1. Reminder: Please use our affiliate links for holiday shopping!

GM1 vs PM2 Sensor?

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by tjdean01, Dec 7, 2013.

  1. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    842
    Feb 20, 2013
    I've read that the PM2 is a better sensor by about a stop in higher ISO situations. IMO PM2 has no IBIS (it hurts more than it helps). They take the same lenses. Image quality alone, which is a better camera?
     
  2. RnR

    RnR Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 25, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    Hasse
    PM2 has the E-M5 Sony sensor which has broadly speaking the capabilities as the GX7 sensor which is in the GM1... or have I missed something?
     
  3. gcogger

    gcogger Mu-43 Veteran

    342
    May 25, 2010
    UK
    Graeme
    You've not missed anything - you're absolutely correct :)
     
    • Like Like x 1
  4. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    842
    Feb 20, 2013
    Then the posters I've been reading have missed something! :(

    So, I know the Olympus cameras have always been a bit better, but since the GX7 (and now the GM1) you guys are saying they're equal? I'd like to see a few ISO 3200 side-by-sides, just to verify. :thumbup:
     
  5. angusr

    angusr Mu-43 Regular

    79
    Sep 21, 2011
    Well they are ahead on a sense because the olympus cameras are about 18 months older, but the results are very similar. There are plenty of comparison shots out there (gx7 vs the olys). You can assume that for high ISO noise, gx7 = gm1.
     
  6. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Steve
    This is my understanding as well. So why does the DxO sensor test comparsion between the GX7 and GM1 give different results for the two cameras?

    http://www.dxomark.com/Reviews/Pana...DMC-GM1-sensor-performance-Good-but-not-great

    Here's the GM1 versus the E-PM2 as well:

    http://www.dxomark.com/Reviews/Pana...-vs-Olympus-PEN-E-PM2-Competitive-Performance
     
  7. leftnose

    leftnose Mu-43 Regular

    46
    Dec 5, 2013
    I've never been a big fan/believer of DxO but it could well be the different packaging of the GM1 that caused the different score. There could well be more electronic interference to the sensor due to proximity of circuitry to the sensor vs. the GX7.
     
  8. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Heat dissipation might be a problem for the GM1 as it's so tiny, resulting in more thermal noise?
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Steve
    Or how about sample variation? Either way, it makes me question Dxo's results even more. Or at least it's relevency.
     
  10. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    Northumberland
    Since this is the very first time we can buy a very small Olympus and a very very small Panasonic which both produce generally similar output ... the OP's question is important.
    In the past this wasn't so.

    GM1 has a tiny popup flash!
    e-pM2 is much cheaper.
    Each has different menu options and slightly different focus behaviour (I'm assuming they focus as their predecessors with some slight improvements) and very different Jpeg tweaks.
    If you understand what each manufacturer's products do you can make a nice choice.
     
  11. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Chicago-area
    David Dornblaser
    Hmmmm. The GM1 is one of my wife's Christmas presents as she complains that the PM, with any of the small zooms, is too big to take with her on business travel. I would like to see images. I don't visit DxO until someone posts a thread like this ............
     
  12. krugorg

    krugorg Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 18, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    I have had the GM1 in my shopping cart a few times as a Christmas gift for my wife too. I think she would really use and love the wi-fi feature for instant transfer to image sharing sites. Also, the size is about the same as her current Pentax Q. The only thing I wish is that the GM1 had a minimum shutter speed setting for Auto ISO.
     
  13. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Steve
    The problem with Dxomark is that it's hard to get a real feel for what the numbers mean. If you go to DPreview:

    http://www.dpreview.com/previews/panasonic-lumix-dmc-gm1/5

    you can see comparisons of images from the GM1 and the EM5. Pixel Peeping, but better than number peeping. What's interesting is making a comparison to the E-PL5 images, which look softer the the GM1 or the GM5. The IBIS problem again?
     
  14. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    842
    Feb 20, 2013
    Thanks for posting this. My thinking is this:

    GM1 is a better-looking camera that already comes with a 12-32 lens I want to buy anyway. It's smaller and the aftermarket grip isn't available on the PM2. And then the flash.

