Panasonic Lumix GX7 Compact Digital Camera

After the GX1 of Panasonic’s Lumix series, it would be a good question if all were surprised with the grand entrance of Panasonic Lumix GX7 (now where are the rest of the models in between?). The GX7 is said to be the company’s very first flagship for micro four-thirds cameras, and would even fit as the best camera of the company as to this date. But in this case, the remodeling took a serious change into almost every aspect of the camera, making its predecessor look so darn old. At a price no less than $1,500, the Panasonic Lumix GX7 should better be fitting to its crown.

Starting with the design, the Panasonic Lumix GX7 boasts a magnesium body with a highly reliable rubber matte wrapping. Available in both silver and in pure black, the GX7 is a rather more compact mirrorless camera, but this does not mean it can now be of the same size as those point-and-shooters. In fact, in its weight and size of 402 grams at 4.83×2.78×2.15 inches, it is compact on its own, more if you realize that such a compact system camera boasts of a tilting electronic (live) viewfinder and a tilting touch-enabled LCD.

The Panasonic Lumix GX7 sports what was said to be a new sensor compared to that of its predecessor. The new Digital Live MOS Sensor at 16MP is also paired with a new processing engine known by the company as the Venus Engine. Both of these are said to be too better for delivering speed and image quality, and this is a manifest in the specs sheet detailing a shutter speed from 60minutes to 1/8000 of a second. The ISO, which sadly does not start with ISO 100 but 200 is also ranging up to ISO 25600, and the burst shooting rate clocks at 5fps and 4.2fps when the AF-tracking is on.

The front camera features almost the same aspects, except that the grip, which is so friendly to one hand, is also properly textured for a more secure grip with the right depth. The top surface of the camera comes with the hotshoe that is covered with a plate, the live viewfinder that sits at 90-degree angle and is ready to be tilted upwards, the pop-up flash that you can control intensity and even angle (for softer or bounced shots, for example), the shutter button surrounded by control ring, the mode dial with a power lever at the back, and the direct video record button. The main control interface aside from the said touch-screen and the EVF has also gone a serious revamp, but despite the narrower thumb rest, we get another control ring, the d-pad with several buttons, few Fn buttons, the flash trigger, the LVF switch, the lever for switching between automatic and manual focus, and the AF/AE lock.

The Panasonic Lumix GX7 also boasts of a light-speed AF, which on my preliminary tests is but truly deserving for its name. It’s pretty fun to get your focus more because of the touch interface, and aside from this, you also get other aids like focus peaking (the camera prefers contrast AF), pinpoint focusing (wherein you double tap an area point for zooming in closer), and of course, by selecting from the 23 area points. The GX7 of course comes with face detection, AF tracking, manual focusing, and 1-area focusing.

The viewfinder of the Panasonic Lumix GX7 guarantees an almost-perfect 100% field of view and boasts of a more reliable color management using Adobe RGB. The LCD itself is so vivid and bright, and is even so clear at 2.8million dots (2,764,800 dots). Luckily, aside from tilting, you also get the eye proximity sensor that automatically shuts off the main LCD for viewing, and you can also adjust the diopter that is also available beneath the mechanism. And if you’d ask, yes, you can also select the area point via the touch-screen even when you’re using the LVF for framing.

The LCD measures 3 inches, and has 1040k dots for its resolution. The screen is very responsive, but can be overly responsive that you may tick some controls even when you did not put the tip of your finger on it. Luckily also, the menu interface also gets a refresh, and though it looks easier, I would still prefer the interface offered by Olympus on their most leading cameras. The GX7 boasts of up to 9 customizable Fn buttons, the functions 5 to 9 are virtual since they are buttons on the screen rather than physical buttons. A Q-menu button is also ready to help you access the most basic or important controls.

Shooting using the Panasonic Lumix GX7 is a breeze, and thanks to its in-body image stabilization, you can also use a wide range of compatible lenses even from third-party providers. Image quality is superb, the colors get better saturation compared to that of the predecessor, there’s not any evident chromatic aberration and distortion, highlights are not blown, shadows are kept neat, and the noise is greatly suppressed without looking artificial. ISO level of up to 5000 is highly usable, but when you’re into a 100% crop, you can really see some color noise. Under low light, the camera with its sensor and processor promises reliable focus even when the darkness level equates to -4 EV, and this is true according to my test.

Lastly, the Panasonic Lumix GX7 records videos at 1080p50 (or 60fps depending on region), and for images, it records both RAW and JPEG formats. Other specs you’d love to hear about the GX7 of Panasonic are: Wi-Fi and NFC capability, up to 24 scene modes for stills, up to almost 40 functions for customizing Fn keys, up to 22 creative modes, and a slightly poor battery life of about 300 images.

The Panasonic Lumix GX7 delivers the quality and performance it all promises all too well for its price, and the full range of manual controls and capabilities mean that this is more than simply a compact camera and is good even for professional shots.

Panasonic Lumix GX7 Compact Digital Camera Price in the Philippines: Approximately Php 67,000.00

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