Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1 Review
Panasonic's Lumix DMC-GX1 is the company's latest addition to its G-series lineup. And although the camera bears the '1' appendage in its model name, it is clear from even a cursory glance that with the GX1, Panasonic has provided the long-awaited spiritual successor to the highly regarded Lumix DMC-GF1. Of perhaps even greater significance, the move to introduce a separate GX product line (as opposed to releasing the camera as a 'GF4') would seem to suggest a long-term commitment by the camera maker to meet the demands of enthusiasts who embraced the GF1.
Launched back in 2009, the GF1 was, ironically, Panasonic's attempt to court compact-camera owners looking to upgrade, with what was then billed as, 'the world's smallest, lightest interchangeable lens camera'. Instead, the GF1's high quality Raw output and classic rangefinder aesthetic gained a strong and passionate following in the enthusiast market. DSLR owners looking for a second 'go-anywhere' camera with high image quality embraced the camera's comprehensive external controls and its relatively compact Micro Four Thirds lens offerings.
It is precisely these users who have been disappointed twice over with the Lumix DMC-GF2 and Lumix DMC-GF3 releases. These cameras departed from the GF1's retro styling and button-driven operation. Instead, they favored ever-smaller form factors, and design cues that pointed unambiguously to users who may be turned off by an overly complex (and expensive) camera, including increasing reliance on touchscreen controls. With the GX1 Panasonic is aiming squarely at more advanced users for whom the GF1 struck a pleasing balance between size and operability.
Of course, the competition for these users has grown much stiffer today, and Panasonic recognizes that if it wants to expand the camera's appeal, the GX1 must offer advantages not only to the GF series but to a crowded market that includes strong APS-C sensor competition from both Sony and Samsung. To this end, the GX1 employs the same 16MP sensor we first saw in the Lumix DMC-G3, although with image processing adjustments that allow for a top ISO of 12,800.
A brand new viewfinder, the DMW-LVF2 has been introduced alongside the GX1. With a higher magnification and resolution, the LVF2 is a noticeable improvement over its predecessor, the LVF1. Crucially though, a new spec and connector makes the LVF2 incompatible with any GF models; neither is it possible to fit the LVF1 on the GX1. Faster communication between the camera and lenses helps the GX1 focus even faster than the 120Hz sensor readout allowed in the preceding G3 and GF3 models, with Panasonic claiming a 10% improvement.
Panasonic's well-regarded touchscreen interface has also gotten some new tricks, with a level gauge and clever Touch Tab icon that allows you to hide, reveal (and of course activate) a small panel of menu options directly on-screen. Another very welcome feature is the inclusion of an orientation sensor that automatically rotates vertical images even when captured with non-OIS lenses.
The GX1 is being made available in both black and silver bodies. Unlike previous GF models, none of the GX1's kit options includes a fixed focal length lens. Instead, the kit lens options are limited to just two; the Lumix G X Vario PZ 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH Power OIS zoom lens and the more conventional (and less expensive) Lumix G Vario 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 ASPH OIS lens.
By creating a separate product line for the GX, Panasonic has made clear distinctions in its G-series offerings. The GF line is positioned as entry point for compact-camera upgraders. The GH2 is designed for users who shoot a lot of video and the G3 is aimed for (primarily) still shooters who desire a built-in EVF and articulated LCD. The GX1 then is rather sensibly positioned as an enthusiast offering for those who want the highest image quality from a Micro Four Thirds camera, in a form factor that comfortably accommodates a range of zoom lenses and does not skimp on external controls.
Panasonic GX1 specification highlights
- 16MP Micro Four Thirds sensor
- ISO 160-12,800
- Orientation sensor (providing information with non-OIS lenses)
- 3.0", 460k dot LCD
- Full AVCHD 1080/60i video (from 30fps sensor output)
- Continuous shooting up to 20fps (at reduced resolution)
- Electronic level gauge
- Four available Fn buttons (two onscreen)
Differences between the GX1 and the GF1
- Higher resolution sensor (16MP vs 12MP)
- Touchscreen interface
- Much-improved screen coatings for better visibility in bright light
- Faster AF acquisition times
- Top ISO of 12,800 (vs 3200)
- Continuous full resolution shooting at 4fps (vs 3fps)
- Higher burst depth in Raw mode (11 vs 5)
- AVCHD 1080/60i video (vs 720p AVCHD Lite format)
- Built-in stereo microphones
- Electronic level gauge
- Two additional Fn buttons
- No drive mode lever
Compared to the Samsung NX200
What's not evident in the images above is just how much more heft the GX1 has in comparison to the NX200. With a solid metal body construction that weighs in at nearly 320g without a lens, the GX1 feels in hand rather substantial, in a way that calls to mind not only the GF1, but classic film camera bodies.
Compared to the Sony NEX-7
Although the GX1 has slightly smaller dimensions in both width and depth, it's worth remembering that that Sony has managed to pack a built-in EVF, articulating LCD and of course an APS-C sensor into the NEX-7. The GX1's more conventional control point layout stands in sharp contrast to the sleek, hewn-from-a block-of-granite design of the NEX-7. Both cameras offer a sure, firm grip, although users with larger hands may find one-handed shooting slightly less comfortable with the lower profile handgrip of the GX1.
|Fairy garden by Jill Hancock|
|Avro Vulcan Heavy Bomber by cjf2|
from Seven types of aircraft - heavy bombers
The Kodak-branded 'Kashminer' Bitcoin mining scheme announced at CES has apparently collapsed, with Eastman Kodak distancing itself from the company behind it.
