Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1

September 12, 2008 | Mark Goldstein | Digital Compact Cameras | 30 Comments | |

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1The Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 is the World’s first Micro Four Thirds camera. Using a mirror-less structure and an electronic viewfinder instead of a conventional optical viewfinder, the Panasonic G1 still has a 12.1-megapixel Live MOS, Four Thirds sensor, but is much smaller than a regular DSLR camera. Other standout features of the DMC-G1 include a 3-inch, 460K dot, free-angle LCD screen and high-resolution 1,440,000-dot equivalent Live View Finder, both of which provide a 100% field of view and Full-time Live View. The Panasonic G1 accepts not only Micro Four Thirds System interchangeable lenses, but also conventional Four Thirds System lenses when an optional adapter is mounted. The Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 will be available from November 1st for £599 / $799.

Panasonic Press Release

Panasonic is pleased to announce the brand-new LUMIX G Micro System.

World’s First Full-time Live View Digital Interchangeable Lens Camera Adopting New-Generation Micro Four Thirds System Standard DMC-G1 from LUMIX G Micro System

Panasonic today announced the release of the DMC-G1, an exciting new digital interchangeable lens camera that is based on the new Micro Four Thirds System Standard. Combining a downsized body and advanced camera features that realize the operational comfort even as easy as that of compact cameras, the super-mobile G1 shatters the old notion that all digital SLRs are bulky, heavy and hard to use. This, plus the superior picture quality made possible by a 4/3-type image sensor, draws a clear line between the new-generation Lumix G1 and all conventional digital SLR cameras.

With the G1, Panasonic has developed an entirely new-concept digital camera that takes even greater advantage of the compactness and light weight inherent in the Four Thirds System Standard. By increasing the number of electrical contacts between camera body and lens, Panasonic has also increased camera expandability and maximized the future potential of the G1, including compatibility with future features. In addition, the versatile G1 accepts not only Micro Four Thirds System interchangeable lenses, but also conventional Four Thirds System lenses (when an optional adapter is mounted). This means that users can continue to use Four Thirds lenses they already own.

The G1 is the world’s first camera to employ the new Micro Four Thirds System standard. Together with an innovative mirror-less structure that also dramatically downsizes the camera body, the LUMIX G Micro System achieves a dramatic portability and ease of use by an adoption of electronic Full-time Live View Finder instead of conventional optical viewfinder. Despite the G1’s ultra-compact design, it comes fully equipped with features that assure outstanding ease of use, made possible by the contrast AF system. The G1 also boasts iA (Intelligent Auto) mode, a feature that took the world by storm in Lumix digital compact cameras. iA mode brings together a full range of functions - led by AF Tracking , Face Detection, Intelligent ISO Control and Intelligent Exposure - that together let users take strikingly beautiful photos with maximum ease every time they shoot. The G1 breaks new ground in styling too, overturning SLR camera conventions by giving users a variety of body colours to choose from. For people who have been hesitant about moving up to an SLR camera, the G1 is a perfect fit. It is a small, sophisticated, easy-to-use camera that will greatly expand any user’s photographic capabilities.

The G1’s Live MOS sensor gives users the benefits of Full-time Live View both when viewing the Free-Angle LCD and when looking through the viewfinder. Other new conveniences made possible by the contrast AF include 1-area-focusing, AF Tracking, and a preview functions that show the photographer how changing the shutter speed (and other settings) will affect the photograph. The large 3.0-inch free-angle LCD, with its 100% field of view and sharp 460,000-dot resolution, lets the photographer check even fine details when composing an image or viewing a shot just taken.

Behind the G1’s exceptional image quality is a 4/3-type 12.1-megapixel Live MOS sensor that boasts a wide dynamic range and low power consumption, plus Panasonic’s new Venus Engine HD imaging processor, with its superb noise reduction performance and expandability represented by HDMI output capability. Because dust entering the body is a concern with all interchangeable lens cameras, Panasonic has equipped the G1 with a Supersonic Wave Filter as part of a Dust Reduction System designed to prevent dust and other foreign matter from adhering to the image sensor.

In addition to accepting Micro Four Thirds lenses, the G1 can be fitted with a mount adapter that allows the use of standard Four Thirds lenses. This greatly expands the assortment of lenses available to users. They can choose lenses from a variety of manufacturers and in a variety of combinations, for virtually unlimited photographic capabilities. A wide range of special accessories are available too. The G1 is also equipped with a mini HDMI output terminal for easy connection with other AV devices. With features like these, the G1 gives users a host of photographic and entertainment possibilities to explore. The stylish Lumix DMC-G1 is an entirely new kind of digital camera with an unprecedented feature set.

