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Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5

Portability
66
Imaging
52
Features
80
Overall
63
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 front
 
Panasonic Lumix DMC-SZ5 front
Portability
95
Imaging
38
Features
34
Overall
36

Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 Key Specs

Panasonic GH3
(Full Review)
  • 16MP - Four Thirds Sensor
  • 3" Fully Articulated Display
  • ISO 200 - 12800
  • 1920 x 1080 video
  • Micro Four Thirds Mount
  • 550g - 133 x 93 x 82mm
  • Announced September 2012
  • Previous Model is Panasonic GH2
  • Replacement is Panasonic GH4
Panasonic SZ5
(Full Review)
  • 14MP - 1/2.3" Sensor
  • 3" Fixed Display
  • ISO 100 - 1600 (Expand to 6400)
  • Optical Image Stabilization
  • 1280 x 720 video
  • 25-250mm (F3.1-5.9) lens
  • 136g - 104 x 58 x 21mm
  • Announced July 2012
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Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 Overview

Here is a in-depth analysis of the Panasonic GH3 versus Panasonic SZ5, former being a Advanced Mirrorless while the other is a Small Sensor Compact and both are produced by Panasonic. The image resolution of the GH3 (16MP) and the SZ5 (14MP) is very similar but the GH3 (Four Thirds) and SZ5 (1/2.3") boast totally different sensor dimensions.

Photography Glossary

The GH3 was unveiled 3 months later than the SZ5 so they are both of a similar age. Both cameras feature different body design with the Panasonic GH3 being a SLR-style mirrorless camera and the Panasonic SZ5 being a Compact camera.

Before delving right into a detailed comparison, here is a brief highlight of how the GH3 grades vs the SZ5 when considering portability, imaging, features and an overall rating.

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Reasons to pick Panasonic GH3 over the Panasonic SZ5

 GH3 SZ5 
Manual focus Very precise focus
Display typeFully ArticulatedFixed Fully Articulating display
Display resolution614k230kSharper display (+384k dot)
Selfie screen Take selfies
Touch friendly display Easily navigate

Reasons to pick Panasonic SZ5 over the Panasonic GH3

 SZ5 GH3 

Common features in the Panasonic GH3 and Panasonic SZ5

 GH3 SZ5 
AnnouncedSeptember 2012July 2012Similar age
Display size3"3"Same display sizing

Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 Physical Comparison

For anyone who is going to carry your camera often, you will want to take into account its weight and measurements. The Panasonic GH3 comes with external measurements of 133mm x 93mm x 82mm (5.2" x 3.7" x 3.2") with a weight of 550 grams (1.21 lbs) and the Panasonic SZ5 has proportions of 104mm x 58mm x 21mm (4.1" x 2.3" x 0.8") along with a weight of 136 grams (0.30 lbs).

Check the Panasonic GH3 versus Panasonic SZ5 in our brand new Camera plus Lens Size Comparison Tool. Camera Size Comparison with Lenses

Remember that, the weight of an ILC will change based on the lens you have at the time. Following is a front view sizing comparison of the GH3 vs the SZ5.

Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 size comparison

Taking into account dimensions and weight, the portability rating of the GH3 and SZ5 is 66 and 95 respectively.

Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 top view buttons comparison

Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 Sensor Comparison

More often than not, it is hard to envision the gap between sensor sizing just by reviewing a spec sheet. The photograph below may give you a clearer sense of the sensor sizing in the GH3 and SZ5.

As you can see, both of those cameras come with different megapixel count and different sensor sizing. The GH3 with its larger sensor will make getting shallow depth of field simpler and the Panasonic GH3 will deliver more detail having an extra 2 Megapixels. Greater resolution will also enable you to crop images a good deal more aggressively.

Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 sensor size comparison

Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 Screen and ViewFinder

Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 Screen and Viewfinder comparison
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Photography Type Scores

Portrait Comparison

Panasonic GH3 Portrait photography features
Panasonic SZ5 Portrait photography features
71
you can focus manually
good megapixels (16 megapixels)
good sensor size (Four Thirds)
comes with face detection focus
exports RAW files
34
good resolution (14 megapixels)
features face detection focus
manual focus not available
lack of manual exposure
can't use external flash
sensor is tiny (1/2.3")
doesn't have RAW files
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Street Comparison

Panasonic GH3 Street photography advice
Panasonic SZ5 Street photography advice
65
screen can move to multiple angles
good sensor size (Four Thirds)
exports RAW files
comes with touch to focus
environment proofing
does not have image stabilization
more heavy than competitors in class (550 grams)
63
built in image stabilization (Optical)
lighter than competition in class (136g)
screen does not articulate
sensor is tiny (1/2.3")
doesn't have RAW files
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Sports Comparison

Panasonic GH3 Sports photography factors
Panasonic SZ5 Sports photography factors
63
high max fps (20.0 frames per second)
good megapixels (16MP)
good sensor size (Four Thirds)
comes with tracking autofocus
environment proofing
great battery power (540 CIPA)
does not have image stabilization
lack of phase detect auto focus
40
built in image stabilization (Optical)
good resolution (14MP)
features tracking autofocus
slow continuous shooting (2.0 frames per second)
lack of shutter priority mode
sensor is tiny (1/2.3")
doesn't have phase detect auto focus
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Travel Comparison

