Panasonic GM5 vs GX7
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM5 and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7 are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in September 2014 and August 2013. Both the GM5 and the GX7 are mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras that are equipped with a Four Thirds sensor. Both cameras offer a resolution of 15.8 megapixels.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM5 and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size and weight of the Panasonic GM5 and the Panasonic GX7. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
Both cameras are available in two different colors (black, silver).
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Panasonic GX7 is considerably larger (47 percent) than the Panasonic GM5. Moreover, the GX7 is substantially heavier (91 percent) than the GM5. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the GM5 nor the GX7 are weather-sealed.
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. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, you can use the CAM-parator app to select your camera combination among a large number of options.
|1.||Panasonic GM5||99 mm||60 mm||36 mm||211 g||220||n||Sep 2014||749||ebay.com|
|2.||Panasonic GX7||123 mm||71 mm||55 mm||402 g||350||n||Aug 2013||999||ebay.com|
|3.||Olympus E-M10||119 mm||82 mm||46 mm||396 g||320||n||Jan 2014||699||ebay.com|
|4.||Olympus E-PL7||115 mm||67 mm||38 mm||357 g||350||n||Aug 2014||599||ebay.com|
|5.||Olympus E-P5||122 mm||69 mm||37 mm||420 g||330||n||May 2013||999||ebay.com|
|6.||Panasonic GX85||122 mm||71 mm||44 mm||426 g||290||n||Apr 2016||799||amazon.com|
|7.||Panasonic G7||125 mm||86 mm||77 mm||410 g||350||n||May 2015||649||ebay.com|
|8.||Panasonic GH4||133 mm||93 mm||84 mm||560 g||500||Y||Feb 2014||1,499||ebay.com|
|9.||Panasonic LX100||115 mm||66 mm||55 mm||393 g||300||n||Sep 2014||899||ebay.com|
|10.||Panasonic G6||122 mm||85 mm||71 mm||390 g||340||n||Apr 2013||599||ebay.com|
|11.||Panasonic GM1||99 mm||55 mm||30 mm||204 g||230||n||Oct 2013||749||ebay.com|
|12.||Panasonic GX1||116 mm||68 mm||39 mm||318 g||320||n||Nov 2011||699||ebay.com|
|13.||Panasonic GH2||124 mm||90 mm||76 mm||442 g||330||n||Sep 2010||899||ebay.com|
|14.||Ricoh GR II||117 mm||63 mm||35 mm||251 g||320||n||Jun 2015||699||ebay.com|
|15.||Ricoh GR||117 mm||61 mm||35 mm||245 g||290||n||Apr 2013||799||ebay.com|
|Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The GM5 was launched at a somewhat lower price (by 25 percent) than the GX7, which makes it more attractive for photographers on a tight budget. 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.
The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the 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 15.8 megapixels. This similarity in sensor specs implies that both the GM5 and the GX7 have the same pixel density, as well as the same pixel size. It should, however, be noted that the GM5 is a somewhat more recent model (by 1 year and 1 month) than the GX7, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM5 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 200 to ISO 25600, which can be extended to ISO 100-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7 are ISO 125 to ISO 25600 (no boost).
Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors. Both cameras use a Bayer filter for capturing RGB colors on a square grid of photosensors. This arrangement is found in most digital cameras.
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 consideration, the GX7 has a markedly higher DXO score than the GM5 (overall score 4 points higher), which will translate into better image quality. The advantage is based on 0.5 bits higher color depth, 0.5 EV in additional dynamic range, and 0 stops of reduced low light sensitivity. The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.
|1.||Panasonic GM5||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60p||22.1||11.7||721||66|
|2.||Panasonic GX7||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60p||22.6||12.2||718||70|
|3.||Olympus E-M10||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||22.8||12.3||884||72|
|4.||Olympus E-PL7||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||22.7||12.4||873||72|
|5.||Olympus E-P5||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||22.8||12.4||895||72|
|6.||Panasonic GX85||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||4K/30p||22.9||12.6||662||71|
|7.||Panasonic G7||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||4K/30p||22.8||12.4||904||71|
|8.||Panasonic GH4||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||4K/30p||23.2||12.8||791||74|
|9.||Panasonic LX100||Four Thirds||12.7||4112||3088||4K/30p||22.3||12.5||553||67|
|10.||Panasonic G6||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60p||21.3||11.5||639||61|
|11.||Panasonic GM1||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60i||22.3||11.7||660||66|
|12.||Panasonic GX1||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60p||20.8||10.6||703||55|
|13.||Panasonic GH2||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60i||21.2||11.3||655||60|
|14.||Ricoh GR II||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||1080/30p||23.6||13.7||1078||80|
|Note: DXO values in italics represent estimates based on sensor size and age.|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. 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).
