It shares much with the new Lumix DMC-G2, but its pared-down spec means that Panasonic’s Lumix DMC-G10 could be the most attractive Micro System Camera for enthusiasts on a budget
Viewfinder, LCD, Live View and Video
Image: I shot this low-angle shot in 16:9 format. As I did not have a clear view of the composition on the LCD screen (the ground was too filthy to lie on), I had to crop the image to get the result I wanted
As it doesn’t have a reflex mirror, the G10 has an electronic viewfinder (EVF) rather than an optical one. With just 202,000 dots (equivalent), the G10’s EVF has a considerably lower resolution than the 1.44-million-dot (equivalent) devices of the G1 and G2.
However, this doesn’t make as much difference as the numbers might suggest. The view is slightly less detailed in the G10 EVF, but the image looks more natural with lower contrast and less edge sharpening.
Despite the lower resolution of the finder, focusing manually is easy using the 10x magnified display. I also found the G10’s EVF less prone to colour drag, which is the phenomenon that makes rainbow colours appear to trail behind features such as the grid lines as the camera is moved relative to the eye.
While the G10’s 3in, 460,000-dot LCD screen provides a good view when shooting indoors, I had to turn its brightness up to the highest available level when shooting outside to get a reasonable view.
When shooting from a low angle I really missed the articulated joint that allows the G2’s screen to be visible from above. Even though the screen has a wide viewing angle, the G10’s EVF projects out by around 1cm and obscures most of the scene.
Although it doesn’t offer Full HD (1920×1080-pixel) video recording like the Lumix DMC-GH1, the G10 can shoot 1280×720-pixel movies at 30fps, which is enough for most enthusiasts.