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Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7 Expert Review

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7 Expert Review - Read our full review of the new Panasonic Lumix GX7, the only mirrorless camera with a tilting viewfinder. Find out how it performs.

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Category : Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
Product : Panasonic Lumix GX7
Price : £819
Rating :
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Features
Handling
Performance
Verdict
Specification

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Black (2)

The Panasonic Lumix GX7 is the latest premium mirrorless camera from Panasonic and introduces a number of unique features, including a tilting EVF built into the body, a tilting 3 inch touch screen, a completely new Panasonic sensor, as well as in-body sensor shift image stabilisation, which will benefit anyone who shoots with lenses without built in IS, such as the Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 or Olympus Micro Four Thirds lenses, as well as legacy lenses such as Leica lenses used with an adapter.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Features

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Black (5)

The GX7 features a new Panasonic sensor, with improved colour saturation, improved light sensitivity, and improved signal to noise performance, thanks to improvements made on the sensor, with larger on-chip lenses, a larger light receiving photo-diode, as well as improved low noise signal readout circuitry. Panasonic claim that this gives the new sensor better Signal to Noise performance, ie better low light / ISO performance than the Olympus OM-D E-M5.

The Panasonic Lumix GX7 features a magnesium body, and a metal mode dial on top, giving it the look and styling of a compact digital rangefinder. The body also features front and rear control wheels, with the front control wheel surrounding the shutter release button. The rear control wheel can be pushed in and used as an exposure compensation dial. 

The electronic viewfinder is an LCD unit with 2764k dot resolution and 100% Adobe RGB colour reproduction, this gives more accurate colour reproduction, however it isn’t as fast at updating as the OLED viewfinders as used in the G6 and GH3.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Black (15)

Key Features

  • 16 megapixel live MOS sensor
  • Micro Four Thirds lens mount
  • Sensor shift image stabilisation
  • 3inch 1040k dot tilting touch-screen
  • 2764k dot tilting electronic viewfinder (EVF)
  • Full HD Video 60/50p (in body IS not active)
  • ISO200-25600, ISO125 extended mode
  • -4 EV Focus
  • 4.2fps continuous AF
  • 9fps continuous shooting single AF
  • 22 Creative Effects, HDR
  • Panoramic mode, with filters
  • NFC / Wi-Fi connectivity

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Handling

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Black (8)

The camera features a large rubber grip, this goes from the back of the camera, all the way around the front giving a good area to hold on to, although there is no lip or additional raised bit on the back for your thumb.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Black (10)

With a magnesium body and a good weight, the camera feels extremely well built, with the moving parts, such as the tilting EVF, screen as well as the pop-up flash feeling solidly constructed with metal hinges. To access the side sockets including HDMI, USB, and remote socket, you need to lift the rubber cover, and to do this you need to first tilt the screen out of the way.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Black (11)

There are a number of customisable function buttons and controls, with four function buttons on the rear, as well as "soft" function buttons on the touch screen. The front and rear dial operation can be customised, letting you set which controls shutter and aperture, and there are three custom positions on the mode dial where you can register your favourite setup. The buttons can seem a little small at times, particularly the LVF / Fn4 button.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Black (13)

When using Panasonic OIS lenses, the camera will prioritise lens based IS as this is better than the in camera stabilisation. Unfortunately, the in camera sensor-shift image stabilisation is not available while recording video.


Focus peaking is built in to assist manual focus, with options to set how sensitive it is, as well as change the highlight colour. Picture in picture (PIP) focusing is another new feature that lets zoom in up to 10x to aid manual focus. The focus area can be selected using the touch screen, and the magnified view can be moved around the screen, as shown in the video above. Focus peaking also works in movie mode, both before recording, as well as during recording of video, which would make it extremely useful for use with legacy lenses.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 EVF Views (7)

EVF: The electronic viewfinder, which Panasonic call the LVF (Live Viewfinder) is a 16:9 aspect ratio LCD unit with 100% AdobeRGB coverage, and 2764K dots or 2,764,800 dots to be exact. The tilting EVF is not very easy to accidentally knock out of place. It's easy to move, but it is also held in place firmly when in the down or closed position. If you use it with the left eye, the screen gets pretty smudged, and the EVF seems quite comfortable in both left or right eye use. 

Panasonic Lumix GX7 LVF Photo Panasonic Lumix GX7 LVF Video
EVF in Photo mode (4:3) EVF in Video mode (16:9)

The viewfinder is a 16:9 aspect ratio LCD - so in 4:3 photo mode, the image is on the right, and in 16:9 the whole LCD is used (for example video recording), as shown above.

The camera has a very good grip for your right hand, so when the EVF is used, it gives the camera another stabiliser, then with your left hand you can hold the lens, thus giving three points of contact so that you are holding the camera as steady as possible. 

The screen works well, even outdoors in bright light, and tilted it has a reasonable amount of friction, so that it stays in place when using the touch screen so long as your touch isn't excessively forceful - it's responsive enough so that you shouldn't need to press too hard.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 EVF Views (4)

Wi-Fi - The built in Wi-Fi gives the Panasonic Lumix GX7 a number of features, including the ability to connect it to a smartphone or tablet running Android or iOS. First you need to install the Panasonic Image App from the app store, and then you're able to connect to the camera via Wi-Fi, or using NFC to setup the connection if your phone has it. The app gives three main modes of operation, the first as a remote control for the camera, giving you access to a number of options and settings, including the Q. menu, touch focus and shutter release, as well as stop motion animation. The second mode is playback, and lets you view images, as well as transfer them to the phone or delete them. The third mode is the GPS logging option, to let you record your location, and then it's possible to add GPS location information to photos.

Panasonic Image App Tablet - Remote Shooting Panasonic Image App Tablet - Thumbs Panasonic Image App Tablet - View One Image
Remote Shooting Thumbs View One Image

Apart from the Panasonic Image App, there are also a number of other Wi-Fi features built in to the camera, letting you automatically transfer images to the smartphone after shooting, backup to your computer, or share to social network sites. Although sharing to social network sites requires setup of the Lumix gateway account, which does require some PC use to then enable the Facebook (or other website) connection.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Black (18)

Battery life - Battery life is rated at 320 shots according to Panasonic / CIPA test results, and it seemed reasonably good, for a days shooting, although if you regularly shoot a lot before charging the battery, then a 2nd battery may be a worthwhile investment.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Black (16)

Speed - We took a number of shots to test the camera's responsiveness, from switch on to first photo, shot to shot, focusing speed etc. We take a number of shots and then use the average to ensure accurate and consistent tests, making it easy to compare with other cameras.