The G1 is ideal for people who have never before used an interchangeable lens camera, and for those who have tried one but didn’t find it comfortable. The easy-to-use G1 can open the door to a world of fun, beauty and unlimited creative possibilities.

Ultra compact Digital Interchangeable Lens Camera – Made Possible by the Micro Four Thirds System Standard
With the G1, Panasonic introduces an innovative mirror-less structure that dramatically downsizes the camera body. The G1 is far more compact than conventional SLR camera on the market, thanks in large part to the Micro Four Thirds System, a new standard for interchangeable lens cameras. This new system has made it possible to reduce the flange back distance (between the mount and the image sensor) to approx. 20 mm – half the 40 mm specified in the Four Thirds System. The outside diameter of the mount is also reduced, by about 6 mm. The Micro Four Thirds System makes it possible to downsize not only the camera body, but the lenses too - particularly wide-angle lenses and high-power zoom lenses – while maintaining the superior image quality characteristic of the 4/3 image sensor. The G1’s ground-breaking structural design forever dispels the notion that an interchangeable lens camera has to be big and heavy – a drawback that’s deterred many people from switching to an digital SLR. Even with its generous 3.0-inch LCD, the G1 is extremely compact – and there is absolutely no compromise in function or performance.

Another attractive feature that separates the G1 from conventional digital SLR cameras is the choice of body colours. While traditionalists can choose the standard black body, others will enjoy the appealing blue and red colours available. With its exceptional mobility and features, the G1 offers a new style of photography; with its design and colour selection, it offers a new sense of camera style.

Full-time Live View and Contrast AF
With the G1 users enjoy the advantages of Full-time Live View not only when viewing the LCD, but when using the electronic viewfinder too. The G1’s viewfinder system retains the outstanding viewability of an optical viewfinder and can also display information about camera settings that the user can see without taking his or her eye from the subject. This is one of the ways Full-time Live View uses digital technology to give the photographer useful new features and functions. In addition to a mirror-less structure, the G1 features a high-resolution 1,440,000-dot equivalent Live View Finder. A clever built-in eye sensor automatically switches on the viewfinder when the user looks into it, then switches it off and turns on the 3.0-inch high-resolution 460,000-dot LCD (which boasts a wide viewing angle) when the user looks away from the viewfinder. The 60-frames-per-second Live View is made possible by the Live MOS sensor, which takes signals directly from the image sensor and sends them continuously to the LCD, in real time. You can use either auto focus or manual focus while using the Full-time Live View.

Both the Live View Finder and LCD provide a 100% field of view. This allows the user, when composing a shot, to check the framing accurately from corner to corner.

The G1 introduces a new Contrast AF function that is not only accurate and easy to use, but also very fast. Users can choose from a wide range of AF modes, including multiple-area AF with up to 23 focus areas, 1-area AF with a selectable focus area, Face Detection, and AF Tracking. In the 1-area AF mode, the AF frame size can be changed by simply turning a dial. The G1 also has a Quick AF function that begins focusing as soon as the user aims the camera – no waiting for him or her to press the shutter button halfway. This provides a quicker focusing that can help capture the subject before the crucial moment passes. Continuous AF keeps the subject in focus at all times. With the G1’s many auto focus modes, there’s an option that’s just right for any shooting situation.

*Lenses that are not compatible with the contrast AF function can be used with manual focusing. There are some limitations to other functions when the lenses other than LUMIX G VARIO 14-45mm/F3.5-F5.6 ASPH./MEGA O.I.S. and LUMIX G VARIO 45-200mm/F4.0-F5.6/MEGA O.I.S.

High-resolution Live View Finder and Free-angle 3-inch 3:2 460,000-dot LCD
A large, clear, easy-to-see LCD, that rotates 180º horizontally and 270º vertically is upgraded both in size and resolution to be 3.0-inch with 460,000-dot high resolution to offer even more comfortable view for both monitoring when shooting and for playing back the results. Extraordinary 3:2 aspect of the LCD on DMC-G1 is familiar to those who are used to analog film cameras. The G1 is designed for easy viewing, no matter where your photographic pursuits take you. When the lighting around you changes, the LCD changes too. The Auto Power LCD function automatically boosts brightness by as much as 40%, depending on the shooting condition. The LCD monitor remains easy to see at all times. This helps make framing a shot with Full-time Live View even easier.

