M43 low light performance vs compact cameras with very bright lenses

Started Sep 3, 2013 | Questions thread
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CDLphoto
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M43 low light performance vs compact cameras with very bright lenses
Sep 3, 2013

I am not a professional photographer, so apologies if my question may seem banal to the most experienced photographers in the forum.

A standard 14-42 Panasonic lens ranges from F3.5 (wide end) to F5.6 (tele end)(http://www.panasonic.co.uk/html/en_GB/Products/Digital+Camera/Lumix+G+Lenses/H-FS1442A/Overview/11376084/index.html)

By contrast, some high-end compact cameras, like the Olympus XZ-2, XZ-10, Canon S110 start at about F1.8-2 at the wide-end, and if I'm not mistaken the Panasonic LX7 even has F1.4 at the wide end.

My question is: which performs better in low light, a micro-four third with a larger sensor but F3.5 at the wide end, or a compact with a much smaller sensor but a much brighter lens (F2)? To what extent does the larger sensor compensate the slower lens?

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