  Panasonic Lumix GX7
Shutter Response 0.05
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response 0.175
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response 0.175
Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 II ASPH. 0.5
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo 1.1
Shot to Shot without Flash 0.4
Shot to Shot with Flash 1.0
Continuous Shooting - JPEG
(shots before slow down)
5.3fps (63 shots)
Continuous Shooting - JPEG - Electronic Shutter 9fps (24 shots)
Continuous Shooting - Flash N/A
Continuous Shooting - RAW 5fps (10 shots)

Shutter response and focus speeds with the kit lens is excellent, with a quick switch on time, as well as fast continuous shooting. Although unfortunately the Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 II lens was not as quick at focusing. Continuous shooting is quick at 5.3fps when shooting with the mechanical shutter, or 9fps when shooting with the electronic shutter. Focus speeds in low-light conditions are quite impressive, with the camera being able to focus quickly in conjunction with the AF-assist light.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Performance

Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Sample Photos


Sample Photos - There is no red-eye in the portrait photo with flash, and colour and detail are both very good. The camera gives reliable exposure and consistent white balance results shooting outdoors.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Lens test images


Lens Performance - Detail is very good from the kit lens at both ends of the lens, and regardless of which kit lens you choose with the camera, they generally perform well. Macro performance is a little disappointing, and for better macro shots a different lens is recommended, and we have used a dedicated macro lens here. Purple fringing and chromatic aberrations are low, with the camera correcting this in camera. Exposure is reliable, with the camera coping well in a variety of situations, and the provided deep petal shaped hood gives good protection against lens flare. HDR is available in JPEG only, not RAW.

Using the inbuilt sensor-shift image stabilisation, it was possible to take sharp shots at 1/20th of a second, with the 20mm f/1.7 II lens (40mm equivalent). With the inbuilt sensor-shift image stabilisation switched off, the shutter speed needed for a sharp shot was 1/40th of a second. 

Panasonic Lumix GX7 ISO test images


ISO Noise Performance - The ISO range goes from ISO200 to ISO25600, and the lowest ISO setting can be extended to ISO125. Compared to the Olympus OM-D E-M5, the GX7 images at ISO125 and ISO200 show smoother results, with slightly less grain visible, although the E-M5 shows more fine detail. Noise results at ISO400, ISO800, and ISO1600 are very similar, however with the E-M5 retaining slightly more fine detail. This is the case at ISO3200, where noise results are very similar, although there is a slightly higher level of noise in mid greys from the GX7. Again at ISO6400 results are very similar, with both cameras smudging detail. At ISO12800 image quality from the E-M5 deteriorates, and at ISO25600 the images from the GX7 show better results, although the highest ISO setting on both cameras is best avoided if at all possible. Noise performance at high ISO settings of ISO12800 and ISO25600 are noticeably improved over the Panasonic Lumix G6. We have used manual white balance for these shots.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 White-balance test images


White Balance Performance - Auto White Balance (AWB) performs well under tungsten light, with a slightly warm result. The tungsten preset gives a slightly more neutral image, and the AWB performs extremely well under fluorescent light. As with other Panasonic cameras, there is no fluorescent preset available.

Scenery Colour Pano | 1/640 sec | f/4.5 | 20.0 mm | ISO 200
Scenery Colour Pano | 1/640 sec | f/4.5 | 20.0 mm | ISO 200

Impressive Art Pano | 1/640 sec | f/5.6 | 20.0 mm | ISO 200
Impressive Art Pano | 1/640 sec | f/5.6 | 20.0 mm | ISO 200

Panorama mode - The Panoramic mode does a good job of stitching the photos together automatically as you pan the camera, although movement of subjects, such as people walking, can result in ghosting. You can also use effects on panoramic photos.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Outdoor images


Examples above show iDynamic High, High Dynamic Creative mode and HDR - the HDR mode is not available when shooting raw. The built in HDR mode, or iDynamic option will help give better dynamic range if required.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Digital filters


Digital Filters -The GX7 has a total of 22 Creative Effects, with a number of additional black and white modes such as rough mono, and silky mono, that give the option of applying a black and white filter, such as Green, Red, Blue etc, to give the same effect as shooting black and white film with a filter attached. The camera records both the JPEG and raw file so you can go back to the original image if you don't like the effect.

Video - Options include AVCHD/MP4 compression, 50/25/24p and full HD, as well as filter effects and full manual controls. You can use 'Extra Tele Conv' that crops from the centre of the frame, giving you zoomed in full HD video without any image quality loss. If you want to be able to use optical zoom while recording, then a power zoom lens is recommended as it can be difficult to zoom smoothly with a manual zoom lens. In manual movie mode it's possible to change the shutter speed / aperture with the dials on the front and back of the camera. The built in image stabilisation is not active during video recording, so for best results a Panasonic lens with optical image stabilisation, or a tripod, is recommended. Focus peaking is available before recording as well as during recording, for manual focus. Additional GX7 videos can be seen on the ePHOTOzine YouTube Channel.


Value For Money

The Panasonic Lumix GX7 is priced at £819 body only, or £899 with 14-42mm OIS II lens, which puts it in the same price range as a number of other premium mirrorless cameras. It's also unique in that it is the only camera with a built in tilting electronic viewfinder. Alternatives to look at include the following:

Olympus OM-D E-M5, weather sealed, £795 body only, £949 with 12-50mm lens
Olympus PEN E-P5, no built in EVF, £848 body only, £979 with 14-42mm lens
Sony NEX-6, with Wi-Fi, EVF, £595 with 16-50mm power zoom lens.
Sony NEX-7, with EVF, £689 body only, £789 with 18-55mm lens.
Fujifilm X-E1, with EVF, £599 body only.

You'll also need to buy a memory card and a case or bag to keep your camera safe and protected - have a look at our complete guide to camera bags.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Verdict

The Panasonic Lumix GX7 offers some unique new features, including an extremely high resolution tilting electronic viewfinder, a high resolution 3inch tilting touch screen, as well as built in sensor-shift image stabilisation. In addition to this, the camera comes with new creative effects, highlight / shadow tone adjustment, high speed 9fps continuous shooting, as well as 4.2fps continuous shooting with AF, built in flash, and a high shutter speed of 1/8000th of a second.

The GX7 offers an extremely compelling package, with excellent build quality, a stylish design, and a number of ways to customise the operation of the camera. In camera image stabilisation is an excellent addition, particularly for those who like to switch between different lens manufacturers, or for those that have lenses without optical image stabilisation built in. It's just a shame that the image stabilisation isn't available in movie mode, and while the electronic shutter does allow for silent operation, there is the risk of rolling shutter, a second battery may also be useful.

As the specifications, features, and technology available in mirrorless or compact system cameras increases, with continuing improvements in image quality and performance, it's becoming increasingly difficult to justify the purchase of a large and often bulky Digital SLR. The Panasonic Lumix GX7 introduces a truly unique experience thanks to the tilting electronic viewfinder, and with a new sensor the camera delivers excellent image quality, with particularly impressive noise performance beating the previous class leader at high ISO settings. 


 
 
  The Panasonic Lumix GX7 delivers an abundance of features and backs it up with class leading image quality. 

