PANASONIC LUMIX G85 4K Mirrorless Camera, with 12-60mm Power O.I.S. Lens, Dual I.S. 2.0, 16 Megapixels, 3 Inch Touch LCD, DMC-G85MK (USA BLACK)
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The Panasonic LUMIX G85 offers over 27 LUMIX compact lens options built on the next-generation interchangeable lens camera standard (Micro Four Thirds) pioneered by Panasonic. Its “mirrorless” design enables a lighter, more compact camera body that includes cutting-edge video, audio, creative controls, wireless, intelligent-focusing, gyro sensor control in body image stabilization and exposure technologies not possible with traditional DSLRs. And with the exclusive LUMIX 4K Ultra HD video pause and export as a 4K PHOTO mode, you’ll never again miss that one shot that perfectly captures a scene.
Most helpful customer reviews
161 of 162 people found the following review helpful.
An underrated camera
I am an enthusiast and new to the micro 4/3 system. This is my own experience with using my new camera as compared to my previous and existing gear. I think it is unfair to rate it one star because of panning issues in video, besides a firmware update has already been released. I skipped the kit lens and got the Panasonic 12-35mm f2.8 instead. I did not encounter any such problems for this lens when IBIS or dual IS is on after the firmware update. My review is more on using this camera for stills.
Primary reasons why I bought the G85:
Lightweight and small, low profile, reasonable price of camera and lenses, good in lowlight conditions (with Dual IS), built-in bright EVF and LCD screen, versatile stills and video camera, customizable and easy user interface for a small mirrorless, weather sealed (water and dust resistant).
Camera features I really like:
• 4K Photo
• Silent mode
• Time-lapse option on the dial
• 11 customizable function butttons
• Customizable in-camera highlight and shadow. Cuts down work in post processing.
• Post focus and built-in Focus Stacking (JPEG only). I would prefer Focus Stacking output as RAW. However, with the highlight shadow feature setting I can pull up highlights and shadows in-camera and the JPEG result is still good. Hopefully RAW output will be included in the future.
Compared with the Sony a6000 (that I sold):
Focusing - The hybrid (w/ phase detect) autofocus with the a6000 is just phenomenal (now more impressive with the new a6500) but I don't shoot sports often. Contrast detect for the G85 is sufficient to track pets, kids, indoor sports (I prefer using the Panasonic 35-100mm f2.8). It can also track faster movement like birds in flight quite well. Short buffer on the a6000 compared to the G85.
Battery- Battery life is almost the same. Non-OEM batteries (Wasabi) used with the a6000 causes the camera to freeze. I had no problems with Wasabi batteries on the G85. Mirrorless cameras are notorious for sucking a lot of juice from your battery therefore you need to have at least two spare ones.
Powering On - Instantaneous on the G85. I can take pictures soon as I turn on the switch. Similar to my FF DSLR. With the a6000 it takes 2 to 3 secs to start up. Good luck if you use cheap batteries. I missed a lot of shots because of it.
Video - Of course, the G85 has an advantage with 4K does heats up quickly and so far after using it a couple or more times, it does not overheat. Sony a6000 starts heating up after taking video for more than 15 mins. It still plagues the a6300 and hopefully not the a6500. Diagonal panning issues and jitters have been resolved after the firmware update. Humming sound of the IBIS is still present with the G85. The humming can be picked up by the built in mic in a quiet environment. You need an external mic if you do need to record video in such conditions.
User interface - Love the DSLR like controls on the G85. Two dials (front and back) is very convenient in manual mode. Sony a6000 does not have intuitive controls like the G85. The G85 has 11 customizable function buttons (6 physical, 5 on the LCD screen), pressing a function button (physical) for 2 sec. will let you directly assign a function, not to mention the Q. MENU possibilities. What I like about this camera is that I can retain back button focusing when in PASM modes, and half pressed shutter focusing in auto mode which is not possible with my DSLR. The touchscreen and touch focusing feature with G85 is convenient and very responsive. Careful not to touch your nose on the screen though as it can move your focus point. Among some settings that are easily accessible when pressing the Exposure Compensation button (F1 by default) are Exposure Bracketing and Flash Compensation. Still looking for other cool stuff that this camera has in store.
IBIS and Dual IS - With Dual IS I can shoot even at 1/10th of sec. to even 1 sec. handheld and still get sharp images especially when paired with the 12-35mm f2.8 lens. The a6500 will have IBIS and dual IS on Sony lenses that has OSS.
