Looking for advice on video with the TG-6

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Doc Harry

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Greetings,

I am having issues with shooting video with the TG-6, so I am looking for advice.

My full-size Nikon dSLR flooded last year, and so I decided to move to compact video. Based on the rave review at Backscatter, I went with their TG-6 video package. Over the New Year I took the camera to Palau for its maiden voyage. I use the camera settings recommended by Backscatter.

For a beginner's camera, it seems to work fairly well. The main problems that I am having relate to the battery life, autofocus, and color.

The battery life on the TG-6 is ambysmal. During 1 in 5 dives, the battery died before the end of the dive. I manually turn off the camera after each shot, but still the battery didn't last very long. I bought four batteries and swapped out a new battery after each dive. Is this a common problem?

The autofocus is unreliable, and it constantly goes in and out of focus. How do you handle this?

The manual white balance seems to work very well, but I am getting very purple pictures in natural light when I am deeper than 50 feet. Anyway to fix this? I tried some color correction in the video editor Pinnacle 26, but the corrective effects are minimal. I use a large WhiBal card for manual white balance, and I try to set a new white balance with every shot.

Below is a short composite video that I put together from my trip to Palau. I am wondering if this quality of video is typical for TG-6 users, or if I can do better. And if so, how? Thanks in advance.

 
The battery life on the TG-6 is ambysmal. During 1 in 5 dives, the battery died before the end of the dive. I manually turn off the camera after each shot, but still the battery didn't last very long. I bought four batteries and swapped out a new battery after each dive. Is this a common problem?
Are you using genuine Olympus batteries? All others I've tried have been crap, or approaching crap.
 
First, love Stick Figure! Can't wait for Cali-Vibes next month.

Battery life, I have had very mixed results with of brand ones.

Lights, how many, how many lumens?

Are you using any color filters?
 
Lights, how many, how many lumens?

Are you using any color filters?

Color with video lights is fine.

I am wondering if I can get better natural color with manual white balance -- better than what I have been able to get. I am not using a filter. Almost all of the video above was shot using natural light.

For instance -- the scene ar 2:20 is purple, despite manual white balance.
 
Nevermind, I see you are using a card and doing manual WB.

It's just the physics, a red filter will help.
 
Below 50 feet?
Up close maybe, I think the problem is if you white balance at arms length at 50 ft depth, and the point the camera out thru 50 plus feet of water the red loss is now even greater. It has to travel thru 50' from the surface, then 50' horizontally, for a total of 100'. The filter would probably do the same thing. I've only ever used them on a go pro, and the water color when you point off into the distance seems a little "off" objects up close look more natural, but the expanse of blue not so much.
 
The battery life on the TG-6 is ambysmal. During 1 in 5 dives, the battery died before the end of the dive. I manually turn off the camera after each shot, but still the battery didn't last very long. I bought four batteries and swapped out a new battery after each dive. Is this a common problem?

I bought my tg6 used. Since then I've used it on at least 150 dives.

Battery lasts 2 to 3 dives. Only photography though.



The autofocus is unreliable, and it constantly goes in and out of focus. How do you handle this?

With an external light (labeled as focus light)

This is not different than your nikon dslr.

It's lightning fast with even a 50 lumen light.

The requirement is for the light to actually illuminate the subject.
If recording video of large marine life, you'll need a light with reach.

The manual white balance seems to work very well, but I am getting very purple pictures in natural light when I am deeper than 50 feet. Anyway to fix this? I tried some color correction in the video editor Pinnacle 26, but the corrective effects are minimal. I use a large WhiBal card for manual white balance, and I try to set a new white balance with every shot.

You need artificial light.

Below is a short composite video that I put together from my trip to Palau. I am wondering if this quality of video is typical for TG-6 users, or if I can do better. And if so, how? Thanks in advance.

I find 60 fps at 1080 more aesthetically-pleasing than 30 fps at 4k.



The tg6 rapidly compensates for lack of illumination by rocketing ISO. Anything beyond 200 ISO is junk imo.

Checkout backscatter youtube on how to lock ISO.
The prerequisite is abundant lighting.

Water visibility also plays a major role.
No camera can jettison poor visibility.

See this video I took:

 
I can't give you advice on that specific camera but I can tell you that the purple you are getting is easily fixed using the Color page in Davinci Resolve.

Using the scopes in conjunction with the Primary Wheels as well as the Color Warper will easily get rid of the that purple water look.

Lighting for shots that are wide with the subject at a distance is virtually impossible. Lighting is great for closer subjects but any "reef shots" are going to need some color correction/color matching.
 
https://www.shearwater.com/products/perdix-ai/

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