Panasonic GM5 – Push the Boundaries

TEST: Pansonic GM5 pushes the boundaries. Can a system camera to be how small? Gm5 is camera as small as if it belonged to a new system while it is part of the large micro four thirds system.

About a year after the minimal GM1 presented has now Panasonic developed the concept of the model GM5.The four most obvious differences is that the camera a viewfinder, hotshoe, a thumbwheel and a thumb grip. Each of these things makes the camera significantly more useful.

The advantage of a viewfinder is worth repeating. With just one screen needs to be rather short-sighted to not be forced to keep the camera far from the body (which becomes unstable), and even be able to see it on the screen.

Reflections on the screen also avoids. However, it is not obvious that the viewfinder is better in bright sunlight. At least it is so with the GM5 then its screen has more power in their brightness than the viewfinder. Setting the screen brightness has three States while the viewfinder has only one.

Another difference is that the screen has aspect ratio 16:9 while the viewfinder has a 4:3 format. This means that the active image area is much smaller on the screen if you’re shooting with 4:3 format and vice versa to a 16:9 image becomes pitifully small in the viewfinder. At the same time, it is a pretty clever solution to get the most out of the least possible space. Assuming of course that you choose to use the viewfinder for 4:3 and 16:9 screen. The elongated shape suits namely nicely into at the back of the camera where the viewfinder takes up some space in height. As for the viewfinder so I would guess that it was easier to get the site with a more square shape than rectangular.

Large viewfinder

Panasonic LX100 has a 16:9 viewfinder and a 3:2-screen which I think feels that the best combination. It provided that the viewfinder is as big as it is in LX100. With the 16:9 format chosen becomes the viewfinder image so broad that the eye must walk over the image to watch the left or right side. Thus, I believe that the viewfinder in LX100 is as big as it can be without being too big.

The same is true, unfortunately, not the viewfinder in the GM5. It is too small. Its width is nearly identical to that of the viewfinder’s height in LX100. But the resolution is at least just as good as in LX100-just that sökarytan is 2.4 times less. The specified number of pixels for the viewfinder in the GM5 is 1 166 000 to 2 764 800 in LX100.

One aspect of this to use the viewfinder or the monitor can also be that the shooting feels more for real or serious when the viewfinder is used. As I see it – and I therefore think it is a pity that the camera insists on turning on the screen when I turn on the camera.

It even though I last camera was running had pressed a few times the disp button to switch off the screen. The eye sensor allows the switching between screen and viewfinder are problem-free, but I’d like to screen doesn’t dissolve at all when I turn the camera on.

To talk about the grip for a camera that is so small that it is hardly something to hold in may not be totally natural. Thumb grip still give good support and reduces the risk of losing the camera. In the package follows a standard camera strap.

I think the GM5 is so small that a enhandsrem is better. It is unjustifiable to have something so light and small, around the neck. I also experienced that the neck strap was unnecessarily difficult to quickly bring in a small compartment of my bag.

Should the camera be packed down as compact as possible means every time has a two-step process when you turn on and off. In addition to the on/off button will also have the lens rotated to the correct position. It goes of course to learn how to do this without thinking about it, but it is nevertheless an extra step.

The build quality of the camera body and the lens feels great. The gap in the zoom ring is almost non-existent and the stop at wide angle mode is enough to not accidentally rotate and fold up the lens.

However, there is a risk that the program selection slider on the top, change the mode but I asked for it. “this despite the fact that the resistance should be enough. Only solution to be sure to avoid this is either a lockable slider, or to the settings made via the button presses. On top, there is also a control for switching between single, continuous or manual focus. It does not entirely of 12-32-zoom cannot accommodate the focusing ring. At manual focus it will be to use buttons. Either virtual ones on the touch screen or right/buttons. On the screen there is also a button for one-time activation of the auto focus. It is a smart method compared to finding the right with the arrow keys. If you are using the viewfinder is of förklariga reasons not touchscreen features available, but it solves it by letting Fn1 button have the AF-ON function (one of 45 pieces that go to choose). It works, even if it means the thumb wedged in between the camera and the nose to reach Fn1-button.

In addition to 12-32-lens is a telephoto zoom lens with focal length 35-100 mm which is also extremely compact, in the same way as normalzoomen requires a rotation to be folded out, before it can be used.

These two lenses are specifically designed to fit on GM1 and the GM5.Camera housings are so thin that the bayonet stand out a little bit. Lens diameter and shape make them as a nice extension of the stand-out from the camera body. In form, it would stand out as well be part of the lens.The bayonet is visible in the form of a silver stripe.

Image quality

For a system camera, it is normally only the sensor, with its size and resolution, which controls the image quality. By that I mean that unless the lens performs well enough, it is possible to switch to a better one. For the GM5 is a bit more sensitive to 12-32-lens is good because the other lens becomes awkward on camera. Any concern that the lens should not be fit, you need not have-it is sharp. The weakness is the brightness. As an alternative, see the fixed lenses 15/14/1.7 and 2.5 (compact).

The sensor has the same resolution (16 megapixel) as in the other four thirds models on the market now and it performs well. Compared to the Panasonic’s two larger cameras GX7 and have a slightly weaker GH4 GM5 range if it brightens heavily underexposed areas. The high sensitivity is the GM5 as good.

The difference in scope down into the dark areas becomes even clearer with shutter speeds of 1/500 of a second. Then use the GM5 namely a lower accuracy in reading the image from the sensor (ten pieces instead of twelve). It is some kind of performance reason and fits together with the camera’s mechanical shutter does not pass shorter than 1/500-part short-times camera. using an electronic shutter. The two advantages of an electronic shutter is partly that it is completely silent, and that it can withstand shorter shutter speeds (1/16000-part of the GM5).

The downside is that the image not be exposed simultaneously at the top and bottom. This means that if, for example, photographing a fence from a car, then fence posts to tilt. There is also a risk that pictures in indoor lighting, intrusive horizontal lines that come to our lamps due to alternating current actually varies in brightness all the time. Fixed faster than the eye can perceive.

It is in the package with both normalzoomen 12-32/3,5-5,6 and telezoomen 35-100/4-5.6 that I think the camera is most interesting. Telezoomen are priced at just over four thousand dollars, but if you choose the package gets turned on 2500 dollars to get telezoomen. Prices are back to 10 500 SEK. Compared to many other similar packages, it is quite juicy.

It’s the weight and volume solely for Panasonic. Total weight is only a little over 400 grams. One can imagine the double, I recommend instead Sony A6000 with lenses 16-55/3.5-5.6 and 55-210/4.5-6.3.

Finesse with GM5 should be that it is part of a large system with lots of lenses to choose from. What I don’t get is that it is too small–with, among other things, hence a poor viewfinder-to truly be a camera to use with other lens than the aforementioned. In such cases, the camera becomes the most luxurious compact packages for those who absolutely must have telemöjligheter to minimal weight relative to the image quality (compact cameras with long zoom is not an option). For those who are content with normalzoomen is instead the more pocketable Canon G7 X or Sony RX100 better options.