Review: Panasonic Lumix GH2

By Branko Miletic

It’s not just the interchangeable lenses that make its new Lumix GH2 prosumer (or hybrid if you like) snapper a hot ticket – the new CMOS senor and improved autofocus speeds help, too.

As an upgrade to Panasonic’s GH1, which was aimed at the digital videophile who also likes to take stills, the GH2 also boasts 16.05 megapixels and along with a few other upgrades, it still looks and feels pretty much like the GH1.

For my testing, I used the 14-140 mm lens, which is more than a suitable addition to any photographer’s arsenal – prosumer or otherwise. On top of that the camera has got an autofocus that is fast enough to give you whiplash and thanks to the way it’s been designed, is easy to handle and use.

Now I know the photo purists out there will be kicking and screaming about how this is not a true DSLR and they would be technically correct – and in some reviews of the GH2 have found the digital stills to be a tad below the quality of a proper DSLR, although to be honest, I disagree.

And let me point out the three-core Venus VI FHD engine handles the processing with almost effortless. Moreover, this camera is perhaps the shape of things to come; sort of like the smartphone of cameras – a bit of this and a bit of that and able to do many different tasks.

One thing that I found different was the hinged LCD screen, which was very much a video camera ‘thing’ and also the way you go through the menu selection is more akin to a video recorder than a camara. And speaking of video, the quality that came out of the GH2 was perhaps the best I have seen from a camera in this category. Add to that the myriad of focusing and other camera settings the GH2 has to offer, you wouldn’t be getting buyer’s regret if you bought the device.

However, it does have a price tag that is now around the $1500 mark, making the Lumix GH2 a touch on the pricey side and will be considered by some as being a bit heavy.

But maybe we shouldn’t  be such princesses when it comes to the weight of digital tech- after all, we are only talking about differences that are in the tens of grams and as for the price, you can get it for about $500 less online if you are prepared to shop around.

Pros: top notch video quality; ergonomic grip; super fast autofocus
Cons: more suited for video than stills; a bit expensive

Rating: 3.5 / 5