The DMC-G1’s Live View Finder has the large 1.4x (0.7x on 35mm equiv.) magnification and the 100% field of view as the optical viewfinders on high-end digital SLR cameras. This, plus the 1,440,000-dot equivalent resolution, makes it easy to shoot the exact image the camera sees. Surprisingly, when you look into the viewfinder, a sensor automatically turns the Live View Finder on and the LCD off. You enjoy smoother, easier shooting without having to switch the setting of display. In addition, customise the camera to fit your shooting preference by changing the display style or switching to a full-screen display. The user enjoys a seamless 60fps Live View both on the LCD and LVF. The G1’s Live View Finder, which is based on a field sequential system that uses RGB 3-independent sequential illumination to produce 180 fps for each of the three colours, gives the user a clear, natural and comfortable view when framing a shot. The LCD can swivel 180 degrees horizontally and 270 degrees vertically, giving the user the flexibility to take low-angle and high-angle shots easily and comfortably. The DMC-G1 also features the Quick Menu, so you can make a variety of settings without taking your eye from the Live View Finder.

Great Photography Is Not Only from Professional Photographers Anymore - Intelligent Auto Mode
When you don’t know which mode will give you the best shooting results, or when a sudden photo opportunity pops up and you don’t have time to make any settings, simply choose iA (Intelligent Auto) mode and let the camera do it all for you. This advanced mode includes MEGA O.I.S. to detect hand-shake, Intelligent ISO Control to detect subject movement, Face Detection to detect faces in the frame, Intelligent Scene Selector to detect scene conditions, Light Detection to detect the brightness level, and AF Tracking to continually track a moving subject and keep it in focus. These six functions work automatically and simultaneously in iA Mode to optimize your settings, making it easier than ever to take beautiful photos every time.

Shake Detection – MEGA O.I.S.(Optical Image Stabiliser)
MEGA O.I.S., implemented in the lens, compensates for the blurring caused by hand-shake. Even slight hand-shake movement is accurately detected by a sampling frequency of 4,000 times per second, and compensated to produce sharp, clear images. It also works for zoom shots and macro shots, which are especially susceptible to hand-shake, and lets you shoot in dimly lit rooms or evening illumination, without a flash, to preserve the mood.

Motion Detection – Intelligent ISO Control
The Intelligent ISO Control function detects subject movement and automatically adjusts the ISO setting and shutter speed to best suit the movement and light conditions. When it detects subject motion, it automatically raises the ISO setting and increases the shutter speed to prevent motion blur. On the other hand, when the subject is still and no movement is detected, it takes beautifully natural photos with a low ISO setting. Intelligent ISO Control gives you stunning images with ease because there is no need for complicated settings.

Light Detection – Intelligent Exposure
The Intelligent Exposure function increases the exposure only in under-exposed areas by detecting the brightness level part-by-part in the picture. If the background includes the sky, which tends to be easily washed out, the camera automatically adjusts the aperture and shutter speed to keep the setting slightly under-exposed to prevent wash-out while brightening the darkened area by increasing the ISO only in that area. If the background of an indoor portrait receives insufficient lighting from a flash and becomes dark, the ISO sensitivity is raised in only the low-lit area to make it brighter without causing graininess in the subject’s face. When Intelligent Exposure is turned on, the icon changes from white to yellow. In addition, you can adjust the effect in three levels in normal shooting mode— high, normal, and low.

Face Detection – Face Detection AF/AE
The Face Detection function detects faces and automatically optimises the focus and exposure settings. It prevents the blurry faces that happen when the camera focuses on something in front of or behind the subject, and keeps faces from appearing dark when shooting indoors or against the light source. It detects up to 15 faces at a time, making it extremely convenient for group photos. Once the camera detects a face, Face Tracking follows it even when the subject moves around. This makes it easy to capture the person’s face quickly if he or she is moving. It is also equipped with Digital Red-eye Correction. The camera takes care of the red-eye effect that often happens when shooting with a flash, to ensure attractive facial expression always.

Scene Detection - Intelligent Scene Selector
When the camera’s in iA (Intelligent Auto) Mode, the Intelligent Scene Selector automatically sets the Scene Mode to either Scenery, Portrait, Macro, Night Portrait or Night Scenery. The camera judges it from the various detection results such as focusing distance, inclusion of human face and brightness level of the circumstance. You are free from having to change the settings every time the scene changes when taking pictures with these most frequently used Scene Modes to get beautiful results even before you know it.

