Panasonic GH3 vs G6
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in September 2012 and April 2013. Both the GH3 and the G6 are mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras that are equipped with a Four Thirds sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 15.9 megapixels. Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their sensors, their features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
|Panasonic GH3||Panasonic G6|
|Mirrorless system camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Micro Four Thirds lenses||Micro Four Thirds lenses|
|15.9 MP, Four Thirds Sensor||15.9 MP, Four Thirds Sensor|
|1080/60p Video||1080/60p Video|
|ISO 200-12800 (125-25600)||ISO 160-12800 (160-25600)|
|Electronic viewfinder (1746k dots)||Electronic viewfinder (1440k dots)|
|3.0" LCD, 614k dots||3.0" LCD, 1036k dots|
|Swivel touchscreen||Swivel touchscreen|
|6 shutter flaps per second||7 shutter flaps per second|
|Weathersealed body||Not weather sealed|
|540 shots per battery charge||340 shots per battery charge|
|133 x 93 x 82 mm, 550 g||122 x 85 x 71 mm, 390 g|
Body comparison: Panasonic GH3 vs G6
The physical size and weight of the Panasonic GH3 and the Panasonic G6 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter. You can also use the toggle button to switch to a percentage comparison if you prefer that the measures are being expressed in relative terms (in this case, the camera on the left – the GH3 – represents the basis or 100 percent across all the size and weight measures).
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Panasonic G6 is notably smaller (16 percent) than the Panasonic GH3. Moreover, the G6 is markedly lighter (29 percent) than the GH3. It is worth mentioning in this context that the GH3 is splash and dust resistant, while the G6 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. In this particular case, both cameras feature the same lens mount, so that they can use the same lenses. You can compare the optics available in the Micro Four Thirds Lens Catalog. Mirrorless cameras, such as the two under consideration, have the additional advantage of having a short flange to focal plane distance, which makes it possible to mount many lenses from other systems onto the camera via adapters.
The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. If you would like to visualize and compare a different camera combination, just use the right or left arrows in the table to switch to the respective camera. Alternatively, you can also navigate to the CAM-parator app and make your selection from the full list of cameras there.
|Panasonic GH3»||5.2 in||3.7 in||3.2 in||19.4 oz||540||Y||Sep 2012||1,299||-||Panasonic GH3|
|Panasonic G6«||4.8 in||3.3 in||2.8 in||13.8 oz||340||n||Apr 2013||599||-||Panasonic G6|
|Olympus E-M5 II« »||4.9 in||3.3 in||1.8 in||16.5 oz||310||Y||Feb 2015||1,099||Olympus E-M5 II|
|Olympus E-M1« »||5.1 in||3.7 in||2.5 in||17.5 oz||350||Y||Sep 2013||1,399||-||Olympus E-M1|
|Olympus E-M5« »||4.8 in||3.5 in||1.7 in||15.0 oz||360||Y||Feb 2012||1,299||-||Olympus E-M5|
|Panasonic GH5s« »||5.5 in||3.9 in||3.4 in||23.3 oz||440||Y||Jan 2018||2,499||Panasonic GH5s|
|Panasonic G85« »||5.0 in||3.5 in||2.9 in||17.8 oz||330||Y||Sep 2016||899||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic G7« »||4.9 in||3.4 in||3.0 in||14.5 oz||350||n||May 2015||649||-||Panasonic G7|
|Panasonic GX8« »||5.2 in||3.1 in||2.5 in||17.2 oz||330||Y||Jul 2015||1,199||-||Panasonic GX8|
|Panasonic GH4« »||5.2 in||3.7 in||3.3 in||19.8 oz||500||Y||Feb 2014||1,499||-||Panasonic GH4|
|Panasonic GF6« »||4.4 in||2.6 in||1.5 in||11.4 oz||340||n||Apr 2013||499||-||Panasonic GF6|
|Panasonic GM1« »||3.9 in||2.2 in||1.2 in||7.2 oz||230||n||Oct 2013||749||-||Panasonic GM1|
|Panasonic GX7« »||4.8 in||2.8 in||2.2 in||14.2 oz||350||n||Aug 2013||999||-||Panasonic GX7|
|Panasonic G5« »||4.7 in||3.3 in||2.8 in||14.0 oz||320||n||Jul 2012||599||-||Panasonic G5|
|Panasonic G3« »||4.5 in||3.3 in||1.9 in||11.9 oz||270||n||May 2011||599||-||Panasonic G3|
|Panasonic GH2« »||4.9 in||3.5 in||3.0 in||15.6 oz||330||n||Sep 2010||1,499||-||Panasonic GH2|
The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The retail prices at the time of the camera’s release place the model in the market relative to other models in the producer’s line-up and the competition. The G6 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 54 percent) than the GH3, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.
