GX9 Thoughts

agentlossing

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
4,438
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
It's been said before that the GX9 is kind of the unwanted stepchild. I just got mine in hand, so I wanted to make some observations and get thoughts from you guys as I get to know it. Here's what struck me right away:

  • This thing is hefty! It's made of some more metallic feeling composite than the GX85, even though it doesn't strike me as metal at all. The glossy plastic top plate is the same. But the bottom plate feels colder, like metal. Not sure what it actually is. But the body is a bit larger and heavier than the GX85, it feels like it means business.
  • The menu system is more different looking than I would have expected from the GX85. The custom "wrench" menu is also super complex, starting to feel like Olympus inside that particular folder.
  • EVF feels largely the same. Honestly it hurts my eyes to look through it for an extended time, I already knew it would be like the past models with the same EVF so I am not surprised, but boy, it's the one real downside to this camera. I just want it for framing though. The tilt feature I may actually like, as it makes it easier to shoot without jamming my cheek against the back of the camera.
  • Controls feel nice. The dials all have the right amount of resistance, with more for the exposure comp, even a little more for the mode dial, but an easy toothy clickiness to the front dial.
  • I may want a grip. Especially since I have the biggish Sigma 30mm f1.4.
  • The grain setting slows the live view down massively. Digital grain filters usually do. I recommend shooting RAW and processing in camera if you want to have the camera add grain, because it will feel a lot smoother than shooting with grain setting on.
It's good to have it back, though. A perfect companion? Not really, but who among us is?

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 

SkiHound

Mu-43 Veteran
Joined
Jan 28, 2012
Messages
444
It has some significant limitations that might be a deal breaker for some. I think Panasonic made a huge mistake with naming, going from GX7 to GX8 (a very different camera that disappointed many who wanted a direct GX7 successor) and back to GX9 (which disappointed many who wanted a direct successor the the GX8). I just think they were very different cameras. The EVF was a complete disappointment. I find it useable, but... I find the dials too stiff, though you don't want them too easily moved either. I felt like it lacked some things that made it a complete camera. Of course, all cameras present compromises. For me, the GX9 is simply the most fun camera I've ever owned. I find it terrific for travel, street, and as a day-to-day companion. Small, light, inconspicuous, operates fast, ... I have a G9 for the times the situations in which the GX9's warts really limit it's use. The G9 is simply a better overall photographic tool, and I really like it too. But it's the GX9 that goes with me all those times I'm not going out to do photography, but want a good camera along for the ride. I think you have to view cameras as tools, there are some things for which they are really good, and some for which they're not.
 

sgt08

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Mar 12, 2011
Messages
1,260
Location
Hong Kong
Real Name
Scott
Thanks for the comparison to the GX85, I agree this is a really fun line of bodies for daily/hobbyist use. Pretty much the only thing I dislike is the EVF and it's enough to put me off the GX9 as a replacement (even though I would love to go back to a tilting EVF, I used the VF-4 on Oly Pen bodies for years). Perhaps the GX10 will move to a larger panel/magnification, and ideally full 4:3 ratio, but who knows.

In the meantime I'm leaning towards the E-M5 III. Did you give that one some thought as well instead of the GX9? I know for some people it comes down to rangefinder vs. mini-dslr style, Dual IS compatibility if you're already using Pany lenses, of course price difference, etc.
 

agentlossing

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
4,438
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
I think you have to view cameras as tools, there are some things for which they are really good, and some for which they're not.
I think you're on to it there - the GX9 has to be the most dispassionate camera purchase I've made. Yet one I knew would prove a reliable tool. I might have just kept my GX85, but truth be told I got a good price for it with the Oly 25mm that I found I didn't use enough (I think I got $500 for the two with a half case) and that helped fund a vacation last year.


