Micro Four-Thirds: Panasonic Lumix GX7 Announced
Today’s post by Mark Toal & Joe Farace
Last week Panasonic announced a new Micro Four-thirds camera that’s drawing a lot of attention. Since Mark works for Panasonic he doesn’t feel that he can write an unbiased opinion of this camera, “so I’ll leave that to Joe:”
The GX7 is a 16-megapixel Micro Four-thirds camera with a diecast magnesium chassis that echoes the iconic GX1’s overall design but incorporates a tiltable Live View Finder. An in-body Image Stabilizer (first in a Lumix) is “nearly as effective as the MEGA O.I.S. found in Panasonic’s lenses.” The GX7 offers Focus Peaking for precise focusing control. In Silent Mode, the camera switches the shutter from mechanical to electronic and turns all sound off. Top shutter speed is 1/8000th sec with a high speed mode of 5 fps and a maximum of 40 fps using the electronic shutter. AF Tracking enables consecutive shooting to capture moving subject in sharp focus at 4.3 fps.
Two dials—front and back— control aperture, shutter speed or exposure. The Venus Engine image processor features Multiprocess Noise Reduction and Detail Reproduction Filter Process, to enhance resolution and lets the GX7 achieves a maximum ISO of 25,600; it’s 200 on the low end. In addition to Creative Control mode that has 22 filter effects, the GX7 offers Creative Panorama, Time Lapse Shot, Stop Motion Animation or Clear Retouch modes.
If you’re into video—Joe is not—the GX7 capable of recording HD 1920 x 1080, 60p (60 Hz) / 50p (50 Hz) in AVCHD Progressive and MP4 in stereo but lacks a jack for an external mic, so it’ll probably mostly get used to shoot YouTube clips of Mr. Fluffy the cat playing the piano. The GX7 integrates Wi-Fi connectivity NFC (Near Field Communication) technology when working with Panasonic’s dedicated application software and their Image App for iOS/Android smartphones/tablets. Price for the silver body (no black body for the US) is expected to be $1000 or $1100 with the new, improved 14-42mm lens. Now back to Mark:
Leaving the specs aside Mark says they he has been looking forward to this camera for it’s styling and built-in viewfinder. Cameras like the GX7, Olympus Pen EP-5 along with the APS sensor-sized Fuji and Ricoh cameras have embraced a small, retro style that fits his style of photography. He’s tried the APS sensor cameras but likes Micro Four-thirds better because of their smaller lenses.
n the past Mark has written that he “always like to have a camera with me and these small rangefinder-style cameras fit that perfectly.” If you look back at the great street photographers you’ll see how they loved small rangefinder Leica cameras. For the past year or so Mark’s street cameras of choice have been the Lumix GX1 and Lumix LX7. No he’s looking forward to trying out the GX7.