Are Panasonic Lumix cameras good for professional photography?
If you want to get the best Panasonic camera from a wide selection of various Lumix cameras, you should read many reviews and test dozens of cameras. The diversity of these models is extremely wide, offering universal compact cameras as well as professional systems.
Making comparison tests, I have detected that each Panasonic model has its strengths. For example, convenient compact cameras feature such an advantage as high performance combined with minimal body dimensions. Panasonic Lumix models are popular among users primarily due to excellent video quality, being the choice of video operators. But it doesn’t mean that photo quality in Lumix cameras is inferior to competitors.
Sensor: 20.3MP Micro 4/3 | Video: 4K (60fps) | Screen: 3-inch 1,040k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: OLED 3,680k dots | Weight: 1.45 lbs
⊕ Flexible and well-designed control
⊕ Fast and precise autofocus
⊕ Direct autofocus
⊕ Burst shooting with continuous autofocus up to 20 fps
⊕ Sensor control via an LCD screen
⊖ Not found
For the lineup of mirrorless Panasonic cameras, this model is a big and qualitative leap forward. Thanks to the high-speed burst shooting combined with fast and precise autofocus, big memory buffer as well as flexible control, effective stabilization system, high photo and video quality in 4K format, this camera may be easily called a professional one.
Add a solid metallic chassis, water and dust protection, the possibility to work in sub-zero temperatures, live viewing and control via a qualitative LCD screen and electronic viewfinder, and you will get a convenient tool for shooting in challenging conditions.
This mirrorless Panasonic Lumix camera isn’t ahead of a DSLR in weight and dimensions. But for professionals, its convenient grasping handle will be more pleasant than the possibility to put the camera into the coat pocket.
Full-frame mirrorless Panasonic monster
Sensor: 47.3MP Full-Frame | Video: 4K (60fps) | Screen: 3.2-inch 2,100k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: OLED 5,760k dots | Weight: 2.24 lbs
⊕ High image quality up to ISO 3200
⊕ Stabilizer with the efficiency of more than 6 levels
⊕ Possibility of 6K shooting
⊕ Buffer volume for 40 RAW files
⊕ Smart autofocus with the recognition function (faces, objects, eyes, animals)
⊖ Big size and weight
⊖ Shooting speed with continuous autofocus decreases to 6 fps
⊖ Comparatively small shade reserve while RAW editing
The strength of DC-S1R is its great photo detalization thanks to a 47 MP sensor. This monster is developed for landscape, studio, object and portrait shooting. Speed parameters are up to 9 fps with frame-by-frame autofocus and up to 6 fps with a follow-up one.
The buffer is big by modern standards: 40 RAW. It also features some new functions and an ace in the hole in the form of 4K shooting, making the model one of the best Panasonic cameras. In several seconds, it records 6 dozen of frames that may be saved as single photos.
The autofocus system of the camera uses the possibilities of artificial intelligence and computing power of the processor to recognize objects. It rarely happens that you have to choose the autofocus manually.
Focusing on the contrast principle is quick enough for the major shooting types and is very precise. The stabilization system deserves particular praise thanks to its ability to win more than 6 exposure levels in comparison with critical values.
A large body size took the issue of energy consumption off the table. Comparatively big battery is capable of ensuring continuous work without a recharge ‒ half a day of an intensive and a whole day of an ordinary shoot.
Best Panasonic camera for video recording
Sensor: 10.2MP Micro 4/3 | Video: C4K (60fps) | Screen: 3.2-inch 1,620k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: OLED 3,680k dots | Weight: 1.46 lbs
⊕ All-Intra with a capacity of 400 Mbit
⊕ Standard HLG, Vlog profile and time code synchronization
⊕ Sensitive and extremely fast autofocus
⊕ Qualitative body with great additions
⊖ Matrix resolution is comparatively low
⊖ No image stabilizer
It is a great camera to shoot 4K videos. Panasonic has already created a universal model in the world of 4K cameras ‒ GH5. But GH5S goes father and sacrifices resolution in favor of video quality.
The sensor with a resolution of 10MP is not very suitable for photo shooting but it is ideal for 4K videos because its dimensions are a little bigger than those of Micro 4/3 format. It allows recording with various shooting rates without usable area loss and frame cropping.
