GH2 hacked!

As many of you know the GH1 is a nice camera that was handicapped by a number of key things, lack of native 24p/25p recording and terrible low bit rate. The hacker formally known as Tester 13, Vitaliy_Kiselev took the GH1 firmware and turned it into a formidable beast, giving us longer record times, higher bit rates and native recording. Those cameras are often referred to as GH13.

Well many of us, including myself have been waiting for Vitaliy to crack the firmware of the GH2 and he has now done it. It’s very early days so I would certainly recommend holding off for the time being (and to be totally safe never install it!) but if you want to you will now be able to record longer than 29 minutes 59 seconds. You can record in MJPEG. The PAL/ NTSC switch works.

Stuff like higher bit rates and native 25p recording are there buy glitchy so give it a chance.

I adore my GH2, I recently shot a piece with it and I was reminded just how stunning the image out it is. When this patch gets to full steam we will have a beast of a camera for not a lot of money.

Go to Vitaliy’s page and if you do download please donate to him to help him fund all the hard work he is doing!

I will install this in my GH2 in about 2 or 3 version times if that gives you any help as to whether you should!


  1. Fantastic. I bought the GH2 with this in mind. It didn’t hinge on my decision (as it was never assured it would be possible), but I am very glad this was done. Can’t wait to try it out… in a few revisions.

  2. Hi Philip,

    The North American version (Canada at least, and this is the last batch that arrived in May 2011) already has unlimited record time, and native 24p, and it can record AVCHD or MJPEG, plus uncompressed hdmi out. The image quality is stunning so aside from higher bit rates there probably isn’t a good reason to install the hack. Is there something I’ve missed?

  3. It’s a great accomplishment, for those with Japanese menus this will turn them into other languages except Chinese characters.

    It will take a few weeks to get stable hi bit rate settings but it seems 60p and 50p at 1080 will be possible. This is probably going to surpass the bit rate of the AF100/101. The GH2 already has better moire and aliasing control See this link: than the AF100 so this will be the best value in DSLRs until maybe Canon comes up with better everything releases.

  4. Amazing.
    Love my GH13. Didn’t buy the GH2 due to lack of 25p native.
    Keep us posted on stability. I’ll probably get the GH2 if 25 becomes a reality.

  5. Who want this camera? 🙂 Canon is the best now for filming…

    Get a 60D or 550D and Magiclatern, then u will rock. I Love my 5D MKII i will never take another cam….

    my 50 cent

  6. Great news! I’ve been tracking Vitaly’s progress on this since I traded in my GH13 for the GH2.

    Definitely looking for 1080/60p and higher bit rates. Would definitely make this camera a beast

  7. Yes, I can’t wait until this progresses further! I’ll have a nice donation for Vitaliy soon.

    When do we get to see your new GH2 video?

  8. Ive seen some footage on vimeo and I was impressed. Quite a camera. It seems better than the 5d. from my point of view. Does the camera overheating in these condition?

  9. Hi, great news …
    I have GH2 (not hacked yet …)
    Please Philip, what are the best manual settings for GH2 to use as a film camera ?
    I can not get nice smooth motion … (except when using P mode)
    The Cinema 24p mode is not that great …
    I’m using a 20mm 1.7 pancake.

    Thank you

  10. Just a quick question: Does this Pal to NTSC switch mean that it will now enable European users shoot 720p/60p instead of 720p/50p? If so, that alone is a great upgrade esp when u do slow motion twixtoring!

  11. HAcked GH2 is awesome! Getting very high bit rates around 72Mbps using Kae’s setB settings on Cinema 24H mode. Plus you can record as long as you like now the 30 min legnth has been cracked. Better bit rates really show in motion like pans and movement. 🙂

  12. So dear Philip,

    What is the best for picture quality (colors, resolution, moire…) ?

    5D MKII or GH2 cracked ???

    Is GH2 good enough for broadcast ???

    Thanks a lot !


  13. I have been a 60d owner for about 9 months now, and am looking at purchasing a pair of GH2’s for use in event-filmmaking. Anyone who has used both care to comment on the build quality of the GH2 vs 60d? The image out of both is fantastic, but my 60d is starting to show noticeable wear-and-tear from 9 months shooting on it now.

  14. Philip,
    I own a 7D, and was thinking of trading in for a GH2 anticipating a relatively reliable hack from Vitaliy_Kiselev. But when I look at the numbers, they don’t seem that different. What I mean is, the 7D records 330MB per minute in 1080p 24fps. That’s 5.5MB/sec or 44 Mb/sec. The GH2 hack promises 50Mb/sec. So 50 vs 44, no big deal? But looking at the footage you linked to, it looks cleaner than any 7D footage I’ve seen. Can you clarify?

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