Tuesday August 10, 2021

How Panasonic Made GH5 Mark II More Dynamic

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According to data on Photons to Photos, while the Panasonic GH5 Mark II uses the same sensor as the previous GH5, the company has somehow managed to squeeze even more dynamic range out of it and notably surpassing the original GH5.

As spotted by 43Rumors, from data derived from DXOMark’s Photographic Dynamic Range Chart, Photons to Photos shows that the GH5 II offers a notable bump in performance over the original GH5, which may be surprising considering that the sensor found in the camera is no different than the one in the original GH5.

Key Specifications Panasonic GH5 Mark II

  • UHD or DCI 4K 10-bit 4:2:0 capture at up to 60p with no crop
  • UHD or DCI 4K 10-bit 4:2:2 capture at up to 30p with no crop
  • Image stabilization rated at up to 6.5 stops
  • V-Log L included as standard
  • 3.0″ 1.84M-dot rear touchscreen
  • 3.68M-dot EVF, with 0.76x magnification and up to 120Hz refresh
  • Live streaming options via Wi-Fi or smartphone (Full HD)
  • Anamorphic capture and support tools
  • Improved AF with face/eye/body detection
  • USB-C socket with PD-compatible power and charging

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Panasonic GH5 Mark II Improvements

In the first leaks of the GH5 II, fans were disappointed to find what appeared to be nearly nothing new in the specifications sheet. However, when the camera launched it was revealed that while the GH5 Mark II at first seemed to be a rehash of the original, it offered several new features.

First, the on-sensor image stabilization jumped from 5 stops to 6.5 stops, the autofocus algorithms were improved. The rear LCD resolution were improved, and multiple new recording options were added thanks to the latest image-processing Venus Engine.

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There’s also a kit that comes with a 12-60mm f/2.8-4 image-stabilized lens for $2,300. Image: Panasonic

Panasonic GH5 Mark II Additional Improvements

The color profiles have also gotten a revamp in the Mark II, with the camera including Cinelike D2 and V2 profiles. It also includes the V-Log L profile for free, which was previously a $100 upgrade to the GH5. In addition to the improved color, the sensor (which is the same as the one found in the GH5) has also gotten an anti-reflective coating. This is done to avoid unwanted lens flares, and Panasonic claims it has 25 percent wider dynamic range.

The Mark II also has some creature comfort improvements and really nerdy additions. The rear LCD is both higher-resolution and brighter. The USB-C port is now compatible with the Power Delivery standard so it can run the camera and trickle-charge the batteries at the same time. It also takes higher-capacity batteries, though the older batteries the GH5 used will still work in the camera, and vice versa. There’s also now the option to add a red border around the screen when recording. It also has the ability to have two levels of zebra patterns to help determine exposure.

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Panasonic says the screen is 1.5 times brighter. Image: Panasonic

Price of the Camera

While the details on the GH6 were light, we got a very good look at the GH5 Mark II. It’s, as the name implies, an improved version of the GH5. Panasonic’s idea for it seems to be that it’s built to serve people who aren’t looking to spend $2,500 on a GH6 but want something more capable than a G7 or older GH4. When the GH5 originally launched it was $2,000, so it seems like Panasonic is trying to split the difference with the Mark II and GH6, offering cameras on both sides.

Our Verdict

If you’re looking for a well-built, lightweight mirrorless camera with excellent handling, a fantastic range of video shooting options and solid stills performance, the GH5 Mark II his well worth a look. The GH5 was already a great choice, and the tweaks here just make it all the more appealing. If you own the original GH5, though, the GH5 Mark II seems slightly redundant. Aside from minor performance upgrades and the addition of live streaming, it’s largely unchanged. Unless you really need that live-streaming functionality, you’re better off waiting for the Panasonic GH6.

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