It may introduce a new name format for Panasonic but there’s quite a lot that seems familiar about the Panasonic Lumix GX800 (also known as the GX850 in the United States).
Inside, for instance there’s a 16Mp Four Thirds type sensor with no optical low-pass filter – just like the Panasonic GX80/GX85. More like the Panasonic GF8, however, there’s no viewfinder built-in.
Images are composed and reviewed on the 3-inch 1,040,000-dot screen that can be flipped up through 180 degrees for convenient selfie shooting. So far, I’ve only used it in very dull, over-cast conditions and it provided a good view. I’ll have to wait until I get a sample on a sunny day to see whether it is prone to reflections.
The GX800 is designed to be small, affordable and easy to use. To that end it has fairly limited number of buttons and dials and a responsive touch-screen.
However, there is a mode dial on the top-plate which makes it quick and easy to switch between exposure modes.
In addition to automatic options like Intelligent Auto (iA) and a collection of scene modes, there are the advanced options (program, shutter priority, aperture priority and manual) to suit experienced photographers.
There are also buttons to activate Panasonic’s 4K Photo and Post Focus (with the new Post Focus option) modes. Both of these are useful for spontaneous, fun photography.
Naturally, there’s also a small record button to start (4K and Full HD) video recording.
Panasonic GX800 Performance
I was able to use a GX800 briefly in very overcast conditions but it managed to focus pretty smartly on a relatively low-contrast subject and, bearing in mind the conditions, it managed to deliver an attractively bright, colourful image.
I’ve subsequently been able to examine a selection of images shot by Camera Jabber contributor, Amy Davies, and I’m happy to say that my initial impression of the GX800 seems well-founded.
It’s capable of producing very attractive images with good level of detail even at sensitivities as high as ISO 3200.
Furthermore, its general-purpose metering system performs well and manages to cope with large bright areas behind the main subject. In addition, the automatic white balance system delivers pleasant colours in a range of lighting conditions, not creating an excessive colourcast in household lighting.
Panasonic GX800 early verdict
I’ve yet to test it fully, but paired with the diminutive 12-32mm lens, the Panasonic GX800 is a real cutie of a camera.
It’s also capable of delivering high quality images in a range of conditions and with exposure modes to suit novices and enthusiasts, it has potential the find favour in both camps.
Novice photographers would find it a rewarding step-up from a phone, while experienced photographers may be drawn by the comparatively large sensor in the small body.