Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM1 Review
Not quite a day after Sony made its announcement of two mirrorless cameras with full frame sensors, Panasonic unveiled something of a very different shape: the Lumix DMC-GM1, a pocketable camera with a 16 megapixel Four Thirds sensor. It uses the same Micro Four Thirds mount that its much larger Olympus and Panasonic siblings have been using for years, but at introduction will be sold with a specially designed 12-32mm F3.5-5.6 kit zoom sporting a smaller diameter for the GM1's especially diminutive form.
Panasonic GM1 specification highlights
- 16MP Live MOS sensor
- Built-in Wi-Fi (no NFC)
- 3.0-inch, 1036K dot touch-sensitive LCD
- 1080 HD video recording at 60i/30p
- Built-in pop-up flash
- 1/16,000 maximum shutter speed (with all-electronic shutter)
- Focus peaking
- Picture-in-picture magnification for manual focus
- Micro HDMI output
- Magnesium-alloy shell with aluminum top and bottom plates
Micro Four Thirds made its debut in 2008 with the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1. The G1 was DSLR-shaped, with a handgrip and built-in viewfinder, but smaller and lighter than its other interchangeable lens peers at the time. Not long afterwards Olympus joined the party with the PEN E-P1, which was smaller and rangefinder-shaped. From there, the Micro Four Thirds platform split into roughly two camera styles - those that looked like DSLRs (mostly the preserve of Panasonic) and those that didn't (mostly those made by Olympus).
Understandably, in those early days neither manufacturer seemed entirely sure whether the platform would catch on more to step-up beginners or more advanced photographers looking for a lighter second camera, so they tried to appeal to both. Panasonic's first rangefinder-style model, the GF1, was a hit with enthusiasts, but Panasonic engineers quickly steered succeeding models away from that crowd toward the beginner set with simplistic control layouts and easy access to automatic exposure settings. The introduction of the button-and-dial-encrusted-GX1 marked a renewed focus on the enthusiast crowd, but by that time other manufacturers had a lot to offer that segment of the market.
So what's the 'State of Mirrorless' today? Rangefinder-style mirrorless cameras have enjoyed some popularity among enthusiasts, and the Olympus OM-D E-M5 and E-M1 have proven MFT cameras have real potential as serious alternatives to mid-range and semi-pro DSLRs. Their smallness as compared to DSLRs is no longer Micro Four Third's sole selling point - they've just become really good cameras that happen to be smaller and lighter. At the same time, compact enthusiast cameras with large sensors are becoming popular too. A fixed zoom lens no longer denotes a major sacrifice in image quality in a post-Cyber-shot RX100 world.
This is the enthusiast camera market that the Panasonic Lumix GM1 enters, donning the title of smallest interchangeable lens camera to date (by Panasonic's reckoning). It boasts the same 16 megapixel CMOS sensor as the GX7, with muted retro design cues borrowed from the same camera. The GM1 uses the familiar Micro Four Thirds mount and it is introduced alongside a new 12-32mm F3.5-5.6 with a retractable design that is specifically designed with a small enough diameter to fit neatly onto the camera body, which is barely taller than the lens mount itself.
It would draw obvious comparisons to the Pentax Q-series, the other miniature interchangeable lens system, but the Q7 uses a definitely compact-camera-sized 1/1.7" type sensor. The GM1 could also be compared to the Sony Cyber-shot RX00 II, both priced at $750 US at introduction and targeting roughly the same group of users. That camera offers a 1" type sensor that's big for a compact but nowhere near the size of a Micro Four Thirds sensor, as well as a fixed zoom lens. However, the Q7 and RX100 II seem most similar to the GM1 in terms of size and target audience, despite their smaller sensors.