Subject Detection – AF Tracking
Simply focus on your subject, then press the shutter button to activate AF Tracking. Even when you remove your finger from the shutter button, the camera continues to automatically keep your moving subject in focus. This keeps the focus sharp and blur-free when shooting active children or pets, as well as when capturing sports scenes or subjects in a moving object. It minimizes the shutter time lag so you won’t miss those spur-of-the-moment shots, and helps to give you truly beautiful photos always.

The user can activate all of these useful, convenient shooting-assist functions by simply selecting iA mode. This makes the DMC-G1 the ultimate, super-versatile automatic camera for capturing clear, beautiful, mistake-free photos with ease despite its high quality image rendering capability as a system camera.

A Host of Creative Options
My Colour Mode is a special option that gives free rein to the user’s creativity. In My Colour mode you can freely adjust the colour, brightness and saturation parameters, while checking the Full-time Live View image to see how those adjustments affect the picture. This makes it easier and more fun to create interesting, expressive images. Adjust the settings that best suit the shooting conditions and your expressive intent, and then enjoy your own photography.

Furthermore, the DMC-G1 provides options of picture taste with the function called Film Mode. Each analog film has its characteristics such as with colour, contrast, gradation and which affects on the outcome of the picture, in other words, it is one of the ways of expression. With the DMC-G1, the Film Mode allows you to choose the one that takes the best advantage of the scene or the subject you take out of a total of nine film modes including Standard, Dynamic, Nature, Smooth, Nostalgic, Vibrant, Standard B/W, Dynamic B/W and Smooth B/W, with capability of fine adjustment of contrast, sharpness, saturation and noise reduction. Users can also shoot the same scene in 3 different films using the new Multi Film mode. All these settings can be confirmed before you take the picture and the result is always as you intended.

The Full-time Live View lets the users check the outcome image in advance after adjusting the shutter speed, aperture or white balance. The white balance can be adjusted in the area of two-axis of coordinates precisely.?And also the white balance bracket in 3 pictures either along with A(amber)-B(Blue) axis or G(Green)-M(Magenta) axis is now available for G1.

High Image Quality as an Interchangeable Lens System Camera
The 4/3-type 12.1-megapixel Live MOS sensor featured in the DMC-G1 offers the best of both worlds – the superior image quality of a CCD sensor, and the lower power consumption of a CMOS sensor. New technology that makes it possible to read 4 channels of data simultaneously also helps the G1 deliver 60 frames-per-second Full-time Live View images, while faithfully reproducing high-resolution images with fine detail and rich gradation.

For the image processing LSI, the new Venus Engine HD features exceptionally advanced signal processing capabilities. This sophisticated LSI separates chromatic noise from luminance noise and applies the optimal noise reduction to each, so you capture clear and beautiful images even when shooting at high ISO sensitivity levels. The Venus Engine HD also provides independent gradation control for each of the R, G and B colours, so even delicate colour nuances are reproduced faithfully. Linking smoothly with the Live MOS sensor, the Venus Engine HD records stunning high-resolution 12-megapixel images with exceptional accuracy. Signals containing a large amount of image data are sent from the Live MOS sensor to the high-resolution Live View Finder, resulting in the 1.44 million-dot equivalent sharp clear images at 60 fps. The Venus Engine HD also supports an extensive range of functions, including HDMI output.

If dust or other foreign matter gets inside the camera when you’re changing lenses, it could cling to the image sensor and show up as a spot in your photos. The Dust Reduction System in the LUMIX DMC-G1 helps eliminate this possibility by placing a supersonic wave filter in front of the Live MOS sensor. Vibrating around 50,000 times per second, the filter repels dust and other particles.

Superb Expandability for More Fun
The DMC-G1 and LUMIX G Micro System is compatible with any interchangeable lens that complies with the Four Thirds Standard.* This gives you access to the entire range of Four Thirds lenses. And a stream of new Micro Four Thirds lenses will be announced in the future, giving you a large, diverse line of high-performance lenses to add to your photographic toolbox. With the LUMIX G Micro System and the growing assortment of lenses becoming available, your expressive possibilities are unlimited. The DMC-G1 is a system camera with a wide variety of options to choose from to match your shooting situations and style.

