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The LX100's EVF is rather disappointing...

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by LowriderS10, Oct 12, 2014.

  1. LowriderS10

    LowriderS10 Monkey with a camera.

    May 19, 2013
    So I was in Tokyo earlier today (I just love saying that!) and popped into a camera store and played with the LX100. On the whole, it feels like a good camera, and the specs certainly look impressive.

    HOWEVER...I'm sure most of us are getting excited about this camera because of the EVF...and I hate to say it, but I was very disappointed in it. I left behind a world of massive, bright viewfinders (my last three DSLRs were a the 1D Mark III, 5D Classic and 5D Mark II from Canon), and never once felt that my OM-D's EVF is lacking, so I'm not biased at all.

    But the LX100's is just *TINY*. With the OM-D I keep forgetting that I'm looking at a little screen, it's that good. (I've also shot with other EVFs, which I've liked less than the OM-D's, but size was never an issue). But with the LX100, it was painfully obvious that I was looking at a little miniature LCD. It felt VERY artificial and I felt like I was looking into a massive black square with a little picture off in the corner. I felt like I had to really concentrate to compose pictures because I was looking at such a small representation of it. Now, I realize that the form factor has its limitations, but I'm generally of the mind that if you're going to do something, do it right, especially when it's a $900 compact camera (for that much money it better do everything right, especially one of its main selling points).

    All I have to say is that I was very excited about this camera before I handled it, but now I have absolutely no desire to buy it.

    Anyways...long story short, if you're thinking of buying it (and planning on making extensive use of the EVF), I would suggest not preordering it, but waiting until you can handle one and see for yourself, or at least waiting 'till the user reviews start coming in. I know that I would be VERY disappointed if I shelled out that kind of money for a compact, and looked through that EVF for the first time.
    • Like Like x 3
  2. fortwodriver

    fortwodriver Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Nov 15, 2013
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    I wonder if having such a small EVF view makes it a good candidate for a magnifying diopter to be added on to it without sacrificing corner visibility?
  3. slau

    slau Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Jan 26, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    I was playing with the LX100 in the Calgary Camera Store, and compared it side-by-side with the GH4, GX7 and GM1. I was not disappointed about the EVF of the LX100. May be my expectation is a bit different for a serious walk-around fixed lens camera. The focusing of the LX100 was very good, even from shooting inside the relatively dark store.

    Even I still use 645D, Canon 1 series and GH1/2/3 bodies, I can appreciate Panasonic packing a nice EVF in a small package like the LX100. I like the LX100 but I doubt that I will be buying it. It makes more sense for ME to go to the GX7 as I already own most of the exciting M4/3 lenses. I guess that we just have to look at a small camera like the LX100 differently from 'full' size cameras. Just my 2 cents.
    • Like Like x 4
  4. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 5, 2013
    San Diego
    Doug Green
    How would you say the EVF of the LX100 compares specifically to the EVFs of the GH4 and GX7?
  5. Delb0y

    Delb0y Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 31, 2014
    I shall look forward to other comments and also trying an LX100 myself. On paper, the LX does appeal (as does the GX7) but the EVF is important to me and as I get older and my eyesight gets worse I think I shall want bigger rather than smaller VFs. LowRider's description of the LX100 EVF sounds just like my experience of the GX7. Not a show-stopper, but a serious consideration. I wonder when they'll land in the UK?

  6. Talanis

    Talanis Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 15, 2012
    Sherbrooke, Canada
    Eric Cote
    From what I read, the EVF is the same in the LX100 and GX7. I own a GX7 and even though the VF is not as good as the one on the GH4, I like it.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Good question, as I find the EVF in the GX7 to be less than I had hoped for, but it is still plenty useable. If the EVF in the LX100 and GM5 are comparable to the EVF in the GX7, I'll be ok with that.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Halaking

    Halaking Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 17, 2012
    Los Angeles
    GM5 only has 1,166k res EVF, Viewfinder Magnification is 0.92, , is not like LX100 has 2,764k EVF, I can't find the Viewfinder Magnification information for the LX100.

    How is the Viewfinder Magnification size difference between EM5 and LX100?
  9. pellicle

    pellicle Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Feb 10, 2010
    Killarney, OzTrailEYa
    Unlike optical VF magnification of EVF just shows the same number of pixels but magnified. So if your the kind to complain that you can notice pixels in the EVF they'll stick out like prawns eyes with a magnification.