Panasonic GH3 as a Travel photography camera
Panasonic SZ5 as a Travel photography camera
71
great battery power (540 CIPA)
environment proofing
comes with touch to focus
good megapixels (16MP)
flash built-in
screen is selfie friendly
more heavy than competitors in class (550 grams)
70
lighter than competition in class (136g)
good resolution (14MP)
built-in flash
fairly wide (25mm)
great zoom (250mm)
doesn't have Timelapse mode
display isn't selfie friendly
sluggish max aperture (f3.1)
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Landscape Comparison

Landscape photography with Panasonic GH3
Landscape photography with Panasonic SZ5
71
you can focus manually
interchangeable lenses (Micro Four Thirds mount)
screen size is good (3 inches)
good megapixels (16 megapixels)
good sensor size (Four Thirds)
exports RAW files
environment proofing
great battery power (540 CIPA)
does not have image stabilization
42
fairly wide (25mm)
screen size is good (3 inches)
built in image stabilization (Optical)
good resolution (14 megapixels)
manual focus not available
cannot swap lens (fixed lens mount)
sluggish max aperture (f3.1)
lack of manual exposure
sensor is tiny (1/2.3")
doesn't have RAW files
doesn't have Timelapse mode
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Vlogging Comparison

Panasonic GH3 Vlogging factors
Panasonic SZ5 Vlogging factors
65
screen is selfie friendly
screen is touchscreen
comes with face detection focus
video resolution high (1920 x 1080 resolution)
does have external microphone port
does not have image stabilization
more heavy than competitors in class (550 grams)
32
fairly wide (25mm)
built in image stabilization (Optical)
features face detection focus
lighter than competition in class (136 grams)
sluggish max aperture (f3.1)
display isn't selfie friendly
video resolution low (1280 x 720 resolution)
doesn't have external microphone support
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Panasonic GH3 vs Panasonic SZ5 Specifications

Detailed spec comparison table for Panasonic GH3 and Panasonic SZ5
 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3Panasonic Lumix DMC-SZ5
General Information
Make Panasonic Panasonic
Model Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH3 Panasonic Lumix DMC-SZ5
Type Advanced Mirrorless Small Sensor Compact
Announced 2012-09-17 2012-07-18
Physical type SLR-style mirrorless Compact
Sensor Information
Powered by Venus Engine VII FHD -
Sensor type CMOS CCD
Sensor size Four Thirds 1/2.3"
Sensor measurements 17.3 x 13mm 6.08 x 4.56mm
Sensor surface area 224.9mm² 27.7mm²
Sensor resolution 16MP 14MP
Anti aliasing filter
Aspect ratio 1:1, 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9 1:1, 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9
Highest resolution 4608 x 3456 4320 x 3240
Highest native ISO 12800 1600
Highest boosted ISO - 6400
Minimum native ISO 200 100
RAW photos
Autofocusing
Focus manually
AF touch
AF continuous
AF single
AF tracking
AF selectice
AF center weighted
Multi area AF
Live view AF
Face detect focusing
Contract detect focusing
Phase detect focusing
Number of focus points 23 23
Lens
Lens mount Micro Four Thirds fixed lens
Lens focal range - 25-250mm (10.0x)
Maximum aperture - f/3.1-5.9
Macro focus distance - 5cm
Number of lenses 107 -
Focal length multiplier 2.1 5.9
Screen
Type of display Fully Articulated Fixed Type
Display diagonal 3" 3"
Resolution of display 614 thousand dots 230 thousand dots
Selfie friendly
Liveview
Touch operation
Display tech OLED Monitor with static touch control TFT Screen LCD
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder type Electronic None
Viewfinder resolution 1,744 thousand dots -
Viewfinder coverage 100% -
Viewfinder magnification 0.67x -
Features
Lowest shutter speed 60s 8s
Highest shutter speed 1/4000s 1/1600s
Continuous shooting rate 20.0 frames/s 2.0 frames/s
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Expose Manually
Exposure compensation Yes -
Custom WB
Image stabilization
Built-in flash
Flash range 12.00 m 5.60 m
Flash modes Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Slow Sync Auto, On, Off, Red-eye, Slow Sync
Hot shoe
AEB
WB bracketing
Highest flash synchronize 1/160s -
Exposure
Multisegment exposure
Average exposure
Spot exposure
Partial exposure
AF area exposure
Center weighted exposure
Video features
Supported video resolutions 1920 x 1080 (60, 50, 30, 25 24 fps) 1280 x 720 (60, 50, 30, 25fps), 640 x 480 (30, 25fps 1280 x 720p ( 30,25 fps), 640 x 480 (30, 25 fps)
Highest video resolution 1920x1080 1280x720
Video file format MPEG-4, AVCHD, H.264 MPEG-4
Microphone support
Headphone support
Connectivity
Wireless Built-In Built-In
Bluetooth
NFC
HDMI
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec) USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
GPS None None
Physical
Environmental sealing
Water proof
Dust proof
Shock proof
Crush proof
Freeze proof
Weight 550 gr (1.21 pounds) 136 gr (0.30 pounds)
Physical dimensions 133 x 93 x 82mm (5.2" x 3.7" x 3.2") 104 x 58 x 21mm (4.1" x 2.3" x 0.8")
DXO scores
DXO All around score 71 not tested
DXO Color Depth score 22.7 not tested
DXO Dynamic range score 12.4 not tested
DXO Low light score 812 not tested
Other
Battery life 540 images 250 images
Form of battery Battery Pack Battery Pack
Self timer Yes (2 or 10 sec, 10 sec (3 images)) Yes (2 or 10 secs)
Time lapse feature
Storage type SD/SDHC/SDXC SD/SDHC/SDXC, Internal
Card slots Single Single
Retail cost $799 $195