External Flash: DMW-FL220(GN22)/ DMW-FL360(GN36)/DMW-FL500(GN50)
PL Filter: DMW-LPL52
ND Filter: DMW-LND52
MC Protector: DMW-LMC52
Mount Adapter: DMW-MA1
Battery Pack: DMW-BLB13
DC Cable: DMW-DCC3
Soft Case: DMW-CG1
Soft Bag: DMW-BAG1
Shoulder Strap (Stylish) DMW-SSTG1-A/C/R
Shoulder Strap (Woven?DMW-SSTG2-W
Shoulder Strap (Leather) DMW-SSTG3-T
Remote Shutter: DMW-RSL1
HDMI mini Cable: RP-CDHM15(1.5m), RP-CDHM30(3.0m)

*You need an adapter (available as an option) to use Four Thirds lenses. Lenses that are not compatible with the Contrast AF function can be used with manual focusing. There are also some limitations to other functions. For details, see the following customer support site: * Check the website of the Panasonic sales company in your country or region for details on the optional accessories that are available in your market.

High-Definition Networking
The G1 has an HDMI output terminal. When the G1 is connected to an HDMI-compatible TV via an HDMI mini cable (purchased separately), the user can easily enjoy a slideshow of photos taken with the G1. When the G1 is connected to a VIERA TV that has VIERA Link capability, the TV’s remote control unit can be used to run the slideshow.

Other Convenient Features
When using the G1 in manual focus mode, the frame will automatically enlarge by around 5x or 10x(magnification can be altered by the front dial) for easy viewing in the Live View Finder or high-resolution LCD with Manual Assist function. This lets the user frame the shot with greater ease and accuracy. The movable guide lines make it easy to check the horizontal and vertical positioning of the subject and scene, no matter how the shot is being composed.

The Quick Menu has further evolved as an interface in the G1. The newly enhanced menu screen makes it easier to use the G1’s advanced functions, while simply rotating the turn-and-push device (front dial) lets the user select and enter settings with a single finger, without having to look away from the viewfinder. Most settings can be made in this way. The new My Menu tab automatically stores the five most recently used menu items, for quick, easy retrieval. The custom setting function can also be used to register a shortcut for a frequently used function; the function can then be activated by pressing the Down button of the cursor key. The colour of the LCD information display screen can be changed in three colours. These features make the G1 easier to operate while also giving the user a way to customise his or her camera.

The LUMIX G Micro System will change the way you see – and enjoy – the digital interchangeable lens camera. It does so with a collection of features that put enormous photographic power in a palm-sized camera with interchangeable lens. The LUMIX G Micro System is a camera you’ll love from day one – giving you the freedom to express yourself, and changing the role that photography plays in your life. DSL Reinvented – from 1st November 2008.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1

Your Comments

30 Comments | Newest Oldest First | Post a Comment

#1 JH

Cant' help being a bit disappointed. The camera is small, but not dramatically, almost the same as Olympus E-420. And there is no video recording.

Also, it remains to be seen whether the new contrast detect autofocus system really works. A further disappointment is that the old 4/3 lenses won't have autofocus with this camera.

11:31 am - Friday, September 12, 2008

#2 Ian - Cambridge UK has an excellent preview. The indicatations are the G1 is shaping up to be a great camera moving the entire industry forward, particularly with the hi-res viewfinder. Movie-mode is a must for me though.

11:49 am - Friday, September 12, 2008

#3 observer

It's just marketing stuff. Being first in a new category (micro 4/3) sounds better than saying "here is an upgraded EVF camera". It's evolution, not revolution.

ad video capabilities: What would compel users to upgrade if they packed video in the first model in the line?

2:19 pm - Friday, September 12, 2008

#4 Antony Shephred

The design's a bit conservative, isn't it? Also I'd rather have image stabilisation in the camera, as I suspect that's making the lenses more bulky than they need to be.
Apart from that, pretty nifty, but I'll be waiting to see what Olympus come up with.

3:54 pm - Friday, September 12, 2008

#5 Mustafa Ajlan Abudak-Turkey

As far as from the preview from dp, I like the way Panasonic (and all the four thirds companies) hold. Their approach praise the minimalist fashion of high tech devices.( good marketing point) More compact more mobile more sophisticated more indiviualized. But still we have got time to get a real rangefinder which has DSLR capabilities and quality.It is suprising the big two do not show patticular interest on this issue.And the others rightfully find the path to compete them in the market by this way.This is nice thing but I think real solution will only come from masters.Good job Panasonic. I like this slogan '' Great Photography Is Not Only from Professional Photographers Anymore'' yes sounds little bit market fashion but revolution of digital photography makes this reality I think this kind of innovations are the steps forward its evolution..

