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Panasonic Lumix GX7 Review
By Steve Rhys 28.08.2013
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Panasonic Lumix GX7 Review

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Best Price £1599

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  • No articulated screen
  • Slow tracking AF system
  • Slow viewfinder refresh rate

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Panasonic Lumix GX7 Review

Panasonic has added a new flagship compact system camera to its G-series and the Lumix GX7 has plenty to give.

 

Overview

Panasonic launched the Lumix GX7 as direct competition to the likes of the Fujifilm X-E1 and Sony NCX-7 and has packed the advanced compact system camera (CSC) with killer features that will attract enthusiasts more than it will tempt mainstream photographers like the Lumix GF6. 

It´s tough competition in this category of CSC´s, but Panasonic has tagged the Lumix GX7 as their premium snapper and the Japanese company even goes as far to claim it is the best DSLR they have produced to date. There is little to argue that the GX7 is not a great camera, but how does it stack up against its rivals?

 

 

Panasonic Lumix GX7 

  

Product Description

The Panasonic Lumix GX7 is the company´s first upgrade in this range and feels every bit the top-end camera it is meant to be. The eye-catching design comes complete with the usual proliferation of case-mounted controls to compliment the four programmable modes accessed through the LCD touch-screen.

The combination of these controls makes the GX7 a very refined camera to shoot with.

 

Panasonic Lumix GX7

built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF) which offers a 2.76million-dot resolution and a 0.7 magnification

 

Modifications include a dedicated AF/AE lock button combined with an AF/MF switch together with built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF) which offers a 2.76million-dot resolution and a 0.7 magnification.

 

These are some of the best specs on the market and the image quality is notably improved from that of the Lumix GX1.

 

READ REVIEW: Panasonic Lumix GX1 Review->  

 

The EVF can be tilted to a 90 degree angle to give you different viewing angles from high and low positions and according to Panasonic the sensor is not a million miles off that of the Adobe RGB colour space, thus colour reproduction stays true to the on-screen image.

Panasonic Lumix GX7

 

 

 

Panasonic Lumix GX7

Panasonic has used MFT lenses designed by Olympus and Sigma in the latest-generation snapper

 

Panasonic has used MFT lenses designed by Olympus and Sigma in the latest-generation snapper, the first time this type of lens has been used on the G-series. As a result the camera sports an in-built sensor-shift stabilization system that is capable of delivering sharp images even on moving objects.

 

READ REVIEW: Sony NEX-3N Review ->

 

It´s not almost the most important feature on a camera, but the Lumix GX7 comes with wi-fi and NFC connectivity which allows users to download their shots to social media accounts or Android and iOS devices straight from the camera. This is likely a feature that is more likely to take off in several years time, but it is a nice touch to know that manufacturers are already thinking to include the feature as standard.

In earlier Lumix models, some criticism was angled at Panasonic for the relatively poor performance of their auto-focus (AF) system, but has spent some time rectify the problems – and Lumix GX7 users will reap the benefits of the upgrade. The 5-point AF now tracks focus speeds at 0.06 seconds and gives you a picture-in-picture option that magnifies the view area from x3 to x10 whilst still enabling you to size up the entire scene. It´s just a pity the AF doesn´t reset more quickly once you have got your shot off.

Panasonic Lumix GX7

Venue Engine image processor delivers an improved ISO performance which can shoot up to 4.3fps in continuous AF mode

 

Powering the GX7 is Panasonic´s redesigned Venue Engine image processor which delivers an improved ISO performance and can shoot up to 4.3fps in continuous AF mode. Twinned with the new micro four thirds sensor, the processor delivers a fast, powerful performance and produces quality results even in low light conditions.

 

Panasonic Lumix GX7

Panasonic has retained the Clear Retouch feature and Time Lapse Shooting modes that proved popular with the Lumix GF6

 

n terms of software, Panasonic offers it usual collection of Creative Controls which can be used when shooting in JPEG or RAW files. In amongst these modes are three Monochrome options; Silky Monochromes which softens images, Rough Monochrome which produces a grainy, industrial effect and Monochrome which allows you to filter red, yellow, green, brown colours together with a blue-yellow axis, to manipulate contrast.

 

If this nifty feature interests you then you will probably also be intrigued by another new function which allows users to adjust image contrast before you rip the shot off. To do this, you can either drag your finger in a curve across the touch-screen or use the physical controls to input a preset curve.

More good news is that Panasonic has retained the Clear Retouch feature and Time Lapse Shooting modes that proved popular with the Lumix GF6 together with the fun-time Stop Animation modes which allows you to create short movies by selecting a sequence of stills.

Having said that, Panasonic has also upgraded the video capability to produce better focus and sharper images so if you like home videos you have the option to make your own motion pictures. You should note there is no external mic port though which restricts filming distances otherwise the sound quality suffers.

