Why Am I Shooting 4K Again? Amazing, Inspiring Videos from Panasonic Remind Me

by Karin Gottschalk7 Comments

I encounter my fair share of 4K sceptics online. Sometimes I even begin to doubt my own enthusiasm for the 4K format. But then all I have to do is watch some great 4K footage on a 4K or 5K monitor and I am snapped back into optimism once more.

And then there are the all the benefits of 4K footage when editing for FHD (aka 1080p) output. Panasonic recently released a video about exactly that on its Panasonic Lumix Video channel at YouTube.

Sometimes I just have to be reminded. And now I’d like to share those reminders and that enthusiasm for 4K acquisition with you, even when exporting to other, smaller formats. Now if Panasonic could share some 4K videos in 4K!

Introducing 4K Video Advantages – Benefit in Full HD Video Production

Shooting 4K for output as HD. Fix Jitter. Reframe. Digital Dolly. Zoom In/Out. Fix Tilt.

Introducing 4K Video Advantages – A Revolution in Videography – I

Cropping, applying movement, tilting and levelling, stabilizing, extracting still images.


Introducing 4K Video Advantages – A Revolution in Videography – II

Shooting fashion in 4K then extracting stills, and editing stills, for reproduction in print.

Introducing 4K Video Advantages – A Revolution in Videography – III

About 4K Photo, shooting for 4K photographs and how to extract 4K photographs in-camera.


Introducing 4K Video Advantages image

There is quite a bit to think about there, when shooting for video and when shooting for stills. The second in the A Revolution in Video set has got me committed to shooting some portrait projects in 4K Photo mode. My favourite format for portraits is 3:4.

A quick and dirty test flipping my GH4 on its side shows it is perfectly feasible to shoot video portraits in portrait orientation. Though if I am going to make a habit of it then I should look at a battery grip to make it easier handholding my camera for long periods.

(cover photo credit: snap from the video)


  1. Wow.  Let’s just shoot it in 4K and throw all technique and precision out the window and screw shooting it correctly in the first place and then fix it in post.  I’m not blind to the technical benefits that 4K offers 1080 in editing when you need to fix something but that is a LAME reason to upgrade an entire workflow (increased file size and storage requirements, new computer and software, new camera and lenses, etc) when properly shot 1080p will do the same thing.  How about we all just be better camera operators instead of using premature technology as a crutch?  1080 makes great 1080, too!

  2. Having been shooting 4K now for months, I can’t get enough of it. It’s not pre-mature in the world I do business. Rather it’s a superior image quality both on screen and in print. Wide shots are sharp instead of muddy, printed photographs are gorgeous from it,  and it’s easily the biggest breakthrough in both photography and video since the invention of the digital camera. Oddly when I switched from film to digital, as one of the first pros in the country to do so, I was literally mocked and laughed at by the leaders and speakers in the industry. Then I won the WPPI Grand Award. Suddenly digital wasn’t something to laugh at any longer. 4K is not the future, rather it’s the now. It matters to still photographers and video pros even if they refuse to see it. Pros need to get their head out of the sand and realize that it’s better to lead than to complain about this great innovation.

  3. Always has been, and always will be better to originate in a format of higher resolution, greater dynamic range, and larger color space than distribution.

    Only my mother was ever confused how it was possible for her favorite movie, Gone With The Wind, to be released on VHS although it was made on old technology so many years before.

  4. DannyGrizzle how soon do you really think 4k distribution will ‘dominate’? Feels to me like it will be between 5 and 10 years really… at least in the US, the ‘pipes’ just don’t have enough room to shove that much video down… unless something like H.265 really improves the bandwidth usage

  5. planetMitch DannyGrizzle I’m saying when UHD displays are readily available today at Walmart and Sam’s Club, and there is not much price premium. I will personally never buy another 1080p display on behalf of my clients. I predict you are going to see products announced at NAB 2015 that will clarify new opportunities for producers. Until network infrastructure converts entirely to fiber optics, we may have a pipeline problem. Set top boxes may not be entirely dead. If someone like AtomOS were to do a 4K variant of the Ninja Star, it would be dynamite. Blackmagic could do the same with a 4K/UHD HyperDeck Shuttle. We are too constrained by the broadcast model. I’m not a broadcaster, but I see enormous potential in controlled distribution narrowcasting. 4K is visibly superior to HD, and it has a simple mass market selling proposition that every consumer can understand: “4 times the image quality.” Until fiberoptics and network bandwidth allow, there is a window of opportunity for producers to create content delivered in controlled distribution that will standout from the HD crowd and delivery an “Oh wow!” consumer experience. AtomOS and Blackmagic are actually my fallback position, but paying $500 per screen is acceptable to me in commercial applications right now (adding a 50% – 33% increase cost per screen deployed) and also the benefit to image quality of gentle ProRes compression. My first hope was cheap USB3 content distribution, same as what the manufacturers demo these displays with at retail. But I’ve lost hope in that due to immature file format specifications and each brand’s proprietary codecs. I’ll gladly settle for an SSD based playback device, hopefully one with IP connectivity so that I could potentially update programming without cost or complexity of physical access to display systems in the field.

  6. Why is everyone hung up on the idea of broadcast or how it looks on TV? That’s only a small piece of the story… I am giving a keynote speech on this topic in Cologne, Germany at BFI on Tuesday + a WPPI Masterclass in Vegas in March. This isn’t some futuristic thing, this is real and happening right now, and it’s a profitable opportunity for those that can see it’s potential.

    It’s important to remember that not everyone is thinking of 4K for broadcast or for feature films… Not everyone is a videographer either. Some of us create visually interactive iPad apps, blogs or websites, and printed client projects for a living. Sometimes all of the above at the same time! This is a growing trend, and a profitable wave to be riding!

    Virtually every time I do a well lit video shoot for a client they ask if I can shoot stills as well. 4K solves that conundrum and equals greater pay. Even an iPad needs greater than 1080p for their Retina display in stills. This isn’t about broadcast in my professional life, it’s about everyday assignments and keeping clients coming back.

    Many of us out here are thinking of how it impacts our personal lives as well. If I am forced to choose a camera to travel with; on vacation with my family for instance, I will choose a GH4 today simply because I don’t want to have to choose between shooting video or stills. I can do both, and when I shoot video, I can pull stills where needed. If I shoot 4K the problem is solved and stills quality meets somewhere in the middle.

    Then there is flicker free time lapse to consider, which it just so happens is built in. Then there is the EVF to consider and again it’s built in. The autofocus is faster than my Canon DSLR systems, It shoots 40fps in stills mode, the video is more detailed than a C100, and it’s smaller and lighter than all of the above. 

    4K is a buzzword love it or hate it… But it’s truly significant to a lot of us and how we make a living. Now I can carry one lightweight camera bag with the ability to do far more than 3 or 4 filled with additional camera bodies, loops, evf’s, shoulder rigs, and gadgetry to make it work like a mirrorless camera.

  7. I have been shooting 4k with the GH4 and I personally enjoy it. When I edit I find that sometimes I can create several versions of the same shot, and even composite several intercut versions from the same original footage. This does not mean I did not plan my shots. The higher resolution 4k just gives me some additional choices in post that I did not have with the 1080 footage. Why not allow yourself the extra resolution to work with. After using the GH4 since it was released, and happy with it, I am now looking at purchasing 4k camcorder this year.

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