Panasonic ups the ante with the Lumix GH5

Kishore Bhargava | Updated on January 12, 2018


This flagship from Panasonic will attract film-makers on a budget

The Lumix GH5 is the latest flagship from Panasonic. It’s a micro four thirds hybrid camera, which does both stills and video. With every generation, Panasonic ups the ante and improves the camera in many ways. The additions may be subtle and minor, but when put together, make a very big difference.

This time the GH5 concentrates more on the video rather than the stills, and is a very capable video shooter suitable for all, including professionals.

It’s quite a favourite among film-makers on a budget. With the increasing popularity of shooting videos in recent times, Panasonic is very much on the right rack with this camera.

Premium build

As is to be expected, the GH5 has a super build quality: it feels like a premium product and is very well built. In fact, it is quite large and solid for a micro four thirds and looks and feels more like a small compact DSLR. At 725 grams, it is as heavy as many other DSLRs.

A magnesium alloy body, which is splash-proof, dust-proof and even freeze-proof, makes the camera feels good in the hand.

Features for versatility

Compared with previous generations, the GH5 now has support for two high-speed card slots. These can be configured and used in a variety of ways. While shooting video, they do tend to fill up rather fast. The camera also sports a full size HDMI port, allowing you to connect the camera directly to a TV for tethered shooting or reviewing photos and videos. Another big change is the new electronic viewfinder (EVF). I am personally not a fan of EVF, but in the GH5, Panasonic has done a good job in trying to keep the view very life-like. I find the EVF a little over-saturated and bright but the best option for shooting stills.

For video, the articulating LCD panel provides much more flexibility. Wi-Fi is a must in most cameras these days, but here too Panasonic is pushing the limits with support of the 802.11ac standard at 5GHz for faster transfers. The camera covers the ground nicely for quick sharing and reviewing images while out in the field or on a shoot.

The kit comes with a Leica 12mm-60mm lens. With the changes in image processing, photo quality straight out of the camera is very impressive. Better handling of noise and ISO allows low-light images to pop. Where the GH5 really shines is in the video department. Crisp, stable video with excellent auto-focus and tracking at 4K is impressive. Improved audio capture lets you avoid use of external microphones. No wonder film-makers like this camera.

Overall, the camera is great for photographers and videographers. But in the stills department there are better options available in the market, and given the price of this camera, still photographers may look elsewhere if they’re not at all interested in video.

Price: ₹1,43,990 (body only) & ₹1,88,990 (kit with 12-60 mm F2.8-4.0)

Pros: Great video, solid weather-sealed body

Cons: Large for a micro four thirds, AF performance can be improved, expensive.

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Published on June 28, 2017
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