• 1 inch 115.3mm2
  • 14.2 megapixels
  • ISO 200 - 12,800
  • 4/3 224.9mm2
  • 16.0 megapixels
  • ISO 200 - 25,600

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Differences

Nikon S2 advantages over Panasonic GX85

  • On-sensor phase detect
    Yes vs No
    Usually improves live view and video AF performance
  • More telephoto lens reach
    74 mm vs 64 mm
    Capture objects farther away with the kit lens
  • Thinner
    29 mm vs 43 mm
    Thinner
  • Has anti-aliasing filter
    Filter vs No Filter
    Reduces unsightly moiré in photos
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    60.0 fps vs 8.4 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Slow-motion videos
    Yes vs No
    Shoot slow-motion videos

Panasonic GX85 advantages over Nikon S2

  • Lens selection
    Excellent vs Limited
    Better lens selection gives you more options
  • Focus peaking
    Peaker vs Non-peaker
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • Larger sensor
    4/3 vs 1 inch
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Eye-level vs Rear display only
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Yes vs No
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Bigger pixels
    ~ 3.77 vs 2.85 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)
  • Shoot 4K video
    4K (UHD) vs 1080p
    Make sure you have a fast computer
  • Touchscreen
    Touch vs No touch
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • Tiltable Screen
    Tiltable vs Fixed
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Wi-Fi vs None
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • Higher max flash sync
    1/160 vs 1/60 sec
    Reduce the effect of ambient light in flash shots
  • Newer
    16 months vs 3 years old
    Newer cameras often support more advanced features
  • Shoots 24p video
    Yes vs No
    Gives your movies a big-screen feel
  • Higher-res screen
    347k vs 154k pixels
    More detail on the screen lets you judge focus and composition
  • Hot shoe
    Hot shoe vs None
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities
  • Lacks anti-aliasing filter
    No Filter vs Filter
    Enjoy sharper photos
  • Wider angle kit lens
    24 mm vs 30 mm
    Capture more of the scene with the included lens
  • Longer exposure
    60 vs 30 sec
    Long exposures for night shots
  • Higher extended ISO
    25600 vs 12800 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • In-camera panoramas
    Both provide
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Internal flash
    Both provide
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • HDMI out
    Both provide
    Use an external screen to monitor or review video
  • Bulb shutter
    Both provide
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures

Common Weaknesses

  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • NFC
    Neither provide
    Simplifies pairing your camera with supported phones
  • Built-in Bluetooth
    Neither provide
    Always-on wireless connectivity
  • Built-in GPS
    Neither provide
    Geotag your photos
  • Top deck display
    Neither provide
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • External Mic Jack
    Neither provide
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • Dual card slots
    Neither provide
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • Headphone jack
    Neither provide
    Monitor audio recording while you shoot video

User reviews

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Your purchases support this site

Buy the Nikon S2

Your purchases support this site

Buy the Panasonic GX85

Review Excerpt

  • Excellent build-quality; Good ergonomics for its size; Built-in 5-axis Dual IS, Built-in EVF; Tilting LCD touchscreen monitor; Competitive still image quality; Excellent 4K video quality; Fast autofocus and burst modes; Generous buffers; Tons of advanced features; Built-in Wi-Fi.

  • EVF could be better; Sluggish RAW and RAW+JPEG buffer clearing; No external mic and headphone jacks; Slow x-sync speed; Mediocre battery life.

The Competition

Compared to Pentax Q7

Nikon S2
Pentax Q7
  • $259
  • 1 inch
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $195
  • 1/1.7 inch
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
Panasonic GX85
Pentax Q7
  • $698
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Larger sensor
  • $195
  • 1/1.7 inch
  • Less expensive
  • Thinner

Compared to Nikon J4

Nikon S2
Nikon J4
  • $259
  • 1 inch
  • Has anti-aliasing filter
  • $375
  • 1 inch
  • Touchscreen
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
Panasonic GX85
Nikon J4
  • $698
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Focus peaking
  • $375
  • 1 inch
  • Less expensive
  • On-sensor phase detect

Compared to Pentax Q-S1

Nikon S2
Pentax Q-S1
  • $259
  • 1 inch
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $350
  • 1/1.7 inch
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
Panasonic GX85
Pentax Q-S1
  • $698
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Larger sensor
  • $350
  • 1/1.7 inch
  • Higher max flash sync
  • Has anti-aliasing filter

Compared to Olympus E-M10 II

Nikon S2
Olympus E-M10 II
  • $259
  • 1 inch
  • Slower slow-motion
  • In-camera panoramas
  • $499
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Focus peaking
Panasonic GX85
Olympus E-M10 II
  • $698
  • 4/3
  • Shoot 4K video
  • In-camera panoramas
  • $499
  • 4/3
  • Less expensive
  • Higher effective ISO

Compared to Olympus E-PL8

Nikon S2
Olympus E-PL8
  • $259
  • 1 inch
  • In-camera panoramas
  • On-sensor phase detect
  • $549
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Focus peaking
Panasonic GX85
Olympus E-PL8
  • $698
  • 4/3
  • Eye-level viewfinder
  • Shoot 4K video
  • $549
  • 4/3
  • Longer stills battery life
  • More telephoto lens reach
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