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Panasonic cameras (G3)

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by ronyzmbow, Feb 27, 2012.

  1. ronyzmbow

    ronyzmbow Mu-43 Rookie

    Dec 12, 2011
    As wrote in another Olympus forum I am using Olympus DSLR for a long time. Today I use E-1 with 14-54 lens plus 40-150 mk. 2 and 35 Macro. Used to own also E-520.

    I was reading a lot about the Micro 4-3 but never decided to join in. I have checked the Olympus offers and the E-P3, E-PL3 and E-PM-1 are very nice but without a viewfinder and an aging sensor. The OM-D-E5 seems great but way over priced in my opinion. So are the Olympus Micro 4-3 lenses.

    This made me look deeper at what Panasonic has to offer, I checked their cameras and lenses. I liked a lot what the Panasonic G3 offers and the price is very attractive as well. I also read about their lenses and most of them have very good reviews and their prices are not too high.

    How good is the G3 in practical use?
    How good is the IQ?
    How good are the Panasonic lenses?
    Will I feel a big difference from my good old Olympus equipment?

    Any comments based on your experience are welcomed.
  2. Linh

    Linh Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Apr 14, 2009
    Maryland, US
    G3's main flaw in practical use is the location and feel of the Fn1 button. Fn2 isn't in a good place for me either, but I leave it as quick menu anyway. This is coming from a 5D/40D user.

    IQ is pretty good, though I do notice more shadow noise in certain situations. I'm happy with it as I felt the 16MP sensor was able to meet or exceed what I had in my 40D most of the time.

    Pansonic's lenses are quite nice. I don't think you'll be disappointed here. But the Oly 45/1.8 is probably one of the best bargains for m43, it is certainly not overpriced like the 12/2 (though, only marginally so I believe, still, hard to swallow).

    The E-M5 isn't all that overpriced really. Presumably, it'll match the GH2 in IQ. It'll be weather sealed. And it'll have a brand new IS system. All at $100 over the GH2, body only pricing. And built better too. I'd say there's a premium to them both. And what adds to the overpriced feel is the unfortunate lack of resale value for m43 bodies. They drop like a rock in the used market.
  3. shnitz

    shnitz Mu-43 All-Pro

    The other downside of the G3 is that they tried to downsize it so much, so as not to impact the GH2's sales. The overall quality of the camera is great, but the battery is pretty small (especially since m4/3 cameras use more battery because of the constant LCD/EVF usage compared to 4/3 and other DSLRs), and that smaller grip may or may not bother you compared to the GH2 (I don't know why they did it, as with a lens attached, the camera is the same overall depth as the G1 or G2). I consider this to be a pretty accurate review:
    Panasonic G3 Review
    If you're used to the E-1, the lack of controls may bother you. Also, there is no great zoom yet like the 14-54mm or 50-200mm; you can use these lenses with the Panasonic MA1 on the G3, but you'll quickly learn that "autofocus" is used loosely. If you're willing to shoot with primes, there are a few stars in the lineup, but I don't expect there to be a good selection of high-quality zooms in the next few years.

    I agree that the lenses are overpriced in m4/3 land. So are the bodies, which is why there is a lack of resale value, and why the costs of m4/3 cameras drops so dramatically over the course of the production run. Considering the technology and materials that are going into these cameras vs. SLRs, the profit margins on these cameras are tremendous for Panasonic and Olympus. There's no way that an E-M5 costs the same to develop and build as a Pentax K-5 or Nikon D7000. Yes it matches the GH2 in IQ, but it's over a year older, which is a generation in m4/3 land (and it also doesn't have the larger multi-aspect capability of the GH2). If you decide to stay on the back end of the technology wave, you can keep costs down and avoid paying that m4/3 premium. For example, I bought the G2 when it was selling for $300. The Panasonic 14-42mm non-X lens is currently $140 at Amazon, the Olympus 40-150mm non-R (functionally identical to the R version) is half the price, and the 14mm is currently available through ebay for less than half of what it's selling for here in the US. If you buy the G3 now, it's a bit better price, but try to pay $550-$600 with 14-42mm lens, as that essentially leaves you paying $450 for the body. Also, try to stay away from the "X" version of the lens, which has had various optical issues.
  4. demiro

    demiro Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Nov 7, 2010
    I found the G3 to be a capable camera but not very much fun to use. The overall size, shape, button layout, having to manually switch from evf to lcd -- the camera and I just didn't click.
  5. Linh

    Linh Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Apr 14, 2009
    Maryland, US
    I don't think it's as simple as that. I would argue the fact that panasonic (and to an extent oly) has pumped so many cameras in a short period of time having its impact on resale. And with only minor increments in changes, it floods a market that doesn't really exist compared to canikon gear. Not to mention just general brand factor.
  6. Aegon

    Aegon Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 3, 2011
    Portland, OR
    Everybody has different tolerance, especially when it comes to prices.

    I personally felt like the G3 was too close in price to the GH2, so I bought a GH2. I think the GH2 may keep its value better and it provides some extra features that I may possibly use.