Lenses - Reasonable prices for micro 4/3 lenses and other choices from Olympus, Rokinon or Sigma. Sony aps-c has limited zoom lenses and they are larger than micro 4/3. No Sony 24-70 f2.8 (35mm equivalent) for aps-c. Best I ever used is the Zeiss 16-70mm f4.0. Sony FF e-mount lenses are expensive. Main reason why I left Sony. If they have more lenses for aps-c and make it smaller and affordable, I may come back... maybe.
Image Quality - Love the IQ of photos taken with the a6000 but the IQ of the G85 is equally good despite having a smaller sensor. Just do not crop too much.
WiFi and Mobile App - The best I have ever used so far. It never prematurely disconnects, very capable controls and app performance is nearly flawless. Good job software team. The only caveat, as with all the other camera brand apps is that they only download images in JPEG. I only shoot in RAW and download my images to my iPad Pro using a card reader since I mostly edit my photos with Adobe Lightroom Mobile and later syncing and tweaking some of it on my PC. This is how rate my experience with the WiFi apps:
Very Good - Panasonic App w/ G85, Could have been Excellent if it downloads RAW.
Good - Sony PlayMemories w/ Sony a6000. Good controls but it disconnects. WiFi turned on quickly drains the battery.
Acceptable - Canon Camera Connect w/ Canon G7X Mark II (sold)
Mediocre - Nikon WMU w/ my D610 w/ wifi adapter, D5500 (sold). Limited controls and disconnects. Since I am an Apple user I cannot attest to how SnapBridge performs but still the app should work well with all platforms. As if Nikons software department is almost non-existent.
Why did I choose the G85 over the 1 inch sensor Canon G7X Mark II(sold)?
The G7X Mark II is an excellent camera because of its portability and performance in low light, but sometimes I needed a viewfinder. It is difficult to see anything on the LCD screen on a sunny day. Could not wait for the Nikon DL 18-50mm. Still no built in viewfinder and is priced at almost $1000. Sony RX 100 IV or V? Maybe. But soon as I got hold of this camera I just couldn't let go.
Why did I choose the G85 over the Sony a6500?
Price. The a6500 is $1500 . If I was thinking of getting the GH5, which is in the same price point, I would consider the a6500. However, native Sony aps-c E-mount lens selection is still limited.
Compared to my Nikon D610:
Image Quality - Full frame wins in this department, hands down. But if you only post photos in social media or don't print that often in large sizes then why need a full frame DSLR at all.
Weight and portability - I would rather equally enjoy taking photos and traveling without lugging heavy equipment. I would not drag my Nikon 80-200 f2.8D on overseas trips and would rather carry a Lumix 35-100mm f2.8 lens or Lumix 45-150mm lens. For most of my travels, I will just bring my Nikon 20mm f1.8G on my Nikon D610 for landscapes and Panasonic Lumix G85 cam and lenses (12-35mm f2.8, 35-100 f2.8 or the lighter and affordable 45-150mm f4.0-5.6) for walk-around.
Price - Micro 4/3 wins, camera and lenses! The pro grade Panasonic Lumix 35-100mm f2.8 lens with IS for the G85 is selling for $897 at this time of writing vs the expensive Nikon 70-200 f2.8G VRII for $2200+.
User Interface - Going from AF-S to AF-C on the D610 is a nuisance sometimes. Back button focusing resolves this issue and having it permanently on AF-C. Most DSLR users know this. The G85 however has a dedicated switch for AFS, AFC and MF. Awesome. I can take advantage of the 9 fps on AF-S or MF with focus peaking at any time. D610 has no wifi and touchscreen.
Build quality - My D610 looks and feels sturdier, however as light as it is, the build quality of the Panasonic G85 does not dissappoint.
Suffice to say, I am happy with my new camera system. I am a Micro 4/3 convert.
UPDATE: Purchased the Lumix 45-150mm, 35-100mm f2.8 and included sample photos. Night and long exposure shots of Union Square shot using Lumix 12-35 f2.8. Close up of xmas tree and skating rink shot at 1/15th, f2.8, ISO 800 handheld. Bird photos using the Lumix 35-100mm f2.8 at 100mm.
UPDATE 2: In video mode, microjitters are still apparent when using the long end of the Lumix 35-100mm f2.8, even after the firmware update. You may not want to shoot handheld at 100mm. No problems with the Lumix 12-35mm f2.8 which normally what I use for video anyway. Still a stellar performer.
53 of 57 people found the following review helpful.
