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Panasonic Lumix GX80 GX85 Review

Panasonic Lumix GX80 GX85 Review - We review the brand new Panasonic Lumix GX80, the latest Panasonic Micro Four Thirds camera has 5-axis Image Stabilisation, 4K video and improved image quality.

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Category : Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
Product : Panasonic Lumix GX80
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Panasonic Lumix GX80 Silver (2)

The Panasonic Lumix GX80 is a new mirrorless interchangeable lens camera with a 16 megapixel Micro Four Thirds sensor, 5-axis in-camera sensor based image stabilisation, 4K video recording, and a sensor without the optical low pass filter, for improved resolution, contrast and colour reproduction. The GX80 will be available for £509 body only. 

Panasonic Lumix GX80 Features

Panasonic Lumix GX80 Silver (1)

The Panasonic Lumix GX80 features the same 16 megapixel Micro Four Thirds sensor as the GX7 (which has now been discontinued), but without the optical low-pass filter, for improved detail and resolution, which also means that noise performance should also be improved. The camera has 5-axis sensor based image stabilisation, which is designed to work in combination with lens-based image stabilisation. The Panasonic Lumix GX80 is also known as the GX85 in some parts of the world, or alternatively as the GX7 Mark II in Asia.

Panasonic Lumix GX80 Features at a glance

  • 16-megapixel sensor w/o Low Pass Filter
  • 5-axis sensor-based image stabilisation
  • 4K Photo / Video with IS
  • Post Focus

The Panasonic Lumix GX80 has a newly developed shutter unit, that is both smaller, as well as quieter, and has been designed to dramatically reduce shutter vibration (or shock), with a 90% reduction in shutter shock. The camera can shoot at 1/4,000s using the mechanical shutter, or 1/16,000s using an electronic shutter.

Panasonic Lumix Gx80 Shutter Unit
Panasonic Lumix GX80 Shutter Unit

The camera has a Panasonic Venus Engine image processor designed to get the best out of the GX80 sensor. The sensor is the same as that used in the GX7, but with the low-pass filter removed resolution is improved, as well as colour reproduction. To avoid false colour (moire) which can occur when the low-pass filter has been removed, the camera has built-in moire suppression, so that there is both the benefit of improved resolution, as well as reduced false colour.

Panasonic Lumix Gx80 Image Stabilisation
Panasonic Lumix GX80 Image Stabilisation

The GX80 features Dual IS (Image Stabilisation): Lens image stabilisation (2-axis) and camera image stabilisation (5-axis sensor based) works simultaneously for improved image stabilisation. This works for photos, video, 4K video, as well as 4K photo, and this is the first camera to give 5-axis image stabilisation whilst recording 4K video. The use of dual image stabilisation is said to be particularly beneficial when using longer telephoto lenses.

Compared to the Panasonic Lumix GX8, GX7, and Olympus PEN-F:

Panasonic GX8 Panasonic GX80 Panasonic GX7 Olympus PEN-F
20mp 16mp 16mp 20mp
0.77x EVF 0.7x EVF 0.7x EVF 0.615x EVF
3inch vari-angle 3inch tilting 3inch tilting 3inch vari-angle
4-axis (sensor IS) 5-axis (sensor IS) 2-axis (sensor IS) 5-axis (sensor IS)
ISO100-25600 ISO100-25600 ISO125-12800 ISO80-25600
8fps (6 with AFC) 8fps (6 with AFC) 5.3fps (4.3 with AFC) 10-11fps
340 shots 290 shots 350 shots 330 shots
487g 426g 402g 427g
4K video 4K video FullHD FullHD
No flash Flash (GN6) Flash (GN7) No flash 
Weather sealed - - -
£649 body only £509 body only £389 with lens £999 body only


The GX80 features an electronic viewfinder (EVF) with 2764K dot resolution, 100% colour reproduction, a 16:9 aspect ratio and 0.7x magnification, and an eye detection sensor. The EVF doesn't tilt, like it does on the GX8 and GX7, and the design of the camera makes the camera look a lot like a mini GX8.

