Ultimate Video DSLR? - Panasonic GH2

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by fivepoint, Sep 22, 2010.

  1. fivepoint, Sep 22, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2010

    fivepoint macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #1
    After the critically acclaimed GH1, which many considered to be the ultimate DSLR for video - even better than the Canon 7D, etc. - this week Panasonic announced the GH2.

    http://www.43rumors.com/continually-updated-panasonic-gh2-official/
    http://www.eoshd.com/content/354-Panasonic-GH2-Hands-on-and-sample-footage



    The GH1 got great reviews, and everything I've read so far about the GH2 looks to be very positive. Interested in hearing the thoughts of the experts here.

    Thanks!
     
  2. TH3D4RKKN1GH7 macrumors 6502a

    TH3D4RKKN1GH7

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    #2
    My only problem with the GH2 as with the GH1 was ergonomics. Way too small and light for my taste, but a lot of people like that. The Gh1 took some pretty respectable stills and when combined with a proper lens, took great video. The kit lens on that thing was superb for video purposes. This new one looks to be a winner, but I will probably hold off from one because of the ergonomics. It's more cramped than a T2i.
     
  3. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #3
    That makes sense... individuals used to the largest DSLRs might find it a bit cramped... others coming from P&S will find it too large... I've read mostly very positive things about the layout, design, ergonomics... but I get your concern.

    Some of the first beautiful sample video footage:
    http://vimeo.com/14574108

    “The GH2 is the best (disastrous) camera for video shooters!”

    The predecessor to the GH2 was the GH1:
    GH1 vs. Canon 5d Mark II vs. Red One
     
  4. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

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    #4
    It's not an SLR so I don't see how it can ever be considered the ultimate video DSLR.
     
  5. iShater macrumors 604

    iShater

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    #5
    Touche.

    My buddy brought the (i think) GH1 with him to Kenya last winter. I brought my Nikon D40.

    He had a great time with the video shooting, but the auto-focus for still shots didn't work for him as well.

    I think all around it is a great camera, good for doing both stills and video.

    fivepoint, it should be perfect for baby moments. And those moments pass so quickly, so make sure to capture as much as you can but still enjoy them without a camera in the way. :)
     
  6. KeithPratt macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    I've only seen two video clips from the GH2 so far, but both have seemed way short of the Canons in terms of dynamic range. Hopefully gamma settings can change that.

    Two other misgivings I have are the over the sensor size and codec. The sensor size rules out fast superwides. I'm less interested in the 5D for it's DoF characteristics than I am for the ability to put a 14mm f/2.8 on it. The codec is also a potential concern if they haven't enabled b-frames or otherwise somehow beefed it up.

    The aliasing thing will be of interest. This seems to be the linchpin of the AF100, and it would seem prudent for Panasonic to keep it exclusive to their $5000 camcorder.
     
  7. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #7
    Yes, it's not a DSLR technically... but that's the category all of it's competitors are in I suppose... so it's just a useful category. The biggest shortfall (and it's a big one in my opinion) with the other options... is that they don't offer Auto Focus for video. That's a big deal. What are your concerns with the codec?
     
  8. robbieduncan Moderator emeritus

    robbieduncan

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    #8
    Some DSLRs can autofocus whilst shooting video. A useful category might be "interchangeable lens cameras that can shoot HD video", misusing one name to mean something else is never a good idea.
     
  9. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

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    #9
    So catchy...just rolls right off the tongue! :p ;)
     
  10. rawdawg macrumors 6502

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    #10
    No offense, but the GH1 can in no way be described as the "ultimate" DSLR for video, not by a long shot and certainly not by professionals. That is simply not the case.

    In reality the ultimate is the Canon 1D Mark IV but the professional DSLR video craze is now at it's end. Everything will change by early next year. Glad I got my 5DmarkII when it first came out. It was fun while it lasted.

    For consumers and prosumers, sure the GH1 is fun, but no where near the better Canons. As for me, I'm not investing a single cent into any more DSLR gear.
     
  11. KeithPratt macrumors 6502a

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    #11
    Is it?
     
  12. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #12
    Really, because I've read quite different opinions by folks like David Bloom who said they were incredibly comparable. I've seen video from both cameras which look almost identical, and in many ways there seems to be a consensus that the GH1 hacked versions output better video than the Canons.

    More video samples from the new GH2:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oIKzXDthvks&feature=player_embedded
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ogy4gQWK5IU&feature=player_embedded
     
  13. peskaa macrumors 68020

    peskaa

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    #14
    Yeah, 60D.
    Massive difference between the 60D and 5D Mark II. There's also the fact that Canon have a much wider range of lenses available for creative control (ie: f/1.2 lenses, macro etc)
     
  14. acearchie macrumors 68040

    acearchie

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    #15
    Do you mean Philip Bloom? Just couldn't find any David Blooms linked with VDSLR!
     
