DPReview: Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S Review

https://www.dpreview.com/reviews/panasonic-lumix-dc-gh5s-review

“… The GH5S produces the best quality video of any camera we’ve ever tested, with its high bitrate, high bit-depth footage proving impressively flexible. The a7S II can outperform it in low light if you can tolerate the shallower depth-of-field that comes with it, but beyond those specific circumstances, the GH5S would probably be our choice. The fact it works just like a GH5 and fits perfectly into the accessory and support ecosystem that’s grown up around it means the GH5S is an easy camera to just start shooting with…..”

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Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S with Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0 Aspheric zoom

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Sony 128GB M-Series UHS-II SDXC Memory Cards 2-Pack, R: 260 MB/s, W: 100 MB/s

Clicking on these affiliate links and purchasing through them helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled: Stories of Creativity, Innovation, Success’.

  • Angelbird 128GB AV Pro UHS-II SDXC Memory CardB&H
  • Angelbird 256GB Match Pack for the Panasonic EVA1B&H – special promotional packaging of two Angelbird 128GB AV Pro UHS-II SDXC memory cards that are just as usable in other cameras than the AU-EVA1 that also have UHS-II SD card slots.
  • Movcam Cage Kit for Panasonic GH5B&H
  • Panasonic 128GB UHS-II SDXC Memory CardB&H
  • Panasonic DMW-BGGH5 Battery GripB&H
  • Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S Mirrorless Micro Four Thirds Digital CameraB&H
  • Seercam CUBE Cage for Panasonic GH5 with Top Handle, Rod Riser, and Extension KitB&H
  • Sony 128GB M Series UHS-II SDXC Memory Card (U3)B&H
  • Sony 128GB M Series UHS-II SDXC Memory Card Kit (2-Pack)B&H

Lumix G Experience: Using the 20x magnification focus-assist feature in the GH5s

https://www.lumixgexperience.panasonic.co.uk/learn/expert-advice/using-the-20x-magnification-focus-assist-feature-in-the-gh5s/

“One of the new features introduced in the Lumix GH5s that I’m really enjoying is the 20x magnification assistant for manual focusing. In all other Lumix bodies we get a maximum magnification of 6x, which is often good enough, but when using manual focus lenses wide open it’s great to be able to check a little closer to make sure the focus is falling on the eyes, for example, rather than the ears….”

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Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S

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Sony 128GB M-Series UHS-II SDXC Memory Cards 2-Pack, R: 260 MB/s, W: 100 MB/s

Clicking on these affiliate links and purchasing through them helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled: Stories of Creativity, Innovation, Success’.

  • Angelbird 128GB AV Pro UHS-II SDXC Memory CardB&H
  • Angelbird 256GB Match Pack for the Panasonic EVA1B&H – special promotional packaging of two Angelbird 128GB AV Pro UHS-II SDXC memory cards that are just as usable in other cameras than the AU-EVA1 that also have UHS-II SD card slots.
  • Movcam Cage Kit for Panasonic GH5B&H
  • Panasonic 128GB UHS-II SDXC Memory CardB&H
  • Panasonic DMW-BGGH5 Battery GripB&H
  • Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S Mirrorless Micro Four Thirds Digital CameraB&H
  • Seercam CUBE Cage for Panasonic GH5 with Top Handle, Rod Riser, and Extension KitB&H
  • Sony 128GB M Series UHS-II SDXC Memory Card (U3)B&H
  • Sony 128GB M Series UHS-II SDXC Memory Card Kit (2-Pack)B&H

Lumix G Experience: The Videographer’s View – Jim Marks on the GH5s

https://www.lumixgexperience.panasonic.co.uk/learn/expert-advice/the-videographers-view-jim-marks-on-the-gh5s/#.WmdYLqhl9jE

“‘The Lumix GH5s is a very complete little package’, says professional film maker Jim Marks, who has been trying out a pre-production body before the official launch. ‘It’s ability to work in low light makes my life very much easier and means I can spend more time thinking about composition and story-telling rather than worrying what the camera is up to. The dual native ISO allows me to film almost anywhere and to work in very low light conditions without the penalty of excessive noise.’…”

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Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S with Panasonic Leica DG Vario-Elmarit 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0 Power OIS zoom lens.

