Capturing precious moments as the children grow up is, without a doubt, one of the most important things for my wife and me.
We each have 20,000+ photos on our phones, so between us, we have 40,000 images of the children as they grow up. And they’re growing up too fast!
Having a smartphone means that the ‘quantity’ element of photography is taken care of; we can whip it out at any given moment and snap away – it’s always in our pocket so missing a moment is less likely.
However, whilst the quality of smartphones is improving, the ‘quality’ side to our photography is definitely lacking. Not to say we take bad pictures, but they could be better if we had a purpose built tool for the job.
For the last few months I’ve had the joy of using the Panasonic LUMIX GX80.
And, I believe, that this is the best camera for families.
Here’s a list of the reasons why I love this camera and why I think every dad and every family should have one:
The LUMIX GX80 body is small and compact. With an excellent kit lens that comes with it, it really is a small sized camera that you can put in your change bag, over your shoulder or in the bottom of the pushchair. I simply sling it over my shoulder and comfortably wear it throughout the day. It’s completely unobtrusive. It is a mirrorless camera that is smaller than a dslr, it has an electronic viewfinder (class leader), excellent autofocus performance (also class leader) and it delivers the same quality as a dslr. You won’t find a better camera, of this small size, to have on you, all the time.
The silent shutter
Kids get distracted by the smallest things. Even a small ‘click.’ We’ve been taken photo’s of Ted since the moment he arrived in the world, and he has now learnt the sound of the shutter. That means that when I want to capture a natural moment, he knows I’m doing it, which then makes it either not as natural, or he plays up shouts ‘no’ at me and the moment is ruined. With this silent shutter feature, he doesn’t know I’m snapping away and he can carry on with his business and I can capture great photos and memories.
I don’t pretend to be an expert when cameras are concerned. I want one that works, with good results and one that’s easy to use. This hits all 3. With just 1 or 2 clicks all the various functions I need are to hand. It’s a ‘pick up and shoot’ camera for the amateur with the ability to be a deeply advanced camera for the seasoned pro.
But here’s the main reason why I believe that this is the best camera for families.
This function enables anyone behind the camera, regardless of skill and experience, to get a fabulous photo.
In short, by switching into 4K photo mode, when you hold down the shutter it begins to record what you’re pointing at. When you then release the shutter, it stops and let’s you move through what you have just shot frame by frame (all in 4K). That means you can select the moment when everyone is smiling or when the water is splashing or the moment your child wins the race, post production.
After you have taken the photo sequence, you can look through all of the frames and once you have chosen the best frame, you can save it as a photo. It means that if you only have one chance at getting the photo you want, you are guaranteed not to miss it.
Simply put, it means that your shutter timing isn’t as crucial as it once was.
Check out these snaps of Ted running & jumping:
This is the photo frame I chose as the ‘best frame,’ but I had a selection of 10 before and 10 afterwards to choose from. I pressed the shutter when he started to run and ended when he got to me, meaning I could choose the best frame with him hurtling through the air. Not that I explained this to the wife; she thinks I’m a damn good photographer with perfect timing!
And here are the before and after frames:
With this feature, you’re almost guaranteed to be able to capture amazing memories through your photos. This function can really take your precious moments & cherished memories and capture them to re-live forever.
Other great features:
- Post Focus
- USB charging
- Easy switching between view finder & LCD display
- Autofocus point by tapping an area on the screen
- Excellent in body stabilisation
- Speedy autofocus
- Compatible with high end Leica lenses, as well as a good range of LUMIX lenses.
- Wireless functions allowing you to upload to social media and connect to the Panasonic APP via your phone – you can take a photo remotely using your phone!
There you have it, in my opinion, the best camera for families on the market.