Panasonic GM1 - a tiny gem of a camera. - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 04-01-2014, 07:29 AM Thread Starter
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Default Panasonic GM1 - a tiny gem of a camera.

In my never ending quest to find the perfect hiking / climbing / skiing camera that takes interchangeable lenses, I've come across a tiny m43 (micro 4/3) camera that is incredibly small and beats on the Sony RX100II that I've used for the past year.

As good as the Sony is (and it's awesome), the GM1 can take any m43 lens ever made, and this is a lot of choice / flexibility! The kit lens is an excellent 12-32mm (24-64mm equiv.) which works for almost any landscape situation. I also have the tiny Panasonic 14mm (28mm) f/2.5, Olympus 45mm (90) f/1.8 and 40-150mm (80-300) lenses for options and better IQ when I need it.

Other lenses that would work on this tiny body are the Olympus 12mm (24) f/2, Olympus 60mm (120) f/2.8 Macro and the large Olympus 75-300mm (150-600) telephoto for wildlife shots.

I can carry the camera with the kit lens in the same sized padded shoulder case that I carried the RX100II in. One of the best features is the ability to simply touch the screen where I want to focus and then press the shutter. Very fast and very flexible. No more "focus and recompose" - much easier to take closeup shots of flowers etc. I'll post more as I use the gear this summer.

Vern Dewit
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 04-01-2014, 08:37 AM
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Very cool Vern. I like the fact that it's compatible with all the micro 4/3 lenses. Sounds like a winner.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 04-01-2014, 02:18 PM
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How small can cameras get nowadays? Looks like a good one especially for an interchangeable lens camera. I read it produces quite sharp images. You still got your Sony a7r? There was a firmware update not long ago.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 04-01-2014, 08:45 PM
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I got their Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 2 years ago for 299$ blow out special. It does OK. I asume this new smaller body and better features is worth it. I only have (2) 4/3 lenses, but would like to stick with this format.
Thanks for posting and please update
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 04-02-2014, 10:09 AM
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I have had the GF1 since it came out. I only use it with the pancake lens (20mm and 14mm) as they are the only lenses that make the GF1 "pocketable". I really like the image quality of the micro 3/4 but the autofocus on the GF1 is slow (cannot keep up with fast moving objects: kids and skiers in my case).

Vern, can you expand on the autofocus capabilities of the GM1?
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 04-02-2014, 10:51 AM
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I've had some hands on experience with this camera. Using m4/3 myself I actually find it too small. With anything other than liner gloves on it is going to be extremely fiddly.

It also looks absurd with most zoom lenses on it.

I like the package size of the GX7, with the flush EVF built in. I like the width and height of it, but it would be nicer if they could get the length, front to back, narrower.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 04-02-2014, 08:24 PM
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quote:Originally posted by runningclouds

I have had the GF1 since it came out. I only use it with the pancake lens (20mm and 14mm) as they are the only lenses that make the GF1 "pocketable". I really like the image quality of the micro 3/4 but the autofocus on the GF1 is slow (cannot keep up with fast moving objects: kids and skiers in my case).

Vern, can you expand on the autofocus capabilities of the GM1?
Have you worked with the sport setting or burst mode for these situations? In good light you should be able to snap a few decent frames very quickly.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 04-03-2014, 02:39 PM
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quote:Originally posted by Aqua Terra
Have you worked with the sport setting or burst mode for these situations? In good light you should be able to snap a few decent frames very quickly.
Yes, the burst mode is decent if shooting JPEGs and there is lots of light, unfortunately the camera often struggles in JPEG mode with blowout highlights and the autofocus seems slower than the burst mode. I get a fair share of out of focus or soft focus pictures. I also prefer to shoot RAW.

I have been alternating between the GF1 and Canon G16 for the last few months and the G16 is definitely faster.
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 04-03-2014, 02:42 PM
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by leimrod

I like the package size of the GX7, with the flush EVF built in. I like the width and height of it, but it would be nicer if they could get the length, front to back, narrower.
How is the autofocus on the GX7? It does look nice.
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 04-04-2014, 06:50 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by runningclouds

I have had the GF1 since it came out. I only use it with the pancake lens (20mm and 14mm) as they are the only lenses that make the GF1 "pocketable". I really like the image quality of the micro 3/4 but the autofocus on the GF1 is slow (cannot keep up with fast moving objects: kids and skiers in my case).

