Panasonic’s Lumix S5 power in a small package

Panasonic has officially unveiled the Lumix S5, a full-frame hybrid mirrorless that is designed to compete against cameras such as the Sony a7 III, Canon EOS R, and Nikon Z6. The Lumix S5 looks good as a compact and affordable full frame stills camera, but its video credentials are more impressive still.

The Lumix S5 captures 4K 60p/50p 4:2:0 10-bit video internally – the 60p frame rate combined with 10-bit recording already elevates it above most rivals.

Other options include 4K 30/25p 4:2:2 10-bit video recorded internally, and 4K 30p 4:2:0 8-bit internal recording with no time limit – made possible by Panasonic’s “exceptional” heat dispersal technology.

The Lumix S5 can record higher quality video to an external recorder via HDMI, with 4K 60/50p 4:2:2 10-bit available at launch and a firmware update to follow by the end of 2020 to allow 5.9K raw capture with an Atomos Ninja V. 

Panasonic’s V-Log/V-Gamut profiles are included, along with V-Log View Assist, Waveform Monitor and a variety of other recording modes including a 4:3 Anamorphic mode, Slow & Quick Motion (4K 1-60fps – 30x quick to 2.5x slow, FHD 1-180fps – 60x quick to 7.5x slow), 4K intervals shooting and 4K HDR.

The 24MP full frame sensor is the same as the one in the bigger Lumix S1, but the S5 also has Dual ISO seen in the Lumix S1H. (Image credit: Panasonic)

The Lumix S5 inherits the Dual ISO feature of the Lumix S1H, with two native ISO settings of ISO 640 and 4,000. This switches noise control circuits at high ISO settings for optimum high-sensitivity capture, which tops out at ISO 51,200. Panasonic says the S5 offers 14+ stops of dynamic range, to put it on a par with dedicated cinema cameras.

The firmware update, due by the end of 2020, will include the raw HDMI output already mentioned, plus C4K recording, Anamorphic 3.5K (3536×2656) at 50p and other video functions including Vector Scope Display, and Master Pedestal Adjustment and SS/Gain Operation (SEC/ISO, ANGLE/ISO, SEC/dB) 

Optional accessories for the Lumix S5 will include a Microphone Adaptor (DMW-XLR1) for XLR mics and others, a battery Grip (DMW-BGS5) with an extra battery for up to 940/3,000 shots, a Remote Shutter (DMW-RS2), DC coupler (DMW-DCC17) and Tripod Grip (DMW-SHGR1).

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