Specs which impress…the full details of the Panasonic GH5 are revealed


At Photokina last September, Panasonic announced a few details of their upcoming GH5 and said to expect it around the summer of 2017. Thanks to a CES press conference that has just happened in Las Vegas, we now have a release date of late March and the full specs, and oh my do they look impressive!

The sensor is still Micro Four Thirds, with all their lenses that was never going to change. What they have done, though, is clearly make this a mirrorless stills cameras whose primary function is high quality video. This is what we have:

New 20.3 megapixel sensor

  • 20.3 Megapixel sensor
  • 5-axis in-body image stabilisation system with DUAL IS image stabilisation
  • All 4K footage taken using full width of sensor (better than the crop of the GH4 sensor in 4K mode)
  • Internal 4K/30p 10-bit 4:2:2 
  • 4K/59.94p and 50p shooting with 10-bit 4:2:2 external output or 8-bit, 4:2:0 internal at 150Mbps IPB (two firmware upgrades in April and the summer will bring 10bit HD 4:2:2 recording and DCI/UHD 4K 4:2:2 10-bit recording at 400Mbps internally, and 1080/60p 4:2:2 10-bit recording at 200Mbps, all using All-I. Anamorphic support coming then, too.
  • 1080 video at up to 180p (Very impressive)
  • 9 fps shooting with continuous autofocus
  • Advanced DFD autofocus  (I haven’t found out more about video autofocus but it has tracking and speed adjustments, I don’t know if it has phase detection or just used this DFD mode)
  • Dual SD card slots 
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth
  • Pre-config rack focus mode
  • Waveform and vectorscope monitors
  • No record time limits
  • Paid upgrade to for V-Log video capture with preview display using luts
  • It uses the same excellent GH4 batteries
  • The body is about 12% bigger
  • Price is around $2000

    GH5 Firmware release schedule 

    4:2:2 10bit – Available April, 2017
    6K/24p Anamorphic Video Mode (4:3) – Available Summer, 2017
    (200 Mbps) FHD 4:2:2 10bit ALL-Intra – Available Summer, 2017
    (400Mbps) 4K 4:2:2 10bit ALL-Intra – Available, Summer 2017

    V-Log Color Profile  – Available at launch, Cost: $100

There is also a 6K 30fps photo mode feature. This records “video” at a super widescreen 6000×300 to grab 18mp stills. It also does a 4K one at 60fps.

As specs go, these are incredibly impressive, especially 10-bit internal recording in 4K 4:2:2 up to 30p, which is going to be increased to 60p in a firmware upgrade. No other camera manufacturer are offering these sort of specs in a camera like this or at this price. Oh the price…yes it is much more expensive than the GH4 at $1999, but my god you are getting a lot for your money.

The 2nd video above is shot in 4K 60p…as in normal speed, not using it for slow motion. For most this will not be how it is used, as it looks too “TV”

Will this camera tempt people away from the Sony line? Maybe…the sensor size is the issue still, but of course with a Metabones Speedbooster you get can a Super 35mm field of view and even wider with the XL version. The key thing will be getting to shoot with it. Until then, it is an impressive list of specs. Hopefully I will get to shoot with it soon….but that may not be until it is released and I buy one!

The GH4 was a very good camera (you can check out my epic video review below), but when the A7S came out I fell in love with it and now with the much better A7SII and A7RII with their full frame goodness, a competitor has to be pretty special to pull people away from Sony. Canon utterly screwed up with the video on the 5D MKIV and its crazy 1.74x crop in 4K amongst many other faults.  I adore my 1DX MKII (with a 1.3x crop) but it is expensive.

Panasonic could be onto a winner here in the indie sector and maybe further. 10-bit capture internally with no time limits? If it is good, expect these to be used as extra cameras on big shoots.

Roll on March! Over to you Sony, you better make that A7S III have specs to at least equal this! That is a big ask!

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