MFT cameras - GH5 Panasonic - Lens choice


#1

I’m using a couple of the Panasonic GH5 for shooting studio video interviews. This camera has worked well and is probably better that what I deserve for my knowledge and skill level. It’s a micro four thirds CCD model with a 2x ‘crop factor’ (2x mag over a standard 35 mm CCD with standard lenses).

We bought the two GH5’s as packaged with the Leica 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0 zoom lens. The lens has worked out well for our needs. At times I wished we had a faster lens for closeups in order to reduce focal depth.

Now I’m looking at an additional camera. Possibly also the GH5 vs the GH5S, the latter optimized for video.

I’ll also mention that this camera is, unlike all others in this form factor, enabled for unlimited video shoot time with on one continuous vs the lousy 20 minute auto stop of others imposed in some fashion by tariffs or whatever re video vs still cameras. I would never buy a camera for video with an auto shut off like that.

I have found someone selling a GH5S as a bundle with a Metabones speed booster adapter. This is a device that adapts a ‘full frame lens’ intended for 35mm CCD between the lens mount of the full lens and the specific camera mechanical mount and CCD size. In this case - Canon <–> MFT. It gives a speed and crop factor multiple of 0.7. That is, the f number is improved multiplied by 0.7 while the crop factor is multiplied by this factor. So on the GH5, the crop factor with the Metabones adapter would be 2x0.7=1.4 with a Canon lens and the f number would be improved by (1/0.7 = 1.4) Just a coincidence they both equal 1.4, BTW.

Sorry to ramble on about the details above . … just in case you don’t know how it works . … I have to read about it each time to confirm which way to calculate.

So I could look at just staying strictly with MFT lenses or consider the ‘package’ with the camera and adapter, which would give the option of using Canon plus MFT. BTW I have no Canon lenses and no other MFT lenses except the zooms we have on the other cameras. There seem to be few MFT fast lens choices and there are plenty of Canon lenses although I’m no expert on them.

Please discuss if you have some thoughts on this.


#2

Here’s an interesting video or two about crop factor.


#3

Hey, thanks, that’s an excellent summary. The metabones adapter introduces another factor and it’s a favorable one in that it increases the light a bit and reduces the magnification Factor so while a crop factor of 2 for example on a camera reduces the effective light input of a non-native lens the metabones tends to counter this effect a little bit. So I’m just thinking about whether makes any sense at all to go with a package deal and use full frame lenses or go with mft lenses so still unsure about thinking about it thank you


#4

You’re welcome.

Yup. I think the increasing the light is the biggest advantage. You can generally do something about the focal length but the F stop limitation is harder to work around.

My takeaway was generally you want to use MFT/APSC/FF lenses for the bodies they were meant to be used with(to take advantage of what the format brings to the table in portability); And while you can use FF lenses on MFT/APSC there may or may not be as sharp/er than a dedicated lens for the format you use. Testing the lens before you own to see if it works for your needs, is also another takeaway.
Some choose to buy FF lenses to use on their MFT/APSC to"future proof" their lenses for the time they switch(if they have plans) to FF too.
The biggest advantage of going FF IMO is that you have more leeway in cropping vs the smaller formats if you shoot subjects that are further out from you.


#5

I might even consider another camera but this Panasonic is the only one I know of that is either a DSLR or Mirrorless and has unlimited recording time. Sadly there are some very nice cameras that have imposed the time limit due to the tariff on video cameras. Too bad there are no firmware hacks to undo the terrible feature of the time limit on various models.

Do you know of other DSLR or Mirrorless form factor cameras with unlimited clip time? I would not object to a FF camera but the GH5 has some really great features for video and shoots some high quality footage. And the GH5S is now out and is even more optimized for video.


#6

I don’t. I hardly take videos, but it’s good to know that Panasonic has chosen the road that the other brands don’t want to.