Specifications compared to Pentax Q7 and Sony RX100 II
|Panasonic GM1||Pentax Q7||Sony RX100 II|
|Sensor||16MP, Four Thirds||12MP, 1/1.7" BSI CMOS||20MP, 1"-type BSI CMOS|
|Sensor size (mm2)||225mm2||42mm2||116mm2|
|Lens Mount||Micro Four Thirds||Pentax Q||Fixed|
|Zoom range (kit or fixed, 35mm equiv.)||24-64mm||23-69mm||28-100mm|
|LCD||3.0-inch 1036K-dot fixed touch screen||3.0-inch 460K-dot fixed||3.0-inch 1229K-dot tilting|
|Viewfinder option||None||OVF accessory||EVF accessory|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi||None||Wi-Fi with NFC|
|Video capture max. resolution||1080 60i, 30p||1080 30p||1080 60p, 60i|
|Stabilization||In lens - Mega O.I.S.||Sensor-shift IS||Optical Steady Shot|
|Dimensions||98.5 x 54.9 x 30.4 mm (3.88 x 2.16 x 1.20")||102 x 58 x 34 mm (4.02 x 2.28 x 1.34″)||102 x 58 x 38 mm (4.00 x 2.29 x 1.51″)|
|Weight||274 g (0.60 lb / 9.60 oz)||200 g (0.44 lb / 7.05 oz)||281 g (0.62 lb / 9.91 oz)|
There are any number of ways to slice and dice the information in the table above. In some respects, the GM1 seems to be miles ahead of the cameras we're comparing it against but in other ways there's an advantage to the Sony or the Pentax. The GM1 offers compatibility with a great many lenses (the Pentax Q 'system' is small and arguably not very 'serious' and the RX100 II's lens is fixed), but it lacks an accessory port or hot shoe. It offers 1080 HD video, but the specification falls short of the RX100's 60p offering. Such is the nature of the current enthusiast market - lots of options, and no clear leader in any single respect. And depending on how you look at it, the GM1 is poised to really shake things up.
|The above chart shows just where the GM1 stands in terms of sensor size. Its Four Thirds sensor is head and shoulders above the Pentax Q7, and larger than the RX100 II's 1" type chip.|
Enthusiasts also tend to be interested not just in the maximum aperture of a camera's lens, but also the size of its sensor, as depth of field control will depend on those two characteristics. Though the GM1 has a larger sensor than the Sony RX100 II, it doesn't really offer better depth of field control, and the RX100 II's ability to zoom out to a 100mm equivalent focal length gives it a little bit of an advantage in blurring backgrounds.
It is certainly true that the GM1 represents a new feat in Micro Four Thirds - not just smaller and lighter than a DSLR but truly pocketable. Does that dramatic size reduction compared to previous M43 offerings come at the expense of features or performance? And does the GM1 come up short in handling and user experience just to nab the title of 'world's smallest'? Read on to find out.
|Guess who forgot to floss this morning! by NPW UK|
from Any Bill
|_MAA3556 by apice|
from Track and Field
|Saint Andrews - The cathedral by vincenzoc|
from Frame it!
|Blue in love by Newlifecamera|
from Seven Story plots - Comedy (and romance)
It seems RED's Hydrogen One super-phone will make it into the hands of customers in the near future. The phone is now officially slated for a Verizon and AT&T release in the US sometime this summer.
You know that feeling when you're already all suited up and out on a spacewalk outside the International Space Station, and only then do you realize you forgot to put the SD card in your GoPro? No? Us either... but one astronaut on the ISS sure does.
From 2015 to 2017, filmmaker Macgregor and his crew spend many months traveling back and forth on the famed Mauritanian Railway—the so-called 'Backbone of the Sahara—to document the grueling journey endured by merchants who regularly travel atop this train. This beautifully-executed short doc is the result.
You can now insert another user's Instagram post into your own Stories as a customized sticker, the first official "regram" feature we've seen from the Facebook-owned photo sharing app.
Synology has added a new 6-bay NAS to its DiskStation+ series, and it's aimed squarely at photographers and medium sized businesses. The DS1618+ can handle up to six 12TB drives, giving it a max capacity of 72TB, or up to 60TB in RAID 5.
Our original gallery for Tamron's new 70-210mm F4 had portraits, slow-moving wildlife and city scenes, but was sorely missing fast action. We remedied that by photographing some motorcycles flying through the air.
This week on DPReview TV, Chris and Jordan prepare for the summer holiday season by putting several popular waterproof cameras to the test. If you're considering a rugged camera for the beach or pool this summer, or if you just want to see what a Chris and Jordan fishing show might look like, tune in.
Soulumination is a non-profit organization that provides life-affirming legacy photography to families facing serious medical conditions, completely free of charge. This video shares the work they are doing.
