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What Filter to Use?

pmh1nic

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I am a total beginner and need some advise. I will be spending some time camping at the beach at the end of the month and hopefully will have some nice sunny days for flying and doing a little video recording and picture taking. Based on the little bit I have read on bright sunny days you can get better results by using a filter. I purchased a set of filters (ND4, 8 and 16, CPL, ND32/PL and ND64/PL).

On a day with bright sunshine what filter should use? And if it should be an overcast day should I fly without any filter?

I know there may be other variables involved (various camera settings) but if you can point me in a direction to get me started it would be appreciated.
 
..... Based on the little bit I have read on bright sunny days you can get better results by using a filter. I purchased a set of filters (ND4, 8 and 16, CPL, ND32/PL and ND64/PL).

On a day with bright sunshine what filter should use? And if it should be an overcast day should I fly without any filter?..

I'm a newbie Anafi pilot but a retired aerial photographer so the use of ND filters is well understood. I just looked at this site and found the table partway down to be a great rule of thumb.
ND Filter - Why they are necessary for your drone - UnlimiteDrone

This video was very good too, because there is a real difference between using ND filters for still shots and video:

The last video I shot was in 1969 (!), so I'm stoked to try out the Anafi!! :cool:

The Freewell filters are the best....sounds like that's what you bought, and what I'm buying right now.
 
I will talk from a more manual point of operation for capturing video here, as that gives you solidity that your exposures will generally be constant, instead of changing from light to dark as you move about, which happens a lot when using automated exposure settings. Of course there is a caveat on that claim, which is: manual exposure is set for a certain aspect & light, if that changes through whatever means, then that exposure may need to be changed to keep as close to a constant exposure as is possible. I will also keep the conversation simple to understand, so some terms I use may not be technically accurate, but for the sake of passing across information as easily as possible, I will use the terms I use.

First off, I use an ND filter always for video, not for photography, as you read on, you will come to understand why (I hope). :)

It all depends on the type of footage you like to watch or want to acquire. By that, I mean, do you want to capture footage that looks more realistic in regards of motion blur to what the human eye sees every day, such as using 24 or 25 fps, or do you want more clinical frame rates such as 30 or 60 fps, which are more useful for action captures?

Based upon that decision, you then might like to follow the rule of thought whereby you basically keep your shutter speed at as close to double that fps choice as is possible for the shutter speeds available. So if choosing to capture at 25 fps, you would dial in a shutter speed of 1/50.

Keep your ISO a low as you possibly can, I nearly always work at ISO 100 for the Anafi. The ISO is the sensitivity of the sensor & basically, the higher it goes, the more amplification i being applied to the sensor, making it more sensitive & therefore the more quality you are losing of the captured image through noise & other deteriorations that come along as part of this amplification process.

That then means trying fitting the filters to see which one is appropriate for what you are wanting to capture. This can be done on the ground, if you hold the gimbal gently from below & above, so as to stop it from having undue pressure applied to it, whilst the Anafi is turned on. Some people choose not to do this, with fears that you are damaging the gimbal motors by making them work against your resistance at that time. I have been doing it since I first got my Anafi & the replacement without any damage being done, as have many others. (Disclaimer: my first Anafi - Ms Anafi the 1st - was assaulted viciously by a tree, which in the end lead to several complications, including a loose camera ribbon)

I find that I need the ND 16, 32 & 64 variable the most. The variable is a brilliant piece of kit, because sometimes you need something between the 16, 32 or 64 for correct exposure.

How do you know you have correct exposure? It's simple really, just make sure you have highlights turned on in the settings, then follow the following steps after all your calibrations are completed:
  1. Set your capture type, such as Natural or Cinema
  2. Set your frames per second (24, 25, 30, 60, 120 - 60 & 120 are accessed in the higher frame rates settings area & Cinema uses 24 fps only)
  3. Set your White Balance, according to what light is present on the day, be it Cloudy, Sunny, Blue Sky or whatever
  4. Set your ISO
  5. Set your Shutter Speed
  6. Aim your Anafi camera at a typical scene for what you are about to capture. If I am about to capture mainly land, I aim the gimbal so it has the landscape (a typical portion of it) as the predominant part & just a small section of sky visible. If I am capturing just land or buildings, I aim at that, or a representative portion of that, with it filling the frame, so the exposure shown is illustrative of that.
  7. Try the various ND filters until you get good exposure with no or very minimal over-exposed areas
Things that cause incorrect exposure once you are up in the sky include severe transitions from light to dark & vice versa, reflections of the sun off of water, roofs, etc... ND filters falling off (I've never had that happen with mine, but have had others share their woes with me as it has happened to them), the sun influencing exposure change as it appears near the edges of the scene or enters the frame. I'm sure there's more, but I've only just got up & haven't had my caffeine fix yet. Does this mean that you sometimes have to change the ND filter? Sometimes, yes! This is the frustrating part of working in changeable light conditions. If you have to, flick the controls to Sports mode & bring the Anafi back quickly, change the filter, get her back to where you were capturing footage, change back to Film mode. It's an annoyance, but it's not the end of the world.

Hopefully that's of some assistance to looking at manual exposure with the Anafi.
 
I'm a newbie Anafi pilot but a retired aerial photographer so the use of ND filters is well understood. I just looked at this site and found the table partway down to be a great rule of thumb.
ND Filter - Why they are necessary for your drone - UnlimiteDrone

This video was very good too, because there is a real difference between using ND filters for still shots and video:

The last video I shot was in 1969 (!), so I'm stoked to try out the Anafi!! :cool:

The Freewell filters are the best....sounds like that's what you bought, and what I'm buying right now.
Great suggested video!

I use the much cheaper Y & C branded ND filters, with no image quality loss, when comparing the footage captured with & without them in place. Comparing my footage to an acquaintances footage captured using the much more expensive Freewell set there is no discernable difference of unedited footage captured, using the same settings! So there are other options available, other than just using Freewell. Other brands will need to be applied after calibration of the gimbal though.
 
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Thanks Folks! I will experiment with the information you've given me and try to bring back some nice shots of the area where we will be camping. Hardly anyone flies there (in the five years I've been camping haven't seen one drone), probably because they don't want to go through the permit hassle. But I really wanted to use the opportunity fly and photograph so went through with filing the paperwork and paying the fee.
 
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Very useful I have been wondering how to use these things. I am from the 3/4" umatic generation and worked with analog 3 tube color cameras and a Polaroid SX70 for quick shots.

Glad we have someone that understands how to use these little camera birds
Thanks
 
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I'm a newbie Anafi pilot but a retired aerial photographer so the use of ND filters is well understood. I just looked at this site and found the table partway down to be a great rule of thumb.
ND Filter - Why they are necessary for your drone - UnlimiteDrone

This video was very good too, because there is a real difference between using ND filters for still shots and video:

The last video I shot was in 1969 (!), so I'm stoked to try out the Anafi!! :cool:

The Freewell filters are the best....sounds like that's what you bought, and what I'm buying right now.

Yes, the set I order were Freewell filters.
 

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