Panasonic ZS100 vs GX85
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS100 (called Panasonic TZ100 in some regions) and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX85 (labelled Panasonic GX80 in some countries) are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in January 2016 and April 2016. The ZS100 is a fixed lens compact, while the GX85 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. The cameras are based on an one-inch (ZS100) and a Four Thirds (GX85) sensor. The ZS100 has a resolution of 20 megapixels, whereas the GX85 provides 15.8 MP. 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 ZS100||Panasonic GX85|
|Fixed lens compact camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|25-250mm f/2.8-5.9||Micro Four Thirds lenses|
|20 MP, 1" Sensor||15.8 MP, Four Thirds Sensor|
|4K/30p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO 125-12800 (80-25600)||ISO 200-25600|
|Electronic viewfinder (1166k dots)||Electronic viewfinder (2765k dots)|
|3.0" LCD, 1040k dots||3.0" LCD, 1040k dots|
|Fixed touchscreen||Tilting touchscreen|
|10 shutter flaps per second||8 shutter flaps per second|
|In-body stabilization||In-body stabilization|
|300 shots per battery charge||290 shots per battery charge|
|111 x 65 x 44 mm, 312 g||122 x 71 x 44 mm, 426 g|
Body comparison: Panasonic ZS100 vs GX85
The physical size and weight of the Panasonic ZS100 and the Panasonic GX85 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. 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. You can also toggle the display 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 side – the ZS100 – represents the basis for the calculations 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 GX85 is notably larger (20 percent) than the Panasonic ZS100. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the ZS100 nor the GX85 are weather-sealed.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the ZS100 has a lens built in, whereas the GX85 is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup. You can compare the optics available for the GX85 and their specifications in the Micro Four Thirds Lens Catalog.
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, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.
|Panasonic ZS100»||4.4 in||2.6 in||1.7 in||11.0 oz||300||n||Jan 2016||699||-||Panasonic ZS100|
|Panasonic GX85«||4.8 in||2.8 in||1.7 in||15.0 oz||290||n||Apr 2016||799||Panasonic GX85|
|Canon G7 X Mark II« »||4.2 in||2.4 in||1.7 in||11.3 oz||265||n||Feb 2016||699||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X« »||4.4 in||3.0 in||1.7 in||12.5 oz||210||n||Oct 2015||799||Canon G5 X|
|Canon M3« »||4.4 in||2.7 in||1.7 in||12.9 oz||250||n||Feb 2015||679||-||Canon M3|
|Canon G7 X« »||4.1 in||2.4 in||1.6 in||10.7 oz||210||n||Sep 2014||699||-||Canon G7 X|
|Olympus E-M10 II« »||4.7 in||3.3 in||1.9 in||13.8 oz||320||n||Aug 2015||799||-||Olympus E-M10 II|
|Olympus E-M10« »||4.7 in||3.2 in||1.8 in||14.0 oz||320||n||Jan 2014||699||-||Olympus E-M10|
|Panasonic GX9« »||4.9 in||2.8 in||1.9 in||14.4 oz||260||n||Feb 2018||849||Panasonic GX9|
|Panasonic ZS200« »||4.4 in||2.6 in||1.8 in||12.0 oz||370||n||Feb 2018||799||Panasonic ZS200|
|Panasonic G85« »||5.0 in||3.5 in||2.9 in||17.8 oz||330||Y||Sep 2016||899||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic LX10« »||4.2 in||2.4 in||1.7 in||10.9 oz||260||n||Sep 2016||699||Panasonic LX10|
|Panasonic GX7« »||4.8 in||2.8 in||2.2 in||14.2 oz||350||n||Aug 2013||999||-||Panasonic GX7|
|Sony RX100 V« »||4.0 in||2.3 in||1.6 in||10.5 oz||220||n||Oct 2016||999||Sony RX100 V|
|Sony RX100 IV« »||4.0 in||2.3 in||1.6 in||10.5 oz||280||n||Jun 2015||999||-||Sony RX100 IV|
|Sony RX100 III« »||4.0 in||2.3 in||1.6 in||10.2 oz||320||n||May 2014||799||-||Sony RX100 III|
|Sony RX100 II« »||4.0 in||2.3 in||1.5 in||9.9 oz||350||n||Jun 2013||749||-||Sony RX100 II|
Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The ZS100 was launched at a lower price than the GX85, despite having a lens built in. 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.
