By technical editor Matt Allard:
Panasonic have released firmware version 2.0 for the GH4. This is a major release that adds multi-aspect video recording – a major boon for fans of anamorphic lens shooting who will gain from increased vertical resolution when compared to a regular 4K frame.
Called 4K photo mode the function records video in 4:3, 3:2 and 1:1 aspect ratios and is primarily designed to allow photographers to grab stills from the moving images – this should be great for Anamorphic shooters too, but are some major catches.
In this mode the camera cannot record the cinema standard 24P, only 30P and 25P on PAL cameras. Additionally recording is limited to the MP4 format and the HDMI output is disabled. Even so this should be an interesting way for anamorphic shooters to utilise more of the sensor with the GH4 when outputting in the commonly used aspect ratios. There is a good primer on anamorphic shooting on wikipedia for those who aren’t familiar with the concepts.
The aspect ratios are:
[4:3] (Size: 3328 x 2496)
[3:2] (Size: 3504 x 2336)
[16:9] (Size: 3840 x 2160)
[1:1] (Size: 2880x 2880)
In addition to the multi-aspect shooting the new firmware also adds 4K 23.98 fps MP4 recording at 100 Mbps.
Here is the complete set of new features:
1. [4K PHOTO] mode is added which records 4K video exclusively for capturing a frame to save as a photo.
◦ Settings can be adjusted as below when entering this mode. - Rec Format : MP4 - Rec Quality : 4K 30p, 100Mbps (System Frequency 59.94Hz), 4K 25p, 100Mbps (System Frequency 50.00Hz) - Luminance Level:0-255
◦ In addition to 16:9 aspect, 4:3 / 3:2 / 1:1 can be selected.
◦ Exif information is embedded to the captured image from the 4K video.
◦ Marking function is available enables marker setting on the designated point while recording video and users can jump to the markers when playing back the video to capture the frame they want.
◦ Loop Recording function is added, with which the camera keeps on recording video while deleting the old footage automatically.
2. 4K 23.98p, 100Mbps mode is added in MP4 video recording.
3. The upper limit of the ISO sensitivity can be set in the menu of ISO sensitivity setting and emission amount of flash light can be adjusted in the menu of exposure compensation.
4. Focusing performance of 1-area AF in video recording is improved.
5. Tracking performance of tracking AF when used with the interchangeable lens H-FS14140 is improved.
6. Remote shooting via USB tethering is available by using PC software “USB Tether” supplied by Promote Systems. *For more information on Promote Systems, please visit http://www.promotesystems.com/
There is more information from Panasonic available here.