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The two cameras under review are similar with respect to both having an electronic viewfinder. However, the one in the GX7 offers a substantially higher resolution than the one in the GM5 (2760k vs 1166k dots). The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Panasonic GM5 and Panasonic GX7 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.
|1.||Panasonic GM5||1166||n||3.0 / 921||fixed||Y||1/500s||5.8/s||n||n|
|2.||Panasonic GX7||2760||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/8000s||5.0/s||Y||Y|
|3.||Olympus E-M10||1440||n||3.0 / 1037||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0/s||Y||Y|
|4.||Olympus E-PL7||optional||n||3.0 / 1037||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0/s||n||Y|
|5.||Olympus E-P5||optional||n||3.0 / 1037||tilting||Y||1/8000s||9.0/s||Y||Y|
|6.||Panasonic GX85||2765||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0/s||Y||Y|
|7.||Panasonic G7||2360||n||3.0 / 1040||swivel||Y||1/4000s||7.0/s||Y||n|
|8.||Panasonic GH4||2359||n||3.0 / 1036||swivel||Y||1/8000s||12.0/s||Y||n|
|9.||Panasonic LX100||2764||n||3.0 / 921||fixed||n||1/4000s||11.0/s||n||Y|
|10.||Panasonic G6||1440||n||3.0 / 1036||swivel||Y||1/4000s||7.0/s||Y||n|
|11.||Panasonic GM1||none||n||3.0 / 1036||fixed||Y||1/500s||5.0/s||Y||n|
|12.||Panasonic GX1||optional||n||3.0 / 460||fixed||Y||1/4000s||4.2/s||Y||n|
|13.||Panasonic GH2||1534||n||3.0 / 460||swivel||n||1/4000s||3.0/s||Y||n|
|14.||Ricoh GR II||optional||n||3.0 / 1230||fixed||n||1/4000s||4.0/s||Y||n|
|15.||Ricoh GR||optional||n||3.0 / 1230||fixed||n||1/4000s||4.0/s||Y||n|
|Notes: *) Information refers to the mechanical shutter, unless the camera only has an electronic one.|
One feature that differentiates the GX7 and the GM5 is in-body image stabilization (IBIS). The GX7 reduces the risk of handshake-induced blur with all attached lenses, while the GM5 offers no blur reduction with lenses that themselves do not provide optical image stabilization.
The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, both cameras under consideration feature 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).
The Panasonic GM5 and the Panasonic GX7 both have an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the GM5 and the GX7 write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.
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-GM5 and Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
Mic / Speaker
|1.||Panasonic GM5||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|2.||Panasonic GX7||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|3.||Olympus E-M10||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|4.||Olympus E-PL7||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|5.||Olympus E-P5||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|6.||Panasonic GX85||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|7.||Panasonic G7||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|8.||Panasonic GH4||Y||stereo / mono||Y||Y||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|9.||Panasonic LX100||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|10.||Panasonic G6||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|11.||Panasonic GM1||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|12.||Panasonic GX1||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|13.||Panasonic GH2||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|14.||Ricoh GR II||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|15.||Ricoh GR||Y||mono / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||-||-||-|
Both the GM5 and the GX7 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on ebay. The GX7 was replaced by the Panasonic GX85, while the GM5 does not have a direct successor. Further information on the features and operation of the GM5 and GX7 can be found, respectively, in the Panasonic GM5 Manual (free pdf) or the online Panasonic GX7 Manual.
So what conclusions can be drawn? Which of the two cameras – the Panasonic GM5 or the Panasonic GX7 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.
Advantages of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GM5:
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (5.8 vs 5 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More compact: Is smaller (99x60mm vs 123x71mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Less heavy: Is lighter (by 191g or 48 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced segment (25 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Is somewhat more recent (announced 1 year and 1 month after the GX7).
Reasons to prefer the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7:
- Better image quality: Scores markedly higher (4 points) in the DXO overall evaluation.
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (2760k vs 1166k dots).
- Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.70x vs 0.46x).
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1040k vs 921k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/500s) to freeze action.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (350 versus 220) out of a single battery charge.
- Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
- Easier fill-in: Has a small integrated flash to brighten shadows of backlit subjects.
- Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in August 2013).
