As it was initially unveiled at Photokina last year, the Panasonic Lumix S1 and S1R cameras are their answer to the domination of larger sensors in stills and video mirrorless cameras. Is there any reason now to buy a Full Frame DSLR when mirrorless is so advanced? The only thing we can think of is to have marginally longer battery life. The mirror is on its last legs and fans better start offloading their lenses if they don’t want to mess with adapters. In the case of Panasonic however, it is not possible to use Lumix Micro 4/3 lenses on the Leica/Sigma/Panasonic Full Frame L-Mount.
The S1 and S1R will both shoot up to 180fps 1080p video with a crop that may or may not be impactful. Seems the S1R has less crop on 1080p than the video geared S1 which is an odd spec. We will have to wait for more samples and info on the HFR mode to see which of these cameras offers the best slow motion performance. From the limited samples, we can say that the quality looks very good and at least on par with the Lumix GH5 at 120fps.
The new v2.02 firmware update for the Panasonic EVA1 includes improved bit rates at a variety of frame rates like: 2k- 422-Intra Frame Recording 200M/100M Max 120fps (equivalent to 400Mbps) Which may improve slow-motion quality considerably by allowing more data to be saved instead of scrapped.
For digital recorder owners, there is a lot to be excited about as the camera will now output RAW data at: 5.7K/30p Full sensor, 4K/60p Crop , 2K/240p Sensor Crop. Since the 240fps mode saved internally exhibited very severe aliasing, moire and line skipping; the fact that RAW is now a possibility should bring the camera’s capabilities up a notch and deliver excellent slow-motion quality. We hope to have some samples of the RAW recording on the EVA1 in a future update.
So the rumors proved to be accurate on the GH5s and now we have a low light version of the GH5 that can shoot cleanly up to ISO 12,800 with up to 100k ISO and by then a much noisier picture. It is claimed by Panasonic that there was a 1.5 stop improvement in noise performance. Judging by the initial video samples it is clear that the new 10.28MP sensor along with dual native ISO circuitry for each photosite “one at ISO 400” and “one at ISO 2400” make a huge performance leap if low light is desired in a m43 camera.
All is not rosy in Lumix land however as the camera now lacks IBIS or In Built Image Stabilization on the sensor which was a main selling point of both the GH5 and the G9. Panasonic claims that it was a decision made to cater to filmmakers that need no wobble or vibrations in a shot that can be produced when the stabilizer fails. But why not just add an On-Off switch? 1080p 240fps is also included in the camera but as initial samples show it reduces quality substantially.
The Panasonic EVA1 camera has started to ship to pre-order owners and some footage has started to show on the web. The camera seems to be very good at low ISOs and up to ISO 5000 it defends itself well. After that banding and heavy noise starts to become a problem. One thing to keep in mind is that the 5.7k sensor is intended to supersample for 4k to deliver unbelievable detail levels while having a detrimental effect on super high ISO. The dual native ISO settings of 800 on the low end and 2500 ISO on the high end help the camera achieve dependable noise free and extremely clean footage in those modes.
The camera can also shoot up to 240fps full HD and or 2k super slow motion video and use it’s improved sensor specs to reduce rolling shutter. The camera should be able to deliver excellent high frame rates in good light but it seems the slow-motion option offers lower quality in codec and also in noise control. We have no clue what is causing this but it is apparent from the samples that detail and quality take a hard hit in these modes.
The Panasonic AU-EVA1 Super 35mm Cinema Camera is a first for the company in several key fronts. For starters, it is abandoning the Micro 4/3 sensor in turn for a more industry standard S35 module which has a larger area and in turn much better light gathering power. Gone also is the micro 4/3 lens mount which Panasonic favors and in its place a Canon EF Electronic mount which could have been called blasphemy to see this in a product line of this price range for Panasonic.
Since the sensor-flange distance is increased you will not be able to use the Micro 4/3 or 4/3 lenses you were using with an AF100 for example. When it comes to slow motion this camera is no slouch with 240fps continuous recording to SDXC II v90 cards in both 2k resolution and full HD 1080p. It is also bringing it to the 4k 50/60p realm which now is becoming commonplace.
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