Panasonic G9 Field Test
Panasonic G9 Field Test Part I
An impressive mirrorless camera with great design & performance
Camera Body and Handling
In William Brawley's hands-on first impressions of the Panasonic G9, he went into a lot of detail regarding the G9's ergonomics and handling. I want to add my two cents as everyone's experience with a camera will be a bit different.
With that said, I certainly echo William's sentiments that the G9 feels very secure in the hand. The G9 feels fantastic. The grip is chunky without making the camera huge. It's large for a Micro Four Thirds mirrorless camera, but it is still pretty compact and lightweight without sacrificing anything by way of physical controls. It is like a downsized pro DSLR.
Panasonic G9 Field Test Part II
A lot of great video features including 4K/60p recording
In my first G9 Field Test, I discussed the camera's ergonomics and handling; image sensor and image quality; performance; autofocus and more. In the second Field Test, I will be discussing the camera's video features and performance. The G9 is a very capable video camera, as we will see, but it's not without its shortcomings. Let's find out how it does on balance compared to its predecessor and competition.
The G9 is a very capable video camera, not only in general but especially for its price point. Priced well under $2,000, the G9 can record 4K video at up to 60 frames per second, which is very impressive and still fairly uncommon for a camera at this price. There is a downside to this 4K/60p video, however, which is that the recording length is limited to 10 minutes. By reducing the frame rate to 30 fps, the G9 can record 30-minute long 4K clips. While many video features are shared between the Panasonic GH5 and the G9, the former does deliver longer 4K/60p clips. The G9 records 4K/60p video at a bitrate up to 150Mbps and 30p video at 100Mbps. The video output tops out at 4:2:0 8-bit quality unless you use the full-size HDMI output, which offers 4:2:2 video at 30p, although it's still 4:2:0 when using 60p.
Panasonic G9 Field Test Part III
The G9 includes a plethora of great shooting features
In my first two Field Tests, I focused on the camera's design, image sensor, autofocus, performance and then its use as a video camera. In this third and final Field Test, I will be discussing the shooting experience in greater detail and discuss shooting modes, wireless functionality and more. The Panasonic G9 has a lot of good features, such as time-lapse shooting and 6K Photo, which will be discussed in this Field Test. Finally, I will wrap up my overall thoughts of the Panasonic G9 based on my real-world testing.
While a large part of a camera's shooting experience comprises its design, ergonomics, image quality and autofocus, there are other aspects that matter a lot, too. Metering is an example of this. It's not often I encounter serious issues with a camera's metering system because most cameras work well in that regard. The G9 is one of those cameras. Its 1,728-zone metering system offers intelligent multiple, center-weighted and spot metering modes, with the lattermost being tied to the active autofocus point. Further, the camera has +/- 5 stops of exposure compensation, which is overkill in most cases, but still welcome.