The Lumix G5 was released less than a year ago, but Panasonic are already poised to release it’s successor, the Lumix G6, in just a few weeks. But will the new model warrant an upgrade from the G5, which is an exceptional camera in it’s own right?
The folks over at ePhotozine have just released their initial hands on review of the new Panasonic Lumix G6, and they are impressed with what the new camera has to offer.
Panasonic Lumix G6 Features
The Panasonic Lumix G6 has a number of improvements and updates over the Panasonic Lumix G5, including a new OLED electronic viewfinder, low-light AF, built in Wi-Fi and NFC (Near Field Communication – a touch to share feature that’s compatible with similarly equipped smartphones and tablets), a 3.5mm microphone input jack and a panoramic mode that was not available on the G5.
- 16.05 megapixel live MOS sensor, low-light AF
- 1.44million dot OLED EVF
- P/S/A/M manual video control, 50p/24p
- One-touch picture sharing and remote shooting
- Electronic shutter
- 3 inch Fully Articulated Touch screen, 1036K dots
- 7fps continuous shooting, 5fps with continuous AF
- Improved video 50p/24fps, stereo mic
- ISO160 – ISO25600
- New Venus engine – Area based noise reduction
- 19 Filter effects
- Sweep / Auto Panoramic feature – Filter Panoramic
- Focus peaking
- Mic socket
EPZ’s Initial Verdict
Our initial impressions of the Panasonic Lumix G6 are that it’s an impressive upgrade from the Panasonic Lumix G5 (which will continue to be available in the UK), and offers improved handling and design, with some useful and appealing upgrades, such as panoramic photos, Wi-Fi, new digital filters, built in mic socket, as well as OLED electronic viewfinder. Other upgrades that will appeal include updated video recording, as well as a mic socket, when combined with quick focus should provide excellent video quality.
The new 14-140mm zoom lens is impressive, with a brighter aperture, and more compact size, as well as extremely quick focus. We will be putting the Panasonic Lumix G6 through a full review when it is available, however even with a pre-production model we were impressed with the image quality and level of detail in photos. (Read full review on ePhotozine)
My 2 Cents
With the Lumix G6, Panasonic seem to have successfully added the features missing from the Lumix G5 while bringing the new camera to the forefront of technological advancement. I’m not surprised that Panasonic chose to launch the G6 so soon after the G5 (even though the latter is an outstanding camera that still has a lot of legs to it) because 2013 is the year of wifi, and soon any camera that is not so equipped will seem strangely out of place. But I’m happy to report that Panasonic weren’t satisfied to just add wifi capability to a G5 and then slap a new name on the body. The Lumix G6 also adds a 3.5mm external microphone input, enhanced video modes and control and an all new Venus Processing engine that are purported to give it better autofocus performance, even in low light. With the G6, Panasonic have served up a “mid level” hybrid camera that is aimed right at the DSLR market and it will give the competition a serious run for their money. No… It’s not a GH3, but it’s an attractive alternative for serious enthusiasts and indie filmmakers whose pockets are not deep enough to spring for a more expensive model, and with all the G6 has to offer, many people might think twice before going for a pricier camera in the first place.
In the end, the G5 is still an excellent camera (I have one and I love it!), but with it’s wifi and enhanced video capabilities, I feel that the G6 is a worthy upgrade and I’ll personally be adding one as soon as I can.
The Panasonic Lumix G6 will sell for $749 USD with a kit lens and will be available in black, white and silver. It’s scheduled to be released soon. If you’re looking for a great bargain, be on the lookout for some screaming deals on the Lumix G5 as well.