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Best Walk Around Camera | Lumix GF1

November 29, 2010

I grabbed the Panasonic GF1 on Saturday in Namdaemun. I gave up on Chungmuro after an hour or so of walking around in vain trying to nab a deal. I had worked in the area a few years ago, so I’m pretty familiar with what shops to check out. But honestly, there are far greater deals to be had in Namdaemun. I wasn’t only shopping for the Panasonic GF1 but also a series of lenses. All the prices I was being quoted were far and above what I found elsewhere, and were almost on par with what PixDix sells them for. PixDix is just about the last place in the city I’d shop for gear. Beautiful layout and friendly staff, but more than a premium price. Anyhow, I found a shop in Namdaemun and the sales guy threw in a 16GB SanDisk memory stick, custom leather case and UV filter for good measure. I’ve said it before, and I’ll reiterate now, Namdaemun is the best place to grab good deals here if you’re against shopping online.

Now I don’t ever see myself doing away with full-size DSLRs altogether, but I’m pretty impressed so far at just what this nifty Micro Four Thirds camera can do. I had spent the better half of Sunday around Garosugil at my new favourite brunch hangout, Le Brunchie (542-1985), for some Eggs Benedict (14,000), Chicken Salad (12,000) and a Cappucinno. I was pretty happy at how sharp the shots turned out. But pretty much any digital camera these days can take sharp shots during the daytime. What I really wanted to find out is just how well the GF1 could perform in low-light, handheld conditions. So later that evening, I headed over to Bongeunsa to see how the GF1 handled. I’m pretty critical when it comes to low-light situations because Nikon is light years ahead of the game when it comes to that. They have been for years. A few were duds, but the set below turned out pretty well. They were taken with the 20mm f/1.7 kit lens. I’ll be posting more sets this week.

I was considering the Olympus E-P1, the GF1′s immediate competitor, but I found the shutter lag annoying. The GF1 is pretty fast in comparison.

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12 Comments leave one →
  1. March 9, 2011 14:46

    This makes me regret my Canon G12 a little ;) I mean, I love it, but I would reeeeally appreciate some interchangeable lenses!

    Would you say that Namdaemun is the best place for camera deals in Seoul?

    • March 9, 2011 14:53

      Yep. The GF1 is the best portable DSLR out there. It’s super light which makes it great for longer trips. Namdaemun is the best place in the city I think to grab gear.

  2. November 30, 2010 11:18

    Thanks Greg. I appreciate you saying so.

    Funny you should say that. I’m trying to track down a reasonably priced adapter ring so I can start using my Nikkor lenses. I was actually going to grab the GF2 but I was reading that there wasn’t much improvement. Maybe I should have waited! Love the layout of your blog and your photo sets are fantastic. I’m really eager to get back and travel. We’re off to Europe in three weeks (Holland, Italy and possibly Ireland).

    Cheers, Zach. As a a matter of fact I’m planning to start throwing up videos up on here. 24fps is awesome and I think Canon is way in the lead with that. I was actually really veering toward the 7D at one point for that very reason. Thanks for that vid link.

  3. November 29, 2010 22:34

    MicroFT is the new hawtness… check out the big brother to the GF-1 and see what you think there. The GH-2 is still really small but the video quality is sick!! Plus if they release the “user13″ hacks for it, it can out perform most quality HD cams in image quality plus shoots at 24fps giving that cinema feel to it. Some videos are starting to surface here (http://vimeo.com/groups/gh1/videos)… maybe the Hermit can start going video??? ^^

  4. November 29, 2010 14:16

    Great series! I love this camera. I agree that 4/3 can’t replace the SLR yet, but hoping the sensors improve. That said, my GF1 is already getting as much shooting time as my Canon 5D. Picked up an adapter in Hong Kong that lets me use my older Voigtlander M-mount lenses too. So much fun… Keep up the good work. Loving your blog!

  5. November 29, 2010 14:09

    Thanks Steve. I’m pretty happy with the results so far. Will keep testing it out.

  6. November 29, 2010 11:18

    The camera performed very well in the low light situations! I’m very impressed!

  7. November 29, 2010 10:44

    Thanks Eddie. I’m pretty happy so far. Those are all handheld shots. I’ll be testing it out a lot more and posting more sets this week.

  8. November 29, 2010 09:48

    I like the shot of the doorway with the light coming through from the interior. The statue shot is nice too.

  9. November 29, 2010 09:43

    Agreed. Still trying to figure that one out. :)

  10. November 29, 2010 09:32

    The best part of PixDix is its name. Who the heck thought to call the store that?!

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