  15. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #16
    Doesn't the Mark II cost like $3,000-$5,000? Not really the same thing. The GH2 is ~$1200. Also, I think you might have missed this quote from the article:





    Yes, oops! Thanks. ;)
     
  16. Keleko macrumors 68000

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    #17
    Heh... and I just ordered a 60D for myself tonight as my first DSLR! I was considering the GH2, but obviously I decided against it.

    Still, that's just one person's opinion. It is good to see that the GH2 is a good camera, too.
     
  17. peskaa macrumors 68020

    peskaa

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    #18
    UK pricing is £1650 right now, or $2500 in the US, so your guess is rather off the mark, but the Mark II is also full frame (opposed to 2x crop factor on the Panasonic) with better noise handling.

    I don't doubt video processing has moved along in the last 2 years, but it isn't the be all. The primary function of a dSLR is stills - with video being a lovely bonus when done well. Call me back when it goes full frame...
     
  18. fivepoint, Nov 30, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2010

    fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #19
    I'm not a photography expert by any means, so correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't 'full-frame' a rather meaningless term? Essentially, this just means the sensor is the same arbitrary size as an old 35mm camera.... so that the lens zoom numbers are consistent with what old-school photographers are used to. If the sensor is smaller than they simply say that a 65mm is more like an old 45mm or something like that. Also, wouldn't a full frame sensor also result in larger-bulkier bodies, larger-bulkier lenses? I suppose it also has the potential to pull in more light, but like the review says, cameras are generally limited by their processors and not their sensors in video... hence the reason the GH2 creates higher quality video than even the Mark II. Now, for photos... it might be exactly the opposite - but I have not seen any information to that effect and I'd say the GH2's video quality bodes well for it's still shot quality as well. Would the 'full-frame' of the Mark II indicate a change in DOF vs the GH2? I guess we'll just have to wait and see. I think Canon would 100% agree with your statement that the primary function of a dslr is photos with video being a bonus... but I think Panasonic might be on to something here, that video is becoming a bigger and bigger part of media going forward since everyone owns big screen TV's and the failing influence of print media while TV and web video continues to grow. Things in 10 years will look very different than today, that much is for sure.
     
  19. peskaa macrumors 68020

    peskaa

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    #20
    Full frame isn't a meaningless term in the slightest. You're correct that it is arbitrary, but it also helps in the areas of lens construction and image quality. Lenses get expensive the wider they go (ie: shorter focal lengths), especially when they're rectilinear (ie: not fisheye) and with as little distortion as possible.

    Having a 2x crop makes it even harder to hit those ultra-wides. Instead of being happy with 16mm, you have to go to 8mm and somehow stop it from distorting like crazy. It simply becomes expensive, and sometimes downright impossible. Of course, the crop factor "helps" with telephotos, but in my experience there's more value at the wide end of things.

    Full frame does also impact on DoF, but you generally have to be pixel-peeping to see it. The other big difference is down to the quality output - bigger, full frame, sensors have bigger photosites, which in turn leads to higher quality. Cramming 18MP onto a 4/3rds sensor is going to lead to various issues - Canon use things like microlenses to try and improve matters in this area, but the simple fact is that the crop cameras have inferior image quality to their full frame brethren.

    Yes, full frame cameras are slightly bigger - due to the viewfinder prism. My 5D Mark II is not much bigger than an other Canon xxD series camera, and certainly not enough to care about it. The bonus of having a massive, bright viewfinder is also a nice one. Lenses are not really any bigger from my knowledge, but then I use Canon's L-series which are not the smallest.

    Video is a growth area, but I'm also still not fully sold on it as being a prime camera selling tool. Everybody is still struggling with AF issues, and in general the market is moving very fast. The GH2 may have an excellent processing engine, but give it a few months and something else will be better. Plus, feedback from more than one site would be useful...
     
  20. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #21
    Thanks for the great information regarding 'full-frame'. I learned a lot.
    I'll be sure to post any info on GH2 still shot quality if I find any.
     
  21. Ruahrc macrumors 65816

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    #22
     
  22. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #23
    http://www.letsgodigital.org/en/camera/review/228/page_9.html
     
  23. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #24
    Part 2 of the EOSHD Review:
    http://www.eoshd.com/content/465-Canon-60D-versus-Panasonic-GH2-Full-Review-Part-2



    Phillip Bloom: http://philipbloom.net/2010/11/21/gh2/
     
  24. fivepoint, Dec 10, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2010

    fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #25
    Awesome Auto Focus Video Tracking Feature:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egMhFg2Kv1Y&feature=player_embedded#!



    Phillip Bloom just updated his "Which… “Video DSLR” to buy?" post.
    http://philipbloom.net/2010/12/07/whichdslr/

    Seems like it's at the top of the pack, unless you need 25p - at which point your SOL.


     

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