    Try using even a mild magnifying glass on your TV to get an idea.
  10. Livnius

    Livnius Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jul 7, 2011
    Melbourne. Australia
    The LX100 has the same EVF as that of the GX7 so I think it's probably safe to say that the LX100 has the best built in EVF of any fixed lens compact going around. It'll be many moons before such a small fixed lens compact has an EVF anything like the size and quality of the VF4, let alone DSLR OVF quality. Panasonic did its customers a solid by building the GX7 EVF into this camera rather than not including one at all and making its customers buy one of those hideously bulbous detachable warts.
    • Like Like x 6
  11. slau

    slau Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Jan 26, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Yes, the GX7 definitely has a better EVF than the LX100. How much better? I just cannot remember but it is not bad enough to turn me off. I always use EVF for all my still photography and I found that the EVF of the LX100 is 'good enough for me' for a walk-around camera.
    • Like Like x 1
  12. Livnius

    Livnius Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jul 7, 2011
    Melbourne. Australia
    That's interesting....all the reports I've read say its the same evf as the GX7 evf...perhaps even better though as it has a faster refresh rate.
  13. LowriderS10

    LowriderS10 Monkey with a camera.

    May 19, 2013
    If it is indeed the GX7 EVF then I'm at a loss for words (because I do like the GX7's). Can some sort of settings explain it? Even if the LCD unit is the same, the lens elements between it and your eyes may be different, thus leading to a different experience? Faulty copy at the shop? I really don't get it, but it was shocking how uncomfortable that camera was to use as far as the EVF went. The rest of the camera felt good, though.
  14. NoTan2

    NoTan2 Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    Mar 16, 2014
    Newcastle NSW Australia
    I almost didn't buy an E-M5 because of that. The EVF on the display model in the store was terrible. It was the first OMD that I'd ever touched so I wasn't sure what to expect from the viewfinder but the garish, posterised colours made me hand it back to the salesman with a "No Thanks". He asked what was the problem, then held it up to his eye and said that there was clearly something amiss. Fortunately (for both of us), it only took him a couple of minutes to work out that someone had left an Art Filter turned on.
    • Like Like x 1
  15. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China
    Maybe it's like the one in the FZ200?

    I've never handled an LX100 but after reading the specs and have tried the FZ series, I can tell that Panasonic is definitely limiting these fixed lens cameras so that they can't compete m43. lack of touchscreen, slow AF...
    • Like Like x 1
  16. LowriderS10

    LowriderS10 Monkey with a camera.

    May 19, 2013
    Unfortunately it'll likely be sometime in mid-2016 by the time Korea gets one of these on a shelf (if at all, M4/3 isn't well supported in stores here), but I'm going to have to go back and see if different copies are better.

    I'm HOPING that something was amiss with the one I played with, because with that one when I looked through the VF I felt like I was looking at a big vast empty space with a little picture off in the corner. I finally understood what people talked about when they said "big viewfinder" when discussing cameras.
  17. LowriderS10

    LowriderS10 Monkey with a camera.

    May 19, 2013
    A friend of mine has a Canon SX40 (I think...anyways, one of the bridge cameras) and the EVF in the LX100 felt EXACTLY like the EVF in his SX40. Good, but small. I was always aware that it's a little screen, and it just took away from the joy of the experience. It's like watching a movie where you're painfully aware that the alien is just a dude with a rubber mask. :p  That, and it made it much harder to see what I was shooting than on my E-M5.
  18. val

    val Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 19, 2013
    16:9 aspect ratio for 4:3 stills -_- it's not exactly a deal breaker but when you use big EVFs like the A7 and X-T1 which they are the same aspect ratio as the photos, it's definitely noticeable....yeah you can shoot 16:9 but I rather shoot at the aspect ratio that gives me the highest MP

    I love my GX7, don't get me wrong, it's just a design choice that I wish they would not continue.

    I was actually thinking why I use Sony, Fujifilm and Olympus EVFs more than I do on my GX7 and yeah that's the reason.
  19. sgreszcz

    sgreszcz Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 7, 2012
    It may be hideous, but after moving to the ep5 plus vf4 from the em5, it is hard to look through anything else.

    I like the fact that the vf4 is removable (and tilt able!) so I choose I use it only under bright outside conditions or when I want critical manual focus when shooting video.

    That being said, I'm going to give the lx100 a try, to possibly see if it can replace an ep5 and a couple of primes/zooms and video shooting duty.

    I think it is a bit weak that they didn't go all out and add the touch/tilt LCD screen.
  20. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    Where does the "EVF same as GX7" info come from?
    I was surprised at reading that and Lowrider's report would suggest otherwise, because he would be able to tell the difference ... and he has just commented on that.

    I think the GX7's EVF is good and certainly doesn't give me the impression of being too small ...

    My money's on the LX100 EVF being demonstrably different.
    Early days I guess ...
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