Review Panasonic G5 Imatest results

Panasonic G5 test report: Imatest results

This is an attachment of our Panasonic G5 review. The measurements for our Lumix G5 review have been carried out with Imatest. For the test method and explanation of terms, see FAQ. Conclusion and sample images are shown in our Panasonic G5 review.


Resolution Panasonic G5

The Panasonic Lumix G5 and the Panasonic 14-42 X PZ deliver nice sharp jpg files and RAW files (using a standard processing with Lightroom). We measured an (averaged over ISO 169 m- 6400) resolution of 2000 LW/PH. Panasonic G3 en licht - meetbaar, maar niet voor het blote oog zichtbaar - lager dan de resolutie van de Panasonic GX1.">This is about as good as the resolution of the Panasonic G3 and slightly less - measurable, but not visible to the naked eye - than the resolution we measured for the Panasonic GX1.
We analyse all RAW files from different cameras using the same processing parameters in Lightroom, which enables the comparison of camarea perfomances, but does not yield the optimum result for each individual camera.
With a tweaked processing of RAW files, a slightly increased sharpness will be obtained.


Dynamic range Panasonic G5

Until now, the dynamic range has been the Achilles heel of micro-43 cameras. But the Panasonic G5 showed very good results in our Imatest measurements. The total dynamic range of the Panasonic G5 RAW files is as good as that of the Olympus OM-D E-M5 or the dynamic range of SLR cameras with an APS-C sensor, like the Nikon D3200 . The total dynamic range of a RAW file without noise reduction is (averaged over 160-6400 ISO) 9 stops, with a maximum of 11 stops at 160 ISO. The total dynamic range of a jpg file with a sharp noise - on average about 160 to 6400 ISO - 9 stops. For the test method and explanation of terms, see FAQ. More important for a photographer than the total dynamic range, is the useful dynamic range: G5-Dynamic-range-RAW-400-ISO
An increasing noise reduces the dynamic range of RAW files to a usable dynamic range of 7 stops at the low ISO settings up to 0.5 stops at ISO 12800. The usable dynamic range of jpg files ranges from almost 10 stops at 160 ISO down to approximately 4 stops at ISO 6400.

At high ISO settings, the usable dynamic range of the Panasonic G5 jpg files is larger than that of the competition. But that's because Panasonic G5 applies ‚Äč‚Äčrelatively high noise reduction, which in turn is at the expense of fine details.


The jpg files perform in our measurements, because of in-camera noise reduction, seemingly better at all ISO settings than the RAW files. Yet that is not so. We test the RAW files without noise reduction. Thus you maintain the highest possible detail in the recordings, while the noise although measurable, but not visible in print. If you carefully adjust contrast, sharpening and noise reduction in RAW files, it is possible to obtain a usable dynamic range for RAW files better than or equal to that of jpg files.

Noise Panasonic G5

At low ISO settings to get low noise and against the images of the Panasonic G5 beautiful. To ISO 1600 is shown in the jpg files no noise.
Comparison of noise in jpg files with the measured noise in RAW files without noise reduction, shows that the jpg files noise occurs at all ISO settings.
The amount of noise in a RAW file without noise reduction is approximately equal to the amount of noise in een12.800 ISO jpg file, but it does have to jpg file detailing lost compared to the RAW file.


In the image below, to the left, crops of shots of a gray card taken at different ISO settings are shown. All these crops of RAW files witout any noise reduction are shown at 100% in order to help you identy differences. When you apply noise reduction to RAW files, and almost anyone does, you will obtain images with even less noise.

Taking a look at thecrpopped ISO 6400 RAW files shown below to the right, you can see that the Panasonic G5 in terms of noise is slightly improved compared to the Panasonic G3. The Panasonic G5, Olympus OM-D E-M5 and the Canon 650D do not differ much.

G5-noise 6400-ISO-RAW-noise

Color accuracy @ daylight Panasonic G5


Color accuracy (Delta E 94) Panasonic G5 @ daylight

  • Average 4,9 (RAW) / 7.0 (jpg)
  • Best 4.7 RAW @ 400 ISO
  • Worst 7.4 jpg @ 200 ISO
  • Skin tones: 4,8 (RAW) / 6.5 (jpg)
  • Natural colors: 5 (RAW) / 10 (jpg)
  • Vivid colors: 3.2 (RAW) / 7.1 (jpg)
  • Whitebalance: 2.8 (RAW) / 3.5 (jpg)
The Panasonic G3, G5 and GX1 evade each little in terms of color reproduction in daylight. The GX1 scored by our measurements a little better than the Panasonic Panasonic G3 G5 and a little less. But the practice shots will not recognize these differences.

The illustration shows the color error of a 160 ISO jpg picture is taken in daylight. Click image for larger version. The further the ideal color (square) is removed from the color of the camera (circle), the greater the color difference.

Color accuracy @ tungsten light Panasonic G5


Color accuracy (Delta E 94) Panasonic G5 @ tungsten light

  • Average: 19.7 (RAW) / 18.7 (jpg)
  • Best: 18.4 jpg @ 12800 ISO
  • Worst 20.3 RAW @ 6400 ISO
  • Skin tones: 17 (RAW) / 17.4 (jpg)
  • Natural colors: 22 (RAW) / 21 (jpg)
  • Vivid colors: 15.6 (RAW) / 15 (jpg)
  • Whitebalance:  28 (RAW) / 17.8 (jpg)

In artificial light, you can, both for the jpg (picture style: standard) as RAW files, not blindly trust the auto white balance, as clearly seen in the results shown for a 200 ISO jpg file. This is still common for contemporary digital camera's.

Click at the image for a larger version.

Picture Styles; Standard vs Natural

Many photographers will probably be a little happier with the images in the standard image style than with the natural image style, which provides the most accurate color reproduction. In the standard picture style, the colors red, green and blue more saturated than in the neutral picture style. The differences are perhaps easier to recognize in measurement results (Click the right image for larger version) than in a practical example. The Panasonic G5 review is a practice shooting with both the standard and image style course was created.


Picture Styles; Standard vs Vivid

The Vivid color style delivers images with clearly more saturated colors than the standard picture style. The vivid color style also yields images with a higher contrast. It made me think of the very saturated colors of the Fujichrome Velvia.  Fujichrome Velvia colors rocked, but were not very accurate.

Click at the image at the right for Imatest results for the Standard color style and the vivid color style.

Ivo Freriks
Author: Ivo Freriks
With Camera Review Stuff I hope to make a modest contribution to the pleasure that you get from photography. By testing cameras and lenses in the same way, evluating the results and weighing up the pros and cons, I hope to help you find the right camera or lens.

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