There are full manual controls, as well as intelligent Auto, and you can use the creative effects in P/A/S/M modes. There is a new L Monochrome mode - added to Photo Styles, to give impressive, deep black photos with rich gradation like black and white film. A Light composition mode lets you take low light shots of subjects including fireworks, and light painting, etc, and combines a number of shots to produce one image. 

Wi-Fi connectivity is built in, with a QR-Code for a quick connection to your smartphone or tablet. The Panasonic Image App has a number of options, including remote control, image transfer, geotagging, snap movie, photo collage, and more. 

The GX80 records 4K (UHD: 3840x2160) video at 30, 25, and 24fps, with stereo sound, as well as full HD video at 50p, 50i, 25p, and 24p. Focus can be set with the touch screen, and there are a number of different focus options including: Face/Eye Detection AF, Pinpoint AF, One-shot AF and advanced Low Light AF (-4EV).

Panasonic Lumix GX80 Silver (4)

Key Features

  • 16 megapixel Micro Four Thirds sensor, without Low Pass Filter
  • 5-axis image stabilisation (sensor based)
  • 3inch tilting touch-screen, 1040K dots
  • Electronic viewfinder, 2764K dots, 0.7x  magnification
  • 4K Photo (30fps), Post-focus 
  • 4K Video (UHD: 3840x2160), 30, 25, 24p, Stereo sound
  • ISO200 - ISO25600, Extends to ISO100
  • Wi-Fi connectivity with QR-Code
  • 8fps continuous shooting, 6fps with C-AF
  • Panoramic shooting / HDR mode / Creative Effects
  • RAW image development in-camera
  • Silent Mode, Multiple Exposure
  • Time Lapse Shot / Stop Motion Animation
  • Built-in pop-up flash (GN6)
  • Available in Black, Silver, Tan

Panasonic Lumix GX80 Handling

Panasonic Lumix GX80 Silver (7)

The GX80 has a solid plastic body that feels very well built, and the tilting screen is firmly attached giving reassuring confidence in the design. Despite the plastic body, the camera feels extremely solid. There is a textured grip with a leather-like look, but unfortunately, this isn't a rubber grip, like the one found on the GX7

There is a front and rear control wheel, so that you can quickly change aperture and shutter speeds, or other settings, and there are numerous function buttons that can be customised. The Q.Menu button can be used to quickly change settings, without having to go into the menu system. You can also customise five function buttons on screen so that you can setup the camera to give you quick access to your favourite settings. 

The electronic viewfinder has a good resolution, and the 16:9 aspect ratio is great for video recording, but less impressive for 4:3 aspect ratio photo shooting, making the electronic viewfinder appear smaller than when using other (4:3 or 3:2) aspect ratio viewfinders. The colours are quite strongly saturated, but this can be adjusted.

The screen quality is good with a clear display and good viewing angles, and you can view the screen even in bright sunlight. The electronic viewfinder and screen colours match although as mentioned above the viewfinder can appear quite highly saturated. The tilting screen fits very neatly into the camera when in its closed position, and it almost looks like the screen doesn't tilt at first glance. You can use the touch-screen to set the focus point to anywhere on the screen, however care needs to be taken when using the EVF, as your nose can accidentally set the focus point - luckily this can be switched off. Focus is said to work down to -4EV, with the focus assist lamp helping here.

The tripod socket is quite close to the front of the camera, however, unlike the PEN-F, this does not cause any problems when mounting larger lenses on the camera. The shutter is quieter and much more pleasant sounding than the GX7 shutter when a lens is mounted to the camera. 

