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Panasonic LX100 first impressions review and 4K footage


Andrew Reid

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For those who find video very lacking on small cameras especially the Fuji X100S and X100T, Panasonic now have a high end retro-styled compact with 4K video.

The sensor and EVF come from the GX7, which in turn is quite close to the GH4 in performance terms. We are talking a gigantic sensor here for a compact, larger even than the 1" sensor of the Sony RX100 M3. As well as a large sensor, the camera packs a large aperture Leica 24-75mm which opens to an impressive F1.7 at the wide end.

This adds a premium zoom lens to your small-camera-large-sensor arsenal whereas the X100T only has a fixed focal length prime.

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I don't need to download any 4K files to know that this thing is going to start floating around on quite a few 3-axis gimbals and multi-rotor copters ;-)

Great stuff! With stabillisation, fast speed, small size and 4K. SOLD!   I know there's no log mode unfortunately, but is there a contrast curve?

That footage is really quite impressive.

How much do you think you might miss a touchscreen or a tiltable screen?

 

You probably will but anyway, I hope you can cover ND filter solutions (from fixed ND filters to variable, step-up adapters, etc) for the LX100 because I think that most people using this for video will probably need one.

 

I wish someone could ask Panasonic if the ND filter omission was due to technical reasons or not. I think that tiltable screen and touch screen was probably to keep the price down, I wouldn't have minded a $999 price tag to have built-in ND filter, touch screen and tiltable screen but I do understand that a lot of people wouldn't need or like that extra $100 just for that. But as the 4K and some other video feats are part of the highlight of the camera and as the LX7 had ND filter, I kind of expected it to have, it would had made a lot of sense.

 

A bit disappointed but no deal breaker, looking forward for more reports on this camera.

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I wish someone could ask Panasonic if the ND filter omission was due to technical reasons or not. I think that tiltable screen and touch screen was probably to keep the price down, I wouldn't have minded a $999 price tag to have built-in ND filter, touch screen and tiltable screen but I do understand that a lot of people wouldn't need or like that extra $100 just for that. But as the 4K and some other video feats are part of the highlight of the camera and as the LX7 had ND filter, I kind of expected it to have, it would had made a lot of sense.

 

A bit disappointed but no deal breaker, looking forward for more reports on this camera.

 

The LX7 had a max shutter speed of 1/2000 at F1.4 so a 3 stop ND filter was integrated to improve the camera's ability to shoot wide open in strong lighting conditions.  The LX100 can shoot up to 1/16000 in electronic shutter mode.  This is the same exposure result as having a built-in 3 stop ND filter in front of a 1/2000 shutter (without the engineering challenge of covering a much larger sensor with a mechanical piece of glass).

 

For video work I'll carry a Hoya ProND 6 2/3 stop filter, spare battery and card in a small pouch.  Compared to lugging around my GH4 and 12-40mm lens, filters, etc. it will be nirvana!

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Shame about the highlights, though did look a bit over exposed.  Hopefully there will be profiles to help that as the footage even through vimeo is very clean and detailed.  THe stabilisation looks good and I couldn't notice any rolling shutter jelly.

 

Some questions I have:

 

Does It take 4k from a native crop?  I assume like the gh4 it does.  If so the lens becomes 27mm to 85mm equivalent.  Not perfect for wide angle but still pretty cool.

Does it have similar roling shutter to the GH4 when pushed or is it actually better like your vid sugests?

Does it have the cinelike profiles or profile adjustment?

How is the sound? (pretty relevant since it doesn't have a mic socket).

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Did you ask Panasonic about the other rumored camera? The one specced as follows...

 

 


- 1" sensor

- 24-90mm f/2.0-2.8 Leica lens
- 3% larger than the LX7
- Swivel touch screen with touch to focus and capture features
- Updated processing engine enhancing JPEG output
- built in EVF and no hotshoe (just like the Sony RX100m3).
- Automatic Lenscap

- Weather sealed (but unclear if they will market this due to warranty concerns)
- EVF resolution is 1.44 Million dot
- 5 axis Stabilization for stills and video
- built-in 3 stop ND filter
- 4K recording

 

Was that all made up or was there a truth to it? Because that was initially rumored to be the LX7 successor...

 

'Cause I have the LX7 now and I'm not quite sure what to replace it with. The GM5 seems nice, just throw on a 12-32mm, 14mm or 20mm and voilá, you're good to go... but if there would be something with a swivel (touch)screen, that would really be convenient. The GM5 doesn't offer 4K video like the other recent cameras (GH4, FZ1000 and LX100). At first I thought this was the case because maybe it would have the inherited sensor stabilization from the GX7 (this was rumored)... or that it was just a too small of a body... but there's no sensor stabilization and the LX100 with 43rd sensor manages to capture in 4K and is pretty small too. So I'd rather go for the LX100 now featurewise over the GM5. Though, if they would also release the LX8 with specifications mentioned above... then it would get difficult again. Surely the LX100 is immensly awesome... but a LX8 would really have its appeal too. But I guess the LX8 was nothing more than a bunch of rumors? Although I'm already pretty much sold on the LX100 to begin with. Everything about it really speaks to me, design, features, it's more or less everything you can wish for in a very solid and portable package. I love the fine detail in the shots you put up for our viewing pleasure. Thanks!

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