5 Quick Tips for Shooting with the Atomos Shogun

5 Quick Tips for Shooting with the Atomos Shogun

We recently received the Atomos Shogun external monitor/recorder, a bit of gear a lot of customers have been eager to work with for some time now. We’re currently putting it through its paces and will have sample footage for you soon, but for now, we thought we’d put together a few tips and tricks that we’ve found useful when shooting with the Atomos Shogun.

Make sure you enable the channels you want to record

Make sure you enable the channels you want to record

1. Audio

If you’ve got something like a Rode Videomic Pro plugged into your camera and intend to have the Shogun record the audio off that, you need to make sure the Shogun is set to do so. On the bottom-left corner of the Shogun’s screen is a small icon representing incoming audio (highlighted in red here). Tap that to bring it up, then make sure that the “Rec” button is a bright red next to the audio channel you want to record. If you’re not seeing any activity in your intended channel, check your camera; audio recording might be turned off.

2. Ensure clean HDMI output

Cameras like the A7s can output not just the video signal to the Shogun, but also the on-screen menus – which will get recorded along with your intended footage. Make sure you turn those off!

 

Tapping the physical power button locks the Shogun's screen

Tapping the physical power button locks the Shogun’s screen

3. Lock your screen

Once you start recording, you can press the power button once on the shogun to lock the screen. This prevents any accidental touches from registering on the touch screen. You can also change a setting in the Shogun to power the screen down when you lock it, and save that use for in-between shots to save battery life.

Just about everything, including the top row of icons, is an interactive control

Just about everything, including the top row of icons, is an interactive control

4. Touch everything

Just about every icon on the Shogun’s main screen is interactive. We puzzled over how to format connected media for several minutes before one of us touched the tiny hard drive icon near the top-right portion of the screen. Turns out, the entire set of text labels across the top (highlighted in red), which we initially assumed were just status labels, are actually interactive controls for formatting media, choosing the recording codec and quality, etc.

Admittedly, this tip is more for those of us who can’t be bothered with the manual ;-).

Power the Shogun off using the on-screen controls

Power the Shogun off using the on-screen controls

5. Power off properly

Pressing and holding the physical power button on the right side of the unit to turn it off might seem like the intuitive thing to do, but that’s not how you turn the Shogun off. The proper way to do it is to tap “Menu,” then tap and hold the on-screen “Power Off” (highlighted above in red) button for about 3 seconds. Holding the physical power button on the unit is a forced power off, to be used only if the unit’s touch screen becomes unresponsive.


We’ll have test footage (including low light footage) from the Shogun shortly, but so far, we’re really loving this thing. What are your thoughts? As always, questions and feedback are welcome in the comments below.

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Sohail Mamdani is a writer, filmmaker, and photographer based in the San Francisco Bay Area.

2 Comments

  1. Thanks for the tips, a few of those I found out the long way as well… creative minds don’t read manuals, just how it goes. Anyway, my biggest issue with this Shogun GH4 pairing is the luma (i think) on the atomos compared to GH4. When I shoot indoors, the shogun displays a nice clean image that looks as it does on the GH4 screen or anything else I can see wrong with it; however, when im outdoors in a bright area, even if I use ND filters to properly expose everything for NO Zebra stripes, I get this ugly blown out feed on the Shogun, actually, even if the outdoor isn’t too bright it still looks terrible. 🙁
    And have you ever encountered HDMI problems causing corrupt files? If I accidentally touch the HDMI cord, and I mean barelyyyyyyy touch it, I may lose signal to the Shogun, and yes I’ve tried diff HDMI cords. Seems like Panasonic did not think the micro HDMI output through very well as it’s right near where I would pull focus and accidentally bump it.
    Any help is appreciated.
    Thanks guys.
    Nate

    Reply
    • I have the same problem. Slightly touching the HDMI cord corrupts footage..tried many cables also. Also the fake battery from Switronix also does not work and have not been able to find an alternative external power supply to the battery…
      Quite the bummer, good thing I have 5 Sony Batteries!!!

      Reply

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