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Panasonic S1H Comparison Review

The Panasonic Lumix DC-S1H is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera that was revealed to the public in May 2019 and is equipped with a full frame sensor. It offers a resolution of 24 megapixel.

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Is the Panasonic S1H a good camera? The S1H has a Camera Elo of 3415. This very strong rating puts it among the elite group of camera grand masters. The S1H ranks among the top 10 percent of all mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (full frame cameras), the S1H also ranks among the top 10 percent.

Headline Specifications
Panasonic S1H
Mirrorless system camera
Leica L mount lenses
24 MP, Full Frame Sensor
6K/30p Video
ISO 100-51200 (50-204800)
Electronic viewfinder (5760k dots)
3.2" LCD, 2330k dots
Swivel touchscreen
9 shutter flaps per second
In-body stabilization
Weathersealed body
400 shots per battery charge
151 x 114 x 110 mm, 1052 g


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Read on to find out more about the camera's size, sensor, features, reception by expert reviewers, and how it compares to other digital cameras.

Body comparison with a credit card

The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size of the Panasonic S1H vis-à-vis a credit card. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Panasonic S1H vs credit card front
S1H versus credit card top view
S1H and credit card rear side

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Panasonic S1H alongside a set of comparators. If you want to review a camera pair side-by-side, just select a right-side comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible comparisons there.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Panasonic S1H 5.9 in 4.5 in 4.3 in 37.1 oz 400 Y May 2019 3,999 i i Panasonic S1H
 
Leica M-E Typ 240« » 5.5 in 3.1 in 1.7 in 24.0 oz .. Y Jun 2019 3,999 i i Leica M-E Typ 240
 
Nikon Z6« » 5.3 in 4.0 in 2.6 in 23.8 oz 310 Y Aug 2018 1,999 i i Nikon Z6
 
Olympus E-M1X« » 5.7 in 5.8 in 3.0 in 35.2 oz 870 Y Jan 2019 2,999 i i Olympus E-M1X
 
Panasonic S1« » 5.9 in 4.3 in 3.8 in 35.9 oz 400 Y Feb 2019 2,499 i i Panasonic S1
 
Panasonic S1R« » 5.9 in 4.3 in 3.8 in 35.8 oz 380 Y Feb 2019 3,699 i i Panasonic S1R
 
Panasonic G95« » 5.1 in 3.7 in 3.0 in 18.9 oz 290 Y Apr 2019 999 i i Panasonic G95
 
Pentax K-1 II« » 5.4 in 4.3 in 3.4 in 35.6 oz 670 Y Feb 2018 1,999 i i Pentax K-1 II
 
Sigma fp« » 4.4 in 2.8 in 1.8 in 14.9 oz .. Y Jul 2019 .. i i Sigma fp
 
Sony A7R IV« » 5.1 in 3.8 in 3.1 in 23.5 oz 670 Y Jul 2019 3,499 i i Sony A7R IV
 
Sony A7 III« » 5.0 in 3.8 in 2.9 in 22.9 oz 610 Y Feb 2018 1,999 i i Sony A7 III
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

The listed prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The Panasonic S1H was launched in the US market at a price of $3,999. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. 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.

Panasonic S1H:
Check Amazon price

Sensor comparison with a 35mm slide

The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels 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 tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.

The Panasonic S1H features a full frame sensor and has a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 1.0. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the Panasonic S1H among the large-sensor cameras that aim for top notch image quality.

Panasonic S1H sensor measures

For most cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
 
Panasonic S1H Full Frame 24.0 6000 40006K/30p----Panasonic S1H
 
Leica M-E Typ 240« » Full Frame 23.7 5952 39761080/25p----Leica M-E Typ 240
 
Nikon Z6« » Full Frame 24.3 6048 40244K/30p25.314.3329995Nikon Z6
 
Olympus E-M1X« » Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/30p----Olympus E-M1X
 
Panasonic S1« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40004K/60p25.214.5333395Panasonic S1
 
Panasonic S1R« » Full Frame 46.7 8368 55844K/60p26.414.13525100Panasonic S1R
 
Panasonic G95« » Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/30p----Panasonic G95
 
Pentax K-1 II« » Full Frame 36.2 7360 49121080/60i----Pentax K-1 II
 
Sigma fp« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40004K/30p----Sigma fp
 
Sony A7R IV« » Full Frame 60.2 9504 63364K/30p----Sony A7R IV
 
Sony A7 III« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40004K/30p25.014.7373096Sony A7 III

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The S1H indeed provides movie recording capabilities. The highest resolution format that the S1H can use is 6K/30p.

