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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 12th, 2011, 11:56 AM   #1
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Lens for GH2 Run &Gun / Steady Cam / Track

I'm looking at getting a GH2 for my film work as I'm finding my Nikon D90 (great photo camera BTW) is just difficult to use For films without manual control (doable, but a pain).

So my plan would be to get a adapter to Nikon f-mount and Pentax and uses those lenses for most shooting, manual focus and all that.

However I would want one lens for shots where autofocus would be nice, such as:
Run & Gun
Steady cam shooting (can't touch the lens to focus)
And track shooting (when focus needs to be adjusted)

Ideally I would to only get one lens. Fast, sharp, wide (2x crop factor) would be nice, but so would a zoom lens allow more angles.

My last film I worked on I was using a 58mm at f1.2 as places were quite dark (inside of a broken airplane in the middle of a field) and generally will be so in the future (I only have a few lights and tend to be mobile).
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Old January 12th, 2011, 01:51 PM   #2
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I use the Oly 4/3rds 14mm-54mm 2.8-3.5. I like it a lot.
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Old January 12th, 2011, 02:29 PM   #3
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The only lenses that would fit your criteria of both fast and having AF would be the Pansonic 20mm f/1.7 lens and the upcoming Panasonic 25mm f/1.4 lens. The 20mm is fairly cheap ( about $300 US ), and the upcoming 25mm is expected to be in the $800+ range. Also, the 25mm is expected to have built-in optical image stabilization.
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Old January 12th, 2011, 02:42 PM   #4
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Either of the kit lenses will work well for run and gun applications. The auto focus is fast and very quiet. I fly my GH2/Merlin with the 14-140 kit lens and it works like a charm. Footage is clear and most of the footage is usable. There is some focus hunting, but it's pretty minor. That is why I picked the Gh2. i have a Merlin, slider, and crane in my bag of tricks. I didn't want to have my favorite toys become huge hassles every time I went to use them. Can you imagine flying a crane with manual focus? No thanks. I know there is gear you can buy that will allow for follow focus, but come on, I just want to pick up my camera and shoot. I don't want to have to hook up ten pieces of equipment, each of which cost more then the camera itself. But I digress.....

Get a stock lens, you won't hate them.

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Old January 12th, 2011, 04:44 PM   #5
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The kit lenses are slow though. The aforementioned Oly is fast and the AF still works in video and still mode.
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Old January 12th, 2011, 07:59 PM   #6
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How wide is wide?

The kit lenses would be great (though not very fast), but if you want something really wide for a steadicam then the 7-14 would be amazing.
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Old January 13th, 2011, 04:10 PM   #7
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I'm thinking along the lines of shooting with just the middle of the sensor, so wide would be good as I have that option to go quite long when using just the middle.
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Old January 14th, 2011, 12:00 AM   #8
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nevermind.
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Old January 15th, 2011, 09:19 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graeme Hay View Post
I'm thinking along the lines of shooting with just the middle of the sensor, so wide would be good as I have that option to go quite long when using just the middle.
Do you mean that you want to use this lens on the Steadicam using auto-focus with the sensor crop mode? There are a couple of caveats with that.

First, I don't know of any auto-focus lenses that are wide enough to still count as wide on the sensor crop mode.

If you use 16mm lenses (which, when paired with the sensor crop, can be fully utilized with minimal vignetting as far as I'm aware), you won't get auto-focus.

Also, the sensor crop mode, as I understand, requires far more light to get the same exposure as the full sensor. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, as I have done no testing on the matter.
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Old January 15th, 2011, 11:14 PM   #10
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I use the GH2 on a Merlin and the Auto focus works really well. As far as ETC mode, it's very different then crop mode. ETC only uses the middle of the sensor. This gives you a significant zoom with zero loss of quality. It's really amazing. Here is an article that explains it wa better then I ever could.

Panasonic GH2 1:1 Mode Revealed
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Old January 16th, 2011, 08:44 PM   #11
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Thanks for the input guys, its looking more and more like 20mm f/1.7 would be best.
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Old January 17th, 2011, 12:43 PM   #12
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In ETC mode the 20mm f/1.7 becomes a 50mm f/1.7, which has an equivalent FOV as a 100mm on a FF 35mm camera, so this lens can double as a portrait/interview lens using ETC mode.
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