Once Apple added 10-bit video to the iPhone 12 this year I very much hoped that it would trickle down into third-party apps, and the good news is that it has.
First, back a month or so ago FiLMiC Pro added support for Dolby Vision 10-bit HDR, and now they just announced a new version of their popular log video in-app upgrade called LogV3 - and now in 10-bit. And the good news is this is a free update for current users.
And just to be clear, this new 10-bit LogV3 update is different than the 10-bit Dolby Vision.
First, Dolby Vision is HDR (high dynamic range) and LogV3 is SDR (standard dynamic range). Also, the Dolby Vision is natively part of the iPhone 12 and so while having it in FiLMiC Pro is great - primarily because of the manual control and higher bit rates - it's not that much different than shooting with the native camera app. And of course Dolby Vision HDR has a "baked-in" look. It's really a delivery format, not an editing one. So it's not designed for color grading in post (although you can do some), and that's exactly what LogV3 is designed for - color correction & grading in post-production.
And this new LogV3 update is exclusive and proprietary to FiLMiC Pro. They are using Apple's 10-bit HDR video, but then they do some behind-the-scenes app magic and create their own 10-bit SDR log footage from it.
Watch this tutorial/explainer video produced by FiLMiC Pro for more details about the new update:
So when should you use one or the other? Well, that's a subjective call. But for me I typically shoot log when I'm doing something narrative - like a film or a commercial or a music video, etc. Something you know you'll be color grading in post. But it can obviously be used in any situation you want, but it will require post work.
Dolby Vision HDR can also be used for movies etc., however, the look is baked in and so you don't have much room to manipulate that image in post (unless you work in SDR, then the HDR metadata is stripped away - but that's a topic for a different time). So for me, I would shoot this for projects you want to deliver quickly with limited or no post coloring.
Another thing to consider though - and again this is subjective - but shooting HDR can look "hyper real" (when viewed on an HDR display). So for me that doesn't necessarily look right, for narrative filmmaking in particular. In a weird way it almost feels like "3D", which can of course be great for some stuff, but not everything.
So in the end it's great to have options. And now with both of these new ways to shoot, we do (and btw, I haven't even mentioned the other NEW 10-bit FiLMiC Pro flavors including Natural, HLG and Linear - I'll talk about these soon).
One thing to note too: For now LogV2 is not going anywhere. You can still choose it using the iPhone 12 or on previous devices, which is great. It records in 8-bit and can produce excellent results. The new 10-bit LogV3 is only available on the iPhone 12 (and select *Android devices, too).
I'll have a lot more coverage of this new update soon. And, I currently have one new LUT pack for sale to use with LogV3 with more coming soon.
Happy mobile filmmaking!
*P.S. Here are the Android devices that currently support 10-bit log (and note, this is in HDR not SDR):
Sony Xperia 1 II
Sony Xperia 1
Xiaomi MI 10
Xiaomi MI 10T
Xiaomi Poco F2
Samsung S10 Series
Samsung S20 Series
Samsung Note 10 Series
Samsung Note 20 Series
One Plus 8/Pro (Special note: The ONE PLUS 8 does support 10-bit SDR)
One Plus 8T