Feature comparison

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the S1H has an electronic viewfinder with a resolution of 5760k dots. The viewfinder offers a field of view of 100% and a magnification of 0.78x. The following tables report on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Panasonic S1H and comparable cameras.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
 
Panasonic S1H5760 Y 3.2 2330 swivel Y 1/8000s 9.0 n Y Panasonic S1H
 
Leica M-E Typ 240« »optical n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 n n Leica M-E Typ 240
 
Nikon Z6« »3690 Y 3.2 2100 tilting Y 1/8000s 12.0 n Y Nikon Z6
 
Olympus E-M1X« »2360 n 3.0 1037 swivel Y 1/8000s 18.0 n Y Olympus E-M1X
 
Panasonic S1« »5760 Y 3.2 2100 full-flex Y 1/8000s 9.0 n Y Panasonic S1
 
Panasonic S1R« »5760 Y 3.2 2100 full-flex Y 1/8000s 9.0 n Y Panasonic S1R
 
Panasonic G95« »2360 n 3.0 1240 swivel Y 1/4000s 9.0 Y Y Panasonic G95
 
Pentax K-1 II« »optical Y 3.2 1037 full-flex n 1/8000s 4.4 n Y Pentax K-1 II
 
Sigma fp« »- n 3.2 2100 fixed Y 1/8000s 12.0 n n Sigma fp
 
Sony A7R IV« »5760 n 3.0 1440 tilting Y 1/8000s 10.0 n Y Sony A7R IV
 
Sony A7 III« »2359 n 3.0 922 tilting Y 1/8000s 10.0 n Y Sony A7 III

One useful feature of the S1H is a presence of a top-level LCD. While being, of course, smaller than the rear screen, the control panel conveys some of the essential shooting information and can be convenient for quick and easy settings verification.

 

Connection comparison

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 DC-S1H and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
 
Panasonic S1HYstereomonoYYfull3.1Y-YPanasonic S1H
 
Leica M-E Typ 240« »Ymono----2.0---Leica M-E Typ 240
 
Nikon Z6« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1Y-YNikon Z6
 
Olympus E-M1X« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.0Y-YOlympus E-M1X
 
Panasonic S1« »YstereomonoYYfull3.1Y-YPanasonic S1
 
Panasonic S1R« »YstereomonoYYfull3.1Y-YPanasonic S1R
 
Panasonic G95« »YstereomonoYYmicro2.0Y-YPanasonic G95
 
Pentax K-1 II« »YstereomonoYYmicro2.0Y--Pentax K-1 II
 
Sigma fp« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1---Sigma fp
 
Sony A7R IV« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1YYYSony A7R IV
 
Sony A7 III« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1YYYSony A7 III

It is notable that the S1H has a microphone port. Such an external microphone input can help to substantially improve the quality of audio recordings when a good external microphone is used.

 

Expert reviews

While the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the handling experience and imaging performance when actually working with the S1H. 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. This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The adjacent table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog).

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Panasonic S1H----- May 2019 3,999 i i Panasonic S1H
 
Leica M-E Typ 240« »----- Jun 2019 3,999 i i Leica M-E Typ 240
 
Nikon Z6« »--4.5/54.5/55/5 Aug 2018 1,999 i i Nikon Z6
 
Olympus E-M1X« »o-4.5/55/5- Jan 2019 2,999 i i Olympus E-M1X
 
Panasonic S1« »+ +88/1004.5/5-4/5 Feb 2019 2,499 i i Panasonic S1
 
Panasonic S1R« »-89/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Feb 2019 3,699 i i Panasonic S1R
 
Panasonic G95« »+83/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Apr 2019 999 i i Panasonic G95
 
Pentax K-1 II« »-79/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2018 1,999 i i Pentax K-1 II
 
Sigma fp« »----- Jul 2019 .. i i Sigma fp
 
Sony A7R IV« »+---5/5 Jul 2019 3,499 i i Sony A7R IV
 
Sony A7 III« »+ +89/1005/55/55/5 Feb 2018 1,999 i i Sony A7 III
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (-) not available.