Sensor comparison: Panasonic ZS100 vs GX85
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 more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Panasonic ZS100 features an one-inch sensor and the Panasonic GX85 a Four Thirds sensor. The sensor area in the GX85 is 94 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 2.7 and 2.0. The sensor in the ZS100 has a native 3:2 aspect ratio, while the one in the GX85 offers a 4:3 aspect.
Despite having a smaller sensor, the Panasonic ZS100 offers a higher resolution of 20 megapixels, compared with 15.8 MP of the Panasonic GX85. This megapixels advantage comes at the cost of a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 2.41μm versus 3.77μm for the GX85). Moreover, it should be noted that the GX85 is a somewhat more recent model (by 2 months) than the ZS100, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the GX85 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS100 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 125 to ISO 12800, which can be extended to ISO 80-25600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX85 are ISO 200 to ISO 25600, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-25600..
Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The Overall DXO ratings for the two cameras under consideration are close, suggesting that they provide similar imaging performance. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|Panasonic ZS100»||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.5||559||70||Panasonic ZS100|
|Panasonic GX85«||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||4K/30p||22.9||12.6||662||71||Panasonic GX85|
|Canon G7 X Mark II« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||-||-||-||-||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||-||-||-||-||Canon G5 X|
|Canon M3« »||APS-C||24.0||6000||4000||1080/30p||22.8||11.8||1169||72||Canon M3|
|Canon G7 X« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||23.0||12.7||556||71||Canon G7 X|
|Olympus E-M10 II« »||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/60p||23.1||12.5||842||73||Olympus E-M10 II|
|Olympus E-M10« »||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||22.8||12.3||884||72||Olympus E-M10|
|Panasonic GX9« »||Four Thirds||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||-||-||-||-||Panasonic GX9|
|Panasonic ZS200« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||-||-||-||-||Panasonic ZS200|
|Panasonic G85« »||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||4K/30p||22.8||12.5||656||71||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic LX10« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||-||-||-||-||Panasonic LX10|
|Panasonic GX7« »||Four Thirds||15.8||4592||3448||1080/60p||22.6||12.2||718||70||Panasonic GX7|
|Sony RX100 V« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.4||586||70||Sony RX100 V|
|Sony RX100 IV« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||22.8||12.6||591||70||Sony RX100 IV|
|Sony RX100 III« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||22.4||12.3||495||67||Sony RX100 III|
|Sony RX100 II« »||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||22.5||12.4||483||67||Sony RX100 II|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration have a sensor with sufficiently fast read-out times for moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (4K/30p).
Feature comparison: Panasonic ZS100 vs GX85
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 GX85 offers a substantially higher resolution than the one in the ZS100 (2765k vs 1166k dots). The table below summarizes some of the other core capabilities of the Panasonic ZS100 and Panasonic GX85 in connection with corresponding information for a sample of similar cameras.
