Panasonic updates GH5 video powerhouse, teases GH6 flagship
Panasonic has pulled back the curtain on an updated version of its prosumer Micro Four Thirds video machine that blew us away back in 2017. The GH5M2 gets a new processor, improved autofocus, and enhanced image stabilization. The company also revealed that it's currently working on a new G Series flagship, the GH6.
The GH5 was launched at CES 2017, tempting professional videographers with 4K UHD video at 60p and Cinema 4K at 24p, 10-bit 4:2:2 color output to an external recorder over HDMI, dual image stabilization, fast autofocus, two slots for UHS-II SD media cards, and a durable chassis.
The Mark II features the same 20.3-MP Live MOS MFT sensor as its predecessor, but this time it comes with an anti-reflective coating to minimize ghosting and flaring. But the inclusion of a new Venus Engine image processor improves on the GH5's video chops, offering native recording of 4:2:0 10-bit 4K UHD or Cinema 4K at up to 60p, and simultaneous output to an external recorder over HDMI at 4:2:2 10-bit.
The camera's image stabilization system now offers up to 6.5 stops of compensation for smoother run-and-gun shooting, and autofocus performance has also been improved, with the new camera able to detect subject eyes and face faster than the GH5, while tracking AF gets a boost too.
When used with the Lumix Sync app, the Mark II is capable of live streaming indoors or outdoors at Full HD 60p. Wired live streaming is also possible using the Lumix Webcam Software utility, and a future firmware update will allow for wired IP streaming.
The Mark II has the same Bluetooth and Wi-Fi capabilities as before, and comes with dual SD car slots like its predecessor. But the new camera gets a bigger battery – 2,200 mAh compared to 1,860 mAh – and though the free-angle LCD display around back is a little smaller, at 3 inches, the resolution gets bumped to 1,840 dots.
The GH5M2 has a lower launch price than the GH5 too, and is currently up for pre-order, carrying a body only price of US$1,699.99 or bundled with a Leica 12-60mm F2.8 zoom lens for $2,299.99.
Panasonic has also announced that a new G Series flagship is in the works. Not too much is being given away at this point, but we do know that the GH6 will come with a new high-speed MFT sensor that's paired with the latest Venus Engine image processor.
It will boast internal 4:2:2 10-bit DCI 4K/60p video recording capabilities, offer unlimited recording if the camera stays within the "certified operating temperature," and 10-bit 4K UHD at 120p can be had at high or variable frame rates for dramatic slow motion action scenes. The new sensor is also reckoned to make 10-bit 5.7K video at 60p possible.
The company is aiming for commercial release by the end of 2021, and it will have some new glass to go with the new flagship, in the shape of a Leica DG 25-50mm F1.7 lens.
Product page: Lumix GH5M2