Monday, July 18, 2011

Magic Lantern...and Apple ask for help.

Last week i mentioned on Twitter that i'd installed Magic Lantern on my Canon 550D. Well, it managed to survive a couple of days before i got rid of it again.

There's some nice features and it works pretty well, but to be honest it just got on my nerves while i was shooting and i didn't really use it got the chop. I liked the audio meters... but i don't record audio on the camera... so no need for them for me. I liked the 2.35:1 crop marks... but the graphics come and go as they please and this put me off...i'd rather frame for 16x9 anyway, that way i can animate the 2.35:1 crop later and use the bit of the frame i like best.  I couldn't get on with the zebras for under and over exposure. They just seemed to be lagging behind quite a lot which i found very off-putting.  But, the biggest issue for me was using ML with an external monitor. I use a monitor most of the time, but Magic Lantern has some real issues with this and just played up all the time.  I also missed the ease of switching ISO settings... using the ML menu to get to those sought after 'native' ISOs is fine, but it takes too long for my liking.  On the upside, the installation of Magic Lantern was fairly straight forward and i'd recommend having a look if those features are something you're looking for. It just wasn't for me.

Apple are asking for your comments on FCPX. Feel like giving them some pointers on what it needs to get back in your good books? Comment here:

Been up to my ears the last week in camera research for 'The Addicted' shoot. We need something that's going to excel in low light...and be able to give us both the shallow depth of field we want as well as dealing with some 'run and gun' type shooting. Tricky. The front runner at the moment appears to be the Sony FS100.... with an Atomos Ninja or Sound Devices PIX 220 to capture the Pro Res footage in as high a bit rate as possible.

I think the AF101 is out of the running... it's low light performance doesn't seem up to the job and i've not found any evidence that using an external recorder makes much difference... it appears to be an issue with the micro 4/3 sensor.  Obviously the 5D Mk2 could work in some situations, but it's not going to work for the run and gun type stuff and the H.264 footage won't take much grading before it falls apart. I'll still use my 550D for some of the shots... it's small size will mean it'll earn it's place on the set, but not for the main shoot.


  1. Which version of Magic Lantern did you install? Since you said zebras are lagging, I think you have a very old version.

    Try the one from July 8:

  2. That's the build I used. The lag wasn't too bad... but I found it just a bit distracting. Some of the features are really good, and of I captuted audio in camera I'd say it was vital... it's just not for me.

  3. They have a group where you can report those issues:

    Did you try to ask there for help? You should let the developers know about these glitches; they were always listening to suggestions from their users.