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Andrew Reid

Will we see a new professional Panasonic GH-series camera at NAB?

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Why should NAB bring another filming m43 camera from Panasonic? They basically put everything a true hybrid should offer into the GH3  ;)  At least I hope they don´t canonize their portfolio and offer a moire free 422 GHX at double the GH3 price..

 

But the NEED to gain ground in the larger sensor segment, being the first into this game with the AF100, doesn´t count much these days (think BMCC).

Also, although GHX sound nice, Panasonic has a much better brand name to revibe: VARICAM.

So for me the obvious contender to take on at NAB is the FS700. 

This price range is also perfect for taking on the C300...

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I would add to the list the ability to switch the sensor to record in the 4:3 aspect ratio. This would make a lot of anamorphic shooters very happy. So would 10bit 422, more DR, and an ND wheel.

 

Fingers crossed for a Panasonic announcement at NAB

 

variable aspect ratios would be really cool. i just hope the price doesn't become too astronomical. part of what i liked about the gh1/2 and even 3 was the price. as long as they have a decent product in the $1-2k range, i'll make the upgrade from my gh2.

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I would add to the list the ability to switch the sensor to record in the 4:3 aspect ratio. This would make a lot of anamorphic shooters very happy. So would 10bit 422, more DR, and an ND wheel.

 

Fingers crossed for a Panasonic announcement at NAB

 

Good point about anamorphic. Popular shooting format, yet no support on all the main digital cinema cameras or DSLRs (aside from Alexa Studio). It's bizarre. I've seen mega-budget music videos shot in 3.55:1 because even they couldn't get a 4:3 chip!

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It's my opinion that one of Panasonic's biggest advantages it has had over all its competitors in this "HDSLR revolution" is their lower price yet equal (or better) quality products.  If they were to enter a product in this "high-end" $10,000 price range I think it would lose a lot of their current fan base,  which is really why I think the AF100 failed.  What I've loved about Panasonic is that I truly believe they try to give me everything they can for half the price of everyone else.

 

They will have a lot of trouble trying to convince EOS Cinema or FS owners to switch this late in the game, so they need the support of their current fan base to gain traction and succeed in this new territory.  I suspect the current GH consumer base will only extent to the price range of the 5D3 and BMCC, which is $3,000, and it needs to properly compete against these (let's face it) better cameras.  It will need to compete with the 5D's amazing low-light performance as well as BMCC's amazing latitude and detail quality.  These cameras also have weaknesses to exploit, such as the 5D's relatively poor image quality (even with 4:2:2 8bit coming) and the BMCC's horrid ergonomic designs.

 

The only solution I see for Panasonic to compete with their m4/3 mount is a new 8MP 1080p m4/3 sensor.  This would increase the low-light performance and dynamic range (the two major weaknesses of m4/3), it is the most essential upgrade for any GH product above the GH3.  If Panasonic just re-released the GH3 but with an 8MP m4/3 and called it new I would happily pay $2,600 (double the price) for that right now.  I'm already pretty happy with the GH3's internal codec options but they could use a higher quality 1080p60 and of course I would also like a recordable 4:2:2 10bit HDMI out to better compete with the BMCC's 12bit raw.  Any "GHish" model priced higher then this would need to be like a mini EOS C100; the same features as mentioned before but with a superior ergonomic design and NDs (like the EOS C models but smaller and lighter) and should cost around $3,500 in my opinion.  After these "high-end m4/3" camera's become a hit (which I'm pretty sure they would) then they can start tackling the $10,000 4K lossless cinema cameras.

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I suspect the current GH consumer base will only extent to the price range of the 5D3 and BMCC, which is $3,000, and it needs to properly compete against these (let's face it) better cameras.  It will need to compete with the 5D's amazing low-light performance as well as BMCC's amazing latitude and detail quality.

 

Yes, I believe what BMCC announces at this NAB will be the benchmark for those of us with GH2-3s looking for the next solid camera platform to work from for the next couple of years. If Panasonic makes an announcement in this area the comparisons (which we will probably read here, thanks to Andrew) will be very interesting.

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I think it's fair to say that we could at least expect a 1.86x crop in video mode, right?

 

What really stroke me with the GH3 is the fact that although it had lots of improvements a big part of the GH-series DNA was gone. The Panasonic-designed-multi-aspect-ratio sensor.

 

Those interesting patent from Panasonic could be handy here, it would improve DR and ISO, I think that as a video-designed camera, 8MP would be plenty for a 4K video, maybe even 12MP for some photography matters, but I'm not sure 16MP is really needed.

 

Let's hope they can come up with something interesting, Canon got too comfortable and unfortunately, they are not pushing the technology forward, I really dislike this kind of posture, well, let's see if others can capitalize on that.

