March 17, 2015 at 9:12PM

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Should you buy Panasonic GH4 now or wait for GH5?

We are looking forward to bring 4K camera on board. According to our research, GH4 offers great ergonomics and good value for money. However, there are rumors about GH5. We are curious about two features - 4K @ 60 fps and low light improvement? What's your thoughts? There is no second thought to buy GH4. But, is the wait for GH5? Also, any guesses for release date and price margin?

24 Comments

The GH4 came on the market last April and Panasonic normally follows an 18-24 month update schedule, so I would not expect to see a GH5 until the end of 2015 at the earliest.

There are lots of rumors about a new prosumer cine camera ( think competitor to the Canon C100 cine camera ) from Panasonic that will be revealed at NAB 2015, which is about 4 weeks from now.

March 18, 2015 at 5:54AM

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Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer
33807

Thank you Guy.
Looking forward to NAB 2015.

March 18, 2015 at 6:18PM

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redboxfilms
indie production house
126

There wil always be a new camera on it's way.
You can only make a movie today with a camera you hold in your hands (or mounted anywhere) today...

March 20, 2015 at 7:29AM

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WalterBrokx
Director, DOP, Writer, Editor, Producer
10058

Well said.

March 22, 2015 at 7:45PM

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redboxfilms
indie production house
126

Very true. The question to ask yourself would have to be... and what will you be doing whilst you are waiting?

March 26, 2015 at 1:06AM, Edited March 26, 1:06AM

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Julian Richards
Film Warlord
1644

I would never wait as I'm not a tech freak. It is best to work with what you have and then try out the new tech and see if it is needed for your production. Buy our of need and not want

January 9, 2016 at 11:13PM

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Tony Louis
Filmmaker/Director/Photographer
147

I'm agree with walter, the idea I follow is always waiting as long as I can before buying new gear. I buy only when i'm sure that the job that require the new gear is going to happen. It's tough because we always want new toys... So my advice, if you can wait, wait. The worst that can happens is seeing the price of the gh4 drop more.

March 27, 2015 at 2:38PM

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AvdS
1515

If you wait for the next, better version of a camera, you'll never shoot anything=) NAB should be a pretty solid indicator when the next models are coming out. Do the math, look at the upgrades and see if they are enough to make you wait. I'm personally waiting for Easter or Memorial Day for a GH4 price drop or bundle deal.

March 22, 2015 at 4:46PM

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Josh.R
Motion Designer/Predator
1261

Our math has only two criteria for GH5. Low light improvement 4k @ 60 fps. 100% agree with you, if upgrade and price are not worth to wait, GH4 price will drop and it will be on board without second thought :-)

Cheers!

March 22, 2015 at 7:48PM

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redboxfilms
indie production house
126

In fact the price of the GH4 is down to 1300 USD. Given its wide range of configurable video parameters and support for in-camera 4K recording, it is a bargain. V-Log is apparently on the way, so dynamic range will even get better. Contrary to what most people believe, the camera is not bad at all in low light. (yeah I know, the A7s is better in low light). Just make sure you get the video settings right. (see my other post)

So my advice to anyone who wants to get started with 4K for a very reasonable price: get a GH4 now, shoot with it for the next 12-18 months or so, and then when the gh5 will be released, sell it for half the price you bought it for, and get the new camera. I regularly do this with my camera's, but I stick to my lenses. Enjoy.

March 25, 2015 at 4:06PM

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Erwin Hartsuiker
CineVideo-NL videographer
823

why buy a GH5 when you can wait for GH6!? its all about timing and production needs. if you have the need for GH4 now, get it. otherwise just sit and wait until you need the upgraded camera

May 16, 2015 at 9:52PM

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Aaron Miller
Boom-Poll Operator
162

I agree

January 10, 2016 at 12:01AM

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Tony Louis
Filmmaker/Director/Photographer
147

Why buy GH6 when there will be GH7. Then....why bye GH7?

