Written by Jacob Francois, Photographer
I’ve been taking photos since 2010, and I truly enjoy documenting life through my lens. When I’m out shooting on the streets, I usually prefer using prime lenses. However, ever since I started using the Lumix system, I’ve rediscovered my love for zoom lenses. In my opinion, as of 2023, the Lumix line of cameras is the most underrated gear for photography. While many people recognize Lumix cameras for their videography capabilities, I want to share how their photography features, combined with certain video features, can take your photography to the next level.
One standout feature is the Real-Time LUTs (Look-Up Tables) on the Lumix S5II and S5IIX. These cameras allow cinematographers (and photographers like myself) to apply LUTs to the camera’s live view and video output in real-time. This helps visualize the final image during production and speeds up the post-processing workflow. What’s interesting is that you can also apply Real-Time LUTs to still images, allowing you to achieve cinematic looks straight out of the camera.
Another useful feature is the Frame Marker on the S5II and S5IIX. These cameras let you select various aspect ratios (such as 4:3, 3:2, 16:9) and display frame lines on the screen. This feature is particularly helpful when cropping images to fit different application requirements. For instance, you can shoot with a 16:9 aspect ratio while having frame lines for 9:16, ensuring you capture the perfect composition for various platforms.
The Lumix system benefits from being part of the L mount alliance, which means I can use native Sigma and Leica glass on my camera. Additionally, Lumix offers a fantastic range of lenses, including lightweight f/1.8 primes (18mm to 85mm) and excellent zoom lenses like the 16-35mm f/4, 70-200mm f/4, and 24-105mm Macro.
One of the notable advantages of the Lumix system is its affordability. It’s a great option for beginners or those looking for a cost-effective setup. While the S5II has 24 megapixels (which is more than sufficient for most purposes), Lumix also offers the S1R with a higher resolution of 47.3 megapixels, catering to photographers who desire more detail in their images.
In addition to these features, I’ve been thoroughly enjoying other aspects of the S5II as well. The high-resolution mode allows me to capture stunning 96-megapixel RAW images, and I have the flexibility to choose the picture size within this mode. Moreover, the time-lapse and animation capabilities of the S5II are straightforward and encourage me to create captivating time-lapse sequences more often.