February 24, 2008: Panasonic has added seven new models to its popular Lumix digicam range, including two new ‘traveller’s zoom’ models with long zoom lenses in compact camera bodies.
The new models all feature Panasonic’s fourth-generation image-processing LSI, the Venus Engine IV and Panasonic’s ‘Intelligent Auto’ (iA) mode, which ensures that exposure is well balanced across an image and detail maintained. This is achieved by changing ISO settings only in specific regions of the sensor. Alternatively, if the background of an indoor portrait has insufficient flash, ISO sensitivity is raised only in the low-lit area to make it brighter without causing graininess in the subject’s face.
All Lumix cameras can take 1920 x 1080 pixel HD (high-definition) photos that are ideal for display on a wide-screen (16:9) HDTV. You can create slideshows with a variety of transition effects and matching music using the supplied software. All models feature Panasonic’s Mega O.I.S. image stabilisation system. The FS and TZ series models also come with continuous AF, which adjusts focus to ensure moving objects are sharp. They also include a Face Detection system that can detect up to 15 human faces and adjust focus and exposure accordingly.
The new DMC-TZ15 and DMC-TZ11 models are equipped with a 10x Leica zoom lens with a wide angle setting of 28mm lens. The 9.1-megapixel DMC-TZ15 (RRP $715) will be on sale in April, while the 8.1-megapixel DMC-TZ11 (RRP $599) is due for release in May. They also include an Intelligent Scene Selector, which automatically selects the appropriate scene mode from the most frequently-used modes such as Portrait, Scenery, Macro, Night Scenery and Night Portrait. The TZ15 model also comes with Digital Red-Eye Correction, which automatically corrects the red-eye effect caused by the use of the flash, via software in the camera. Optional marine cases are available for both models.
DMC-TZ15 front view.
DMC0TZ15 back view.
The new 10.1-megapixel DMC-FX36 (RRP $659) comes with a 4x optical zoom Leica DC Vario-Elmar f/2.8 lens with an ultra-wide setting equivalent to 25mm on a 35mm camera. Due for release in March, it has a slim silver body that makes it ultra-portable. It also features Digital Red-Eye Correction. New additions to the FS series include the 8.1-megapixel DMC-FS3 (RRP $329), which is available now and includes a 3x optical zoom Leica DC Vario-Elmar f/2.8 lens.
DMC-FX36 front view.
DMC-FX36 rear view (gold colour).
The new 10.1-megapixel DMC-FS20 (RRP $549) and DMC-FS5 (RRP $499) models feature 4x optical zoom Leica DC lenses with wide angle settings equivalent to 30mm. The FS5 model will be available in March, with the FS20 following in May.
DMC-FS5 front view.
DMC-FS5 back view.
At entry level is the DMC-LS80 (RRP $219), which is available now and combines 8.1-megapixel resolution with a 3x zoom lens and sports a convenient ‘Easy Zoom’ feature switches the camera to full 3x zoom at the touch of a button. Focal length settings range from the equivalent of 33mm in 35mm format to 100mm. The zoom ratio is further extended to 4.8x by activating the Extra Optical Zoom function, which extends the zoom range while reducing output resolution. This model has 24MB of internal memory and uses two AA batteries.
DMC-LS80, front view.
DMC-LS80 back view.
For more information on the above cameras and details of stockists, phone Panasonic on 132 600 or visit www.panasonic.com.au.