Panasonic LUMIX DMC-G3


A medium powerful camera

The latest camera from Panasonic, the Lumix DMC-G3, was a bit of a disappointment for loyal fans of the company’s products. This was due to the fact that its manufacturers decided to remove some of the direct control keys, simplify the handling and introduce a touchscreen control. Despite all of this, does this camera perform better than others in its class? We tested it and here is our review.

3.0″ LCD touchscreen

First off, let’s take a look at the device’s design. The Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3 is lighter and thinner than the G2 with its 4.5″ x 3.3″ x 1.8″ and 583g. The body looked and felt solid and the grip area made the camera very easy to handle and move around. As a con, the soft rubber texture on the front end has very little space for your thumb and this means that a finger may slip on a setting you wouldn’t want to use. The front houses a 14-42mm kit lens and an AF-assist lamp sits on the upper right corner; the rear comes with 3.0″ LCD touchscreen, a four-way navigator, a DISP. /Fn1 button, record button, rear dial, electronic viewfinder and playback. The display with its 460K dots has an articulating joint that helps users easily access controls and also shoot from unusual angles. Panasonic-LUMIX-DMC-G3

A lot of settings included

The touchscreen helped us, during our test for this review, do the following: snap a picture, make settings changes, control the new pinpoint focus mode. What is more, the intuitive and easy to use interface had a panel that could be used to control the playback zoom/pan function and switch between images. What we liked the most about the Lumix DMC-G3 was the fact that it offered more than one way to access and adjust whatever options we used the most; if we wanted to see the sensitivity settings, all we had to do was touch the Quick Menu or the shortcut key on the rear. The Quick Menu was very easy to use and navigate; it could also be customized. The mode dial that was absent from the GF2 is present on this model. It offered the possibility to set the device to the various advanced exposure modes.

Venus Engine VI FHD processor

The processor used by this gadget is the well-known Venus Engine VI FHD CPU that comes with improved performance, especially in the case of the autofocus speed. The electronic viewfinder has an improved switching speed, which translates into better color breakup resistance. The eye sensor will be confusing to people; this one detected movement when we held the device close to our eye and activated the EVF while shutting the main LCD. The Panasonic DMC-G3 sports 17 interesting functions.

Decent overall performance

Overall performance was decent. Photos were detailed, noise wasn’t visible and colors were nice (except those in the Standard Photo Style). Pictures taken between ISO 160-6400 looked good, but those at higher ISOs were somewhat soft and watercolor-like. As usual, raw stills looked much better. The Panasonic DMC-G3 camera doesn’t sport raw conversion software; what it does have is a SilkyPix one, which is not as good as the raw one. In dim lighting, the device provides well exposed stills. The Intelligent D-Range might be the gadget’s best feature, because it gives no increase in noise levels or color shift. Another very good option is the Advanced Intelligent Resolution, which enhanced details without artifacts in even-toned parts. Videos looked good.

Review conclusion

As we near our review, all we can say is that, while the latest Lumix DMC-G3 might not be the best cameras out there, it certainly isn’t the worst.

Technical specifications

Sensor typeLive MOS 4 / 3
Sensor size17.3 x 13.0 mm
Full-frame sensornot
Number of pixels16 million pixels
Resolution image4:3: 1824 x 1368-4592 x 3448, 3:2: 1824 x 12160 to 4576 x 3056, 16:9: 1824 x 1024-4976 x 2800, 1:1 1712 x 1712-3424 x 3424
High Definition CompatibilityYes, Full HD 1080i
Shutter speed60 sec. to 1 / 4000; Bulb (up to approx. 2 min.)
Burst ShootingYes
Burst2i / s at full resolution with Live View
Image StabilizerDepending on lens optical stabilization
Compatibility of opticalG Micro System Panasonic aims 4:3
Lens Aperturef/3.5 – 5.6
Min focal length the lens in mm14
Max focal length of lens in mm42
Equivalent focal 24×36From 28 to 84 mm
Minimum focusing.30 cm
ISO100 – 6400
Additional sensitivityIntelligent ISO
Internal MemoryNot
Storage MediaSD, SDHC, SDXC
Included MemoryNo
Image File FormatJPEG (Exif 2.3), RAW, MPO (with 3D view)
Other features first goalLens Construction: 12 elements in 9 groups (1 aspherical lens), Bayonet Micro 4 / 3; Optical stabilization, angle: 75 ° – 29 °, 7 rounded diaphragm blades, open mini. : F/22; Max Magnification. : 0.16 x / 0.32 equivalent 35 mm Ø filter: 52 mm Dimensions: Ø x length. : 60 x 64 mm and weighs 165g.
Screen size3 “
ViewfinderLCD touch screen, and Adjustable Electronic viewfinder EVF 1.44 Mp
FlashAuto, forced, switchable, Red-eye reduction, Slow Sync
External flash syncYes
Face detectorYes
Video RecordingYes Full HD AVCHD format Lite, QuickTime Motion JPEG
Audio RecordingYes, in QuickTime
Housing tropicalizedNot
Direct printingPictBridge
Interface (s)USB 2.0, Video PAL & NTSC, HDMI 1.3 mini C Type
Battery lifeLi-ion ID-Security (7.2 V, 1010 mAh) Battery life with Lumix 14-42 mm stabilized: approximately 270 images with LUMIX stabilized 45-200 mm: 250 images under CIPA standard
Software included on CD-ROMPhotoFun Studio 6.2 HD Edition, SILKYPIX Developer Studio 3.1 SE, Super LoiLoScope (verse test), USB Driver
Dimensions (WxDxH) in mm115 x 47 x 84 mm (body only)
Net weight in g336 g