Also, I would like to mention that this Panasonic Lumix camera may shoot 4:2:2 10-bit videos and record them on the memory card. GH5S has a shooting mode with a flat V-logL gamma by Panasonic for further expansion of the dynamic range. The majority of competitors may shoot clips lasting up to 30 minutes while GH5S supports unlimited recording that depends on the memory card capacity. The camera provides high sharpness, contrast and good color reproduction.
Protected Panasonic camera with a 5-axis stabilization
Sensor: 20.3MP Micro 4/3 | Video: 4K (30fps) | Screen: 3-inch 1,040k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: OLED 2,360k dots | Weight: 1.18 lbs
⊕ High-performance in-built stabilization system
⊕ Weatherproof performance
⊕ V-Log L (4:2:0) profile support
⊕ Video shooting in Full HD format with frequency up to 120 fps
⊕ Recharge via USB
⊖ Poor maximum speed of burst shooting in full resolution
⊖ 4K video recording is performed with 1,25х crop and frequency of no more than 30 fps
⊖ Electronic viewfinder of the previous generation
DC-G90 is a controversial camera that commands respect from the first minute thanks to its performance and well-designed control. It doesn’t disappoint while shooting simple stories and pleases with an abundance of interesting schticks ‒ shooting with creative filters in 4K photo mode, post focus, and etc.
However, in challenging shooting conditions, this Panasonic Lumix model shows itself not in the most flattering light. Shooting with high ISO is one of the main disappointments. While shooting, ISO 2500 was already critical.
Although autofocus pleased with the response speed and ability to work in darkness, in practice, it appears to be not a precise one and seems not to catch up with the fast movement in the frame.
The camera is interesting for advanced lovers of leisured creative shooting. If you are a landscape shooter or shoot portraits in good lighting, the described drawbacks will not affect you much. The opportunity to purchase relatively cheap optics is another advantage.
Travel photographers should appreciate a good construction of this model, dust and water protection, extremely convenient tilting screen and a great stabilizer.
Like other Panasonic Lumix mirrorless models, it has an in-built Dual IS 2 ‒ a hybrid stabilization system that sums up the optical stabilization and internal stabilization with a matrix shift in order to compensate vibration up to five levels.
The best Panasonic camera for beginners
Sensor: 20.3MP Micro 4/3 | Video: 4K (30fps) | Screen: 3-inch 1,240k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: LCD 2,760k dots | Weight: 0.99 lbs
⊕ Comparatively flexible RAW
⊕ Burst shooting up to 9 fps
⊕ Sensor interface
⊕ Autofocus on faces and eyes
⊖ 4K video is recorded with crop
⊖ No output for a microphone and headphones
⊖ Weak autofocus while shooting dynamic stories
Although DC-GX9 is the best Panasonic camera to begin your career, it limits your potential in terms of creative growth. It can shoot with a speed of 9 fps (up to 30 fps in 4K photo mode). The model has predictable and fast autofocus, flexible RAW and well-designed control, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
The camera turned out to be compact and convenient, with great control and several programmed buttons. A convenient sensor display and tilting viewfinder should be also noted. In a small body, there is a place for an in-built flash and a hot shoe so you may comfortably work in the studio.
Conventional drawbacks of this Panasonic Lumix model are hidden in video shooting. 4K recording is possible only with crop. There are no separate outputs to connect the microphone and headphones.
However, the capabilities available are quite enough for amateur purposes. It is a good choice if photography is your hobby. The model is suitable for learning and future creativity thanks to developed functionality and characteristics comparatively high for this class.
The best mirrorless Panasonic Lumix camera for vloggers
Sensor: 16MP Micro 4/3 | Video: 4K (30fps) | Screen: 3.0-inch 1,040k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: OLED 2,360k dots | Weight: 1.11 lbs
⊕ Great user interface and hybrid control
⊕ Many programmed control tools
⊕ SDXC UHS-II support
⊕ Continuous burst shooting at maximum speed ⊕ Record-sensitive autofocus
⊖ No oleophobic display cover
⊖ Comparatively long preparation for work
⊖ Weak stabilization efficiency in the photo mode
Panasonic Lumix G80/G85 is an appealing device for amateur shooters. Lightweight and water-resistant, it is equipped with many control tools, a tilting sensor screen and the possibility to be adjusted according to your needs.
