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TOPIC: Optimal GoPro settings for FCPX cinematic film?

Optimal GoPro settings for FCPX cinematic film? 03 Jan 2019 09:11 #98384

  • michachael
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Hi all!

I will travel to a sunny, exotic island in a few weeks and I want to capture this beautiful place as good as possible. I have purchased a GoPro Hero 7 Black, and will buy a MacBook Pro for editing footage of my GoPro and DJI drone shots.

Could you tell me what are the best settings I need to use, to make sure I ensure keeping the best quality for editing in FCPX? I am reading across sites that quite some people are struggling with choosing the right bitrate, the right codec, fps, having to post-edit and switch to 1020p for some reason, etc.. which is something I want to avoid and fix BEFORE shooting.

I searched the forum but couldn't find a clear answer.

Many Thanks for your help
Michael
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Optimal GoPro settings for FCPX cinematic film? 03 Jan 2019 15:18 #98388

  • joema
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I have several Hero5 Blacks but not the 7. I've edited lots of 4k H264 material from the Hero5 , DJI Phantom 4 and Inspire 2. My main advice is test it yourself -- image quality, recording time, frame rate, low-light ability in each recording mode, battery life, and how FCPX edits it. For the Hero5 I usually use 4k/30 and the default codec. The Hero7 has HEVC, which is about 1/2 the size at the same quality or better quality at H264's file size. However it can be more difficult to edit.

In general I prefer to import the camera footage using "leave files in place" and create proxies as needed for performance. It's usually not necessary to transcode to 4k optimized media -- for quality. It might be necessary for performance but proxies handles that.

The low light, autofocus and various camera aspects can change based on frame rate and resolution. E.g, maybe you want 4k/60 to give the option of 1/2 speed slow motion. But test that in low light vs 30 fps to make sure there's no problem.

Always use the same frame rate (or a multiple) on all your cameras. If your iPhone and DJI is set to 30 (or 29.97) fps, set your GoPro to that or 2x that. Try to never mix 24 and 30 fps.

Re using some log or "flat" color profile, don't do this without testing. IMO it's better to use a regular color profile for most casual shooting. I've seen many cases where people used a flat profile because it was the "cool" thing, then did not exposure it properly or have any idea how to handle that in post.
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Optimal GoPro settings for FCPX cinematic film? 05 Jan 2019 23:31 #98407

  • michachael
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Thank you Joema, helpful !!!
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Optimal GoPro settings for FCPX cinematic film? 06 Jan 2019 03:35 #98408

  • FCPX.guru
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Agreed about the whole flat log shooting. There are a dozen articles by industry leaders talking about how overused Log is. It was made for a specific purpose, most of us don't shoot like that. And I know many seasoned professionals who color LOG from scratch faster than using a LUT. Yeah, stay away from LOG.
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