Panasonic Lumix GM1 Compact Digital Camera

Panasonic is among the best companies—and even the first ones—to introduce the micro four-thirds system cameras into the market. Being proud to their line of these compact system cameras, the company is hereby releasing another model in the Lumix line, named GM1. The GM1 may or may not be the newest idea per se, but what makes it so particular and unique is its similar-to-compact looks and form. The price can be a bit hefty at around $1000, but where do the entire price go?

Starting with the design, the Panasonic Lumix GM1 really looks like a point-and-shoot compact camera from afar, and a little bigger and hence thicker of that type when you are near it. The UK company says that it will be available in four colors namely a pure black, a silver one with black wrap, a white version, and an unusual ‘classic orange’ color. The design is almost reminiscent of the Lumix GX7, which is not that far from the line, except that this is, again, more like a point-and-shoot camera.

The Panasonic Lumix GM1 measures 3.88 x 2.16 x 1.20 inches, which is more or less pocket-friendly. Our black-version package of today comes with a 12-32mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens, which is pretty decent but seemed limited in application to other Panasonic cameras. Moving forward, the GM1 is also light on its own at around 0.60lbs, making it handy enough at least theoretically to many. However, on my experience, the magnesium alloy body that looks more like a brushed metal finish plus the faux leather wrapping feel slippery and scary, though I should also admit that holding it is very classy and stylish as well.

Being a mirrorless camera, the Panasonic Lumix GM1 is actually almost similar to the mentioned GX7, well, at least in some lots of ways. For its innovative size and build, you still get a 16Mp Live MOS sensor, and there’s the Venus engine to give the device a real good pump in performance. The sensor is actually pro-friendly, with a notable ISO output of up to 25600, and with capabilities of an electronic shutter at up to 1/16,000 of a second. That’s pretty darn powerful actually for its size, more if you also learn that the same camera offers a decent 5fps burst shooting and impressive ‘light-speed’ contrast-detection AF system.

The controls and the interface of the Panasonic Lumix GM1 is fairly tempting for amateur photographers, mainly because such controls look overly simplified except the full-range mode dial at the top. Aside from the dial, the top surface also offers the switch for focus modes, an Fn1 button, the power trigger, stereo speaker holes, a vertically-oriented pop-up flash, and of course, the shutter button.  The back panel which is the main interface offers the D-pad with a rotating wheel for easier navigation, a slightly bordered video direct button, playback button, q-menu button, delete and display buttons, and another leather-ish thumb rest. Of course, I won’t be missing the touch-enabled TFT LCD, which has a sweet resolution of 1,036k-dots.

Outside the obvious, we also got a Wi-Fi that can work with an Android or iOS device for remote shutter and wireless upload, but not NFC and GPS. We actually hope the LCD is tilting—a feature which is already a word of mouth these days, but this does not really matter at all, unless you are looking for a viewfinder. To still maintain the slim form factor, we also do not expect a hotshoe here, but adding one won’t really be a prick on people’s experience, I think. Lenses are also a bit limited for now, and the color options can widely vary from one country to another. Battery is also a bit short at a rate of only a little more than 200 images, and how short it will be if you continually use the Wi-Fi feature.

On image quality, the Panasonic Lumix GM1 is capable of delivering excellent performance and juice all summing up to good photo quality. Capable of both RAW and JPEG, images look clean and the noise even in ISO 3200 are tidied well and naturally. The promise—or the rumor—of the light-speed AF is actually impressive, as I tried it on a scene -4EV in brightness. Burst shooting can be pretty short, something that disappointed me a bit. Colors look natural and details look neat, but not really sharp for you to use it as a replacement to APS-C sensors. Movie recording at 1080p50i is pretty decent with autofocus enabled, but we would wish it also came with a progressive version rather than the interlaced, which isn’t impossible for its processing power.

The Panasonic Lumix GM1’s main feature is the slimmer and simpler body, but outside that, you actually have another GX7 at hand. All these said, I would like to opine that the GM1 can be expensive for its class, but if you prefer buying the experience more than the gadget itself, the GM1 can really be summated for you.

Panasonic Lumix GM1 Compact Digital Camera Price in the Philippines: Approximately Php 45,000.00

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