Panasonic GH2/G2 still has the best ergonomics

Discussion in 'This or That? (MFT only)' started by RaZZ3R, Nov 20, 2012.

  1. RaZZ3R

    RaZZ3R Mu-43 Regular

    84
    Jun 19, 2011
    Italy
    Ovidiu
    In my honest opinion after looking at all the past and present options of Micro Four Thirds camera I still find my Panasonic G2 and, my wish camera, GH2. The reason I bought into this system was not the light weight possibilities, not the diminutive size but the excellent ergonomics and the plethora of buttons and controls. Compare to Canon EOS 550D, Nikon D5100, Sony A450 and Pentax K-r witch where my option at the time I bought my Panasonic neither had so many controls that where, some, essential to me.

    The most buttons, dials, switches that I use are most at the top, least at the bottom:

    * ISO (obviously)
    * Metering (very often)
    * Drive Mode
    * AF Mode
    * AF Select
    * AF/AE Lock
    * White Balance

    The one thing that very few people talk about is the excellent exposure dial because so many entry level and even enthusiast DSLR and MILC camera have one dial that makes a bit cumbersome to use where Panasonic G1/GH1/G2/GH2 (I really don't know what other models uses them) has a clickable dial that should and is equivalent to 2 dials and it's even easier to just us one finger to change 2 types of exposure (Aperture, Shutter Speed, EV) and the additional zoom in manual focus/manual lenses by engaging. Although it's not as good as having two of them but is hell a lot better then one. And since 3 out of 4 lenses that I own are manual legacy lenses (50mm f 1.8, 135mm f 2.8, 70-210mm f 4-5.6 all M42 mount) it's really awesome that I can change aperture on the lens and and EV in A/S Mode and the shutter speed in M Mode and clickable zoom with magnification at a turn of the dial.

    Seriously I just love using my camera because of its no-meniu all buttons/dials control and ergonomics that may be keeping me from upgrading.

    Canon EOS 550D
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    Canon EOS 650D
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    Nikon D5100
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    [​IMG]
    Nikon D5200
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    [​IMG]
    Olympus OM-D E-M5
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2
    [​IMG]
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    Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5
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    [​IMG]
    Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Pentax K-r
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Pentax K-30
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Sony Alpha A450
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Sony Alpha A57
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    [​IMG]

    I know it's a mood point, a very personal preference but from all the options above Panasonic G2 and Olympus OM-D E-M5 has the most controls available to you. I always loved the Canon lenses option but not there cameras, I like Nikon's cameras but not so much the lenses, I love Pentax cameras and lenses but something really wrong with there QC and prices, I never liked Sony's cameras because the have so much empty space on them and button for most if not useless options but they do have a very good selection of lenses. All in all my dream camera is the infamous Olympus OM-D E-M5 but I think I'm going to skip this generation for lack of money and curiosity of what are Panasonic's next toys. And I'm really disappointed in Panasonic GH3 because of it's ergonomics, I do like that it's a bit bigger but they could have kept, at least most of, the previous layout of the buttons and dials because they where very very good, maybe moved the ISO button on top, a small dial for metering where is now the AF mode ?

    Well anyways what is your opinion of the controls and ergonomics on your camera, how do they compare to others, maybe the reason you chosen that camera and not another (from the ergonomics and controls layout and options) and what would you like to see in the future on your or other's DSLR/MILC.
     
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  2. flash

    flash Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 29, 2010
    1 hour from Sydney Australia.
    Gordon
    It certainly is personal preference. I never really loved the way my G2 or GH2 handled. Nice cameras but I never really felt "one" with the camera. The clickable wheel was ingenious but it was another button to press to access a function and I always felt I had it on the wrong function. Personally I preferred the layout of the EP3 to the GH2.

    The G2 and GH2 don't have functional acessory grips available. Except the OMD, do any of the above. I had the OwnUser Grip for the OMD and it worked but it moved around a bit and the shutter release was a cludge.

    The only current m4/3 camera (GH3 not here yet) that I feel really at home with is the E-M5 and then, only with the grip on it. I, personally, need as direct access to shutter/aperture/ISO as possible so I like them on three independant dials that operate without any other button pushing required. Personally I couldn't care less about the other stuff. I'm prepared to menu dive for most of those (although I do appreciate them being more accessable) IF I get direct access to the big three. Currently the E-M5 is the closest, with a button push to get to ISO.

    The best mirrorless in this regard is the NEX7 and it's tri nav system. Shutter, Aperture and ISO all directly accessable.

    Gordon
     
  3. elavon

    elavon Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 1, 2012
    Tel Aviv Israel
    Ehud
    I do not upgrade to G3 because of the ergonomics. The G2 is very comfortable to use. I might even skip the G5 if Panasonic or Olympus will bring us a good ergonomics in the future model. The OMD is not my cup of tea, the buttons layout is not comfortable for me. The GH3 looks just too big but I might buy it if there will be no other option.
     
