Site Sponsors
Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

  1. #1
    Member vincechu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    England - UK
    Posts
    213
    Post Thanks / Like

    Smile Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    Thought I'd share this here too:

    Hey everyone, I know a lot of people are interested in the LX5 and I just thought I'd share my thoughts about itin an on going real-life review. I'm going to do this casually and update with photos and when I notice something good or bad.

    Here's the past week:

    Instore
    I bought my LX5 last Monday. In store I played on one briefly before buying, and was delighted with the build quality (the LX5's [metal?] body feels solid) and classy and image quality (on the LX5's screen) looked very good.

    A little worry...
    When I got home and charged up the battery and fired a few test shots, I was very worried as I noticed pink/purple/green banding appearing on the LCD and in videos - it doesn't appear in still photos, so I returned my LX5 for another the day after for a replacement. However the replacement also did the same thing.

    I was really worried when I saw this banding, I started to think what happened to Panny's quality control!? and was pretty annoyed that a new camera at this price range had such a "flaw". But after a little research online and a call to Panasonic Support, it turns out this banding is normal for cameras with CCD sensors. The banding appears on the camera's screen when the camera is pointed at bright light sources (e.g. sunlight, and lightbulbs) and is very worrying (but you get used to it very slowly). The banding appears in recorded video but not in still images, and is worse when a wider aperture (stopping down helps) is used or the stronger the light source pointed at.

    See more about the banding here: A Guide to CCD and CMOS Sensor Technology

    And a quote from the LX5 manual regarding the banding:
    When recording pictures or half-pressing the shutter button, reddish stripes may
    appear on the LCD monitor. Alternatively, part or all of the LCD monitor may turn
    a reddish colour.
    This is a characteristic of CCDs, and it appears when the subject has
    a bright part. Some unevenness may occur in the surrounding areas,
    but this is not a malfunction.
    It is recorded in motion pictures but is not recorded on still pictures.
    It is recommended that you take pictures while taking care not to
    expose the screen to sunlight or any other source of strong light.
    I'm still not really happy about the banding, each time it appears on the LCD it's unnerving(? hope thats the right word to use).

    I'm not over the banding issue so why haven't I refunded or exchanged the camera then?

    Well I guess it's because I'm in love with it :blush: and it's like when you love a person, you might not like everything about them but you accept them with all of their good points and their bad points don't you?

    Fortunately with the LX5 there's a lot to love:

    1. Lens - The f/2 aperture helps a lot in lowlight and giving a shallow dof. Bokeh is very nice and smooth. The range 24-90mm equiv is fine for me, but others may find it limiting. I really like the wide end which I find useful for street.

    Bokeh:
    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006701926/" title="P1000053 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4146/5006701926_2a223cccef.jpg" width="500" height="333" alt="P1000053" /></a>

    So smooth the keyboard's keys are smoothed out, nice rounded bokeh:
    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006082459/" title="P1000049 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4107/5006082459_57ef865514.jpg" width="500" height="333" alt="P1000049" /></a>

    Wide angle:

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006059537/" title="P1000013 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4131/5006059537_6d9b310297.jpg" width="357" height="500" alt="P1000013" /></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006668732/" title="P1000012 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4122/5006668732_4bfe0fe802.jpg" width="375" height="500" alt="P1000012" /></a>

    2. Amazing macro ability, with the LX5 you can focus so close you're pretty much touching your subject with the lens, on paper thats a 1cm minimum focusing distance.

    The flower's about 1cm from the tip of the lens in these:

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006103253/" title="P1000075 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4083/5006103253_69e78695b6.jpg" width="500" height="333" alt="P1000075" /></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006109089/" title="P1000075bw by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4148/5006109089_32699dd46f.jpg" width="500" height="333" alt="P1000075bw" /></a>

    3. Build quality

    4. Appeareance, very cool (kind of retro) looks - especially with a viewfinder, the 2 part leather case and the included leather strap!

    5. Flash exposure is good - it doesn't white out everything! and you can adjust it's power in menu.

    6. Accessory port for EVF - I'm a big fan of viewfinders and use one when available, great for use when looking at the LCD is difficult because of bright light which leads me on to...

    7. The LCD is bright, clear and vibrant - much better than others I've used...

    8. ISO performance - very good for a compact and it certainly comes close if not matches my old Panasonic G1 (which I've sold it so can't do any comparisons)

    Here's a ISO12800 Sample (note the LX5 drops from 10megapixels to 3 from ISO 6400 upwards):

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5010538862/" title="P1000036 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4151/5010538862_964fd8175e.jpg" width="500" height="333" alt="P1000036" /></a>

    For my uses, small prints and viewing online ISO12800 from the LX5 isn't actually too bad ;-) I think in black and white the noise might actually look nice and add a grainy film effect.

    9. Built in creative options - Such as Pinhole filter and multiple exposure - some may find them gimmicky but I find them good fun.

    10. In camera horizon adjustment - I'm sure it'll come in useful in future ;-)

    11. Aspect ratio switch on lens barrel - makes changing aspect ratio really quick and I think this has made me think about which aspect ratio will help my composition have more impact e.g. landscape on 16:9

    Here's what I would change:

    1. The banding issue (surprised? :tongue

    2. Jpeg colour output as standard isn't great - colours too washed out (a little desaturated and flat) for my liking and I find I often have to spend time adjusting colours in Silkypix.

