The Panasonic GH6 is one of the most anticipated mirrorless cameras of the year –and a new Lumix anniversary event might have just given us its full launch date.
As spotted by 43Rumors, Panasonic Japan has announced a 20th anniversary celebration of Lumix cameras for October 27. This event has long been expected to see the full arrival of the Panasonic GH6, so it's a date to keep an eye on if you're in the market for a small hybrid video camera.
The 20th anniversary event, which will mark the launch of the first Panasonic Lumix cameras (the Panasonic DMC-LC5 and DMC-F7) back in 2001, doesn't contain any specific mentions of the GH6. But it does include promises that, in the next 20 years, "we will be closer to our customers' needs than ever before and support them in terms of both technology and usability".
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An added hint that this event could see the arrival of the Panasonic GH6 came in the form of a competition on the Lumix Instagram account back in August. The prize for that now-closed competition was, you guessed it, a Panasonic GH6, along with the new Panasonic 25-50mm f/1.7 ASPH and 10-25mm f/1.7 ASPH lenses.
The winner of this competition is due to be announced on October 27, the same day as the 20th anniversary. So the stars are certainly aligning for a full Panasonic GH6 launch on that date, even if the competition winner was only promised a GH6 at some point after its release.
So far, we've only seen a development announcement for the Panasonic GH6, with a vague announcement that it "will be available by the end of 2021”. But with time running out for that to happen before the shopping season kicks off, it does seem likely that Panasonic could aim to fully reveal its much-anticipated camera at that anniversary event on October 27.
Analysis: A promising but long-awaited sequel
The Panasonic GH5 (above) quickly built a strong reputation as a small, reliable video workhorse after its launch back in January 2017 – which is why the Panasonic GH6 has been so hotly anticipated by both amateur and professional filmmakers.
Strangely, we did get the Panasonic GH5 Mark II back in May, but that largely unchanged camera is Panasonic's attempt to get a slice of the live-streaming pie. The true GH5 successor for those who want a small mirrorless camera for run-and-gun filmmaking is the GH6 – and it looks like we'll finally see more than a few shadowy glimpses of that camera later this month.
So far, Panasonic has revealed very little about the GH6's specs, other than the fact that it'll have a new high-speed sensor that’s capable of shooting 5.7K/60p video. We know that it'll also be able to shoot 4:2:2 10-bit Cinema 4K/60p video internally – which suggests that it could be a more affordable alternative to the likes of the Sony A7S III.
But there are still many unknowns. Will Panasonic stick to its Depth by Defocus (DFD) autofocus system, or finally switch to a hybrid phase-detect setup? And what kind of codec support, screen and in-body stabilization (IBIS) system will it bring?
These questions will be answered soon, if that anniversary event does indeed mark the arrival of the GH6. But with some extremely strong video competition from the likes of the Sony A7C, Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro and even the Fujifilm X-T4, we hope the Panasonic GH6 packs in some unexpected features and doesn't see any delays to its on-sale date – otherwise, filmmakers may run out of patience and spend their cash elsewhere.
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