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Andrew Reid

Shooting with a 4K pocket camera - the exceptional Panasonic LX100

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No built-in ND filter and no filter thread on the lens. Hmm...

 

I'm also interested in how the overheating of the sensor is handled by the camera. I assume that it starts from 15 minutes and counts down to 0, but what happens if you do a 5 minute clip and then start a new recording? Does it then start from 10 minutes or 15 minutes? What kind of warning does it give when it starts to overheat?

 

I would be curious to know where this mis-conception about filter thread comes from. It definitely has a 43mm thread, but for some reason, a lot of people seem to think it doesn't. Is there some particular review that has an oversight?

 

I posted a question earlier, hoping someone knows:

 

Stupid question, but does the exposure dial in manual mode in reality adjust iso, or doesn't it do anything?

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It's not RX100 competitor as those are pocket cameras and fit in (even tight) pockets. This doesn't.  Totally different segment. 

 

I think it depends on your pockets! :)  Seriously though, I often wear pants with pretty wide pockets, and certainly fall through spring I mostly have a jacket, so for me, this is absolutely comparable to the Rx100. For others, not, but calling it a totally different segment is a stretch in my humble opinion.

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I would never put a camera into my pockets, that place is full of dust and you won't get it out a camera with fixed lens. You also don't want to stress the aligment between lens and sensor.

 

I would keep it in a soft pouch in there, the times I were to carry it like that, but I'm sure many people like to keep the camera in a pants pocket (even without protection for the camera).

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Andrew,

 

I love your enthusiasm and great information on this camera. Fantastic writeup! I'm getting so close to ordering an LX100.

 

One question: tell me how effective the image stabilization is in video mode. (and also for stills if you've tried it) With such a portable package, I'm hoping I could get decent results hand-held.

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wasnt the stabilisation 3 axis rather than 5 axis?

 

maybe someone can confirm also is 4k maximum 15 minute record time?

Yeah, the FZ1000 has 5-Axis hybrid OIS (mind you, not in 4K or high speed recording), the LX100 just Power OIS (not sure how many axis that is specifcally).

Yes, 4K recording starts countdown from 15mins.

 

I also would like to know if you can record 4k internally and monitor through hdmi or av out (interested in flying this camera on a multirotor)

No, you cannot use it like this unfortunately.

 

I think it is great that Panasonic is bringing this to the consumers, but why does it seem that a simple mic or headphone jack / controls cost an extra $1000+.  The seems like such universal commodity items to include on a camera that they should be available on the LX100. Its not even on the FZ1000. The only way to get it is on the GH4, but then you need to buy a lens as well.  i wish there was something in between.

They have to provide some kind of clear separation. Yeah, I know that it's fixed lens solution against an interchangeable lens system, but as someone that invested in a GH4 I would be pretty pissed if a camera would come out with almost the exact same features but put in a smaller and much more affordable package. So I guess that's one side of the story: cutting down on features as to protect the value of higher-end products. Everybody is crippling their lower priced products, it's just how things work at companies. And then on the other side of course it would bump productions costs and bulk of the camera a bit (it will take money and space to implement). And remember, the LX100 and FZ1000 aren't really targeting filmmakers and video enthusiasts per se. There probably only is a relatively small percentage of users actually finding use for these kind of features, although I have to say, some kind of optional connector unit with mic-in and headphone-out would be welcome... but again, that would narrow the gap between lines. I think it's the same reason why they won't give the LX100 a touchscreen. And who knows perhaps they could've given the GM5 4K video as well, but why would someone then still buy a LX100 or GH4?

 

Ordered!  Based on your enthusiasm, and the bang for the buck.

Pretty sure you'll love it! Enjoy!

 

LX100 has auto iso in M for video. So if it is not any more one of the Panasonics "manual mode principles" to not have anything auto in M why cant GH4 have it. Please FW update.

Actually, it hasn't. Because it has no dedicated videomode you can set auto-ISO, but as soon as you start rolling video this sticks with the initial ISO (unless that's what you meant, yeah it does pick that all by itself). Also, the feature completely disappears in 4K Photo mode.

 

I like the following on the LX100 vs my gh3:

-Focus Peaking

-Auto Iso in Manual mode (as Vesku mentioned)

-The dials fit me better with real dials for shutter, exposure, aperture. I would probably reconfigure the focus/control ring on the lens to do Iso mostly

-I like the fact that using shutter and aperture dials determines the mode it is in, rather than having a dedicated mode dial

 

Stupid question, but does the exposure dial in manual mode in reality adjust iso, or doesn't it do anything?

It doesn't do anything.

 

LX100 has a 43mm filter thread.

Yes, it does indeed! It also features the same accessory ring you'll find on the LX7.

CLCDmRJ.jpg

 

It's not RX100 competitor as those are pocket cameras and fit in (even tight) pockets. This doesn't.  Totally different segment. 

Personally I would never put a RX100M3 in my jeans pocket. Maybe it would fit, but it would be uncomfortable and awkward looking. A thin 5.0" smartphone and a filled wallet is what I would carry around maximum... a camera? Don't see it happening. Not even with the LX7, although maybe if you're wearing baggy cargo pants.

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I think it is great that Panasonic is bringing this to the consumers, but why does it seem that a simple mic or headphone jack / controls cost an extra $1000+.  The seems like such universal commodity items to include on a camera that they should be available on the LX100. Its not even on the FZ1000. The only way to get it is on the GH4, but then you need to buy a lens as well.  i wish there was something in between.

Yes, I understand the space issue. The FZ1000 has the space or maybe they are expecting every one to monitor audio from a connected device, but that is not clear.

