March 3rd, 2009.
Panasonic today announced the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1, a Four Thirds Micro System interchangeable lens camera that serves as a step up from the Panasonic G1 announced last year.
The Lumix G1H features a 12.1MP Live MOS sensor, the option of recording full HD 1080p (1920x1080) movies in the AVCHD format at 24 fps, and includes both an electronic viewfinder and a 3.0-inch high resolution 460K tilt / swivel LCD screen.
The main new stand out feature of the Panasonic LUMIX GH1 however, is that it provides cutting-edge video recording features, including the ability to record high-resolution full HD (1920 x 1080) video at 24 fps or smooth HD video (1280 x 720) movie at 60 fps using an AVCHD format. The AVCHD format provides the benefit of doubling the HD quality recording time compared with Motion JPEG.
Using only 12.1-megapixel
of the total 14.0-megapixel Live MOS sensor, the Lumix DMC-GH1 gives you
the ability to shoot in multi-aspect ratios of 4:3, 3:2, and 16:9, as
well as a new 1:1 mode. The new mode provides unique, square-shaped photos.
The 16:9 ratio is optimal for HDTV playback, while maintaining the same
angle of view.
New High-Performance Kit Lens for the Panasonic Lumix GH1
The Panasonic Lumix GH1 kit comes supplied with the Lumix G Vario HD 14-140mm / f4-5.8 O.I.S. zoom lens. This compact lens boasts a focal length of 28-280mm (35mm camera equivalent) and supports a continuous auto focus function that works for both photos and movies.
The aperture adjusts to each scene, letting you capture the kind of shallow depth of field movies that only a digital interchangeable lens camera can produce. Thanks to a silence design that helps suppress lens drive noise, the Lumix DMC-GH1 with its new kit lens records sounds with enhanced clarity.
The MEGA O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) that's built into the LUMIX G Vario HD 14-140mm f/4-.5.8 lens detects and compensates for blurring caused by hand-shake.
It also works for zoom shots and macro shots, which are especially susceptible to hand-shake, and lets you shoot in dimly lit rooms or evening illumination, without a flash, to preserve the mood. With the DMC-GH1, you can select from one of three three stabilization modes to suits your needs.
Like the Panasonic G1 the Lumix GH1 accepts not only Micro Four Thirds System interchangeable lenses, but also conventional Four Thirds System lenses (when an optional adapter is mounted). This means that users can continue to use Four Thirds lenses they may already own.
Full-time Live View Viewfinder and Vari-Angle 3.0-inch 460,000-Dot Anti-Reflective LCD Monitor
The GH1 features a high-resolution 1,440,000-dot equivalent Live View Finder. The Lumix DMC-GH1 offers Full-time Live View whether you are viewing the LCD or using the electronic viewfinder.
The Panasonic Lumix GH1 camera's viewfinder system retains the flexibility of an optical viewfinder and can also display information about camera settings that the user can see without taking his or her eye from the subject.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1 features a large 3.0-inch and high resolution 460,000-dot LCD, that rotates 180º horizontally and 270º. The swivel / tilt LCD monitor provides a comfortable and practical view for high-angle shots, like when you need to shoot over the heads of people at a parade, or for artistic low-angle shots, like when shooting at nearly ground level.
A wide range of settings - like Movable Guidelines, a Real-Time Histogram, and auto and manual focus (AF/MF) functions available on the Panasonic DMC-GH1 can help you to compose your shots.
Full Time Contrast AF System
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1 introduces a Contrast Auto Focus (AF) system that allows users to choose from a wide range of AF modes, including multipoint AF with up to 23 focus points, 1-area AF with a selectable focus point, Face Detection, and Tracking AF.
When 1-area AF is selected, the AF frame size can be changed from Spot to Extra Large in 4 steps by simply turning a dial. When the Direct 1-area AF Shift function is turned on, the Up, Down, Right and Left buttons are active, providing easy, intuitive operation.
* Lenses other than
LUMIX G lenses cannot use the Tracking AF, AFc (Auto Focus Continuous)
or Continuous AF functions. Also, when a lens that does not support the
Contrast AF function is mounted, operation will automatically switch to
iA Intelligent Mode for Both Still Images and HD Movie Recording
The Panasonic DMC-GH1 features the same iA (Intelligent Auto) Mode as the Panasonic Lumix compact models. For ease of use simply select iA Mode then point and shoot. 7 detection and correction functions are simultaneously activated to optimize the settings, so you can concentrate on capturing the subject.
On the DMC-GH1 the iA (Intelligent Auto) Mode is also available in movie recording mode . iA Mode automatically and simultaneously activates 4 detection functions: MEGA O.I.S. to detect hand-shake, Face Detection AF/AE to detect faces in the frame, Intelligent Scene Selector to detect scene conditions, and Intelligent Exposure to detect the ambient light.
The Face Detection function of the Lumix DMC-GH1 has evolved with the new Face Recognition feature, which memorizes a specific person's face and automatically focuses on it. (Possible to register up to 6 faces)
The Face Detection function
detects up to 15 faces in a scene at a time, making it convenient for
group photos. Once the camera detects a face, Face Tracking follows it
even when the subject moves around. Plus, the system is designed to keep
on detecting if a face turns sideways to the camera.
