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Panasonic S1R Comparison Review

The Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera that was officially introduced in February 2019 and is equipped with a full frame sensor. It offers a resolution of 46.7 megapixel.

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The Panasonic S1R has a Camera Elo of 3355. This very strong rating puts it among the elite group of camera grand masters. The S1R ranks among the top 10 percent of all mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (full frame cameras), the S1R also falls among the top 10 percent.

Headline Specifications
Panasonic S1R
Mirrorless system camera
Leica L mount lenses
46.7 MP, Full Frame Sensor
4K/60p Video
ISO 100-25600 (50-51200)
Electronic viewfinder (5760k dots)
3.2" LCD, 2100k dots
Fully flexible touchscreen
9 shutter flaps per second
In-body stabilization
Weathersealed body
380 shots per battery charge
149 x 110 x 97 mm, 1016 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

An illustration of the physical dimensions of the Panasonic S1R vis-à-vis a credit card is provided in the side-by-side display below. 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 S1R vs credit card front
S1R versus credit card top view
S1R and credit card rear side

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Panasonic S1R 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 S1R 5.9 in 4.3 in 3.8 in 35.8 oz 380 Y Feb 2019 3,699 i i Panasonic S1R
 
Canon 6D Mark II« » 5.7 in 4.4 in 3.0 in 27.0 oz 1200 Y Jun 2017 1,999 i i Canon 6D Mark II
 
Nikon Z6« » 5.3 in 4.0 in 2.6 in 23.8 oz 310 Y Aug 2018 1,999 i i Nikon Z6
 
Nikon Z7« » 5.3 in 4.0 in 2.6 in 23.8 oz 330 Y Aug 2018 3,399 i i Nikon Z7
 
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 GH5« » 5.5 in 3.9 in 3.4 in 25.6 oz 410 Y Jan 2017 1,999 i i Panasonic GH5
 
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
 
Pentax K-1« » 5.4 in 4.3 in 3.4 in 35.6 oz 760 Y Feb 2016 1,799- i Pentax K-1
 
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
 
Sony A99 II« » 5.6 in 4.1 in 3.0 in 29.9 oz 490 Y Sep 2016 3,199 i i Sony A99 II
 
Sony A850« » 6.1 in 4.6 in 3.2 in 31.6 oz 880 Y Aug 2009 1,999- i Sony A850

The listed prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The Panasonic S1R was launched in the US market at a price of $3,699. 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 S1R:
Check Amazon price

Sensor comparison with a 35mm slide

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. 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 tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.

The Panasonic S1R 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 S1R among the large-sensor cameras that aim for top notch image quality.

Panasonic S1R sensor measures

For most cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. 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"). The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-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 S1R Full Frame 46.7 8368 55844K/60p----Panasonic S1R
 
Canon 6D Mark II« » Full Frame 26.0 6240 41601080/60p24.411.9286285Canon 6D Mark II
 
Nikon Z6« » Full Frame 24.3 6048 40244K/30p25.314.3329995Nikon Z6
 
Nikon Z7« » Full Frame 45.4 8256 55044K/30p26.314.6266899Nikon Z7
 
Panasonic S1« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40004K/60p25.214.5333395Panasonic S1
 
Panasonic GH5« » Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/60p23.913.080777Panasonic GH5
 
Pentax K-1 II« » Full Frame 36.2 7360 49121080/60i----Pentax K-1 II
 
Pentax K-1« » Full Frame 36.2 7360 49121080/60i25.414.6328096Pentax K-1
 
Sony A7 III« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40004K/30p25.014.7373096Sony A7 III
 
Sony A99 II« » Full Frame 42.2 7952 53044K/30p25.413.4231792Sony A99 II
 
Sony A850« » Full Frame 24.4 6048 4032-23.812.2141579Sony A850

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The S1R indeed provides movie recording capabilities. The highest resolution format that the S1R can use is 4K/60p.

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the S1R 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 S1R 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 S1R5760 Y 3.2 2100 full-flex Y 1/8000s 9.0 n Y Panasonic S1R
 
Canon 6D Mark II« »optical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.5 n n Canon 6D Mark II
 
