PURCHASE: GH1 Hackable or GH2????
I know this is a burning question for everybody right now; is a GH13 better than the new GH2?
I realize the answer is as of yet a bit undetermined. I want to purchase one or the other and I really want some opinions here.
As it stands now I do think the video options, particularly regarding slow motion, are still better on the hacked GH1. But I have seen some footage that does seem to indicate the color is better on the GH2.
I just wonder if a similar hack will ultimately appear for the GH2 rendering the GH1 obsolete. Then again Panasonic seems to have locked down their firmware now so will it even be possible?
A hackable/hacked GH1 is at this point about the same price as a GH2, but I'm not a rich guy so it has to be one or the other.
I would really appreciate any thoughts on this, thanks!!!!
As you say, it can be difficult to choose between a hackable GH1 and the new GH2. Everyone's situation and reasons to choose one or the other is unique. Personally I've been able to choose both: I'm keeping the hacked GH1 I already have, and I have a GH2 on order.
In some ways it's too early to draw definitive conclusions. The GH2 is barely available in most countries, especially in the US. There hasn't been much thorough, hands-on use of final, production (not pre-production) GH2 cams to use & test.
(To the best of my knowledge, as of today, the GH2 is not for sale by authorized Panasonic dealers. Or at least, these dealers aren't actually shipping GH2 cams to customers. That will change "soon" as more cams get into the pipeline, but right now pretty much the only GH2 cams in the US were purchased from dealers in other countries.)
A few details are known:
- Hackable, used GH1 cam bodies can be bought much less expensively than new GH2 cam bodies.
- It's all but inevitable that eventually Panasonic will release a firmware update for the GH2. This is fairly normal for DSLR cams. They'll do it either to fix a bug in the GH2, or to add a relatively "minor" feature. But it's completely unpredictable when this will happen. It could be many months from now. Since a hack for the GH2 all but requires an official firmware update file to work with, such a hack won't be available until sometime after the firmware update. As a result, a hack for the GH2 might not be available many, many months, or it could be available as soon as next month, or it might "never" be available. Given this unpredictability, I don't recommend basing a camera purchase decision on it.
- The GH2 includes some really nice new features compared to a hacked GH1 & other video-capable DSLRs & "traditional" camcorders. However, as you mention, the reverse is also true. Only you can determine what's most appropriate for your primary application.
Enjoy your research!
[Peter DeCrescenzo] "... To the best of my knowledge, as of today, the GH2 is not for sale by authorized Panasonic dealers. Or at least, these dealers aren't actually shipping GH2 cams to customers. ..."
Oops. I meant to say:
"To the best of my knowledge, as of today, the GH2 is not for sale by authorized Panasonic _US_ dealers. Or at least, these dealers aren't actually shipping GH2 cams to customers."
Also, this situation will gradually change in the coming days & weeks.