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Movcam cage for Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5 and GH5S

Clicking on these affiliate links and purchasing through them helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled: Stories of Creativity, Innovation, Success’.

  • Angelbird 128GB AV Pro UHS-II SDXC Memory CardB&H
  • Angelbird 256GB Match Pack for the Panasonic EVA1B&H – special promotional packaging of two Angelbird 128GB AV Pro UHS-II SDXC memory cards that are just as usable in other cameras than the AU-EVA1 that also have UHS-II SD card slots.
  • Movcam Cage Kit for Panasonic GH5B&H
  • Panasonic 128GB UHS-II SDXC Memory CardB&H
  • Panasonic DMW-BGGH5 Battery GripB&H
  • Panasonic Lumix DC-GH5S Mirrorless Micro Four Thirds Digital CameraB&H
  • Seercam CUBE Cage for Panasonic GH5 with Top Handle, Rod Riser, and Extension KitB&H
  • Sony 128GB M Series UHS-II SDXC Memory Card (U3)B&H
  • Sony 128GB M Series UHS-II SDXC Memory Card Kit (2-Pack)B&H

LumaForge: LumaForge NAB 2017 Recap Video Playlist

Registration for SMPTE 2017 in Sydney’s Darling Harbour Opens Today, 1st May 2017

The bi-annual trade show and convention of the Australian branch of SMPTE – Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers – returns to Sydney’s Darling Harbour after an absence of what feels like forever. This time the SMPTE Conference and Exhibition will be held at ICC Sydney aka the International Convention Centre Sydney and runs from the 18th to 21st of July 2017. 

Opening hours are Tuesday 18 to Thursday 20 from 10am to 6pm, and between 10am and 3pm on Friday 21.

SMPTE Australia has been advertising that registration to attend will be open from today, 1st May. So far that has not occurred so I am hoping that the organization gets its registration mechanism up and running soon. Better to register early than put it off then forget.

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Movcam Announces Strong, Lightweight Magnesium Camera Cage for Panasonic’s Lumix GH5

Movie camera accessories maker Movcam has announced its camera cage kit for the Panasonic Lumix GH5 hybrid stills/video camera, made of magnesium rather than the more familiar aluminium, “to provide the ultimate in strength while being incredibly lightweight.” 

Movcam’s GH5 kit includes the main cage element, top handle, rod riser block and baseplate supporting 15-gauge rods. Movcam also announced a full-featured camera cage kit for Panasonic’s VariCam LT 4K Super 35 cinema camera and a camera cage kit for the Canon CinemaEOS C700 flagship Super 35 camera.

Magnesium is commonly used in manufacturing the bodies of contemporary digital cameras but this is the first time I have seen it mentioned in connection with camera cages.

Aluminium, the metal most often used in cage construction, is itself not exactly heavy as indicated by another brand’s GH5 cage received for tryout and review last week.

I am intrigued by Movcam’s description of its GH5 and especially its construction from magnesium, and hope to see one in the flesh, as it were, sometime soon.

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Clicking on these affiliate links helps us continue our work for ‘Untitled: Stories of Creativity, Innovation, Success’.

  • Movcam Cage 16×9 Kit for Panasonic GH5B&H
  • Movcam Cage and Universal Shoulder Kit for Panasonic GH5B&H
  • Movcam Cage for Panasonic GH5B&H
  • Movcam Cage Kit for Panasonic GH5B&H
  • Movcam HDMI Bracket for GH5 CageB&H
  • Movcam Riser Rail for Movcam GH5 CageB&H
  • Movcam Top Handle for GH5 & a7 II Series CagesB&H
  • Movcam Universal LWS Base Plate with Quick Release for Panasonic GH5 B&H

Seercam’s Brilliant New Cage for the Panasonic Lumix GH5 Available Soon, Extension Kit to Follow

My favourite cage for my Panasonic Lumix GH4 camera was made by Motion9, now trading internationally under the Seercam brand name. The only GH4 cage I had ever seen in real life was Motion9’s CubeMix GH4/3 and if the company’s other GH4 cage, the CubeMix GH4/3 Pro had been available at the time, then I would most definitely have bought that model instead, for its NATO sliding handle and one-touch cable clamp.

Now, Seercam has revealed its cage for the Panasonic Lumix GH5 and it looks like it will be the cage I buy for my GH5, when one finally finds its way into the country and into my hands.