Panasonic Lumix GX80 Silver (8)

Menus – The Panasonic Lumix GX80 menus are clearly and well laid out, with the menus separated over different colour coded sections. There is built-in help that explains each option, which makes it easier to use the camera, without having to refer to the manual. You can watch a video of the menu options available on the ePHOTOzine YouTube channel. The Q.Menu button gives quick access to some of the most common settings, and you can use the touch-screen to change settings and options as well as scroll through the menus. In playback you can use pinch to zoom, or scroll through different photos, making it easy to use the camera, particularly if you're used to using a smartphone.

Built-in Wi-Fi allows you to remote control the camera, and you can take photos as well as start and stop video recording. You can transfer images to a smartphone or tablet, or add geotagging information to photos. There are options for Snap Movie as well as Photo Collage. Setting up the connection is easy, as you can simply connect to the camera's Wi-Fi or use the QR code so that the connection is setup for you. 

Battery life - Battery life is rated at 290 shots according to Panasonic / CIPA test results, which is lower than other Panasonic Micro Four Thirds cameras, although we suspect it is due to the new in-camera sensor based image stabilisation. Thankfully, you can charge the battery using the MicroUSB connection, which will make it easy to charge the camera where-ever you are. The GX80 uses the same battery as the GX7.

Panasonic Lumix GX80 Black (3)



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Comments


If only they had made the EVF 4:3 and retained the GX7/8's AF/MF switch, I would have been tempted to upgrade all three of my GX7s to this. The addition of DfD and Dual IS, elimination of shutter shock, and removal of the AA filter are all compelling. Removal of EVF tilt I can live with and accept as a cost-cutting measure. However, any upgrade from my GX7s will HAVE to have a bigger 4:3 EVF. Guess I'll just have to wait for GX8 prices to drop...

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lemmy 9 2.7k United Kingdom
5 Apr 2016 11:51AM
The one thing everyone wants to know is how does the sensor stabilization compare with Olympus's? That's the single biggest change in Panasonic's camera line up since 4K and arguably more important than that to most photographers.
ChrisV Plus
10 1.6k 26 United Kingdom
5 Apr 2016 12:05PM
Looks like a great camera. Already owning a GX8, there isn't that much on offer to tempt me into getting yet another MFT body [perhaps thankfully]. If it were the tiny dimensions of the GMs and perhaps weather-sealed I might be thinking about it [gulp]. It is good - and slightly surprising - they've managed to add in 5 axis IS and that it works with 4k shooting. Oh, and they've addressed shutter shock issues.

All this bodes well for the future and makes my mouth water at the prospect of what might go into a GH5...
joshwa Plus
6 811 United Kingdom
5 Apr 2016 1:11PM
Hi Lemmy, we've added in some image stabilisation (details on the performance page). Compared to the Olympus OM-D E-M5 I'd say it's on a par as to the lower shutter speeds possible, but that the GX80 has a higher success rate. I don't have an E-M5 II at hand to compare it to.
dannyr 7 46 United Kingdom
5 Apr 2016 1:56PM
"GX85 in some parts of the world, or alternatively as the GX7 Mark II in Asia."

Why?

Apart from that looks a great little camera, Loved my GX7, and this does seem like a nice updated version. in fact GX7 Mk2 does seem the most appropriate.

So what does the shutter sound like? Hated the GX7 shutter sound with a passion, but love the GM1's almost silent shutter, if it's in between the two ill be happy.
lemmy 9 2.7k United Kingdom
5 Apr 2016 4:17PM

Quote:Compared to the Olympus OM-D E-M5 I'd say it's on a par as to the lower shutter speeds possible, but that the GX80 has a higher success rate.
Thanks Josh. That essentially does away with Panasonic's disadvantage over Olympus in stills work.
dcash29 11 2.2k England
5 Apr 2016 5:17PM

Quote:Compared to the Olympus OM-D E-M5 I'd say it's on a par as to the lower shutter speeds possible, but that the GX80 has a higher success rate. I don't have an E-M5 II at hand to compare it to.