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Pros

Impressive noise performance
Focus peaking in photo and video mode
Wi-Fi built in - remote operation
Great image quality
Panoramic mode with effects
Lens hood provided with kit lens
Very high resolution tilting EVF
High resolution tilting touch-screen
Fast operation, focus, shot to shot
Access to a wide range of Micro Four Thirds lenses
In camera image stabilisation
Stop motion animation
Digital filters

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Cons

Electronic / rolling shutter effect
Loud shutter compared to E-M5
Would be nice if Wi-Fi supported direct uploads to social media sites
Sensor-shift image stabilisation not effective in video mode
Battery life could be better

FEATURES  
HANDLING  
PERFORMANCE  
VALUE FOR MONEY  
VERDICT  

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Specifications

ManufacturerPanasonic
Image Sensor
CCD pixels16Mp (Megapixels)
Pixels (W)4592
Pixels (H)3448
Sensor TypeLive MOS Sensor
Sensor SizeMicro / Four Thirds
Sensor Size (width)17.3mm
Sensor Size (height)13mm
Aspect Ratio
  • 4:3
  • 3:2
  • 16:9
  • 1:1
LCD Monitor
LCD Monitor3in
Screen resolution1040k dots
Touch ScreenYes
Focusing
Focusing modes
  • Autofocus
  • Manual
  • Spot
  • Face Detection
  • AF Tracking
  • Multi
  • Centre
  • Touch AF
Exposure Control
Shutter speeds shortest1/8000sec
Shutter speeds longest60sec
Exp modes
  • Program
  • Aperture-Priority
  • Shutter-Priority
  • Manual
  • Scene modes
  • Program Variable
Metering
  • Centre-weighted - Average
  • Multi Pattern
  • Centre Spot
ISO sensitivity125 - 25600
White balance
  • Auto
  • Manual
  • Outdoors/Daylight
  • Incandescent
  • Cloudy
  • Shade
  • Flash
Exposure Comp+/-5
Viewfinder
Viewfinder Resolution2764k dots
Shooting Options
Continuous shooting9fps
Video
Movie modeYes
Video Resolution
  • 1920x1080
  • 1280x720 720p
Video FPS60/50/25/24p
Stereo SoundYes
Optical Zoom with VideoYes
Other Features
Image StabilisationYes
Interface
HDMIYes
USBUSB 2
Storage
Card Type
  • SD
  • SDHC
  • SDXC
File Type
  • RAW
  • JPG
  • RAW + JPG
Power Source
Battery TypeLithium-Ion Battery
CIPA Rating320
Box Contents
Box ContentsDigital camera, Body cap, Lens, Lens hood, Lens Cap, Lens rear cap, Battery pack, Battery charger, USB connection cable, CD-ROM, Shoulder strap, Hot shoe cover, operating instructions.
Dimensions
Weight402g
Width122.6mm
Height70.7mm
Depth43.3mm

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Photographs taken using the Panasonic Lumix GX7

HISTORIC WINTERSea Mistress...INGOGNITOBone of Contention ...ILLUMINATED HISTORYALOOF!HO! HO!Woodstock...BOY RACERPUSHED FOR TIMEGOING TO SEEDUnder a cloud ENGLISH ROSEBIG YIN!Helen V ...
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Comments


1 Aug 2013 2:02PM
Viewfinder Resolution 2760k dots! ...You mean 2,764,800?

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jan 1 e2
10 12 Netherlands
7 Aug 2013 11:00AM
Thanks for the very good info about this perfect camera. Still enjoying my Panasonic DMC-TZ8.
But my next one will be this..!
Jan
Hi

To me I would personally not buy this camera over some of the other similar offerings. I recently purchased a NEX-6 and lens for 505 it is very good and produces images I like. Had I waited until September I could not see me going 400 more for this camera.

I cannot see this camera reproducing images any better for 400 more!

Ok it has some nice features - the EVF tilts etc but a camera is about reproducing the photographers image to the best results that it can and I cannot see this camera doing that any better than an OMD5, NEX6 or XE-1.

am I missing something here?
For years Olympus users have been struggling with noise reduction because Panasonic has been able to only build sensors with second best signal to noise performance. Now that Olympus has thrown in the towel & gone to a Sony sensor, Panasonic has found religion and is building a sensor that out does the Oly OMD? My goodness, what took them so long?
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
8 Aug 2013 7:29PM

Quote:am I missing something here?


Yes, because you assume that all other photographers think the same way you do.

This camera is very different from the ones you mention, cheaper than some, dearer than others. People make their judgements based on different criteria than you.

What you are doing is not looking at this camera but justifying your own choice.

Take me, for example. Why would I buy a Sony when I have a bag full of MFT lenses much smaller than the Sony 12-35 f2.8 and 35-100 f2.8 (if they make them) would be? The point of MFT is not the camera body size, it is the lens size.
joshwa e2
4 710 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 9:56AM
Full review now live. Cheers.
ajdh e2
6 2 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 10:58AM
Mine is on order. Smile
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 11:02AM
Mine too!
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 12:11PM
Yeah I'm thinking I may buy this rather than a GH3 or OMD - I can't really justify both and the overall package here would make either of the other two feel a little outdated and second best.

I thought the GF1 was a camera all about the promise of the m4/3 format - it's taken them a while, but it finally looks like Panasonic have come up with a camera that could achieve that sort of classic status.
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 2:51PM

Quote: the overall package here would make either of the other two feel a little outdated and second best.


The GH3 is so different from this new one that i don't see much of a comparison. The GH3 has been designed with ergonomics first and the larger body with its multiple Fn buttons allows for physical control of so many parameters that it is rare to need the menu for anything once you have set it up.

With the battery grip it fits the hand like a glove for portrait or landscape and will shoot way more than 1000 pics without flattening the power. I've never in my years of pro photography encountered such a well designed camera and menu system.

The GX7 body strikes me as a cut down version of the GH3. I've ordered one as my 'always with me' camera, smaller, baggable, if not pocketable with the 14-42 compact zoom fitted and with the great advantage of similar IQ.

I'm not disagreeing with anything you say, ChrisV. I can see that if you were using DSLRs this new one is the one to have of the either/ or choice. But a brace of MFTs, a GH3 and a GX7 is coming ever closer to my photographic holy grail and I see them as brilliantly complementary rather than making one outdated or second best.
Hi, was the gx7 used for this review equipped with final firmware >/=V1.0?

If so...I'm not impressed with several of the pictures showed comparing them with the E-P5.
...and I'm talking about the ISO200 pictures. Nothing fancy like ISO25600 pictures!

The GX7-Picture has a more yellowish tone, the E-P5 is tending more to blue.
I've crosschecked this it on an iMac27 as on some standard DELL screens.

If you look on both pictures at "X-Rite ColorChecker..." text , the image of it, is a lot clearer and has more edge on the E-P5 than on the GX7.

The same for the squares below the X-RITE.. texting.

So if this is really the final firmware...I would opt out of my reservation and buy the E-P5 + VF4 and some time later on.

Comments?

Cheers

Lawrence
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 3:58PM

Quote:
With the battery grip it fits the hand like a glove for portrait or landscape and will shoot way more than 1000 pics without flattening the power. I've never in my years of pro photography encountered such a well designed camera and menu system.