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Great writeup Andrew! I just got my LX100 and I'm having fun testing it. 

But I must say, it definitely does NOT have auto ISO with manual ss and manual aperture in video mode. You can set the ISO to auto, but I can confirm that as soon as you hit record it switches to a fixed ISO. Too bad.. On the other hand, you can change ISO during a shot.

A big plus for stills shooters that I haven't seen mentioned is that flash sync goes all the way up to at least 1000th/sec. shutter speed, at least for the external flash I tried. The GX7 only goes up to a 250th I think. Of course an external flash looks ridiculously huge on this camera. The little supplied external flash is obviously an afterthought; it doesn't even tilt up.

One workaround for the lack of touchscreen focusing is to have the "direct focus area" on; that way you can pretty easily move the focus area around with the dial during a shot, if on a tripod. Use function buttons to change ISO and WB.

I've heard that in general the continuous focusing in video mode is better than with the GH4, but don't have a GH4 to compare. Andrew, have you noticed an improvement?

Also, the focusing is supposed to be faster in 4K photo mode as opposed to regular 4K. My testing on that so far is inconclusive. But if it is indeed faster I don't see why you'd ever want to use regular 4K, since with the photo mode you also get to use the bigger, better-placed "stills" shutter button.

On big concern I had was with focus hunting I saw on some sample videos. I'm going to be doing some thorough testing of that, since the camera not being able to calm down and stop hunting during a shot is a serious drawback for the run-and-gun and wedding work I do. With my initial testing it seems that the size of the focus area is important, with either too large or too small of an area causing more hunting. Looks like the pinpoint focusing mode hunts too much to be useful for video. Andrew, how much of an issue has focus hunting been for you?

I will report back when I've been able to do more thorough testing.

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Cinegain, thanks for taking the time to answer everyone's questions! :)

 

Yeah, the FZ1000 has 5-Axis hybrid OIS (mind you, not in 4K or high speed recording), the LX100 just Power OIS (not sure how many axis that is specifcally).

Yes, 4K recording starts countdown from 15mins.

 

No, you cannot use it like this unfortunately.

 

They have to provide some kind of clear separation. Yeah, I know that it's fixed lens solution against an interchangeable lens system, but as someone that invested in a GH4 I would be pretty pissed if a camera would come out with almost the exact same features but put in a smaller and much more affordable package. So I guess that's one side of the story: cutting down on features as to protect the value of higher-end products. Everybody is crippling their lower priced products, it's just how things work at companies. And then on the other side of course it would bump productions costs and bulk of the camera a bit (it will take money and space to implement). And remember, the LX100 and FZ1000 aren't really targeting filmmakers and video enthusiasts per se. There probably only is a relatively small percentage of users actually finding use for these kind of features, although I have to say, some kind of optional connector unit with mic-in and headphone-out would be welcome... but again, that would narrow the gap between lines. I think it's the same reason why they won't give the LX100 a touchscreen. And who knows perhaps they could've given the GM5 4K video as well, but why would someone then still buy a LX100 or GH4?

 

Pretty sure you'll love it! Enjoy!

 

Actually, it hasn't. Because it has no dedicated videomode you can set auto-ISO, but as soon as you start rolling video this sticks with the initial ISO (unless that's what you meant, yeah it does pick that all by itself). Also, the feature completely disappears in 4K Photo mode.

 

It doesn't do anything.

 

Yes, it does indeed! It also features the same accessory ring you'll find on the LX7.

 

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LX100 has auto iso in M for video. So if it is not any more one of the Panasonics "manual mode principles" to not have anything auto in M why cant GH4 have it. Please FW update.

Andrews review: "...You can have auto-ISO with everything else set to manual which is good though....."

----------------------------

Sorry, I dont have LX100 and it seems to not have that feature . I wonder why is it so hard to program that very useful feature? Is it still a principle?

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I have an omd em5 with 7.5 Samyang, 12-40mm Olympus, 17.5mm Nokton, and 40-150 mm Olympus.

Mainly use camera for family stills and video. Love the weather sealing and image stabilized videos with kids as it comes in handy sometimes.

Question is should I sell everything, start fresh, and just get the Lx100?

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Nice review Andrew. And very timely. How practical are the retro aperture/shutter speed dials?  For example, let's say I want to alternate between shooting video in shutter priority (at 1/50s) and shooting stills in aperture priority, do I need to constantly rotate the aperture and shutter dials to effect these settings, or can I simply program these settings into custom memory?

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As some have observed, yeah Auto ISO is only for stills mode, when you start recording video it goes off manual ISO only.

 

The way around this is to set the camera to iA mode and shoot in full auto, then the exposure will correct during a recording if the light level changes. I don't recommend shooting video this way because it looks rubbish, but some might find it useful for certain shots.

 

M mode is when the shutter and aperture are set manually. A big M appears in the top left of the screen.

A mode is when the shutter speed is set to auto but aperture is selected on the lens ring.

 

S mode is when the shutter is set on a manual setting and aperture is set to auto on the lens ring.

 

P mode is when both shutter and aperture are on their auto setting.

 

See... who needs mode dials anyway!?

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To imagine how many Micro Four Thirds primes you're getting in with the deal, here's what the aperture does throughout the range :)

 

11mm - F1.7 (24mm equiv. taking into account 2.2x crop)

16mm - F2.3 (35mm)

22mm - F2.7 (50mm)

34mm - F2.8 (75mm)

 

Not bad for $899, though I am sure the LX200 will end up with an OLED EVF and F2.0 at a 50mm long end (110mm).

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