The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 may be the first Micro Four Thirds camera to sport a 20.3-million-pixel sensor, but it has a whole host of other updates too. Andy Westlake takes it for a spin

Product Overview

Overall rating:

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8

Features:
Build/Handling:
Metering:
Autofocus:
AWB Colour:
Dynamic Range:
LCD viewfinder:

Pros:

  • + Impressive feature set
  • + Effective in-body image stabilisation
  • + Excellent viewfinder and screen
  • + Great image quality in raw

Cons:

  • - Relatively bulky
  • - Connectors block articulated screen
  • - Uninspiring JPEG colour output
  • - Pedestrian styling

Product:

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 review

Manufacturer:

Price as reviewed:

£1,000.00 (body only)

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-G8 review: In-body/dual IS

GX8 Dual IS

The GX8’s Dual IS allows hand-holding at slow shutter speeds. This was shot at 0.5 sec with the 12-35mm f/2.8 lens

The GX8 is the second Panasonic camera to include in-body image stabilisation, after the GX7, but its system is rather more sophisticated. It can work in combination with the in-lens optical image stabilisation (OIS) found in many of Panasonic’s lenses to give an increased overall effect, although most lenses will need a firmware update for this to work, and three of the oldest won’t be compatible at all. It also corrects on four axes rather than two, which means that it should give better results for close-up shooting. However, it doesn’t offer any rotational correction around the lens axis, which tends to be important for long exposures.

In-body IS means that GX8 owners gain stabilisation with all Micro Four Thirds lenses from other makers, and with third-party lenses used via adapters (although as usual the focal length has to be entered manually). Most obviously, this makes Olympus’s non-stabilised lenses a more tempting prospect than they are on other Panasonic cameras. Unfortunately, though, the system doesn’t stabilise the viewfinder image to aid focusing and composition, which is particularly useful when shooting with telephotos. If you want this, you’ll still need to use a Panasonic lens with OIS.

GX8 IS sample 2

Here IS allowed me to hand-hold at 1/5sec to blur the water, with the lens set to 23mm

I found the in-body stabilisation to be pretty effective, allowing use of shutter speeds 2 or 3 stops slower than usual before blurring from camera shake becomes apparent. In side-by-side tests shooting at 12mm and 1/4sec, I found that dual IS with the Panasonic 12-35mm f/2.8 OIS lens gives slightly better results than the GX8’s in-body stabilisation with the Olympus 12-40mm f/2.8, giving 8/10 critically sharp shots compared to 6/10. However, both were less effective than the Olympus OM-D E-M5 II’s in-body stabilisation, which delivered 10/10 sharp images using the 12-40mm f/2.8. All this really means is that it’s wise to take a few more replicate shots with the GX8 when using slow shutter speeds.

  1. 1. Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 review - Introduction
  2. 2. Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 review: Features
  3. 3. Panasonic Lumix DMC GX8 review: Viewfinder and screen
  4. 4. Panasonic Lumix DMX-GX8 review: Build and handling
  5. 5. Panasonic Lumix DMC-G8 review: In-body/dual IS
  6. 6. Panasonic Lumix DMX-GX8 review: Performance
  7. 7. Panasonic Lumix DMC GX8 review: Image quality
  8. 8. Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 review: Verdict
  9. 9. Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX8 review: Specifications
Page 5 of 9 - Show Full List
  • RadiantFlowers

    Title needs updating, this is GX8, not G8
    “Panasonic Lumix DMC-G8 review: In-body/dual IS”

  • sam

    Some people for some reason get their kicks out of criticising everything they can’t afford. Such a bitter person hoping a company which is innovating more than most to bring us new features (and profit for themselves of course, they are ‘in business’) loses money on a product is just plain negative. If it’s not something he likes he should just turn the page and move on.

  • entoman

    Cameras just keep getting better and better don’t they!

    Every month one manufacturer or another adds a new innovation or a leap in quality, creating a really competitive market. We’re really spoilt for choice nowadays.

    It’s fantastic to have so many absolutely superb cameras to choose from, with a huge choice of models from Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus, Pentax, Fuijifilm and Panasonic.

    There quite literally is something that is perfect for everyone.

  • entoman

    I’m a DSLR man, but if I was in the market for a rangefinder-style, interchangeable lens, mirrorless camera, this is most definitely the one I would buy. The specification is excellent, the size is sensible, quality of construction faultless.

    Of course, the major advantage of the 4/3rd system (masses of high quality, lightweight, compact lenses to choose from), is outweighed to a large degree by the limitations of the small sensor (lowish pixel count, noise at high ISO). But, unless you are shooting for publication, it’s probably adequate – and future 4/3rd cameras will undoubtedly overcome many of the current sensor’s limitations. For amateurs it’s a good system to buy into, and can only get better.

  • poopchute

    You clearly haven’t been paying attention, if you think it is unremarkable. And I’m curious, how exactly are they trying to rip off the public?
    I too thought it was a little ugly at first, but it has grown on me. But that doesn’t really matter anyway, does it? It’s just personal opinion. For example, I think Soccer was created so the mentally challenged have something to entertain themselves with. But, that’s just my opinion.

  • Turbofrog

    Nothing remarkable about it except for one of the biggest viewfinders of any camera on the market (FF and MF DSLRs included), one of the most sophisticated image stabilization systems, one of the most sophisticated 4K video implementations, some of the best direct controls and touch-screen UX, full weather sealing, and image quality that competes strongly with other new camera models that cost the same? Nothing remarkable except for all those things?

  • Chris Hawley

    VERY ugly camera, and nothing remarkable about it. Impossible to justify charging £1000 for something this mundane. Hope they lose money on this, trying to rip off the public.