The GX7 body strikes me as a cut down version of the GH3. I've ordered one as my 'always with me' camera, smaller, baggable, if not pocketable with the 14-42 compact zoom fitted and with the great advantage of similar IQ.

I'm not disagreeing with anything you say, ChrisV. I can see that if you were using DSLRs this new one is the one to have of the either/ or choice. But a brace of MFTs, a GH3 and a GX7 is coming ever closer to my photographic holy grail and I see them as brilliantly complementary rather than making one outdated or second best.



I know what you're saying Dave - ideally I'd have both. I already own a G3, a GX1 and a GF5 [got virtually 'for free' with the 14-42x lens]. My intention is to sell my APSc kit but hold on to my 5DII+L glass (for the time being). I will also very probably be buying the 12-35 and 35-100 zooms. But that's a lot of expense. If you were going to invest in just one higher end m4/3 body [mainly for stills] in my position...

I do tend to shoot quite a lot of low-light - if it were the biggest criterion and critical I might not use m4/3 [at least on its own] anyway. But good low-light performance [and focusing] is always something that tempts me, which along with its seemingly excellent EVF, is putting the GX7 at the top of my list. I also like the fact that with the 20mm pancake or 14-42x it is [large] pocketable without sacrificing too much manual control. It's just ticking too many boxes for me to over look.
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 4:02PM

Quote:.I would opt out of my reservation and buy the E-P5 + VF4 and some time later on.


The RW2 file is excellent. Unfortunateley, JPG isn't really useful for judging with cameras like these and that appears to be all there is for the Olympus.

I have a GH3 and from the factory prefer the JPG results from my E-Pl5 with the OM-D sensor. However, I export my JPGs from RAW and can make either camera produce better results for my taste than the makers do.

Do you buy cameras wholly on IQ, Lawrence? That's always been second or third on my list because even my GH2 produced IQ good enough for my needs. If IQ was the main consideration, wouldn't a bigger sensor be better?

Having said that, I don't make massive prints or have a vast monitor (1920px across), so once I got to GH2 quality it didn't make much difference to me, slob that I am Grin
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 4:10PM

Quote:It's just ticking too many boxes for me to over look.


Yes, me too. With the 14-42 compact or the 20mm it should be a great compact outfit.

I have one of the new 14-140 f3.5 zooms, too. That will be remarkable for such a range in such a small camera/lens combo. Not pocketable, though so I think the little zoom will be its main partner.

Anti-shake with the 20mm though. Nice!
Review indicates in the summary 'Loud shutter compared to E-M5' but never mentions it in the review itself. Wonder if they attempted the electronic quiet shutter mode.
David
joshwa e2
4 710 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 6:42PM

Quote:Review indicates in the summary 'Loud shutter compared to E-M5' but never mentions it in the review itself. Wonder if they attempted the electronic quiet shutter mode.
David



Hi, yes we did, which is silent as mentioned in the conclusion, however there is the risk of the rolling shutter effect.

RAW files are available from the Olympus PEN E-P5 as well:
http://www.ephotozine.com/article/olympus-pen-e-p5-csc-review-22370
What is the rolling shutter effect? I have read somewhere where one reviewer tried the silent electronic shutter and said they would probably use it a lot. I was hoping that would be an advantage over the Sony Nexus 6 which has a louder shutter than my Pentax K-5.
Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
9 Aug 2013 7:22PM
This promises to be the best compact packaged street or days out CSC ever, very interesting.
joshwa e2
4 710 United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 7:27PM
Hi David,

Rolling shutter:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rolling_shutter

This can affect photos giving images a warped effect, if there is any movement. (From the subject or while holding the camera).

So it is an option to use the electronic shutter, however I wouldn't want to miss a shot due to using the electronic shutter. We put things like this in the negatives list, so that people are aware of it, and also in the hope that for future versions of the camera, Panasonic may be able to work on the issue,

Thanks

Josh
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
9 Aug 2013 7:35PM
The sensor is read sequentially which rakes about 1/10th of a second. So, if you take a picture of a rapidly moving object, say a car, moving across the frame, the top of the car is recorded and then the bottom of the car recorded 1/10th of a second later, pro rata across the frame.

It gives a kind of 'leaning effect'. In 99% of shots it doesn't matter but just needs to be kept in mind for sideways shots. A person walking sideways across the frame won't be a problem but Usain Bolt might.

I use the electronic shutter half of the time for the stuff I do. It enables you to do thousands of pix between charges. Personally, I wouldn't call it call it silent mode, I'd call it stealth mode Smile

You used to get a similar effect on old plate cameras with vertical focal plane shutter.

Here's an example of the effect. I've chosen the subject to give the worst possible example of the rolling shutter effect. Interestingly, if you do an accurate pan of the vehicle, it will look normal but the back ground houses will lean.

I'm afraid it is a link because I can't post images.

It is here
Thanks Josh.
Sounds like this would work for me. The 'rolling shutter' effect would be similar to one of the classic photographs of Lartigue:
http://www.masters-of-photography.com/L/lartigue/lartigue_car_trip_full.html
If an activity like the car situation was accompanied by this much ambient noise you could use the regular shutter and the other quiet situations with no fast movement could use the quiet electronic shutter.
David

Quote:.I would opt out of my reservation and buy the E-P5 + VF4 and some time later on.

@Lemmy
Naaaa...OK...I would change it to "maybe" opt out" Wink

After the E-P1, the GX7 is the second cam who's calling me in my dreams to buy "her" Wink

Luckely my dealer is an authorised dealer for Olympus and Panasonic as well.
I'll try both and decided then. Grin

I admit...I'm a jpeg-shooter! Don't like the whole raw-post-processing thing.
I've checked several ISO-Images from reviews on ephotozine and the GX7 ISO-Images must be out of WB. Like I wrote before..... to yellowish.

Still I'm interested to hear if the firmware in the GX7 used for this review, is the one who will go in to production.

Any other reviews/previews I have read insofar (from Spain/Germany/Holland..etc) tested with firmware versions from V.02-V.04 and therefore not final and any result should be taken with a (large) grain of salt. Just quoting one reviewer from Germany.

Would be nice to get some feedback from the ePhotozine staff.

If the firmware is actually final.....then...the GX7 will be faster in the shops as expected Grin

What I can infer from the review is that E-M5 shows more fine detail up to ISO 3200. Could you please expatiate on AWB and exposure of this camera compared to that of E-M5 a little more. I have difficulty choosing one of these cameras. IQ is the deciding factor for me.
THX
dandeakin e2
7 207 3 England
10 Aug 2013 3:45AM
I'd like to know how the GX7 view finder compares in terms of size to a full frame DSLR. I compared the view finder on an O-MD to my D700 and found the former tiny in comparison. I kept my viewfinderless e-pl3 instead of changing it for the OM-D.

I'm very happy with using the tilting LCD's most of the time. I ask because if I wouldn't bother using the Viewfinder much because it was so small compared to what I normally use on a full frame DSLR then the new e-p5 becomes just as attractive.

