Panasonic has announced the launch of the Panasonic Lumix S5 with a Leica L Mount. Plus, a brand new kit combo with the Panasonic Lumix S5 and S 20-60mm F3.5-5.6 lens. The Lumix S5 announcement heralds yet another giant step in mirrorless camera development from Panasonic. What’s more, this full-frame mirrorless camera packs a lot into a compact and lightweight body. So what should you expect from such a camera?
Well, for starters, the Panasonic Lumix S5 features an impressive 24MP full-frame sensor with sensor-shift image stabilization. Couple this with a Leica L Mount compatible lens and you will find image quality exceeds expectation. When you shoot with this camera, you can push the limits of photography. ISO settings will keep you seeing the light at an expansion of ISO 50 – 204,800, or if you want to keep respectively in the exposure triangle the default range of ISO 100 – 51200 will suffice.
When looking at the lineup of other Lumix cameras in Panasonic’s range the S1 is the closest fit. Aside from the physical side between the two models, there are some significant differences which we will explore in the remainder of this article.
Lumix S5 Versus the Lumix S1: Big Things From A Tiny Package
The Panasonic Lumix S5 borrows heavily from the Lumix S1– but it still delivers its own qualities and enhancements. Compared to the early 2019 release Panasonic S1, as mentioned before the S5 is considerably smaller and lighter, weighing in at 714g in comparison to 1021g. Other differences include improved battery performance delivering an additional 60 shots per charge. In addition to the battery life, video performance is also stepped up. The Panasonic Lumix S5 features a higher bit rate of 200mbps over the S1’s 150mbps.
- 24MP – Full-frame CMOS Sensor
- No Anti-aliasing (AA) filter
- ISO 100 – 51200 (expands to 50-204800)
- Leica L Mount
- Sensor-shift Image Stabilization
- 3.0 Fully Articulated Screen
- 2360k dot Electronic Viewfinder
- 7.0 fps continuous shooting
- 4K (UHD) – 3840 x 2160 video resolution
- Built-in Wireless
- 133 x 97 x 82 mm
- Weather-Sealed Body
24MP For Stunning Image Quality
The Panasonic Lumix S5 features a full-frame 24.2MP CMOS sensor (same as the Panasonic S1) and the Panasonic Venus processing engine. Through this pairing, the S5 delivers outstanding low light performance and image quality due to its Dual Native ISO. It optimises colour reproduction while effectively suppressing image noise.
If you love the freedom to create expressive images, you’ll love the photo styles that offer nine colours, and three monochrome presets.
The Lumix S5 features amazing low-light management thanks to its high Signal-To-Noise ratio and standard ISO of 512000. The high-resolution mode captures an extraordinary level of exposure detail that is equivalent to 96MP single shot.
The Lumix features a new 6K photo mode allowing you to extract 18MP high-resolution images from the footage. Plus, the newly developed and compact mechanical shutter allows for shutter actuation at 1/8000 seconds.
Panasonic Lumix S5 – Focus & Stabilisation
When it comes to focusing, the Panasonic Lumix S5 features fast and pin-sharp autofocus performance. In addition to the already impressive face and pupil/recognition and human/body recognition, the S5 adds head recognition AF tracking. This is a boon for photographers interested in tracking sports and fashion on the go.
The Lumix S5 also features an impressive in-body image stabilisation with the Dual IS. It delivers up to 6.5 stops of image stabilisation performance elevating the shooting performance of the camera and the photographer.
Video Performance With a Myriad of Frame Rates
True to the heritage of Lumix S series cameras, the S5 delivers high-quality video recording ideal for the budding videographer. The new offering from Panasonic delivers silky smooth 4K at an impressive 60p with both 4K and Full HD recording in 10bit for outstanding colour grading. Perfect for filmmakers and YouTubers. With the recording output set to 4K at either 60p/30p/24p10bit, you can continuously record for up to 30 minutes. This meets the needs and demands of creatives the world over. What’s more, if you are shooting with a lower bit rate of 8bit at 30/24p or in Full HD, you have limitless recording time – with temperature considerations.
If you are looking for cinematic quality dynamic range, the Panasonic Lumix S5 delivers 14+ stops when recording video. With such high dynamic range, shadow and highlight details are gradual meaning high contrast footage isn’t a concern. Also, both V-Log and V-Gamut grading produces incredible colour rendering in every corner of the frame, making post-production a dream.
On the mode dial, Panasonic’s slow and quick mode is easy to find ensuring you can record at either 2.5x as slow (60 frames per second) or up to 5x time slower (120 frames per second). If quality isn’t too much of a concern, there’s even an option of 7.5x slower (180 frames per second) at a recording resolution of FHD.
Panasonic Lumix S5 – Designed For Comfort And Flexibility
The Panasonic Lumix S5 is built solid with an ergonomically considerate form. Plus, at only 714g, you can comfortably carry this camera without any hint of fatigue. With a much smaller body than the Lumix S1, the S5’s dimensions are 133 x 97 x 82 mm.
The weather-sealed body ensures that you can be out in any conditions without any concern for the safety of your gear. What’s more, thanks to the new higher capacity DMW-BLK22 battery and optional DMW-BGS5 battery grip, you can be out for longer. The Lumix S5 offers creative flexibility thanks to its 1.84 million-dot 3 inch free-angle rear monitor. The screen is smaller than the Panasonic S1 at 3.2 inches, however, it is still adequate for many shooting environments. Shoot from multiple angles and see all the action live. In addition, the S5 features a bright and brilliant 2.36 million dot OLED viewfinder.
An Alliance of Lenses Covering Many Genres
There’s a plethora of full-frame Leica, Sigma and Panasonic lenses to choose from (31 lenses in total). As part of the L-Mount alliance, Panasonic is kicking goals. For instance, if you are into portraiture, you could bundle the S5 body with a Leica Summilux-SL 50mm F1.4 ASPH. Such a beautiful lens produces excellent bokeh and superb image sharpness. Or, for landscape photographers, there’s the Leica Vario-Elmarit-SL 24-90mm F2.8-4 ASPH. This lens combination on the S5 body presents a remarkable feature of sensor-shift Image Stabilisation, ensuring any handheld work is free of image blur.
Panasonic have also announced the Lumix S 20-60mm F3.5-5.6 both as part of a kit with the S% and as a standalone option.
The Panasonic Lumix S5 is an ideal fit if you are looking for a reliable, small camera for both video and stills. Due to the compact size, we would highly recommend this setup with a kit lens for travel photography or shooting 4K videos for YouTube. Sports and wildlife photographers may also find a use for this camera with a frame rate of 7 frames per second however if there are other models such as the Panasonic Lumix S1 that offer 9 frames which could be the difference in obtaining the next award-winning shot.
What’s great to see here is Panasonic’s dedication to the Leica L-Mount. Along with Leica and Sigma, the alignment seems to be a perfect trinity in quality, affordable and range when compared with the traditional such as Canon and Nikon.