Updated (August 2011): Compare the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 vs Sony NEX-5N

Sony Alpha NEX-5 vs Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2

Winner
Sony Alpha NEX-5

61

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2

43

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Sony Alpha NEX-5

Almost no delay when powering up
Startup delay
1000 ms startup delay
Takes 3D photos
3D
View photos in 3D on 3D televisions
 

Reasons to buy the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2

Touch screen
Touch screen
Fewer buttons
Lens availability
Slightly more lenses available
108 lenses
Longest exposure
Long exposures
60 seconds
Built-in flash
Built-in flash
External flash not needed

Items often bought with the Sony NEX-5 or Panasonic DMC-GF2

galleries

Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2.
Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Sony Alpha NEX-5.

differences

Advantages of the Panasonic DMC-GF2

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Shutter lag
Much less shutter lag
337 ms vs 670 ms
Help
Around 50% less delay when taking photos
Touch screen
Has a touch screen
Yes vs No
Help
Fewer buttons to worry about and direct interaction with camera menus
Lens availability
More lenses available
108 lenses vs 62 lenses
Help
More than 70% more lenses available
Longest exposure
Much longer exposures
60s vs 30s
Help
2x longer exposures
Built-in flash
Built-in flash
Yes vs No
Help
A built-in flash is useful for taking indoor shots where there is little light
Thickness
Thinner
1.3" vs 1.5"
Help
More than 10% thinner
Lowest price
Slightly cheaper
$177.00 vs $359.99
Help
The best price we've seen is $183 cheaper (2x less)
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 Learn more about
the Panasonic DMC-GF2

Advantages of the Sony NEX-5

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Dynamic range
More dynamic range
12.2 EV vs 10.3 EV
Help
3.5 f-stops more dynamic range
Screen resolution
Significantly higher resolution screen
920k dots vs 460k dots
Help
2x higher resolution screen
Overall image quality
Better image quality
69.0 vs 54.0
Help
Around 30% better image quality
HDR
Has in-camera HDR
Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple exposures to capture high dynamic range
Panorama
Can create panoramas in-camera
Yes vs No
Help
Stitches together multiple photos for a wide perspective
Color depth
Better color depth
22.2 bits vs 21.2 bits
Help
Distinguishes 1 more bits of color
Screen flips out
Has a flip-out screen
Yes vs No
Help
Flip-out screens can be helpful when composing tricky shots or taking movies
Low light performance
Lower noise at high ISO
796 ISO vs 506 ISO
Help
The NEX-5 has a slight edge (0.7 f-stops) in low-noise, high-ISO performance
True resolution
Higher true resolution
14 MP vs 12 MP
Help
Capture around 20% more detail in your photos
Continuous shooting
Shoots slightly faster
7 fps vs 3.2 fps
Help
More than 2x faster continuous shooting
Battery life
Slightly longer battery life
330 shots vs 300 shots
Help
10% more shots per battery charge
Weight
Slightly lighter
287 g vs 310 g
Help
Around 10% lighter
Sony Alpha NEX-5 Learn more about
the Sony NEX-5
vs

recommendations

Which camera do we recommend? Relative to the best recent mirrorless cameras, and ignoring price

Snapsort Recommends
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 43
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      Color
        You save
        vs
        61 Sony Alpha NEX-5 Sony Alpha NEX-5
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              similarities

              Compared to recent mirrorless cameras

              Common Strengths
              3D Both can take 3D photos, many cameras like these don't Help
              View photos in 3D on 3D televisions
              Size Fairly small Help
              DMC-GF2113×68×33 mm
              NEX-5111×59×38 mm
              Sensor cleaning Self cleaning sensors Help
              Avoids dust in your photos
              External flash Each supports an external flash Help
              Better lighting
              Lowest price Inexpensive Help
              DMC-GF2$177.00
              NEX-5$359.99
              Thickness Thin Help
              DMC-GF21.3"
              NEX-51.5"
              Common Weaknesses
              Fastest shutter speed Slow max shutter speed Help
              1/4000 of a second
              Light sensitivity (boost) No boost ISO Help
              Lacks boost light sensitivity
              Supports 24p No support for 24p Help
              Missing that film look
              Cross type focus points Few cross-type focus points Help
              0
              External mic jack Neither has an external mic jack Help
              Limited to the in-camera mic
              Focus points Few focus points Help
              DMC-GF223
              NEX-525
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              DMC-GF212 MP
              NEX-514 MP
              Viewfinder No viewfinders Help
              Can only preview photos on the screen
              Shutter lag Significant shutter lag Help
              DMC-GF2337 ms
              NEX-5670 ms
              Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
              Need to shelter it from weather
              Autofocus Slower contrast detection autofocus Help
              slower focusing
              Image stabilization No image stabilization Help
              Risk of blur

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Sony Alpha A6000

              Sony Alpha A6000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $548 body only

              $698 with 16-50mm lens

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Thickness Is thicker
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Sony NEX-F3

              Sony NEX-F3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $444 with 18-55mm lens

              Supports 24p Records movies in 24p
              Battery life Has a slightly longer battery life
              Thickness Is thicker
              Startup delay Has slightly more startup delay
              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3

              Olympus PEN E-PL3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $591 body only

              $229 with 14-42mm lens

              Image stabilization Has image stabilization
              Shutter lag Has slightly less shutter lag
              Startup delay Has significantly more startup delay

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $109 body only

              $290 with 14-42mm lens

              Shutter lag Slightly less shutter lag
              Battery life Slightly longer battery life
              Startup delay Significantly more startup delay
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $545 body only

              $368 with 14-42mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Image stabilization Image stabilization
              Size Significantly larger
              Thickness Much thicker
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF5

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $328 body only

              $381 with 14-42mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Shutter lag Significantly less shutter lag
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Overall image quality Worse image quality
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $350 body only

              $494 with 14-42mm lens

              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Shutter lag Less shutter lag
              Sensor type Has a CCD-family sensor
              Startup delay More startup delay
              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $199 body only

              $270 with 14-42mm lens

              Image stabilization Image stabilization
              Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera
              Touch screen No touch screen
              Startup delay Significantly more startup delay

              Sony Alpha NEX-5 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Sony NEX-5N

              Sony NEX-5N

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $605 body only

              $803 with 16-50mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              Startup delay Significantly more startup delay
              Sony Alpha A5000

              Sony Alpha A5000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $280 body only

              $440 - $448 with 16-50mm lens

              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Screen resolution Significantly lower resolution screen
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $400 body only

              $350 with 16mm lens

              External mic jack Has an external mic jack
              Thickness Thinner
              Movie format Lower resolution movies
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range
              Sony NEX-7

              Sony NEX-7

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $760 body only

              $660 with 18-55mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              Startup delay More startup delay
              Weight Heavier
              Sony Alpha NEX-6

              Sony Alpha NEX-6

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $549 body only

              $849 with 16-50mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Startup delay Significantly more startup delay

              appearance

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 Sony Alpha NEX-5
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 Sony Alpha NEX-5
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 Sony Alpha NEX-5

              discussion

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2
              Lumix DMC-GF2
              Panasonic

              Report a correction
              Sony Alpha NEX-5
              Alpha NEX-5
              Sony

              Report a correction

              Showing 1 comments

              Howtoshootpictures (8:18 AM, June 28, 2012)
              I really like the way camera features are sorted here it made my purchase much easier. I was actually looking to buy a Sony NEX 7 but the price is too steep. I think settlingon NEX 5 will do for my needs.