Offering a versatile feature-set to please photographers and videographers alike, the silver Lumix DC-GX9 from Panasonic is a Micro Four Thirds mirrorless camera that is also characterized by its rangefinder-inspired body design and sleek form factor. Featuring a 20.3 MP Digital Live MOS sensor, along with a Venus Engine image processor, the GX9 is able to record UHD 4K movies at 30 or 24 fps, record full-resolution stills at up to 9 fps with AF-S or 8MP stills at 30 fps, and work in difficult lighting situations with a top sensitivity of ISO 25600. Additionally, complementing the imaging capabilities, is a Dual I.S.2 system that offers the use of both in-camera and in-lens image stabilization systems to effectively minimize the appearance of camera shake by up to four stops.
In regard to the physical design, the GX9 incorporates a tilting 2.76m-dot electronic viewfinder and a tilting 3.0" 1.24m-dot rear LCD touchscreen to suit working from a variety of angles. A top dual dial affords direct adjustment of both exposure compensation and shooting mode settings, and the top plate also avails access to a hot shoe as well as a built-in pop-up flash. For remote use of the camera, integrated Bluetooth LE allows wireless control over the shutter and select shooting functions with a linked mobile device, and built-in Wi-Fi can also be used for transferring imagery to a smartphone or tablet.
20.3MP Digital Live MOS Sensor and Venus Engine
The 20.3MP Digital Live MOS Micro Four Thirds sensor pairs with the Venus Engine image processor to deliver fast overall performance, a wide dynamic range, with notable image quality to suit working in a wide variety of conditions. Sensitivity ranges from ISO 200 to 25600, with the ability to extend down to ISO 100 for working in bright conditions or with longer shutter speeds. Versatile burst shooting modes up to 9 fps also allow you to pair high continuous shooting rates with single-shot or continuous autofocus. For even faster performance, up to 30 fps at 8 MP using the 4K PHOTO Modes.
UHD 4K Video Recording
In addition to the versatile still shooting modes, the GX9 also supports recording UHD 4K video with either 30p or 24p frames rates at 100 Mb/s in the MP4 format. Full HD 1080p60 is also supported, in both MP4 and AVCHD formats.
4K PHOTO Modes
Utilizing the GX9's video recording capabilities, a trio of still shooting modes are available for recording continuous 8MP stills at a 30 fps shooting rate:
- Burst: this mode will allow you to continuously record, making it ideal for instances where you need a fast frame rate in order to capture the best moment.
- Pre-Burst: this mode is ideal for times when you're unsure of the critical moment to press the shutter button and will record images one second prior to and one second after pressing the shutter button in order to give you 60 frames to choose from.
- Burst (S/S): this mode most closely follows the video recording process, and allows you to playback your video, pause at the chosen moment, and use the shutter button to mark a chosen frame from the video and save it as a single 8MP frame.
Helping to achieve the utmost sharpness when photographing handheld, Dual I.S.2 combines the GX9's 5-axis sensor-shift image stabilization technology with lens-based image stabilization to compensate for a broader range of movement types to render sharper, clearer imagery. Dual I.S.2 requires the use of compatible Lumix lenses featuring O.I.S. This stabilization system is able to compensate for approximately four stops of camera shake.
Body Design and Built-In Bluetooth
- A large Live View Finder features a unique tilting design to benefit working from low angles and also has an impressive 2.76m-dot resolution and 0.7x magnification.
- A larger means for image composition and playback, the 3.0" 1.24m-dot rear LCD monitor has an 80° upward, 45° downward tilting design to support viewing from a variety of angles. It is also a touchscreen, which permits intuitive menu navigation and settings control.
- The sleek flat-body profile incorporates both front and rear dials for intuitive control over aperture and shutter speed settings. Stacked and dedicated top dials are also available for direct adjustment over exposure compensation and shooting mode selection.
- Built-in Bluetooth 4.2 (Low Energy) allows you to wirelessly control camera settings and release the shutter and maintains full-time connection between the camera and mobile device with low energy consumption. For wirelessly transferring files, Wi-Fi is available for faster transfer speeds.
For accelerated autofocus performance, DFD (Depth-From-Defocus) technology is employed to quickly calculate the distance to subjects and adjust the focusing position in as little as 0.07 seconds, which enables continuous shooting up to 6 fps with continuous AF. This contrast-detection type focus method benefits both still and video recording modes, as well as subject tracking applications where subject color, size, and motion vectors are used to intelligently lock-onto the moving subjects and ensure precise focus. Additionally, supporting working in low-light conditions, a Starlight AF feature enables accurate AF performance down to -4 EV.
Benefitting manual focus operation, focus peaking is available that highlights bright edges of contrast with a colored outline for quickly recognizing your focus point, as well as Touch MF Assist for touch-to-focus operation. MF Assist can also be used to increase magnification by up to 20x for more critical focusing on specific subjects.
Lumix G Vario 12-60mm f/3.5-5.6 ASPH. POWER O.I.S. Lens
Included with the camera body is this versatile 24-120mm equivalent wide-to-tele zoom, which is well-suited to a variety of shooting applications. This POWER O.I.S. system pairs with the camera's sensor-shift IS system, using Dual I.S., for effective control of camera shake for sharper handheld shooting. The lens also utilizes a trio of aspherical elements and one extra-low dispersion element to minimize spherical and chromatic aberrations for increased clarity and sharpness.
Other Camera Features
- A mechanical focal plane shutter enables a top maximum shutter speed of 1/4000 sec, as well as a top flash sync speed of 1/200 sec. An electronic shutter function also avails a top shutter speed of 1/16,000 sec to better enable working in bright conditions and with wider aperture settings.
- More than 100 consecutive full-resolution JPG files can be captured in a burst, or approximately 30 consecutive raw files in a single burst.
- Raw image files can be processed in-camera for a more streamlined post-production workflow.
- Depending on the lens in use, the included rechargeable battery provides approximately 260 shots per charge when using the rear monitor, or 250 with the electronic viewfinder.
- The L. Monochrome D mode in Photo Styles simulates a distinctly retro B&W film feeling to offer more options for producing captivating monochromatic imagery.
- Photo Style modes: Standard, Vivid, Natural, Monochrome, L. Monochrome, L. Monochrome D, Scenery, Portrait, and Custom. Each of these effects can be combined with Grain Effect to increase texture within images.
- Creative Control modes: Expressive, Retro, Old Days, High Key, Low Key, Sepia, Monochrome, Dynamic Monochrome, Rough Monochrome, Silky Monochrome, Impressive Art, High Dynamic, Cross Process, Toy Effect, Toy Pop, Bleach Bypass, Miniature Effect, Soft Focus, Fantasy, Star Filter, One Point Color, and Sunshine.