In the meantime I'm leaning towards the E-M5 III. Did you give that one some thought as well instead of the GX9?
That camera was one that made me wait on buying for a while. But in the end I was a little disappointed with what it brought to the table, and the price. Considering I paid literally half what a new EM5 III costs body only for a body only, dekitted new GX9, I'm satisfied with the trade offs.
 

mpeg

4/3 Activist...
Joined
Jun 19, 2012
Messages
1,010
Location
Perth Western Australia
Real Name
Gordo
Received mine new a few days ago......connected with grip bought from E-bay ( US$27-50 )......Off to Vietnam next week to give it a good christening..
Pana 12-60 f3.5-5.6.....Pana 20mmf1.7....Pana 42.5f1.7......

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 

saladin

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
May 29, 2015
Messages
1,838
Location
Melbourne
Real Name
jason
If the GX9 had a top notch evf and was weathersealed, I'd own one. And it'd be close to the perfect everyday camera , for me. I've always said that the G9 sensor and shutter/ibis in a Gx8 body would have been my ideal. And that's not just a preconceived opinion - I owned a Gx85 briefly but never got along with the EVF. 5 minutes in the store with the GX9 was enough to remind me of that. In all other ways, it's a great little camera.

Alas, it has neither and so I looked elsewhere. And wait to see what happens next with the Gx line.

I'd actually love to see a FF Gx8 style camera, but that's a whole other story.
 
Last edited:

sgt08

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Mar 12, 2011
Messages
1,260
Location
Hong Kong
Real Name
Scott
I have that same/similar grip for my GX85! It looks bigger in the photos than in person… haven't used it much yet but the idea was to use it for macros, I can hold the camera comfortably with one hand and a flash in the left hand.
 

agentlossing

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
4,438
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
I think I may get the JJC grip that's designed after the Panasonic one. I have a couple of JJC accessories for my GR and I'm impressed with the overall quality. They can keep on making accessories for cameras I own at affordable prices as far as I'm concerned :)
 

davidzvi

Super Moderator
Joined
Aug 12, 2012
Messages
3,889
Location
Outside Boston MA
Real Name
David
I think I may get the JJC grip that's designed after the Panasonic one. I have a couple of JJC accessories for my GR and I'm impressed with the overall quality. They can keep on making accessories for cameras I own at affordable prices as far as I'm concerned :)
I really liked the MegaGear 1/2 case I had for my GX85.

I thought about getting another GX85 or a GX9 when I was planning to sell off my Fuji gear. The GX85 was a fun camera and I really do prefer a tilt screen. In the end I decided against it, but not because either are bad cameras. I completely agree Panasonic messed things up when they went from the GX7 --> GX8 --> GX85 --> GX9.
 

agentlossing

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
4,438
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
Okay, something I have discovered I really like about the GX9, and which I haven't seen mentioned in the majority of user opinions... actually two things, in concert, which make it a much easier to use camera for me than the GX85: a settings-wide minimum shutter speed, and the ability to use the EV Comp dial to bias auto-ISO. The minimum shutter speed is implemented surprisingly well for something that was absent in the past from Panasonic cameras: not only does it work in all modes except M, but Panasonic was smart enough to make it available to the function buttons. So I can set the Function-1 button to minimum SS and then a simple press of the button and a spin of the front dial (the easiest and pleasantest dial) and I can change minimum shutter speed on the fly without getting into menus. Genius! When using A mode, I can now have my minimum shutter speed set and use the EV Comp dial to bias auto-ISO while still maintaining the aperture and allowing the shutter speed to go higher than my minimum to keep the exposure where I want it. I couldn't do this at all with the GX85.
 

threeOh

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Aug 22, 2019
Messages
83
GX85 owner here. I’m new, this was an inexpensive entry to m4/3. I use the front dial for EV. How is this different (“I couldn't do this at all with the GX85.”)? I understand the minimum shutter setting but that’s independent of EV — I think.
 

mumu

Mu-43 Veteran
Joined
Jan 16, 2012
Messages
442
Okay, something I have discovered I really like about the GX9, and which I haven't seen mentioned in the majority of user opinions... actually two things, in concert, which make it a much easier to use camera for me than the GX85: a settings-wide minimum shutter speed, and the ability to use the EV Comp dial to bias auto-ISO.
Dating back to, I think my GH2, and definitely my GX7, I've been able to use either of the programmable control dials to set the EV comp. just by turning it and yes, it works with auto-ISO.