Vern, can you expand on the autofocus capabilities of the GM1?
The AF on the GM1 seems quicker than any other m43 camera I've used - and I've used a lot of them! Especially with those pancakes you have, it'll be awesome. That 14 will make it truly pocketable. Try it in the store, but there is no comparison to the GF1 - another camera I owned. The IQ is much improved too, especially at high ISO.
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post #11 of (permalink) Old 04-04-2014, 06:52 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by Aqua Terra

I got their Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 2 years ago for 299$ blow out special. It does OK. I asume this new smaller body and better features is worth it. I only have (2) 4/3 lenses, but would like to stick with this format.
Thanks for posting and please update
Oh yeah - this camera will do much faster AF, much better high ISO (which allows better low light shooting for sunrise / sunset etc) and much, MUCH better video. The only 'issue' will be the lack of a viewfinder, which too be honest doesn't affect much anymore. I used the GM1 on a recent set of downhill ski trips in bright weather and it worked just fine. http://verndewit.com/p558287329 for samples.
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post #12 of (permalink) Old 04-04-2014, 06:56 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by leimrod

I've had some hands on experience with this camera. Using m4/3 myself I actually find it too small. With anything other than liner gloves on it is going to be extremely fiddly.

It also looks absurd with most zoom lenses on it.

I like the package size of the GX7, with the flush EVF built in. I like the width and height of it, but it would be nicer if they could get the length, front to back, narrower.
Ahhh. The trick is the ridiculously expensive Panny grip! The grip actually makes a huge difference because it gives you an edge to grab onto. I'm sure Richard Franiec will also make a grip soon (Google him) that will be cheaper. Another benefit to the grip is that slightly larger lenses such as the 20mm, 25mm, 45mm, 60mm and 40-150mm fit a bit nicer around the tiny body. Large lenses like the 75-300 or 75mm are still huge on the body, but will work.
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post #13 of (permalink) Old 04-04-2014, 07:01 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by runningclouds
I have been alternating between the GF1 and Canon G16 for the last few months and the G16 is definitely faster.
I guarantee 100% that the GM1 is faster AF than the G16. It also has a pretty good burst rate. Lenses I would recommend (due to AF and size) with or without the grip include (double all focal lengths for full frame equiv. i.e. 12mm == 24mm FF);
  • Kit lens (12-32mm)
  • Oly 12mm f/2
  • Panny 15mm f/1.7
  • Oly 17mm f/1.8
  • Panny 20mm f/1.7
  • Panny 7-14mm f/4
  • Panny 14mm f/2.5
  • Oly 25mm f/1.8
  • Oly 45mm f/1.8
  • Oly 60mm f/2.8
  • Oly 40-150mm

There's also a rumor that Panasonic is coming out with a tiny 35-100mm (70-200) lens to match the small size of the GM1. I think this is going to start a whole new product line for the m43 standard - one that finally makes use of a smaller sensor by putting it in a smaller body.
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post #14 of (permalink) Old 04-04-2014, 07:07 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
quote:Originally posted by solo75

How small can cameras get nowadays? Looks like a good one especially for an interchangeable lens camera. I read it produces quite sharp images. You still got your Sony a7r? There was a firmware update not long ago.
I ended up selling my A7R. It's an amazing camera that will continue to evolve over the next 2-3 years at which time I'll probably get tempted again. There are a few reasons for getting rid of it for now including;
  • Lack of lenses - I got tired of using MF 'in the field'
  • Still not small enough (i.e. GM1 size!)
  • Expensive to outfit. A 50mm lens is $1000 compared to $399 for an Oly 25mm
  • I managed to sell it for close to my buying price so the 'rental' fee was low.
  • The files were simply too big for me. 70mb for each RAW - my Macbook Pro was slowed to a crawl!

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post #15 of (permalink) Old 04-15-2014, 07:49 AM Thread Starter
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I got some more small primes / zooms lately for use on the GM1 so I thought I'd share some pics for those who may be wondering about size etc.

First, here's a comparison with the first 4/3 camera I used, the E-420. The Oly E-M10 is in the middle:



Here's some comparisons with the Sony RX100II:



Now some shots of the GM1 with lenses that I think fit it quite well.

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