Photography News Issue 70

Big test

IMAGES The Lumix S1 is festooned with buttons and dials on its sizable, weather- proofed body and handling is very good

SPECS

›  Prices S1 body £2199, S1 kit with S 24-105mm f/4 Macro OIS £2999 ›  Sensor 24.2megapixel, CMOS sensor ›  Sensor format 35.6x23.8mm, 6000x4000 pixels. High res mode 12,000x8000 pixels, 6K photo 5184x3456 pixels, 4K photo 3504x2336 pixels, HLG photo 5984x4000 full res ›  Aspect ratios 3:2, 4:3, 16:9, 1:1, 65:24, 2:1 ›  ISO range 100-51,200. Expansion to 50, 102,400 and 204,800 ›  Shutter range 60secs- 1/8000sec, Bmax 30mins. Electronic front shutter curtain 60secs to 1/2000sec, Bmax 30 mins. Electronic shutter 60secs to 1/8000sec, Motion picture 1/25-1/16,000sec ›  Drive modes Burst shooting in AFS and MF: H 9fps, M 5fps (with live view), L 2fps. InAF-C 6fps max (with live view). 6K photo 30fps, 4K photo 30fps ›  Viewfinder OLED with 5760k dots, 100% view, 0.78x, three magnification options ›  Focusing AFworks from -6EV to 18EV ›  Focus points 225 area. Auto detection. Face, eye, body, animal, tracking, zone (vertical/ horizontal), zone (oval and square), single area, single area pinpoint, custommodes, full area touch ›  Video Continuous recording 150 min (rear monitor), 140min LVF ›  Actual recordable time 75min (monitor), 70min LVF ›  Recording file format 59.94/50/29.97/25/23.98 MP4, high- speed video (3840x2160) 29.97 (sensor output 60fps), 4K MP4 HEVC (3840x2160) 29.97 72Mbps ›  Connectivity Bluetooth,Wi-Fi, HDMI, USB-C 3.1 ›  Image stabiliser Image sensor shift 5-axis/6EVbenefit. Dual IS 6.5EVbenefit ›  Other key features Dust and splash resistant, USB charging › Storage media 1xSD,1xXQD ›  Dimensions (wxhxd) 148.9x110x96.7mm › Weight S1 body, 898g Contact: panasonic.co.uk › Exposure modes PASM ›  Monitor 3.2in 2100k dots, tiltable, touchscreen MP4, H:264/MPEG-4 AVC, 4K (3840x2160)

PERFORMANCE: ISO

I shot various scenes, from low light to night, using the full ISO range with in-camera noise reduction turned off. The resulting Raws were processed inAdobe Lightroomwith no noise reduction.The TIF files shown here aremagnified at 100%. In this example shot at twilight, the exposure for the ISO 100 shot was 2secs at f/11.The Lumix S1 with the 24-105mm f/4 zoomwas fixed to a Gitzo Systematic carbon-fibre tripod and the shutter released using the camera’s self-timer. I’mvery impressed by the Lumix S1’s low levels of digital noise, even at very high ISOs. Comparing the ISO 100, 400 and 800 shots at 100%on screen revealed barely any image quality differences, with identical colour saturation, detail resolution and tonality.There was

a littlemore digital noise at the ISO 800 shot compared with the lower ISO shots, but it wasminimal and easily processed out.Youmight as well shoot at ISO 800 and benefit fromhigher shutter speeds to stop camera shake or subject movement. There is digital noise at ISO 1600, but it is soft, neutral and only really evident with direct comparison with the slower ISO shots. Looked at in isolation, I think the vast majority of photographers would be very happy with the image quality of the ISO 1600 shots.The same applies at the ISO 3200 setting. By the time you get to ISO 6400, the graining effect of digital noise ismore evident in areas of smoothmid-tones, but fine detail continues to look great and crisp, and colour saturation remains lively. As you would expect, digital noise continues to impact on image quality from ISO 12,800 and up, but even at that speed I think overall image quality is remarkable. It is only from25,600 upwards that detail suffers and the grain effect has a serious impact.The noise at these stratospheric ISO speeds is film-like and still neutral and it is only when you venture beyond the top native ISO speed of 51,200 that noise looks heavy, as you would expect. In summary, the Lumix S1 delivers an awesome ISO performance with critical quality at high speeds. If you shoot in low light and need high ISOs for action-stopping shutter speeds and low noise pictures, the Lumix S1’s credentials are impeccable.

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800

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6400

12,800

25,600

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Issue 70 | Photography News 43

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