The image quality of the GX7 for roughly half the price? We post Panasonic GF7 First Shots


posted Thursday, April 23, 2015 at 4:46 PM EDT


When Panasonic announced the GF7 this past January they were quite clear in mentioning to us and to the camera world that the imaging pipeline in this little guy is basically the same as the one found in their highly acclaimed GX7, a camera that won our overall Best Enthusiast Mirrorless Camera in our 2013 COTY awards. That was no small feat, as there were many terrific enthusiast cameras unveiled that year, and it's also no small feat to offer the same basic imager in a smaller, lighter package that runs for about half the retail price!

But there's more to love on paper about the Panasonic GF7. It's only 1.5 ounces heavier than the stunningly diminutive GM5 that came out last year, and also shares the same basic burst performance specs of that model even though it retails for $300 less. Add to that the 180° LCD screen and an extended ISO down to 100 and you're looking at quite the unique little package for the price.

So does the image quality truly rival the GX7 which initially retailed for $1100, as they claim? Let our laboratory First Shots do the talking. Taking a quick initial glance at a few side-by-sides in our Comparometer shows that it does indeed appear to be the same basic imaging pipeline. Scrutinizing readers will want to take a closer look, not just against the GX7 but beside any other competitor you're currently considering acquiring. From the First Shots samples page you can also access JPEG images taken with the lowest noise reduction setting (filenames end in "NR1") and also any associated RAW files to download for your own conversion and analysis.

Here are a few 1:1 side-by-side crops from the Comparometer against the GX7 at their extended low ISOs as well as ISO 1600.

Panasonic GX7 • ISO 125 (low extended)                  Panasonic GF7 • ISO 100 (low extended)


Panasonic GX7                        ISO 1600                        Panasonic GF7

Whether you're looking to step up your game from the smartphone world, acquire a lightweight travel option to compliment your larger rig or just looking for a capable back-up to your primary MFT camera, you'll want to stay tuned for more to come on the GF7.

Panasonic GF7 Overview • Lab SamplesComparometer