11:22 pm - Friday, September 12, 2008

#6 Bernard Wheeler

Panasonic great for inovation, design is awful, why give a camera a pentaprism design, when it hasn't got one.I don't think it was design for europeans
I exspect, or I should say I hope that Olympus to come up with a modern design of the old Pen FT type camera.
As Frank Carson the comedian would say
It's a cracker

4:06 pm - Saturday, September 13, 2008

#7 Mustafa Ajlan Abudak-Turkey

Yeah I also agree with Mr.Bernard on the issue.The camera will be better in retro style fit and finish.(I like Canon G9-Lumix L1 and E300 Olympus they must be rangefinder size to fit the concept I mentioned before but ''real'' viewfinder must cover at least % 90)Even tough all the lacks G1 has, it is a good start for mini-four thirds. Hopefully Olympus will lean from reviews from the market and will take it further..

4:26 pm - Saturday, September 13, 2008

#8 Pentaprism Rocks

"Using a mirror-less structure and an electronic viewfinder (...)"

They killed any hope for the camera by using an EVF. It really makes quality crap

10:12 pm - Saturday, September 13, 2008

#9 Pentaprism Rocks

"The camera will be better in retro style fit"
@Mr Mustafa. Judging a camera from the looks rather than its ergonomics or features isn't a good idea.

"rangefinder which has DSLR capabilities and quality"

There's some brlliant quality rangefinders out there. Expensivem, but there are. DSLR isn't synonym of quality. It's only about system.

And Panasonic so far has been synonym of awful image quality. I dont' have much hopes on this one either.

10:18 pm - Saturday, September 13, 2008

#10 Mustafa Ajlan Abudak-Turkey

Yes you are right.But I just stated my wish that is all.. retro style may well suits this concept and has elegant fit&finish;according to my taste.You will not share it.

''There's some brlliant quality rangefinders out there. Expensivem''

You mean Leicas I think.I do not agree with you they are excellent in terms of lenses (tack-sharp natural color) not at all final output. Also I do not like the iso-fine detail performance of any leica cause they collabare with panasonic about photo engine.(turn to analog signals into digital something like art and they do not get the what lens takes) That is what you said;

''And Panasonic so far has been synonym of awful image quality''

Yeah I do not much appreciate their outputs but it does not mean I will no more..First of all they use Leica lens they is big legacy they will learn to benefit as time goes by hopefully.Let us see the final production samples.

10:31 pm - Saturday, September 13, 2008

#11 Pentaprism Rocks

"You mean Leicas I think"

I was referring to cameras like the Leicas or the DP-1. People claim the dp-1 quality is nice, although epson's support seems bad (people say Epson claims the camera doesn't exist if you call them up)

Unfortunately I never had the chance to use one of those. If only they were cheaper....

10:47 pm - Saturday, September 13, 2008

#12 Pentaprism Rocks

stupid me... I wrote dp-1, but I meant "epson rd-1". The sigma dp-1 isn't a rangefinder obviously =)

10:50 pm - Saturday, September 13, 2008

#13 AA

You're still going to check your shot in the LCD anyways, this small a camera is geared to amateurs coming into the SLR format for the first time and other serious amateur looking for a compact alternative - who, most the time, will shoot on fill auto and let the camera do its thing, hoping that the lens options will give them better-looking photos than just their itzy-bitzy digicams they already have.

You guys are analyzing this camera too seriously.

4:12 am - Sunday, September 14, 2008

#14 John

"They killed any hope for the camera by using an EVF. It really makes quality crap"

The whole idea of micro 4/3 is to get rid of the mirror and OVF. This EVF is much better than usual and EVFs will keep on getting better until OVFs go the way of vinyl records.

9:16 am - Sunday, September 14, 2008

#15 Pentaprism Rocks

John, you think they'll ever manage matching the dynamic range of an eye using EVF?
It means the EVF should generate lights from the darkest of night scenes to the most painful bright eye the eye can stand.
That's the limit of a lens+mirror. The EVF is limited to the dynamic range of a monitor.

9:39 am - Sunday, September 14, 2008

#16 JH

I don't really see the limited EVF dynamic range as critically relevant to photography - most photos are displayed on a screen, and even more in the future. In this way an EVF or a LCD corresponds better to the photograph display medium than a mirror-system.

I do agree than in low light an EVF may have problems, but on the other hand, camera sensors are approaching in sensitivity the eye, and thus there needn't necessarily to be a problem.

9:52 am - Sunday, September 14, 2008

#17 John

Pentaprism, I would answer your query in three parts.