May 22, 2015 at 8:58AM, Edited May 22, 8:58AM

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Einar Gabbassoff
D&CD at Frame One Studio
1369

LMAO LOL. What's about the GH100 LOL I am still using the GH2. Many people haven't even maximised the use of HD Yet they look for 8K LOL. The reason why I did not go for the GH4 is because of it's increased cropped sensor. I much prefer the GH2's sensor. I'm also not too happy with the 96fps slow motion on the GH4. I'm not waiting for the GH5, I will just continue using what I have and just try out the GH5 when it comes along and see if it meets my production needs.

January 9, 2016 at 11:24PM, Edited January 9, 11:24PM

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Tony Louis
Filmmaker/Director/Photographer
147

I´d better waith for the A7S II. Or even just buy the A7r II. GH4´s 4K is not very good. And it´s low light capabilities are quite odd.

June 26, 2015 at 4:45AM

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Jubal
Filmmaker
88

whats wrong with GH4's 4k ?

August 27, 2015 at 6:55AM

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Igor Smitka
DP, editor
150

I dissaree. There is nothing wrong with the GH4 apart from it's increased crop sensor and soft 96fps slow motion picture. Videography and photography are shot at all levels of light, and it all depends in what conditions you are shooting that determines a camera's low light capability. On average the GH4's Low light capability is OK and can be increased with lenses such as Voigtlander F/0.95 wide apertures and the Metabones adaptors available. There is always a way around it. Most shoots employ some kind of external light source anyway and most of the time one spends time having to use neutral density filters on their camera to cut down the light. If you are shooting in the dark purchase a camera suited to the task, just like a hammer for a nail and a screwdriver for a screw. Our choice of cameras are our tools and we have to choose carefully.

January 9, 2016 at 11:57PM, Edited January 9, 11:58PM

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Tony Louis
Filmmaker/Director/Photographer
147

GH5 wants: Better low-light, 4:2:2, 10-bit.

July 27, 2015 at 11:39PM

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I agree with that only if you need it. Many people don't use half the features on their cameras. I would find improved low light a great help because I need it 25% of the time. & Yes 4:2:2, would be awesome

January 10, 2016 at 12:01AM

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Tony Louis
Filmmaker/Director/Photographer
147

Hey Redbox, if it was me, I would consider a G7... $800 and when the GH5 comes out, you'll have a killer little B cam. Otherwise the GH4 is still a great camera. Love mine!
Also depends on your work load right now. Might make financial sense to dive in and get a camera now if there is work.

July 31, 2015 at 9:00AM

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Caleb Pike
Shooter, Educator
277

Yes, they have about the same 4k ( UHD ) quality, it's smaller, lighter, and looks pretty awesome for the range price! I wait a DVX200, this camcorder ... WOW!

August 11, 2015 at 1:42AM

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Vincenzo Viscuso
Filmmaker, DoP, Nerd
166

I had same dilemma and guess what i did, Bought a Panasonic G7, Lumix 12-35 2.8 & Lumix 20mm 1.7.
Believe me, i am very happy with my choice and will wait for GH5 while enjoy my G7.

January 20, 2016 at 9:35PM

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Altaf Busal
Filmmaker & Photographer
74

Whatever you do, don't wait. Get a used now GH4 at a low-ball price and than sell it when the GH5 comes out. It's not an either or proposition, and your cost of ownership will be minimal.

March 1, 2016 at 12:43PM, Edited March 1, 12:43PM

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Marc B
Shooter & Editor
1020

Well the GH4 is likely to be called the GH5, and may be 6K video.. A good report gives good reason to think the next step will be 6K for Panasonic, and that makes sense. I saw 8K video at IBC in Amsterdam in 2015, and many in the high end areana are already discussing 8K as a standard and even 16K.. I have no idea where the pixel count will end, but many more are looking at the HDR aspects which still shave had for many years...and its now making its way into video.
You got some BIG hard drives or could storage for all that data?
Here is a pert of what i saw...The GH5 will have those specs:

– 6k recording at 30fps and 4K at 60fps
– Each 6K frame has 18 Million Pixels. this means you can screen grab 18MP photos from each 6K recorded frame
– If the camera records 6K than the Four Thirds sensor will have 20+ Megapixels in “normal still photo mode”..

If you want to read more then take a look...

http://www.43rumors.com/

Best. John Keedwell

March 2, 2016 at 6:04PM

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John Keedwell
DoP, Author, Writer for British Cinematographer magazine.
86

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