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Panasonic announces upcoming firmware update for DMC-GH2

By dpreview staff on Nov 7, 2011 at 14:00 GMT

Panasonic has announced a firmware update for its Lumix DMC-GH2 video-orientated interchangeable lens camera that will offer a range of improvements and new features. First and foremost is a high bitrate (24Mbps) movie mode that's designed for video editing purposes. Extended compatibility with the company's latest 'X' series powerzoom lenses is also included, as is the ability to turn all touchscreen features completely off. An update to the PHOTOfunSTUDIO 6.0 software will also be available to handle the GH2's new video mode. Both updates will be available at the beginning of December.

Press Release:

Panasonic Announces the Firmware Update Program for DMC-GH2 and PHOTOfunSTUDIO 6.0 BD Edition

Panasonic announces the new firmware update program for the digital interchangeable lens system cameras DMC-GH2 of LUMIX G Micro System and for the GH2 bundled software PHOTOfunSTUDIO 6.0 BD Edition.

The new firmware programs will be available worldwide from the beginning of December at http://panasonic.jp/support/global/cs/dsc/.

The following functions will be available with the new firmware:

For DMC-GH2

  • New video mode which is suitable for editing video recorded at high bit rate (24Mbps)
  • New functional option with Power Zoom Lens ([DISP FOCAL LENGTH (Display of Focal Length)], [STEP ZOOM], [ZOOM RESUME], [ZOOM SPEED] and [ZOOM RING*])
  • Full area enlargement of AF area setting
  • Improvement in the speed of consecutive shooting when shot with auto bracket
  • Increased number of recordable images in consecutive shooting
  • [EX.TELE CONV. (Extra Tele Conversion)] can be set ON/OFF separately in photo or video recording
  • More accurate light adjustment of built-in flash
  • Improvement in the AF performance in video recording
  • Synchronization of alarm volume for low battery with [BEEP VOLUME]
  • New [HALF-PRESS RELEASE] function
  • Improved NR(Noise Reduction) in high sensitivity shooting
  • ON/OFF control of the touch-screen

For PHOTOfunSTUDIO 6.0 BD Edition

  • Compatible with new video mode added with the GH2 firmware update mentioned above

*Available with LUMIX G X VARIO PZ 45-175mm / F4.0-5.6 ASPH. / POWER O.I.S. only.

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Comments

Total comments: 26
Steven Micallef
By Steven Micallef (Dec 7, 2011)

It's finally available!

0 upvotes
Julian Craane
By Julian Craane (Nov 10, 2011)

The 2 function is awesome. Displays everything u'r doing with the lens. And as an Indie Filmaker I love the 24Mps option. Fantastic!

0 upvotes
Julian Craane
By Julian Craane (Nov 10, 2011)

I mean't second function. :)

0 upvotes
Zuzullo
By Zuzullo (Nov 8, 2011)

New [HALF-PRESS RELEASE] function:

Do you know if this has to do with the fact that: (?)

in Panasonic cameras:
"Pictures are displayed until shutter button is pressed halfway."

While in Canon, Nikon, etc,:
"Pictures are displayed until shutter button is released halfway."

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Inprogress
By Inprogress (Nov 8, 2011)

I was really hoping they would remove the 2 minute ceiling on bulb mode. I discovered the limit accidentally three weeks ago to my sadness.

0 upvotes
Zuzullo
By Zuzullo (Nov 7, 2011)

Only VIDEO?!?
What about these PHOTO bugs:

- [LIVE preview] is not consistent during [Aperture Preview] either [MF Zoom].
- [Aperture Preview] is aborted if you touch the focus ring.
- [MF Zoom] and [MF Guide] does not show when camera fail to focus.
- Scale distance figures/"numbers" missing in the [MF Guide].
- [MF Zoom] fill the whole screen obstructing us to continue composition/framing the subject.
- 100% EVF ON/OFF in all modes. (Already available using [Touch Shutter ON] in cont.SH mode)

1 upvote
Klarno
By Klarno (Nov 8, 2011)

All are valid issues, yes, but don't confuse bugs with poor--but deliberate--design.

Also, only two of the changes listed in the press release look strictly video related. All of the rest are for both video and stills or just for stills.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
1 upvote
Zuzullo
By Zuzullo (Nov 8, 2011)

Actually I see only 1 or 2 bug-fix in their list (aka: low battery beeping...).
The rest are improves/new functions. Improves are welcome but I am afraid they are neglecting some real bugs here.

At least the first 3 points in my list - we have to agree - they are bugs, right?! :)

Comment edited 13 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (Nov 7, 2011)

What is really cool is that you could selectively upload MP4 movies from a GH2 with an eye-fi card. It won’t work with AVC-HD movies because their “Protected” scheme is different for AVC-HD.

