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Panasonic LUMIX S5II and S5IIX Announced – New 24MP CMOS Sensor, 6K30p, Hybrid Phase Detection AF and More

January 4th, 2023 Jump to Comment Section 11
Panasonic LUMIX S5II and S5IIX Announced – New 24MP CMOS Sensor, 6K30p, Hybrid Phase Detection AF and More

Today Panasonic announces two new full-frame mirrorless cameras, the LUMIX S5II and S5IIX. Built on the legacy of the original S5, these new models offer internal 6K30p and C4K60p recording, a hybrid AF system with phase detection, Dual Native ISO, enhanced Active I.S., V-Log gamma curve, and improved connectivity. Pricing starts at $1,999. Our LUMIX S5II review can be found here.

Back in June, Panasonic and Leica signed a strategic business agreement to jointly develop new imaging technologies. Apparently, the first major results of the so-called L² Technology alliance are here.

Indeed, today Panasonic announces two new mirrorless cameras in their full-frame LUMIX S series and the first models to feature a hybrid phase detection AF system. So please welcome the Panasonic LUMIX S5II and LUMIX S5IIX. Let’s take a look!

Panasonic LUMIX S5II body
Panasonic LUMIX S5II body. Source: Panasonic

Panasonic LUMIX S5II and S5IIX: common features

At the core of the new LUMIX S5II and S5IIX is a freshly-developed 24.2MP 35mm CMOS Dual Native ISO sensor (640/4000 native ISO values in V-Log) with 5-axis stabilization and enhanced Active I.S. The sensor is paired with a new imaging engine born out of the ongoing collaboration with Leica. Of course, you can pair both camera bodies with a wide variety of L-mount alliance glass, including the company’s new LUMIX S 14-28mm F4-5.6 MACRO lens.

Panasonic LUMIX S5II with the new LUMIX S 14-28mm F4-5.6 MACRO lens
Panasonic LUMIX S5II with the new LUMIX S 14-28mm F4-5.6 MACRO lens. Source: Panasonic

On the photo side, the cameras can shoot bursts of up to 9fps using the mechanical shutter or 30fps using the electronic one, with a maximum buffer size of 300 images. Moreover, they are equipped with a High-Resolution Mode that can produce 96MP RAW or JPEG files.

Panasonic LUMIX S5IIX with LUMIX S 20-60mm F3.5-5.6 lens
Panasonic LUMIX S5IIX with LUMIX S 20-60mm F3.5-5.6 lens. Source: Panasonic

Coming to video mode, here’s where things get interesting. Indeed, it looks like the S5II and S5IIX were developed to fill the gap between the original model (our Lab test and Review) and the fully-featured, video-centric S1H (Lab test / Review).

Particularly, the S5II and S5IIX can now record internal 10-bit 4:2:0 LongGOP video in 6K (3:2) or 5.9K (16:9) at up to 30fps. Moreover, 10-bit 4:2:2 4K DCI and UHD recording is now supported at up to 60fps. Unfortunately, Slow&Quick mode is limited to 180fps in FullHD, so there’s no 4K120p option. Furthermore, Panasonic claims that recording time limits have been lifted thanks to an improved heat dissipation system.

Bottom view of the new Panasonic LUMIX S5II body
Bottom view of the new Panasonic LUMIX S5II body. Source: Panasonic

Users can rely on the V-log gamma curve to maximize dynamic range, and a set of tools is available for monitoring purposes, including Waveform Monitor, Zebra and the newly-added Vector Scope. Moreover, a new REAL TIME LUT function allows users to bake-in custom LUTs into the footage directly in the camera.

First LUMIX cameras with phase detection AF

The biggest news, however, is that, for the very first time on a LUMIX camera, Panasonic implemented a hybrid autofocus system, thus combining contrast-based AF with phase detection. The system features 779 focusing points and, according to Panasonic, can detect and track subjects even in the most challenging shooting conditions.

It will be interesting to put these cameras through their paces in real-world scenarios to see if they can keep up with the likes of Sony and Canon AF technologies. Also, I’m curious to see if this hybrid AF system will make its way to the next generation of GH series cameras.

Panasonic LUMIX S5IIX: extra features

Over the standard S5II, the “X” model offers a few extra benefits, starting from internal ALL-Intra recording in 5.8K and ProRes 422 HQ recording in FullHD. Moreover, it allows recording of 5.8K ProRes video onto external SSDs via either HDMI or USB-C.

The "X" model features a sleek matte black finish
The “X” model features a sleek matte black finish. Source: Panasonic

Additionally, a future firmware update will enable external ProRes RAW recording with selected Atomos devices. Lastly, the LUMIX S5IIX supports IP streaming via Wi-fi, USB, or wired LAN as well as USB tethering.

Enhanced connectivity and operability

The S5II and S5IIX bodies feature a magnesium alloy and their construction is claimed to be dust- and splash-resistant. Taking a look at the left side of the camera, the Micro HDMI port has now been replaced by a more reliable “full-size” one, which sits next to a USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 connector that also serves as a charging port for the 2200 mAh battery. To top off the connectivity features, the cameras integrate Wi-Fi 2.4 GHz/5GHz as well as Bluetooth 5.0.

Panasonic LUMIX S5IIX's I/O ports
Panasonic LUMIX S5IIX’s I/O ports. Source: Panasonic

When it comes to audio monitoring and external audio recording, the left side of the body offers a 3,5mm jack microphone input and headphone output. On the right side of the S5II and S5IIX, we can still find a dual SD card slot. However, this has been improved and both media slots now support the UHS-II standard. The secondary slot can be used for relay, backup, or allocation recording.

Panasonic LUMIX S5II's dual card slot
Panasonic LUMIX S5II’s dual card slot. Source: Panasonic

Finally, the back of the camera body features a 3-inch multi-angle touchscreen display as well as a higher-resolution 3,680K-dot OLED 120fps viewfinder.

Panasonic LUMIX S5II's LCD and EVF
Panasonic LUMIX S5II’s LCD and EVF. Source: Panasonic

Price and availability

Overall, both cameras seem to be great all-rounders for hybrid photo and video shooters, especially considering their price points. The Panasonic LUMIX S5II and LUMIX S5IIX are now available to pre-order from B&H/CVP.

The S5II should soon hit the shelves (winter 2023). It will inherit the well-known design of the S5 and retail for €2,199/$1,999. On the other hand, the “X” model will come a little later (Spring 2023). It will feature a sleek matte black finish and have a higher official retail price of €2,499/$2,199.

For more information, please visit Panasonic’s website here.

What do you think of the new Panasonic LUMIX S5II and S5IIX? Do you think it’s worth upgrading from the S5? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!

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