    PM2 is, well, free since I already have it (worth $300). The GM1 doesn't have IBIS but IMO PM2 doesn't either as it systematically guarantees that at certain shutter speeds, handheld, you will not get perfectly sharp results. The GM1 doesn't have the hot shoe either but again, I've never even removed the plastic cover on my PM2.

    So looks, grip, and flash is the GM1's advantage to me. If I'm planning on buying the 12-32 for $400 and selling the PM2 for $300 the GM1 will be practically free! :wink: I just don't know if I'd like the menus and the way it feels in my hand.

    Does GM1 also have the function where it "clean"s the sensor upon startup? I think that's a very useful feature.

    PS: on the DPreview widget someone above linked to, at ISO6400 and up the GM1 looks much better than the EM-5! WTF?
     
  15. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Chicago-area
    David Dornblaser
    Yes, not only is the GM1's body small, the lens is as well. It is the total package that makes it very attractive. IMHO - it is the kit lens that makes the E-PMx package unattractive.

    B&H has GM1s in stock and after I post this I am going to click on a banner ad and order one so that it is here for Christmas.
     
  16. RnR

    RnR Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 25, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    Hasse
    I thought my PM1 was small... then I held a GM1 in my hands a couple of days ago and my jaw kinda dropped. I knew it was small, but seeing the magic that Panasonic has whizzed up was very cool. The camera store didn't have it in black, nor the grip, so I didn't walk out with it :biggrin:
     
  17. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    Northumberland
    I'm looking at the "new studio comparison" widget right now,
    E-M5 and GM1,
    RAW 6400
    In some areas of the frame the noise (while looking identical in style) is slightly less from the GM1. Slightly. Some areas look absolutely identical.
     
  18. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Steve
    • Like Like x 1
  19. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    ...and that is why the E-PM2 is a no-brainer for me, lol. A hotshoe and accessory port over a pop-up flash? No brainer. ;) I would never use a pop-up flash for anything but triggering external lights, and even then I would rather use an external flash on the hotshoe or flash bracket to trigger them. I do a lot of manual focusing, so in certain situations (ie, like fast action or outdoor light) the EVF compatibility is a necessity.

    As far as what the camera can do as a camera, the E-PM2 is so much more versatile. The only thing the GM1 has over that is a slight reduction in an already small size. And nobody can deny that the much cheaper price of the E-PM2 is a huge bonus. The GM-1 does have an accessory grip which would have been a bonus if you were comparing to the E-PM1, but the E-PM2 has both a finger grip and a thumb grip, and the combination of those makes for a very firm hold which its predecessor did not have.

    The one complaint I hear over and over again by review sites when comparing Olympus and Panasonic cameras is the "frustrating menu system" of the Olympus camera, but anybody who actually uses the system knows that this is only because non-Olympus users don't know how to activate the Super Control Panel, and that simple one-screen Olympus menu system is really the best there is on the market. What's frustrating is that this point keeps getting brought up even though anybody with a bit of experience in the system knows the point is not only moot, but backwards. Of course, it's not the reviewers who are to blame for that lack of knowledge, it's Olympus for continuing to make their crappy "Live Guide" the default menu system and hiding the SCP that made their DSLRs so easy to navigate. :/

    But of course there are lots of differences between the cameras which mostly amount to personal taste. To me though, in terms of capabilities the E-PM2 is a no-brainer for the reasons already mentioned and I would never intentionally give up compatibility with lights and viewfinder in a full system camera. The idea of the Pen series is to be able to do everything that larger cameras can do, but in a smaller form factor. When you start taking away the capabilities and accessories which it is compatible with, then you have lost that purpose.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  20. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    842
    Feb 20, 2013
    Hey, Ned, haven't seen you for a while! I remember before even becoming a member here Google would find your posts on here for me before I made my decision to buy the PM2 over a year ago.

    I was surprised to see this thread refreshed. I started it because I was interested in the GM1. Back then, the smaller size and flash appealed to me. Upon doing some reading, however, the lack of a shutter really turned me off. PM2s IBIS isn't the greatest, but that extra stop or two when needed sure is nice.

    Fast forward to today and there's another reason: the GM1 is just too small to comfortably walk around with all day shooting for me. This fact wasn't a factor six months ago when I was planning to buy an OMD, but now I've decided the PM2 is good enough as I don't need 5-axis all that often and with the introduction of the 12-32 the PM2 can be mighty small itself!