Wednesday 17 July 2019

Panasonic releases Lumix S1 and S1R cameras to go after Canon and Nikon

Panasonic Lumix S1
Panasonic Lumix S1
Adrian Weckler

Adrian Weckler

Panasonic has released what it hopes will rival the professional camera ranges from Canon, Nikon and Sony.

The new Lumix S1 and S1R cameras incorporate ‘full frame’ technology with many of the stabilisation and video features of Panasonic’s professional video-centric GH5s range.

Both Leica and Sigma have announced that they will make lenses for the new camera system, as well as Panasonic.

The Lumix S1 has a 24-megapixel sensor and is geared toward video professionals, with no 30-minute recording limit except for 4K at 60 frames per second — 4K at 30 frames or ‘full HD’ can run beyond 30 minutes.

However, it doesn’t have a flip-out screen, just a tilting one.

Meanwhile the S1R is aimed more at still photographers, with a 47-megapixel sensor.

Both cameras use in-body stabilisation that gives between 5 and 6 stops of benefit, depending on whether the lens is also stabilised. This is a big difference over rivals such as Canon, Nikon and Sony, which depend on stabilisation in the lenses.

Both cameras have dual card slots, an advantage over Canon’s current EOS R mirrorless camera and Nikon’s Z6 and Z7 models.

They’re also relatively big and heavy, weighing over a kilogram without a lens attached, which is significantly heavier than Canon’s EOS R or Nikon’s Z series full frame mirrorless cameras.

Panasonic has released three new custom lenses for the system, a 50mm f1.4, a 70-200mm f4 and a 24-105mm f4 Macro. The latter two lenses feature optical image stabilisation. Panasonic says that there are three more lenses to come by the end of the year,as well as whatever Sigma and Leica introduce.

The cameras are priced close to the level of full-frame mirrorless rivals from Canon and Nikon.

The 24-megapixel Lumix S1 costs €2,499 for the body alone or €3,399 for the ‘kit’, which includes the 24-105mm f4 lens.

Meanwhile, the 47-megapixel S1R model costs €3,799 for the body only or €4,799 for the kit option with the 24-105mm f4 lens.

Separately, the three lenses are priced at the high end of the market.

The 50mm f1.4 lens costs a whopping €2,599, while the 70-200mm f4 costs €1,999. Even the 24-105mm f4 costs €1,399.

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