The minimum shutter speed is implemented surprisingly well for something that was absent in the past from Panasonic cameras:
Yes, that is like a killer feature of the GX9 over my GX7 and G85. It is very useful for street photography where I need to keep the shutter speed at a minimum speed to deal with my walking motion as well as sticking to a specific or minimum aperture to maintain a minimum depth of field for zone focusing.
 

CyVan

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Mar 9, 2016
Messages
1,293
Location
Jamaica
Dating back to, I think my GH2, and definitely my GX7, I've been able to use either of the programmable control dials to set the EV comp. just by turning it and yes, it works with auto-ISO.


Yes, that is like a killer feature of the GX9 over my GX7 and G85. It is very useful for street photography where I need to keep the shutter speed at a minimum speed to deal with my walking motion as well as sticking to a specific or minimum aperture to maintain a minimum depth of field for zone focusing.
I think he forgot to mention , its Exposure Compensation in Manual mode with Auto-ISO. That was always a big complaint with the Panasonic cameras until the GH5 implemented it finally.

Interestingly tho, u'd use that combo when u wanted to manage Aperture and SS yourself (hence M mode) but u still wanted the camera to manage small exposure changes using ISO, and ofcourse have the ability to change the bias of that auto-iso with the EC dial if necessary. As he said it was good for fast street shooting etc. However with the min'm shutter speed option u don't need to use M mode as much now. Now u can just stay in A mode , set min'm shutter speed so it doesn't drop below ur threshold (which u'd have to do manually before) and have it work with auto-ISO. Only raising ISO when exposure hits your min'm SS.

I loved that aspect of the GX9 , + the my menu etc just hated the EVF.
 

agentlossing

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
4,438
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
GX85 owner here. I’m new, this was an inexpensive entry to m4/3. I use the front dial for EV. How is this different (“I couldn't do this at all with the GX85.”)? I understand the minimum shutter setting but that’s independent of EV — I think.
Yes, @CyVan is correct that I meant to say that the EV Comp biasing auto-ISO is strictly in manual. It's sort of inferred in that manual w/auto-ISO is the only mode where EV Comp would specifically be affecting ISO rather than another setting. My apologies for the lack of clarity.


Interestingly tho, u'd use that combo when u wanted to manage Aperture and SS yourself (hence M mode) but u still wanted the camera to manage small exposure changes using ISO, and ofcourse have the ability to change the bias of that auto-iso with the EC dial if necessary. As he said it was good for fast street shooting etc. However with the min'm shutter speed option u don't need to use M mode as much now. Now u can just stay in A mode , set min'm shutter speed so it doesn't drop below ur threshold (which u'd have to do manually before) and have it work with auto-ISO. Only raising ISO when exposure hits your min'm SS.
Exactly. I think of changing settings as affecting creative effects on the image. In A mode, I am primarily thinking about how a given aperture affects settings. Occasionally I'll use S, for when I want to drag the shutter, etc. M gives me both at once - but I don't often find myself wanting creative effects of both aperture and shutter at once. I just want control over the setting I am not primarily focused on so it won't ruin the image. That's where minimum shutter speed comes in. With the GX85 I had to use manual on the street more than I wanted. You can use shutter as basically EV Comp but that gets tricky, and if auto-ISO is on then there's no way to set your own EV. And the camera doesn't allow for directly using ISO as your quick EV Comp because you have to manipulate a combination of dial/button instead of just dialing in one control.

I think my A mode setup will prove invaluable to my shooting.
 

agentlossing

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
4,438
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
To follow that up, the reason I like to have minimum SS so easily accessible on a function button is to adjust to changing light conditions. I'll use a safer minimum SS in better light, and a riskier one if the light is bad.
 