Intelligent Exposure function
The Intelligent Exposure function on the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1 increases the exposure only in under-exposed areas by detecting the brightness level part-by-part in the picture. If the background includes the sky, which tends to be easily washed out, the camera automatically adjusts the aperture and shutter speed to keep the setting slightly under-exposed to prevent wash-out while brightening the darkened area by increasing the ISO only in that area.
If the background of an indoor portrait receives insufficient lighting from a flash and becomes dark, the ISO sensitivity is raised in only the low-lit area to make it brighter without causing graininess in the subject's face.
The setting automatically switches to standard in iA Mode. Also, in P/A/S/M Mode you can adjust the intended effect in three levels high, standard or low. When there is strong backlighting, the background appears nice and bright, but the subject is dark. This function detects backlight condition and compensates it automatically in iA Mode.
Intelligent ISO Control function
You can set the ISO sensitivity to Auto, Intelligent ISO, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600 or 3200. When the ISO sensitivity step is set to 1/3 EV, the number of ISO sensitivity setting options increases, allowing you to make fine adjustments and achieve the level of image quality you want.
Intelligent ISO Control in the Lumix DMC-GH1 detects subject movement and automatically adjusts the ISO setting and shutter speed to best suit the movement and light conditions. When it detects subject motion, it automatically raises the ISO setting and increases the shutter speed to prevent motion blur. On the other hand, when the subject is still and no movement is detected, it takes natural photos with a low ISO setting.
Select either ISO 200, 400, 800 or 1600 as the maximum ISO sensitivity. The maximum sensitivity setting is applied to the Intelligent ISO Control and ISO AUTO functions. This ensures that you'll get the level of image quality you want by letting you set your own limit for ISO sensitivity.
Auto Scene and Manual Exposure Control Modes for Creative Control
Mode function on the DMC-GH1 lets you quickly select from Portrait, Scenery,
Sports, Night Portrait, or Close-up Modes by simply using the mode dial.
And each of these modes can be fine-tune selected to further match the
shooting situation. Creative Mode also lets you adjust the aperture or
shutter speed, for easy manual control. When pressing the Motion Picture
button, the optimal Movie Scene Mode is automatically selected.
Two finely customized
settings can be stored as 2 MY FILM settings, for easy recall and use.
Multi-Film Mode allows you to produce up to 3 different images using different
film modes in one go. Possible to produce both color and black & white
Consecutive Shooting and Auto Bracketing
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1 lets you snap off unlimited consecutive shots at approx. 3 frames per second with full resolution. The DMC-GH1 also allows consecutive shots to be taken at up to 3 fps when shooting in RAW fle format.
The Auto Bracket function records several images at varied exposure levels in a compensation range of ±EV 2 in 1/3 EV or 2/3 EV steps. The GH1 will record up to 7 images with a single press of the shutter button. Then you can select your favorite photo from the different exposure settings.
Custom White Balance Control
The Panasonic DMC-GH1 offers white balance fine tuning adjustment settings for Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Shade, Flash, or Halogen conditions. Fine tuning is also available when adjusting the Color Temperature Setting or White Balance Preset function. For point and shoot ease of use White Balance control can simply be left in Auto.
If desired you can adjust on the horizontal axis for amber to blue and the vertical axis for green to magenta. There is also a white balance bracketing feature, which allows you to automatically shoots 3 consecutive photos with slight changes to the white balance setting of each photo.
Built-in Auto Pop Up Flash and External Hot Shoe
Slideshow with Music and Transition Effects played back with HDMI connection
The DMC-GH1 can play a slideshow with music. Choose from 4 types of effect with music: Natural, Slow, Swing and Urban. Then, select the transition effect to match your music.
You can also use the optional RP-CDHM15 / CDHM30 mini HDMI cable to connect the camera to an HDTV for large-screen viewing. For musical slideshows created with the included PHOTOfunSTUDIO 3.1 HD Edition, you can choose your favorite iTunes music file as background music.
PHOTOfunSTUDIO 3.1 HD Edition software
AVCHD movies can be transferred to a PC from an SDHC/SD Memory Card or via the USB cable to view or even edit them. You can also make a DVD disc from the AVCHD files by converting them to MPEG-2.
The software also lets you edit or organize a collection of photos with more ease and fun. It features a Face Recognition function that recognizes the faces in the pictures stored in your PC to sort them by faces for you regardless of the camera type you used.
Through the interface, you can also enjoy slideshows with a variety of effects and music. Motion images can also be uploaded directly to YouTube.
Dust Reduction System
The Dust Reduction System in the Lumix DMC-GH1 helps minimize any dust issues by placing a Supersonic Wave Filter in front of the Live MOS sensor, between the low-pass filter and shutter.
Every time the camera is switched on, the filter vibrates around 50,000 times per second to repel dust and other particles without affecting the camera's internal mechanisms, helping maintain image quality.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1 Other Features:
The My Menu tab automatically stores the five most recently used menu items, for quick, easy retrieval. The custom setting function can also be used to register a shortcut for a frequently used function; the function can then be activated by pressing the Fn (Down) button of the cursor key as seen above.