Body and Design (cont.)

The GH2 is operationally very similar to the GH1 but some changes have been made, which bring the new model in line with more recent G-series cameras, specifically the Lumix DMC-G2.

Body Elements

Like the G2, the GH2 has a 3.0" wide screen display built onto a hinge that allows it to swivel and tilt. The LCD is made up of 460,000 dots, and whilst in resolution terms it's not quite on a par with the VGA screens that have almost become standard on DSLRs its 60fps refresh rate produces a very smooth refresh rate. The screen can be turned around completely ('face in') to protect it when not in use.
Also like the G2, the GH2's screen is now touch (or rather pressure) sensitive. You can control most functions (although not the main menus), set the focus point or even take pictures directly by touching the screen if you so fancy.
The GH2's rather small flash has a Guide Number of 15.6 at ISO 200 which is pretty good for a camera in this class, and perfectly adequate for the occasional social snap in low light or for a bit of fill-in on a sunny day. You can, of course, attach a dedicated unit to the built-in hot shoe.

A stereo microphone is built into the flash housing, which provides impressively good sound reproduction.
On the left hand side of the camera is a combined USB/video out connector and a HDMI port for connection to your HDTV. No HDMI cable is included with the camera, however, so that's something you will need to invest in separately.
Above the main ports there's a combined external microphone / wired remote control socket. The socket is for microphones with a 2.5mm jack, rather than 3.5mm, so if you already own recording equipment that uses a 3.5mm jack, you will require an adapter to use it with the GH2.
Compared to the GH1, the GH2's main control dial has migrated from the front grip to the back of the camera (where it is operated by the thumb, rather than the forefinger, as before). It may seem like a minor change, but often on small cameras it is the placing of buttons and dials that makes the difference between usable and unusable manual controls.
The top plate has had a bit of a re-jig too - gone are the Q.Menu (moved to the back of the camera) and the silly dedicated 'Film Mode' button, replaced by a direct movie button and a customizable Fn button.
The left-hand dial is still dedicated to focus functions, but now looks identical to the same dial on the G2. It has an extra lever around its base meaning it now covers focus area (single, multi, tracking, face detection) and focus mode (single or continuous AF, manual focus).