• 35mm 861.6mm2
  • 24.6 megapixels
  • ISO 200 - 3200
  • 4/3 224.9mm2
  • 12.1 megapixels
  • ISO 160 - 6400

Buy From

Differences

Sony A850 advantages over Panasonic GF5

  • Larger sensor
    35mm vs 4/3
    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
    ~ 5.94 vs 4.33 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)
  • Fast startup
    ~0.50 vs 1.4 sec
    Faster startup lets you catch the moment
  • Better color depth
    23.8 vs 21.4 bits
    Capture richer, more accurate colors
  • Higher effective ISO
    1,415 vs 618 iso
    Take photos in low light with less noise
  • Longer stills battery life
    More info 880 vs 330 shots
    Capture more photos
  • Top deck display
    Yes vs No
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • Higher max flash sync
    1/250 vs 1/160 sec
    Reduce the effect of ambient light in flash shots
  • Hot shoe
    Hot shoe vs None
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities
  • More pixels
    24.6 vs 12.1 megapixels
    Higher resolution photos
  • Dual card slots
    Yes vs No
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • Bulb shutter
    Bulb vs No bulb
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    23 vs 5 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)
  • Faster shutter
    1/8000 vs 1/4000 sec
    Shoot wide open in bright light

Panasonic GF5 advantages over Sony A850

  • Lens selection
    Excellent vs Good
    Better lens selection gives you more options
  • Touchscreen
    Touch vs No touch
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • Internal flash
    Internal flash vs None
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • Thinner
    36 mm vs 81 mm
    Thinner
  • Newer
    6 years vs 9 years old
    Newer cameras often support more advanced features
  • Shoots 1080p video
    Yes vs No
    You'll want this if you shoot video
  • Shoots 60p video
    Yes vs No
    A faster framerate can give you more editing options
  • Longer exposure
    60 vs 30 sec
    Long exposures for night shots
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    4.0 fps vs 3.0 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Higher extended ISO
    12800 vs 6400 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • HDMI out
    Both provide
    Use HDMI output to monitor or review video

Common Weaknesses

  • Focus peaking
    Neither provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • In-camera panoramas
    Neither provide
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Tiltable Screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Neither provide
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • Built-in Bluetooth
    Neither provide
    Always-on wireless connectivity
  • Built-in GPS
    Neither provide
    Geotag your photos
  • On-sensor phase detect
    Neither provide
    Usually improves live view and video AF performance
  • External Mic Jack
    Neither provide
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • Headphone jack
    Neither provide
    Monitor audio recording while you shoot video
  • Slow-motion videos
    Neither provide
    Shoot slow-motion videos

User reviews

Buy From

Your purchases support this site

Your purchases support this site

Buy the Panasonic GF5

Review Excerpt

  • Small body pairs nicely with compact, retractable Power Zoom lens. Extremely fast autofocus. Worthwhile improvements in image quality. Touchscreen overlays can now be hidden.

  • LCD panel is prone to fingerprint smudges. Weak flash, and no hot shoe. Modest burst performance, and very limited buffer for raw shooting. Noise levels and dynamic range still lag competition.

The Competition

Compared to Sony A900

Sony A850
Sony A900
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Less expensive
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
  • $3000
  • 35mm
  • Faster JPEG shooting
Panasonic GF5
Sony A900
  • $360
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Touchscreen
  • $3000
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Eye-level viewfinder

Compared to Olympus E-PM1

Sony A850
Olympus E-PM1
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Eye-level viewfinder
  • $500
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Less expensive
Panasonic GF5
Olympus E-PM1
  • $360
  • 4/3
  • Touchscreen
  • Higher effective ISO
  • $500
  • 4/3
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • Hot shoe

Compared to Panasonic GF3X

Sony A850
Panasonic GF3X
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Eye-level viewfinder
  • $750
  • 4/3
  • Less expensive
  • Lens selection
Panasonic GF5
Panasonic GF3X
  • $360
  • 4/3
  • Higher effective ISO
  • More dynamic range
  • $750
  • 4/3

Compared to Canon 5D Mark III

Sony A850
Canon 5D Mark III
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $2899
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Higher effective ISO
Panasonic GF5
Canon 5D Mark III
  • $360
  • 4/3
  • Less expensive
  • Touchscreen
  • $2899
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Eye-level viewfinder

Compared to Sony A99

Sony A850
Sony A99
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life
  • $1998
  • 35mm
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Focus peaking
Panasonic GF5
Sony A99
  • $360
  • 4/3
  • Less expensive
  • Lens selection
  • $1998
  • 35mm
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Focus peaking
Compare Other Cameras?