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Upgrade GF1 to G3 or G5

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by Dangermouse1968, Jan 18, 2013.

  1. Dangermouse1968

    Dangermouse1968 Mu-43 Regular

    May 26, 2011

    I'd like to hear especially from people who have owned both a G3 and a G5.

    I'm going to finally upgrade from my lovely GF1. I always thought it was naturally going to be the GX1 but recently I've found myself dreaming of an EVF and a swivel screen so it's a G3 or G5.

    There is a significant price difference of about £200 based on what I've have seen.

    Is it worth it? I understand IQ is similar between the two?

    Specifically, over the xmas / NY holidays I've been frusttrated by the number of out of focus people shots I've has from my oly 45 set at f1.8. Presumably something with faster AF would reduce these near misses?


  2. elavon

    elavon Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 1, 2012
    Tel Aviv Israel
    This are the difference copied from DPreview

    16MP 'digital' Live MOS sensor (vs analog)
    Maximum ISO of 12,800 (vs 6400)
    6 frames per second burst shooting (vs 4 fps)
    1080/60p AVCHD and 1080/30p video recording (vs 1080/60i)
    MP4 video recording option (vs AVCHD and 720p MJPG only)
    3 inch 920,000 dot LCD screen (vs 460,000 dots)
    Eye-sensor below the EVF
    Function lever
    Touchpad-AF control
    Aluminium front plate (vs plastic)
    Position of the shutter button
    Redesigned rubber hand grip and four-way controller
    Improved battery life (320 shots vs 270)
    14 filter options in Creative Control Mode (vs 5)
    Not in the list Electronic silent shutter.

    Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5 Hands-on Preview: Digital Photography Review

    I have marked the significant for me in bold letters.

    For me the better grip, EVF sensor and electronic shutter are the reasons i chose the G5 over the G3.
    I had a camera with EVF sensor and it was cumbersome to use the EVF.
  3. hkpzee

    hkpzee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 5, 2011
    Hong Kong
    Are Olympus cameras on your radar screen? Olympus is expected to announce a new PEN, possibly with a built-in EVF, by the end of this month. With IBIS, it might be a better match with your 45/1.8.

    Otherwise, a GX1 replacement might be coming out soon. I think it would be worthwhile to wait a little bit to see what's on the offer before making the jump.

    I do not own either the G3 or G5, but have handled both at camera shops before. To me, the major differences between the two are the electronic shutter and ergonomics. AF on the G5 seems to be a tad faster, too. The G5 fits much better in the hand, but feels too rubbery and bulky for my liking. Sensor performance seems to be similar based on DXOmark tests.
  4. 00r101

    00r101 Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 21, 2012
    I've had both. They are both very very good. IQ is really close if you shoot raw. The G5 has considerably better OOC JPGs but you can adjust most of that in the G3 by making custom settings. If money is important the G3 will do about 95% as well as the G5. The G5 ergonomics are better. The only reason to get the 3 over the 5 is price. But it is a big diff. The G5 cost double the price of the G3 here in the states.

    The video on the G5 should be better but I have not shot enough vids to really make a judgement.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. crsnydertx

    crsnydertx Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 31, 2010
    Houston, TX
    I moved from the GF1 up the Gn food chain: G2, then G3 (briefly), and now G5. G5 is a substantial upgrade for the reasons cited by 00r101.

    However, I also took advantage of one of the great deals before Christmas to land a GX1. Now I find myself grabbing the GX1 for casual shooting, reserving the G5 for planned photo sessions. If I were to give up one....not sure which it would be.

    Oh, and along the way I tried some Olympus models: E-PL2, E-P3, and E-PM1. Nothing wrong with them; I'm just more comfortable with Panny ergonomics and controls.
  6. xdayv

    xdayv Color Blind

    Aug 26, 2011
    Tacloban City, Philippines
    It seems that the G5's improvements over the G3 are incremental, although some of them are important like the eye-sensor and improved ergonomics. Not sure if I'll go for the G5 at this point of time...
  7. nublar

    nublar Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 22, 2013
    I got the G3 kit in November for $300 but found a deal @ Amazon for the G5 kit + Lumix 45-150mm for $470 so I jumped on that. If you subtract the value of the 45-150 ($170?), the kits are the same price.
  8. RichDesmond

    RichDesmond Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Nov 18, 2011
    I just did the same thing, have had a GF1 and wanted a camera with an EVF (mostly) and an articulating LCD. (As a complement to, not a replacement for the GF1)

    Everyone's priorities are different, so it's a very individual decision, but for me the G3 @ $250 was a no brainer over the G5. For my shooting the G5 has no significant advantage.
    • Like Like x 2
  9. simonz

    simonz Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 20, 2010
    New England
    G5 is a winner

    I did have a G3 when it was first released. I liked the IQ of stills but the ergonomics were not good. The G3 did take decent videos. I sold it within a couple of months because of ergonomic issues.