The software uses computational imaging techniques to boost detail and dynamic range in your images, and reduce noise levels.
As part of a promotional giveaway, Fujifilm Korea has released kimchi-flavored instant noodles wrapped in branding inspired by Fujifilm Provia 100 color reversal film.
The Leica Noctilux-M 75mm F1.25 ASPH is a fast, high-quality and decidedly heavyweight short telephoto prime lens, designed for use with Leica's digital M-series rangefinders. We've been grappling with it for a little while - take a look at our sample images.
70-200mm F4 zoom lenses may not get as much attention as their faster F2.8 siblings, but for many photographers these lenses hit the perfect sweet spot of price, performance, and weight. This week, we shoot the new Tamron 70-210mm F4 alongside the equivalent Canon and Nikon models to see how they stack up.
Blackmagic recently worked with Apple to develop Blackmagic eGPU, an external GPU that brings "desktop-class graphics performance" to the new MacBook Pro laptops with Thunderbolt 3 ports.
Lightroom alternative Luminar has received numerous updates across both its Mac and Windows versions, primarily improvements to existing features, as well as support for additional cameras from Fujifilm, Sony, Olympus, Panasonic, Canon, and Pentax.
Sony has quietly updated its RX100 V, bringing a couple of the goodies from the RX100 VI travel zoom. The updated RX100 VA gains a new processor and various firmware tweaks but misses out on the VI's other hardware improvements.
Apple has updated its MacBook Pro series of notebooks with 15in and 13in models that are claimed to be better for intense image and video editing. The company says the new models are the most advanced ever, and that they feature 8th generation Intel Core processors for faster performance.
According to sources familiar with the matter, Adobe will announce a full-fledged Photoshop version for the iPad at its annual conference in October.
The last day to place an order for Apple photo prints and related products is September 30th.
Manfrotto has launched its new Noreg camera bag series with the Backpack-30 and Messenger-30 models. Both bags are designed for premium mirrorless camera systems, each featuring internal camera units that can be removed and used independently of the larger bags.
Industrial designer Thomas Müller has created a concept device that attempts to democratize film development using an all-in-one device that sits on your countertop.
Mastin Labs has released its latest set of presets titled 'Kodak Everyday.' The pack includes film emulation presets for iconic Kodak films, including Ektar, Gold and Tri-X.
Canon has released firmware update 1.0.4 for the EOS 6D Mark II, adding important bug fixes for "rare instances" of issues with the touch panel and operation buttons.
In an email to DPReview, Nikon Inc. has confirmed ''The Nikon 1 series cameras, lenses and accessories are no longer in production'.
Nikon's new Coolpix P1000 boasts an extraordinary zoom range and a suite of powerful stills and video features in a (relatively) compact body. We're taking a detailed look at this powerful compact's key features.
PhotoMirage, a new Windows application from software company Corel, transforms images into "mirages" by adding movement to elements like water or clouds. Unlike a cinemagraph, it does not require video footage – instead animating a single static image.
Tamron's version 2.0 firmware update for its 28-75mm F2.8 Di III RXD claims to have addressed reported issues with autofocus during video shooting.
Lens maker Moment is leaning into the software sector, launching a newly-revamped smartphone camera app targeted at enthusiast photographers.
A groups of researchers from NVIDIA, MIT, and Aalto University have developed an AI capable of removing noise and grain from images with incredible accuracy.
If the 24-2000mm equiv. zoom range on Nikon's Coolpix P900 just wasn't enough then you'll be excited about today's announcement of the Coolpix P1000. This camera has a once unthinkable 24-3000mm equivalent F2.8-F8 lens, though it's anything but light and will set you back $999.
Hong Kong flash system manufacturer Cactus has released new firmware for its V6 II Transceiver that will allow it to wirelessly communicate TTL information between a Canon or Cactus flash and a Canon camera. The X-TTL update makes it possible to trigger Canon flashes and retain full TTL control with that flash either on or off camera.
Want to create pro quality lighting for your videos, but don't have thousands of dollars to spend on expensive video lights? In this video, our friends over at ShareGrid demonstrate how to professionally light a model with some work lights, a bit of poster board and even a shower curtain.
Phase One has launched its new Latitude processing presets series, the latest addition to the company's Capture One Style Packs product launched last year. Both Latitude style packs contain eight presets, each with original, bright, and dark variations, for a total of 24 styles per pack.
Godox has announced the impending launch of its upcoming AD400Pro, a 400WS monolight with wireless shooting capabilities and a battery life of 390 full-powered flashes.
The instant camera market is heating up, and with four formats and 15+ cameras to choose from, we felt it was high time to examine them all and pick our favorite.
There's an old axiom in filmmaking which states that an audience will forgive a poor quality picture, but not poor quality sound. This week, Chris and Jordan bring in an audio pro to demonstrate why a cheap microphone positioned correctly will outperform an expensive model placed incorrectly.
With enough reach to land itself in 'travel zoom' territory, the Sony RX100 VI is well suited for a wide range of shooting situations. We've made a significant update to our initial sample gallery with plenty of samples from the past few weeks.