The Panasonic G7 - Latest in a distinguished line.

Ever since buying that Panasonic G1 back in 2008, I've owned and used the G1. G2, G3, G5, and G6 and see no reason not to buy the G7. As a cheap(ish) light, small camera capable of 4K video and stills as well as the usual m4/3 image quality, there is a lot to like. Particularly with that rather nice retro silvered / chrome version which is fortunately going to available in the UK. (Some of the other chrome versions haven't made it here.) And unless some disaster has happened in the manufacturing process, I see no reason why this shouldn't be everything that I expect.

Panasonic, for me (and a lot of others) have the best hybrid stills / video option out there. Panasonic really have got video output nailed. A lot of other manufacturers, with supposed reputations for video don't deliver in terms of quality. But all the recent Lumix cameras I've owned have produced stunningly sharp footage with excellent dynamic range and superb colour rendition. The 4K footage i get from my Panasonic engineered Leica D-LUX (Typ 109) is seriously good and I expect the G7 to equal that. Plus this 4K photo mode that Panasonic are promoting is very useful indeed for action shooting and there are further options to take this on further. 

You can get the very impressive list of specs. from the Panasonic website - HERE

I have a lot of time for Panasonic and over the years their cameras haven't let me down. They are a bit 'aesthetically challenged, and are usually some way behind Olympus in that regard. The camera bodies also have a distinct plastic feel to them, but there is no doubt that what's 'under the hood' just gets more and more impressive. Particularly the video and I suspect it's going to take a really demanding professional broadcast requirement for a GH4 to be used in preference. And that is probably where I would see the G7 fitting in to my workflow, to produce high quality stock video clips, with the bonus of some excellent low(er) ISO stills as well.

When I was shooting weddings and events with my nephews, we used Panasonic G's for the majority of our work and I know that many, including the BBC who use one with their drones, are still getting good value from GH2's. The G7 moves this on with the 4K option however and even though 4K television is a long way away, shooting in 4K and outputting in 1080HD has lots of attractions and produces really good looking footage. In many ways the LX100 / Leica D-LUX is the equal of the G7 in terms of stills and video quality, but the interchangeable lens options of the G7, allowing me to use some of my top class Nikon and Voigtlander lenses is a very attractive alternative and I'm sure many videographers would see this as a nice back up to a GH4. 

And lets not forget the stills that m4/3 can produce. Still limited to 16MP, but producing files easily capable of being upsized to 24MP and beyond. One of the consequences of shooting a lot of video is that I'm using tripods a lot more, so I'm maximising the image quality that I get from my cameras. And I have to say a correctly exposed, tripod mounted image from a current m4/3 camera is a thing of beauty. These days those sensors are made by Panasonic themselves for their own and Olympus cameras and they sure know how to maximise the quality of those small sensors. 

A very welcome addition to the Panasonic range and a way of getting into 4K at a reasonable price. Nice One.