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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a great camera - everything I expected!, 1 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7CEB-K G Series Compact System Digital Camera - Black (20mm Lens, 16MP) (Electronics)
Coming from an 35mm APS-C background, I was wanting something smaller and lighter. I had looked at micro-four-thirds in the past, and the bodies and lenses I saw then were not /that/ much smaller, and there was no EVF, so I didn't buy. This camera is not cheap, but it includes an EVF which is very clear, and almost every other feature under the sun! The fact that the Advance Features manual runs to nearly 400 pages may put some buyers off, but there are simple shooting modes available if you wish. I still find that I'm pressing buttons when I shouldn't, so I do need to be careful and look what the viewfinder is telling me. I'm only a week into using the camera so I have a lot to learn about it. I am expecting the battery not to last as long as on a 35mm DSLR, so I also bought a lower-cost spare battery. I bought the 20mm pancake lens for lower-light use, and the "kit" of camera and lens saved some money on buying separately.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent CSC Camera, 11 July 2014
By 
Alasdair Wilkie "Alasdair_Wilkie" (Wokingham, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7CEB-K G Series Compact System Digital Camera - Black (20mm Lens, 16MP) (Electronics)
A brilliant cameras and now my main camera, replacing my Olympus E620. Using the lighter M4/3rds lenses makes a great difference to my back, carrying four or five lenses is in bag, saving about 30% weight.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Almost perfect in every way!!!, 1 Oct 2014
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This review is from: Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7CEB-K G Series Compact System Digital Camera - Black (20mm Lens, 16MP) (Electronics)
I want to start off by saying that I don't usually write reviews, but I have trawled through so many reviews, most of which I found very helpful, when deciding which camera to spend my hard earned cash on, that I feel obliged to do my part, and write a review on this fantastic camera.

To start off I'm not a professional, but am a keen amateur, and for someone who wants to learn the fundamentals of photography, and improve their photography skills, without splashing out on pro grade gear, this camera is perfect.

The biggest draw for me is the GX7's form factor. I have looked at a lot of DSLR's, and love the handling of them, but due to their bulk I can't imagine myself taking one everywhere with me. I've also looked at other micro 4/3 cameras from olympus, which are a lot more portable, but are just that bit too small for my hands. For me the GX7 is the perfect compromise, it's not quite pocketable, but can easily fit into a small bag with room for a couple of extra micro 4/3 lenses. The ergonomics of the GX7 is also superb. The grip is just big enough to give something substantial to hold onto, and the buttons are laid out where you'd naturally expect them to be. I also love the twin dials, which are a dream to use when shooting in manual mode.

The micro 4/3 sensor does a stellar job, at reproducing images that are sharp, and natural in colour. I know the image quality isn't quite on par with the best APS-C sensors, but to be honest the difference is negligible, you can easily make up this difference by using good quality, fast optics, which the micro 4/3 system has one of the best selections of. I also found when shooting in RAW mode and converting with lightroom I have been able to get some outstanding results. On that note, one thing to take into consideration, if you do want to convert RAW with lightroom, you will have to use lightroom 5, as previous versions are not compatible with the GX7's RAW files. I predominately use the camera for stills, as I'm more interested in photography than videography, but the video I have taken with the GX7 is very clean, and of high quality.

As far as features goes, the GX7 is packed, not everyone will use all of the features, but to be honest I've found most of them very useful. The touchscreen is fantastic for browsing and deleting photos, and the extra function keys, which are available through it, make it easy to quickly adjust the camera settings that you most frequently use. The tap to focus and shoot function is also something I couldn't imagine living without, now that I've used it.

The wifi works well, and is very comprehensive, I found it very easy to set up despite what some reviews have said. You can use the wifi to control pretty much any setting on the camera other than those that require the use of a physical switch, e.g selecting the shooting mode. I also found the wifi to be very useful for browsing through photos, and uploading them straight onto my i-pad. The only negative I have to say on the wifi, is that the range on it isn't that great, anything over 5m and you might lose connection.