I am liking this update more and more now.

2 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (Nov 7, 2011)

It looks like this new movie mode is 1080p @ 30 FPS for NTSC and 25 FPS for PAL in an MP4 container. Codec is still unknown but it does sound like PAL users will finally get what they have been asking for.

2 upvotes
compositor20
By compositor20 (Nov 7, 2011)

Full area enlargement of AF area setting ---- is this the same as the PIP in panasonic g3 for manual focus?

the improvement in noise reduction is welcomed... if it is in raw it would be better (to get rid of the green tint at high iso) since grain is already acceptable...

2 upvotes
strata83
By strata83 (Nov 7, 2011)

No, I believe they mean it will be possible to move the focusing area to the edges of the frame.

0 upvotes
Zuzullo
By Zuzullo (Nov 8, 2011)

Yes, I believe strata83 is right.

PIP exists in Canon for over 10yr.
Thats how long it takes Panasonic to realize things!
...and it is still missing in their premium model.

"if they could only let me help" LOL

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
1 upvote
KingArthur10
By KingArthur10 (Nov 7, 2011)

I'm most interested to learn what the improvements to bracketed shooting speeds and increased number of recordable images are. Will they squeeze another RAW shot or two out? Faster write speeds to the card?

0 upvotes
Bob Meyer
By Bob Meyer (Nov 7, 2011)

Right now auto-bracketed shots seem to be taken at the low-speed continuous frame rate. They're probably bumping that up tot he high speed (5 fps) rate. I'm curious about the other change, too.

0 upvotes
Optimal Prime
By Optimal Prime (Nov 11, 2011)

Listed there: "Increased number of recordable images in consecutive shooting" = more than the current 5fps.

0 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (Nov 7, 2011)

They say it is "movie mode that's designed for video editing purposes". This won't be 1080p @ 60 FPS. Their statement implies that it is a very grade-able color profile and probably I frames only.

This will be very interesting to see how grade-able it is. However, the hack has given us a lot of that already.

0 upvotes
hammerheadfistpunch
By hammerheadfistpunch (Nov 7, 2011)

24Mbps I frame only footage would suck much. maybe 4:2:2 color?

0 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (Nov 7, 2011)

I wonder if the new movie mode will just be GOP = 1. That would be kind of funny if they just copied what the hacker’s did. Driftwood should definitely sue Panasonic for copy write infringement if that is the case.

1 upvote
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (Nov 7, 2011)

I hope it is 1080p @ 60 FPS. However, I think it could just be 720p @ 60 FPS with I P and B frames. That would be very useful though.

1 upvote
Cy Cheze
By Cy Cheze (Nov 7, 2011)

The GH2 already shoots video at 1920x1080 (60i, 24p) or 1280x720 60p.

This alters the editing software that accompanies the GH2, but does not add any new video mode to the camera. Since the GH2 sensor is 60hz, one might think there be firmware to allow 1080 60p video, but maybe that's being reserved for the GH3.

0 upvotes
strata83
By strata83 (Nov 7, 2011)

I believe they will introduce MP4 video recording mode, just like in the new GX1.

0 upvotes
hammerheadfistpunch
By hammerheadfistpunch (Nov 7, 2011)

I though the sensor drive in the GH2 was 120hz?

0 upvotes
strata83
By strata83 (Nov 7, 2011)

120 Hz is possible, but it's used for AF only

0 upvotes
Menneisyys
By Menneisyys (Nov 7, 2011)

"Since the GH2 sensor is 60hz, one might think there be firmware to allow 1080 60p video, but maybe that's being reserved for the GH3."

Pana seem to have dropped the ball. Their camera would most probably be able to record 1080 60p, particularly now that AVCHD2.0 is out too. They, however, don't implement this (either), while Sony has been providing 1080 60p in their P&S cameras for a year and also started doing the same in their more serious lineup (NEX 5n/7/A77/A65) late Summer. Pana doesn't seem to be a decent alternative to Sony's offerings, it seems. (Of course I know the GH2 is, otherwise, superior to even the 5n / A77 when it comes to true 1080 resolution - see http://www.eoshd.com/content/4279/how-the-gh2-is-still-top-dog-for-video-quality . Nevertheless, 60p is really useful for, say, benchmarks, video game reviews where the subject (for example, an iPhone / iPad) is able to refresh its screen content at 1/60 sec, unlike, say, WP7 phones.)

0 upvotes
Joe Ogiba
By Joe Ogiba (Nov 7, 2011)

The GH2 has a 1080p24 24mbit/sec mode so is this also a 720p60 24mbit/sec mode or what ?

0 upvotes
Total comments: 26