Does the Panasonic S1 Secretly Have Dual Native ISO Just Like the S1H?

Aside from 6K/24p, one of the most exciting selling points of the S1H that Panasonic launched back in May was its dual native ISO, a feature that allowed users to switch between ISO 640 and 4000 without changing the levels of noise. Strangely, it seems that this feature might also have quietly been included in the much cheaper S1.

This video from filmmaker Andy Trace attempts to demonstrate the phenomenon using his recently-purchased S1. From his test, it appears that the S1 suddenly gives a much cleaner image when stepping up from ISO 3200 to ISO 4000. In a camera with dual native ISO, this happens because a second circuit within the sensor takes over, resetting the noise floor of the image.

If Trace’s findings prove correct, you’d imagine that anyone who leaned towards the S1H over the S1 because of the dual native ISO might now be a little miffed. Right now there are some great deals to be had on the S1, selling for just under $2,200 compared to $4,000 for the S1H, though of course the latter offers a groundbreaking 6K/24p. 

Trace is not completely sure of his findings as yet and needs to do some more tests. He notes that this only seems to occur when using the V-Log picture profile.

If you have an S1, feel free to conduct your own tests and post your results in the comments below. Also, let us know if you splashed out for the S1H and are now feeling a little frustrated!

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The S1H targets a different audience...videomakers. Photographers would care about dual iso more.

David Love's picture

If they cared about Blackmagic here you would learn how the dual iso on the 6k is bad ass and it's for video.

Black Z Eddie .'s picture

OT, dude, some of your thumbnails are comical. Love 'em! :D

Andy Day's picture

Ha. Glad that they're being appreciated. 😂

Might be true re: dual ISO on S1 - about S1H it says "In normal mode, the two native ISO are 100 and 640"

Check out the bump in DR at ISO 640 as measured by dxomark:

This is common in Sony sensors. Dual Conversion Gain. Started around 2015.