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Panasonic Lumix DMC-G10 Quick Review

August 2010 | By Barney Britton


Review based on a production DMC-G10

This is the latest in our series of new 'Quick Reviews.' We will be using this format for cameras that are operationally similar and identical in terms of output to models we've already reviewed. We test to confirm the image quality is identical (noise tests and shots of our 'compared to' studio scene at all ISOs), then concentrate the review on the differences between the two cameras. To learn everything about the camera you are interested in we recommend reading not only the Quick Review but also the full review of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2.

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-G10 is (with the G2) the latest of Panasonic's pioneering G-series mirrorless system cameras. The G10 is a new camera, but in many ways it represents a synthesis of elements from other models in the series. The G10 has the same sensor as the G2, and like the original G1 it is styled to resemble a 'traditional' DSLR, but like the GF1, its LCD screen is fixed, not articulated. Unlike the GF1, the G10 offers a built-in EVF (of the same specification as the optional DMW-LVF1E viewfinder unit which is available for the GF1), but its resolution is lower than that of the G1, GH1 and G2, at 202k dots pixels compared to 1.4 million. The G10's EVF is of the more conventional grid type, too, as opposed to the field-sequential display used in the G2.

Basically then, the G10 is a stripped-down version of the G2, aimed squarely at entry-level users. The essentials remain the same (sensor, AF/metering system) but the G10 lacks the more expensive extras found in the higher-end model such as a touch-sensitive articulated LCD screen and high-resolution EVF. As such, the G10 is a 'budget' model, and represents Panasonic's first real attempt with a Micro Four Thirds camera to compete with entry-level DSLRs. Can it compete with the likes of the Canon EOS 1000D and Nikon D3000? Read on to find out.

Compared to Panasonic DMC-G2 - key differences

The G10 is a stripped-down version of the more expensive G2, both in terms of ergonomics and some aspects of its specification. Here are the main differences:

  • Approximately 32g lighter
  • Slightly different button/switch layout on topplate
  • No automatic EVF/LCD switch
  • Significantly lower resolution EVF (202K dots compared to 1.4 million dots, and not field-sequential)
  • Fixed, non touch-sensitive LCD screen
  • No AVCHD (lite) recording option in movie mode (motion JPEG only)
  • No plug for external microphone
  • No dedicated movie recording button (movie mode accessed from exposure mode dial instead)

GF1, G2 and G10 compared (key differences)

 

Panasonic DMC GF1

Panasonic DMC G2

Panasonic DMC G10
Video mode • AVCHD :
1280 x 720

• Motion JPEG:
1280 x 720, 30fps
848 x 480, 30fps
640 x 480, 30fps
320 x 240, 30fps
• AVCHD :
1280 x 720, 60/50fps

• Motion JPEG:
1280 x 720, 30fps
848 x 480, 30fps
640 x 480, 30fps
320 x 240, 30fps
• Motion JPEG:
1280 x 720, 30fps
848 x 480, 30fps
640 x 480, 30fps
320 x 240, 30fps
Audio
• Mono (stereo via external mic connecter)
• Mono (stereo via external mic connecter)
• Mono
LCD screen
• 3.0" TFT LCD monitor
• 460,000 dots
• Approx 100% coverage
• 3.0" TFT LCD monitor
• 460,000 dots
• Approx 100% coverage
• Multi-angle swing and tilt (180°swing, 180° swivel)
• Touch sensitive
• 3.0" TFT LCD monitor
• 460,000 dots
• Approx 100% coverage
Viewfinder
• Optional
• 1.04x magnification
• 0.52x (35mm equiv)
• 202k dots
• 100% FOV
• 1.4x magnification
• 0.7x (35mm equiv)
• 1,440k dot equiv
• 100% FOV
• 1.04x magnification
• 0.52x (35mm equiv)
• 202k dots
• 100% FOV
Dimensions 119 mm x 71 mm x 36.3 mm
124 mm x 84 mm x 74 mm
124 mm x 84 mm x 74 mm
Weight (body only) Approx. 285 g (10.05 oz)
Approx. 371 g (13.1 oz)
Approx. 336 g (11.9 oz)

Foreword / notes

If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read some of our Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / recommendation / ratings are based on the opinion of the author, we recommend that you read the entire review before making any decision. Images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of them, click to display a larger image in a new window.

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Dpreview use calibrated monitors at the PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally also A, B and C.

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