Thanks for the great review.
dandeakin e2
7 207 3 England
10 Aug 2013 4:17AM
I'd also be interested to know how good the stabilisation is compared to the Olympus on body stabilisation - the review says you can shoot at 1/20s rather than 1/40s which suggests only 1 stop benefit. I'd have thought / hoped it'd be abit more than that given that most new lenses claim 4 stops of benefit?
boone e2
3 10 United States
10 Aug 2013 5:55AM
I just did a comparison at ISO 200 and 3200 using your high res images and frankly, the color is just plain awful compared to the Sony RX1R, the Fuji XM-1 and the Leica X Vario. Compare the color charts side by side to see what I mean. The colors are a muddied brownish cast on all colors. Whits are like dirty sheets, gray look like poop, etc. Yet you rated the camera 5 stars. Color rendition is a significant factor and the camera really doesn't appear to have it. Also, high ISO (3200) was visibly smeared and did not match up to any of the other cameras. Using your color checker samples, the EM-5 blows away the GX7 on color and high ISO. Is there something wrong with your examples? If not this camera won't make it once people see the color it produces.
joshwa e2
4 710 United Kingdom
10 Aug 2013 10:35AM
Hi we tested using auto white balance. The ISO test shots are taken under mixed light. We will reshoot on Monday with manual white balance to show colour reproduction. Thanks Josh
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
10 Aug 2013 1:22PM

Quote: Color rendition is a significant factor and the camera really doesn't appear to have it


I'm always confused about whether people are taking about RAW or JPG. If JPG, color rendition can be altered to taste, as can noise reduction.

The only real comparison is RAW output where the native output (in principle) can be compared.

With cameras at this level, shooting JPG is more of a test of the makers view of the preferences of an average user than the camera's capability.
boone e2
3 10 United States
10 Aug 2013 4:10PM
As you may note from ePHOTOzine staff, to color rendition is the rendition produced by them in their high resolution test shots above. The distance that they are off is evident in any side by side comparison with other similar tests performed by them. It is either a white balance issue or the camera's handling of white balance or the cameras handling of color as produced by the sensor. On the noise issue, smearing is clearly visible at higher ISOs in order to reduce noise, much more than on the EM-5.
10 Aug 2013 6:42PM
Lack of audio/mic input Sad I wish there's an option for this...
boone e2
3 10 United States
10 Aug 2013 7:05PM
I just reread joshwa's response to my post on color and I was surprised that they shoot the test shots using AWB rather than calibrating to a specific gray scale card. On the other hand, it implies the AWB is not very good compared to the other cameras I compared it to. I have now downloaded the high res JPG files and adjusted them in LR 5.2 and the WB was way off. Once adjusted the colors look much better and the high ISO files are very workable once processed in LR so it may not be as bad as it seemed on first blush. Just don't expect OOC JPGs to look very good. They need sharpening WB adjustment and a little NR if the ISO is up.
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
10 Aug 2013 8:04PM

Quote:Lack of audio/mic input Sad I wish there's an option for this...


Buy a GH3 for that.
joshwa e2
4 710 United Kingdom
10 Aug 2013 9:57PM

Quote:Lack of audio/mic input Sad I wish there's an option for this...

Buy a GH3 for that.



Or the Panasonic Lumix G6. Smile
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
10 Aug 2013 11:07PM

Quote:or a Panasonic G6


Yes, forgot that. We are getting spoilt!
TW e2
1
11 Aug 2013 10:10PM
Thanks for your review of, perhaps, the most elegant Panny innovations since the L1 - which I picked up recently for $400 for its great handling including shutter and aperture dials and Elmarit "kit lens".

Did I see a few gaps in the review (that I trust could be filled by yourselves or other, upcoming reviews)?

1. Since the EM5 and the P5 brought us 5-axis in-body stabilisation, many folks have wanted this on their next camera body. When the GX7 was announced with IBIS, but the announcement was catty on details, folks seem to have interpreted this as lacking 5-axis IBIS.

Did I miss your confirmation of 5-axis vs fewer axes in the IBIS? Or will we have to wait for another review to learn this?

2. Also - more detail on dynamic range of the sensor (if not actual sensor response curves) would help. 43 and m43 have tended to trail in this matter, though recent developments have been upbeat (and somewhat assisted with improving, if not optimally focused, capabilities to deliver HDR). I look forward to info on this from the reviewers who cover such stuff in detail.

Panny has made some nice strides with this camera. ...Now perhaps for 5-axis IBIS, hybrid finder, DNG instead of RW2, and better control of exposure bracketing for HDR. ...Oh, yes - and global availability of the GX7's all-black version.
joshwa e2
4 710 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2013 9:11AM
Hi TW,

It's definitely not 5-axis IS, as they would be promoting it as such, if it was 5-axis. In the presentation, they said that the optical image stabilisation in lens performs better than the in-body IS. It's also not active during video recording, so it is not as effective or useful as the 5-axis IS in Olympus cameras, however it is fairly effective.

We will be publishing more on the GX7 shortly.

Cheers,

Josh
joshwa e2
4 710 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2013 9:27AM
We've updated the ISO test images using manual White Balance. Cheers, Josh
12 Aug 2013 10:36AM
I compared G5 high iso shots with GX7's. Gx7 is way better...

Than I wondered: Why G5 shots were with f9, -33 compensation, and gx7 shots with f7.1, 0 compensation? The shutter speed is the same.... maybe Gx7 is cheating with high iso, and it isn't the real iso?
ThatOne 5 1
14 Aug 2013 5:03PM
I actually got my paws on one of these, but only for a few seconds before it was snatched away... Shame, because it actually feels like a camera, just as my OM-D does. And there's the problem: not enough significant difference for even my ridiculous man-mathematics to make a case for selling the Olympus to buy this little Panasonic.

One very important point is the in-body, as opposed to in-lens, stability feature. That enables this GX7 to make the best of the Olympus Pen/OM-D lenses.
ajdh e2
6 2 United Kingdom
14 Aug 2013 7:25PM
I also got my grubby mits on one today. They had a Leica 25mm F1.4 Summilux lens attached which looked superb. I was allowed to put my own memory card in the camera so I could check out the images on my computer. The colours were good, the auto focus very fast and I took one shot at ISO 25600 which was acceptable and on a par with cameras costing a lot more. Unfortunately I can't check out the RAW images as Adobe haven't updated Camera Raw to include the GX7.
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
14 Aug 2013 7:28PM

Quote: Unfortunately I can't check out the RAW images as Adobe haven't updated Camera Raw to include the GX7.


Aren't they .RW2 as Panasonic raw has been for along time now?
ajdh e2
6 2 United Kingdom
14 Aug 2013 7:32PM
I have a GX1 and I can read those files but PS would not read the files from the GX7.
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
14 Aug 2013 7:41PM

Quote:I have a GX1 and I can read those files but PS would not read the files from the GX7.


I just downloaded one of the ePZ RW2 files and tried to import it into Lightroom 5. No go, says not supported.

No problem with my GH3 RW2 files, though. Interesting.
ajdh e2
6 2 United Kingdom
14 Aug 2013 7:54PM

Quote:I have a GX1 and I can read those files but PS would not read the files from the GX7.

