The Real Life Lumix G5 Mirrorless Camera Review

The SMARTER Photographers want to know if the Panasonic Lumix G5 mirrorless camera is the right one for them. It’s the replacement for the popular G3 and is loaded with creative photo and video filter presets designed to create quality images with a sense of style. Using the wide line of Micro4/3 lenses from Lumix and Olympus as well as other brands, this little camera has some unique and attractive features for its $800 price tag. Is it worth the money? Could it be a replacement to your DSLR? If you have a G3 or an Olympus PEN system, is this the camera to move up to?


  1. says

    Hello WC ! I just got an Olympus Pen E-PL1 , kit lens 14-42, a Fotodiox adapter, & the For Dummies book on the Olympus PEN E-PL1 – I put on the Fotodiox adapter and my old Quanta Ray 500mm Catadioptric Mirror lens – On my E-PL1 mirrorless camera – The wind was blowing hard – it took me a few minutes to realize that I should put the centerpost down. But wow – Micro Four Thirds doubles the focal length of your old lenses ! – I got some pretty cool photos and videos !
    I’ll edit them up and make a show and post it to my YouTube site
    (that’s b “zero” d h r a n) where I post most of my videos – The more affordable PEN – EPL-1 is a dream come true for me ! — Hank Hogan
    PS Say hello to Cali for me – I love her presentations ! I’d so like to capture her image with my 14-42 kit lens !! Maybe you can do it for me ! If you do, then let me know so I can enjoy – Back to my reading on this rainy day in Arkansas !

  2. says

    Hi Ben,
    You are exactly right buddy. The mic jack (in my opinion) was excluded on purpose to make the soon to be launched GH3 more attractive for video shooters. I too think it’s a silly decision to omit it. The NEX 5R looks like a champ to me, and the Sony folks have been pestering me to come visit them in San Diego ASAP so they can show it to me and share a coupla other new toys. Interesting…
    Thanks Ben!

  3. says

    Hi Ray!
    Glad you liked the review. The GF3, now being replaced by the GF5, is a high quality camera with impressive features and pretty darned great overall performance. But… it’s made for the not-so-serious photographer and even though it’s part of the G series lineup, it’s got no viewfinder and is missing some other key components that make the micro 43 cameras SO good. My take is that if you need a small, travel camera with removeable lenses, the Lumix GX1 is the one. It has a slide-in EVF if you want it and is much speedier to shoot with that the GF3 or GF5. For me, the GF3 is a thumbs down and I would choose the G5 any day. Go with the G5?

  4. Profile photo of Benjamin J. Roethig says

    Great review yet again Will.

    Honestly, at $800 it might be a little pricey and the lack of an external mic jack is inexcusable in this price range. I’ll be interested to see how this compares to the recently announced and $150 cheaper NEX-5R.

  5. Ray says

    Hello Will,
    Thanks for the review. This was helpful. I am a novice moving away from my iPhone and other point and shoot cameras that I have used and wanted to skip the bulky DSLRs and move right into the compact mirror less space.
    My friends are loving the Lumix brand thus far and I like the look, feel and price of the, now older, Lumix GF3 as an entry level camera to get me started in the micro four thirds lenses and build the body later down the road to something like this G5 or better.

    What is your opinion of the GF3?