Andy Westlake examines the Panasonic Lumix GX80 mid-range compact system camera

Product Overview

Overall rating:

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX80

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

Pros:

  • + Highly effective in-body image stabilisation
  • + Compact, portable, rangefinder-style design
  • + Quiet, discreet shutter
  • + Useful 4K Photo modes

Cons:

  • - Default control set-up feels dated
  • - Viewfinder isn’t the best
  • - No mic socket for video

Product:

Panasonic Lumix GX80 review

Manufacturer:

Price as reviewed:

£599.00 (with 12-32mm lens)
TAGS:

Build and handling

One control dial surrounds the shutter button, with another placed beneath your left thumb

One control dial surrounds the shutter button, with another placed beneath your left thumb

In-hand the Panasonic Lumix GX80 feels very nicely made, and quite heavy for its size. It has a relatively small handgrip, but it’s just enough to wrap your fingers around, with a well-defined space to place your thumb. Where the tiny GM5 was too small to be comfortably useable, and the GX8 feels a bit large and bulky, the GX80 hits a near-perfect middle ground.

The control layout isn’t necessarily the best you’ll find, but it’s logical enough and works reasonably well out of the box.

It’s based around twin control dials to change exposure settings, front and rear; by default both do the same thing in all exposure modes except manual, but either can be configured to set exposure compensation directly instead.

The rear dial can also be clicked-in to change its function; during shooting this brings up a comprehensive exposure compensation and bracketing interface. Meanwhile the d-pad on the back gives access to focus area selection, ISO, white balance and drive mode.

Panasonic's onscreen Q menu gives quick access to many camera settings

Panasonic’s onscreen Q menu gives quick access to many camera settings

You can also use the touchscreen to reposition the AF area directly, even when using the EVF, and if you’re one of the two-thirds of the population that’s right eye dominant, this should work fine.

However, if you’re a left-eye shooter like me, you’ll probably find the touchscreen unusable for this, as your nose will constantly reset the focus area. But because the camera is highly customisable, it’s possible to re-assign the d-pad to move the AF area directly if you prefer, and rework the rest of the interface to operate as you’d prefer.

Indeed, many of the controls are user-configurable, including four external Fn buttons, five touchscreen Fn buttons, and the onscreen Q Menu. Panasonic’s menus are relatively well organised and logical too, so it’s not too difficult to find your way around the camera and set it up how you want. I set the Fn1 button that by default accesses 4K Post Focus to control ISO and white balance instead.

  1. 1. Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX80 review
  2. 2. Features
  3. 3. Build and handling
  4. 4. Viewfinder and screen
  5. 5. Autofocus
  6. 6. In body IS / Dual IS
  7. 7. Performance
  8. 8. Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX80: test results
  9. 9. Test results
  10. 10. Panasonic GX80: Our Verdict
  11. 11. Page 11
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