If the count of individual advantages (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the GX7 is the clear winner of the contest (11 : 5 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Panasonic GM5 and the Panasonic GX7 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the GM5 and the GX7 in practical situations. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.
This is where reviews by experts come in. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], digitalcameraworld [DCW], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
|1.||Panasonic GM5||3.5/5||+||..||77/100||5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2014||749||ebay.com|
|2.||Panasonic GX7||4/5||+||..||79/100||5/5||5/5||Aug 2013||999||ebay.com|
|3.||Olympus E-M10||4/5||..||..||80/100||5/5||5/5||Jan 2014||699||ebay.com|
|4.||Olympus E-PL7||4/5||+||..||..||5/5||4/5||Aug 2014||599||ebay.com|
|5.||Olympus E-P5||5/5||+ +||..||78/100||4.5/5||5/5||May 2013||999||ebay.com|
|6.||Panasonic GX85||4.5/5||+ +||..||82/100||5/5||5/5||Apr 2016||799||amazon.com|
|7.||Panasonic G7||4/5||+ +||..||80/100||5/5||4.5/5||May 2015||649||ebay.com|
|8.||Panasonic GH4||5/5||+ +||..||85/100||5/5||5/5||Feb 2014||1,499||ebay.com|
|9.||Panasonic LX100||5/5||+ +||..||85/100||5/5||5/5||Sep 2014||899||ebay.com|
|10.||Panasonic G6||4/5||+ +||..||..||5/5||4.5/5||Apr 2013||599||ebay.com|
|11.||Panasonic GM1||3/5||+||..||78/100||5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2013||749||ebay.com|
|12.||Panasonic GX1||3/5||+||..||77/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Nov 2011||699||ebay.com|
|13.||Panasonic GH2||5/5||+ +||..||79/100||4.5/5||5/5||Sep 2010||899||ebay.com|
|14.||Ricoh GR II||..||..||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2015||699||ebay.com|
|15.||Ricoh GR||5/5||..||..||79/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Apr 2013||799||ebay.com|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just use the search menu below. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.
- Canon 300D vs Panasonic GM5
- Canon 450D vs Panasonic GX7
- Fujifilm X-A5 vs Panasonic GX7
- Fujifilm XF10 vs Panasonic GM5
- Leica Digilux 3 vs Panasonic GM5
- Nikon D40X vs Panasonic GM5
- Nikon D810 vs Panasonic GX7
- Panasonic G5 vs Panasonic GM5
- Panasonic GM5 vs Pentax K-3 II
- Panasonic GX7 vs Sony A58
- Panasonic GX7 vs Sony A7R IV
- Panasonic GX7 vs Sony A99 II
Specifications: Panasonic GM5 vs Panasonic GX7
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Panasonic GM5||Panasonic GX7|
|Camera Type||Mirrorless system camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||Micro Four Thirds lenses||Micro Four Thirds lenses|
|Launch Date||September 2014||August 2013|
|Launch Price||USD 749||USD 999|
|Sensor Specs||Panasonic GM5||Panasonic GX7|
|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||15.8 Megapixels||15.8 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4592 x 3448 pixels||4592 x 3448 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||3.77 μm||3.77 μm|
|Pixel Density||7.04 MP/cm2||7.04 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||Anti-Alias filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/60p Video||1080/60p Video|
|ISO Setting||200 - 25,600 ISO||125 - 25,600 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100 - 25,600 ISO||no Enhancement|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||66||70|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||22.1||22.6|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||11.7||12.2|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||721||718|
|Screen Specs||Panasonic GM5||Panasonic GX7|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||1166k dots||2760k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||921k dots||1040k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Panasonic GM5||Panasonic GX7|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||Focus Peaking|
|Max Shutter Speed (mechanical)||1/500s||1/8000s|
|Continuous Shooting||5.8 shutter flaps/s||5 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||up to 1/16000s||up to 1/8000s|
|Time-Lapse Photography||Intervalometer built-in||Intervalometer built-in|
|Image Stabilization||Lens stabilization only||In-body stabilization|
|Fill Flash||no On-Board Flash||Built-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-I||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Panasonic GM5||Panasonic GX7|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Near-Field Communication||no NFC||NFC built-in|
|Body Specs||Panasonic GM5||Panasonic GX7|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||220 shots per charge||350 shots per charge|
99 x 60 x 36 mm
(3.9 x 2.4 x 1.4 in)
123 x 71 x 55 mm
(4.8 x 2.8 x 2.2 in)
|Camera Weight||211 g (7.4 oz)||402 g (14.2 oz)|
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