The latest DSLR-styled model in Panasonic’s compact system camera range has an updated 16.05-million-pixel sensor and new Venus 7 HD II engine processor. Read the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 review to find out what we think

Product Overview

Overall rating:

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5

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

Product:

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 review

Manufacturer:

Price as reviewed:

£600.00
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Our verdict

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 remains a more DSLR-like experience to use than most current compact system camera models. The improvements to the sensor and processing engine enable an impressive performance and show that a smaller-format sensor can compete against APS-C models. The handling of noise is extremely impressive, allowing critical shooting up to ISO 3200 and the retention of high levels of detail even at ISO 12,800. Focusing remains an issue in low-light situations, though, and is something that may well lead to a hybrid contrast- and phase-detection solution in the future, like those now offered by Nikon and Canon.

Touchscreen controls have their benefits and in places really aid the G5’s operation. However, the menu needs work to accommodate both cursor and touch operation properly. If a viewfinder is essential to your shooting style, the G5 is the most affordable offering and its results do not disappoint. The plethora of available lenses is a benefit to this system, and there are some stunning primes available that really get the best from the G5.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 – Key features

Eye sensor
While not included on the previous model, the eye sensor has returned to the G5. It provides quick EVF selection and activates the AF functionality.

LCD bracket
Allowing the screen to be adjusted by 180° horizontally and 270° vertically, the LCD can be placed at almost any angle for easy viewing.

Autofocus control
The options for autofocus in the G5 are extensive. From the menu it is possible to set the camera to continuously focus without the shutter being pressed. The theory is that your subject will already be in focus before you even move to take the shot, therefore reducing focus time.

Lens choice
The micro four thirds system offers the largest lens range (without an adapter) among compact system cameras, with the ability to use lenses from Olympus and the new dedicated micro four thirds lenses from Sigma on top of Panasonic’s own collection and Leica-branded lenses.

Battery
The larger grip on the G5 provides more space for a battery unit and therefore the potential for greater power. This has resulted in an estimated 330 shots per charge compared to 270 in the G3, which is a welcome increase but perhaps not as great an improvement as expected.

Video
The video performance of the G5 makes it the most advanced in the range, delivering full 1080 capture at 50/60p. In the GH2 video was output at 50/60p, but recorded at 24p. The only downside for videographers is that the camera lacks a microphone input port.

Control dial
The thumbwheel provides the main function adjustment, but in contrast to the other buttons it has a rather ‘plastic’ feel to it.

Q menu
This provides access to the most used functions, but unlike the main menu it appears in small icons around the edge of the screen.

We continually check thousands of prices to show you the best deals. If you buy a product through our site we will earn a small commission from the retailer – a sort of automated referral fee – but our reviewers are always kept separate from this process. You can read more about how we make money in our Ethics Policy.

Details

Video:1080 50/60p HD, AVCHD, 1080 25p MP4
External mic:No
White Balance:Auto, 5 presets, 2 custom, manual
Built-in Flash:Yes
Dioptre Adjustment:-4 to +4 dioptre
Shutter Type:Focal-plane shutter
Memory Card:SD, SDHC, SDXC
Viewfinder Type:1.44-million-dot electronic finder
Output Size:4608x3456
LCD:3in, 921,000-dot touchscreen LCD
Field of View:100%
AF Points:23-point system (contrast-based)
White Balance Bracket:Yes (3 frames)
Power:Rechargeable BLC12E Li-Ion
Weight:396g
Exposure Modes:Program, aperture priority, shutter priority, manual, iA
Sensor:16.05-million-effective-pixel Live MOS
Max Flash Sync:1/160sec
File Format:JPEG, RW2 (raw)
Shutter Speeds:60-1/4000sec + bulb
DoF Preview:No
Colour Space:Adobe RGB, sRGB
Drive Mode:2fps, 3.7fps, 6fps (20fps reduced res)
Dimensions:120 x 71 x 83mm
Connectivity / Interface:USB 2.0, HDMI
Metering System:144-zone TTL, multi/spot/centreweighted
Compression:2-stage JPEG
Exposure Comp:±5EV
RRP:£599 (body only)
Lens Mount:Micro four thirds
ISO:160-12,800
Focusing Modes:Single, continuous, flexible, manual
Tested as:Entry-CSC
  1. 1. Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 at a glance:
  2. 2. Features
  3. 3. Touchscreen control
  4. 4. Build and handling
  5. 5. Metering
  6. 6. White balance and colour
  7. 7. LCD, live view and video
  8. 8. Noise, resolution and sensitivity
  9. 9. Dynamic range
  10. 10. Autofocus
  11. 11. The competition
  12. 12. Our verdict
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