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8 people found this helpful
Love the camera but the LCD touch screen delaminated after 18 months careful use and Panasonic are not interested
on June 26, 2014
There's a lot to love about this camera and many people have written more technically competent reviews than I could ever hope to achieve. I love the smaller m43 format and the image quality is excellent. I have produced some great images which have been sold as large prints, so other must think so too. The GX1 is easy to use and with the LVF-2 viewfinder in bright light is a super camera.
Now, here's the rub. I have an almost OCD behavior when it comes to protecting my cameras and glass. This include the rear LCD. I have always looked after the LCD, never let if rub against anything harsher than the occasional brush against my t-shirt, never used harsh cleaner etc. Yet, after 18 months there appeared blotches on the LCD which have become progressively worse. Gentle cleaning per instructions using lens cloths made no difference as the damage is under the top LCD screen layer. A trawl of the internet reveals that this "delaminating" has occurred several times on the GX-1 as well as some other Panasonic models.
So, I contact Panasonic to discuss. Two attempts with email followed by a 16 minute wait on the phone and I am through to a chirpy chap who tries to help but basically tells me, "it's out of warranty so you'll have to pay for its repair". I explain that this appears to be a known manufacturing defect and he kindly tells me that, "no it's not, as if it was then I would have a protocol to follow". When I ask how I can take this further he says that I cannot. Apparently there is no further recourse.
So, in essence. Buyer beware.
I would easily give the camera 5 stars for the first 18 months but I have reluctantly decided to drop this to three stars because of the lack of robustness of the LCD in a camera that retailed for $800 and the poor Panasonic customer service.
My recommendation would be to perhaps see if a decent screen protector prolongs the LCD when you first get the camera, although it amazes me why manufacturers cannot include these when they sell the items in the first place (or just use gorilla glass).
*NOTE: Largely for my own edification I would be grateful if anyone else who had the same problem with the LCD would add a comment to this review so that I can gauge if this is a fairly common occurrence. Many thanks!