We face the Lumix S1R vs. Lumix S1: what Panasonic should you choose?

We face the Lumix S1R vs. Lumix S1: what Panasonic should you choose?

After years of focusing on the Micro Four Thirds format, Panasonic's entry into the full Frame market has been a surprise. Its first two full-frame cameras, the Lumix S1R and Lumix S1, are professional machines ready to assume the best that Sony, Nikon and Canon have to offer. Therefore, we face the Lumix S1R vs. Lumix S1 to tell you the best of each and help you finally decide.

Panasonic Lumix S1R vs S1 Review 5 720x720

S1 and S1R are more similar than you think, with practically identical specifications except for a couple of key differences. While both can record 4K videos at 60 frames per second, the 47-megapixel S1R is decidedly more focused on pure and hard photography, while the 24-megapixel S1 is a hybrid video camera and photos. Where there is a big difference is in the price: $ 3,700 dollars for the S1R, $ 2,500 dollars for the S1. But despite this cost difference, the S1R is not necessarily the best camera. It all depends on what you need. We then face its characteristics so that you decide which camera is best for you.

Panasonic Lumix S1R

Panasonic Lumix S1

Sensor 47.3 megapixel full frame sensor 24 megapixel full frame sensor
Burst Rate Up to 9 fps (6 with AF-C) Up to 9 fps (6 with AF-C)
Shutter speed 1 / 8,000 to 60 sec. 1 / 8,000 to 60 sec.
ISO 100-25,600 (50-51,200 expanded) 100-51,200 (50-204,800 expanded)
Autofocus 225-point contrast detection AF AF 225-point contrast detection AF AF
Image stabilization 5-axis sensor shift stabilization 5-axis sensor shift stabilization
Video 4K / 30p and 60p video with 1.09x clipping, 8 bits 4K / 30p, 4K / 60p with 1.5x clipping, HLG (V-Log through firmware update)
Viewfinder 0.78x magnification, 5.7m-OLED point 0.78x magnification, 5.7m-OLED point
LCD 3.2-inch and 2.1 m tilting touch screen 3.2-inch and 2.1 m tilting touch screen
Connectivity Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Battery Li-ion rated at 360 shots Li-ion rated at 380 shots
Dimensions 5.87 x 4.33 x 3.82 inches 5.87 x 4.33 x 3.82 inches
Weight 35.8 ounces 35.8 ounces
Glasses Body available alone or with 24-105mm f / 4 Body available alone or with 24-105mm f / 4
Price $ 3,700 body only $ 2,500 body only
Buy now B&H Photo Amazon


If you need the resolution, the Lumix S1R offers more than enough: its 47-megapixel sensor is the full-resolution full-frame sensor in any mirrorless camera, but it doesn't stop there. In high resolution mode, which composes eight images in one, it reaches the ridiculous 187 megapixels. The resulting 300 megabyte RAW file acquires a size to consider.

But that great resolution is excessive for the vast majority of photographers, and the more modest 24MP sensor of the Lumix S1 handle most jobs with ease. It also has the best performance in low light conditions, with a higher maximum ISO on paper and less noise in practice according to our tests. And if you need a lot of resolution, the S1 also has a high resolution mode reaching 96MP, not as much as its sister's 187, but more than enough for most.


Normally, a higher resolution camera will be slower than a lower resolution camera, but Panasonic chose to give both S-series models the same continuous shooting speeds: 6 frames per second with continuous autofocus, 9 fps with the focus locked. Where they differ is with the depth of the buffer: since both cameras use the same image buffer, but the 24MP files of the S1 take up less space than the 47MP files of the S1R, the S1 can shoot continuously to obtain 75 RAW images while the S1R slows down after only 32.

Both cameras also benefit from fast XQD cards, with future support for faster CFExpress cards. This allows cameras to erase their buffers considerably faster than competitive models that only use SD cards, for example.


Apart from the sensor, this section is where the two cameras differ more clearly. Those who take video recording seriously will like the LumixS1 more, which can record 4K / 30p from the full sensor width or 4K / 60p from an APS-C sized portion. This model also takes advantage of excess sampling for better image quality. Currently, S1 is limited to 8 bits 4: 2: 0, or 10 bits 4: 2: 0 in HLG mode. However, an upcoming firmware version will incorporate 4: 2: 2 10-bit recording and V-Log to the S1.

The S1R records 4K / 30p and 4K / 60p video from a slightly trimmed area of ​​the sensor (with a clipping factor of 1.09x), but relies on the pixel combination to scale its 47MP at a resolution of 4K, resulting in a less sharp image. This model lacks HLG and does not receive the firmware update V-Log.


Both the S1R and S1 have the same 225-zone autofocus system that the Depth from Defocus (DFD) detection system uses instead of the more standard phase detection employed by other mirrorless cameras. In practice, the DFD works very well most of the time, but it is less reliable for continuous autofocus and can cause the video to breathe, as it has to make small adjustments constantly back and forth. If you greatly expect continuous performance of autofocus, for example, for sports recording, you may feel more comfortable with a Sony or a Nikon.


Panasonic Lumix S1R vs S1 Review 8 720x720

Both cameras are aesthetically virtually identical, sharing the same physical design, construction quality and control design. Both share an electronic viewfinder of 5.7 million points, which is the best we have seen. Both also have slots for SD and XQD cards and 3-inch tilting LCD screens; In general, this is the most professional mirrorless design we have tried, but it is also very large and heavy: almost 1 kg of weight with the battery and the memory cards loaded. The high resolution EVF also consumes a lot of energy, so the S1 has a battery capacity ratio of 380 exposures and the S1R a little less at 360 (an energy saving mode can extend it to more than 1,000).

While both cameras are the same in terms of design, we must highlight the lower price of the S1: it costs $ 1,200 dollars less than the S1R, but it comes with zero sacrifices in handling or operation.