GH2 Hacker Nick Driftwood Takes the Canon 60D with Magic Lantern RAW for a Spin
Strides are being made to get more and more resolution and frames out of the lower-end Canons using the Magic Lantern RAW video hack. Right now the only way to get continuous recording is by shooting at about 960 x 540 at 24fps, but other resolutions are working for a specific number of frames. Nick Driftwood, who has done a considerable amount of work with the Panasonic GH2, has been shooting some tests with the Canon 60D, and he’s posted his first video online. We’ve also got a metered dynamic range test comparing H.264 and RAW on the 5D Mark II, as well as a fantastic example of what the Canon 5D Mark III using Magic Lantern is capable of.
Nick Driftwood’s People, shot at 1728 x 992, which only records for under 10 seconds at this frame rate:
Some info about his workflow and how you can get similar results (you can read more about working with the 60D over at the Magic Lantern forum):
Download & install ML onto SD card, Download marekk’s latest 60D stuff (-with LV_AF_RAW) and overwrite ML stuff where specified. Initialise the RAW record mode after running the module off the M tab in Magic Lantern.
Set RAW-enable to ON and choose framesize (1728 x 992 for 1920 scale).
Record some RAW footage.
Download and install for Win users: BATCHelor_1.2_by_FATPIGtures GUI (fatpigtures.com/software/) or on Mac use the OSX raw2dng GUI app for splitting the RAW file into DNG images.
Take these files and import into Adobe Effects as in my quick and dirty approach:
Import each RAW set of DNGs into Adobe After Effects (and change exposure, colour, highlights, shadows, etc…), then ‘interpret’ the footage as whatever frame rate it was recorded as and save setting using ‘remember interpret’ and apply it to all your clips, make a composition file and change the file duration roughly calculated to the total length of all your clips (you can always extend/reduce by editing the composition later), then select all clips and drop them into the composition – space them out – and render the composition out to lossless. Bring the rendered output file into an NLE for further editing.
* Dont forget to set Project workspace to 16bit in AE.
Even though the 60D and some of the other lower-end DSLRs probably won’t get very high recording times at anything close to 1920 x 1080, it still may be useful in certain situations, especially for getting B-roll or for very high dynamic range shots which can have very short takes. Surprisingly, under 720p in RAW video mode can still get some nice results when slightly upscaled, but it probably won’t intercut as well with higher resolution images.
Check out this Dynamic Range Test from Daniel Miller shot on the 5D Mark II:
Meterings taken with Sekonic L758 Cine. Spot meterings taken with reflective meter. Generic Camera Profile.
Technicolor Cinestyle used for h.264 clips.
Original files can be downloaded here: daniel.nickcomardo.com/magic_lantern_dr/
Looks like a few shots are soft. It was bright and hard to see the LCD.
Improvements are coming almost on a daily basis, so I would not rule anything out at this point. But right now, the Mark III is still the only camera that can give the full 1920 x 1080 image with RAW.
- Canon 60D RAW Video — Magic Lantern forum
- Driftwood Productions
- Daniel Miller
- Plaid Zebra Films
- Left Coast Digital