Just when you thought you had all of your Mavic Air 2S camera settings down, there is another one to choose from, your color profile. And there isn't much of a difference on your phone screen if you aren't paying close attention until you get back to your computer. Let's go over the different color profiles for the Mavic Air 2S, and when I use each of them.
A quick aside, in our settings, camera, the first choice we have is the format in either MP4 vs MOV. MP4 is a more widely accepted file for programs to use but is more compressed than mov. Mov does not compress the video as much, so the files are higher quality, but harder on the computer to playback. More on this a little later.
Another quick difference, when is comes to H.264 vs H.265 on the Mavic Air 2S, major difference is that H.264 is 8-bit, using 16 million colors. While H.265 is 10-bit and uses 1 billion colors.
I also made a LUT pack specifically for the Mavic Air 2S with different filters in every color profile, if you're looking for Mavic Air 2S Luts, check them out here!
Starting off with the Normal color profile in H.264, this is the best color and coding format to use if you have a slower computer, don't want to color grade, or want the easiest to share footage. Knowing this, you should also select mp4 as your format type to get the most compatible and easiest to read format. If you're filming in 5.4 or 4k, the file size will still be large and you'll need a decent computer to play it back and edit, but it will be the easiest on your machine and to share quickly. This is my go-to format for quick and easy sharing.
The next color profile is Normal again, but using H.265. This may seem close to the previous profile, but H.265 is less compressed than the h.264, so we'll be able to get a little more out of this if we want to color grade our footage since were using the 10-bit H.265, but we won't be able to push the colors is a creative direction. Our CPU will have to work harder to playback and edit this footage as well. This profile is kind of in the middle of just sending something quickly, while also being able to color grade easily since the colors are pretty true to life straight out of the camera. This profile is great if you want vivid, true-to-life colors without much color correction or grading.
D-log is DJI's version of a flat log profile. This is the best profile for color grading and pushing your footage in a creative direction. This profile flattens the overall image to retain more highlight and shadow details but requires post-production to bring out the colors and contrast. This profile is only available in H.265, so it will be very demanding on your computer's CPU to play back and edit, especially once you start color grading it. Make sure to have a strong computer if you're going to film in this color profile. The profile itself is pretty bland to look at straight off of the card, but this gives you the chance to color grade your footage and push it in a creative direction to get more vivid colors, levels, or tweak the color altogether. Personally, this is my favorite color profile to use, as I love color grading my footage. It takes longer to edit, but the creative shots you can get from this profile make it worth it.
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The last color profile is HLG, HLG is Hybrid-Log Gamma and this profile produces the most vivid colors straight out of the camera than any other color profile. This profile has vivid colors, along with good shadow and highlight detail. The HLG format was originally made for broadcasting and streaming, but this translates to really strong color saturation and details in a drone. I often have to desaturate the footage since it's so vivid. This is great if you want to get natural-looking yet vivid colors, but will still require some color grading in post.
Like I said earlier, I made a LUT pack for each of the profiles with no filter, and the Freewell ND filters, as well as the VND with Mist filter, so if you're looking for a quick way to get your footage looking natural so you can color grade it, check out the link in the description below. I also included some creative LUTs in that pack as well so you can easily have a starting point for some creative looks.
Some more things to be aware of, are that the zoom feature is not available in D-Log, HLG or 1080p 120fps. And the H.264 format is not available in 5.4k, you have to shoot in 4K or less to get access to the H.264 Normal picture profile.
For me, I love shooting in D-Log, MOV to get the most shadow, highlight, and color data to work within post-production. If I want something to quickly share, I'll shoot in 4K, Normal, H.264 in MP4. There are also situations to use HLG, but the results are so saturated and colorful that I often find myself desaturating it to look natural. It all just depends on your shot and how you want your final output to look.
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“Very good for the Mavic 2 pro, if there are other such good color profiles in the package, I would be happy to order it”