Fred: How's AF in video with this camera. I llke the video in my 5D but the lack of af and articulated screen makes it almost useless to me. Despite I don't like the shape and volume of the GH2 I'm considering it for personal and creative videos. Is it a good camera for time-lapse? I truly hate the idea of wearing my 5D2 cause it's my everyday professional workhorse. Comments?
I have never worked so far with AF on it, only manual primes so I can't comment on that point.
My general sensation is very positive. I would preferably use this camera over the 5D2 and even the 7D for videos, for many reasons.
There is a simple fact that tells a lot about a camera: more I'm using it, more I want to use it.
I also had many concern about the size-shape. My first sensation in hand was: it feels cheap and the body's too small.
Curiously, after a few days, that feeling completly disappeared. Now it feels ok. The buttons placement are IMO superior to the 5D2 and I never experienced
what was my fear, to press wrong buttons because of this tiny design. It just right and I wish more dslrs would copy this design.
The mount is extremely versatile but, the essence of the camera is keep it small. I've been trying heavy cine lenses on it and it is weired. It gives the sensation that
the mount could break (of course it does not) because of the unbalanced size and weight. No, its nature has more to do with Leica M kind of lenses and not PL mount monsters.
Mounting Leica M 39mm screw, you can shoot with longuer focal handheld because the compacness of the lenses makes it possible while with the 5D2 it is impossible.
I would say that I'm trying to use the smallest possible lenses on it to keep this spirit.
On the other hand, manual following focus ia maybe more difficult because precisely of this companess. You gain on one side and loose on the other but all is a matter of practise with any equipment.
The EVF is really great. It's to the point that I have very little desire to use a traditional dslr anymore
. Under very low light conditions, the EVF resolution falls apart to the point of not usable but I've experienced that 2 or 3 times
and it was almost in extreme low-light. No issue in 99% of the cases.
Make sure that the optical correction is spot-on and you're done. It is that good that it completly change the way shooting motion. It's like a Leica M of motion
. Really. Instead of using the LCD screen,
I'm using the EVF like if it was a street camera, so I got my eyes constantly on it and as the design is really good my fingers are falling naturaly where they should and I control everything without having to look.
The EVF is so accurate that I keep my eyes at about 2cm from the viewfinder and not glued on it.
The lcd screen on the opposite is not great and lacks resolution.
I've brought it in a still session just to see. I've used it with a non-professional model, a friend of us (I was with another photographer) who wanted to experience to be in a model skin for awhile. I've posted some pics of a raw right-out-the-box in another section.
The girl played the game and after awhile she started to get it. So as the GH2. No it's not a 5D2 but considering the sensor's size it is damn good and we wouldn't have dreamed about that just a few years ago, Pana did a very good job.
My bigger surprise was to see that I had much more focussed picture that I would normally have working without AF in any dslr or MF. In other words, the manual focussing with this camera is really accurate and possible, but it's more critical to settle properly the viewfinder to your eyes. Some users may experienced the opposite. Now again...if you MF with pana AF lenses you won't get the accuracy you have with a proper manual prime like a Leica or Zeiss. Those modern lenses are too unprecise for manual focussing and their feeling in hand in crap and cheap.
With the radio trigger, there is just a little issue, is that if you want to use it as a receiver, the micro jack is not to the standard wich oblige to look for an adapter. Annoying but I don't care because I rarely use as a receiver.
But it drives me to your other question: if you want to do timelapse, make sure you get the right cable!
There is a possibility to shoot 4K at 40ftps, great, but no. Because you are limited on the time, it works for a second. Too bad but despite its limited use it can add something to a sport footage for ex.
Video quality is very good. It does not have the Canon's moiré and really I would choose this camera over the 5D2 without the shade of a doubt. And I'm not the only one! It actually happens.
The only problem is that on set it does not look pro! But you can add all the robocop circus to look like Georges Lucas. But with this camera, I'm not tempted because again, it's the Leica M of motion and it would be too bad
to add weight and so on.
On that, the spirit is to use ND screw filters. I don't like them but using a matte-box seems to me the opposite of the spirit. So I ended not using anything wich obliges me to take care a lot about the external natural light and adapt rather
than choose. If no option I would use a matte-box.
The HDMI connection is not ideal, but understandable because of the camera size. This HDMI and micro silly jack is keeping some gaffer with you and stick the cables because indeed that's not reliable.
I've been comparing while editing in Avid, footage from the GH2 and the 5D2 and each time the quality of the GH2 appeared to me superior, and other people I've been asked their opinions felt the same.
Anyway, probably the best purchase I've ever done since the 5D2. And really, if the still was a little bit higher, I would have sold today the Canon's
. (and I'm still asking myself if I shouldn't). It's that good IMO.
For 700 euros the best bang-for-the-buck!!