Advice needed for a compact camera

Started 2 months ago | Questions thread
nzmacro Forum Pro • Posts: 16,319
Oh Tom :-)

Tom Caldwell wrote:

R00kiePh0t0 wrote:

Dear photographers,

I am in the market for a compact camera. After some hefty research I narrowed it down that I want a compact (pocket) camera with interchangable lenses and a viewfinder. I am going on travels soon (F1 in Hungary and Asia general and Bali/Lombok later in the year) and I just want a small camera that I can grow into.

In my search I always kept hearing about GM1 and GM5. I love the design and the size of it. However, it seems it is not made anymore and finding it is near impossible. A funny side note is that anyone that has one or wants one sounds like a cultist chanting GM1 and GM5 over and over.

My question to you and if you are willing, would anyone be able to advise me which camera even comes close to what I want. There are so many camera's in 2019 that I cannot see the forest beyond the trees.

Many thanks for however wishes to extend his/her knowledge.

As a cultist GM owner I feel qualified to answer .... and you cannot have any of mine ...

I think why the GM series has become a cult and why also that it did not sell as well as Panasonic might have hoped at the same time is because they were in fact fully capable cameras. That might be surprising but the general perception is that very small cameras are not capable and as they are “not deemed capable” should not cost much and be only suitable for entry level users or backup of a larger camera body.

Therefore if you don’t find a GM then you will only see a whole raft of cheap less capable cameras marketed to users with a less technical interest in photography. Not that such cameras as the Panasonic GX850, or the Olympus PL-8 cannot take good photographs but the reality is that capability is hidden behind a mask of ease of use. “Jump shots” and tilting lcd - hiding features and making preset modes prominent. The cameras being made for mobile phone camera users that they are distinctly not buying.

In any case in the M4/3 system the smallest compact cameras with more serious intent are the Olympus E-M10 series, Pen-F (on run out special), or the 16mp GX80/85 which may well also be very good value - or its technical upgrade the 20mp GX9.

I was disappointed when reading about the E-M10iii as I had been hoping to see a power packed little sibling of the E-MIii and the reviews read like an “easy-camera” for entry level users.

But I am sure that the E-M10iii will take very good images. It is just that having used digital cameras for nearly 20 years in which time I have used FF dslr bodies and lenses at such a price which would make even some professionals eyes water the idea that I should be buying entry level camera bodies is a sort of backhanded insult.

But with my GM5 camera bodies I feel that I am handling a camera body that has serious intent even though those that have preconceived ideas of ranking camera bodies by physical size alone still laugh at the idea.

Last weekend I went to an event where “professional cameras” were banned ... as a GM5 user I was the one who had the last laugh as of course the GM5 did not look “professional enough” ... The GM5 is in fact a tiny power house that can mount all lenses that fit on the M4/3 mount system - those that “cripple” the GM5 by only using it with a sub-set of tiny lenses quite miss the whole point.

Do you do a search for the GM1 and GM5 everytime you come onto DPR mate

Every time one is mentioned, you're like a rat up a drain pipe mate. I love it. Nothing like passion for sure. Ha.

All the best next door Tom.


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