The overall performance of the Lumix GX7 however, is very impressive. The speed and accuracy of the new ´pin-point´ AF system is perhaps the stand-out feature, but special mention should also be given to the highly responsive LCD screen which produces outstanding clarity. The screen requires only the slightest of touches to operate and can even be used to activate the shutter which gives you more flexibility to get a shot off quickly.

The only drawback to such a sensitive touchscreen is that it is easy to activate accidently so don´t be surprised when you unwittingly change your settings between shots without even noticing. Small niggle, but one that could emerge as a big annoyance. Fans of the manual viewfinder however, will find they do not have this problem as the touchscreen automatically detects when you are sizing up a manual shot and turns of the screen when close to your hand or face.

 

Who is it for?

Considering the price and the treasure trove of manual features, Panasonic are aiming the Lumix GX7 squarely in the frame of advanced amateurs and professional photographers looking for a compact camera that has the versatility to produce a range of images and change lenses. More specifically, the speedy autofocus will appeal to wildlife enthusiasts and photographers of moving subjects such as sport and infant children.

 

Value for money?

For a compact system camera, £819 for just the body is a lot to pay. Once you start adding lenses the cost can soon mount up and you find yourself with a CSC that has cost you as much as a top-end DSLR – albeit a damn good CSC. Having said that, if you can get by with the 14-42, that comes as standard the Lumix GX7 looks like decent value for money. There are few CSC on the current market that can achieve this level of performance for that price. If it´s any consolation, the standard lens does do a good job and lends itself well to manual shooting.

 

Final thought

You can´t really ask for more from the Lumix GX-7. Bursting with features, the classy looking snapper is a pleasure to use, delivers excellent image quality and is easy enough to carry around with you. As far a compact system cameras go, this Panasonic premium line is the complete package.

Key to the success of the GX-7 is the new “light Speed” autofocus system which is among the fastest AF systems on the market. Combined with a sturdy processor, micro four-thirds sensor and an ISO range of 200-25600 the GX-7 is capable of handling the vast majority of lighting situations, moving objects and RAW files. Images generally have plenty of detail with vibrant colours and excellent exposure.

The only other CSC that we know of that can match the capabilities of the Panasonic Lumix GX-7 is the Olympus E-P5 – the only difference being that the Lumix has a manual viewfinder. The GX-7 also has a better layout and is easier to use, although the Olympus does out-perform the Panasonic in key areas such as processing and less noise when shooting in RAW. The problem is the Olympus is much more expensive.

The Panasonic GX-7 most definitely ticks the right boxes and is likely to feature in several lists naming the top ten cameras of 2013 – and by our reckoning it will feature somewhere near the top! This snapper looks and feels like a premium gadget and although it does have a somewhat steep price tag to match the Panasonic GX-7 is arguably worth shelling out for.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Review

Panasonic has added a new flagship compact system camera to its G-series and the Lumix GX7 has plenty to give.

 

Overview

Panasonic launched the Lumix GX7 as direct competition to the likes of the Fujifilm X-E1 and Sony NCX-7 and has packed the advanced compact system camera (CSC) with killer features that will attract enthusiasts more than it will tempt mainstream photographers like the Lumix GF6. 

It´s tough competition in this category of CSC´s, but Panasonic has tagged the Lumix GX7 as their premium snapper and the Japanese company even goes as far to claim it is the best DSLR they have produced to date. There is little to argue that the GX7 is not a great camera, but how does it stack up against its rivals?

 

 

Panasonic Lumix GX7 

  

Product Description

The Panasonic Lumix GX7 is the company´s first upgrade in this range and feels every bit the top-end camera it is meant to be. The eye-catching design comes complete with the usual proliferation of case-mounted controls to compliment the four programmable modes accessed through the LCD touch-screen.

The combination of these controls makes the GX7 a very refined camera to shoot with.

 

Panasonic Lumix GX7

built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF) which offers a 2.76million-dot resolution and a 0.7 magnification

 

Modifications include a dedicated AF/AE lock button combined with an AF/MF switch together with built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF) which offers a 2.76million-dot resolution and a 0.7 magnification.

 

These are some of the best specs on the market and the image quality is notably improved from that of the Lumix GX1.

 

READ REVIEW: Panasonic Lumix GX1 Review->  

 

The EVF can be tilted to a 90 degree angle to give you different viewing angles from high and low positions and according to Panasonic the sensor is not a million miles off that of the Adobe RGB colour space, thus colour reproduction stays true to the on-screen image.

Panasonic Lumix GX7

 

 

 

Panasonic Lumix GX7

Panasonic has used MFT lenses designed by Olympus and Sigma in the latest-generation snapper

 

Panasonic has used MFT lenses designed by Olympus and Sigma in the latest-generation snapper, the first time this type of lens has been used on the G-series. As a result the camera sports an in-built sensor-shift stabilization system that is capable of delivering sharp images even on moving objects.

 

READ REVIEW: Sony NEX-3N Review ->

 

It´s not almost the most important feature on a camera, but the Lumix GX7 comes with wi-fi and NFC connectivity which allows users to download their shots to social media accounts or Android and iOS devices straight from the camera. This is likely a feature that is more likely to take off in several years time, but it is a nice touch to know that manufacturers are already thinking to include the feature as standard.

