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The Camera quality ranking from Stiftung Warentest (Germany). In Stock at Amazon on Sunday.


That is the ranking of the sever testers form the German “Stiftung Warentest“. As you see the Panasonic Gh3 ranked as current best DSLR+Mirrorless System Camera. Also the compact cameras from Panasonic and Olympus are on top of the list. Quite an astonishing result! That said there is no such thing as a perfect ranking and testing. It all depends from what you need :)

P.S.: In Germany a lower score = better quality.

And finally we have some clue when the GH3 will ship at Amazon US (Click here). On Sunday March 31!

  • German User

    It´s called Stiftung Warentest, not Stuftung Warentest ;-)

    For not-Germans: Stiftung Warentest ist “THE” independent magazine for product tests. What they write is regarded as fact here.

    • But according to them the Canon 6D and the Canon 650D have the same quality. And they both also have the same quality as the Olympus E-M5 and the Panasonic G5.

      So whatever it is they test, those results are quite bizarre, to say the least.

      • Frank

        the score is not for image quality….not image quality alone.
        this is not a sensor test guys.

        build quality, ergonomics, ease of use, price, features, warranty and a dozen more things play a role.

    • Mathias

      Sorry, I totally disagree. Being a German myself, I’ve not much respect for Stiftung Warentest.

      • Anonymous

        > Sorry, I totally disagree. Being a German myself, I’ve not much respect for Stiftung Warentest.

        true, how you can agree w/ anything that ranks EM5 below #1 ?

      • I agree. While they are generally not wrongwith their results… they are NO experts in ANY area.
        So while they giveyou some sort of general overview… there’s not more than that to them.

        For cameras and stuff you should still consult for example dpreview. And likewise for other areas.

        • The whole point of modern cameras is so a non expert can use them. How they use them is the complicated bit.
          So a team of non experts assessing cameras is fine that’s what happens when ‘Joe’ goes to buy his nice new camera.
          Anyway ‘Joe’ usually ends up with the ‘camera of the day’ whatever that may be but usually the canicon that has the biggest margin today.

        • bousozoku

          They sound like Consumer Reports in the U.S.A. They test anything and everything.

          I would trust their evaluations of toasters and blenders more than their evaluations of electronics and cars.

          • JimD

            Why? Some find cameras easy some do not. Some know what speed or time to use on a blender. Do you?
            Cameras are for everyday people, what’s wrong with everyday people marking them. We do not need experts and triple PHD degrees to mark a consumer camera. Do we?

      • john

        The only difference of Stiftung Warentest and any other testing institution is that Stiftung Warentest rarely rates ‘very good’ (under 1.5). By rarely rating ‘very good’ they create an illusion of fairness.

        Readers outside of Germany won’t know but Stiftung Warentest conduct test in batches. Therefore, the winner within a batch will simply write on their products ‘#1 in SW’, even though there may even have been no product better than 2.0.
        Personally I won’t be surprised at all if that #1 position (which will more often than not be just a 0.1 difference from #2) is bought by various companies on a regular basis.

        It’s true that they once were very respectable though.

    • Andrés

      Crapy Otto lie!!! Everybody knows that the Pentax K-5(II&s) are the Thoughtest top quality APS-C DSLR ever made. Followed by K-30, 650D and the first Q. The 3 firsts weather resistant.

    • rrr_hhh

      May be they are good testing general home facilities including toothpaste and cornflakes but they are apparently no experts in matters of photography; further, almost everything get the same score near of 2, how would that help anyone in need of choosing

    • beautemps

      Crazy comments here….

      Stiftung Warentest is a consumer testing sight. It is funny how readers here, with half knowledge of cameras, try to discriminate these tests, cause they don’t like/understand the results. Same people that, in the role of a father/mother, always only buy childseats for cars with ‘best tested’ lable of “Stiftung Warentest”. Entroust live of their child to results of stiftung warentest without any doubt.
      Isn’t testing a childseat even more complex then testing a camera?
      It is.

      That is why stiftung warentest lets external experts design and execute the tests. There are not the same experts testing a tooth brush and a camera!

      The tests are oriented to the average consumer needs for modern cameras. for example, a modern camera has to be
      – hybrid, same quality level in video and foto
      – Fast AF for viewfinder AND LCD
      – Usability, light weight, …
      – good image quality and highISO feature
      – …
      The judgement is over all criteria! Not surprising, that GH3 is on top… And for info of the consumers and their own criteria there is a table with all features and measurements.