Nikon Z6« »3690 Y 3.2 2100 tilting Y 1/8000s 12.0 n Y Nikon Z6
 
Nikon Z7« »3690 Y 3.2 2100 tilting Y 1/8000s 9.0 n Y Nikon Z7
 
Panasonic S1« »5760 Y 3.2 2100 full-flex Y 1/8000s 9.0 n Y Panasonic S1
 
Panasonic GH5« »3680 n 3.2 1620 swivel Y 1/8000s 12.0 n Y Panasonic GH5
 
Pentax K-1 II« »optical Y 3.2 1037 full-flex n 1/8000s 4.4 n Y Pentax K-1 II
 
Pentax K-1« »optical Y 3.2 1037 full-flex n 1/8000s 4.4 n Y Pentax K-1
 
Sony A7 III« »2359 n 3.0 922 tilting Y 1/8000s 10.0 n Y Sony A7 III
 
Sony A99 II« »2400 Y 3.0 1229 full-flex n 1/8000s 12.0 n Y Sony A99 II
 
Sony A850« »optical Y 3.0 922 fixed n 1/8000s 3.0 n Y Sony A850

One useful feature of the S1R 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-S1R 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 S1RYstereomonoYYfull3.1Y-YPanasonic S1R
 
Canon 6D Mark II« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YYYCanon 6D Mark II
 
Nikon Z6« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1Y-YNikon Z6
 
Nikon Z7« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1Y-YNikon Z7
 
Panasonic S1« »YstereomonoYYfull3.1Y-YPanasonic S1
 
Panasonic GH5« »YstereomonoYYfull3.1Y-YPanasonic GH5
 
Pentax K-1 II« »YstereomonoYYmicro2.0Y--Pentax K-1 II
 
Pentax K-1« »YstereomonoYYmicro2.0Y--Pentax K-1
 
Sony A7 III« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1YYYSony A7 III
 
Sony A99 II« »YstereomonoYYmicro2.0YYYSony A99 II
 
Sony A850« »Y----mini2.0---Sony A850

It is notable that the S1R 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 specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it says nothing about, for example, the handling, responsiveness, and overall imaging quality of the S1R in practical situations. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable. 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 S1R--4.5/5-4.5/5 Feb 2019 3,699 i i Panasonic S1R
 
Canon 6D Mark II« »+80/1004.5/54/54/5 Jun 2017 1,999 i i Canon 6D Mark II
 
Nikon Z6« »--4.5/5-5/5 Aug 2018 1,999 i i Nikon Z6
 
Nikon Z7« »+89/1004.5/54.5/55/5 Aug 2018 3,399 i i Nikon Z7
 
Panasonic S1« »++---4.5/5 Feb 2019 2,499 i i Panasonic S1
 
Panasonic GH5« »++85/1004.5/55/55/5 Jan 2017 1,999 i i Panasonic GH5
 
Pentax K-1 II« »-79/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Feb 2018 1,999 i i Pentax K-1 II
 
Pentax K-1« »-84/1005/54.5/55/5 Feb 2016 1,799- i Pentax K-1
 
Sony A7 III« »++89/1005/55/55/5 Feb 2018 1,999 i i Sony A7 III
 
Sony A99 II« »-85/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2016 3,199 i i Sony A99 II
 
Sony A850« »-75/100-4/54.5/5 Aug 2009 1,999- i Sony A850
Notes: ++) highly recommended; +) recommended; o) reviewed; -) not available.

Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, and rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.

Panasonic S1R FAQ

Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the S1R.

What technology is the imaging sensor in the S1R based on?

The camera has a CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor at its core.

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 S1R with the Venus image processor.

What is the ISO sensitivity range of the S1R?

The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 25600, which can be extended to ISO 50-51200.

What is the life expectancy of the shutter in the Panasonic Lumix DC-S1R?

Panasonic mentions a shutter rating of 400 000 actuations for the S1R. 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 S1R over, say, three years, one would have to take about 400 pictures each and every day.

Is completely silent shooting possible with the Panasonic S1R?

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 S1R?

The S1R 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 S1R 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 S1R's flash sync speed is 1/320 sec.

Does the Panasonic S1R 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 S1R 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 S1R?

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 would like to check on the differences and similarities with other camera models, just use the search menu 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.

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    Specifications Summary
    Camera Model Panasonic S1R
    Camera Type Mirrorless system camera
    Camera Lens Leica L mount lenses
    Launch Date February 2019
    Launch Price USD 3699
    Sensor Specs
    Sensor Technology CMOS
    Sensor Format Full Frame Sensor
    Sensor Size 36.0 x 24.0 mm
    Sensor Area 864 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 43.3 mm
    Crop Factor 1.0x
    Sensor Resolution 46.7 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 8368 x 5584 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.30 μm
    Pixel Density 5.41 MP/cm2
    Moiré control no AA filter
    Movie Capability 4K/60p Video
    ISO Setting 100-25600 ISO
    ISO Boost 50-51200 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 2100k dots
    LCD Attachment Fully flexible 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 or XQD 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)380 shots per charge
    In-Camera Charging USB charging
    Body Dimensions 149 x 110 x 97 mm
    (5.9 x 4.3 x 3.8 in)
    Camera Weight 1016 g (35.8 oz)

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