I've written numerous times about how Panasonic's LUMIX line of cameras keeps living up to their tagline of "Changing Photography." Well, it's not just the camera line that's brought back the spark for creativity for me personally, but the friendships I've made with the members of the Luminary team.
My good buddy Daniel Cox shared this post about the G85 a couple weeks ago on The Corkboard Blog. While I don't normally share product reviews - LUMIX keeps expanding the family with incredible features and one new creative tool after another. It's a great review guaranteed to give you some solid feedback through Daniel's experience.
Just click on the "read more" button to read the rest of the review.
Join Dan and the rest of the Luminary team with a visit to the Lumix Lounge. This is an incredibly diverse group of artists and educators always willing to help you raise the bar on the quality of your images.
Whether you're an active outdoor wildlife shooter or not, Daniel needs to be on your radar. Follow Daniel and Tanya's travels at Natural Exposures. If you're looking for amazing memory-making trips check out their travel schedule. Nobody does it better! Last summer Sheila and I caught up to them at their home in Bozeman. They're amazing hosts and there's no doubt in my mind if you're on a trip with them you're going to get the same attention!
Panasonic LUMIX G85 Shooting Experience
This past fall and early winter have given us a couple of new and exciting additions to the Micro Four Thirds world in the form of the Lumix G80/85 and the Olympus OM-D EM-1 Mark ll. Just for clarification, the Lumix G85 is the model sold in North America and the G80 is sold in Europe.
Both Lumix and Olympus bodies are innovative from a technology perspective, but the G85 fits the average user’s needs more economically in a way that only Panasonic is consistently doing—giving photographers great tools with durability and professional aptitude at affordable prices. And it’s the qualities of the G85/G80 I’m excited to share with you in this Blog post.
A Review Based on My Kind of Photography
Keep in mind that my reviews of a particular camera are obviously from my own personal perspective based on how I use the camera. I won’t be getting into minute details unless those details affect how the camera performs in the situations I use it in. For more information on each and every possibility you should check out DPReview’s review of the Lumix G80/85.
I’ve been shooting the G85 now for a little over three months. In that time I’ve had a chance to get a solid feel for this wonderfully compact, sturdy advanced enthusiast’s camera. In short, it handles exceptionally well, has some of Panasonic’s newest technologies, and all at a price that won’t bother most photographer’s spouses. Just think how nice it will be not having to sneak another camera in under your jacket:) Yes, I’m talking to you.
The First Unboxing and Under the Hood
Let’s start with the obvious—when you pull this camera out of the box. First of all, like all the MFT cameras before it, the G85 is small and compact. Even so, it has a solid feel. Before the G85 there was the G7, a somewhat similar MFT camera missing many of the great new features of the G85. Many photographers criticized the G7 as feeling too plasticky, a bit too light, and seriously underwhelming in its ability to instill confidence in its durability. So Panasonic did what they’ve been doing since jumping into building still photo and video cameras, they made serious improvements in the follow-up model which is the G85.
A Metal Chassis
The first thing Panasonic did was replace the front plate with a solid aluminum frame. The G85 has much more metal, and though I never did have an issue of any kind with my G7, many feel the added weight and heft of the new metal body is a welcomed addition. It comes with a small price in weight but one could argue it’s worth the cost.
We had friends visiting over the weekend and decided to rent a boat and head north to explore the inland waterway towards Sarasota. We started at the bottom of the map to the right and turned around at the top. All we wanted was to cruise a little piece of the bay and do a picnic lunch on the water. Over the four-hour trip we followed the dark blue line on the map straight north and back.
It was the perfect day to be out on the water and I never travel without a LUMIX camera. There are too many beautiful moments I've missed because the only thing I had to shoot with was my phone!
I took my FZ300, my favorite travel camera. It was just the four of us, but we had a lot of goodies to take along - mostly food! Well, one of the fun benefits of Panasonic's mirrorless technology is the weight of the gear - at just a little over a pound and a half, it was nothing to throw in my back pack.
The FZ300 has a 25-600mm zoom and it came in handy when we came upon a group of white pelicans. I've never seen one before and to find them all on a sandbar was a kick. It was as if they were waiting for a 4:00 pm bus.
Here's where the FZ300 shines! We didn't want to move in too close and have them fly away. Plus, I was on a moving boat - no way to use a tripod. I shot at ISO 100, f4 1/2000. The FZ300 simply never disappoints and so often has made me look better than I deserve!
Later in the trip the bridge opened for a sailboat. We were at least a quarter mile away and once again the 25-600 mm zoom came through with flying colors.
I've written a lot about Panasonic, time and again energizing my love for photography. Remember, while I know more than I let on, my passion is helping you with the business and marketing side of imaging, not shooting. However, I love having a camera in my hands. It's especially fun for a day out with no true purpose but to capture images along the way with friends. The FZ300 is perfect!
Don't take my word for it - visit a Panasonic LUMIX dealer and check the entire "family" out for yourself. The new GH5 is creating incredible buzz and loaded with some incredible features.
And, Check out the Lumix Lounge and follow the Luminary team. They represent some of the very best and most diverse artists in photography. Just click on the banner below.
Welcome to Luminary Corner. Besides being a recognized member of the professional photographic community, each post author is a member of Panasonic's LUMIX Luminary team.