    3. The LCD, whilst bright and vibrant, doesn't give an accurate rendition of the image actually taken. Specifically the colours look more saturated and brighter on the LCD, so when you view the images on the PC, they seem under exposed and the colours washed out.

    Examples of 2 + 3 (out of camera jpegs):

    The first 2 photos are what Standard film mode looks like on the camera's LCD screen saturated and contrasty), but were actually taken using Dynamic film mode and with +2 in Saturation and +2 in contrast.

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5009843905/" title="P1010018 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4106/5009843905_319f50e3ed.jpg" width="500" height="375" alt="P1010018" /></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5009845351/" title="P1010019 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4104/5009845351_b0199b17bf.jpg" width="375" height="500" alt="P1010019" /></a>

    The next 2 are out of camera jpegs set to Standard film mode - see what I mean about washed out colours (we all know how bright the red on a Coca-Cola label looks like on real life).

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5010452468/" title="P1010020 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4145/5010452468_5b27e0a760.jpg" width="500" height="375" alt="P1010020" /></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5009848181/" title="P1010021 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4148/5009848181_431cd9e8a2.jpg" width="375" height="500" alt="P1010021" /></a>

    4. The selftimer button! I think i actually hate this (:tongue. The LX5 has one touch buttons for selecting focusing point, movie, ISO and a function button which I have mapped to metering mode. Personally I honestly don't see the point in dedicating a button for the selftimer, I can think of other more useful things to have one touch access to (such as white balance, focusing mode, flash power compensation, highlight warning on/off and film mode). I mean is it me or is self time one of the lesser used functions of a camera? lol Please Panasonic let us change the function of the selftimer button in a future firmware update :wink:

    That's all I really have to say for now, if you have any questions or anything you want me to try out and report back on, let me know and I'll try to help if I have time.

    In the mean time a few more photos:

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006119001/" title="P1000081 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4148/5006119001_f722b71913.jpg" width="375" height="500" alt="P1000081" /></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006690432/" title="P1000045 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4107/5006690432_54faa841b1.jpg" width="500" height="333" alt="P1000045" /></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006071531/" title="P1000041 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4144/5006071531_d74b5d38db.jpg" width="500" height="281" alt="P1000041" /></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006094083/" title="P1000057 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4145/5006094083_2a4b57bf17.jpg" width="500" height="281" alt="P1000057" /></a>

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5006677614/" title="P1000040 by vincechu89, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4150/5006677614_c60fff1468.jpg" width="375" height="500" alt="P1000040" /></a>
    Vince

  2. #2
    Member vincechu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    England - UK
    Posts
    213
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    So sorry everyone, I didn't realise html wasn't supported here.

    Admin/mods could you please help me delete this thread whilst I work on sorting the pictures out?
    Vince

  3. #3
    Super Duper
    Senior Member
    Terry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    6,955
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    1145

    Re: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    You want the whole thread nuked?
    You can just edit the post and switch over to making the images appear with links.

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    178
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    3

    Re: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    Have you tried the Samsung Ex1/TL500? It appears to be similar but without good video and it is on sale now

  5. #5
    Subscriber Member Streetshooter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    1,431
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    17

    Re: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    Vince,
    I find it very upsetting that Panny would make this camera for video use and know they have a banding issue. I don't do vids at all but it surprises me on the engineering and quality control.
    Is this a firmware fix or a permanent situation?
    Don

  6. #6
    Super Duper
    Senior Member
    Terry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    6,955
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    1145

    Re: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    I don't think everyone is speaking in the same language about banding. This isn't the banding seen in low light shadow area where the noise etc shows up as a pattern like the GH1. This is when you overwhelm the sensor pointing at a point of light. The LCD shows a pink streak on it. In still photography it is corrected but in video it becomes a problem. I don't think this is new with CCD's (but not my area of expertise).

  7. #7
    Member vincechu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    England - UK
    Posts
    213
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    Hi everyone,

    About the "banding", apologies, I think its more commonly known as CCD smearing, here's an example from Photography blog (a video): http://img.photographyblog.com/revie...dmc_lx5_01.mov

    Terry: I think I got back to the thread after my editing time was up, is there anything I can do about the images? If not perhaps I should start another thread with the images sorted out and post the link to that thread here? I have the review working at serious compacts but its in html, I could adjust it to work here i think.
    Vince

  8. #8
    Super Duper
    Senior Member
    Terry's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    6,955
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    1145

    Re: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    Vince - post it in the format you want just like another post on the thread and then I will go back in and edit the first post to make it all work.

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    178
    Post Thanks / Like
    Images
    3

    Re: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    Here is a OP from another site complaining about the smearing on LX5 video:

    http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=36435863

  10. #10
    Senior Member Braeside's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Fife, Scotland (UK)
    Posts
    1,171
    Post Thanks / Like

    Re: Panasonic LX5 - My ongoing review

    Many CCD video cameras do that smearing, I noticed it on my wife's FZ38 too when there are bright lights in the frame.
    The iPhone's CMOS does not do it, but CMOS can have other problems like the Jello effect.(Rolling shutter).

    A good article on this:

    http://dvxuser.com/jason/CMOS-CCD/
    David Anderson

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •