The New Panasonic GX8


NA-GX8 and Panasonic Lumix GX8
Until the release of Panasonic’s stunning 4k video powerhouse, the GH4, a lot of American photographers rarely gave Panasonic cameras a second thought. Their video and still cameras have long garnered great reviews and popularity elsewhere in the world, but perhaps it is time for that recognition to arrive in the US. Those that make the jump to the GX8 will be happy they were ahead of the curve.

 


What makes it so good?

1.     First the obvious: People love the Micro 4/3 sensor format mainly for the great selection of high quality Panasonic and Olympus lenses that are popular for underwater – in excess of a dozen right now – and still growing.

2.     The GX8 introduces the most advanced, highest resolution M4/3 sensor ever with 25% more resolution than any other Olympus or Panasonic camera.

3.     4K Video – How many other interchangeable lens mirrorless cameras can record 4K video internally? Only the GX8’s big brother the GH4 and the newest Sony A7 Cameras (about $3000).

4.     Great still shooting specs – 8fps and up to 1/16,000 shutter speed for when the action is crazy. Add to this what Panasonic calls 4K Photo – the ability to shoot 30 fps 4K 8mp high resolution photos in what is essentially a video clip. What a cool camera for dolphins and sailfish!

5.     The GX8 is the only camera that can utilize in-camera 5 Axis image stabilization AND a M4/3 lens with additional in-lens stabilization. Yes, that means both systems work in concert – intelligently. Pretty amazing.

6.     The compact but rugged magnesium camera body really feels right in the hand unlike some of the ultra-small mirrorless camera bodies. The body is also weather-sealed enough to be called “splashproof” – kind of reassuring considering how we use these cameras, right?

7.     Simply the best autofocus of any M4/3 camera body. A real asset when M4/3 cameras paired with top notch macro lenses make for the greatest macro reproduction ratio of any camera sensor format.

8.     An intelligent, easy and logical menu format. Ever gone searching for what seems like an obvious feature in a camera menu and end up feeling like you're trapped in Daedelaus’ Labyrinth? If that sounds familiar, Panasonic logic will be a welcome relief.


Getting the GX8 Underwater:


Powerful and Compact, the Nauticam NA-GX8 Housing
None of this matters to us unless there is a great underwater housing system to support the GX8 and fortunately Nauticam doesn’t disappoint. The NA-GX8 is a marvel of ergonomic design and technological prowess. But the icing on the cake could well be Nauticam’s new Wide Wet Lens 1 (WWL-1) – a groundbreaking and unique wide angle wet lens.

The NA-GX8 System with Nauticam WWL-1 and CMC-1, Amazing Versatility in One Dive
Many underwater photographers have longed for the quality and performance of today’s cutting edge mirrorless cameras, but also want compact-camera-like flexibility to shoot macro, fish portraits and true wide angle on a single dive. Well, Nauticam may have just developed your solution.

The Nauticam WWL-1 Mounted on the NA-GX8
The WWL-1 has been designed from scratch to be used in water, rendering amazingly wide and beautifully detailed images in conjunction with many compact and mirrorless cameras. The light and versatile Olympus M.Zuiko ED M.14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 EZ III power zoom and the Panasonic LUMIX® G X Vario PZ 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 Power O.I.S. work perfectly with the GX8 and the WWL-1.

The Nauticam CMC-1 Mounted on the NA-GX8
Add the Nauticam Compact Macro Convertor (CMC-1) and you are diving with the most extensive range of imaging options that can realistically be accomplished underwater on one dive.

 


Unparalleled Versatility:

Just imagine taking a picture of...
  • A 1” nudibranch – easy with the 42mm focal length and the CMC-1.
With the Nauticam CMC-1
  • A portrait of a bannerfish – zoom to about 35mm with no wet lens.

14-42mm Power Zoom at
Approximately 35mm

  • A close-focus wide-angle of soft corals and schooling fish – mount the WWL-1, get close and zoom the lens in until you like the framing. That’s right, you can zoom through this wet lens with fantastic results!

   With the Nauticam WWL-1

  • 200 schooling barracuda on the safety stop? No problem–zoom to 14mm with the WWL-1 and you're ready.

 

   With the Nauticam WWL-1

…all on one dive!

This might sound too good to be true, but that is only because it has never been done before. Now it has, and the results are remarkable. And yes, it is shipping now.