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Panasonic GF6

It’s not every day that you get a non-announcement, but today is such a day. According to recent reports, Panasonic may not introduce new G and GF-series cameras this year. Why is that worth noticing, you may ask? Well quite simply because so far, both Micro Four Thirds camera series have had update cycles of about a year, and the last two models–the G6 and GF6–were both introduced a year ago in April 2013. That would make about now the time for an upgrade.

But according to this report over at 43rumors, Panasonic might not upgrade either series this year, which makes a lot of sense when you think about it. For one, they recently introduced the GM-series which kind of replaces the GF-series as the small entry-level Micro Four Thirds offering. That is, apart from its higher price tag. And instead of introducing a new G7 model, Panasonic will simply continue to offer the GH3 alongside the new GH4–at a discount. Which will basically make it the mid-level model.

Furthermore, considering that Panasonic has failed to make any profits from its photography business in the past years, it makes sense that they would try to streamline their portfolio. After all, the company is serious about axing divisions that fail to make any profits by next year, and unfortunately its photography business looks like a candidate for that. By streamlining its portfolio and concentrating on the existing models instead of investing in the development of new models, Panasonic’s AV department can save money which will have a positive effect on its earnings report later on.

Let’s pray that this strategy–provided the 43rumors report is accurate–works out and there will be Panasonic cameras and lenses in the future.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

DxOMark have just finished testing the Panasonic GH4 (or rather, its sensor,) and their results are hardly surprising. As it turns out, the GH4 is the best Micro Four Thirds camera currently available when it comes to pure sensor performance. With a total score of 74, it is three points ahead of its predecessor, the GH3, and even outperforms the acclaimed Olympus OM-D E-M1 by one point.

Further analysis is after the jump.

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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Panasonic GH3 product images (4 of 12)ISO 1001-200 sec at f - 5.6

UPDATE: Holy cow, these went quick! It seems that the Amazon GH3 deal was quite the thing with the photo community, as it’s already sold out. The camera is now back to US-$ 948, which is still $351.99 off the list price.

When we look at these incredible deals that our friends over at 43rumors dug out, it seems like Black Friday is already here, even though it’s still a couple days away. Currently, you’re able to buy the Panasonic GH3–the company’s current Micro Four Thirds flagship camera–for as little as US-$ 698. That’s $600 off the list price! Also, there are rebates on several Olympus cameras and lenses. Full list below.

Panasonic GH3 body: US-$ 698 at Amazon.com (SOLD OUT!)

Olympus OM-D E-M5 body: US-$ 799 ($200 off) at Amazon.com (black or silver)

Olympus PEN E-P5 body: US-$ 899 ($100 off) at Amazon.com (black, silver or white)

Olympus PEN E-PL5 body: US-$ 449 ($100.99 off) at Amazon.com (black, silver or white)

Olympus PEN E-PM2 body: US-$ 369.99 ($129.01 off) at Amazon.com (silver or white)

More Olympus rebates at Amazon.com (lenses and accessories)

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Micro Four Thirds High ISO comparison (4 of 4)ISO 1251-30 sec at f - 5.6

Three of the best Micro Four Thirds cameras currently out on the market all have been noted to exhibit exceptional high ISO image quality. Those three cameras are the Panasonic GH3, Olympus OMD EM5, and the Olympus EP5. Statements around the web have claimed that the cameras have the same sensor, but the firmware inside of these cameras is really what helps to determine the final image quality as well.

And in a very quick and super informal test, we decided to put the three up against one another.


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Screen Shot 2013-07-29 at 9.48.52 AM

DxOMark just released their findings on the brand new Olympus EP5. In summary:

– The EP5 beats the OMD EM5 and EPL5 in high ISO performance

– Outperforms the Panasonic GH3 in Color Depth and High ISO performance

– It can’t beat the Samsung Nx300 and Sony NEX 6

When we were in our briefing with Olympus on the EP5, they said that it was the same sensor as the OMD, and they didn’t state that there were ISO performance changes.

We’ve got the camera in for review right now, and we’re really liking it. Though in the end, we should really state and reiterate that it’s all still about what you can do with the camera–no lab test in the world simulates the real life experience of trying to shoot in a dark bar with a camera.

More of the findings and comparisons are after the jump.

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Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Panasonic 35-100mm f2.8 product photos (5 of 5)ISO 1001-80 sec at f - 5.0

If you’re looking for an excellent telephoto zoom lens for Micro Four Thirds, Panasonic has created the 35-100mm f2.8 to cover you–giving you the equivalent of a 70-200mm field of view. The lens boasts a plastic exterior with weather sealing gaskets all over. It features internal zooming to keep the package down to a minimum size. The 35-100mm f2.8 focuses extremely quick and also offers great image quality.

The lens is characterized not only by weather sealing and a constant aperture through the zoom range, but seven aperture blades, 18 elements in 13 groups, image stabilization, and when you put that all together you get one heck of a kick ass portrait lens for the Micro Four Thirds system.

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