I just downloaded one of the ePZ RW2 files and tried to import it into Lightroom 5. No go, says not supported.

No problem with my GH3 RW2 files, though. Interesting.



It's the same with Nikon RAW files. Even though they are all NEF files, when I went from a D300 to D3 and then D3s, I had to update Camera Raw so that the files could be read.
15 Aug 2013 5:05PM
Lovely review.

The HDR: are the exposures combined in-camera?
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
15 Aug 2013 5:15PM

Quote:The HDR: are the exposures combined in-camera?


They are in the GH3 and work very well if you like that sort of thing. JPG only, though.
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
15 Aug 2013 5:42PM
JPG only in the GX7 too according to the articles.

Dave, every time manufacturers release a new camera, the RAW files are routinely incompatible with existing software - Adobe doubtless love it because their RAW updates generally only work with the latest version of PShop/Lightroom.

The great thing about using a Mac is that RAW is supported at Finder level, so updates will work with any version of Aperture or iPhoto. You still however have to wait on Apple providing the patch.

Amazing amount of buzz this camera has generated - I can't remember this much for a long time. Maybe Panasonic are onto something here....
15 Aug 2013 5:42PM
Thanks.

I don't like "cake box" HDR pictures. But for helping the camera overcome a too-high contrast range, it's wonderful.

Oh, see some pics which were really lifted by HDR:

http://eolake.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/dusk-in-lancashire.html

Comparison:

http://eolake.blogspot.co.uk/2013/03/hdr-magic.html
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
15 Aug 2013 7:45PM

Quote:The great thing about using a Mac is that RAW is supported at Finder level, so updates will work with any version of Aperture or iPhoto. You still however have to wait on Apple providing the patch.
Amazing amount of buzz this camera has generated - I can't remember this much for a long time. Maybe Panasonic are onto something here....



Yes, I can open the GX7 files in Windows right now in Directory Opus. Just not in Lightroom! The reason apparently is not technical, the RW2 files are the same as any other RW2 file...BUT...the camera name isn't in the Adobe list yet, so it doesn't know what it is. Windows is reading the RW2 file direct from its header information, so the camera name doesn't matter.

Big buzz, yes. For me, this is the first vaguely pocketable camera that has an EVF.
15 Aug 2013 10:38PM
And a good one too. high-rez and tiltable!

BTW, RAW files have imbedded JPGs, I'll bet that is what the OS reads. They are pretty good quality too, quite usable. (So really there's no reason for using "RAW plus JPG", you just need an app to separate them.)
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
15 Aug 2013 10:54PM
No, I'm reading the RAW file. The explorer I use, Directory Opus will convert to jpg if I wish, but dng too. the dng file from that is importable into Lightroom.

Like I say, the RW2 files are the same as any Pansonic one, it's just that they are not identified in Lightroom yet as being the same as GX1, GH3 etc.

Not having a GX7 yet, all this is highly useless, of course Smile
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
16 Aug 2013 11:25AM
Actually Dave, I doubt the RAW files are identical - particularly from the GX7 as it's a brand new sensor. Each RAW file will contain data not only about such things as the sensor, but also adjustments that may have been automatically made to things like chromatic aberration, lens geometry and so on [it's not true that most RAW files are completely unprocessed]. So if you can open a RW2 file without the specific reader, it's either just the JPEG header you're opening [which won't even be the least compressed version] or it's one that's stripped of additional data that's specific to the camera/lens combo in question - either way, not ideal.
I would like to work with RAW files, but since I am a student, I do not have much free time to do so.
Therefore, I need to have a camera with good out of camera JPEGs. Has anybody made a comparison between E-M5 and GX7 out of camera JPEGs?

THX
16 Aug 2013 12:19PM

Quote:And a good one too. high-rez and tiltable!

BTW, RAW files have imbedded JPGs, I'll bet that is what the OS reads. They are pretty good quality too, quite usable. (So really there's no reason for using "RAW plus JPG", you just need an app to separate them.)



Raw isn't a container with embedded jpeg, it contains only the raw readout from the sensor. (g5 raw files are ~ 15 mb, and the same file in jpeg is ~8-9mb, you would have 6-7 mb for the raw data, so it is immpossible and illogical). If you select raw + jpeg in camera settings, it actually saves twice the file, in jpeg and in the raw...
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
16 Aug 2013 12:31PM

Quote:
Raw isn't a container with embedded jpeg, it contains only the raw readout from the sensor. (g5 raw files are ~ 15 mb, and the same file in jpeg is ~8-9mb, you would have 6-7 mb for the raw data, so it is immpossible and illogical). If you select raw + jpeg in camera settings, it actually saves twice the file, in jpeg and in the raw...



No you're wrong I'm afraid - there's always at least a jpeg header in raw files which is often used for previews. I'm not certain if that's full size every time, possibly not, but it is there. What you have to consider though is that there is some overlap in what information RAW and JPEG contain [obviously - it's the same image!], so you wouldn't necessarily have to double-up completely.

Mano: I'm not certain of the quality of the GX7's JPEG output [how could I be?], but historically Olympus JPEG processing has been amongst the best regarded. I know with Panasonic Gs I've had in the past AWB has been miles off and I've been thankful of the opportunity RAW affords to right that quite simply without any degradation of the file's quality. If you're going to rely on JPEG only Olympus is probably the safer bet and I say that as someone who generally prefers Panasonic because of their [to me] superior ergonomics - which includes both the controls and the interface.
Thank you for quick response,

Is that true that JPEG quality of these new mirrorless cameras even beat that of DSLRs (APS-C cameras)? With the price I have to pay for E-M5 or GX7, I can afford a D5200 or even D7100. Many reviews I have read so far attest to this but, for me, it is still hard to believe.
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
16 Aug 2013 3:03PM
Both Nikon and Canon appear to output JPEGs that are a little soft and they can often benefit quite a lot from the RAW files taken and sharpened a bit, so I suppose it's possible [although because the D7100 is 24mp and doesn't have an AA filter, I'd doubt it]. At higher ISOs I'd still expect less noise and more detail from the top CaNikons. I was surprised however in DPReview's comparisons that doesn't appear to be the case with the Sony NEX cameras, which appear to lose ground on the m43 pair at higher ISOs. Quite strange that.

Ultimately, especially in good light and at small up to all but the largest repro sizes, there isn't going to be a huge amount in it.

