It may be the first mirrorless model to shoot 4K video, but the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 compact system camera is no one-trick pony. Among other things, it also has a new 16.05-million-pixel Live MOS sensor
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 review- Autofocus
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4 features a host of focusing options that maximise its functionality for video and photographic use. Using a precision contrast AF system, it speeds up the focus processing with Panasonic’s proprietary Depth from Defocus (DFD) method, taking readings from the foreground and background of the subject area to hone in to the correct target in as little as 0.07sec.
A large portion of the GH4’s screen is covered by the 49 AF areas. This is more than double the 23 points available on the GH3 and are divided into groups of either four, six or nine. Face/eye detection works well and can detect up to 15 people. Tracking AF gave me some mixed results: the GH4 was capable of finding the right subject, but it occasionally dropped focus, which I noticed particularly during burst mode shooting where the camera lost focus every five or so frames before quickly snapping back onto the moving subject. Pinpoint AF mode allows you to focus on subjects smaller than the individual AF area. But for me, the most useful and interesting features in the GH4’s AF menu are the custom AF options.
The size of single-area AF can be adjusted using the wheel or the pinch and zoom touch functions you would use on a smear device, while custom AF allows for the user to freely set AF areas to better suit a variety of subjects, including areas not linked and are situated in different parts of the frame. Up to four custom AF grids can be created and stored in the custom AF menu, and setting them is easy as grids can be switched on or off by running your finger across the screen or tapping one of the 49 areas.
Image: Being able to shoot at 12 frames per second and the GH4’s quick continuous auto focus make it possible to freeze fast-moving subjects