Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 sensor review: Heavyweight contender

By Kevin Carter - Thursday April 10 2014

Camera Review
Introduction | Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4: Best performing FT sensor in our database | Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 Versus Olympus OM-D E-M1 Versus Sony NEX-7: Competitive performance | Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 Versus Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 Versus Panasonic Lumix DMC GH2: Slight improvement in IQ over predecessor | Conclusion
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 sensor review: Heavyweight contender

Panasonic GH series of micro four-thirds cameras are some of the best all-round video and stills hybrid solutions currently available. Read on to find out how the new 4K capable Four Thirds sensor in GH4 performs.

As the successor to the popular and capable video-oriented Lumix DMC GH3 the new revamped model the GH4 adopts a similar 16-Mpix Live MOS sensor and familiar outer water-and-dust resistant magnesium alloy shell but it has several significant enhancements.

Both the EVF and rear swivel touchscreen LCD have been upgraded in resolution - the viewfinder, for example, up 614K dots from 1.7M to 2.36M, while a new more powerful quad-core Venus image processor has been employed to facilitate a new maximum 25,600 ISO setting and continuous shooting in Raw mode up to 12 fps (AF-S), 7 fps (AF-C), or up to 40 fps (without AF).

Like its predecessors, the GH4 also has expanded video-capture capabilities over other models in the range. The most significant and tempting features being in-camera 4K and Full HD capture with a range of resolutions, frame rates and high bit-rates. The 200 Mbps (All-I) high-bit rates refer to Full HD however, with 100 Mbps (IPB) being limited to 4K capture in a ‘cinematic’ 24p option at 4096 x 2160 or 3840 x 2160 at 30/24p. Curiously, both 4K modes have an option to record an 8.8-Mpix still during capture.

The GH4 can also be paired with an optional interface unit – a large battery grip like accessory that adds a raft of industry-standard ports that are simply too large to build into the relatively compact body of the camera. The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 measures 5.2 x 3.7 x 3.3" / 132.9 x 93.4 x 83.9 mm and weighs 19.75 oz / 560 g. It is available for pre-order at $1,699 body only.

Key specifications

  • 16-Mpix Live-MOS sensor
  • 12 fps continuous shooting with AF-S (up to 40fps without)
  • 49-point Contrast Detect AF
  • 0.39-inch 2.36-M dot OLED EVF
  • 3.0-inch 1.03-M dot tilt and swivel OLED
  • DCI 4K (4096 x 2160) at 24p
  • UHD 4K 3840 x 2160 at 30/24p
  • Full HD up to 60p
  • 4:2:2 8-Bit or 10-Bit via HDMI
  • Wi-Fi connectivity with NFC
  • Magnesium alloy, weather-sealed body

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4: Best performing FT sensor in our database

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 Versus Olympus OM-D E-M1 Versus Sony NEX-7: Competitive performance

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 Versus Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 Versus Panasonic Lumix DMC GH2: Slight improvement in IQ over predecessor

Conclusion