An important advantage over competitors is a hybrid control that allows changing practically all the parameters using classic management tools as well as virtual sensor buttons and sliders. Let’s add many identified and 10 programmed buttons, and we will get an almost ideal user interface.
The camera supports 4K photo shooting. In fact, it is shooting with 4K resolution and a flow rate of 30 frames per second. But subsequently, any of the frames may be transformed into a single photo with the resolution of 8 MP.
The camera also has a Post Focus function that enables you to select an autofocus point after the shooting or combine all the photos taken into one with a huge depth of field that is very useful in object photography.
The best Lumix camera for travelling
Sensor: 20.1MP 1-inch | Video: 4K (30fps) | Lens: 8.8-132 mm f/3.3-6.4 Zoom 15x | Screen: 3.0-inch 1240k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: LVF 2,330K dots | Weight: 0.75 lbs
⊕ 1”-type compact camera featuring decent telephoto reach
⊕ Surpasses competitors in terms of size
⊕ Rubberized grip is an improvement in comparison with a previous model
⊕ Decent battery life
⊖ Poor lens performance
⊖ Auto ISO feature is not the best one
This Panasonic Lumix model boasts the best battery life. It has a retractable flash, four adjustable buttons and a special autofocus/autoexposure lock button.
The most distinct feature of DC-TZ200 is its lens. It consists of 13 elements situated in 11 groups ‒ 5 aspherical elements, 3 ‒ with an extra-low dispersion, and one ‒ of a mixed type.
Together they create a 15x optical zoom lens which may be fully dragged into the camera body. The lens also allows performing a great macro shooting at a distance of 5 cm. Moreover, a 1-inch MOS sensor of the Panasonic Lumix TZ200 camera is extremely big for such a compact camera and contributes greatly to detalization increase.
The best budget Panasonic camera
Sensor: 20.1MP 1-inch | Video: 4K (25fps) | Lens: 27 - 270mm f/2.8 - 5.9 Zoom 10x | Screen: 3.0-inch 1040k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: LVF 1166K dots | Weight: 0.685 lbs
$331 VIEW ON EBAY
⊕ Unlimited 4K video recording with slow and quick motion
⊕ Frame rate changes while recording
⊕ Optical image stabilization
⊕ Smooth and steady zooming while maintaining focus, smooth aperture
⊖ Fixed lens
⊖ Aperture changes throughout the zoom range
The 20MP resolution ensures the image of very good quality even in low light conditions. When shooting up to ISO 1600 there is little noise in the image and great sharpness around the edges. At ISO 3200 - 12800 you have to deal with the worsening of the image quality.
The camera can record Ultra HD videos with a good rate of 30fps. Besides that, TX101 has a slow-motion (100fps) feature but in the HD mode only. While shooting, you can conveniently use the touch control feature on the sharp but not swivel 3-inch screen.
Besides the PASM mode and the aperture and shutter speed-changing dial, you have 24 scene modes. DMC-TZ101 has a hinged flash without the hot shoe. The optical zoom lens has three adjustment rings and you can assign their functions yourself.
To keep Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ101 so compact, the manufacturer had to compromise a couple of things, like 10x image stabilization zoom, which is the absolute minimum for a mega-zoom camera.
The best Panasonic camera for 4K vlogging
Sensor: 20.1MP 1-inch | Video: 4K (30fps) | Lens: 24-72mm f/1.4-2.8 Zoom | Screen: 3.0” 1,040K-dots touchscreen | Weight: 0.68 lbs
⊕ High-aperture optics
⊕ High-quality oleophobic tilt touch display
⊕ Well-designed hybrid control
⊕ 4K video recording and generally high-quality video picture
⊖ Relatively short series when using the RAW format
⊖ Too much hidden noise reduction when using JPEG
⊖ No possibility to connect an external mic
This camera has a rare focus bracketing feature. When using it, you can choose a focus step (between 1 and 10) and set the number of frames (up to 999).
This feature will not only give you better-focused images while shooting with an open aperture but also, for example, will be great for product photography because the camera will let you “glue” together a lot of images with different focused to get a final image with a much higher depth of field.
Another interesting feature is the interval shooting. In this mode, you can take up to 9999 shots with a step from 1 second to 99 minutes 59 seconds.
The camera has a Wi-Fi module, however, neither NFC nor Bluetooth is provided, so the first connection may take a few minutes. The camera also provides autofocus, subject tracking and face detection modes.
