It arrived a little later than Panasonic said it would but the Panasonic Lumix GH6 is finally here. Our colleagues at Imaging Resource, Digital Photo Pro‘s sister site, got their hands on this long-awaited flagship Micro Four Thirds camera from Panasonic and shared some initial impressions here.
Panasonic first announced details of the GH6 back in May 2021, saying it would feature a new image sensor and processing engine and it does: a 25.2MP Micro Four Thirds sensor with AR coating and no optical low-pass filter alongside a new Venus Engine processor with two times the speed. The higher resolution Live MOS sensor in the GH6 increases the effective pixel count over the GH5 and GH5 II by more than 20%.
For videographers, the GH6 can shoot 10-bit 4K 120p HFR video, 4:2:2 10-bit DCI 4K 60p video with unlimited recording time, and 10-bit 5.7K 60p capture. The Panasonic GH6 can also shoot at a 10-bit 4K 120p High Frame Rate (HFR) and Variable Frame Rate (VFR) for high resolution slow/quick motion video. The new sensor in the GH6 also promises reduced rolling shutter thanks to faster chip readout.
And thanks to the more powerful new Venus Engine processor, the native ISO of the GH6 is now 100-25,600 for stills and 100-12,800 for video, with an extension down to ISO 50 for both shooting modes. Panasonic said the GH6’s new processor will also help tamp down noise at higher ISOs despite the increase in resolution and resulting smaller pixels.
What the GH6 can’t do though might disappoint some photographers. The camera’s new sensor does not have phase-detection autofocusing pixels, instead relying on Panasonic’s familiar contrast-detection-based autofocus system, known as Depth-from-Defocus AF. The GH6, however, does incorporate new AF algorithms that offer faster performance, Panasonic said. The GH6 also has more AF zones/areas than the GH5, up to 315 from the 225.
Below is a rundown of what we know about the GH6 based on Panasonic’s announcement last night and Imaging Resource‘s early hands-on review.
- 25.2-megapixel Four Thirds sensor with AR Coating and no optical low-pass filter
- New Venus Engine processor with 2x processing speed
- Updated DFD-based AF with 315 AF points/areas
- ISO Range: 100-25600 (native); Low expanded ISO: 50, 64, 80
- 7.5-stop 5-axis Dual I.S. 2 image stabilization system
- 100MP Handheld High-Res Shooting mode
- Up to 75fps continuous burst shooting with AFS mode
- 5.7K 60p 10-bit
- 4:2:2 10-bit 4K up to 60p
- 10-bit Full HD up 300fps
- Apple ProRes 422 internal recording
- 13+ stops of dynamic range in video with new Dynamic Range Boost Mode
- Unlimited video recording time in all resolutions and frame rates
- Built-in active cooling fan, but still weather-sealed
- 3680k-dot OLED EVF
- Tilt and vari-angle touchscreen with 1840k-dot LCD
- Dual card slots (CFExpress Type B, UHS-II SD)
The Panasonic GH6 will go on sale in mid-March 2022 for $2200 (USD, body only) and as a kit with a Leica 12-60mm F2.8-4 lens for $2,799. Read Imaging Resource‘s full hands-on review of the Panasonic Lumix GH6 here. The launch of the Panasonic GH6 comes on the heels of another Micro Four Thirds flagship introduction, the OM-1 from OM Digital Solutions (formerly Olympus), proving that these smaller MFT sensor-based cameras are still alive and kicking.