CyVan

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Mar 9, 2016
Messages
1,293
Location
Jamaica
To follow that up, the reason I like to have minimum SS so easily accessible on a function button is to adjust to changing light conditions. I'll use a safer minimum SS in better light, and a riskier one if the light is bad.
Yup. When I'm shooting carnival at sunset I'd keep an eye on the ISO the camera was using and if it got too high for my liking I'd turn down SS a bit more and just choose more static subjects (not easy during carnival :D)
 

agentlossing

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
4,438
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
Not that I had thought it would be otherwise, knowing the GX85, but, nice colors out of camera!

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 

User ID

Mu-43 Regular
Joined
Sep 1, 2018
Messages
70
Sooooo mannnny comments about the implementation
of the controls that are used for tweaking the AE modes.
Just can't relate to it. And I'm not an "M-mode Purist" at
all. But the typical approaches I'm seeing to "advanced"
use of AE modes seem like so much tea pot tempest :-(

I use two methods of "hybrid AE-mode/M-mode" when
not using GM-mode [Guesstimation Manual mode]:

1. "One Push AE" in M-mode. It's a truly special
feature that is unique to Lumix cameras.

2. Toggled AEL, in any AE mode. Very common
feature industry-wide. Pretty much the flip side
of "One Push AE in M-mode". This creates an
EV coupling at the AE-chosen settings.

Give these two methods a try. See what they do for you.
For me, I feel I get more direct control, rather than the
indirect control of the tweaking tools so many users are
applying to AE modes ... minimum SS, +/- biasing, etc.

I spoze I should mention that I never use Auto ISO. I just
don't. No special reason ... other than it seems creepy. I
only mention it here cuz I don't know whether enabling
Auto ISO might screw up the simple magic of methods
'1' and '2' above. Maybe no problem, but I do not know.
 

agentlossing

Mu-43 Hall of Famer
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
4,438
Real Name
Andrew Lossing
Sooooo mannnny comments about the implementation
of the controls that are used for tweaking the AE modes.
Just can't relate to it. And I'm not an "M-mode Purist" at
all. But the typical approaches I'm seeing to "advanced"
use of AE modes seem like so much tea pot tempest :-(

I use two methods of "hybrid AE-mode/M-mode" when
not using GM-mode [Guesstimation Manual mode]:

1. "One Push AE" in M-mode. It's a truly special
feature that is unique to Lumix cameras.

2. Toggled AEL, in any AE mode. Very common
feature industry-wide. Pretty much the flip side
of "One Push AE in M-mode". This creates an
EV coupling at the AE-chosen settings.

Give these two methods a try. See what they do for you.
For me, I feel I get more direct control, rather than the
indirect control of the tweaking tools so many users are
applying to AE modes ... minimum SS, +/- biasing, etc.

I spoze I should mention that I never use Auto ISO. I just
don't. No special reason ... other than it seems creepy. I
only mention it here cuz I don't know whether enabling
Auto ISO might screw up the simple magic of methods
'1' and '2' above. Maybe no problem, but I do not know.
I'm a little confused by your comments, I am quite familiar with manual mode. We were talking about street photography situations where adjusting manual settings in a split second is not really feasible. The settings I described allowed for a lot more control than your typical AE modes while still allowing for an instant photo.

One push AE in M - hate to break it to you, but my Ricoh GR has it as well. My problem with this is that it gives you essentially zero control over how the camera gets there - in my setup I know that aperture will be how I want it, and that shutter speed will be acceptable. One touch AE basically gets you to a neutral exposure that might still need tweaking but with camera-selected settings that could be far off from what I want.

Auto-ISO is creepy? Not sure I'm following you.
 

Latest posts

Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Mu-43 is a fan site and not associated with Olympus, Panasonic, or other manufacturers mentioned on this site.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Copyright © 2009-2019 Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom