Monday, July 11, 2011

Full Review of Panasonic G3 Finally Posted.

I don't consider a camera actually reviewed until DPReview posts their twenty-page mega-review that is, in my mind, the defining statement on the quality of a camera. They're still not very critical, giving cameras that I considered absolute shite acceptable ratings, but they provide so much raw material that one can easily draw conclusions.

This is in contrast to other review sites which seem highly averse to letting you have the raw materials of their reviews. is the fucking worst. Talk about useless reviews.

But back to the Panasonic. It looks very good. I'm disappointed that Panasonic, in some attempt to figure out what the fuck it's doing, moved the features of the G3 downmarket from the G2. Everything is still an upgrade, simply by virtue of newer technologies, but the philosophy is inferior. Certain features are missing simply to differentiate the camera from its big brother, the GH2. That practice really, really pisses me off. As a manufacturer, your mandate is to make the best product possible for a price. Don't remove features simply because you've out-done another, more expensive product that you make. It's dishonest, bad business, and just sketchy.

And I know that I keep harping on it, but it bears repeating; PANASONIC'S MARKET DIRECTION IS WRONG. You'd think that the success of the Fuji X100 would have convinced them of this, but no. They continue to think that these cameras are being purchased by people stepping up from point-&-shoots. They are not. They are being purchased by people coming down from traditional DSLR cameras who want the reduced size, primarily of the lenses. We're (I say we because I'm certainly in that demographic) willing to pay a fair chunk of change. If Olympus and Panasonic don't realize this, they'll lose us to Sony or whatever Fuji has up its sleeve and the bottom will positively fall out.

But back to the camera. The noise levels are much lower than the old 12Mp sensor that has been on duty for the past two years. But we already knew that the sensor, although new to Panasonic, was at least a generation behind the newest Sony sensors currently in the Nikon D7000 and Pentax K5. This fact shows in the dynamic range and color depth numbers, where the new G3 gets absolutely trounced1 by the K5, D7000, Alpha A580, and... well, you get the idea.

The new G3 is an upgrade, but it's also a downgrade in some ways. It's not quite enough to pull someone away from traditional DSLR cameras, and it's not nearly enough to make someone who's already invested in the system spend the money on the camera when better cameras are likely on the horizon. Cameras that, I dunno', use a current sensor.

1: You can find these data at

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