Sensor comparison: Panasonic GH3 vs G6
The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Both cameras under consideration feature a Four Thirds sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 2.0. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.
The two cameras under review do not only share the same sensor size, but also offer an identical resolution of 15.9 megapixels. This similarity in sensor specs implies that both the GH3 and the G6 have the same pixel density, as well as the same pixel size. It should, however, be noted that the G6 is a somewhat more recent model (by 7 months) than the GH3, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 200 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 125-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6 are ISO 160 to ISO 12800, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 160-25600..
Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for many cameras. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). Of the two cameras under review, the GH3 has a notably higher overall DXO score than the G6 (overall score 10 points higher), which gives it an advantage in terms of imaging quality. This advantage is based on 1.4 bits higher color depth, 0.9 EV in additional dynamic range, and 0.3 stops in additional low light sensitivity. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|Panasonic GH3»||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60p||22.7||12.4||812||71||Panasonic GH3|
|Panasonic G6«||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60p||21.3||11.5||639||61||Panasonic G6|
|Olympus E-M5 II« »||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60p||23.0||12.5||842||73||Olympus E-M5 II|
|Olympus E-M1« »||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||23.0||12.7||757||73||Olympus E-M1|
|Olympus E-M5« »||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60i||22.8||12.3||826||71||Olympus E-M5|
|Panasonic GH5s« »||Four Thirds||9.9||3680||2700||4K/60p||-||-||-||-||Panasonic GH5s|
|Panasonic G85« »||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||4K/30p||22.8||12.5||656||71||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic G7« »||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||4K/30p||-||-||-||-||Panasonic G7|
|Panasonic GX8« »||Four Thirds||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||23.5||12.6||806||75||Panasonic GX8|
|Panasonic GH4« »||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||4K/30p||23.2||12.8||791||74||Panasonic GH4|
|Panasonic GF6« »||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60i||20.7||10.6||622||54||Panasonic GF6|
|Panasonic GM1« »||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60i||22.3||11.7||660||66||Panasonic GM1|
|Panasonic GX7« »||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60p||22.6||12.2||718||70||Panasonic GX7|
|Panasonic G5« »||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60p||-||-||-||-||Panasonic G5|
|Panasonic G3« »||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60i||21.0||10.6||667||56||Panasonic G3|
|Panasonic GH2« »||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60i||21.2||11.3||655||60||Panasonic GH2|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/60p).
Feature comparison: Panasonic GH3 vs G6
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The two cameras under consideration are similar with respect to both having an electronic viewfinder. However, the one in the GH3 offers a higher resolution than the one in the G6 (1746k vs 1440k dots). The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Panasonic GH3, the Panasonic G6, and comparable cameras.
