GH5 vs A6500 Side-by-Side Test Comparing IBIS, Lowlight, 4K, Dynamic Range, & Rolling Shutter

Beyond any doubt, these two rivals are (arguably) the most popular compact mirrorless cameras one can currently get. They are not only packed with a plethora of professional video features at a relatively reasonable price but also seem to deliver some fantastic 4K images right out of the box.

Many filmmakers, however, are wondering how do the Panasonic GH5 and Sony A6500 stack up against each other. The video below produced by Max Yuryev compares some of the essential aspects and features of the two cameras such as overall image quality, color fidelity, built-in image stabilization, low light performance, usable dynamic range, rolling shutter, and more.

First and foremost, I clearly understand that these types of tests are usually treated very subjectively as each and every person can see and justify different flaws or highlight a myriad of advantages depending on the camera brand they like better. The point here, though, is not to spur another vigorous debate on the topic but put these two cameras side-by-side instead so that everyone can get as unbiased and objective opinion as possible on their own.

I would only allow myself to share my modest personal observations based on what I was able to comprehend from the actual video and what I know about these two cameras thus far, but I’m pretty sure that everyone can make their own conclusion anyway.

That being said, I prefer the visual aesthetics as well as the built-in image stabilization performance that the GH5 delivers when compared to the A6500. The Sony rival, however, has better dynamic range but worse rolling shutter, both aspects affected by the bigger sensor size and some other internal specifications.

Obviously, the A6500 is the better low-light performer out of the two, but the color rendition on the GH5 seem to be more pleasant to the eye when shooting with the camera straight out of the box, but still not as impressive and accurate as the Canon color science.

In other words, the GH5 has great IBIS with bad focusing whereas the A6500 offers great focusing but bad rolling shutter. Plus, you have to pay additional $100 to be able to enable V-Log on the GH5 while the A6500 provides a few built-in Log modes to choose from right off the bat.

The GH5, on the other hand, is capable of recording 10-bit 4:2:2 video while the A6500 is limited to 8-bit recording only. The GH5 can run significantly longer on a single battery charge whereas the Sony A6500 drains its battery way too fast, especially when shooting 4K video. The GH5 can record 4K video at 60fps whereas the A6500 is limited to 4K 30p only. And, the list goes on.

So, the bottom line is that neither of those contenders is perfect as they both come with their strengths and weaknesses. You’ll be able to spot many other differences and similarities between the two models, both at the same time, that are more or less important to you so it all comes to which camera would serve your needs better on a day to day basis. So, which one would you pick and why? Let us know in the comments below.

[source: Max Yuryev]

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  • BryanApostol

    Great article! Stuck right now between choosing between either cameras for 4k shooting, and this definitely helped with my decision making. Thanks!