Fujifilm EU seems to have accidentally leaked an unreleased camera to the masses. The leaked page details a new "X-T100" camera that will share most of its specs with the X-A5, but includes an EVF, deeper buffer, and 3-way tilting touchscreen.
LA-based director and cinematographer Phil Holland of PHFX recently joined forces with Gotham Film Works to create something out-of-this-world. Using a special aerial camera array, Holland shot a flyover of New York City using not one, not two, but three 8K RED Weapon Monstro VistaVision cameras.
According to an interview with the Google Photos team on XDA, object removal simply had a lower priority in the development queue than other features. It might still show up some day... but maybe not.
In a bid to clear up online speculation, surprise entrant to the full frame cinema lens market Nisi has answered some questions about its relationship with brands marketing lenses very similar to its own F3 series.
Now that we've completed our review of Panasonic's Lumix DC-ZS200 (TZ200), we've updated its entry in our Best Cameras for Travel, Best Pocketable Enthusiast Cameras and Best Enthusiast Long Zoom Cameras buying guides.
This useful video guide by The Slanted Lens will get you up to date on the latest TSA rules on flying with lithium ion batteries. If you're getting ready to travel with a bunch of photography gear, this is one to watch.
This product photo was captured using two speedlights to light the bottle, a smartphone to light paint the background, and some Photoshop to pull it all together. Watch the video to see how product photographer Dustin Dolby did it.
The software development kit allows third-party developers to create mobile and desktop apps that can control the camera remotely via USB cable or Wi-Fi.
Fujifilm has been forced to roll back the much-anticipated firmware update v4.0 for the X-T2 released last week due to "malfunctions." Firmware updates for the GFX 50S, X-H1 and X-Pro2 planned for this month have also been delayed as a result.
The Laowa 9mm F2.8 Zero-D is an ultra-wide lens for APS-C mirrorless cameras designed with minimal distortion. We took an E-mount version of the lens out for a spin on the a6500 – take a look at the results.
"...excuse me if I don’t walk around in front of [my client] shooting bloody BTS because somebody on social media wants to see it because they can’t be arsed to attend a proper controlled seminar and learn properly, they’d rather be ‘cheap’ and just try to reverse engineer BTS stuff."
OnePlus has slightly boosted the camera specifics of its news flagship smartphone, the OnePlus 6. Compared to its predecessor, it boasts both a bigger sensor and optical image stabilization.
These newly leaked images and sketches show the upcoming DJI Phantom 5 drone, which will allegedly feature a 1-inch sensor camera with interchangeable lenses.
A piece of leaked code revealed a new feature—since confirmed by Instagram's CEO—that is coming to Instagram. It's called 'time spent,' and it will allow users to track how much time they spend on the photo sharing app so they can be more 'intentional' about it.
The new website and app—developed by Fujifilm USA but available to everyone—will host interviews with X and GFX professionals, run technique articles, and showcase collections of images shot with Fujifilm equipment.
The flagship smartphone by Huawei's sub-brand Honor offers the same Kirin 970 top-end chipset as Huawei's flagships P20 and P20 Pro, but at a significantly lower price point. It also includes some advanced AI scene and object recognition.
One man's feature is another man's bug. Photographer Robert Hall has discovered a quirk about how the live view and EVF on Sony's full-frame mirrorless cameras respond when you attach a flash. Fortunately, he's also found a way to work around it.
Microsoft's Surface Hub 2 is a massive collaborative touchscreen display that may or may not have any practical use for professional photographers... but it sure looks impressive nonetheless.
Google is replacing its existing Google Drive plans with newly packaged Google One plans that are 50% cheaper and come with live chat support. Two terabytes of cloud storage will now cost you just $10/month.
Photographer David Oastler got his hands on an early copy of the Tamron 28-75mm F2.8 Sony FE lens, and while he couldn't take pictures with it, he did get to test its focusing capabilities. The great news: this thing focuses just as fast a Sony native lens.
Canon Rumors is reporting with near-certainty that Canon will unveil two new 70-200mm L-lenses in early June. The site says it is 100% certain the 70-200mm F4L IS II is on the way, and 95% certain the 70-200mm F2.8L IS III will also be announced.