Hopefully the EM5mk2 vs GX80 colour checker card is nothing to go by then?
joshwa Plus
6 811 United Kingdom
5 Apr 2016 6:32PM

Quote:So what does the shutter sound like? Hated the GX7 shutter sound with a passion, but love the GM1's almost silent shutter, if it's in between the two ill be happy.







From left to right: E-M5, GX80, GX7 shutter sound - although note the table does amplify the sound.
lemmy 9 2.7k United Kingdom
5 Apr 2016 7:06PM
If I was a war photographer I'd be loath to use the GX7. A quick sequence on that and you'd be certain to get a burst from an AK47 in return.
Niknut Plus
7 1.5k 72 United Kingdom
5 Apr 2016 8:09PM
A corking little camera.......but the image quality doesn't quite match that from the GX8 ??.(compare the studio shots enlarged !), which also
has better control layout & a chunkier grip !.......at least it isn't so expensive as the GX8 ?.

If they ever remove the AA filter from the GX8, it'll knock the spots off everything else !!.....except the Olympus OMD M1 maybe ??.WinkGrin
6 Apr 2016 7:47AM
Just as I am contemplating a new lens, this comes along 😟 I like the EVF resolution and the size but its a shame they didn't stick with the GX8 sensor.... onwards and sideways !

Quote:If I was a war photographer I'd be loath to use the GX7. A quick sequence on that and you'd be certain to get a burst from an AK47 in return.


Gosh, I wonder how DSLR PJs have survived all these years? The GX7 shutter sound is nothing next to my 1D3. If it's too much for ya, there's always e-shutter.
6 Apr 2016 11:31AM
Would be good to have some info. about the focus bracketing feature, ie. compared to Olympus EM10 mrk II?

I feel a 3:2 aspect ratio for the EVF would be a better compromise for 16:9 video/4:3 stills.

David.
lemmy 9 2.7k United Kingdom
6 Apr 2016 12:53PM

Quote:Gosh, I wonder how DSLR PJs have survived all these years? The GX7 shutter sound is nothing next to my 1D3. If it's too much for ya, there's always e-shutter
I've actually covered wars so I was joking. My Nikons were, of course much noisier. And the GX7 has a silent shutter, as you say, which I use 95% of the time.

Some of Magnum's people are using GH4s in action these days.
Ah, I see. I guess my irony meter is broken. Glad you survived.
sanveer 1 1
6 Apr 2016 4:38PM
Does anyone know how good the video quality is? How FLAT can the video be pushed, for grading in post? Also, how decent is the on-board mic (since it doesn't have a mic socket)?
6 Apr 2016 7:47PM
I expect it is the same as the G7 except the moire maybe differen't, so to get flat as possible you would use Cine D, perhaps dial down contrast etc. I like Cine D but many complain about skin tones in particular but you can get LUT's to overcome these types of phemomena.
sanveer 1 1
6 Apr 2016 10:35PM
Montymouse, the GX85 doesn't have Cinelike D and Cinelike V. Also, I read in some reports that the colors right out of the camera are very vibrant. That is why I asked. The G7 has the Cinelike D and Cinelike V, and in most profile dialling down everything usually gives a pretty Flat Profile anyways.
Paul Morgan 15 18.7k 6 England
6 Apr 2016 11:01PM
The wb test images are still under exposed I see.
7 Apr 2016 5:38AM
Are you sure Sanveer, I haven't seen any mention of Cine D one way or the other, only of an enhanced Venus Engine and dynamic range. Wrt to your second comment, dialing down can be a double edged sword, it will not have the same affect as adjusting gamma, but will on vibrant image output in my experience.
sanveer 1 1
7 Apr 2016 9:26AM
Yes Montymouse, I read at a few forums, and I saw the same on B&H. But it is a Good Thing. Dialing down the setting to -3 to -5 and setting the profile to Natural is a better way of setting up for grading in post.