Reasonably priced Micro 4/3s Progress
By C. Hawkins
I have been thinking of buying the OMD EM1 Mark 2. I am an enthusiast and take pictures of my family and for travel. Many years ago, I sold my Canon bodies/lenses to get into Micro 4/3’s. Like many, my investment in film lenses led me to Canon bodies in the electronic world. However, it became clear to me that the electronic world offered new opportunities as the technology improved. It looked like Micro 4/3 sensors would be the sweet spot for most photography in this new world. My first 4/3’s camera was a Panasonic. I loved it.
Later I upgraded to the OMD EM5 Mark 2 for the better-quality sensor, better in-body stabilization system, and small size. The technology was advancing.
Update: I have used the camera for some time now. There have been two firmware updates to improve stabilization and stabilization "hum" and I am using the Panasonic 100-400 with dual IS. I cannot say enough about how good this camera is, and at the price, it is a great value. I have added some pictures using the zoom lens and 12-60 lens for illustration.
Time passed, looking for my next upgrade. It is not picture quality driving me, but 4K video and, frankly handling. Don’t like the size of the existing OMD camera for handling. Just a bit too small physically.
Out comes the OMD EM1 Mark 2 for body only almost $2,000, but looks like better handling. Very professional features, especially fast focus and rapid fire. Also, higher pixel stills is interesting technology. But What. $2,000.
I found the G85. I bought it despite the stability issue. I do not have a noise issue in video. Price is right. I am using it and it meets my needs. (I expect a firmware update, but camera is entirely usable for photography, which is my focus, pun intended. I have also made some video’s and they are passable. There is a little “jump” at the start of the pan, but for me, I could survive. I expect that Panasonic will fix this, as the GX85 does not exhibit this behavior.)
Handling is much better with a larger size handle for holding and taking pictures. Still light and better than dslr’s for everyday picture taking. This is the next generation of Micro 4/3’s. Frankly, I like the on-off switches on the right side, and this does it. (You can set up the dual switch on EM2 2 to be the on-off switch but too expensive to buy just for this.)
Picture quality is superb. Not the reason to upgrade or switch brands.
I had forgotten, but I much prefer the Panasonic UI to the Olympus. I much prefer the Panasonic smartphone apps, in addition.
Micro 4/3’s is really where the action is, as there is strong and vibrant competition. I wish all markets were like this. I expect features to improve and prices to fall.
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful.
One of the best value cameras out today! Highly recommend to all!
By Lou Gabriel
One of the best value camera out there. Hands down.
For current users, I highly suggest to do the following: Go to menu --> Setup --> beep (page 2) --> Turn off the beep volume and E shutter volume
This was a huge annoyance for me at first, and I was relieved to find it in the settings.
Battery saving options are also within the page 2 of setup such as Live View Mode (30fps), Monitor Luminance, and Economy.
Stills quality is very nice and sharp, even from the 12-60mm kit lens. Image quality and bokeh are stunning when paired with the 25mm f1.7. The dual IS is really good for stills and even more amazing in video. Two custom settings within the dial are really helpful for saving your own shooting modes. I personally save Shutter-priority video moves to these in different recording formats (i.e. 4k30fps, FHD60fps). There are also plenty of fn buttons to customize. There are also color profiles to shoot in that may be customized. I find that the "Natural" profile to be the most pleasing in video. There is also Cine-D for those wanting a flatter look or for grading.
Weather sealed - Not much to say here other than, great!
Coming from a Nikon APSC camera, I am amazed at how light and robust the mirrorless form factor is. There is little fatigue in carrying it in your hands all day. The LCD screen that allows a full swivel is really neat for selfies/vlogging.
Finally... the video. Most buyers are probably here b/c of this and yes... it does not disappoint. The detail is amazing! BUT, the real shocker is the image stabilization. When paired w/ dual IS and E-stabilization turned on, the video is practically gliding (especially @ wider angles - 12mm). I am not joking. Walking with the camera is buttery smooth, no jittery videos.
It's only up to 16MP stills, though I still find the image quality to be very good even when an image has been cropped in edits.
I found that the image is a bit noisy at higher iso (6400 and above), though this is not really a bother to me. I find that it gives it a natural feel to lowlight shots. You can always dial it down with a bit of NR in Lightroom and other software.
A slight crop to the 4k video recording.
This was not a con for me, but others may think it. There's a lot to learn w/in the settings of this camera. Take the time to read the advanced handbook. Experiment!
In summary, I highly recommend this. If you are on the fence, JUMP OVER!