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I believe what BMCC announces at this NAB will be the benchmark for those of us with GH2-3s looking for the next solid camera platform to work from for the next couple of years.

 

I'd be very surprised if BM announce anything new, camera wise.

 

People who stayed patient with BM would be unhappy with a better spec'd camera being announced and the possibility of further delays and pre-order chaos..... Everyone else will just think they are full of shit to announce another camera with the BMCC still massively in limbo.

 

It's a real shame... Maybe they will turn up with 10,000 BMCs.... Here's hoping.

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Yes, I am very excited about Panasonic's new light splitters but I would be surprised if it's ready to be used in an upcoming model.  

 

"UHD 4K" (which is actually just under 4K) in a 16:9 ratio is already 8.29 megapixels but they could pixel bind that sensor in 2x2 blocks for a clean 1080p image and still retain the ability to produce printable photos.

 

I think RobertoSF means BlackMagic might release/start shipping the BMCC with the micro four thirds mount at NAB which would start to directly compete against the GH line.  This supports the rumor that Panasonic will be releasing a "higher-end" GH product to stay competitive.  

 

Like I said before, I just hope their pricing stays conservative; all I need is an 8.29mp GH3.

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The good folks over at DVXuser, some of whom are affiliated with Panasonic, have not made any mention of a GH-C/GH-X that I have seen (though there is some speculation that Panasonic's 4K Varicam will debut). If one was to go on what they have been talking about for the past couple of weeks, Go-Pro is the most likely to release a new cine camera.

 

Of course, the only people who really know anything are under NDAs until the show.

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The main issue with both Canon and Panasonic had always been tryoing to balance the Photographic and the Video capability upon the hardwre. A GH-X highly optimized for Cine / Video with Panny's own sensor would be very welcomed. But I would say the Mfr also need to take that sensor and apply it to a photographic platform as well ( perhaps the GX-2 ). The GH3 is sort of like Canon 5D-III, trying to be good t for both and turning out that bit wanting ( if I am just a photographer, I might just as well get the Olympus E-M5 or the Nikon D800E , and if I am Videographer I might be tempted to stick to a hacked GH2 or getting the BMCC or even the NEX VGs )

 

Other than tht stated ND FILTER / articulated screen , I say there's need to be a retjink of some of the control ergonomics and both Canon and Panasonic are guilty of being too conservative. Personally I really like the AF control / focus wheel aka camcorder style as implemented by Sony on the A99, and their tri-navi on the NEX-7 are pretty nice.

 

The greatest mystery right now is the sensor ...

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I'm speculating we'll get more of the same from the major camera manufacturers.  8 bit video, compressed codecs and no raw cameras.  Canon will continue to charge "rape me" prices for their over hyped & under performing units badged with a "C." I haven't seen any evidence to suggest otherwise.

 

Hopefully the Digital Bolex crew can get a working camera ready for NAB.

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GHX 200 (competing with Sony FS100):

 

camcorder style (bit smaller than FS100)

separate in-body zoom controls for X-lenses

lowlight king with panasonic developed 2 or 2.5K multiaspect sensor

10 Bit 4:2:2

S-LOG

built-in NDs

best in class 6.400 ISO shooting with low noise level

12.800 extended ISO

2000 dollar body

500 professional audio add-on

500 ssd recording add-on 

500 extended batteriy add-on with output for 3rd party peripherals

 

 

GHX 800 (competing with Sony FS700):

 

camcorder style (bit smaller than FS700)

separate in-body zoom controls for X-lenses

with panasonic developed 4 or 4.5K multiaspect sensor

10 Bit 4:2:2

S-LOG

true in camera 4K recording

built-in NDs

6.400 ISO shooting with low noise level

12.800 extended ISO

3.000 dollar body

700 professional audio add-on

700 double ssd recording add-on 

700 extended battery add-on with output for 3rd party peripherals

 

 

 

Varicam 1000 (competing with Sony F55):

 

camcorder style (smaller than F55)

separate in-body zoom controls for X-lenses

with panasonic developed 4 or 4.5K multiaspect sensor

true in camera 4K recording

 

13 stops DR

12 Bit 4:4:4 

RAW (with in-camera playback and file deletion)

built-in NDs

6.400 ISO shooting with low noise level

12.800 extended ISO

5.000 dollar body

1000 professional audio add-on with dual level backup-recording

1000 hot-swap double ssd recording add-on 

1000 extended battery add-on with output for 3rd party peripherals

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The main issue with both Canon and Panasonic had always been tryoing to balance the Photographic and the Video capability upon the hardwre.

That shouldn't be as much of an issue with 4K video. Optimize the OLPF for still and use the whole sensor at video speeds, with the extra pixels devoted to oversampling. The technology should be there to do that -- or would be, if Panasonic (or any other manufacturer, for that matter) had the will.

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