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Lumix GX7 & 8 - Panasonic's high end rangefinder style

Discussion in 'photography, graphics & art' started by FridgeMagnet, Sep 25, 2013.

  1. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    Nothing about this here for some reason, but I really like the look of the GX7. (Well, not specifically the look, though it's nice enough.)

    http://www.photographyblog.com/reviews/panasonic_lumix_dmc_gx7_review/ plus lots of other reviews if you google for GX7.

    I get a lot of use out of my old chunky no nonsense GF2 but it has flaws - e.g. dynamic range not so amazing, high ISO not brilliant (bearable at 1600 but not great and 3200 is pretty horrid) and no viewfinder (plus you can't turn off the touchscreen! Which means I have loads of pictures of random shit.) And it's quite noisy.

    The GX7 though has a much better sensor - OM-D level - plus an EVF which is supposed to be great. It has a stealth mode rather than the annoying "clack" of the GF2. It has IBIS which works on any lens, including old manual ones, plus focus peaking so you could actually use them properly. Articulated screen, eh, not so fussed about that but it's occasionally handy. Dead fast AF in low light.

    Not cheap at £800-odd body only but it looks like a camera that would last a long time. It's getting to the point where bodies are good enough that I am prepared to spend money on the basis of using one for many years, and the m43 lens market is good and will carry on for a while. I like the rangefinder style a lot and seem to get the most use out of it with digital.
     
  2. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    It's a great camera but you could get the OMD for that and that's the camera I'd prefer for its handling and ruggedness.
     
  3. dweller

    dweller muthafuckin snakes

    Yeah GX7 does look good, but someone who had one said it is the kind of camera you'd look after carefully and not want to scratch rather than one that certain people allow to be bashed up and proudly display battle scars.
    On the other hand the EM-5 has had several reports of the dials coming off and the eyesocket coming loose so
    I'm not entirely convinced of its build quality.

    I have neither camera, so not really qualified to judge.
    Though given the choice I'd probably go for the EM5 as I've had only Panasonics til now and want
    to see if the grass is greener.
     
  4. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    The e-m5 is about the same price now, but it does lack focus peaking and has an EVF with half the resolution. The GX7 is not waterproof but I have to say that I've never really cared about that in practice, and my lenses aren't waterproof anyway. IQ is very similar between them - the GX7 has a lower min ISO and is apparently slightly better at extremely high ISO but neither of those really matter IMO. (Similarly I don't care about video performance.)

    It does also have wifi for remote control and picture transfer, which is potentially useful. And some other stuff. It's a year and a half newer after all (eternity in camera years).

    I am going to try to find an actual camera shop with one to have a go. I did have a go with the E-M5 though not extensively. I do generally prefer cameras built like the GX7 tbh, not that they're vastly different.
     
  5. dweller

    dweller muthafuckin snakes

    The other thing the GX7 has got is the 1/8000 second shutter.
    I do hit the 1/4000 limit when I'm using fast primes in daylight and aiming for shallow DOF.
    Don't want to be fishing around for ND filters.
    That is another plus for the newer models coming out.
     
  6. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    It going down to 125 rather than 200 would also be significant there.
     
  7. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Interesting comparison here:
     
  8. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    Price has gone down by $100 already in us/canada apparently, though I see no reduction here as yet.
     
  9. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    If I was buying a camera now, I'd wait to see what's happening price-wise with the new Olympus model.
     
  10. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    I don't think the price for the E-M1 is going to come down, that doesn't seem to be the way Olympus do things. The E-M1 is in a different class to the GX7 though, it's more of a full-use m43 everything DSLR-equivalent rather than a pocketable quality camera. (The GH series are Panasonic's entries into the former market and tbh I've never really been attracted by them.)

    The way it strikes me at the moment, Olympus have the edge when it comes to larger m43 cameras, but Panasonic are doing better with rangefinder-style compacts - the E-PL series strike me as overpriced for what they do. I think the GX7 is intended to really cement this. The EVF is a _big_ deal - E-PLs with EVFs are huge and stupid-looking and even more expensive.
     
  11. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    I was just in a shop on Tottenham court road having a play with one and the EVF is really frickin good. In fact, given that I'd just been playing with a Sony A99 in the sony centre next door, I thought the GX7's EVF was better - I waved it around all over the place and it didn't stutter or lag once, whereas the A99 did, noticeably. (Admittedly the a99's finder is also full of all sorts of useless crap which may be slowing it down.) The rear screen is lovely too.
     
    dweller likes this.
  12. dweller

    dweller muthafuckin snakes

    Panasonic is also just about to announce a viewfinder free very small m43rds camera the GM1.
    It will be around the size of a Sony RX100 and will be supplied with a tiny zoom lens 12-32mm.
    Rumors say it will be announced on Oct 17th.
    Interesting that they are experimenting with different body sizes and shapes at the moment.
     
