amazing and extremely controllable (er.. the furnace filter that is, never had any joy using the in camera iDyn). Its not creating additional DR, but it is making a really impressive improvement.

    http://www.apical-imaging.com/UserFiles/Apical%20iridix%20overview%20_images_.pdf irdixs white paper.
  • Guys, the point is that iDynamic is perfect for situations such as the sample I posted, and any improvements would be welcomed.

    iDynamic works by adjusting the ISO sensitivity at a per-pixel level, depending on what the brightness of the image is. That's why it's so phenomenal. There are no halos along edges, and absolutely no motion artifacts either, so a locked down shot is absolutely unnecessary. Also, it's far better than a RAW image in regards of contrast and punchiness, because it's actually adjusted per-pixel, rather than just the whole image being flattened to fit all the data in; the data is being adjusted instead, and its results in situations where required are absolutely fantastic and it cannot be dened. :) The sample I posted demonstrates this really well. I mean, which looks flatter to you... the iDynamic picture, or the one where it's off? :) I must add that these images have been altered in no way, and are screen grabs from 1080p24 footage.

    I'll get some motion samples for you chaps, so you can see how it can be useful in so many situations where the extra DR is an absolute must. :) It's one of the most underrated features that the GH2 has, I think, and hacked functions of it would move the camera up yet another notch in usability for so many things.