Another great feature that I have found with the GX7, which is very rarely mentioned, is that you can buy a seperate AC adaptor that comes with a DC coupler to fit into the battery compartment of the camera. The lead of the adaptor just feeds through a small hole in the battery door, which is cover by a removable flap. I have found this to be extremely useful, when used with the built in intervalometer, for timelapse photography, as it means the camera can be plugged into an external power source. This is handy as the battery life on the GX7 while adequate for a days shooting, isn't long enough for the amount of exposures needed when taking a long timelapse sequence. Another feature that's useful when used taking timelapse sequences, is the electronic shutter, as using it helps prolong the life of the mechanical shutter.

The last part I'll cover in this review before I stop waffling on, is the EVF, which I can imagine for a lot of readers is one of the most important parts of the camera. I have to say whilst the EVF is perfectly usable on the GX7, I feel it's probably one of the only real areas for improvement. As I said before it's perfectly usable, and I do use it a lot, the image is very clear, and detailed, and the colours are very accurate, however my criticisms are that it's just a little small, and the eye cup lets a bit too much light in when viewing in bright daylight. I think the issue of size is due to the fact that they've used a monitor with a 16:9 ratio, which is fine for video, but when you want to shoot photos in 4:3, or 3:2 it has to crop down, leaving you with a smaller image. On the whole, it's very good, but could be better.

I hope that this review has been helpful for anyone who's looking to buy this camera, and that I've covered most of the areas that are important to you, I think it's clear from what I've written how fantastic I think this camera is. Putting all the technical stuff aside though, I think what I love about this camera the most is that it makes me want to get out there and take photos, and in my opinion that's what photography is all about.
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53 of 59 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Side by Side compared to the G3 (See image in Customer Gallery), 1 Feb 2014
By 
Trev-R (Boston UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Update: WEF an update to Photomatix 15 Feb (for me) the software now works perfectly with RAW files from this camera.

UPDATE: If you use Photomatix Pro for HDR using RAW files then read my note I have added at the bottom of this review (02/02/14)
UPDATE: Solving WiFi connection issue when no Access Point found by camera. See bottom of review (02/02/14)

I own a G3 and bought the GX7 as an upgrade and to be able to use my existing lens collection. I have just uploaded an image to the customer gallery which shows an extreme zoom in of photos taken within 5 minutes of each other using exactly the same settings on each camera and lens. I zoomed in using photoshop until the pixels appeared on screen then did a screen capture at this maximum magnification. The settings are in the text of the image.

The bottom line is that in real world conditions the G3 is just as good as the GX7 and in fact is much easier to use. The GX7 is a lovely camera, well built and with a fantastic range of features that the G3 doesn't have. Controlling the camera using my Xperia Z Pad was amazing. The camera itself has a high quality feel in the hand, I find all of the switches and dials easy to locate and use and they are very intuitive.

However, extra features aside, I have found the much cheaper G3 (£249 inc lens) gives results which are just as good as the GX7. In fact I find the metering on the G3 to be better than the GX7 which constantly seems to underexpose by about a stop. (I have checked all settings BTW) I took both cameras out and about around town and took similar photos with both cameras, printed them out and showed them to a couple of friends who are not into photography. Both preferred the photos shot with the G3. I printed straight out of camera without any editing.

If I were on a budget then I would recommend the G3 over the GX7, leaving plenty over to buy a couple of extra lenses. However if I did not have the G3 to compare it to I would have been very happy with the GX7.

The bottom line to me seems to be that what you are paying for is the better build quality and additional features such as WiFi and not for any improvement in image quality. As a side note whenever I have compared my Panasonics to my Sony 18 and 20mp cameras, the Panasonic 16mp always beat them by a light year in image quality. So while I am critical that there is no real difference between the 3 and 7, Panasonic are already starting from a high point anyway.

