When Panasonic Launched the Lumix G5 last year, it was touted by many as the GH2.5, but even though the G5 is built around the same sensor that powers the highly celebrated Lumix GH2 and it’s updated Venus Image Processor considerably upped the sensor’s image capturing capabilities in still photos mode, the G5 lacked the manual controls, mic input and full array of video modes packed into the GH2. Enter the new Lumix G6, which is still loaded up with the same GH2 sensor, but it’s packing an even more advanced Venus Image Processor for faster autofocus and better low light performance, and the G6 also brings a much more robust video package to boot.
Will the release of the Panasonic Lumix G6 finally represent realization of the GH2 sensor’s full potential?
43Rumors posted a video (above) from one of their readers named Julian, who compared the capabilities of the GH2 vs the G6 in video mode. Although Youtube’s compression undoubtedly does this video little justice, I feel the video serves as a good reference when comparing the 2 cameras.
G6 vs GH2 – First Impressions (from video producer Julian)
“The G6 looks better to me. Better shadow detail and a bit more detail in the highlights. Probably due to the flatter picture style (contrast -5).
The G6 shares the picture styles with the GH3, so no smooth like on the GH2. Kept both camera’s on standard to keep it as close as possible. Everything dialed down maximum.
Less noise at high iso’s, less banding. Couldn’t detect any moire.
Looks a tad less sharp than (hacked) GH2, but that could be up to the sharpening at -5. With some sharpening probably same detail level.
Rolling shutter looks the same to me.” (Read article on 43Rumors)
My 2 Cents
I’ve personally been shooting with a Lumix GH2 and a Lumix G5 for several months now and I love them both, but for different reasons. I’m a video first shooter and was originally drawn to the GH2 because, well… it’s an incredible video making machine, and to this day, it’s still one of the best video cameras you can get. Although the GH2 takes great stills too, it’s a notch below most of the competition in that department and since I was looking to add more stills into my work as well, I picked up a G5, hoping that it might be an all in one solution.
The G5 delivers BIG in several areas vs. the GH2 – it takes great still photos, it’s easy to use, has better autofocus, performs better in low light, etc., but the GH2 has it all over the G5 when it comes to video. Don’t get me wrong, the Lumix G5 is a capable video shooter and produces great HD quality video. It’s one of the best hybrid cameras in the world right now (and at only $498 USD with a kit lens, it’s also one of the best deals around), but it lacks the GH2’s manual video controls, full array of video modes (i.e. – there’s no 24p mode), and mic input jack. Consequently, I’ve been using the G5 mostly for stills and the GH2 for video.
The Lumix G6 may finally represent the all in one camera for under $750 USD that many have been waiting for. If the G5 is a “GH2.5”, then the G6 is undoubtedly a “GH2.8” – it’s not quite a GH3, but I feel that the G6 is going to turn a lot of heads as it marks the return of manual control, a vast array of video modes, a mic input and wifi + NFC as well.
As for the video comparison above, I agree with Julian that the G6 footage generally looks better than the GH2’s. The footage is brighter, punchier, and the details are much more defined.
This may just be the world’s best mid-level hybrid camera.