Rumors circulated this week of a fix that significantly improves the biggest issue with Panasonic GH5 and GH5S, namely its auto-focus system when shooting video. Has YodaYeo really stumbled across a fix that GH5 owners have been longing for?
Since its release, the GH5 has been widely regarded as the best sub $5000 4K video camera. It’s ability to shoot 4k/60p 8-bit, and 4k/30p in a 10-bit 4:2:2 color profile internally has lead to the GH5 becoming one of the most popular cameras for small budget filmmakers and creative vloggers. Panasonic have since released the GH5S, significantly improving on low light capabilities, a camera marketed towards professional video setups.
But the biggest gripe has been the handling of the contrast-based, auto-focus technology when shooting video. As widely reported, the camera would take a significant amount of time to refocus on a new subject that is further/closer to the camera, there are occasions when the AFC wouldn't even try to refocus. For those who only shoot in Manual Focus mode, this wasn't an issue. But for some run & gun videographers shooting events, live action, sports, and vloggers, this was a deal breaker.
Then this week, YodaYeo published a video showing how making a small and seemingly insignificant change to the shutter angle setting can drastically improve the auto-focus performance.
A fix that doesn't cost a penny or require uploading unofficial firmware to your camera... is it too good to be true? The fix has seen testing from several significant YouTube GH5 vloggers from Kai W on CVPTV to Three Blind Men and An Elephant Productions, and the bottom line is that YodaYeo is right. This small change in the shutter angle setting does significantly improve auto-focus in 25p or 30p, but not in 24p.
I’ve tested it out myself on my GH5 running the latest 2.2 firmware and can attest to the fact this fix is significantly improving auto-focus capabilities, although it's still not perfect, or up to the levels of Canon’s Dual Pixel CMOS AF.
So if the poor AF system in the GH5/GH5S has held you back from purchasing one, or whether you’re an existing owner looking to improve this functionality, check out YodaYeo’s video for full instructions.