We have a look at Panasonic’s latest 6 mega-pixel snapper, part of the new Lumix range of cameras.Aesthetically, the camera looks very much like a miniaturized DSLR, with it’s sleek handle and robust frame.
It has a retractable lens which offers a superb zoom function, and a sharp, positively huge LCD screen attached to the back.
The dials on the top of the unit remind me a lot of standard SLR cameras of old, and these control the various mode selections etc…
One thing about it is, where it is a step between compact and DSLR, it’s quite difficult to fit your hands on it to hold it like a larger digital camera.
It has a quick start-up time, and the simple mode will do all of the necessary calculations for you to get you great pictures.
However, if like me you have had some photographic training and like to experiment with shutter speeds and F-Stops, there is a full manual mode for you to tweak about with to your hearts content. This adds a lot more to the functionality to the unit, and brings another depth (and more playing time) to it.Battery-wise, it performed well, going several shoots without needing to be recharged, although I would suggest if going abroad (e.g. on safari), you invest in a spare battery.The pictures produced are truly awesome (I won’t post any here, as they’d need to be adjusted for web-viewing, which sort of counter-acts the point), being nice and light in all conditions, with none of the darkness experienced with some other digi-cameras I’ve played with.
Overall, this has to be one of the best non-top-end cameras I’ve used with all the right features for all types of users. Perhaps the chassis could have been a little bigger, but this is definitely a camera I’d invest in, and with the price on Amazon of only a little over £200, it’s certainly good value.