New Panasonic GH4 firmware 2.1 update available

GH4 with Cooke cinema lens

Panasonic have today released V2.1 firmware for the GH4. This gives us timecode and recording start/stop triggering over HDMI to Atomos devices such as the Shogun 4K recorder. The firmware also adds a few other features, read on to find out what they are…

The GH4 has been well looked after by Panasonic since release with some major firmware updates. Great to see. V2.1 released 26th Jan ’15 contains 4 new features –

1. Time code can be embedded to the HDMI output signal.
Selectable in Motion Picture menu : [Time Code]>[HDMI Time Code Output]

2. RSS (Recording Start/Stop) signal can be embedded to the HDMI output signal.
Selectable in Motion Picture menu : [HDMI Rec Output]>[HDMI Recording Control] *

3. FHD at 30p/25p native output via HDMI is available while recording video in FHD at 30p/25p.
Selectable in Motion Picture menu : [HDMI Rec Output]>[1080/30p Set.] or [1080/25p Set.]

4. Playback performance of recorded 4K video is improved.

5. [Time Lapse Shot] Program is fixed to start recording at the designated time even when [summer time]is set.

* Available when DMC-GH4 or DMW-YAGH are connected with the products of ATOMOS Global Pty. Ltd. or the products complying with the extended specifications of ATOMOS Global Pty. Ltd..

The new firmware can be downloaded at Panasonic here.

10bit 1080/25p via HDMI is a welcome addition for PAL region 1080p shooters who want a quick non-4K workflow to ProRes for broadcast / commercial work.

Hopefully the next firmware will add V-LOG and an anamorphic branch of the 4K Photo Mode which could be called “4K Anamorphic” which gives us the same 4:3 or 3:2 recording in 4K with the higher vertical resolutions as in Photo Mode but with 24p and a squeezed live-view display for the correct aspect ratio when shooting with 1.33x,1.5x or 2x anamorphic lenses. I know people high up in Panasonic are pushing for it, as it would be a very popular feature for filmmakers. For my upcoming review of the Kinefinity KineMINI 4K camera, I found that camera already has an anamorphic mode just like I describe.