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GH2 - 2016
  • I can get a used GH2 for about 250$. Is a hacked GH2 today in 2016 still one of the best videocameras, if I don't want to use 4k?

  • 65 Replies sorted by
  • I recentely had to get one because my GH3 and rest of gear was stolen. Before that I had a G6 and before a 50D with raw magic lantern. The image of the hacked GH2 is pretty darn good in good light with nice filmic grain and high level of detail. Its not nearly as good as newer cams above 800 iso, very noisy. Monitoring is also not very good, the evf and screen are showing their age. The body is plastic and less rugged than gh3/4 with small grip. Phisical controls on the cam are great and as good or better than GH3. For me no 1080p60 is a bummer but you may not need it depending on what you want to shot. In photo, the camera feels very slugish with super long buffer to card times when shoting raw.

    If you can find an offer, I would get a G6 instead of the GH2

    hope it can help!

  • Thank you Adam for your advice. GH2 is nothing special today even with the hack, if I understand you. My favorite camera is my Leica X2 and I have a GM1, a GX7 too. Today I realy want the Leica X-U... So I better save the money for that one. :)

  • the gh multi-ratio sensor is unique, and you can bet pany will introduce a leica copy at 1/4 the price !

  • If you don't need 4K, then get G6 PAL Asian version or G6 NTSC version. The two do not have video recording time limit. It will act like a camcorder.

  • @Pluttiplutt at $250 yes it's still the best camera, were you asking at any price point? GH2 has a sensor which delivers both sharpness and an organic look, which went away in later models as they moved to Sony sensors. If you can put up with its limitations (you have to light, it's not an "available light" camera) wondrous things can come out of it. Then again if you're at the level where you light scenes properly to compress scene DR, you likely wouldn't use the GH2 unless you're on a hard budget. A bit of a catch-22 that.

    The point I'm making is by the time you stage your shoot to make it look very good the camera body is one of the cheaper line items. True for $2500 bodies as well, not just $250.

  • I bought the used GH2 today with the lens H-FS014045 I got it for 200$. I wanted GH2 many years now and I feel it was a good price. If I put the hack in camera will it shoot photo as normal and the hack only effect video mode?

  • I have 4 GH2 bodies alone with a G6 and GX7 for video shoots. I prefer the GH2's look over the newer G6/GX7 when it comes to video, photos it's the other way around. And this "look" is real, not some voodoo. I tried using the same lenses on a GH2 and the G6, with all the settings exactly the same, and the results from the two cameras are different. I would say as far as 1080p is concerned, GH2 is still up there in terms of quality.

  • hack affects only video.

  • Thanks for all reply. I am happy at last I got my own GH2

  • I shot this on a GH2:

  • Super! Was the camera in original or hacked?

  • @dlzn Video looks great.

  • I had a gh2 and a Canon 50d too.

    Although could get fullhd and other than 24p on panasonic, I much prefer the raw footage from magic Lantern. Just DR wins, always.

  • One more quest!

    How can I find out if my used GH2 already has the hack in the firmware? Can I find it out some way in the menu? It says ver 1.1 but is it hacked or not? I know how to put the camera in service mode. The person i bought the camera from bought the camera also as used and do not know if the first owner did put a hacked firmware into the camera.

  • I don't think there is a way. But if you want to go back to stock, just flash the stock firmware.

  • If I shall flash the files I must rename the files becuse it will not upgrade when it has the original name, I have alredy tried. What shall i name the files to cheat the camera?

    I can backup some ROM files in the service mode to the SD card. I know how to editera a .bin file but are there anything in the original .bin I should be looking for, that confirm it is not hacked or is there anything that confirm it is a hack in this files?

  • You can't see if the cam is hacked or not. But here on this forum there are plenty easy instructions how to hack your GH2. First install PTool on your computer. Then search for a hack on the forum. @Pluttiplutt

  • Read FAQs on this site. They explain how to do the hack.

  • A music video shot with gh2 flowmotion 14-42pz and slrmagic 35 1.7

  • @dlzn. Great work and I really like colour palate. It reminded me of the look of 1970s movies. Would you mind sharing how you graded it?

  • Thanks to everybody for all advice.

    Now, I am sure I have a unhacked GH2. To learn my new used camera takes a while, then I will hack it.

    Today I will update again and mark "30 min limit removal" "PAL NTSC menu" "Maximum ISO limit removal" and "All Interface Languages.

    Nice video @dlzn

    P.S. Yes, my secondhand camera was probobly at first hacked, becouse it had "All Interface Languages" and "PAL NTSC menu" when I first got the camera. I am not 100% but 99% sure, after I made a restore without the hack everything with the menu work perfect. Now I can start from scratch with my wonderful GH2 camera. But as B/W camera my favorite is still my Leica X1 and color camera X2 but as videocam mabe GH2 from now. :) D.S.

  • I think the GH2 still provides the best option there is at its price point.

    To get better you'd have to spend more, I reckon the next small step up the ladder in terms of cost would be a second hand Nikon D5200 / Sony A5100 / Panasonic G6. (and of course heaps and heaps of options at even higher price points: GH4/NX1/G7/A7s/URSA/A6300/F3/etc etc... sky is the limit!)

    Any of these would be a "better" camera than a GH2, but they all come at an increased cost, and they all come with their own different mix of pros/cons vs a GH2. For instance a very brief list of some cons of each vs a GH2:

    D5200) doesn't have a mirrorless mount or EVF

    G6) no live HDMI out

    A5100) overheats

    I wrote an intro gear guide for the GH2 recently:

    In brief I could strongly recommend to a filmmaker starting out to get a Panasonic GH2 with a video monopod and the Aputure FineHD VS-2 monitor (as for only US$279 you get a 7" 1920x1200 high resolution screen with focus peaking in different colours, false colour for exposure, histogram, zebras and audio level meters. AMAZING VALUE! There was nothing like this when the GH2 first shipped) plus a RJ Lens Turbo with these lenses (all in Nikon F mount):

    Tokina 11-20mm f/2.8 (or the cheaper 11-16mm), Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8, Nikon 50mm f/1.8D, Nikon 85mm f/1.8D, Vivitar 135mm f/2.8, Vivitar 28-90mm f/2.8-3.5

    All these lenses provide incredibly good value for money (even the Sigma! Which is by far the priciest lens out of this selection), and would be relevant for a long long time.

    This would stand a person well for the future too. As nobody will be using a GH2 to its full potential in their first year of filmmaking (or second, or third...). But when they do decide to upgrade in the future (such as to a GH5/BMMMC/D5/A6300/NX1/whatever) then it will be easy swap out of the GH2 for whatever else they get and they can carry on using the monitor and the lenses.

    Also if you decide to take up photography seriously you can easily pick up for cheap a Nikon D90 or D7000 to use with these lenses and to take great pics.