But ultimate IQ isn't the point of M4/3 - it's system size. You may be be making [a very small] compromise in IQ in some circumstances by going for 4/3 format, but you gain [or rather lose!] a ton in the weight and bulk you need to carry around. Let's face it, if you're happy to stick with out-of-camera JPEGs you aren't exactly chasing the ultimate in quality anyway! [That isn't meant as a criticism, it's just a fact of life...]
DPReview's comparison is exactly what made me confused. They claim that they used Nikon 50mm F1.4 on D7100. This lens is supposed to be sharp at least at the center. But if you look at the Queen and compare it to what is produced by E-M5, the difference leaps out at you.
You are completely right. I know when I want to stick to JPEGs, quality is compromised. I just want to make sure that I am not being fooled by some dishonest reviews. I am not saying that DPReviews are dishonest because I never had APS-C cameras, but with larger sensor size, higher resolution, removal of AA filter taken into account, it is really hard to believe my eyes. It is why I want to hear personal experience of people who actually used these cameras.
I know that the small size of mirrorless cameras is their selling point, but I, myself, am not really concerned about size and weight.
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
17 Aug 2013 11:05PM
It seems to depend on what bit of the image you're looking at - I think if you view some of the portions of the image which have fairly small lettering, it is slightly more legible in the APSc shots (D7100, 60D, K5II), but it is actually less than I would have expected. It may be that the Nikon shots will sharpen up a bit, but the difference isn't great. Certainly not big enough to encourage me to carry on with APSc as backup/travel to full frame as a principal shooter - if you're carrying around the latter with a few lenses/ second body/flash guns, it really does add up to back-break.
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
18 Aug 2013 2:53PM

Quote:or it's one that's stripped of additional data that's specific to the camera/lens combo in question


The exif read from the RW2 GX7 file in Dopus says GX7 (twice)and the full complement of exif is there with a full size file in pixels and Mb. At 200% it shows no signs of compression of any kind so if it is the preview jpg it will be fabulous quality looking at the 'proper' file. I tried altering the 'GX7' in exif to GX1 - but LR still didn't read it Smile

helltormentor, what possible future could a magazine have in writing dishonest reviews? You cannot make an assumption of your own (that with 'larger sensor, higher resolution' etc APS-C will have better IQ) and then, when assumption is confounded, think that it may be a dishonest review. That lacks all logic. I have worked in media all my life and never, ever knew an advertiser try to influence an article.
Lemmy, as I said, I cannot judge the review because I never owned APS-C cameras, but if you put all facts together, you might agree with me that, at least, it is a little unusual. Nikon uses Sony sensor as Olympus do. D7100 has larger sensor and higher resolution compared to E-M5 without AA filter.
Still, it cannot touch the level of details and sharpness produced by E-M5 even at the center let alone corners. Just compare the Queen card and see yourself. in a nutshell, since I do not have possibility to compare photos from E-M5 to those from D5100 or GX7 myself, I have to make sure that I can rely on what I read.
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
18 Aug 2013 11:22PM

Quote:since I do not have possibility to compare photos from E-M5 to those from D5100 or GX7 myself, I have to make sure that I can rely on what I read.


I think you torture yourself unnecessarily. All of the cameras you quote will produce image quality far exceeding what any normal individual requires.

Judge the cameras on menus, ergonomics, price.....

Five minutes with a a camera in your hand will tell you more than hours of reading and viewing reviews will ever do.

Judging a camera by its image quality solely is like judging a car by its top speed only. It is one of the least important aspects of using a camera. Which camera makes you want to take pictures, feels right in your hands? Which one feels like it was made for you?

When I picked up a GH3 Panasonic, it felt like I had picked up a camera designed with me in mind. If the IQ had been worse - or better - than an Olympus OM-D it would have meant nothing to me.

A camera you love to use means you want use it all the time, take it everywhere. That is what produces pictures, not a few percentage marks on a technical chart.
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
19 Aug 2013 11:23AM

Quote:or it's one that's stripped of additional data that's specific to the camera/lens combo in question

The exif read from the RW2 GX7 file in Dopus says GX7 (twice)and the full complement of exif is there with a full size file in pixels and Mb. At 200% it shows no signs of compression of any kind so if it is the preview jpg it will be fabulous quality looking at the 'proper' file. I tried altering the 'GX7' in exif to GX1 - but LR still didn't read it Smile

helltormentor, what possible future could a magazine have in writing dishonest reviews? You cannot make an assumption of your own (that with 'larger sensor, higher resolution' etc APS-C will have better IQ) and then, when assumption is confounded, think that it may be a dishonest review. That lacks all logic. I have worked in media all my life and never, ever knew an advertiser try to influence an article.



Hmm - I can't even see the RAW files in preview [which doesn't surprise me] it just tells me that the output comes from a camera not yet supported. I don't think there will be a full size 'uncompressed' JPEG [all JPEGs are compressed to some degree, but I know what you mean] in there. So you are somehow reading the RAW data in a format Directory Opus can read.

Clearly, there are differences in the files other than the name of the camera in EXIF [otherwise your changing that name would allow LR to open it]. But EXIF data is standard in form anyway and it isn't necessarily reflective of all the info that's in the RAW file. I still suspect there is some camera-specific data in there - like how lens distortion and CA are handled, possibly also how curves are processed [which seems particularly pertinent to the GX7] and NR etc. Could it be that there is a basic structure to Panasonic's RW2 format that Dopus is reading that lacks camera-specific processing? I don't know.

What seems logical to me is if all the data were common across that format I can't see it's in the best interests of camera makers to purposefully obfuscate the output from new cameras. If anything, it's a disincentive to buy a new camera knowing you will at best have to wait for the format to be supported or at worst have to purchase an upgrade to your software of choice to access the RAW files. I'd doubt many people who shoot in RAW actually choose to use the camera's bundled RAW processor because they tend to be slow, limited and usually not very capable in cataloging.
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
19 Aug 2013 12:27PM

Quote:I'd doubt many people who shoot in RAW actually choose to use the camera's bundled RAW processor because they tend to be slow, limited and usually not very capable in cataloging.


Absolutely. I had a Pentax which shot DNG files natively. I really would like that to become a standard because the DNG can be fed all the metadata it needs to display properly and it would then be immediately usable without contstant updating of graphics software. I convert all my pix to DNG, anyway.

I hear people saying that the maker's native format gives the best quality but I cannot see how RAW data from a sensor can be made better or worse other than by processing it, which can be accomplished using any file standard.

Just as mobile phone makers are slowly seeing common sense and going to micro-USB connectors for their products, so I hope camera makers will gravitate to DNG.
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
19 Aug 2013 3:52PM
AFAIK Dave, even though it's ostensibly a 'universal' format, DNG is still effectively controlled by Adobe. This is an extract from Wiki:


Quote:The process of DNG conversion involves extracting raw image data from the source file and assembling it according to the DNG specification into the required TIFF format. This optionally involves compressing it. Metadata as defined in the DNG specification is also put into that TIFF assembly. Some of this metadata is based on the characteristics of the camera, and especially of its sensor. Other metadata may be image-dependent or camera-setting dependent. So a DNG converter must have knowledge of the camera model concerned, and be able to process the source raw image file including key metadata. Optionally a JPEG preview is obtained and added. Finally, all of this is written as a DNG file.

DNG conversion typically leaves the original raw image file intact. For safety, many photographers retain the original raw image file on one medium while using the DNG file on another, enabling them to recover from a range of hardware, software, and human, failures and errors. For example, it has been reported in user forums that some versions of the Adobe DNG Converter don't preserve all the raw data from raw images from some camera models.



