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Panasonic G5

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Panasonic G5 Performance


Timing and Performance

Generally good performance for a Compact System Camera.

Startup/Shutdown

Power on
to first shot

~1.3 seconds

Time it takes to turn on and capture a shot.

Shutdown

~2.5 seconds

How long it takes camera to turn off before you can remove the memory card.

Buffer clearing time
12 seconds after
18 Large/Fine JPEGs*
Worst case buffer clearing time. -- This is the delay after a set of shots before you can remove the card.
12 seconds after
9 RAW files*
14 seconds after
9 RAW+ L/F JPEG files*
*Note: Buffer clearing times measured with a SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/sec UHS-1 SDHC card. Slower cards will produce correspondingly slower clearing times. Slow cards may also limit length of bursts in continuous mode. ISO sensitivity and noise reduction settings can also affect cycle times and burst mode performance.

Startup time is a little faster than average for a Compact System Camera, but shutdown is a bit sluggish. Buffer clearing times aren't exactly fast, but are reasonable. (Panasonic says the G5 is UHS-I compliant.)


Mode Switching

Play to Record,
first shot

~0.6 second

Time until first shot is captured.

Record to Play

~1.3 seconds

Time to display a large/fine file immediately after capture.

Display
recorded image

~0.3 second

Time to display a large/fine file already on the memory card.

Mode switching is quite fast except for Record to Play.


Shutter Response (Lag Time)
Full Autofocus,
Single-area AF mode
0.194 second
Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture, with the lens already at the proper focal distance setting. (All AF timing done with the Panasonic 14-42mm X PZ kit lens at approximately 25mm.)
Full Autofocus,
Multi-area AF mode
0.191 second
Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture, with the lens already at the proper focal distance setting.
Full Autofocus,
Single-area AF mode,
Flash enabled
0.471 second
Time from fully pressing shutter button to image capture, with the lens already at the proper focal distance setting, auto flash enabled.
Continuous AF
0.188 second
This mode usually shows no speed increase with our static subject; we have no way to measure performance with moving subjects.
Manual Focus
0.079 second
For most cameras, shutter lag is less in manual focus than autofocus, but usually not as fast as when the camera is "prefocused".

Prefocused

0.063 second

Time to capture, after half-pressing and holding shutter button.

The Panasonic G5's contrast-detect autofocus is quick, faster than most consumer SLRs. The G5's full-autofocus shutter lag (with the subject at a fixed distance) is only 0.194 second using single-area (center) AF with the 14-42mm X PZ kit lens in our test. 23-area AF is slightly faster at 0.191 second. Enabling the flash increases lag quite a bit to 0.471 second, but that's still pretty good. When manually focused, the G5's lag time drops to 0.079 second, which is also quite fast. The G5's prefocused shutter lag time of 0.063 second is also pretty quick.

To minimize the effect of different lens' focusing speed, we test AF-active shutter lag with the lens already set to the correct focal distance.


Cycle Time (shot to shot)

Single Shot mode
Large/Fine JPEG

0.45 second

Time per shot, averaged over 20 shots with no signs of slowing, 3 seconds to clear*.

Single Shot mode
RAW

0.44 second

Time per shot, averaged over 8 shots, 12 seconds to clear*.

Single Shot mode
RAW + L/F JPEG
0.54 second

Time per shot, averaged over 6 shots, 12 seconds to clear*.

Early shutter
penalty?

No

Some cameras don't snap another shot if you release and press the shutter too quickly in Single Shot mode, making "No" the preferred answer.

Continuous H
Large Fine JPEG

0.16 second (6.25 frames per second);
18 frames total;
12 seconds to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over buffer length of 18 frames, then slows to an average of 0.23s or 4.27 fps.

Continuous H
RAW

0.18 second (5.56 frames per second);
9 frames total;
12 seconds to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over buffer length of 9 frames, then slows to an average of 1.33s or 0.75 fps.

Continuous H
RAW + L/F JPEG

0.18 second (5.56 frames per second);
9 frames total;
14 seconds to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over buffer length of 9 frames, then slows to an average of about 1.61s or 0.62 fps.

Continuous Super H
4MP JPEG

0.05 second (20.0 frames per second);
40 frames total;
12 seconds to clear*

Time per shot, averaged over buffer length of 40 frames.

Flash Recycling

3.8 seconds

Flash at maximum output.

*Note: Buffer clearing times measured with a SanDisk Extreme Pro 95 MB/sec UHS-1 SDHC card. Slower cards will produce correspondingly slower clearing times. Slow cards may also limit length of bursts in continuous mode. ISO sensitivity and noise reduction settings can also affect cycle times and burst mode performance.

Single-shot cycle times are quite fast. We measured 0.45 second for Large/Fine JPEGs, 0.44 second for RAW and 0.54 second for RAW+L/F JPEGs.

Continuous H (High Speed) mode is pretty fast at 6.25 frames per second when shooting full-resolution JPEGs. This drops to about 5.6 frames per second with RAW files, though. Note that Live View is not available during bursts in Continuous H mode. Continuous Medium and Low speed modes offer 3.7 and 2 frames per second respectively, while supporting Live View.

Full resolution buffer depth is pretty good for Large/Fine JPEGs, at 18 frames (we suspect there is no limit with typical scenes and a fast card -- our test scene is designed to be difficult to compress). When shooting RAW or RAW+JPEG files, though, buffer depth drops to 9 frames. Buffer clearing times aren't exactly quick for a model that supports UHS-I cards, but not too bad.

The flash recycled after a full discharge in an average of 3.8 seconds, but there was a lot of variation ranging from 1.7s to 4.9s during our testing.


Download Speed

Windows Computer, USB 2.0

9,390 KBytes/sec

Typical Values:
Less than 600=USB 1.1;
600-769=USB 2.0 Low;
Above 770=USB 2.0 High

Download speeds are fast, quick enough that you probably won't feel the need for a separate card reader, even with large memory cards. (Note that this test was performed with a SanDisk Extreme Pro 95MB/sec UHS-1 SD card: Slower cards would likely show slower transfer times.)


Bottom line, the Panasonic G5's performance is generally good. Autofocus is very fast, cycle times and burst speeds are good, but buffer clearing wasn't impressive even with a fast 95MB/s UHS card.

Battery Life

Slightly below average battery life for a Compact System Camera.

Operating Mode Battery Life
Still Capture, CIPA standard
(H-PS14042 X PZ or H-FS45150 lens)
320 shots
Still Capture, CIPA standard
(H-FS014042 lens)
310 shots

The Panasonic G5 uses a custom rechargeable lithium-ion battery pack for power, and comes with both a single battery and charger. The CIPA rated 310-320 shots per charge depending on the lens is a little below average for a Compact System Camera, and much lower than a typical digital SLR when using the SLR's optical viewfinder. We strongly recommend getting a second battery for your G5 if you plan any extended outings.

The table above shows the number of shots the camera is capable of (on a fully-charged rechargeable battery), based on CIPA battery-life and/or manufacturer standard test conditions.

(Interested readers can find an English translation of the CIPA DC-002 standards document here. (180K PDF document))