Panasonic S5 Field Review (video) and Full Gallery (including images w/ the Sigma 100-400mm!)
posted Wednesday, September 2, 2020 at 10:01 AM EDT
The all-new Panasonic S5 is an intriguing proposition. Coming off the scales weighing almost a third less than their hybrid S1 model from 2019, the trimmed down S5 aims to wow both enthusiasts and aspiring professionals with a full-featured, full-frame hybrid model costing just $2000.
Did they manage to pull the magic rabbit out of the hat?
I was treated by our friends at Panasonic to a full-production S5 sample a few weeks prior to its launch along with a few choice S-series lenses. I also got a last-minute bonus from our friends at Sigma in a sample of the new 100-400mm f/5-6.3 DG DN Contemporary lens, and so I packed it all up and headed for the coast to see what this new hybrid enthusiast model could rein in out in the wild.
The results from my trip to the coast are packed into 17 minutes of video comprising the overall feature set, technical specs, and the S5's shooting prowess. Over the course of my time with the camera I tested it with plenty of wildlife, explored the new Live View Composite mode, and of course touched on its video performance chops, including IBIS, 150fps and 180fps passes and timelapse functionality.
The bottom line for creating a well-rounded hybrid camera all comes down to balance. Enthusiast photographers want smaller, lighter, more affordable... but we also want things like IBIS, good weather sealing and high frame rate video. The Panasonic S5 strikes an incredible balance here, and my hope is that this balance comes across in this video.
With a 24mp Full Frame sensor and no optical lowpass filter onboard, the S5 is certainly equipped to deliver stunning images. And with the L-mount platform offering lenses from Sigma and Leica, the array of imaging possibilities very much expands. Our friends at Sigma were kind enough to provide a 100-400mm f/5-6.3 Contemporary for my trip, and I was able to make good use of it and a few teleconverters out in the field.
Head to our Panasonic S5 Gallery for many more images with this combination!