NOTE ON PHOTOMATIX PRO HDR SOFTWARE

This software has a major issue processing RAW files from this camera. This is not an issue with RAW files produced by the Panasonic G3. The software seems unable to detect the correct white balance and whatever setting you use within the software it generates a strong colour cast. This is not an issue in Photoshop CS6, Lightroom 5 or OnOne Photosuite 8. I have downloaded a trial of Google's HDR Efex Pro 2 and it interprets the GX7 RAW files without any issue, so I guess there is just something in the new Panasonic RAW files that Photomatix cannot cope with. I have contacted technical support to see if they can offer a solution. Update (04/02/14) The developers have confirmed that there is an issue between Photomatix and the GX7 RAW format which they are fixing now and should be released as an update in the very near future.

NOTE ON WiFi not being found by the GX7

If you try to setup WiFi to connect to your home network and the camera cannot detect an access point then you may have a similar issue to me. I use a BT Homehub and I had the WiFi set to automatic channel selection, this allows the router to decide which is the best 'local' channel. I was unable to find an access point with the GX7. When I looked at the network I found the Homehub had allocated channel 13. By changing to a manual setting and allocating channel 10 the GX7 found the network immediately. I would guess anything above 10 is invisible to the GX7.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely camera, 8 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This camera is so nice to hold use, I think they made it just for me. I am upgrading from a compact which I eventually found limiting, I wanted to be able to control the picture but I did not want a bulky camera.

Specifically I chose the GX7 or the adjustable viewfinder and the "stealth" mode. The adjustable viewfinder has proven to be a really good choice because I use it in the looking-down position for most of my shots. It feels more stable and more compact way to engage with the camera and focus on the subject. The stealth mode is a bit of fun right now, but as I get more used to using the camera, I think for "street" photography it will be great. I am also learning Macro. I haven't tried the sports mode at all yet.

The camera is so packed with features so you may want to read the advanced instructions. I was happy to find these are very well written and easy to follow. The pictures are rich in colour with great depth compared to my compact, and the B&W option gives excellent contrast. There are so many customisations that you can use or ignore depending on whether you want to take time over the shot, or if you want to get it quickly. It also switches on quickly which is useful if your subject is of the momentary kind. Such as a swan landing on a lake.

The camera sits well in my hand, I have a US Gear wrist strap attached and the fitting at the bottom makes for a more tactile grip and this is how I carry it most of the time. Confession, I jog with it, which is apparently not that good for it, but that's what I need it for. I have the compact 14-42 GX lens which I find really good for now, but a professional photographer friend ticked me off for not choosing prime fixed focus lenses.

So all in all, highly recommended if you want a light comfortable camera, improve your range of styles, and to get embarrassingly improved photos compared to your compact.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb piece of kit, 6 Nov 2014
I'm very much a point and shoot photographer. Holiday snaps, family and friends and a bit of scenery and wildlife or anything that randomly takes my fancy. I use video a lot and like recording musicians and bands. I bought the GX7 as an upgrade to my FZ-38 which is still a brilliant cheap camera with a superb stereo microphone. I got the 14-42mm lens and bought it in time to get the promotional 45-150mm mid range lens for free. This gives me not quite the same zoom range as the FZ-38 but because the camera is so much better, I find 10x zoom pictures taken with the GX7 have just about the same detail in them as the same shot taken with the FZ-38 with full 18x zoom on its leica lens.
Digital zoom to me doesn't seem worth anything as there is no greater resolution that I can see, you're just apparently losing some of the picture. Low light pictures however are an absolute revelation , I could not believe what the GX7 can pick up, shooting labels on bottles in dark corners of my kitchen on full zoom surprised me being able to read clearly what I could not even see was there with the naked eye. I absolutely love the tilting EVF and the superb EVF resolution. Touch screen is brilliant and completely intuitive as I'm accustomed to smartphones and tablets nowadays. The panasonic image app works just great wirelessly from iphone and iPad, brilliant for stills or video selfies! However I cannot get the camera connected to my mac. Apparently it is easy with windows machines but there you go , image app to IOS then airdrop suits me just fine. If I want bigger/faster transfers to the mac I can simply slot in the SD card. The flash is a bit small and flimsy, I bought the Panasonic DMW-FL220E Compact Flash for G Series Cameras, FZ100 and LX5 for £49.99 and that suits my basic needs just fine. As I said at the start I am not an expert photographer but this camera is and I absolutely love it. I also bought DSTE 2pcs DMW-BLE9 Replacement Li-ion Battery for DMW-BLE9E, DMW-BLE9PP, DMW-BLG10 and Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3, DMC-GF5, DMC-GF6, DMC-GX7 Cameras not bad 2 for £12.95. Lastly a Hoya macro +4 close up filter for a tenner but not on amazon. You need the 46mm fitting for these 4/3 lenses.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I love it, 21 Feb 2014
Have the camera for 4 months and quite simply it is great .
High quality photos /videos perfect for the work I do
I upgraded from a GX1 and I am not disappointed .
The only flaw I can see is that the camera has has no video stabilization for Olympus lenses
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Panasonic DMC-GX7, 22 April 2014
By 
Martin Beecroft "bittmaster" (North Wales, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I have been (and am still) a user of Canon DSLR cameras over a number of years. I have also used Panasonic compact cameras and a Panasonic camcorder as backup, with very impressive results. I decided to buy the GX7 micro4/3 camera as a backup for my DSLR and as a smaller lighter system for street and travel photography. All the reports and reviews on this camera read well and the retro looks are certainly a head turner. I actually bought the camera from my local high street camera shop although the price is the same on Amazon.