    For reference, at this time used G3s sell for about $400ish and used GH2s sell for about $550ish. There is a non-zero price difference. But I thought it might be worthwhile to go for the GH2 instead.
  7. napilopez

    napilopez Contributing Editor

    Feb 21, 2012
    NYC Area
    Napier Lopez
    Unlike for you guys, the G3 is my first real camera, so I'm not coming from the exact same perspective, but I'll try to chime in. *Note: I had bought an E-PL1 originally, but returned it and waited for another paycheck so I could get the G3. I don't regret it at all, except for a few things I prefer about Olympus design*

    For me, the price gap between the G3 and GH2 was large enough that I opted for the former. I'm impatient, and as a poor college student, buying the GH2 would mean needing to save up for another 2 or 3 paychecks so I could buy it and still afford to feed myself =P

    But even more than the price, I think, was the size difference. Obviously they're both small cameras in the grand scheme of things, but to me the size difference between the G3 and GH2 meant the difference between being able to take the camera with me everywhere, and not being able to. I generally carry the G3 body in one pocket(usually a coat pocket), lens in another.

    Furthermore, I may be in the minority, but I much prefer the feel of the G3. Although many prefer the beefier grip of the GH2, I have relatively small hands for a male my size, so grip amount isn't an issue. The G3 is made out of metal, vs plastic for the GH2, so it feels substantially more solid to me.

    I don't have an issue with the G3's handling, although one more function button would be a godsend to me, since I use the EVF for 70% of my shots(and thus can't use the versatile touch screen for settings). I don't really mind the lack of an eye sensor.

    The only thing that I don't like about the G3 are the parts of it that are software-crippled. Things like Tele conversion in 1080i video mode, manual controls for and during video.

    I can't comment much on lenses, since the only m4/3 lens I have so far is the kit lens. Otherwise, I only have cheap adapted, manual focus/aperture primes, which are a Fotasy 35mm f1.7 C-mount lens, and a Canon FD 50mm f1.4. The ability to get these cheap vintage primes are one of the top reasons to go for an m/43 camera, particularly if you're on a tight budget. Having a 100mm equivalent telephoto lens at f1.4 for only $50 dollars seems like an awfully good deal to me if you're fine with manual focus.
  8. pcake

    pcake Mu-43 Regular

    May 3, 2010
    i responded to the same post on another camera forum, but i did want to mention again that i found the g3 comfortable to hold (YMMV), i liked the features and controls.
  9. sin77

    sin77 Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 9, 2011
    I am very used to Panasonic FZ18 menu and thus G3 is something very familiar for me. I even find G3 to be more user-friendly than my Nikon.

    Having such a competitive price vs it's features (EVF, new sensor, full flip screen), I don't see why consumers should complain too much about the nitty-gritties.
  10. xdayv

    xdayv Color Blind

    Aug 26, 2011
    Tacloban City, Philippines
    I'll put my .02cents here...

    Coming from a Nikon DSLR background... I found the Panasonic cameras, G3 included, are easy to navigate and use, without even the need of reading the manual.

    It might be too small for some, but for me it's perfect size. I found the GH2 out of my comfort zone in terms of size.

    Panasonic has some top-notch lenses in the lineup.

  11. kenc

    kenc Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 18, 2011
    You can get GH2 bodies on ebay for around $200 less than the current pre-order price of the E-M5. No doubt street prices for both will come down but maybe more for the GH2, as a GH3 is rumored for later in the year,
  12. Preet

    Preet New to Mu-43

    Dec 20, 2013
    I just bought G3 and please do mind that i am completely new into photography...I have certain difficulties in taking pics few of them i have listed here
    1 the images literally all of them are really soft...they lack sharpness n crisp.
    2. colors look dull n faded.
    Can you please guide me how can this be rectified, lens m using s 14-42mm
    Thank You
  13. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    The G3 is a good camera for the price. Saying that I think the GX1 improved in certain areas including AWB, handling and definitely build quality.
  14. Aegon

    Aegon Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 3, 2011
    Portland, OR
    Hi Preet,

    You've resurrected a forgotten thread here. Some people who were participating long ago might not come back and see your post.

    I think you would get more replies and better replies if you created a new thread for your issue and also included example photos in your thread.

    Best of luck,
  15. snkenai

    snkenai Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 5, 2010
    To add to what others have said about the very modest (in my opinion), G3. Having started in the 4/3-m4/3 arena, several years ago, I have owned a variety of both. The while G3, is a very capable small camera, I never bonded with it at all. The slick, plasticity look and feel, as well as aukward controls compared to say, the G1, just left me frustrated. So, I passed it on to my daughter (an accomplished portrait photographer), and she likes it fine, with the Oly 14-42 IIr and the 45mm.

    The JPEGs, need to be tweaked if you want more saturation, contrast, or sharpening.

    Other folks opinion, will not give you the actual experience that you will get, from the actual camera in hand.

    This thread is obviously too old, to help the op. I only add my thoughts for someone that is maybe even now, considering the G3 option.
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