    Recently, I purchased a G5 and wow! This camera has it all. The grip feels natural. The buttons feel better and the UI feels much improved over the G3. The G5 is great at ISO 3200 with jpgs. Raw is even better. IQ seems better than the G3. I haven't tried video yet. I lent the G5 out to a non-photographer to shoot a wedding and set it on iAuto. The results were that nearly every shot was a keeper.

    The AWB seems very accurate with indoor shots. The G5 also has a silent electronic shutter that could be very useful in certain settings where a noisy shutter would be disturbing to the subjects. I also have a GH2 and for stills, the G5 does a better job at higher ISOs.

    The G5 is the camera that the G3 should have been.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. spatulaboy

    spatulaboy I'm not really here Subscribing Member

    Jul 13, 2011
    North Carolina
    I would 100% recommend the G5.
    • Like Like x 1
  11. InlawBiker

    InlawBiker Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 1, 2012
    Seattle, WA
    Do you expect to use it for a while? Then I would get the latest one - the G5. If you search for deals it's not very expensive and the price will only go lower.

    The G3 is a stellar deal, hard to beat for the image quality - probably about the same as the G5. I owned one for over a year, but the more I used it the less I loved it. Ergonomically it's fairly simple and you're expected to use the touch screen for most things. In time I grew to dislike the menu diving.

    I have used a GF1 and now I use a G2 since it has all the controls I like. The older sensor doesn't bother me, I use it almost always in good light. If the G5 is more like a G2 ergonomically then I would be all over that.

    To be honest I think the camera to get right now is the GH2. Perhaps when/if the GH3 really catches on, the price will drop a bit more.
    • Like Like x 1
  12. 43hk

    43hk Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 26, 2010
    I'm upgrading from a GF1 in the next 6 months, so currently considering a number of options on m43 gear. The GF1 will be passed down to gf.

    Having a history of GAS since my teens (motorcycles, bikes, cameras, hi fi, watches, computers, guitars and amps). My strategy now is purchase the best within budget, and keep for 3 years, by July 2013 the options will probably be GX2, GH3 and G6.

    So will go for.....

    1) G6 if it has a load of GH3 features.
    2) GX2 of it has built-in EVF.
    3) GH3 if the above don't quite cut it.
    4) Something by Olympus, if they bring out something amazing and non-retro.
    5) G5 (on discount) if the G6 sucks.

    While G3 and G5 are amazing cameras the G5 has the edge on handling, video and ISO. But with the current upgrade frenzy from Panasonic, Olympus et al, its worth waiting a bit longer as the G5 will be replaced soon.
  13. walshy

    walshy Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 28, 2010
    Its July dude? am sat ofn the fence to, with againg but great GF1..

    Here's to procrastinators :2thumbs:
  14. snkenai

    snkenai Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 5, 2010
    I had the G1, traded it to my daughter few months ago. Eventually got the G3. Did not like it (just felt wrong in the hand). Traded it to my daughter for the G1. Love the G1 in hand. Just wish it had the latest sensor, or even the G3 sensor. "In the hand", is one of the most important features, that makes it something I will keep and use.

    I have the E-p3 (also had the E-p1 and 2). I am very comfortable with the actual usability of the pens, and they just work for me, but I don't like the "in hand" feel. I am likely to move away from them eventually.

    How does the G5 ergonomics and controls, compare the the G1?
  15. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    I "upgraded" from GF1 to G3. While, in every technical measure, the G3 is FAR superior to the GF1, I have to say that it doesn't have the "magic" those "intangibles" that the GF1 has. I don't get emotional using it like I do (did) with the GF1.

    That said, I don't think I can own a camera that does not have a tilt/swivel LCD ever again.
  16. RichDesmond

    RichDesmond Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Nov 18, 2011
    Exactly how I feel. Objectively, the G3 is better in every way, but there's something about the GF1 that just feels right. I'm hoping the GX2 has the same sort of feel but with IBIS and focus peaking.
  17. xdayv

    xdayv Color Blind

    Aug 26, 2011
    Tacloban City, Philippines
    Yes, I miss my GF1.
  18. SuperY

    SuperY Mu-43 Rookie

    Jun 19, 2013
    I have both G3 and G5. My wife has GF1.
    I have quite small hands, hence G3 suits me quite
    well (but I still prefer a bit larger grip than G3's one),
    On handling, it is a little better than G5 (a bit too
    large for me, but still okay). I like OOC JPEG of G3
    better (less the color), due to its more "analog" felt
    than G5/OM-D. (It is like look movie on Plasma
    Screen vs LED/LCD).

    However, overall G5 is better in terms of features.
    Surely G6 is far better than G5 in terms of features.

    One feature that I like very much on G5 is the elec.
    level guage. I just hope that Pana could do it on G3
    via firmware upgrade (but I don't think they will do it.)
    Also the EVF in G5 is better too. I don't care much
    about LCD eventhough G5 has more resolution.
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