I agree, that dialing down in Cinelike V and Cinelike D can be an issue. Especially with Cineline D (and everything set to -5).
7 Apr 2016 3:56PM
I have heard Natural is better from some much viewed YouTube vid Sanveer but this is not my experience. I am in a G7 user group and one of the members has provided a LUT to support Cine D. I am surprised it's not available but perhaps it's aimed at the rich mans p&s segment of the market.
sanveer 1 1
7 Apr 2016 4:38PM
Oh ok, Montymouse. I wish Panasonic would incorporate the Cine D and V too. But, they are trying to protect their GX8 (metal body, weather sealing, tilting OVF, articulating screen, Cinelike D & V, 2.5mm mic jack, Highlight/Shadow adjustment etc) and G7 lineup (articulating screen, Cinelike D & V, 3.5mm mic jack, Highlight/Shadow adjustment etc).

See, since the GX 85 deals with the 2 biggest issues with Lumix Cameras, namely Shutter Shock and 5-Axis in-Body Stabilization, they have tried to disable other functions. From the few pics I saw on Flickr, I thought it handled detail as well as the 20MP GX8 (which has a 4-axis stabilisation, and no stabilization in 4k).

I think Panasonic should just Sell the extra Features (Including a 200mbps Vlog) for another $99-199 and make a killing, while they can.

I am guessing, the HDMI out has been Disabled as well, for the same reasons, mentioned.
7 Apr 2016 4:40PM
Thx for the review. Can you do a shutter sound test GX85 vs. EM5II (that's the quietest shutter among MILC until now). When testing, pls hold it up when press shutter.
The review says:-
>>You can use the touch-screen to set the focus point to anywhere on the screen, however care needs to be taken when using the EVF, as your nose can accidentally set the focus point - luckily this can be switched off.

This is a bit of a concern, and the stated solution is ambiguous, does it mean the touch screen must be switched off completely, or just that the touch screen can be set to switch off temporarily when using the EVF?

joshwa Plus
6 811 United Kingdom
8 Apr 2016 11:02AM

Quote:The review says:-
>>You can use the touch-screen to set the focus point to anywhere on the screen, however care needs to be taken when using the EVF, as your nose can accidentally set the focus point - luckily this can be switched off.

This is a bit of a concern, and the stated solution is ambiguous, does it mean the touch screen must be switched off completely, or just that the touch screen can be set to switch off temporarily when using the EVF?




Hi, you can solve this problem by either:

a) using your right eye with the EVF, so that your nose isn't on the screen, or
b) switching off the touch-AF pad feature

Option b means you can still use the touch-screen for everything else.
8 Apr 2016 11:07AM

Quote:
Quote:The review says:-
>>You can use the touch-screen to set the focus point to anywhere on the screen, however care needs to be taken when using the EVF, as your nose can accidentally set the focus point - luckily this can be switched off.

This is a bit of a concern, and the stated solution is ambiguous, does it mean the touch screen must be switched off completely, or just that the touch screen can be set to switch off temporarily when using the EVF?




Hi, you can solve this problem by either:

a) using your right eye with the EVF, so that your nose isn't on the screen, or
b) switching off the touch-AF pad feature

Option b means you can still use the touch-screen for everything else.



Ah yes thanks, I was forgetting that the viewfinder is offset and so your nose wouldn't normally touch it.
12 Apr 2016 11:00PM
Were you able to test whether the camera crops 4k video beyond the normal 2x m43 crop? If I recall correctly, the GX8 crops 24mm (FF equiv) to 37mm when shooting 4k video (or maybe I am thinking of a different camera than the GX8.)
13 Apr 2016 12:20PM
This doesn't bother me but the GX8 crops to 2.7 If I recall correctly.
13 Apr 2016 9:14PM
Thanks. That large crop factor pretty much kills wide-angle for 4k video, which was why I bought a G7 last year instead of the GX8. I hope the 4k video crop is less severe on the new GX80/85, but I haven't seen any of the early hands-on reviews comment on that yet.
15 Apr 2016 3:21AM
Nice review, as always.