1. In principle, an EVF could match the dynamic range of the eye. Digital audio devices can exceed the range of human hearing, so I can see no reason in principal why digital video devices can't exceed the dynamic range of the eye. Having the equivalent of a flash go off in your face, for example, is not hard to achieve technically. You just need a bright enough light source.

2. I don't think it is desirable to have an EVF match the dynamic range of the human eye if your pictures aren't going to. My pictures aren't going to be too bright to look at nor so dark that I can't make out details. I want the EVF to preview the picture.

3. Whatever advantages you may think an OVF has over an EVF, you also have to consider the cost, which include the noise, space and weight of the mirror mechanism and the mechanical limitation that it imposes on burst rates (the mirror-free Casio EX-F1 can photograph at burst rates of up to 60 fps). I confidently predict that the market will soon judge that the shrinking advantages of OVFs don't justify the cost.

10:12 am - Sunday, September 14, 2008

#18 Pentaprism Rocks

Hi John, thanks for responding that fast. Yes, you are right at 1). I should have explained better. I meant that I don't see such an EVF appearing in the next 10-20 years. Nothing is impossible given enough time ;)

About 2), I think sensors already capture wider dynamic range than monitors. Sensors do 8-9 stops already. I don't think monitors reach that level, and sensors will go HDR soon I expect.

The EVF should at least surpass the sensor (raw) dynamic range

10:26 am - Sunday, September 14, 2008

#19 Mustafa Ajlan Abudak-Turkey

Hi John (and others)

I do not agree with you on couple of things you mentioned.I agree with some.

1. ''Digital audio devices can exceed the range of human hearing, so I can see no reason in principal why digital video devices can't exceed the dynamic range of the eye. ''

First of all, you compare wrong sides.Human eye is one of the most complex system in evolution. and yet can not be explained by standart neo-Darwinism. The chemical reactions that provide us to see the world is too many and at wide range in molecular level.(neccesary protein list will much longer than the G1 manual) Eyes take approximately our dayly % energy and brain's back lobs and cortex is highly specialized to get and to mean what we see. The World's darkest place is the curtain all action plays. and the most efficent and optimal processor deal with the composition...sound has temporary wawing, but seeing is permanent info flow as long as your eyes open.

I will not go any further.I think an analog human eye simulation digitally may be something very very far away.And I think human eye can detect any possible EVF view from analog no matter how the time pass.We havent got a lab as big as earth to develop real eye-like efficency.So EVF may well good for reading values but not as good as focusing on composition like OVF with an eye.

2.All commenters here I think see G1 as a real step forward for real digital rangefinder that one day will reach the flexibility and out put quality of DSLR system.Rightfully micro four thirds deserves some kind of appreciation in this aspect.

In addition to its more mobilized more compact, more sophisticated rangefinder style that corresponds basic manual photograpy and modern tricks...We need here a real viewfinder.And discussing over EVF will be right when EVFs give us HD quality but nothing digital can deceive eye about this issue. Also nothing can take the place of bright 0 coverage higher magnification viewfinder for a photography lover.

3. I want more than old masterpieces Leica rangefinder.I mean, surely it must be retro style, has got FF sensor,its size is as big as or between Leicas and G9, bright optical viewfinder(has some ghost-holographic additional glass screen front to see the values when we want)real default iso performance up to 6400. All manual buttons(iso-aperture-shutter etc) on it and a menu like Canon for modern tricks.Solid like a brick,may take photo everywhere and quick.No video no cry.. (I hear from now on someone says all above is a dream... but really good one:)

Yes AA is right we take this serious but those info exchanges above makes meaningful these sites.Thank You all about the perpectives you give.We learn from each other and companies may learn from us...

1:43 pm - Sunday, September 14, 2008

#20 John

Mustafa, the issue is not one of copying the eye, it is one of copying an OVF or, more precisely, copying an OVF sufficiently well that the human eye can't tell the difference between an OVF and an EVF --- at least not in any way that influences the ability to take photographs.

As I note under point 2., I don't actually think this is desirable, but I think it is possible.

1:57 pm - Sunday, September 14, 2008

#21 Mustafa Ajlan Abudak-Turkey

I see John. Just I want to pinpoint the facts as far as I know.