In earlier Lumix models, some criticism was angled at Panasonic for the relatively poor performance of their auto-focus (AF) system, but has spent some time rectify the problems – and Lumix GX7 users will reap the benefits of the upgrade. The 5-point AF now tracks focus speeds at 0.06 seconds and gives you a picture-in-picture option that magnifies the view area from x3 to x10 whilst still enabling you to size up the entire scene. It´s just a pity the AF doesn´t reset more quickly once you have got your shot off.

Panasonic Lumix GX7

Venue Engine image processor delivers an improved ISO performance which can shoot up to 4.3fps in continuous AF mode

 

Powering the GX7 is Panasonic´s redesigned Venue Engine image processor which delivers an improved ISO performance and can shoot up to 4.3fps in continuous AF mode. Twinned with the new micro four thirds sensor, the processor delivers a fast, powerful performance and produces quality results even in low light conditions.

 

Panasonic Lumix GX7

Panasonic has retained the Clear Retouch feature and Time Lapse Shooting modes that proved popular with the Lumix GF6

 

n terms of software, Panasonic offers it usual collection of Creative Controls which can be used when shooting in JPEG or RAW files. In amongst these modes are three Monochrome options; Silky Monochromes which softens images, Rough Monochrome which produces a grainy, industrial effect and Monochrome which allows you to filter red, yellow, green, brown colours together with a blue-yellow axis, to manipulate contrast.

 

If this nifty feature interests you then you will probably also be intrigued by another new function which allows users to adjust image contrast before you rip the shot off. To do this, you can either drag your finger in a curve across the touch-screen or use the physical controls to input a preset curve.

More good news is that Panasonic has retained the Clear Retouch feature and Time Lapse Shooting modes that proved popular with the Lumix GF6 together with the fun-time Stop Animation modes which allows you to create short movies by selecting a sequence of stills.

Having said that, Panasonic has also upgraded the video capability to produce better focus and sharper images so if you like home videos you have the option to make your own motion pictures. You should note there is no external mic port though which restricts filming distances otherwise the sound quality suffers.

The overall performance of the Lumix GX7 however, is very impressive. The speed and accuracy of the new ´pin-point´ AF system is perhaps the stand-out feature, but special mention should also be given to the highly responsive LCD screen which produces outstanding clarity. The screen requires only the slightest of touches to operate and can even be used to activate the shutter which gives you more flexibility to get a shot off quickly.

The only drawback to such a sensitive touchscreen is that it is easy to activate accidently so don´t be surprised when you unwittingly change your settings between shots without even noticing. Small niggle, but one that could emerge as a big annoyance. Fans of the manual viewfinder however, will find they do not have this problem as the touchscreen automatically detects when you are sizing up a manual shot and turns of the screen when close to your hand or face.

 

Who is it for?

Considering the price and the treasure trove of manual features, Panasonic are aiming the Lumix GX7 squarely in the frame of advanced amateurs and professional photographers looking for a compact camera that has the versatility to produce a range of images and change lenses. More specifically, the speedy autofocus will appeal to wildlife enthusiasts and photographers of moving subjects such as sport and infant children.

 

Value for money?

For a compact system camera, £819 for just the body is a lot to pay. Once you start adding lenses the cost can soon mount up and you find yourself with a CSC that has cost you as much as a top-end DSLR – albeit a damn good CSC. Having said that, if you can get by with the 14-42, that comes as standard the Lumix GX7 looks like decent value for money. There are few CSC on the current market that can achieve this level of performance for that price. If it´s any consolation, the standard lens does do a good job and lends itself well to manual shooting.

 

Final thought

You can´t really ask for more from the Lumix GX-7. Bursting with features, the classy looking snapper is a pleasure to use, delivers excellent image quality and is easy enough to carry around with you. As far a compact system cameras go, this Panasonic premium line is the complete package.

Key to the success of the GX-7 is the new “light Speed” autofocus system which is among the fastest AF systems on the market. Combined with a sturdy processor, micro four-thirds sensor and an ISO range of 200-25600 the GX-7 is capable of handling the vast majority of lighting situations, moving objects and RAW files. Images generally have plenty of detail with vibrant colours and excellent exposure.

The only other CSC that we know of that can match the capabilities of the Panasonic Lumix GX-7 is the Olympus E-P5 – the only difference being that the Lumix has a manual viewfinder. The GX-7 also has a better layout and is easier to use, although the Olympus does out-perform the Panasonic in key areas such as processing and less noise when shooting in RAW. The problem is the Olympus is much more expensive.

The Panasonic GX-7 most definitely ticks the right boxes and is likely to feature in several lists naming the top ten cameras of 2013 – and by our reckoning it will feature somewhere near the top! This snapper looks and feels like a premium gadget and although it does have a somewhat steep price tag to match the Panasonic GX-7 is arguably worth shelling out for.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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