My User Experience Review of the Panasonic DMC-G5

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by entropicremnants, Apr 27, 2013.

  1. entropicremnants

    entropicremnants Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 16, 2012
    John Griggs
    My latest blog post is a user-experience type review of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5. The G6 is coming out and the very excellent G5 may be available for much less.

    I did a short review here on the site, but the blog post pulls together a lot of my posts on the G5 including talking about the E-M5's "purple blob" problem. There's a lot of image samples sprinkled through it as usual, lol.

    BLOG.ENTROPICREMNANTS.COM: Diversity's Real Value: A Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 Camera Review
     
  2. mnhoj

    mnhoj There and back again

    Dec 3, 2011
    Los Angeles
    John M
    Great write up with excellent images.

    Well done John.
     
  3. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Steve
    It's funny... like you, John, have both the G5 and the LX7. Now, I have targetted the OM-D/E-M5. But I'm trying to wait for a good price on close-out, which I assume will happen once its replacement is announced (expected in September).

    Some of my Panasonic and Olympus micro four-thirds gear appears to overlap and duplicate function. But, as you have discovered, some cameras and lenses are better for some tasks than others. And some combinations work better than others in certain situations.
     
  4. svtquattro

    svtquattro Mu-43 Veteran

    354
    Sep 24, 2012
    Vancouver, Canada
    Great writeup. I'll read it again later but I concur on almost all your points about the G5. It's taken me a few weeks (and 1000 frames) to warm to its charms. And now I must shoot RAW. But the sensor is capable, it just makes me work a tad harder than with the E-PM2 to get the desired results.

    Thanks again. I haven't seen too many enthusiast reviews of the G5 and yours is at the top of the list.
     
  5. ShrubMonkey

    ShrubMonkey Mu-43 Regular

    58
    Apr 6, 2012
    Great write up John. I have the EM5 and G5 too (together with an EP3). G5 is a great camera, makes up for the horrible sized an handling G3
     
  6. entropicremnants

    entropicremnants Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 16, 2012
    John Griggs
    First of all, thanks for the encouraging feedback everyone!

    It's amazing how "under the radar" the G5 is. I think it is in many ways just too "G" which everyone has seen. Lightweight plastic that people don't take seriously perhaps? Certainly it was completely overshadowed by the E-M5 which was not only a whole new direction for Olympus but also had many eye-catching design elements and so forth.

    I agree that for some images it might be more work to get what you want -- but in my shooting that's not a lot of images.

    I'm taking the G5 on an urbex run with the 7-14mm this weekend and I've had enough experience with it now to really feel confident. The E-M5 will be in the mix too but with probably the Panasonic 25mm f/1.4 for some handheld work while the G5 will be on the tripod doing HDR brackets and the like.

    My "Diversity" tag line in the review title is really how I feel about the combination -- there's real complementary strength in the two designs.
     
  7. entropicremnants

    entropicremnants Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 16, 2012
    John Griggs
    Thanks!

    G3 features in a G2 body would have been a serious winner. I have a G3 which I'm giving to my daughter Alyssa and it's certainly not TOO awful, lol -- but it's no G5.

    I do think Alyssa will adapt well to it and she needs to move up from the G1 she has. As a young adult just getting started she has no funds for buying new cams so I'm trading her the G3 for her G1 -- and her G1 will go into my camera collection. It was the first micro four thirds camera and established the breed and it deserves a place in my collection.
     
  8. dweller

    dweller Mu-43 Veteran

    378
    Sep 14, 2012
    London, UK
    Thanks for the writeup. Last week I made an impulse buy of the G5 and two lens kit for a very good price. I've had G2 (another bargain) for a year. If I sell the lenses, the body should come out an even better bargain.
    So far (very limited use) I'm not sure that I didn't jump too soon. I feel I'm going to miss the manual dials for focus area, af-mf and burst/bracket/timer. Those are just so useful to me.
    I just click with the G2 ergonomics especially with legacy lenses.
    But your review encourages me to persevere. So I will. Cheers.
     
  9. entropicremnants

    entropicremnants Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 16, 2012
    John Griggs
    Thanks for your comment.

    Give that 45-150mm a good run, Dweller -- it's another "sleeper". I am very impressed with it given it's size and weight particularly and I'm keeping it. It came as part of a trade deal where I swapped an E-PL5 and VF-2 for a G5 two lens kit.

    And I so agree! I love those extra controls on the G1/G2. I was shooting Nikon when my then younger-and-living-at-home daughter asked for the G1. When I held it and used it a bit I could tell it was a winner. It didn't woo me away from DSLR's at that time... but I got there eventually, lol.
     
  10. dweller

    dweller Mu-43 Veteran

    378
    Sep 14, 2012
    London, UK
    Thanks. I already have the 45 200 lens, but the 45 150 is certainly a great size weight, even with hood on. Better for hiking with.
    My thing is trying to justify my frugal/guilty/tightfisted self that having GF1,G2, G5 and two similar zooms is somehow ok.
    I'm very bad at letting cameras go!
     
