Panasonic Lumix GH3 adds video enhancements and Wi-Fi

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Panasonic just announced a new flagship mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera at the Photokina show in Cologne, Germany. The new Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 will replace the Lumix GH2 while adding a new sensor, faster focus speeds, a wider range of video capabilities, and built-in Wi-Fi.

The Lumix GH3 has a new 16-megapixel CMOS sensor and the company's latest Venus processing engine. Panasonic says that the GH3's autofocus speeds are the fastest yet in the G series, at 0.07 of a second. Continuous shooting speeds reach up to 6fps at full resolution, and the GH3 has automated modes for HDR capture, interval shooting, and multi-exposure photos.

Like the GH2 before it, the new camera also has an adjustable touchscreen that can be used for touch-to-focus controls for stills and video. The touchscreen itself is a tilt-and-swivel 610,000-dot OLED display instead of the LCD screen found in the GH2. The new Lumix camera also has an eye-level OLED viewfinder with a resolution of 1.7 million dots.

Video features look to be a major selling point for the new camera, as it captures 1080p video at frame rates of 60p, 30p, and 24p with the ability to perform rack-focus tricks while filming by simply touching different parts of the camera's touchscreen. Like Nikon's newer DSLRs, the GH3 also offers the ability to output uncompressed video to an external monitor via an HDMI connection while filming.

The camera also has a 3.5mm headphone jack for monitoring audio, as well as time code support for professional videographers. Manual exposure controls and ISO settings up to 12,800 are accessible in video mode, and the GH3 also has a range of creative effects that can be applied to both photos and videos while shooting.

On the Wi-Fi sharing front, the GH3 is also compatible with a free "Lumix Link" app for iOS and Android that lets shooters control the camera from a mobile device. Once connected to the camera, a mobile device can be used for remote photo browsing and remote live view, and photos can be geotagged using a mobile phone's GPS data.

There's no official pricing information just yet, but Panasonic says the new camera is expected to cost around $2000. The Lumix DMC-GH3 is due in November.

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