|Panasonic GH3»||1746||n||3.0||614||swivel||Y||4000||6.0||Y||n||Panasonic GH3|
|Panasonic G6«||1440||n||3.0||1036||swivel||Y||4000||7.0||Y||n||Panasonic G6|
|Olympus E-M5 II« »||2360||n||3.0||1037||swivel||Y||8000||10.0||n||Y||Olympus E-M5 II|
|Olympus E-M1« »||2360||n||3.0||1037||tilting||Y||8000||10.0||n||Y||Olympus E-M1|
|Olympus E-M5« »||1440||n||3.0||610||tilting||Y||4000||9.0||n||Y||Olympus E-M5|
|Panasonic GH5s« »||3680||n||3.2||1620||swivel||Y||8000||12.0||n||n||Panasonic GH5s|
|Panasonic G85« »||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||4000||9.0||Y||Y||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic G7« »||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||4000||7.0||Y||n||Panasonic G7|
|Panasonic GX8« »||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||8000||10.0||n||Y||Panasonic GX8|
|Panasonic GH4« »||2359||n||3.0||1036||swivel||Y||8000||12.0||Y||n||Panasonic GH4|
|Panasonic GF6« »||-||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||4000||4.2||Y||n||Panasonic GF6|
|Panasonic GM1« »||-||n||3.0||1036||fixed||Y||500||5.0||Y||n||Panasonic GM1|
|Panasonic GX7« »||2760||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||8000||5.0||Y||Y||Panasonic GX7|
|Panasonic G5« »||1440||n||3.0||920||swivel||Y||4000||6.0||Y||n||Panasonic G5|
|Panasonic G3« »||1440||n||3.0||460||swivel||Y||4000||4.0||Y||n||Panasonic G3|
|Panasonic GH2« »||1534||n||3.0||460||swivel||n||4000||3.0||Y||n||Panasonic GH2|
The reported shutter speed and shutter burst refer to the use of the mechanical shutter. In addition, the G6 features an electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the GH3 and the G6 write their files to SDXC cards.
Connectivity comparison: Panasonic GH3 vs G6
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 and Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Panasonic GH3»||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic GH3|
|Panasonic G6«||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Panasonic G6|
|Olympus E-M5 II« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Olympus E-M5 II|
|Olympus E-M1« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Olympus E-M1|
|Olympus E-M5« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Olympus E-M5|
|Panasonic GH5s« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||full||3.1||Y||-||Y||Panasonic GH5s|
|Panasonic G85« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic G7« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic G7|
|Panasonic GX8« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Panasonic GX8|
|Panasonic GH4« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||Y||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Panasonic GH4|
|Panasonic GF6« »||-||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Panasonic GF6|
|Panasonic GM1« »||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic GM1|
|Panasonic GX7« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Panasonic GX7|
|Panasonic G5« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Panasonic G5|
|Panasonic G3« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Panasonic G3|
|Panasonic GH2« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-||Panasonic GH2|
It is notable that the GH3 has a headphone jack, which is not present on the G6 This port makes it possible to attach external headphones and monitor the quality of sound during the recording process.
Both the GH3 and the G6 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The GH3 was replaced by the Panasonic GH4, while the G6 was followed by the Panasonic G7.
Review summary: Panasonic GH3 vs G6
So what is the bottom line? Is the Panasonic GH3 better than the Panasonic G6 or vice versa? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.
Arguments in favor of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3:
- Better image quality: Scores markedly higher (10 points) in the DXO overall assessment.
- Richer colors: Generates images with noticeably better colors (1.4 bits more color depth).
- More dynamic range: Captures a larger spectrum of light and dark details (0.9 EV of extra DR).
- Better low-light sensitivity: Requires less light for good images (0.3 stops ISO advantage).
- Better sound control: Has a headphone port that enables audio monitoring while recording.
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (1746k vs 1440k dots).
- Longer lasting: Can take more shots (540 versus 340) on a single battery charge.
- Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in September 2012).
Reasons to prefer the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6:
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1036k vs 614k dots).
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (7 vs 6 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
- More compact: Is smaller (122x85mm vs 133x93mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 160g or 29 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
- Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (54 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Was introduced somewhat (7 months) more recently.
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the GH3 comes out slightly ahead of the G6 (9 : 8 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding on a new camera.
In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the GH3 or the G6 handle or perform in practice. User reviews that are available, for instance, at amazon can sometimes shed light on these issues, but such feedback is all too often partial, inconsistent, and inaccurate.
