• APS-C 369.7mm2
  • 14.2 megapixels
  •  
  • 4/3 224.9mm2
  • 16.1 megapixels
  • ISO 200 - 12,800

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Differences

Sony NEX-3 advantages over Panasonic GH3

  • Larger sensor
    APS-C vs 4/3
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • Bigger pixels
    ~ 5.16 vs 3.75 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)
  • In-camera panoramas
    Yes vs No
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Thinner
    33 mm vs 82 mm
    Thinner
  • More dots on screen
    922k vs 614k dots
    Can mean greater resolution or a brighter screen

Panasonic GH3 advantages over Sony NEX-3

  • Lens selection
    Excellent vs Good
    Better lens selection gives you more options
  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Tilt-swivel vs tilt-only
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Eye-level vs Rear display only
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • Touchscreen
    Touch vs No touch
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Wi-Fi vs None
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • Longer stills battery life
    More info 540 vs 330 shots
    Capture more photos
  • Internal flash
    Internal flash vs None
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • External Mic Jack
    Jack vs No jack
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • Newer
    6 years vs 8 years old
    Newer cameras often support more advanced features
  • Shoots 24p video
    Yes vs No
    Gives your movies a big-screen feel
  • Shoots 1080p video
    Yes vs No
    You'll want this if you shoot video
  • Less shutter lag
    0.21 vs 0.44 sec
    Focus and take a photo quickly (wide angle)
  • Shoots 60p video
    Yes vs No
    A faster framerate can give you more editing options
  • Headphone jack
    Yes vs No
    Monitor audio recording while you shoot video
  • Longer exposure
    60 vs 30 sec
    Long exposures for night shots
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    6.1 fps vs 2.7 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    Unlimited vs 38 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)
  • Higher extended ISO
    25600 vs 12800 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
  • Hot shoe
    Both provide
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities
  • Bulb shutter
    Both provide
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures

Common Weaknesses

  • Focus peaking
    Neither provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Neither provide
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • 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
  • Top deck display
    Neither provide
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • Dual card slots
    Neither provide
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • Slow-motion videos
    Neither provide
    Shoot slow-motion videos

User reviews

Buy From

Review Excerpt

  • Professional quality video in a compact body; Still image quality ranks with the best mirrorless models and even some prosumer DSLRs; Fast autofocus; Rugged, weatherized camera build; Reasonably priced for its advanced feature set; Large selection of high quality lenses.

  • Not as compact as most mirrorless cameras; Live View not available during high speed bursts; High ISO image quality and dynamic range not quite as good as top APS-C cameras.

The Competition

Compared to Sony NEX-5

Sony NEX-3
Sony NEX-5
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • $700
  • APS-C
Panasonic GH3
Sony NEX-5
  • $823
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • $700
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Sony NEX-C3

Sony NEX-3
Sony NEX-C3
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
  • $559
  • APS-C
  • Higher effective ISO
  • Longer stills battery life
Panasonic GH3
Sony NEX-C3
  • $823
  • 4/3
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Lens selection
  • $559
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Sony NEX-5N

Sony NEX-3
Sony NEX-5N
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Fast startup
  • $700
  • APS-C
  • Higher effective ISO
  • Longer stills battery life
Panasonic GH3
Sony NEX-5N
  • $823
  • 4/3
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Lens selection
  • $700
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Olympus E-M1

Sony NEX-3
Olympus E-M1
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $1099
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Focus peaking
Panasonic GH3
Olympus E-M1
  • $823
  • 4/3
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • $1099
  • 4/3
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization

Compared to Panasonic GH4

Sony NEX-3
Panasonic GH4
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $798
  • 4/3
  • Lens selection
  • Focus peaking
Panasonic GH3
Panasonic GH4
  • $823
  • 4/3
  • $798
  • 4/3
  • Focus peaking
  • Shoot 4K video
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