No More Soft Footage – DJI Mavic Pro Picture Settings
Getting a really sharp and crispy Image with your DJI Mavic Pro can be hard at times. Sometimes all seams good on your Display but when you get back home you have blurry areas or your entire Image isn’t focused right. In this Tutorial I’m about to show you how to avoid all of the above and even how you can get some extra sharpness into your Footage.
Let’s beginn with the Pictures Styles. Most people think those Settings only affect the Contrast and Saturation of your Footage,but there is also a Sharpness Dial. This little number can have huge impact on your Footage. If you don’t know how the values are impacting your Recordings you’ll end up with a bunch of worthless Content. In my Video I’m comparing the Values all the way from -2 to +2. Sure -2 and +2 are total overkill, but still it’s good to know how they perform. In my opinion -1,0 and +1 are best ones and they all have their strengths and weaknesses.
Sharpness -1: Offers the most fault tolerance, if your ISO is high. It won’t show any or much noise in your shadows. Also there is no real hard focus point in your footage. So if your focus is a bit off you won’t notice to much of it. Through the loss Sharpness you also have problems with details in high contrast areas like treetops.
Sharpness 0: Is the average workhorse. You receive a decent Sharpness throughout the whole Image and there are almost no visible artefacts. When it comes to certain details like fine leaves or something like that don’t expect to much. So if you are not planing on editing your Footage in Post or show your creation on a big screen you can absolutely stick with the Sharpness 0 Setting.
Sharpness +1: Should the Weapon of Choice is you want all the crispiness there is. You immediately can tell the difference between Sharpness 0 and Sharpness +1. The amount of additional Details you get is incredible. But all that Sharpness comes with a downside. It introduces artefacts even though they are small but they are there. Also you introduce noise earlier then with the other Settings. So make sure to stick with a low ISO as long as you can.
Another thing that can mess with your Footage is the actual Focus of the Mavic. The Autofocus of the DJI Mavic Pro was a pain from the start. It is automatically set when you start up the Mavic and when you start a new recording. Unless you are using the continuous Autofocus this can result in some serious shift in your Focus point. Since the Autofocus is set with a tap on the screen it can be hard at times to hit the right spot. Then there is another thing. If you are shooting longer scenes with some changes in scenery you don’t want that focus jumping on your footage, if the autofocus isn’t getting the spot right away.
To avoid all these things you have to set your focus manually. If you fly the Mavic with your Phone it’ll hard to get the focus right on such a little screen. Fortunately DJI did include a Peak Focus Feature into the DJI 4 GO App. So if you ever wondered where those weird red lines are come from now you know. The Peak Focus is highlighting sharp edges with a red contour. Depending on how accurate you want your focus to be you can set the threshold in three steps. Low obviously highlights you everything that is remotely close to in focus. With the High Setting depending on the scenery and the lighting conditions it can be hard to find a focus point. It depends on your personal opinion what you like best. I go with the “Normal” threshold setup most of the time.
The only thing left to do is to adjust the Focus with the Focus Dail on the Main Screen to get as much red lines on your screen as possible. This may need some practice so make sure to try it in the field before you really depend on it. Practicing on your desk can help you understand the basics, but outdoor conditions are way harder to control.
I hope with this tutorial you’ll be able to avoid any blurry or smudgy footage in the future. It definitely helped me to reduce the amount of my rejected content. So happy and safe flying!