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Hacked GH1 vs. Hacked GH2
  • I couldn't find any existing topic on this matter. I have a hacked GH1 and I'm very happy with it. The hack and firmware settings seem rock steady (thanks LPowell and Vitaliy!). But now that the hack for the GH2 seems to be on the verge of getting perfected, settings-wise, what advantage would a hacked GH2 offer over the hacked GH1?

    The obvious ones seem to be the teleconverter feature and the possibility of live HDMI out. But what else? Are the videos better? Is the 24p a better codec and worth the upgrade? Is high ISO performance dramatically better? Or am I better off dropping $1000 towards lenses, lighting, stabilizers, focus followers, rig, etc? Or is the GH2 so sweet that I should be getting that body?

  • 86 Replies sorted by
  • The image quality is about the same, the GH2 has more features. Check out plasmasmp video, and see if the difference is important.
  • I'd invest in lenses, lighting, etc.
  • My biggest issue with the gh1 was vertical streaking in certain situations.

    Even if my subject was properly exposed as the light falls off the areas under exposed by 3 stops would show the streaking pretty hard.

    So that alone makes the gh2 more worthwhile to me.

    But maybe your gh1 doesn't have the issue as much.
  • yeah RoryB, that's the main reason why I got GH2. GH13 was perfect for me but the freakin FPN killed the whole damn thing...
  • At this point, the hacked GH1 has two unique features that the hacked GH2 lacks, and is not likely to acquire:

    1. Progressive 25p frame rate in both 1080p and 720p AVCHD modes.
    2. 4:2:2 color depth in MJPEG 30p mode.

    While the GH2 hack is still in its early stages, it already shows some promising advantages over the hacked GH1:

    1. Upgraded AVCHD encoder with highly efficient B-frames in both 1080p and 720p.
    2. Full-HD 1920x1080 frame size in MJPEG mode.
    3. SD card controller capable of recording video data reliably at over 100Mbps.
  • I think the colors and dynamic range are much better on the GH2. It looks like a 2-3 stop gain in latitude...
  • The GH13 at least has 50i PsF which was very convenient ...edit on time-line as 50i (for Bluray) or auto-convert to 25p for Broadcast, etc.

    I'm getting 35-45mbps 24p with the GH2 hacked...but with bad start-frames...and 50i is bullshit old fashioned interlace type with problems. So far as far as I'm concerned hacked GH2 only major advantage is in low light picture quality...better than GH13. Until start-frames corruption issue solved my GH2 stays home.
  • @LPowell ///3. SD card controller capable of recording video data reliably at over 100Mbps.///

    Do we have any chance to change this point on GH1? Is it software problem or we have hardware restriction?
  • GH13
    i used 25p native 44mb- occasional crashes with static shots
    1080 p mjpeg 50mbps (looks upscaled) crashes with 75mb +
    Fpn above iso 800
    Image detail loss at high iso
    Unstable and this can be a hassle if you want 1080p native footage for shoot

    I use 32mb settings (ITS NOT ALL ABOUT HIGH BITRATES!!) start frame corruptions videos look vastly better than GH13 both in 24p & all other film modes.
    720p 50 kills GH1s 720p in terms of image resolve
    Full Hd mpeg...actually looks like 1080p and around 130mbs with no card errors
    No crashes
    No fpn
    no hassles

  • Everyone has opinions.. Here's mine.

    I haven't bothered with anything but 24p footage.

    In every test I did, the stock GH2 beat a hacked GH1. We shot part of a movie with hacked GH1s and the rest with a stock GH2. Comparing the two while editing, while similar enough to cut together, was easy to determine a clear winner.

    The GH2 just looked better all around. Less noise, less banding, more sharpness. It was much easier to use too as HDMI out and higher ISO without noise allowed us to be more creative with lighting and using things like cranes. Unless you've shot a real production with the GH2 and HDMI out, there is no real way to express just how much easier it is to work using real external monitors.

    This, combined with the fact that i don't have to do pulldown removal anymore led me to sell my GH1. I loved my GH1, but I had to face facts that it just wasn't a competitor anymore regardless of how much effort went into making it a decent camera.

    When the testing gets to the point where we get a stable, higher bitrate, 24H and stable 720p60 with B frames, the GH2 will be a force to reckon with.
  • @telkitachki Sorry, I don't believe the GH1's SD card controller can reliably handle bitrates faster than what we've already achieved. I've completed my GH1, GF1, and G2 projects and moved on to the GH2.
  • Svart...exactly
    While shooting my short film we wanted the best image possible..we had to tolerate reshooting takes due to native crashes on GH1.
    Were using GH2 now and I can spot the GH2 shots from GH1 just alone from the resolve...that was before the hack.
    And no more crashes. ;-)
  • Thanks. You're not making my choices any easier. LOL
  • Hi am am new here, and I am considering buying a Gh1 since I need 25p in full HD, and I understand that the GH1 offers that, but that the Gh2 does not offer that yet. I hope I have understood correctly.