|Panasonic ZS100»||1166||n||3.0||1040||fixed||Y||2000||10.0||Y||Y||Panasonic ZS100|
|Panasonic GX85«||2765||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||4000||8.0||Y||Y||Panasonic GX85|
|Canon G7 X Mark II« »||-||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||2000||8.0||Y||Y||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X« »||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||2000||5.9||Y||Y||Canon G5 X|
|Canon M3« »||-||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||4000||4.2||Y||n||Canon M3|
|Canon G7 X« »||-||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||2000||6.5||Y||Y||Canon G7 X|
|Olympus E-M10 II« »||2360||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||4000||8.0||Y||Y||Olympus E-M10 II|
|Olympus E-M10« »||1440||n||3.0||1037||tilting||Y||4000||8.0||Y||Y||Olympus E-M10|
|Panasonic GX9« »||2760||n||3.0||1240||tilting||Y||4000||9.0||Y||Y||Panasonic GX9|
|Panasonic ZS200« »||2330||n||3.0||1240||fixed||Y||2000||10.0||Y||Y||Panasonic ZS200|
|Panasonic G85« »||2360||n||3.0||1040||swivel||Y||4000||9.0||Y||Y||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic LX10« »||-||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||4000||10.0||Y||Y||Panasonic LX10|
|Panasonic GX7« »||2760||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||8000||5.0||Y||Y||Panasonic GX7|
|Sony RX100 V« »||2359||n||3.0||1229||tilting||n||2000||24.0||Y||Y||Sony RX100 V|
|Sony RX100 IV« »||2359||n||3.0||1228||tilting||n||2000||16.0||Y||Y||Sony RX100 IV|
|Sony RX100 III« »||1440||n||3.0||1229||tilting||n||2000||10.0||Y||Y||Sony RX100 III|
|Sony RX100 II« »||-||n||3.0||1229||tilting||n||2000||10.0||Y||Y||Sony RX100 II|
The reported shutter speed and shutter burst refer to the use of the mechanical shutter. In addition, both cameras 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).
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the ZS100 and the GX85 write their files to SDXC cards.
Connectivity comparison: Panasonic ZS100 vs GX85
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-ZS100 and Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX85 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
|Panasonic ZS100»||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic ZS100|
|Panasonic GX85«||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic GX85|
|Canon G7 X Mark II« »||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G5 X|
|Canon M3« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon M3|
|Canon G7 X« »||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Canon G7 X|
|Olympus E-M10 II« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Olympus E-M10 II|
|Olympus E-M10« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Olympus E-M10|
|Panasonic GX9« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y||Panasonic GX9|
|Panasonic ZS200« »||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic ZS200|
|Panasonic G85« »||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic LX10« »||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-||Panasonic LX10|
|Panasonic GX7« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-||Panasonic GX7|
|Sony RX100 V« »||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Sony RX100 V|
|Sony RX100 IV« »||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Sony RX100 IV|
|Sony RX100 III« »||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Sony RX100 III|
|Sony RX100 II« »||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-||Sony RX100 II|
It is notable that the GX85 has a hotshoe, which makes it possible to easily attach optional accessories, such as an external flash gun. The ZS100 does not feature such an accessory-socket.
The GX85 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Panasonic. In contrast, the ZS100 has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the ZS100 was succeeded by the Panasonic ZS200.
Review summary: Panasonic ZS100 vs GX85
So what conclusions can be drawn? Is the Panasonic ZS100 better than the Panasonic GX85 or vice versa? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Reasons to prefer the Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS100:
- More detail: Offers more megapixels (20 vs 15.8MP) with a 15% higher linear resolution.
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (10 vs 8 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Ready to shoot: Has a lens built-in, whereas the GX85 requires a separate lens.
- More compact: Is smaller (111x65mm vs 122x71mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
- Less heavy: Is lighter even though it comes with a built-in lens (unlike the GX85).
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in January 2016).
Advantages of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX85:
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (2765k vs 1166k dots).
- More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (4000/sec vs 2000/sec) to freeze action.
- More flexible: Takes interchangeable lenses and can thus be used with specialty optics.
- Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
- More modern: Was introduced somewhat (2 months) more recently.
If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the ZS100 comes out slightly ahead of the GX85 (8 : 7 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision on a new camera.
In any case, 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 ZS100 and the GX85 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.