Can you please tell me if the PRESS function is available on the rear dial, like older models?

Thanks and keep up your nice work.
joshwa Plus
6 811 United Kingdom
15 Apr 2016 1:59PM

Quote:The wb test images are still under exposed I see.


Hi Paul,

The WB test images were taken with +0.3 exposure compensation to counter-act what the camera is doing with it's exposure. Images were taken on aperture priority, with fixed ISO speed. The images appear under-exposed, and this is something that some Panasonic cameras tend to do more than other brands.

Thanks
Josh
joshwa Plus
6 811 United Kingdom
15 Apr 2016 2:00PM

Quote:Nice review, as always.

Can you please tell me if the PRESS function is available on the rear dial, like older models?

Thanks and keep up your nice work.



Yes you can, thanks Josh
26 Apr 2016 3:35AM
Hi,
nice review, thanks!

LUMIX GX80-Questions:
1) Why is the flash sync slower than in the GX7 (+/320; 1/250 with external flash) - any other explanation than marketing?
2) Does the internal flash allow triggering remote flash(s) like the GX7?
3) Why did they remove the focus selection switch around the the AF/AE lock button?
Even the tiny GM1 has that physical switch...
4) Finally: Does the GX80 allow AUTO-ISO in M mode?

Thanks for your reply!
bohemia 14 152 United Kingdom
21 Sep 2016 11:13AM
I bought one and quite like it but have noticed that there is shutter lag. I have used it with at 14-140mm to shoot horses. Single frame shots - normally I don't need to machine gun it. I press the shutter when I want the image captured - but the leg has always passed the point at which I wish it to be on the image. (This is not down to lack of knowledge and I can get it every time with the Olympus EM1 or a DSLR)
1 Dec 2016 12:29PM
I have owned the GX80 for about a month and used it intensively. I have taken a lot of macro shots with it using the Olympus M-Zuiko 60mm macro. The combination of lens and camera produces amazing shots. If you want compactness, light weight and great fuhnctionality this is for you.
Especially with macro you must use POST FOCUS - an amazing feature.
There are too many upsides to this camera to mention BUT I have one down side which is important. THE BATTERY LIFE IS RUBBISH If you are out for a day of intensive shooting you must have at least 2 spare batteries especially if you are doing video as well. You will probably use them both. AND you will have to buy a charger as well as Panasonic doesn't supply one but they are readily available as are the batteries.
I love this camera and my wife loves her Panasonic TZ 100 which uses the same batteries and shares most of the functions but it is a fixed mega zoom snapshot camera with a 1 inch sensor and also produces amazing shots in a much smaller body. I strongly recommend both cameras

Quote:The review says:-
>>You can use the touch-screen to set the focus point to anywhere on the screen, however care needs to be taken when using the EVF, as your nose can accidentally set the focus point - luckily this can be switched off.

This is a bit of a concern, and the stated solution is ambiguous, does it mean the touch screen must be switched off completely, or just that the touch screen can be set to switch off temporarily when using the EVF?



This mainly applies to left-eye shooters. Right-eye shooters have their noses positioned to the left of the camera.
You can set the touch screen to automatically swith between eye and screen or you can set it by the press of the evf button. It can be annoying when set to automatic as even your finger crossing the eye piece can cause the evf to switch when on auto. Also it is best to try using the EVF with your right eye anyway.
But use the EVF switch on manual and the problem is solved

Quote:You can set the touch screen to automatically swith between eye and screen or you can set it by the press of the evf button. It can be annoying when set to automatic as even your finger crossing the eye piece can cause the evf to switch when on auto. Also it is best to try using the EVF with your right eye anyway.
But use the EVF switch on manual and the problem is solved



This doesn't prevent the left-eye shooter's nose from moving the AF point while looking through the EVF.

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