'Copying an OVF sufficiently well that the human eye can't tell the difference between an OVF and an EVF ''

This is not possible to me.Cause somehumans well see much better than others (like supertasters) so I think sufficency may well reach the point that it is very hard to discriminate but I prefer an OVF with holographic data input when asked.This is my dream on screen display :) while composing there is nothing to harm your framing but when you consider values they come instantly on optical screen (Written by somekind of lazer tech maybe)Isn't it a good idea? :)

2:43 pm - Sunday, September 14, 2008


Many years ago it was done on glass plates no ovf/evf then we moved on to film for years we just got on with what we had. Then came Digital WOW 1.2 Mega pixels 35mm = 15 million pixels or thereabouts, Now we are spoilt for choice it seems we can't decide if one type of viewfinder is better than the other, It's like this, with most cameras they do all the guess work we just point and hope it all comes .together and we have instant playback. Different cameras do different things you pay your money and get on with it the eye can see many things but it still seems to be fooled by A the price tag, B the supposed end result, C Anybody else's opinion. I however will continue buy my cameras with a OVF as i can't stand the bloody shutter lag of EVF'S.

11:15 pm - Sunday, September 14, 2008

#23 David Law

Seems there is a yearning for a camera which is Leica, Combined with Canon G10 and Panasonic features, now there would be a classic !! I believe people like to look through a Viewfinder even EVF it is a closeness thing being one with the camera, the mock up of the Olympus seems not to have this and it could kill the camera. I wait and see on that and hope the lens is top rate.

8:44 am - Wednesday, October 15, 2008

#24 pjbw

I have a Sony DSC-R1 so I was naturally interested in the Panasonic DMC-G1 and went to see one in Jessops. I take serious architectural photos for which the R1 is ideal - no lens distortion down to its 24mm equivalent. The 'standard' G1 lens only goes to 28mm equiv so I won't be getting a G1 yet. The assistant did not know about viewfinder modes on the G1 or, maybe there is only the one. The 3 instantly switchable WYSIWYG EVF modes on the R1 are priceless even if the refresh is slow. They mean I can never go back to a modified SLR film camera with mirror and prism OVF and LCD screen to see what my settings are.
In 2005-6 it really looked as if Sony were interested in producing a range of all-electronic interchangeable lens cameras. Probably the bean counters pointed out that a completely new range of bodies and lenses would be needed while there was still mileage in the DSLR models and so only the fixed lens R1 made it to market.
I really hope the G1 concept catches on though by the time my two irreplaceable RI's are no longer working.

6:05 pm - Sunday, November 16, 2008

#25 Andrew Richards

I got my G1 last weekend together with the 45-200mm lens on the strength of the review on the luminous landscape. I have a Canon DSLR outfit (including a 1DS MKIII) as well as a Mamiya based MFDB system and a Canon G10 and I have to say I am very impressed with the G1. I really do think it is a ground-breaking product; a Leica-like concept for the digital age and I wish Panasonic every success with it.
BTW, I have absolutely no affiliations to muddy the waters

6:33 pm - Tuesday, December 9, 2008

#26 Gary

You're wrong. The G1 turns out to be great camera after all. Just read the reviews. Panasonic scored big !!!!

1:37 am - Wednesday, December 10, 2008

#27 Gary

I meant some are wrong. Not you, Andrew. I'm getting mine in 3 weeks. It's gonna be better than sliced bread .

1:41 am - Wednesday, December 10, 2008

#28 Wayne

Last week I took the plunge and purchased a G1 .
I am very impressed with this camera and photo quality on RAW is excellent !

In my eyes a camera is for taking photographs not shooting movies !
So the G1 lacking a movie mode will be no great loss to me .
Panasonic also gave me a 3 year warranty free of charge , so to me they are putting their money where their mouth is....
Yes I agree you are ( at the moment ) a little limited on lenses , but Panasonic have promised 3 new lenses for the G1 this year .

1:52 pm - Saturday, February 7, 2009

#29 Peter

Very interesting blog.
I have always been mystified by the arguments in favour of optical view finders on digital cameras. What is the point of being able to see what the camera can't capture?
I will not be buying a G1; my 2005 all-electronic Sony DSC-R1 does everything I want from a camera. So much so that when it was discontinued (the bean counters obviously told Sony that there was more profit in DSLRs) I bought a second one as a spare.

7:17 pm - Saturday, February 7, 2009

#30 Keith Trigwell

I couldn't agree more with the remarks on the G1. An excellent piece of kit that I went for purely because of the advantages its size provides over my 5dII. I have a G10 as a quick point and shoot but this is not much bigger and delivers so much more. Got a pretty good deal on it as well at Park Cameras with the 14-45mm lens at Park cameras for £349 after the Panasonic cashback thing.

12:17 pm - Tuesday, June 1, 2010