Expert reviews: Panasonic ZS100 vs GX85
This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The following table reports the overall rankings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog). You can find the full text of the reviews by clicking on the site logo in the table header.
|Panasonic ZS100»||HiRec||82/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Jan 2016||699||-||Panasonic ZS100|
|Panasonic GX85«||HiRec||82/100||5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Apr 2016||799||Panasonic GX85|
|Canon G7 X Mark II« »||HiRec||81/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2016||699||Canon G7 X Mark II|
|Canon G5 X« »||HiRec||78/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Oct 2015||799||Canon G5 X|
|Canon M3« »||rev||75/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4/5||Feb 2015||679||-||Canon M3|
|Canon G7 X« »||HiRec||77/100||4.5/5||3.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2014||699||-||Canon G7 X|
|Olympus E-M10 II« »||HiRec||80/100||5/5||5/5||5/5||Aug 2015||799||-||Olympus E-M10 II|
|Olympus E-M10« »||-||80/100||5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Jan 2014||699||-||Olympus E-M10|
|Panasonic GX9« »||Rec||84/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2018||849||Panasonic GX9|
|Panasonic ZS200« »||HiRec||81/100||4.5/5||-||4.5/5||Feb 2018||799||Panasonic ZS200|
|Panasonic G85« »||HiRec||84/100||5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2016||899||Panasonic G85|
|Panasonic LX10« »||HiRec||81/100||4/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2016||699||Panasonic LX10|
|Panasonic GX7« »||Rec||79/100||5/5||4.5/5||5/5||Aug 2013||999||-||Panasonic GX7|
|Sony RX100 V« »||HiRec||83/100||4/5||5/5||4.5/5||Oct 2016||999||Sony RX100 V|
|Sony RX100 IV« »||HiRec||85/100||4/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2015||999||-||Sony RX100 IV|
|Sony RX100 III« »||HiRec||82/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||5/5||May 2014||799||-||Sony RX100 III|
|Sony RX100 II« »||HiRec||79/100||4.5/5||5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2013||749||-||Sony RX100 II|
The review scores listed above should be treated with care, 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.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make a corresponding selection in the search boxes below. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.
- Canon 40D vs Panasonic GX9
- Canon 60D vs Sony A99 II
- Canon M50 vs Sony A7R
- Fujifilm X-T2 vs Sony A77 II
- Fujifilm X-T3 vs Canon SL2
- Leica Digilux 3 vs Canon 5D Mark II
- Leica SL vs Leica X1
- Nikon 1 J4 vs Nikon D7000
- Nikon D610 vs Ricoh GR II
- Panasonic TZ100 vs Panasonic GX8
- Sony A7 II vs Pentax K-5
- Sony RX100 III vs Canon SL2
Specifications: Panasonic ZS100 vs Panasonic GX85
|Camera Model||Panasonic ZS100||Panasonic GX85|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||25-250mm f/2.8-5.9||Micro Four Thirds lenses|
|Launch Date||January 2016||April 2016|
|Launch Price||USD 699||USD 799|
|Sensor Format||1" Sensor||Four Thirds Sensor|
|Sensor Size||13.2 x 8.8 mm||17.3 x 8.8 mm|
|Sensor Area||116.16 mm2||224.9 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||15.9 mm||21.6 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||20 Megapixels||15.8 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||5472 x 3648 pixels||4592 x 3448 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||2.41 μm||3.77 μm|
|Pixel Density||17.18 MP/cm2||7.04 MP/cm2|
|Movie Capability||4K/30p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||125-12800 ISO||200-25600 ISO|
|ISO Boost||80-25600 ISO||no Enhancement|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Resolution||1166k dots||2765k dots|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0 inch||3.0 inch|
|LCD Resolution||1040k dots||1040k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Tilting screen|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/2000s||1/4000s|
|Continuous Shooting||10 shutter flaps/s||8 shutter flaps/s|
|Silent Shooting||Electronic Shutter||Electronic Shutter|
|Image Stabilization||In-body stabilization||In-body stabilization|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Battery Type||DMW-BLG10 power pack||DMW-BLG10 power pack|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||300 shots per charge||290 shots per charge|
111 x 65 x 44 mm
(4.4 x 2.6 x 1.7 in)
122 x 71 x 44 mm
(4.8 x 2.8 x 1.7 in)
|Camera Weight||312 g (11.0 oz)||426 g (15.0 oz)|
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