Panasonic have been pioneering the mirrorless market for some time now and releasing solid model after solid model. The Lumix series now has models that cover all ranges of abilities and types of photographer. The G85 came in as a perfect model for enthusiasts – with a strong feature set, lightweight and an attractive price tag. Whereas the G9 came into play to sit as the step up from the enthusiast range, more money, more features, more megapixels and so on.
But what are the real differences that set these models apart? Well, one of the biggest differences between these two is the price – the G9 is around £850 more expensive than the G85 (body only), which is quite a significant difference for most of us. So what is it that sets these two bodies apart so drastically?
Purchasing either model would likely be a good decision all-in-all, they are both up to scratch with many of the features that you’d expect from a mirrorless camera that’s been released in the past couple of years. They both offer great LCD resolution, 4K photo mode, smartphone remote control, face detection, environmental sealing, face detection – features that aren’t absolutely essential but definitely come in handy when you’re using the camera.
They both boast the Micro Four Thirds sensors that have become a staple of the Panasonic mirrorless range. The G9 out-performs the G85 in terms of Megapixels, as it offers a 20 MP resolution as opposed to the G85’s 16MP, however the G85 does offer a larger pixel area.
With the G85 having a 27% larger pixel area means that each pixel has the opportunity to collect more light and therefore it will perform better in terms of noise in low-light conditions. However, more MegaPixels will mean better image quality. To decide between which you want to prioritise, it depends on what subjects you will be shooting.
The G9 has the edge on a number of core features too, such as a higher-resolution viewfinder at 3680K dot vs the G85 with 2360K dot. Personally, I think in an EVF, having a higher-quality one makes all the difference. The G9 also has a faster continuous shutter at 20fps as opposed to the G85 9fps, making it more efficient for shooting any fast-moving subjects.
On the other hand, the G85 does offer focus stacking in-camera to maximise the depth of field, which will be a handy feature for any portrait enthusiasts looking to invest in this model, as it will allow you to have more bokeh-filled background. Unlike the G9, the G85 has a built-in flash, which will be a helping hand if you’re looking to minimise the number of accessories you have with you. This is worth thinking about if you’re purchasing a camera with travel in mind, you may not want to have to carry an external flash with you.
The G9 is also the larger model, it’s larger in every direction than the G85 and heavier by 153g. Having said that, the G9 is nothing like the size and weight of a DSLR, but if you’re looking for the smallest and lightest option – the G85 might be more suited to you.
Both models have their positives and downfall, and with this decision, it really is down to what you will be shooting and how much you’re willing to pay. Either model will offer you a strong get of specifications and you will get great images with both the G85 and G9.