Seercam’s newly-revealed Cube GH5 cage and NATO handle. Extension kit to accommodate the GH5’s DMW XLR1 audio adapter is coming soon.

I took a well-researched gamble on Motion9’s CubeMix GH4/3 and it paid off handsomely. I will be keeping my GH4 as second camera to my GH5 when it eventually arrives and it will be wearing its cage even more then than it does now.

My GH4 will continue to be equipped with its Cube Cage Round Handle, in my experience the most secure design of the two Motion9 top handles, though it does not have the convenience of fast-on, fast-on via NATO rail or the ability to balance the camera’s weight via sliding to and fro.

I would love an updated round handle in the style of the one on Canon’s Cinema EOS cameras, but Seercam’s NATO rail-mounted CubeCage Classic Plus Handle looks tempting as does its quick-release Rod Riser 1565.

I would consider replacing Seercam’s NATO rail with SmallRig’s Quick Release Safety Rail 7cm 1195 though, for its spring-loaded pins to prevent accidental removal. It is the little things that count.

Pity both items are out of stock. Quick-release mechanisms, so long as they mount tightly and securely, are key to working fast and efficiently as an independent, self-funded documentary moviemaker who cannot afford crews and wasting time screwing and unscrewing camera rigging when needing to move fast.

8Sinn’s GH5 cage and handles, especially its Scorpio top handle that can double as a side handle, was the first custom cage for the GH5 to appear online and it has several attractions including its elegance, small size and camera-right hand grip-hugging design.

I have another camera cage now, SmallRig’s 1844 cage for the Panasonic GX8, and through it have come to appreciate the small size and light weight of minimalist camera cages, but for regular through heavy-duty moviemaking when I need to attach a range of accessories to the rig, Motion9/Seercam’s beautifully conceived, brilliantly designed and expertly manufactured cages are my go-to standard.

You can see why in the photographs below. For your product comparison convenience, links to other current GH5 cages are listed at the base of this article.

Seercam’s Cube GH5 body and handle

Coming soon: extension kit for placing handle over DMW XLR1 audio adapter

Of all the GH5 cages listed below, those by 8Sinn and Seercam remain at the top of my wishlist.

If I were shooting features as part of a small crew alongside a camera assistant and audio recordist then I would choose 8Sinn’s cage along with Veydra or Duclos’ Voigtlaender ciné-modded native M43 prime lenses and follow focus device.

While Veydra cinema primes deliver a more standardized look that gets out of the way of the story, Voigtlaender’s faster optics produce quirkier looks that can enhance certain types of stories.

If shooting documentaries as a doing-it-all-myself one-person crew then hands-down I would chose Seercam’s GH5 cage along with Olympus M.Zuiko Pro zoom and prime lenses though I may add one or two Panasonic lenses for the benefits of extra stabilization and DFD – Depth from Defocus.

I really like M.Zuiko Pro lenses’ repeatable hard-stop manual clutch focus mechanism, build quality, durability and colour consistency across the range, and can sacrifice some stabilization for the sake of all that. They are terrific for video as well as stills photography.

There was some consternation about the Olympus M.Zuiko 7-14mm f/2.8’s inability to accept screw-on filters when it first appeared, as there was about Panasonic’s Lumix 7.14mm f/4.0 lens, but some third-party filter adapter solutions for square or rectangular filters have appeared:

Links:

SmallRig Releases Two Custom Cages for Fujifilm X-T2, With & Without Vertical Power Booster Grip

Not one but two new cages for the Fujifilm X-T2 camera have been released by SmallRig and these are as unexpected in their design and assembly methods as LockCircle’s cage for the X-T2 minus vertical power booster grip that I wrote about earlier this year. These are interesting times, not only for X-T2 cages but for the X-T2 itself, with a rumoured firmware update soon to appear and a possible “ultimate X-camera based on the X-T design”. 

Have Allen key, will assemble: SmallRig’s X-T2 cage for Fujifilm X-T2/X-T1 camera 1888, some self-assembly required.

A standout feature in the larger of SmallRig’s two cages for the X-T2 is that they arrive in four pieces that then require the proud new owner to do a little self-assembly work with a classic Allen key.

The Vertical Power Booster Grip-inclusive SmallRig design seems to have one flaw that photographer/moviemaker Mike Kobal discovered when assembling his recently, in the way the included HDMI cable clamp prevents easy access to the VPB-XT2’s battery tray.

