Panasonic has announced an upgrade to its top-of-the-line compact system camera, the GH3, in the shape of the GH4.
The camera features an improved 16 million pixel Live MOS Four Thirds sensor. Panasonic says that the sensor has been newly developed for the camera, with approximately 50% higher speed signal readout compared with its predecessor, the GH3.
Also new is the Venus processing engine, which is designed for superior noise reduction and includes a new Random Filter for noise reduction, which Panasonic claims gives fantastic results in low light shooting.
Micro Four Thirds cameras are renowned for their super fast focusing speeds, and the GH4 has been engineered to further improve on that. A high precision Contrast AF system has been enhanced by DFD (Depth from Defocus) technology which shortens the focus time even further.
The number of autofocus points has been raised to 49, while newly incorporated Eye Detection AF has been designed to increase the accuracy of portrait photography.
Burst shooting sees an improvement too, with the camera boasting 12fps at full resolution. A maximum shutter speed of 1/8000 of a second is also available for capturing fast-moving subjects.
Perhaps the biggest new feature is the addition of 4K video recording. The GH series of cameras is traditionally targeted at those that want to create video, so it's not surprising to see this announcement being made to entice even more videographers to use the camera.
Along with the 4K Ultra HD video recording, the camera can record Full HD video with ultra-high bitrate at 200Mbps (ALL-Intra) or 100 Mvps (IPB). It can also record in multiple video file formats, including MOV, MP4, AVCHD Progressive and AVCHD.
Variable Frame Rate allows you to record both dramatic slow motion as well as fast motion, such as 96fps or 4x speed, all in full HD. Stop motion animations and time lapse shots are also possible.
The GH4 is weather-sealed with a magnesium alloy body designed to withstand heavy usage. The LCD screen is an articulating, touch sensitive, three inch 1,040k dot device, while the OLED viewfinder has had its resolution upped to 2.359k dots.
The Panasonic GH4 price and availability has yet to be confirmed.