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Panasonic LUMIX G / GF / GH / GX Series
4K and AVCHD on a Micro Four Thirds system camera with interchangeable lenses.


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Old January 1st, 2011, 06:52 PM   #1
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GH1 or upgrade to GH2

I've seen a few discussions about this but wanted a clean thread for current opinions. I've just bought a GH1 from ebay (hacked and all seems good) but have not had the time to really experiment with it much. Clearly the possibilities in regard to depth of field are exciting and an amazing film making advance for an experienced user.

I have the opportunity to get a GH2 as I have a bit of cash coming. Should I bother upgrading or stick with the hacked GH1? I'd have spent more time with the GH1 but have many demands on my time, and haven't even got over the workflow issues with AVCHD on my mac yet. But I can see in camera that its awesome.

What would you do?

Thanks
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Old January 2nd, 2011, 07:06 AM   #2
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Generally I'd say it was time for an upgrade when the current kit you own is actually impeding you - physically stopping you getting the sort of shots / sharpness./ audio / dof that you're after. And I always reckon an upgrade should be a leap-frog, not a stepping stone.

So I can't imagine that the GH2 would make you a better filmmaker in any way, or make you better films in any way. The leapfrog would be to the 5D2, in the same way as owing a 35mm lens and buying a 28mm lens a stepping stone - you need a 20mm lens as an upgrade.

tom.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 12:57 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Tom Hardwick View Post
The leapfrog would be to the 5D2, in the same way as owing a 35mm lens and buying a 28mm lens a stepping stone - you need a 20mm lens as an upgrade.
I disagree with that. To me the GH2 is the best DSLR for video. The 5d is significant because it started the movement but its feature set is more restrictive than the GH2. Also, the GH2 produces a superior image.

As to the GH13, if you're doing narrative work, the GH2 has monitoring, I don't the GH13 does, that right there gives it an advantage.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 10:14 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Brian Luce View Post
To me the GH2 is the best DSLR for video.
It's important to understand that the GH2 is *not* a DSLR. It does not have
a through-the-lens optical viewfinder, therefore it is not a single lens reflex
camera. The distinction is critical.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 10:44 AM   #5
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Thanks Chris, thanks all.

Update: I have just sold a camcorder on ebay and used the cash to buy a new GH2 on amazon, plus a further 3 batteries from elsewhere. In the UK the tax rate goes up tomorrow to 20% from 17.5% so I felt a pressure to buy it today which helped with my decision.

It is for monitoring reasons that I have been considering the GH2 Brian, so thanks for bringing that up. I am a film maker, and have just finished my first feature film which I've even been able to get to cinema believe it or not. That film (Fast Romance, a romantic comedy) suffers from the restriction of having been shot on a JVC HDY251e with only one lens, and although it has come together well it pains me to think of how much better it could have been if we'd had a little more money to get improved and varied equipment in.

The GH2 is not my weapon of choice to shoot a feature film on but it is a terrific advancement for depth of field reasons from any other camera that I have ever owned and used (recently bought GH1 aside).

If theres not a thread already up I'll start a thread shortly about sound setups and add ons (juicedlink, beachtek etc.) for the GH2 as good sound recording is still the main problem I face when shooting a film.

This GH2 will be used personally by me for pre shoot tests and "fun" / development shoots - can't wait!

Thanks for responding

Carter Ferguson (My equity allocated business name)
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Last edited by David Carter; January 3rd, 2011 at 10:46 AM. Reason: clarification
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 11:02 AM   #6
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off topic: I sure like that black-and-white, David! Cheers,
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 12:19 PM   #7
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If theres not a thread already up I'll start a thread shortly about sound setups and add ons (juicedlink, beachtek etc.) for the GH2 as good sound recording is still the main problem I face when shooting a film.
Yeah, I agree with Bruce on this one. First, the live view HDMI out on the 5D2 is a real problem, as it is on all of the Canons other than the 7D, for critical focusing. And for the cost of that Small DP1x or whatever their LCD model is that upconverts the HDMI out from the Canons, you can buy a GH2 body that already gives you full 1920x1080 rez over HDMI and maintains simultaneous output to the LCD and EVF.

Also, if you shoot wide open @ 1.4 - 2.8 like we do all the time at indoor events, then focus on full frame cams becomes pretty much an impossibility on anything other than very well rehearsed shots - so forget run and gun stuff.

Lastly, obtaining very high quality location sound won't be a problem if you don't mind sync'ing sound in post - just pick up the very excellent Tascam DR-680 and you'll be all set.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 12:32 PM   #8
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Hi Aaran thanks for that. Synching location sound is my least favourite pastime. Also I am trying to build a kit that I can operate on my own, and to a budget so the mixer option although I understand why you say it is not a path I would choose to tread. I'm thinking preamps or if post synch is the only way, smaller handheld recorders such as the sony PCM-M10 or olympus is it ls10 or 11?

I'll start another thread about this though as it's a bit off topic and perhaps is brushing against forum rules a little. I'll start one shortly.

cheers
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 03:46 PM   #9
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don't mix with the 680, just use it as an 8-track bit bucket (multitracker) - there's no need to mix on location with it. mixing is always best left for post in the studio. with eight discrete tracks, you shouldn't need to downmix on site.
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Old January 3rd, 2011, 03:48 PM   #10
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Thats a very expensive option Aaron I could buy another GH2 for less than that lol! I started another thread about sound. Feel free to pitch in!
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Old January 4th, 2011, 02:03 AM   #11
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Thats a very expensive option Aaron I could buy another GH2 for less than that lol! I started another thread about sound. Feel free to pitch in!
If you're using your GH2 for test footage and off the books stuff, I agree that sync sound won't be worth the effort. The good news is, at least compared to the Canon 7d, the GH2 is much improved in the sound department. That's a relative statement of course as the 7d must have the worst sound ever. But the GH2 at least has some signal bars, (menu based) level control, and a few filters. No XLR of course but it's a big improvement.

People have gotten good results with Juicedlink. I think SD make a inexpensive one channel pream that could probably bolt to the something on or near the camera -- not sure what it'd take to adapt it to a GH2.

On the subject of monitoring via hdmi, it works great but, no audio on your hdmi. Generally, so far, the GH2's hdmi is arguably the area most in need of the Russian's hacking skills. One problem is the monitor isn't wysiwyg until you hit record -- this is why a lot of the footage we're seeing hitting vimeo looks slightly underexposed. People aren't using the GH2's light meter or zebra equivalent or its histogram -- they're just using the lcd in STANDBY, which is about a half stop brighter than what the camera will record. Then the hdmi sends out a 60i signal, not the standard 59.XX which creates just enough havoc to make recording a 4.2.2 signal to Nanoflash NOT viable. Then there's the aforementioned audio issue.

And my bad about calling the gh2 a dslr. The VF is purely electronic, but it works great -- easy to focus.
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Old January 5th, 2011, 01:46 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Hurd View Post
It's important to understand that the GH2 is *not* a DSLR. It does not have
a through-the-lens optical viewfinder, therefore it is not a single lens reflex
camera. The distinction is critical.
The GH2 is an EVIL camera....Electronic Viewfinder Interchangeable Lens.
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