First Look: The interchangeable-lens Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF5
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First Look: The interchangeable-lens Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF5

3:55 /

In the increasingly competitive market for entry-level interchangeable-lens cameras, the GF5 distinguishes itself with solid image quality and a very nice interface.

Like its predecessor the GF three. The Panasonic Lumix DMC GF five remains among my favorite choices for snap shooters who are looking for a faster better camera. It's similar enough to a point and shoot. Or -- phone that they're not forced out of their comfort zone. While the bodies come -- -- we constructed in very similar to the GF three. Panasonic has added a few physical controls the -- disappeared from them. But the most important physical change over the GF three is the new correct. The GF -- is very slippery. And this larger rubberized grip is huge improvement especially if you need to issue one hand. What keeps the direct access intelligent auto button that Panasonic wisely puts on top of all of its models. My only wish is that when you pressed it it didn't override your auto focus settings. The camera operates much like a point and shoot albeit with more sophisticated options such as the ability to fully customize the quick menu interface. To go with the new higher resolution LCD. Panasonic redesigned the look of the touch screen interface -- -- more attractive than before. It also incorporates the fly out tablet debuted in the GX one as well as interface -- -- touch screen is very nicely responsive. As with the GF three you can tell the flash backwards to produce more attractive flash exposures as well. The -- zoom kit lenses convenient and it collapses to make a very compact package. But it's a so so lands and reaching and zoom switch is annoying awkward. The G fives feature set is pretty standard for its class but -- is one of the few models that still has built in flash. And -- -- touch screen -- to probably consider the ability to operate the powers and lands via the screen a very nice feature. Also has a full complement of configurable special effects. And it -- a raw file simultaneously when you use them. That's the same resolution as the GF three GF five incorporates new version of the twelve megapixel sensor. And an updated version of its image processing engine. There's some improvement to the noise profile in JPEG processing -- the GF theory especially at -- iso sensitivities. That seems partly because the image coming off the sensor looks less noisy and expected advancement from one generation to the next. Overall though the colors look very nice and the default settings push saturation contrast gently enough but there's no discernible -- shift. A lot has a reasonable dynamic range you do -- some. None of this is unusual in the price class. -- -- an exposure generally on target JPEG photos -- slightly over sharpened but not crunchy. And finally the video quality is fine for typical consumer use you know vacation clips -- antics and -- goal scoring. The full time auto focus -- is a bit but works well enough. While the G if she's fast GF five is faster. Most important from a performance perspective though the camera never slowed -- down your shooting problem which I've encountered with some of the higher resolution models. Shooting raw plus JPEG feels fast and fluid and they never had to wait for the camera to finish writing an image file for it to review a shot or change settings. And -- CD is sufficiently visible in direct sunlight. Which is essential since the camera doesn't support an add on viewfinder. I think that Sony Alpha NE XF three has somewhat better photo quality overall and that one has a tilting LCD. But otherwise I like the design and interface of the GF -- better. I'm Lori Grunin and this is the Panasonic Lumix DMC --

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