GH-1 PAL Version vs NTSC

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by ccunningham, Jun 2, 2013.

  1. ccunningham

    ccunningham Mu-43 Veteran

    453
    Jul 23, 2010
    I was looking for a second gh2 body so I could have a spare video camera, but the price on gh2 bodies has risen (by a lot) after I got mine on a clearance sale. But I came across a nicely priced new-old-stock gh1 from an ebay seller, so I bit and bought the last one they had. It arrived yesterday so I charged up the battery and fired it up. It was exactly what the seller said, except for one thing. It's the PAL version instead of the NTSC version they described, and I live in an NTSC region.

    Now from what I can tell, if I download ptools and hack it, I can switch it from 25p and get 24p video. While I might have hacked it anyway, it kind of bugs me that the seller advertised an NTSC model but shipped me a PAL model, so I want to send it back and get a refund. On the other hand, I could just hack it, and consider myself lucky to get a cheap gh1. But once I hack it, I'm pretty sure that the seller won't give me a refund anymore, and I understand why.

    Is it true that there really is no difference between the NTSC and PAL cameras once they've been hacked? Do I have it right that if I hack it, I can set it up for 24p video recording?

    So I ask you mu-43, what would you do?
     
  2. speedandstyle

    speedandstyle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    You can convert the video in post with the right software. Before 24p became available a lot of guys would get PAL cameras because 25fps is closer to 24 than 30 of NTSC.

    If the guy specifically said it was NTSC then it is his fault and he should at the very least give you some money back to cover whatever solution you have to get to resolve the problem.
     
  3. ccunningham

    ccunningham Mu-43 Veteran

    453
    Jul 23, 2010
    Yeah, the product description definitely has the framerates for an NTSC region model, not the PAL region, but they didn't specifically mention the region in the description. I figured I could convert it with the right tool since people convert video framerates between 24p and 30p, but I would have rather just had what was described. Still, I ran a video sample at 25p and it looks good, which makes me think maybe I should just read up more on hacking it. I hadn't really felt the need to hack my gh2, so I maybe it's time to learn something new. From what I've read, it looks like the people who worked on the hacks for the gh1 did some really good work.
     
  4. youry

    youry Mu-43 Regular

    199
    Nov 9, 2010
    Winston Salem, NC
    First of all you can reverse the software and the seller wouldn't have any idea it has been tampered with.
    On the other hand, PAL or NTSC, it doesn't make a difference. If you know enough about the frame rates, I bet you know even more about post processing. You can easily save in whatever format you want in post.
    I'd stick with it or go with a G5. In G5's menu you have a speed option. You can choose 1/30, 1/60, 1/100 or 1/120. Indoor I use 1/60 and outdoor 1/120 and always 60p at 28MBs. Other than the 24p, the G5 is as good as the GH2. Unless you really need 100Mbs and a hacked GH2 is a must.
     
  5. ntblowz

    ntblowz Mu-43 Veteran

    312
    Nov 13, 2011
    Auckland, New Zealand
    I got myself a NTSC GH1 and hacked for the PAL since I live in PAL land, GH1 without hacking is really not too good since the bitrate is low (17Mbps vs 24Mbps on GH2)
     
  6. ccunningham

    ccunningham Mu-43 Veteran

    453
    Jul 23, 2010
    It all makes me wonder how we ended up with so many different standards for power, which is I think the reason for these differences. If I understand the reason ntsc is 30/60 is because ac power was originally (and still) 60Hz where ntsc was adopted. But pal is 25/50 since it was adopted in arears where ac was cycling at 50Hz.
    Oh well, I think I might just return it, after shipping I paid about 550USD and that's almost half of a gh3, maybe I should just save up fir 4-6 months more and get a gh3. It bugs me that the seller didn't describe it correctly, and since the manuals were conveniently missing, along with anything else that would have clearly indicated it was a pal unit, I'm beginning to think they knew what they were selling.
     
  7. youry

    youry Mu-43 Regular

    199
    Nov 9, 2010
    Winston Salem, NC
    At $550 I'd return it right away. It might not be easy to resell it as an NTSC camera even if you alter the software. The box shows the region the camera works in.
    Make sure you go through Ebay and file a claim. Don't take their word the money will be refunded once they receive the camera. Cover yourself by taking some pictures of the content when you pack it. You never know who you're dealing with.
     
  8. speedandstyle

    speedandstyle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    You are correct about why NTSC and PAL are different, there is a third type called SECAM{similar to PAL}. The USA, Canada, Central America and some of South America plus Japan and a few other Pacific places use 60 Hz electricity. The rest of the world uses 50 Hz power. To make things worse voltage differs too! But in the old analog systems you had to match the video frequency to the electricity or bad things would happen. It isn't as critical for digital. Here is a map showing where NTSC and PAL are used, from wikipedia.

    800px-PAL-NTSC-SECAM.svg.
     
  9. ccunningham

    ccunningham Mu-43 Veteran

    453
    Jul 23, 2010
    It was sold as "new - missing box", so the box wasn't included, but still, at 550 for the correct region, I was willing to buy it, but grey market and for the wrong region, I'm not willing to pay 550. And mainly for the reasons you mention.
     
  10. ccunningham

    ccunningham Mu-43 Veteran

    453
    Jul 23, 2010

    Exactly, and I keep wondering why everyone couldn't just get on the same system. Says someone who lives in the US and still can't understand why we haven't converted over to metric like the rest of the world. Except for maybe Liberia and Burma, the last time I checked.
     
  11. speedandstyle

    speedandstyle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Same electrical or video? Or both? I wish they would standardize video codecs better, there are dozens and dozens of them. In my mind there should be just four. One highly compressed for web and phone type use, one for general personal use, one for pro use but with some compression and then RAW.

    It could be worse we could have blueray and all the other enhanced HD disc formats they tried{there were half a dozen}. The deciding factor for blueray was Walmart! It seems that Walmart said they would only sell one type and they picked blueray. Since Walmart accounts about 66%+ of the world's DVD sales, we ended up with blueray. I guess it could have been worse! The reason we got VHS over beta was because the porn industry picked VHS.
     
  12. ccunningham

    ccunningham Mu-43 Veteran

    453
    Jul 23, 2010
    Initially electric, but later on TV, etc. Like I said, I still can't figure out why there hasn't been more push for metric adoption here in the US. When I was a kid, there was a brief period where it seemed like we were starting down the path of adopting metric(like almost everyone else in the world) but that fizzled out.