"Lightweight handling hero"5.0 starson by bradbunnin1
Pros: Light, compact, extraordinary ergonomics (better design than the major competitors), best video of any hybrid
Cons: So far, nothing, except perhaps lack of fast tele-zoom lens.
Summary: "Controls fall readily to hand"-I borrow this assessment from Road & track reviews of British sports cars and apply it to the GH2. Every control is just . . . there, where it ought to be. Major settings are available either already programmed to external knobs, levers, and buttons, or they can be assigned to one of two sets of custom external settings. And the camera is fast! It really does rival mid- to high-end DSLRs, except in frames per second (and five ain't bad). But the price to pay for significantly better speed is the weight of a pro camera. After lugging full-frame Canons around for years, the GH2 is a blessed relief. I actually _like_ taking it with me, along with a couple of lenses that give me a focal length range of 28 to 600mm. I wish their maximum aperture were larger, but if it was, the lenses would weigh a lot more. My whole kit weighs about three pounds! Given the quality of lenses and sensors these days, and the fact that most of us don't shoot in controlled studio conditions where we can achieve the greatest theoretical quality, I'll opt for mobility and accept whatever minor image flaws might exist. So I've chosen light weight and a simple kit with great range, with no regrets. Panasonic's written on a clean slate and produced a remarkable system. A word about the electronic viewfinder: I like it. Especially in dark shooting conditions, it's good to be able to see what I'm framing, because of the gain built into the viewfinder. It's true: there are some artifacts. But I can see past them, and my aging eyes appreciate the bright, competent finder. Automatic magnification of the image when focusing manually is a bonus. So is the clean display. And the format bracketing is a feature I didn't think I'd use much, but I do, because I use images for different purposes in different formats occasionally. Back to video for a moment: there's a feature that allows you to multiply the apparent focal length of the lens you're using by a factor of about 2.5, without any degradation in quality whatsoever. None. This means you have an effective multiplier of 5 times with any lens when shooting video. Think of the implications for nature or sports work! I'm not much for features for their own sake, or for the sake of marketing, but Panasonic's included some really useful and unique features, and still kept the interface quick and easy to use. One might say that Panasonic is the Apple of DSLRs. (Okay, I know the GH2 isn't really a DSL reflex, but it's close enough in function, and I don't like the other acronyms now in use.)