GF1 and GH2

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by dfroelich, Nov 15, 2010.

  1. dfroelich

    dfroelich Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 15, 2010
    To start out: My name is Dan, and I have never owned a M43 camera. About 10 years ago, I started photography with a Nikon 35mm SLR (N90, I think it was?) As a poor high schooler, I only shot a dozen rolls before going bankrupt, so I sold it and switched to digital P&S's. I miss the quality, but other than the continuing costs of film, I like the portability of the small cameras.
    So...M43's have always been in my mind. I have preordered the GH2(/w 14-42) because I need good video recording as well, and the articulated screen is a must for filming and also the all too fun arm's reach candid shots.
    To maximize portability, I was ready to also order the 20mm 1.7 lens, when the GF1 (/w 20mm) price dropped to 599. The body only GF1 sell on ebay for 350-400+ lightly used, so I ordered that kit with the notion to keep the lens, sell the body, and be up as much as $100 vs. buying the 20mm separate at $320.

    After that too lenghty introduction (hoping to give perspective), I am now considering keeping both bodies: GF1 to for max portability and the GH2 for video and a little more muscle for stills.
    If I sell the GF1, I would put that cash into a longer lens to be decided later.

    My question: Is there enough of difference (both physical size and IQ) between the two bodies to justify keeping both?

    I appreciate any thoughts or ideas.
  2. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    1st off welcome.
    If money is not the issue, keep both as I have voted. There is a world of difference between the 2 cameras and yet very similar. I have the GF1 and couldn't ask for a better camera. I'm sure you'll get more responses.
  3. carpandean

    carpandean Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 29, 2010
    Western NY
    Those who own both can tell you better, but I would guess that if you can afford to keep both, the physical size alone would make it worth keeping both. The GF1's grip is significantly smaller than that of the GH2's and its EVF (LVF1) is not as good as the GH2's, but is removable (or you could never use one, if that's your preference.) This means two things: (1) even with the pancake, the grip and viewfinder of the GH2 make it considerably less pocketable, and (2) in cases where you aren't concerned with pocketability, the GH2 will be much nicer to use.
  4. grebeman

    grebeman Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2010
    South Brent, south Devon (UK)
    Real Name:
    As a very happy GF1 (and G1) owner, guess how I voted.

  5. dfroelich

    dfroelich Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 15, 2010
    Thank you for the welcome and the input so far!

    Money is always an issue. Keeping both would mean giving up on a telephoto lens for awhile. The 45-200mm lens is a good deal less expensive than the 100-300 I was eyeing, so maybe that would be a compromise.

    carpandean - If I keep both, I would retain ultimate pocketability of the GF1 without the add-on viewfinder. I understand that as long as it is not too bright, the rear screen works just fine, if not a tiny bit laggy.

    I hope the GH2 ships soon enough that I will be able to get a feel for its size and portability before deciding what to do with the GF1. I fear that the resale price will fall as the GF2 gets closer to release.

    For you who have a similar pair, which camera do you reach for more before heading out?
  6. apicius9

    apicius9 Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 1, 2010
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I had a G1, switched to a GH1, and now have the GH2 on order - and I recently got a GF1 because I like the idea of a second body that can use the same lenses. Since I mostly use manual lenses, I really liked the idea of the GF1 with small c-mounts as a very portable solution. However, after playing with the GF1 for a while, I decided to sell it again: The only reason for that is that it loses its compactness and portability with the external viewfinder which is also of questionable quality compared to the ones in the other cameras. And, with my eyesight as it is, I have a hard time using the LCD for manual focusing - and living in Hawaii doesn't help, too many bright and sunny days ;) So, while the GF1 is close to my dream camera in every other way, I now ordered a 'cheap' G1 as a second body. But if you feel comfortable with manual focusing through the LCD or exclusively use AF lenses, the GF1/GH2 combo should be a dream team.

    My 2 cts,

  7. pjohngren

    pjohngren Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 15, 2010
    I started with the GF1 with the 20mm and after getting the 14-45 and 45-200, was able to get a G1 body. I really like having both these "kits", leaving the 20 on the GF1 and using the zooms on the G1. Don't be too quick in selling the GF1. My sense is that it is a bit of a classic already. As to your telephoto, I really like the 45-200. It is very reasonably priced. Where else can you get the equivalent of 400mm with image stabilization in a nicely constructed lens?
  8. dfroelich

    dfroelich Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 15, 2010
    Thanks Stefen and pjohngren!

    Stefen - We don't have quite as much sun as Hawaii in Washington, well, I guess not too many places do. Haha! At least for now, I will be sticking with the AF M43 lenses. I sold everything I had from before.

    This is great information. Looking at the side by side size comparison of the two at Lumix GH2 Review I can see a very very good reason to keep them both. I was thinking the same thing of leaving the 20 on the GF1 and probably the 14-42 on the GH2 with the 45-200 waiting in the case. This sounds pretty good. :)

    pjohngren Do you use a single case for all the gear? How big would it be? I think a small soft case for the GF1/20mm that fits in a large hard pelican case with the GH2/14-42 and 45-200 and the extra stuff would be pretty great. The 1400 would fit everything with about a 7"x3" compartment for extras.
  9. pjohngren

    pjohngren Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 15, 2010
    At this point I seem to be going with a case for each kit. For the G1 with the 14-45 and 45-200, plus spare battery and a 52mm polarizer, I have the Lowepro Rezo 160AW and it is perfect - I love it. For the GF1 with 20mm with battery and polarizer I have the Lowepro Apex 100AW, and that is also really nice. Am waiting to see if the 14mm will fit in there as well. May have to go one size up.

    I guess my thinking is that I can then grab the bag/kit that suits the situation or my mood.
  10. dfroelich

    dfroelich Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 15, 2010
    Lowepro makes nice stuff. I have an old one somewhere I had completely forgotten about from my first digital, a Nikon 995. It is probably a bit too big for the GF1. I guess it can be room left over for a bit more was pretty thin walled.

    Well, now I'm excited to start shooting with this GF1! UPS is promising Wednesday, and when the GH2 decides to ship is anyone's guess.

    Thanks for all the good information. I'll surely be sticking around.
  11. dfroelich

    dfroelich Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 15, 2010
    The GF1 arrived today, and this thing is great! I decided to cancel my order of the GH2 until I at least learn how to use this one. I will be ordering the 45-200 lens, and perhaps the gh2 later on next spring.

    Thank you all for the guidance!
  12. starlabs

    starlabs Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 30, 2010
    Los Angeles
    Congratulations! Enjoy your new camera! :2thumbs:
  13. jhob

    jhob Mu-43 Veteran

    you could always get an MF tele-zoom, they're abound on ebay and cheap as chips, you just need an adaptor ring which would cost £20-£30.

    GF1 is a fantastic camera - I started enjoying photography again when I bought mine.
  14. lillefot

    lillefot Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 7, 2010
    Oslo, Norway
    I have a GF1 that I will never sell, and a GH2 in pre-order -- guess what I voted? :)
  15. dfroelich

    dfroelich Mu-43 Regular

    Nov 15, 2010

    Haha! I can guess.

    I definitely still want the GH2 for the reasons above, but I really don't need 2 new bundles of confusion! Perhaps when the price drops, I'll put in a new order.

    Thank you all.

    I am having a blast with the GF1 so far. We got our first snow this week, so not the easiest scene to shoot. The 45-200 should be in tomorrow!