The latter has the feature of creating a list of selected faces (you will take 3 photos with different facial expressions) with a possibility to specify the name and the age. Later, you will be able to automatically sort these photos when previewing them.
One feature that makes it the best Lumix camera is the possibility to shoot videos with a resolution of 3840×2160 pixels with a stream speed of 30 frames per second and 100 Mbps. Among its rivals, only Sony DSC-RX100 V has such capability but it is more expensive.
Best bridge Lumix camera
Sensor: 20.1MP 1-inch | Video: 4K (30fps) | Lens: 25-400mm f/2.8-4 Zoom 16x | Screen: 3-inch 1240k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: LVF 2360K dots | Weight: 1.78 lbs
⊕ High zoom ratio
⊕ Wide aperture for the zoom
⊕ High burst speed and a large buffer
⊕ 4K video recording and slow-motion Full HD
⊕ A jack for an external mic
⊖ Doesn’t support SD UHS-II
⊖ 4K video recording is cropped
The lens of this camera can be used for any type of photography. There is a 1″ matrix that works together with the lens. The rate features are relatively high but don’t have impressive numbers, which often negatively affects the price of the camera. Lumix FZ1000 II can shoot up to 12 fps. You can record 4K videos with autofocus, audio (from external mic too), and effective image stabilizer.
Among the strengths of this camera, I should mention very advanced control. There are 2 dials, plenty of programmable buttons, as well as a touch user interface. It doesn’t have any obvious weaknesses, however, you shouldn’t expect anything extraordinary from it.
FZ1000 II is not a professional-level camera but it is the best Panasonic Lumix camera for photography enthusiasts, who take photos for personal use while on vacation, traveling or at home. This is where the camera is going to substitute all the expensive photography equipment but still provide you with excellent image quality.
Long zoom with great picture quality
Sensor: 18.1MP 1/2.3-inch | Video: 4K (30fps) | Lens: 20 - 1200mm f/2.8-5.9 Zoom 60x | Screen: 3-inch 1240k dots touchscreen | Viewfinder: LVF 1,166k dots | Weight: 1.36 lbs
⊕ External flash shoe
⊕ Integrated electronic viewfinder
⊕ Focus with face detection
⊕ 49 focus points
⊕ Long battery life (330 shots)
⊖ No articulating screen
⊖ Max sensitivity just ISO 3.200
This is one of the best Lumix cameras, which has a powerful optic zoom and amazing capabilities when it comes to controlling shooting modes, including manual ones for working with photos and videos. FZ82 has a universal wide-angle LUMIX DC VARIO 20mm lens that is capable of 60x optical zooming.
With its help, you can shoot dynamic scenes with animals or birds from a large distance. POWER O.I.S. optical active mode image stabilization system suppresses jitter when shooting without a tripod, even at a great distance from the subject. Intelligent Zoom feature increases the zoom ratio up to 2 times with a slight decrease of image quality. There is an additional digital zoom of up to 4x.
Lumix FZ82 has a high-speed and high-precision autofocus with DFD defocus technology to get better depth. This technology decreases the focusing time. The camera is capable of high-speed continuous shooting at the rate of up to 10 fps in AFS mode and at 6 fps in AFC mode to capture a fast-moving subject with clear focus.
I have studied Panasonic Lumix cameras long enough and now I can odder some practical advice on how to select the best Panasonic Lumix cameras.
Panasonic is a well-known digital camera manufacturer with different model lines. Sometimes the differences are in the technical specifications, while at other times they will be purely aesthetical, for example, a letter suffix to denote a certain color (K for black, S for silver, A for blue, R for red, and W for white).
The price largely depends on the type of camera you choose. The newest Panasonic cameras can reach a price of about $900. On the other hand, you can find a lot of top-rated ones that will cost less than $400.
The bridge cameras from Panasonic cost from $400 to $1,200 depending on their size. A camera that has a huge zoom range and is bigger will be more expensive, while an exclusive small one is more affordable.
If you are on the market for the best Lumix cameras of a mirrorless type, you can spend anything between $450 for an entry-level model to more than $2,600 for a camera that is weather-sealed and will allow you to record 4K videos.
The biggest advantage of a mirrorless camera is that you can change lenses. So, with the time you can start investing in different lenses and increase your collection as you become more and more proficient in photography.