      • john

        You obviously have never bothered to read their articles. Firstly, the quality of their reports isn’t really high despite the fact that they get a lot of financial support from various sources. It’s not rare for the articles to simply contain wrong information about the product and I don’t see why I should trust anyone who isn’t even able to copy paste a data sheet from the manufacturer.
        Secondly, they got a lot of misleading/imprecise wording. Just take this current test. For the EOS 6D it says something like “the 6D is a FF SLR. It’s got great IQ, even in low light which is rare.”. Well, we know that good low light performance is something that you can expect of any camera in its class (FF SLRs) but this wording makes it sound like the 6D is special. Which is isn’t.
        I won’t say that they are necessarily corrupt but as I said I wouldn’t be surprised. But that’s not even the point because it’s simply the quality of their tests that is lacking. There is a good reason why SW has lost a lot of its trust over the years.

  • fuSi0n

    Stiftung Warentest has no clue of what they are testing. They have an extremly biased view and lost much of their credibility the last years.

  • Anonymous

    > Stiftung Warentest has no clue of what they are testing. They have an extremly biased view and lost much of their credibility the last years.

    EM5 owners are not happy…

  • Frank

    stiftung warentest war mal gut in den 80er.

    well they where good in the 80s but they are not experts for everything.
    they should have stuck with testing coofee machines and TV´s.

    and the score is NOT for image quality.

  • Marco

    Some results for image quality:
    GH3 = GUT (1,8)
    650D = GUT (1,8)
    6D = SEHR GUT (1,5)
    E-M5 = GUT (2,0)
    G5 = GUT (1,9)
    NX20 = GUT (1,7)
    A75 = GUT (2,2)
    D3200 = GUT (1,7)
    X-E1 = GUT (2,2)

    • Uh, Frank

      Care to chime in on those image quality scores??

      • Frank

        well as you can see the scores for image quality are different to the overall scores posted in the article.

        paints a whole other images.. no phun..

        6D is the best of the bunch.. no suprise.

  • Sunny

    One more thing: Stiftung Warentest is not really making any ranking. They are just listing the overall test results. Best rated products are listed first, equal rated products are listed in alphabetical order.

    And I think Stiftung Warentest is as credible or uncredible for camera tests as testers like the magazines “Chip” or “Computer Bild”. It´s not their core competency and they´re testing products from a consumers point of view. Not from a photographers point of view.

  • mahler

    So they probably forgot to look through the view finder of the GH3. With such a bad finder, a camera should not rank first.

  • Photowang

    What I really want to know is if these cameras will blend.

  • Roberto

    Fusion is absolutely right, they lost MUCH credibility over the last 10 years. Certain companies like Sony or Samsung for instance get a much lower than average good result, insiders claim they don´t give enough free copies to SW…
    Anyhow, I am saying this as more of a Pana fanboy and owner of a GH3 AND an Olympus OM-D. Go figure.

    Regarding their credits, check out the prices… All the others are body-only prices, and the GH3 appears with the 12-35 bundle price. Shows a bit of research and report quality, doesn´t it?

    • 0mega

      SW doesn’t get free copies. They buy stuff anonymously in stores.

  • Great test. Every contender got “good” as result.

  • Anonymous

    I can’t believe the G5 and the OMD got the same score, the G5 should have just smoked it.

  • Joto

    This is not really a ranking and completly useless. stiftung warentest is a sort of large consumer good basic review and test company. They also test friges and babyphones. They don tknow anything about camera. You should get more info pefore publishing such news on43rumors. This is impacting your own credibility.

  • Mr.Fancy

    GH3 with 12-35
    OM-D with 12-50

    Is this fair?

    • No it’s not. I’m sure the Oly got bonus points for the extended focal length and macro capability. Remember, this is not an IQ review. It is a usability, feature and function review. The EM5 is like a Miata, it’s cute and handles OK but it’s not as feature rich or high performance as others. I think you should be asking why Oly chose to put a mid level kit lens on their high end camera.

      • ISO 1638400

        I’m not a huge fan of the 12-50 by any means, but I can see why Olympus chose it as the OM-D’s introductory kit-lens. They obviously went with a cheaper, more consumerish design to keep the kit price down and to make it versatile enough within its design constraints to attract new users to m4/3. An O-MD E-M5 At $1100 with the 12-50 kit-lens has wide appeal and is generally affordable. I see the OM-D for sale not only at camera stores but at department stores, consumer electrical stores, electronics and computer stores, as well as postal outlets. Whether one likes or dislikes the OM-D for whatever reason, it is a camera that has wide market appeal (in relative terms in the scope of mirrorless ILC), or else these mainstream retailers would not bother stocking them.

        The GH3 body price is $1300. Adding the 12-35 puts the package price up to $2400+ (at current authorised retailers’ prices). Leaving camera preferences aside, Panasonic’s pricing rules out the GH3 for many people, so its market is restricted already based on price. Its market is affected by other factors, that I won’t go into here, as they have been argued over ad nauseum here and elsewhere.

        m4/3 has quality products from both brands to suit a variety of users and uses within its system. There’s no need to routinely disparage a camera or its brand because it doesn’t suit you or because it’s from “the other camp”. It’s unfortunate, too, that there has to be these camps and civil warfare in the m4/3 system. It’s amusing to a degree, but after a while, when it becomes persistent, is actually quite disturbing. It is especially unhelpful to new and prospective users. I say this as a general observation, not in reference to you or your post specifically.

