Watch As Nicole Eddy Takes The Panasonic DC-GH5S Lumix G For A Spin!

We decided to put the new Panasonic DC-GH5S Lumix to the test and gave it to local vlogger, Nicole Eddy, to test out and review. Watch as she puts it to the test on a trip to Mozambique!

I was first introduced to the Lumix GH5 through my talented friend MrBrynNorth, it was his trusty video companion that accompanied him on every trip & the footage it/he produced, always seemed to be nothing short of mind-blowing. The GH5 seemed to be spoken a lot about within the world of YouTube with other talented creators like Rob Strok turning to it to film their works of art, but it wasn’t until my favourite Youtube duo, Jon Olsson & Benni Ortega, started filming their vlogs using this camera that truly sold me on wanting to get my hands on one.

With the GH5S rumoured to be one of the best mirrorless video cameras around, I was lucky enough to be lent the camera by Orms Direct, Cape Town’s very own equivalent of the legendary B&H in New York, for an upcoming trip to Mozambique (even though it took me until the after the trip to realise that I was actually using the GH5S…but that’s something to chat about some other time, or preferably never).

Bear in mind that I’m no cinematographer or tech-guru (demonstrated very clearly by the above point). I’m not particularly clued up on camera specs & terminology & I find myself more often than I like to admit googling terms such as ‘micro four-thirds live sensor’ and ‘venus processing machines’, so with that out of the way, this review is done by Nicole Eddy, your average, run of the mill everyday camera-user looking user.

The GH5S is the GH5’s more expensive sibling by about an extra $400-$500.  If you’re anything like me & you’ve never used a GH5 before, you might not actually realise that you’re using the GH5S until someone points it out. This is due to the fact that the differences in appearance are barely there including a red badge bearing an ‘S’ below the GH5, a small red ring around the top right dial & a red REC sign on the top…but apart from those three differences, that’s really about it.

So what are the first things that I noticed about my experience using the camera? As a ‘vlogger’, aptly described by Urban Dictionary as:
”A person who records them self talking about their life and uploads it to various video sites. (Video Blog)

I loved the fact that it had a flip-around, touch-screen. This was such a game changer being able to see whether I was actually in frame while talking to the camera. I have for the most part shot blind when talking to camera as none of my previous cameras’s had a flip-out screen so this was a really great feature & a reminder of how crucial this actually is when it comes to vlogging & ensuring that your face remains in focus.

As a massive fan of using slow-motion B-roll footage in my vlogs, the GH5S absolutely hit the nail on the head by being able to film 60fps in 4k in 8 bit (30fps in 10 bit), however, can shoot well 240fps at 1080p, whereas the GH5 can shoot 180fps at 1080p. Unlike many camera’s before this, there is no limited time for shooting footage at 240fps, it is obviously then just down to the speed & space provided by your SD card. The smooth buttery shots that I got of surfers doing turns on waves was beautiful to watch when recorded in 240fps,  I almost had to check whether my playback had paused or not. Realistically though, although 240fps is amazing to shoot with, as a vlogger, 180fps is already more than sufficient to get all of the slow-mo B-roll shots needed.

I also found the camera incredibly smooth, however, what I initially thought was the 5-axis dual stabilisation that the GH5 has, it turned out instead that the Leica 12-60mm lens from Panasonic that I was using had Power optical image stabilisation– so I can only imagine what that lens on a GH5 might look like. The fact that the GH5S does not come with IBS has been deemed as one of the major differences & downfalls, especially for vloggers, as when talking to camera hand-held run of the gun style, could be a game-changer.

As mentioned above I had never tested out or played around the GH5 before & therefore had never tested it’s low-light capabilities. Being a user of the only A7S MKII which is known for it’s incredible ability to function in low-light situations, the GH5S most definitely kept up with the Sony in this regard. The GH5S has a ‘dual-native ISO’ (one at 400 & again at 2500), and had an ISO range of 160-51200. I didn’t test it out at it’s maximum ISO as I’d never use it anyway, but basically in conclusion – it performs really well in low-light situations.

On the down-side, and of this there aren’t many points. The first thing I noticed was that the auto-focus was not too hot and I would often turn to keep the lens on manual focus in order to keep up with the fleeting moments at markets or whilst driving that I wanted to capture. What I did like when filming with manual focus, is that there is a 20x magnification window that would pop up to help navigate what it was exactly that I was filming.

The last downside is the price coming in at about $2500. For someone like me who wouldn’t necessarily need all the bells & whistles for videos, I would much rather opt for the GH5’s cheaper sibling, especially as that means I will extra stabilisation (although once again, I was pretty impressed with the stabilisation in this camera regardless). At the end pf the day, it really is a remarkable camera & for someone who is looking for more of a professional approach to their content, I couldn’t recommend it more.

Once again, a massive thank you to Orms for trusting me with this baby straight out of the box! For anyone in Cape Town looking for camera’s, camera equipment & gadgets or even just straight up camera advice, these are your guys and girls.


If you’d like to follow more of Nicole’s adventures be sure to give her a follow on YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook or, of course, her blog!

To have a more detailed look at the Panasonic DC-GH5s Lumix or to place your order follow this link to Orms Direct.

Categories: Cinematography