  4. spatulaboy

    spatulaboy I'm not really here

    Jul 13, 2011
    North Carolina
    Vin
    You can't really make a judgment unless you've physically handled all these cameras for a period of time. I mean the GH3 is not even available yet!

    I love my G2 but there are things I would love to change to it. For example, I'm always hitting the WB button by accident. And I wish I have more area for my thumb to rest. But that's the price to pay for a small form factor, which I value greatly.
     
  5. phrenic

    phrenic Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 13, 2010
    I used to think the g1 had the best ergonomics..but the g5 is pretty much superior in handling in all ways. The zoom toggle can act as a second dial for exposure compensation and the grip is as good as it gets in m43 imho. That said, its not exactly sexy..

    Sent from my iPad using Mu-43 App
     
  6. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Sep 5, 2011
    I'll agree that the GH2 has the best ergos in m43 (except maybe the G5, which I haven't had the chance to try out yet, but it has it's issues, too. Chief among them is that it's too easy to inadvertently hit the WB and ISO buttons.

    I'm not sure I'd agree it's the best, period. The larger bodies of cameras like the 50D, 7D, and similarly spec'd Nikons are, for me, better in most respects (but not in weight).

    Flash, I'm not sure what you mean by functional accessory grips. If you're talking about a horizontal grip, it doesn't need one. Unlike any of the Olympus cameras, it has a good grip built in. If you're talking about a vertical grip, there is a 3rd party one, although I haven't tried it.
     
  7. RaZZ3R

    RaZZ3R Mu-43 Regular

    84
    Jun 19, 2011
    Italy
    Ovidiu
    The disappointment I had with the Panasonic G5, as with G3 and most of the G series after the second generation, is that they trow away perfectly good dials like the AF Mode/Function, and the Drive Mode. Although I do like that more buttons are Fn but that steal doesn't make up of the lost of dials witch are very usefull, logical and very well placed.

    I don't really know if it's me but almost never (maybe once a month) I hit by accident either the WB or ISO or any other button and so is with the dials, I never moved them by accident while I'm shooting or taking my camera out of the bag. And I'm seriously not careful with my camera, I'm too into my shooting that I do every day to be to concerned by this or that. And after a year and a half of using it I can atest to the bad quality of the rubber ?!? coating that's on the body that get scratch and damage very very easily and mine looks very worn off, and the plastic ring around the shutter button is dented. Of course this is not built like a tank, it's not as rugged and made to last like the semi-professional and the professional over the top budget cameras ... but what the hell i'll keep using it 'till it's dead or useless :biggrin:

    And I know that a bigger SLR would be more comfortable to hold and use because of it's size of the grip and the thumb rest and more leisure space for buttons witch tend to be bigger but coming from a previous DSLR (my first love: Pentax K200D) I got very very very annoyed with all the button smashing just to change the ISO and the metering and lost enough shots to change my camera to something more direct control ... that being the 66% reason why I got into Micro Four Thirds with Panasonic G2.
     
  8. addieleman

    addieleman Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 5, 2010
    The Netherlands
    Ad
    I've handled a G5 for 15 minutes or so. Missed some buttons and dials that the GH2 offers, didn't like that the wheel was moved halfway to the right side and found the camera generally too small for my hands, while the GH2 is still small but better IMHO.
     
  9. zapatista

    zapatista Mu-43 Top Veteran

    668
    Mar 19, 2012
    Denver, Colorado, USA
    Mike
    I totally agree with the OP, I think the GF3 is the best for control points and grip. :p
     
  10. addieleman

    addieleman Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 5, 2010
    The Netherlands
    Ad
    Like in, no need to look for them because there aren't any? :biggrin:
     
  11. IcemanYVR

    IcemanYVR Mu-43 Regular

    105
    Nov 16, 2012
    Vancouver, BC
    Allan
    I've handled all the cameras above, even used some of them, with the exception of the GH3. I disagree that the GH2 has the best ergonomics. Part of camera ergonomics is also how it feels in the hand, size, and UI. While the GH2 has all the switches and buttons, I think it looks "busy", and doesn't feel right in my hands. The OM-D is well documents how it's just not right for some, and perfect for others. For me, I like how the G5 feels in my hand. The controls are right there, or a click away. I want a camera that feels like an extension of my hand and my eye, and thats how I relate to the G5.

    Everyone is different, that's why I don't think you can flat out say one cameras ergonomics are better than another.
     
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  12. Armanius

    Armanius Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 23, 2010
    Houston
    Muttley
    I tend to agree with the OP. I liked the ergo on the GH2. Those dials were nice. I did wish for more customizable buttons though. My OMD has tons of customizable buttons. But for whatever reason, I can't assign metering to any of the five buttons!