Expert reviews: Panasonic GH3 vs G6
This is why expert reviews are important. The adjacent table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). The full reviews are available by clicking on the site logo in the table header.
|Panasonic GH3»||HiRec||79/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||1,299||-||Panasonic GH3|
|Panasonic G6«||HiRec||-||5/5||-||4.5/5||Apr 2013||599||-||Panasonic G6|
|Olympus E-M5 II« »||HiRec||81/100||5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Feb 2015||1,099||Olympus E-M5 II|
|Olympus E-M1« »||HiRec||84/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2013||1,399||-||Olympus E-M1|
|Olympus E-M5« »||HiRec||80/100||4.5/5||5/5||5/5||Feb 2012||1,299||-||Olympus E-M5|
|Panasonic GH5s« »||-||84/100||4.5/5||-||4.5/5||Jan 2018||2,499||Panasonic GH5s|
|Panasonic G85« »||HiRec||84/100||5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2016||899||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic G7« »||HiRec||80/100||5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||May 2015||649||-||Panasonic G7|
|Panasonic GX8« »||Rec||82/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Jul 2015||1,199||-||Panasonic GX8|
|Panasonic GH4« »||HiRec||85/100||5/5||5/5||5/5||Feb 2014||1,499||-||Panasonic GH4|
|Panasonic GF6« »||HiRec||-||4.5/5||-||4.5/5||Apr 2013||499||-||Panasonic GF6|
|Panasonic GM1« »||Rec||78/100||5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||749||-||Panasonic GM1|
|Panasonic GX7« »||Rec||79/100||5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Aug 2013||999||-||Panasonic GX7|
|Panasonic G5« »||HiRec||-||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jul 2012||599||-||Panasonic G5|
|Panasonic G3« »||HiRec||75/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||5/5||May 2011||599||-||Panasonic G3|
|Panasonic GH2« »||HiRec||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Sep 2010||1,499||-||Panasonic GH2|
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? If you would like to see a different side-by-side camera review, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. An an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.
- Leica M9 vs Panasonic GH2
- Nikon 1 J4 vs Panasonic G7
- Nikon D3 vs Canon 1D Mark II
- Nikon D3300 vs Panasonic GX800
- Nikon D500 vs Nikon D3300
- Nikon D700 vs Panasonic FZ2500
- Nikon D700 vs Pentax K-70
- Olympus PEN-F vs Panasonic GH4
- Panasonic G85 vs Panasonic GX850
- Panasonic TZ100 vs Panasonic LX15
- Pentax Q vs Canon 80D
- Ricoh GR II vs Ricoh WG-60
Specifications: Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic G6
|Camera Model||Panasonic GH3||Panasonic G6|
|Camera Type||Mirrorless system camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||Micro Four Thirds lenses||Micro Four Thirds lenses|
|Launch Date||September 2012||April 2013|
|Launch Price||USD 1299||USD 599|
|Sensor Format||Four Thirds Sensor||Four Thirds Sensor|
|Sensor Size||17.3 x 13.0 mm||17.3 x 13.0 mm|
|Sensor Area||224.9 mm2||224.9 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||21.6 mm||21.6 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||15.9 Megapixels||15.9 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4608 x 3456 pixels||4608 x 3456 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||3.76 μm||3.76 μm|
|Pixel Density||7.08 MP/cm2||7.08 MP/cm2|
|Movie Capability||1080/60p Video||1080/60p Video|
|ISO Setting||200-12800 ISO||160-12800 ISO|
|ISO Boost||125-25600 ISO||160-25600 ISO|
|Image Processor||Venus VII FHD||Venus|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Resolution||1746k dots||1440k dots|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0 inch||3.0 inch|
|LCD Resolution||614k dots||1036k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Swivel screen||Swivel screen|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/4000s||1/4000s|
|Continuous Shooting||6 shutter flaps/s||7 shutter flaps/s|
|Silent Shooting||no E-Shutter||Electronic Shutter|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||mini HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Microphone Port||External MIC port||External MIC port|
|Headphone Socket||Headphone port||Headphone port|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Near-Field Communication||no NFC||NFC built-in|
|Environmental Sealing||Weathersealed body||Not weather sealed|
|Battery Type||DMW-BLF19 power pack||DMW-BLC12 power pack|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||540 shots per charge||340 shots per charge|
133 x 93 x 82 mm
(5.2 x 3.7 x 3.2 in)
122 x 85 x 71 mm
(4.8 x 3.3 x 2.8 in)
|Camera Weight||550 g (19.4 oz)||390 g (13.8 oz)|
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