    I am not a technical specialist, but I get a little concerned about the stability of the Gh1 hacked reading your discussion.

    1. Is there a certain limit of bitrate where it works without crashes? I need stability since I sometimes film live events, and it is unacceptable if the camera crashes.

    2. RoryB wrote: "My biggest issue with the gh1 was vertical streaking in certain situations."
    what is "vertical streaking"?

    3. and from brudney : "freakin FPN", what does FPN mean?

    Thx a lot :-)
  • 1.if you have it native 25p it will still crash if you lock it down on tripod pointing at high matter what bitrate you use.
    2. vetical streaking is FPN...this is lines that appear vertically over the image in high iso's (usually over 800...but some have it even at 400) unlike noise this cant be really cleaned can reduce fpn by playin with exposure but will be still evident.
    3. see 2 lol
  • @Nic If you need 25p in full HD...the most reliable way to get it on the GH13 is to use 50i since it is Progressive Segmented...i.e the acquired 25p image is simply divided/interlaced to facilitate internal data transmission. Easily/automatically recombines back to true 25p in a NLE (e.g. Edius)

    Thus, 50mbps settings @50i PsF will generally not cause problems whereas enabling 25p will cause grief....lots.

    This is why I'm keeping my GH13's no matter what eventuates with the GH2...UNLESS we no longer have to Cry for Argentina...
  • So does that mean the GH2 hack firmware is not applicable to GH2 PAL version? LPowell mentioned in an earlier post that we won't get 25p in 1080p, which means images will continue to be acquired at 50i? But when I tested the images recorded off my PAL version, the frame rate read 25p - is that faux 25p, via a wrapper?

    I can't wait for Vitaly to finish his good work, but appreciate if he could also shed more light on the implications of his work for PAL owners like me
  • Regarding Skeptikals response.

    I am not very familiar with the whole codec issue. But Is it correctly understood that the material filmed in 50i actually is 50p in a interlaced container?

    And that I then will have a 50p output, from where I can "delete" half of the frames thus getting a 25p?

    And how is the quality compared to a "real" 25 recording...?

    thx a lot to all of you for a quick respons :-)
  • As you probably can guess from my language I am from Europe, and all my questions refer to the possibility of 25p in PAL
  • In PAL mode, the image sensor is scanned as follows:

    1920x1080 on GH1 = 25p
    1920x1080 on GH2 = 50i

    For highest reliability on the GH1, I recommend the Reliable In-Camera Playback Patch:
  • HI LPowel, thx for your response. I have to admit that there are a lot of new terms here and technical details that I will have to study in order to understand, and reading your link about the Reliable In-Camera Playback Patch poses a question, there is says that that patch offers:
    40Mbps FHD mode - AVCHD 1920x1080 24p/25p video (interlaced),

    and my confusion here is that I thought that the "p" after 25 means that it is progressive footage, but here it says that the footage is 25p interlaced. That seem to me to be a contradiction, but I probably don't understand the terms correctly...
  • @Nic

    1920x1080 on GH2 = 50i == 25p interlaced

    hope this helps
  • @Nic

    Easiest way to put it, is FPN and Vertical Streaking show up in underexposed areas.

    Basically Vertical Bars in my footage.

    You can search vimeo and see lots of examples of it.
  • I had it bad too with my GH13. Loved the camera, really hated the streaks. GH2 no such problems.

    Great question, but I'd also love to see some GH2 vs AF100 comparisons too. Anybody have both?
  • @feha: "1920x1080 on GH2 = 50i == 25p interlaced"

    Sorry, that's not correct. The GH2 does not produce 25p video in PAL 1920x1080 mode, it produces 50i. That's why many PAL users are using the GH1 instead.

    The GH1 in PAL 1920x1080 mode produces 25p video. By default, the camera wraps the 25p video inside an interlaced stream, but it remains 25p. In practice, it is merely a technical detail, since all video editors are able to automatically deinterlace the wrapper and work with the file as a 25p video.

    Interlacing often causes confusion because it is an archaic relic of the pre-digital era. If its pitfalls create a practical problem for you, it's wiser to learn explicitly how it works than to seek out second-hand advice.