Mr Kobal’s solution was to extend the clamp away from the cage body via two rods included with another camera cage in his collection. A SmallRig-branded alternative may lie in SmallRig’s own 15mm 1/4″-threaded micro-rods.

SmallRig X-T2 Cage for Fujifilm X-T2 Camera 1888

SmallRig Fuji X-T2 Cage for Fujifilm X-T2 Camera 1881

SmallRig HDMI Cable Clamp for Fujifilm X-T2 Cage 1949

I have been informed of other X-T2 custom cages on the horizon and am keeping a keen eye out for them. An X-T2 is high up on my wishlist as companion for my X-Pro2 for zoom lenses and prime lenses wider and longer than comfortably work with the X-Pro2’s hybrid optical viewfinder, but I am in two minds about the X-T2 as a video camera right now.

As cinematographer/director Paul Leeming has written, the 4K Super 35 X-T2 needs some firmware updates for it to become a serious contender against Panasonic’s 4K Super 16 Lumix GH5. A better bet may be to wait until that mooted “ultimate X-camera based on the X-T design” arrives on the scene sometime in the coming year.

Meanwhile some intriguing developments are occurring on the Fujinon broadcast and cinema lens front, with the legendary high-end Cabrio PL-mount lenses dropping US$10,000 each, as reported by News Shooter below, and the two zoom lenses from Fujifilm’s new MK line appearing later this year with X-Mounts.

Might X-Mount XK zooms be a distant possibility, perhaps when that “ultimate X-camera based on the X-T design” arrives? In which case, heftier X-T design camera cages will be required for the higher-end Super 35 moviemaking to which the camera may be perfectly suited.

Links:

Blackmagic Design Announces Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro Digital Cinema Camera Plus More, Available Right Now

Innovative Australian movie and television production hardware and software company Blackmagic Design has announced an exciting new high-end digital movie camera, new colour grading hardware and the addition of two Linux distribution versions of its industry-essential high end colour grading and video editing software in its free and paid variations, DaVinci Resolve and Davinci Resolve Studio. 

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Blackmagic Design CEO Grant Petty announced the immediate availability of the URSA Mini Pro 4.6K digital cinema camera in three lens mount versions, two new colour grading hardware control surfaces in the DaVinci Resolve Micro Panel and the DaVinci Resolve Mini Panel, and the availability of DaVinci Resolve and DaVinci Resolve Studio in Red Hat and CentOS link distributions.

The URSA Mini Pro 4.6K replaces and advances beyond previous URSA cameras, the URSA and URSA Mini in their 4K and 4.6K versions. It comes in versions for three industry-standard lens mounts, B4, EF and PL, and upgrade schemes are available for owners of its predecessor cameras.

Blackmagic’s URSA Mini Pro 4.6K delivers on the promise of its URSA ancestors and is now, on the basis of specifications, an attractive and affordable camera for independent moviemakers wishing to move beyond current hybrid stills/video cameras and video camcorders into the realm of feature film quality CinemaDNG raw and ProRes image recording, trading their one-person operator status for a small crew.

The addition of the much-requested built-in ND filters boosts the allure of the URSA Mini Pro 4.6K for run-and-gun documentary videographers, while moviemakers working on less frenetic projects may wish to continue using high-end third-party neutral density filters sets attached by screwing on or via matte boxes.

Meanwhile, many independent moviemakers are wondering what has happened to the long hoped-for update to 2013’s Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, the only affordable Super 16 raw movie-shooting small Micro Four Thirds-lensed pocket camera on the market, able to be used with none to minimal rigging and without external monitor/recorder.

URSA Mini Pro 4.6K

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A Basic Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 4.6K Kit

Just a little bit bigger than the legendary Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, a basic Blackmagic URSA Mini Pro 4.6K kit that may need the addition of some added extras like the Shoulder Mount Kit, spare battery pack, ergonomic hand grip, follow-focus device, more fast SD or CFast cards, matte box and more.

DaVinci Resolve Micro Panel

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DaVinci Resolve Mini Panel

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DaVinci Resolve and DaVinci Resolve Studio 12.5 for Red Hat and CentOS Linux

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Image Credits:

Header image by Carmel D. Morris with apologies to CrepusculumA.