The above review scores should be interpreted 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 rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. Also, please note that some of the review sites have changed their methodology and reporting over time.

Panasonic S1H FAQ

Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the S1H.

What is the technology behind the imaging sensor in the S1H?

The camera is build around a CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor.

Which image processing chip is used to convert the raw signal into an image file and perform noise reduction and image sharpening?

Panasonic equipped the S1H with the Venus image processor.

What is the ISO sensitivity range of the S1H?

The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 51200, which can be extended to ISO 50-204800.

Does the camera have a selfie-friendly screen?

Yes, the LCD-screen of the S1H is flexible and can be turned to be front-facing for capturing selfies.

What is the life expectancy of the shutter in the Panasonic Lumix DC-S1H?

Panasonic mentions a shutter rating of 400 000 actuations for the S1H. This number represents a Mean Time before Failure, that is an average value. The shutter might fail earlier, or it might last longer. Anyway, in order to exhaust the expected shutter life of the S1H over, say, three years, one would have to take about 400 pictures each and every day.

Is completely silent shooting possible with the Panasonic S1H?

The camera has an electronic shutter option, so that it is indeed feasible to capture images without any shutter noise.

Is it difficult to use manual focus lenses with the Panasonic S1H?

The S1H offers focus peaking as a manual focus aid. This feature works by placing a colored highlight on in-focus zones within the image.

Does the Panasonic S1H feature an autofocus assist light?

Yes, the camera has a lamp built-in that can illuminate the subject and improve autofocus in low-light settings.

What is the fastest shutter speed that can be used with flash?

The S1H's flash sync speed is 1/320 sec.

Does the Panasonic S1H support the Ultra High Speed (UHS) bus interface for SD cards?

Yes, the camera can indeed use UHS-II cards, which provide for data transfer speed of up to 312 MB/s, in both of its card slots.

Which battery does the S1H use?

The camera gets its power from the DMW-BLJ31 (here at amazon), which is a rechargeable Lithium-Ion power pack.

Is there a vertical grip available for the S1H?

Yes, Panasonic offers the DMW-BGS1 as an optional accessory to facilitate shooting in portrait orientation and to provide additional battery power.

Camera to camera comparisons

In case you are interested in seeing how this camera compares to another one, just make your choice using the following search menu. An an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

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    Specifications Summary
    Camera Model Panasonic S1H
    Camera Type Mirrorless system camera
    Camera Lens Leica L mount lenses
    Launch Date May 2019
    Launch Price USD 3999
    Sensor Specs
    Sensor Technology CMOS
    Sensor Format Full Frame Sensor
    Sensor Size 35.6 x 23.8 mm
    Sensor Area 847.28 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 42.8 mm
    Crop Factor 1.0x
    Sensor Resolution 24 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 6000 x 4000 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 5.94 μm
    Pixel Density 2.83 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 6K/30p Video
    ISO Setting 100-51200 ISO
    ISO Boost 50-204800 ISO
    Image Processor Venus
    Screen Specs
    Viewfinder Type Electronic viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.78x
    Viewfinder Resolution 5760k dots
    Top-Level Screen Control Panel
    LCD Framing Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.2 inch
    LCD Resolution 2330k dots
    LCD Attachment Swivel screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs
    Autofocus System Contrast-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus Peaking
    Maximum Shutter Speed 1/8000s
    Continuous Shooting 9 shutter flaps/s
    Shutter Life Expectancy400 000 actuations
    Silent ShootingElectronic Shutter
    Time Lapse Photographyno Intervalometer
    Image StabilizationIn-body stabilization
    Fill Flash no On-Board Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Dual card slots
    UHS card support Dual UHS-II
    Connectivity Specs
    External Flash Hotshoe
    Studio Flash PC Sync socket
    USB Connector USB 3.1
    HDMI Port full HDMI
    Microphone Port External MIC port
    Headphone Socket Headphone port
    Wifi Support Wifi built-in
    Bluetooth Support Bluetooth built-in
    Body Specs
    Environmental SealingWeathersealed body
    Battery Type DMW-BLJ31 power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)400 shots per charge
    In-Camera Charging USB charging
    Body Dimensions 151 x 114 x 110 mm
    (5.9 x 4.5 x 4.3 in)
    Camera Weight 1052 g (37.1 oz)

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