Panasonic Lumix DMC-G10 Review

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G10  Review
This is the latest in our series of new 'Quick Reviews.' We will be using this format for cameras that are operationally similar and identical in terms of output to models we've already reviewed. We test to confirm the image quality is identical (noise tests and shots of our 'compared to' studio scene at all ISOs), then concentrate the review on the differences between the two cameras. To learn everything about the camera you are interested in we recommend reading not only the Quick Review but also the full review of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2.

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-G10 is (with the G2) the latest of Panasonic's pioneering G-series mirrorless system cameras. The G10 is a new camera, but in many ways it represents a synthesis of elements from other models in the series. The G10 has the same sensor as the G2, and like the original G1 it is styled to resemble a 'traditional' DSLR, but like the GF1, its LCD screen is fixed, not articulated. Unlike the GF1, the G10 offers a built-in EVF (of the same specification as the optional DMW-LVF1E viewfinder unit which is available for the GF1), but its resolution is lower than that of the G1, GH1 and G2, at 202k dots pixels compared to 1.4 million. The G10's EVF is of the more conventional grid type, too, as opposed to the field-sequential display used in the G2.

Basically then, the G10 is a stripped-down version of the G2, aimed squarely at entry-level users. The essentials remain the same (sensor, AF/metering system) but the G10 lacks the more expensive extras found in the higher-end model such as a touch-sensitive articulated LCD screen and high-resolution EVF. As such, the G10 is a 'budget' model, and represents Panasonic's first real attempt with a Micro Four Thirds camera to compete with entry-level DSLRs. Can it compete with the likes of the Canon EOS 1000D and Nikon D3000? Read on to find out.
Compared to Panasonic DMC-G2 - key differences

The G10 is a stripped-down version of the more expensive G2, both in terms of ergonomics and some aspects of its specification. Here are the main differences:

    * Approximately 32g lighter
    * Slightly different button/switch layout on topplate
    * No automatic EVF/LCD switch
    * Significantly lower resolution EVF (202K dots compared to 1.4 million dots, and not field-sequential)
    * Fixed, non touch-sensitive LCD screen
    * No AVCHD (lite) recording option in movie mode (motion JPEG only)
    * No plug for external microphone
    * No dedicated movie recording button (movie mode accessed from exposure mode dial instead)

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