Luminous Landscape wrote a very detailled “Panasonic Lumix GH2 First Look”.
I like how they started the article: “At Photokina in 2006 I had dinner with a senior executive in the photographic industry. We were talking about the historical market battle between Nikon and Canon. At one point he paused and said, ->You know – the future doesn’t belong to either of those two. The future of the photographic industry belongs to Sony and Panasonic. They get it. As for as I can tell, neither Canon nor Nikon do. They’re simply putting higher resolution and cleaner sensors in the same old boring cameras. That’s not just what the future of this industry is about. Wait – you’ll see<-. ”
Those are the most interesting news:
- Even ISO 3200 is usable with just a bit of NR in post processing. This represents a good two stop increase in usable ISO sensitivity with comparable noise characteristics.
- The new sensor’s faster read-out allows the autofocus of the GH2 to apparently equal that of mid-level DSLRs. While I haven’t done any lab tests (I’m sure that the technical review sites will do so as soon as production cameras become available), my sense is that Panasonic has licked the AF speed issue on non-DSLRs.
- I did not have an opportunity to do much more than some basic video tests during the week that I have the pre-production GH2 for testing, but I can report that at first glance, every aspect of image quality seems very fine, with none of the mud that marred the GH1.
- The GH2 comes with an excellent 200 page printed manual. Panasonic is to be applauded for this
- Which brings us to the Panasonic GH2 specifically, and the G series in particular. Unlike some of its competitors, Panasonic “gets” user interface from a photographer’s perspective. Though the camera is small, its very comfortable in hand for someone with “normal” sized hands. If you have large hands, you may find the grip area somewhat tight for your fingers and so should test for yourself before purchase.
- At the risk of repeating myself, this is a photographer’s camera.
- About the Panasonic 100-300mm lens: How good is it? Very good, though again I have not done any lab tests, simply a few hundred real-world frames during a one week period. A little bit of vignetting, focusing is very fast, and silent.
- About the Panasonic 14mm f/2.5 lens lens: This lens requited itself exceptionally well during my casual testing, producing sharp contrasty images at all apertures with very speedy AF. There’s a bit of vignetting at wider apertures, but nothing problematic.
- When it comes to video the GH2 has it all over the NEX 5. Full manual video control, 1080 /24P, 24 Mbps AVCHD vs a highly feature constrained video offering on the NEX, and no EVF. No contest.
- After a week of testing I’ve decided to buy a GH2 and both of these new lenses to add to my Micro Four Thirds arsenal. These have been my go-to cameras for the past few years for light weight travel and hiking, and now the GH2 looks to significantly enhance the outfit. As for video, I’ve already mention that Chris has ordered one as well, and with his 30 years of film and video production experience I trust his eye when it comes to evaluating video quality as much as anyone.
What do you think folks? I have no doubt the Panasonic GH2 is an awesome camera and I can’t wait to see the upcoming GF2 camera and new Panasonic lenses! Well done Panasonic!!!
You can preorder the new camera and lenses using the links below. If you purchase a product using those links I will earn a small commission that helps me to keep thiw website running. Thanks!
Panasonic GH2 preorders (Click on store name to visit the product page):
Amazon US, Adorama, BHphoto, Amazon UK, Amazon France, Amazon Japan
Panasonic 14mm f/2.5 preorders:
Amazon US, Adorama, BHphoto, Amazon Deutschland, Amazon Japan.
Panasonic 100-300mm preorders:
Amazon US, Adorama, BHphoto, Amazon Deutschland, Amazon UK, Amazon Japan.
Via Luminous Landscape