I’m sure that it will come as no surprise that I’ve been wasting lots of time with my new Panasonic G9. I’ve spent hours pixel peeping to examine the performance of the camera and have even been comparing it side by side with my Fuji XT3. I won’t say too much about this yet as I want to compile a larger article in the future. It’s certainly proved fascinating up to this point.
But let’s put this to one side because I want to share something that has taken me completely by surprise. The Panasonic G9 high-resolution mode.
If you’re not familiar, the high-resolution mode is where the camera shoots multiple images, shifting the sensor between each frame. It then processes these into a single JPEG and/or RAW file depending on your settings.
The camera has two high resolution modes to choose from:
- 40 Mpixel (7,296 x 5,472 pixels)
- 80.5 Mpixel (10,368 x 7,776 pixels)
When I decided to get the G9, this feature wasn’t even in my mind, although it clearly competes with the resolution figures for many full-frame cameras. The reason I ignored it is that you need a perfectly still scene. If there’s any movement, it can create a strange ghosting effect as the camera tries to merge the multiple images. This makes it an ideal feature for studio photography but useless for landscape photography.
Or does it.
Whilst I was experimenting with this feature, I noticed something interesting. If you slightly elongate the shutter speed so that moving objects blur a little, the moving objects become smoothed in the high-resolution image. From everything I had read and the examples I’d seen on the internet, this was a complete surprise.
My other surprise was how detailed these high-resolution images are. Here’s an example.
And here’s a small section from the centre of the frame. Notice how the movement in the ferns looks completely natural.
It’s early days but this could be a bit of a game changer for me. Whilst I can’t handhold these shots, I don’t mind shooting from a tripod because that’s what I would do with a larger camera anyway. It also makes carrying a Neutral Density filter more important.
Now back to the image at the start of the post. This is another image captured using the Panasonic G9. I shot it handheld in the Peak District whilst out walking. The exposure was 1/250” at f/8.0 and ISO200. The lens is the Leica 12-60 that came with the G9, set to 18mm.
The reason that I wanted to share this image is that I’ve used it in my latest YouTube video. In it, I share how and why I use DxO PhotoLab for my Micro 43 RAW file processing. I hope this will be of interest to a least a few readers. PhotoLab works great with many cameras (they don’t support Fuji XTrans) but I’ve found it particularly good for Micro 43. If you haven’t tried it, I’d recommend downloading the trial version (affiliate link) and following my video with your own RAW files.
I’m going to leave it there for now, but I will have more to share in the future about extracting the best performance from RAW files.
I hope you have a great weekend.