    • lorenzino

      In fact it’s stupid

    • bousozoku

      After seeing the 12-35mm review on Lens Tip, I’d say that the 12-50mm might have the advantage there, so no it’s not a fair comparison.

      • BOBAK

        Having used both the 12-35 & the 12-50…..your comment is utter nonsense. Resolution-wise….the Panasonic is clearly better, no contest.

      • true homer

        what was it that you saw? the 12-35 severely beat the 12-50 on lenstip

  • mark h.

    they used different lenses, so it is a lense test,
    the 12-35 is the most superior lense for mft, the 12-50 is,just soso…

    But if I remember right they gave a Nikon d3200 a better image quality than a D600… any questions?
    No, not for me.

  • Anonymous

    Stupid test : they rank the 650D better than the 6D !
    You would think that the price/ value performance get a high weight given they are mainly a consumer organization… But then hw comes the GH3 get such a good ranking ?

    Stupid test by an organization testing mainly home tools like wash machine, dish washers etc. or shampoos and toothpaste

  • Jimbob

    There’s one thing a lot of people here don’t get here. What you see up there is not a comparison test, it’s a collection of test gathered test results. Also, Stiftung Warentest does not have camera geeks like us as a target audience, but the average consumer that is rarely interested in viewfinder quality or what a camera could do if you attached another lens than the kit to it, and most of all is not informed about or interested in all the tiny little details. There are a lot of people out there who simply want to invest some money in a camera. And that’s not the kind of people that browse the web for days and days to see what 43rumours, cheesycam or DxO have to say about it. They’re interested in cameras for family and holiday snapshots, and if they have too much money on their hands, it might as well be a 6D with kit lens, as long as it’s worth it’s money from their point of view. In that kind of consumer market, Stiftung Warentest does have a good position as a source for quality/bang for the buck ratings.
    From a consumer point of view, what is wrong with a bunch of very different cameras getting an overall “gut” (good) rating? It’s like complaining that there are too many “silver awards” on dpreview.
    And BTW, yes, Stiftung Warentest do also test fridges and coffee makers, but it’s usually not done by the same test team that does cameras, so what happens here is that a bunch of people who know their way around the camera market try to boil down their results to a level that is informative to non-specialist readers. Real photographers read different magazines and test results, that’s not what Stiftung Warentest is for. These test results weren’t meant for you, but for your parents, grandparents or mates.

    • JimD

      Agree. See my comments above.

  • Uncle_Pix

    Stiftung Warentest is a government-sponsored organization. Their mission is to give objective, non-hyped informations to consumers. It was founded as a counterweight to sugarcoating/lying commercials and to curb unneccesary consum. But today they are an (unwanted) part of / they are clamped by the commercial industry. Print a “good” or “very good” badge of Stiftung Warentest on the packaging and you’re product will be bought anyhow by many people.

    When a camera is “good”, a camera is “good”. That’s the simply truth and statement. They don’t look at pixels, they see the big picture. Nothing to hype. But you can learn nearly nothing about the specific features and strengths of products/cameras.

    • JimD

      Uncle_pix, that is really unbelievable. How dare they rate a camera by using it and looking at the pictures it takes. It is grossly unfair and should be stopped. How can we have rampant consumerism and ego bound self proclaimed experts being overshadowed by a consumer magazine that uses real people to rate cameras.
      Why! We will have no arguments here other than equivalence. But wait it does not matter. The magazine does not know what equivalence means. Maybe we will just have to post nice comments to each other. This will never do.

      • Uncle_Pix

        I unterstand the incomprehension. But we have to live with Stiftung Warentest. It’s an institution, a very helpful institution in many cases. But I wouldn’t buy a camera or a gadget because of a “good” badge of SW. The tests are too much simplified. But there are several other kinds of products where Stiftung Warentest delivers many useful informations, e. g. if consumer goods have noxious effects or how stable they are in the long run.

        They explain their testing method and their rating system. It is understandable for “normal” people. There are many other magazines that don’t act this way – and are influenced by companies and personal tastes. So do these other magazines really better?

  • jazzcrab

    Reading Stiftung Warentest reviews since about 40 years, I never would rely on their tests of any complex technical devices including (digital or analog) cameras. You should also be aware of their testing criteria and the emphasis laid on specific features. Nonetheless, even in their opinion the difference between all these cameras is, if there is any, only marginal. No reason to fuss about this test.

    I am reading their tests of detergents etc., which sometimes is helpful.

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