The camera is well constructed and feels solid in the hand. The control buttons are well placed, easy to access and the 4 function buttons can be user programmed if your not satisfied with the factory pre-sets. The wi-fi is a big improvement on previous Panasonic cameras, making it very easy to use an iPhone or most Android mobiles as a remote control. I use an HTC One mobile and had no difficulty setting it up with the camera. The 20mm Panasonic lens is excellent and very fast auto focus. I am awaiting delivery of a 14-42 zoom lens and will be buying a 45-150 soon. Image quality is superb and the whole experience with this camera has convinced me of the merits of the micro 4/3 system, for my photographic requirements anyway. It is so much easier to carry than a full size DSLR when out and about. A special mention must be reserved for the electronic view finder on this camera; it is quite simply superb!

Panasonic have built a real gem with this camera which, I believe, will fulfil the requirements of both amateur and professional photographers alike. IT IS FABULOUS!

UPDATE: I have now been using this camera for a few months and have found it has become my camera of choice in most situations, particularly when going out and about and on a recent holiday on Lanzarote. The results I am getting are fabulously sharp. The camera is a gem to use. I am collecting some nice lenses from Panasonic and Olympus all of which provide good sharp images. I am delighted with this camera that has more than lived up to expectations and is now available from various suppliers at bargain prices. Can't recommend it enough. Fabulous, simply fabulous!
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GX7 is a camera you can count in any scenerio, 23 April 2014
By 
M. N. Akhtar "stencil age" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is the most feature packed, reasonably priced and attractive camera to date. For me, the most attractive feature was its electronic shutter, which is completely silent, so much so that you only hear little wizz of the lens sometime, and is completely unnoticed in any place where silence needs to be observed, like candid, religious places, birds photos etc.

Image quality is top notch too with this sensor and Panasonic has improved it a lot compare to initial G/GF/GX series, matching up to the flagship GH models like GH3.

If I have to pick any cons, then electronic viewfinder is not as comfortable as GH1 (the camera I was using before) and the IBIS (though it is a welcome addition) is not perfect, although it is not buggy as some light weight Olympus bodies.

It's Wifi implementation is very easy to connect and I found no trouble at all capturing photos from Android phone remote app.

Looks are subjective but to my eyes its best to date m4/3 body, very well made camera with beautifully crafted and buttons of right sizes and behavior and the bundled lens has same polish and rigid shell.

All the missing features like Panorama mode and HDR also implemented.

I am very satisfied and it's highly recommended!!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars so far so good, 5 May 2014
By 
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This review is from: Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7CEB-K G Series Compact System Digital Camera - Black (20mm Lens, 16MP) (Electronics)
so far is it great except i think the flash feels flimsy though and needs to be more robust but i will not use often as low light ability is good, finding the right case for the 20mm lens version is proving difficult but otherwise the camera is pretty good
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