Which sort of bears out what I was saying about additional camera specific data being included in RAW files. It also suggests whatever DNG convertor you use, it still needs to have the [new] camera data in order to effectively translate everything in the RAW file.

I can't see that gets us any further in accessing RAW files from new cameras without updates. I'm also a little suspicious of anything that puts further control of a format you'd use for archiving with a company like Adobe - given the direction of travel they've been going in for the past few years. As you can tell I'm pretty unconvinced about any advantage of such a format.
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
19 Aug 2013 4:20PM

Quote:As you can tell I'm pretty unconvinced about any advantage of such a format.


It would need to be an open standard like M43. I wouldn't care what it was but given my past experience with camera makers, I have no confidence that old formats from them will always be readable properly either.

My work isn't so important to me these days (ie, doesn't make me so much money Wink ), so I'm happy to convert to dng and store it that way. All my stuff that matters is with my agents, so safe there.

If my present work was important to me, I would keep it in both formats, dng (or whatever open format available) and native, storage cost being a non-issue these days.

Nevertheless, whole tranches of different formats presenting binary information in different ways doesn't seem like much sense to me. But, as the joke goes, the good thing about standards are that there are so many to choose from.

Why I am interested in opening a file from a camera I don't yet have, I don't know. It's a boy thing, I suppose!
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
19 Aug 2013 4:53PM
I suppose it's the same with any data format - music, video, photography, whatever. We tend to think we have the stuff in perpetuity and then the technology dies/becomes obsolete and then we can't access it any more.

The narrower the standard and the more particular the technology is, the worse it is. So truly open formats are a very good thing. Apple may not allow you to pass on your iTunes library to your beneficiaries, but so long as the .mp3/4 files are locally stored and free of DRM [which thankfully seems a thing of the past], they are at least freely transferable to use on anything that will play the files [which should last a few years as a standard I suppose].

I have some photos on a few Jazz discs [the bigger brother to Iomega's Zip drives]. The original drive I had died on me and worse still, it was a SCSI interface, so I've now no way of accessing them [it was meant as an archival storage at what seemed like a whopping 1Gb of data, so even before rewritable CDS were at all common]. I can't bring myself to throw them away even though I know I'll probably never get at them.

Now that's very definitely a boy thing!
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
19 Aug 2013 5:52PM

Quote:So truly open formats are a very good thing.


As you mention, mp3 is likely to go on, not because it is the best necessarily but it has become the standard and even if something radically better came along, with digital formats it should be possible to convert from the old to the new format (though no way of accurately restoring the jettisoned sound information). Interesting that jpeg carries on whereas the newer (and, I am told, better) jpeg 2000 is hardly used. The devil you know, i suppose.

Relating back, the reason Nikon became the standard for press photographers and remained so for so long was not to do with the wonderful Nikon quality equipment as their ads would have people believe but because they were the first with a tough and versatile 35mm system. When everyone had bought into it, you could always sell an unwanted lens, spare camera body or accessories by going to the pub the Express guys uses, say and asking around or borrow lenses from mates. That's when the herd thing really works!

On the boy thing, going against my instincts, I sold an old Leica and Nikon F body I had left over in a cupboard ten years ago. I should have done the boy thing. I'd love to have them in the cupboard again, used or unused, just to know they are there and 'might come in hand one day'.
idl e2
3 Norway
22 Aug 2013 4:21PM
I find the GX7 very interesting and from the review I find it even more so, but....This camera is the one I've been looking for and I anticipated its arrival, knew it had to come. I sold however all my FF heavy stuff, went to G3-GH2 - G5, the latter I still have. G3 I gave away, GH2 I traded in among others for a Fuji X-E1 and I liked the latter so much that I bought one more. Point is, Had the GX7 arrived earlier I probably would not have bought the Fuji X-E1. I have no regrets though, 'cause they are small, lightweight, depending what you put on them and quite amazingly, I can shoot in Jpegs with no problems at all contrary to what I had to do before. So everyone's need do vary and frankly, most of the time it is a matter of taste as long as one's quality is met. But the main target from the producers of cameras I suppose is; " that what you shoot should be good enough to print straight out of the camera With little or NeXT to nothing to do post mortem", pardon the expression. Does the GX7 do that, well if it does this sucker's going to probably require that one too. Looking pretty Equal to the X-E1 though. Back in the film days we mostly wanted as big as possible a format good enough for enlargements to hang on the walls and we seldom, ( at least from where I come from ), went Down to smaller formats as for example Pentax introduced. I still think though that Panasonic probably has made an ikonic camera here which shall appeal to almost everyone who are mature ( read old enough ) to remember the heydays of true photographic journalism.
ajdh e2
6 2 United Kingdom
19 Sep 2013 1:39PM
Just had confirmation that the cameras are now in stock. Roll on delivery tomorrow. Smile
Some help please.

Based on the assumption I will buy a GX7, any recommendations for lenses to buy?

Assume I have a total budget between 500 and 800 for lenses, majority photos can fall into two types.

1) Hillwalking photos - top of the mountain panoramas, nature rambles, snow scenes etc etc

2) Portraits full face, nothing too tricky.

Any suggestions gratefully received
ajdh e2
6 2 United Kingdom
3 Oct 2013 6:11PM
I'm seriously considering an Olympus M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 Lens. There's a review at the link.

http://www.ephotozine.com/article/olympus-m-zuiko-12-40mm-f-2-8-pro-lens-preview-22865
lemmy e2
7 2.0k United Kingdom
3 Oct 2013 6:29PM

Quote:Based on the assumption I will buy a GX7, any recommendations for lenses to buy?


The new Panasonic 14-140mm super zoom is a great performer, light in weigh and compact in size and has excellent IS built in - better than the GX7s in body stabilisation.

The Olympus 45mm f1.8 would fill the portrait requirement wonderfully well and the pair of lenses would come in within your budget.
Thanks very much for the advice.

Much appreciated!!

A
ChrisV e2
8 889 26 United Kingdom
18 Oct 2013 2:48PM

Quote:Based on the assumption I will buy a GX7, any recommendations for lenses to buy?

The new Panasonic 14-140mm super zoom is a great performer, light in weigh and compact in size and has excellent IS built in - better than the GX7s in body stabilisation.

The Olympus 45mm f1.8 would fill the portrait requirement wonderfully well and the pair of lenses would come in within your budget.



I'd concur with that - I bought a G6/14-140 kit for holiday and was absolutely blown away by the performance of the lens. Easily the best superzoom I've ever owned [I don't know how much distortion/CA is cleaned up in software, but who cares?] and a tiny lens considering its range. Will probably be the most used lens I own for quite a while.
22 Nov 2013 1:38PM
Hi
Have been looking for a few weeks for a new camera, and am now boggled, I am very much an amateur, but looking to replace my compact Panasonic and the GX7 although expensive seems to have very good reviews etc and at the moment can't find anything I like better. My query is which package lens I should go for, my thoughts are with the 14-42 but would appreciate any comments. It will basically be for family photos, maybe views now and again.

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