Does the GH3 take better stills than the GH2?

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by acuriousman, Oct 26, 2013.

  1. acuriousman

    acuriousman Mu-43 Rookie

    Jul 20, 2013
    I've been considering picking up a GH3 but I've got two main concerns.

    1. The sensor is smaller than the GH2. Doesn't this mean the quality will be less since it has less space for light and such?

    2. How much better is it for stills over the GH2? Is it a MAJOR upgrade or fairly minor?

    Apologies for the nooby question, just wanted to find out. :)
  2. kevinparis

    kevinparis Cantankerous Scotsman Subscribing Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    Gent, Belgium
    difference in sensor size is minimal... if you shoot 4:3 ratio you get the same number of pixels of information... the 'bigger' sensor in the GH2 just allows other aspect ratios to be shot without cropping

    in terms of still image the differences will be minor to the point of unnoticeable to the majority of photographers and all the viewers of your photographs

  3. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 5, 2013
    San Diego
    Doug Green
    Probably somewhat better at ISOs of 3200 or higher. Probably very slightly better at ISOs from 1600-2800. Probably no visible difference at ISOs below 1600
  4. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Main difference in sensor size is when you shoot at 16:9. There the GH2 gives you more sensor and wider angle of view than GH3.

    Image quality is otherwise slightly better for GH3 with IMO the only noticeably difference seen when trying to recover deep shadows during RAW processing.
  5. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    I've had both (sold the gh2). Where you'll see the differences are:

    Low light, high ISO. At any given ISO, the GH3 has less noise than the GH2 at 1 stop lower ISO (IOW, the GH3 has lower noise at ISO3200 than the GH2 has at 1600.)

    The GH3 has at least 1 stop more dynamic range, so scenes with very bright highlights and deep shadows will retain more detail. But you may need to shoot RAW and use a program like Lightroom to see the full difference.

    If you shoot jpgs, the GH3 renders colors much more naturally than the GH2.

    If you like to shoot action, the GH3 will do a better job of tracking motion in C-AF mode.

    The sensor size will only make a difference if you (1) shoot in 3:2 or 16:9 and (2) crop heavily or make very, very large prints.
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