  13. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    I'd be surprised if they could get something meaningfully smaller than, say, the GF5, which is tiny - the lens mount actually bulges out above the camera body. In fact they've made the GF6 larger which goes against the grain of that series.

    The thing is that the pocketability of any m43 camera is very much limited by the actual lens. The smallest they have is the 14/2.5, which is a terrific lens and really pretty small, but does still bulge out. No matter how small the body, if it has a lens like that attached you still need a large pocket to put it in (big jacket or coat) so why bother reducing the size?

    Of course you could always use something like the Olympus f8 lens-cap-lens :D which is a lot of fun and means you can put the thing in your trousers, but not exactly all-purpose.
     
  14. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Pretty sure that's not going to be physically possible.
     
    dweller likes this.
  15. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    It does seem that they have done it - rather surprisingly it also has the same sensor and autofocus as the GX7, which is very good performance for something that size.

    http://www.pocket-lint.com/news/124445-hands-on-panasonic-lumix-gm1-review

    It's still the lens that's the bulk issue though. You still need a handbag or a jacket/coat pocket for that.
     
  16. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    That's what prompted me to get the GR. A tiny body is a fat lot of good if the lens means it still won't fit in your pocket.
     
    dweller likes this.
  17. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    I couldn't countenance spending that on the new GR, but I spotted a GRD-III for cheap today in a shop and got that, and it seems pretty terrific and also trouser sized.
     
    dweller likes this.
  18. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Have to say I'm using the GR an awful lot these days, and its small size means that I'm taking a decent camera with me more and more these days.
     
  19. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    DPreview have given it a silver award.
    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/panasonic-lumix-dmc-gx7/14
     
  20. dweller

    dweller muthafuckin snakes

    Had a quick feel of one in Jessops.
    Although you can't get your hand on the grip properly as they have those security tags.
    Viewfinder seemed very small. I like the way it flips up though.
    Quite a light body, doesn't feel as sturdy as I imagined.
    I'm sure it will be a very nice little camera for some.
    The range of panasonic m43 cameras on display was so huge. I felt it must be hard for the sales staff to pitch them.
    GF6 G6 GH3 GX7 and GM1
     
  21. dfm

    dfm help I'm alive

    What did all the LX3 users jump to?
     
  22. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    The LX7?

    This isn't an L-series, it's a G-series. Panasonic's naming procedures are pretty obscure though.
     
  23. dfm

    dfm help I'm alive

    Makes sense :)

    (misread thread title)
     
  24. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    The best deal I've seen on this so far seems to be on digitalrev, who are selling it with the 20/1.7 prim v2 for £719. This is only £20 more than body only and means I could sell my old 20/1.7 lens. Pretty tempted tbh.
     
  25. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

  26. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    It's a brilliant technological achievement, but I think I prefer more physical controls to be available - and, ideally, an EVF.
     
  27. Virtual Blue

    Virtual Blue ready

    I just purchased this on a real good deal...
    Can't wait.
     
  28. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    You can get the GX7 plus lens for under £500 right now, given that the GX8 is coming out. Mind you, the GX8 does look pretty amazing.
     
  29. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    I think I'm going to get a GX8. There are some very good deals on s/h GX7s right now, but there seem to be so many improvements over the 7 in the 8 that even paying more than twice the price sounds reasonable. The EVF is better (EVF quality is key for me), the screen is fully articulated, it's weather-sealed (okay admittedly my lenses aren't), it has more manual controls which I like, it has all the "4K photography" modes, it has in-body stabilisation which can work at the same time as lens stabilisation, it takes the same batteries as my G5 so I already have a spare, there are a few deals on for trade-ins... plus I got a backdated pay rise which I promised I wouldn't spunk on a camera but clearly am going to.

    Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 Review | PhotographyBLOG

    The main complaint seems to be that it's quite chunky. Oh the horror. For me, the only thing it doesn't have for some reason is an onboard flash. I don't use flash a lot but it's nice to have the option. I can probably live with that.
     
  30. Virtual Blue

    Virtual Blue ready

    If you can afford it and able to live without a flash, the GX8 is the better choice.

    I've had the GX7 for nearly 2 months and it's been quite versatile, good all rounder. Takes very decent pictures but the lack of stabilisation in video mode is a huge let down. And the EVF/ LCD button and sensors are a joke. It's a massive improvement from my previous GF2 (and the original G1 before that). At £400 with additional lenses - 12-32/ 20mm prime, it was and still is a great deal.
     

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