  11. twokatmew

    twokatmew Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2012
    Lansing, MI, US
    Margaret
    Great review, thanks! That iAuto lets you shoot RAW is great. I never knew that! I sure don't *need* another camera, but your G5 posts and photos are making me think seriously about adding a Panny body at some point. :eek: :wink:
     
  12. svtquattro

    svtquattro Mu-43 Veteran

    354
    Sep 24, 2012
    Vancouver, Canada
    Have any of you tried the Huelight profiles? I went from ugly JPEG to RAW with these and I couldn't believe the difference.

    That being said, it looks like the Adobe Camera RAW converters are also quite decent (just using my LR4 trial).
     
  13. SteveG

    SteveG Mu-43 Rookie

    24
    Apr 9, 2013
    NJ
    Nice writeup and photos! Just a note, you have the caption for "Misty Spring Beauty" stating you used the 45-150mm @40mm! Quite a feat! :)

    I did the opposite of you... I just purchased an E-M5 after owning a G5 for a few months. I really wanted the IBIS and weather sealing for the 14-54mm mkii that I'm in love with. I expected to fall head over heels for the Oly and was surprised that for everything not directly IQ related I found myself leaning towards the G5, and even then it's no slouch as you've pointed out. Not until I got the Oly did I realize just how nice the G5 was to use once setup to my tastes. It just handles so nicely and is much more intuitive to me.

    I think you hit it on the head that the materials used really keep this camera from being taken too seriously by a lot of people. It feels cheap compared to the E-M5 and some of it's larger peers. Also the styling of the E-M5 is just another point of differentiation compared to the typical DSLR styling of the G5.

    I'll +1 your statements on the 45-150mm lens. In reasonable light it can produce some beautiful images.
     
  14. entropicremnants

    entropicremnants Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 16, 2012
    John Griggs
    I use only Adobe Lightroom and I'm currently at 4.4. It's ability to organize my work with keywords is lovely and the combination of excellent editor, RAW developer, and catalog maintenance just thrills me.

    Thanks! Your experience is very much like mine. I love both cameras and I'm glad I'm able to have both instead of having to choose only one.

    Thank you, Margaret! Oh no! I'm giving you GAS! I'm so sorry! :tongue:
     
  15. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Terrific review! I think every G series camera has ended up being a bit under the radar and a huge value. For a long time, the G1 was the best value (IMO of course) in MFTs. Same for the G2, G3, and now G5. For a while the best value was refub Olys from Cameta, but mostly it has been the G series, offering great sensor performance, controls, ergonomics, and viewfinders at pretty unbelievable prices if you wait a while for them.

    Great job showing the issue with colored flare/reflections, and while it's true that that issue isn't related to Panasonic's in-camera corrections, Panasonic's corrections remain a significant advantage for Panasonic cameras. Lateral CA remains a significant issue with most lenses, and the Panasonic in-camera corrections address color fringing very well for Panasonic lenses (and carry over into Lightroom). I notice it a lot shooting my Panasonic 14mm f/2.5 lens on Oly bodies. There was never any color fringing with this lens on my GX1, and it's there and sometimes noticeable on my E-PM2 and E-M5.
     
  16. twokatmew

    twokatmew Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2012
    Lansing, MI, US
    Margaret
    Huelight profiles are camera profiles that work with both Lightroom and ACR. I've only used them with my E-PM2 and E-M5, but I find they provide a more pleasing place to start when processing RAW and DNG files.

    Huelight ACR & Lightroom Camera Profiles

    :biggrin:
     
  17. entropicremnants

    entropicremnants Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 16, 2012
    John Griggs
    All good points and I probably should have mentioned something about the Panasonic in camera corrections. Often I don't even think about that since shooting RAW in Lightroom it's a single-click to correct it in post. If you were a JPG shooter though ESPECIALLY -- the Panasonic is worthy of consideration because of that feature.

    Thanks, Amin!
     
  18. emptysensor

    emptysensor Mu-43 Veteran

    435
    Dec 8, 2011
    Virginia
    Joe
    Great read and photos John. I think you've nearly convinced me to replace my GX1 with the G5. I grew up in a steel town and would love to get access inside the mill when I go home but it's still operating. Barely. Love your industrial stuff.
     
  19. spatulaboy

    spatulaboy I'm not really here

    Jul 13, 2011
    North Carolina
    Vin
    Great review! I was thinking about writing one on here myself but I never have time (also I'm lazy). Thanks for sharing John!

    Something I want to point out: The touchscreen remains active even when using EVF, you don't have to swing the screen out. Just move your thumb over to change focus point. It is one of their best innovations in my opinion, so useful! Also, this was first introduced in the G5, so no previous Gs have this feature.

    The G5 is a superb camera on it's own merits. In fact, it is plenty for most people's photographic needs. When you factor in the great price, it's hard not to recommend it. Use that money you save to get some nice lenses. That's what I did.
     
  20. entropicremnants

    entropicremnants Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jul 16, 2012
    John Griggs
    Thanks!

    Thanks also for pointing that out about the touchscreen and I should have mentioned it since I know about it. I just find that with my hands that is too clumsy an operating position (unless I'm on a tripod) so I usually swing it out.