Should I upgrade from GH1 to G5?

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by bwidjaja, Dec 10, 2012.

  1. bwidjaja

    bwidjaja Mu-43 Regular

    67
    May 30, 2012
    My main aim is better high ISO performance. At this point I am only considering Panny G5 because of cost/value.

    What am I gaining / losing from upgrading GH1 to G5?
    Note that I am a basic video user; so not a major factor yet.
     
  2. LDBecker

    LDBecker Mu-43 Rookie

    14
    Dec 8, 2012
    Note the price drop on the G5!

    I would really encourage the G5 - had one for a little over a month and enjoy it quite a lot. Someone on another forum pointed out a SIGNIFICANT price drop on the camera on Amazon (and also a good a rebate on B&H).

    This is a great little camera... you get faster, more capable processing on the G5, and then there's those 4 extra megapixels. Going from 12 to 16 is awfully significant.

    Larry
     
  3. gcogger

    gcogger Mu-43 Veteran

    342
    May 25, 2010
    UK
    Graeme
    The G5 is better for high ISO noise in my view, both in the amount of noise and it's character (it's less offensive on the G5). What you lose is a number of physical controls, which makes the G5 a little more awkward to use.

    No, it isn't :)
     
  4. addieleman

    addieleman Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 5, 2010
    The Netherlands
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    Actually, I think you won't be better off with a G5 compared to a GH1 when it comes to high ISO performance. DxOMark shows very comparable results between the G5 and GH2 (essentially same sensor) and the GH1.

    The G5 may be better in terms of handling and responsiveness, although I decided to stick with my GH2 after having tried the G5 in a store.
     
  5. gcogger

    gcogger Mu-43 Veteran

    342
    May 25, 2010
    UK
    Graeme
    That's one of the reasons I don't pay much attention to dxomark. The G5 and GH2 are virtually identical, but when I replaced my GH1 with a GH2 there was a clear improvement. Whatever dxomark measure, I repeatedly find it has little relevance to real world use - for me, of course. (And yes, I shoot RAW).
     
  6. LDBecker

    LDBecker Mu-43 Rookie

    14
    Dec 8, 2012
    Megapixels

    Ok - for non-cropped shots PRINTED up to 5x7 or maybe 8x10, you're probably right. And MOST people, if they bother to print at all, don't ever go beyond that. For screen or web output at 100 dpi or so, who cares? Heck, 5 mp is enough! And don't get me started on the nasty results you sometimes get when you send raw files that have been edited on a calibrated system to get printed on a commercial printer that's set up for printing ooc jpgs. It sometimes looks pretty funky, and even embarassing ("Eww! My P&S shots look better than this!").

    I print ALL my own shots on an Epson 4880 with an ImagePrint RIP (PS 6.0, ACR), and I routinely crop shots as needed. I want to throw (native, not interpolated) 300 dpi at the printer whenever I can, and the more MP the better... I could SERIOUSLY tell a difference between the shots taken by my Canon 1DIII (10 mp) and my 5DII (at 21 mp). Making 16x20 prints, while they might look "fine" from an older tech 12 mp camera, have (ok subjectively) a sharper, deeper, more clear look and feel.

    Honestly, though, these new "hybrid" cameras are likely to be used more for video and mixed online media, so I feel a little out of place as someone who has tried to learn the craft of printing over the past 8-10 years and 8 or so different printers. I should probably just shut up and read rather than post.

    Sorry to say such a controversial thing (that a 33% increase in mp is significant!) on my first post on this site - I'll try to be less subjective... and take less bait... :redface:

    Larry
     
  7. gcogger

    gcogger Mu-43 Veteran

    342
    May 25, 2010
    UK
    Graeme
    Don't worry, I was just having a bit of fun :)

    Maybe we should quantify things. If you print at 9 x 12 on the GH1, then at best you'll get the same quality (or at least the same ppi) at 10.4 x 13.9 on the G5. That's assuming you're using a lens that thoroughly outresolves the sensor - if not, the improvement will be even less. I see that as a fairly minor difference, rather than "awfully significant", but we all have our own priorities.

    On the comparison between the Canon 1DIII and the 5DII, the latter camera also has a larger sensor, which gives its own benefits.
     
  8. LDBecker

    LDBecker Mu-43 Rookie

    14
    Dec 8, 2012
    Good! :smile:
    Well, if you're going to do the math and get all technical - where's the fun in that?!? I think I like you!

    It's actually worse than that - pixel peeping aside, when you look at a large print from a reasonable viewing distance, the differences disappear really quickly.

    Maybe more to the point, the improvements in the camera's ability to process the files improves, along with the dynamic range of the sensors. This was quite evident in Canon's line - going from the IDII to the IDIII to the 5D, wow - the speed of the camera (focusing, writing) and quality of the files really improved. When I have to edit old files from previous cameras, the files seem to fall apart pretty quickly when I have to edit them significantly (shadow noise becomes more prominent and ugly, flesh tones not as nice, white balance is harder to tame, highlights blow out more quickly, details seem smeary - again, pretty subjective stuff, but real enough to me).

    So, all things being equal, the improvements in sensors and processing engines in the cameras should show a nice improvement in files and would be reason enough to jump up a generation or two in cameras. Add to that a 33% bump in megapixels, and it's significant TO ME...

    Larry
     
  9. bwidjaja

    bwidjaja Mu-43 Regular

    67
    May 30, 2012
    Thanks everyone for the feedback so far. Ok so it sounds like G5 is better than GH1 in terms of high ISO.

    My follow up question would be how much better is it? For example, I usually attempt to limit myself to ISO 800 in GH1. How high can I go without image is starting to be unusable?

    Finally, if I have to choose between spending money on G5 (on sale right now) vs getting Oly 45mm lens (can always buy later), which would you recommend?
     
  10. While the dynamic range in raw of the GH1 is very real, it is anomalous that it was scored above the GH2/G5 for noise by DxOMark. It is better than the original 12MP sensor m4/3 bodies to be sure, but you will uncover banding if you need to push any shadow at ISO 1600 and above.

    I recently had an issue with my GH1 that almost led to me having to replace it (thankfully not in the end), and had that been necessary I would have bought anothr GH1 instead of the GH2 and G5. On a number of levels the two newer cameras should be the better cameras, but I was reluctant to risk losing the sweet spot of the GH1 sensor at ISO 800 and below.
     
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