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Customer Review

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Camera I've Ever Used, February 6, 2011
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This review is from: Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2KK 16.05 MP Live MOS Mirrorless Digital Camera with 3-inch Free-Angle Touch Screen LCD and 14-42mm Lens (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer) (Camera)
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 16.05 MP Live MOS Interchangeable Lens Camera with 3-inch Free-Angle Touch Screen LCD and 14-42mm Hybrid Lens (Black)My GH2 arrived this week from Amazon and I'm nothing but delighted with the quality and versatility of the outfit. I worked my way through college photographing weddings, sports event and beauty queen pagents, and turning out more than 1,000 enlargements a month. My experience goes back to the 4x5" Crown Graphics, Rollies, Canons, Nikons, etc., and has gone through uninterruptibly more than a dozen digital cameras including the Lumix G1& GH-1. Suffice to say that this is the BEST and MOST VERSITILE camera I've ever owned or borrowed.

For still photography, it offers a devestating combination of quality and portability. Thanks to a year with the GH1, I've got the 14-140mm and 20mm lenses, and thanks to this purchase the 14-42mm lens as well. All perform admirably and I'm really loath to leave any of them behind when I go out shooting. And, thanks to their small form factors and low weight, I don't have to abondon any of my beauties! Rather, the body and all 3 lenses fit nicely in a Lowepro Nova 180 AW bag, along with a Blackrapid camera sling (that I consider a "must" purchase) and all the normal accessories including the charger, lens shades & filters -- and the total package weighs just under 5 pounds!

It took me only a day to dispell the reluctance I had experienced about spending $100 more for the kit with the 14-42 lens. "Wasn't this overkill," I thought. No way! Yesterday I was doing observations of a Los Angeles Regional Youth Orchestra program and more-or-less on a whim I decided to do a real-life fieldtest of my purchase. I mounted the 14-42 mm lens for this indoor assignment because the 14-140 -- although it has tremendous "reach" and produces very sharp images -- was slower in aperature and relatively heavy and would have been in the way when I had to take notes on a clipboard. And, the 20mm -- although blazingly fast, light and producing terrific quality images -- didn't have the "reach" I needed to shoot in an indoor gym that was about 50x150 feet with action going on all around.

In this case the 14-42 turned out to be an ideal compromise. It was only slightly heavier and larger than the 20mm 1.7 lens, and yet it was a full stop faster than the 14-140 zoom and had the "anti-shake" mechanism that the 20mm lens lacks (thus making up for most of the 1.7 lens' speed advantage). Consequantly, it was the perfect lens for this well-lighted, large indoor venue. Also, when I put it video mode it performed beautifully and I was able to shoot video clips that I'll use to supplement my written observations which -- by themselves -- I now perceive as being hopelessly dry and uniformative compared to embedding video clips with my writing.

When I go back to shooting sailboat races where you have to zoom in on boats that may be from 3' to 300' away from your lens, I'll suck it up and lug the 14-140; when I need to shoot people indoors incompspicuously under poor lighting conditions, I'll give thanks for the 20mm 1.7 lens; but for assignments such as yesterday's, the 14-42 mm zoom was perfect for the job.

One other thing about the 14-42mm lens -- it's lighter and more "plasticy" than the 14-45mm zoom it replaced on the GH1, but frankly I think it's better both from the standpoints of quality and portability. I sold off my 14-45 lens after only a month of use; but based on yesterday's results I think the 14-42 is a keeper.

More important than any of the above comments: I'm finding the GH2 is a "game-changer" for any of us still photographers that write for a living and suddenly realizes that they can can enrich everything from research reports, to travelogues, to product reviews with generous doses of video. I didn't feel that way about my halting efforts to produce videos with the GH1, but the videos I was able to turn out yesterday without ever reading the manual makes me a fan of gh2 videos for life -- or at least until the next generation arrives! Also, don't even talk to me about competitors that don't have high-quality optical-style viewfinders; I don't view them as being worth considering for anything that smacks of "seriuous work."

Finally -- please note that I haven't gone into any technical data relating to the gh2's performance or more rigorous comparisons to the other ways you can blow $1000-$2500 on your next camera. For this kind of info, just go to the review on digitalcamera-hq.com which is the most useful and even-handed review I've seen. They too consider the gh2 to be a game-changer for lots of reasons, but they also point out some things that Panasonic will need to fix via firmware updates or in the next generation of these fantastic cameras.
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Showing 1-5 of 5 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 5, 2011 11:50:16 AM PST
Where did you find this camera? Not sure why they're seemingly unavailable in the US with the longer lens pkg.

Thanks

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 6, 2011 8:47:39 AM PST
I bought the camera from Amazon with the 42-45mm lens. I had previously purchased the 14-140 mm lens for use with my GH-1; the body of which I sold on eBay when the GH-2 arrival was emminant. I'd recommend going with body only, or with the 14-42 mm lens and then pick up the 14-140 by itself, or used. I find I invariably start out using the 14-140, but in many cases switch to the 14-42 and/or the 20mm 1.7 partway through a day of shooting; especially when I'm on tours where the 14-140's weight sometimes become burdensom. I like all 3 lenses a lot!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 6, 2011 8:47:40 AM PST
I bought the camera from Amazon with the 42-45mm lens. I had previously purchased the 14-140 mm lens for use with my GH-1; the body of which I sold on eBay when the GH-2 arrival was emminant. I'd recommend going with body only, or with the 14-42 mm lens and then pick up the 14-140 by itself, or used. I find I invariably start out using the 14-140, but in many cases switch to the 14-42 and/or the 20mm 1.7 partway through a day of shooting; especially when I'm on tours where the 14-140's weight sometimes become burdensom. I like all 3 lenses a lot!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 6, 2011 8:57:22 AM PST
That's very helpful Steven. How is the quality of the 14-42? It also seems like buying the 14-140 is a much more expensive proposition than buying it with the camera.

Posted on Mar 16, 2011 11:21:32 PM PDT
E. Lopez says:
Can someone tell me if this camera could be used for professional use. I would also like to use my high grade Zuiko/Olympus lenses on this camera. I would like to hear some feedback on this issue
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