Testing Inspire 1 LOG Mode in Nepal

LOG mode is a new feature that has been added to the Pilot app for the DJI Inspire 1. We put LOG mode to the test in the immaculate serenity of Nepal’s snowy mountains.

We accessed LOG mode through the Function menu in the Pilot app and began our experiment. LOG mode includes a tool that can convert 60Mbps YUV4:2:0 (8bit) H.264 compressed code into a ProRes YUV4:2:2(10bit) stream, with a higher bitrate. The ProRes stream is compatible with Adobe Premiere Pro and Apple Final Cut Pro, giving users more in post-production. LOG mode makes it easy to capture both light and dark details with great accuracy.

Select LOG mode in the Function menu of the Pilot app before shooting.


When used properly, LOG mode can greatly improve the final quality of your videos. Using LOG mode to capture videos provides a wider dynamic range, as well as more information and greater detail. This allows for greater creative control in post-production. The following image is a screenshot from a video taken in LOG mode.


As you can see, the finer details in the dark area have been preserved in this picture. Compared with videos captured in normal mode, the footage from LOG mode tends to seem a little gray/white. The result is a somewhat dull visual effect. While this may seem disappointing at first, the gray/white coloring is what provides greater flexibility and allows you to make more color adjustments in the post-production stage.
Before making any adjustments to the LOG mode footage, we have to correct its color. The Color Correction Tool that we use, which is part of a plug-in called Magic Bullet Looks, corrects the image coloring with the press of a button. Please note that it may take some time to correct the color of a video. (My computer with an i7 processor can only correct five frames per second.)


There are four options in the Profile section of the Color Correction Tool. The main difference between them is bitrate. Arranged by bitrate, from low to high, the four options are: Proxy, LT, SD, and HQ. In most cases, Proxy (350 mbps) will be sufficient. The Color Correction Tool also provides four different gamma calibration options, including: gamma calibration curve in Inspire 1 normal mode, standard Gamma 2.2 calibration curve, standard Gamma 1.8 calibration curve, and linear with no calibration. I used gamma calibration curve in Inspire 1 normal mode.


After using the Color Correction Tool, the video color seems more natural and the finer details are preserved. We can import the video into Adobe Premiere Pro or Adobe After Effects for editing and get creative in post-production editing. (Notes: Choose .MOV as the video output format in the Color Correction Tool if you want to import the video into Adobe Premiere Pro, as .AVI is not compatible with Adobe Premiere Pro. You can use either format if you are importing the video into Adobe After Effects.)


After the video has been imported into Adobe Premiere Pro, we can adjust the color and brightness.


With a little tweaking, the color effects are vastly improved. Video created in LOG mode (with 10 bit depth) provides a lot of color adjustment flexibility in post-production. If you are a professional photographer or color adjustment expert, you can use LOG mode to unleash the full potential of the Inspire 1.

The advantages of LOG mode are most obvious in dynamic range footage. The footage is created using LOG mode and is converted using the Color Correction Tool. After the color is corrected, the footage seems slightly darker and the details in the dark area are more difficult to see. To correct this, we can use video editing software to adjust the brightness. Because the footage is encoded in a 10 bit format after the color correction process, the brightness can be adjusted and the details in dark area restored.
First, we shot some dynamic footage using LOG mode:


Then used a Color Correction Tool to convert it:


In this footage, the small details in the nearby mountains cannot be seen until we have used the Brightness Curve Correction Tool to edit it.



After correction, the details in the nearby mountains become visible. We are then able to adjust the color and apply different styles, as desired.


The following pictures were created in LOG mode and the Color Correction Tool was applied.
Set 1: Lake
LOG Mode:


After using Color Correction Tool:


Set 2: Snowy Mountains

LOG Mode:


After using Color Correction Tool:


Set 3: The Temple
LOG Mode:


After using Color Correction Tool:


Inspire 1 Log Color Correction Tools Downloads Link as: