Panasonic GX7 review

The best image quality from a G-series camera

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Panasonic's GX7 is nice and solid, with a secure, hefty grip for a camera of its type. It has a pretty comprehensive feature set in a relatively small body, although it is a little chunkier than the Panasonic GX1 that it replaces.

The camera has advanced exposure modes such as shutter priority, aperture priority and manual, along with a collection of automatic options for less experienced photographers.

However, because of the number of buttons and dials it has, the Panasonic GX7 looks quite serious, and this combined with its relatively high price means that it is unlikely to appeal to novice photographers, even though it would serve them quite well.

Experienced photographers will find that they have just about everything they could want, including the ability to create multiple exposure images and take time lapse sequences. There's also Wi-Fi connectivity built in to enable you to transfer images wirelessly and control the camera remotely.

Anyone who remains skeptical about the future of electronic viewfinders should take a look at the Panasonic GX7's finder. In many situations the only real clue that it is an electronic device is the amount of information that is available in it and the fact that it responds to changes to the exposure and white balance, and so on.

It provides a very detailed view, with natural colour and contrast in many situations. It's only when you try to shoot fast moving subjects that it becomes limiting.

Although it has the ability to shoot Full HD video at a range of frame rates and formats, the Panasonic GX7 is primarily a stills camera. Anyone who is serious about video would be best served by a model such as the Panasonic GH3, which has external mic and headphone ports - although Panasonic GH3 users may well be looking enviously at the Panasonic GX7's focus peaking.

We liked

We generally like touchscreen control, provided that the screen is responsive, and the Panasonic GX7's is nice and fast. However, there are times when physical buttons and dials are easier or faster to use, so it's great that Panasonic has kept the full complement of controls for the Panasonic GX7.

The tilting screen is also useful when you want to shoot landscape format images from especially high or low angles, and it's good that this is supplemented with a viewfinder.

If you're shooting from very low down you're more likely to compose the image in the main LCD screen than tilt up the electronic viewfinder, but nevertheless that tilting system is useful. It makes the camera more comfortable to use shooting with it on a tripod for instance.

We disliked

Although the Panasonic GX7 is bigger than the Panasonic GX1, it doesn't make a huge difference. And the grip is much more substantial, making the camera more secure in the hand.

While a tilting screen is a bonus over a fixed unit the Panasonic GX7's is prone to catching on a tripod mount. It's also no help when shooting portrait format images at awkward angles.

Panasonic also needs to work on its Tracking AF system so that it can keep up with fast subjects as they travel around the frame. The viewfinder's refresh rate also needs to be improved to make it easier to follow moving subject.

Final verdict

The Panasonic GX7 is a very nicely constructed camera that should meet the needs of experienced photographers looking for a small camera that accepts interchangeable lenses and enables plenty of control. It's a good alternative to a DSLR.

It's designed to be more compact and more portable than Panasonic's mini-DSLR style G-series cameras, but it still provides an impressive range of features. Our only disappointment is that the screen is tilting rather than fully articulating to make it more useful when shooting upright images.

Panasonic has managed to produce a contrast detection AF system that is getting close to a good phase detection system in a DSLR. It is to be congratulated for pushing the boundaries of what can be done with a compact system camera, and for making them more versatile.

First reviewed August 27 2013

Tech Specs

Product TypeMirrorless Camera Body Only
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Green CompliantYes
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Wireless LANYes
Effective Camera Resolution16 Megapixel
Product FamilyLumix G
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC UHS-I), Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC UHS-I), Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card
Image StabilizationOptical
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NamePanasonic
FeaturesFace Detection, Live View, Continuous Shooting Mode, Orientation Sensor
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsAVCHD, MPEG-4
Viewfinder TypeElectronic
Weight (Approximate)360 g
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityREACH
Image Sensor Size17.30 mm x 13 mm
Maximum Image Resolution4592 x 3448
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height70.6 mm
Width122.7 mm
Depth54.6 mm
Product SeriesG
Image FormatsJPEG, MPO, RAW
External FlashOptional
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
Product ModelDMC-GX7
Product NameDMC-GX7 Compact System Camera
Product LineLumix
Exposure Control
  • Program AE
  • Aperture Priority
  • Shutter Priority
  • Manual
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberDMCGX7EBK
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

LUMIX G Compact System Camera GX7 - The Ultimate DSLM Camera in Premium Flat Body - Packing a Host of Creative Functions for Photography Enthusiasts

The DMC-GX7 realizes high-quality image recording with real-to-life details through excellent resolution, image rendering and color reproduction. Taking full advantage of newly developed 16.00-megapixel Digital Live MOS sensor and Venus Engine, images are rendered with highly sharp resolution even shot in low-lit situations. In addition, the limit resolution is enhanced thanks to the precise detail reproduction and advanced Intelligent D-range Control ensures beautiful gradation with wider dynamic range than ever.

The Contrast AF System of DMC-GX7 excels in both speed and accuracy by exchanging digital signal between the camera and the lens at max. 240 fps. A variety of extensive AF functions enhances usability to comply with wide-ranging shooting situations. The Low Light AF makes it possible to set focus on the subject more precisely in -4EV situations, which is as dark as starry sky. The Pin-point AF allows you to set magnification from 3x to 10x enlargement by 0.1x step. The One-shot AF enables using AF in MF mode to set rough focus on the subject.

The DMC-GX7 newly integrates 90-degree tiltable LVF with 2760K equive. high resolution and approx. 100% color reproduction. The LVF allows photographers to look down the camera, which lets them shoot enables bust or low angle shot casually. The new large, 1040K-dot high resolution static-type touch monitor with approx. 100% of field of view tilts up and down. The front panel is directly attached to the new In Cell Touch LCD without containing air layer in between. The result is that the reflection of external light is dramatically suppressed.

The DMC-GX7 allows you to use max. 1/8000 fast shutter speed for more impressive expression with high speed lens. The Optical Image Stabilizer (as effective as the MEGA O.I.S. in the conventional DSLM lenses) is built in the camera body, which makes it more enjoyable to mount old lenses of your lens property. The DMC-GX7 is also compatible with Focus Peaking for more precise control of focusing. Dressed in magnesium alloy full diecast frame, the DMC-GX7 is a high quality camera in every aspect that has been awaited long by the photographers.

The DMC-GX7 records full HD 1920 x 1080, 50p (50Hz) smooth, high quality video in AVCHD Progressive and MP4 with stereo sound. The practical full-time AF and tracking AF is available in video recording. The cinema-like 24p video with the bit rate of max. 24Mbps or P/A/S/M mode provide richly expressive afterimage with overwhelming image quality. The motion picture quality is greatly improved thanks to the new Digital Live MOS Sensor, too. With the Wi-Fi® connectivity, remote shooting is available by using the smartphone/tablet.

Package Contents
  • DMC-GX7 Compact System Camera
  • Battery Pack
  • Battery Charger
  • Body Cap
  • Lens Cap
  • Lens Hood
  • Lens Rear Cap
  • USB Connection Cable
  • Shoulder Strap
  • Software CD-ROM
Limited Warranty1 Year