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New Lumix digital cameras

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Panasonic will introduce four new Lumix digital cameras. The DMC-FX150 is equipped with 14.7 megapixels, a 28mm wide-angle LEICA DC VARIO-ELMARIT lens with F2.8 brightness and 3.6x optical zoom. The DMC-LX3 features a F2.0 24mm LEICA DC VARIO-SUMMICRON lens, 10.1 megapixels and an ultra-sensitive 1/1.63-inch CCD. The DMC-FX37 has 10.1 megapixel, a 25mm ultra wide-angle LEICA DC lens, and a 5x optical zoom as well as Intelligent Auto Mode (iA) for automatic photo mode changer. The DMC-FZ28 boasts a 27mm wide-angle LEICA lens with an 18x optical zoom as well as the 10.1 megapixel digital camera and iA and new auto focus tracking functions.

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15MP wow!!

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Humongus numbers of MP are not all that important, if you consider that most people content themselves with compressed formats and that picture files larger than 1MB are a scare for many. Why have 10 or 12 or 15 MP at hand for shooting a JPEG-mutilated picture ? I would like to ask one question to the competent and passionate ones : does one know anything about when a new rangefinder digital body could be released, and by whom ? I just regret I did not have the good idea to buy the interesting EPSON RDs-1 when it was available ; not perfect, say some, but not as outrageously priced as the Leica M8 (which has expensive shortcomings though). What next ? Thanks for any piece of info.

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I agree with Freespeech. High megapixel counts are just marketing gimmicks- what counts is sensor size, and compact digital cameras (and rangefinders) have tiny sensors. If you really want good pictures get a DSLR, which has a decent size sensor. As for a good rangefinder, have you checked out the Canon G9? Albeit it has a small sensor, but otherwise it's a good camera, and it shoots RAW pictures (I own the previous-gen G7).

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Thankyou upnorth71. On the MP issue, and to confirm that we share the same and sane point of view : I believe that with film technology a good 35mm frame (good meaning with fine-grain low to medium sensitivity emulsion) had no more than 7MP (i.e. silver particles) in the best case... And great photographers were happy with the resolution. Of course, other photographers were able to obtain plenty MP working with larger formats ; is it that now the average Japanese tourist wants to shoot himself with the Missus in front of Mona Lisa with 15MP put behind a crummy lens with plenty aberrations ? Coming back to my "dream" of a viewfinder digital, I forgot to say that I am expecting a body with "M" lens mount. Of my beloved Leica M6 I have kept two great lenses, although I sold the body. These lenses have got to be used some time, you know !

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The LX3 is looking pretty good to me. Besides the fact that they didn't get out of hand with the megapixels, it looks as if the larger sensor and improved processing algorithms mean better noise performance than previous Pannies. (I'm not just quoting the market-speak here; I actually downloaded some ISO test samples over the weekend and printed them out.)

It's still not as good as the Fuji cameras for noise performance, but it's getting closer, and with that bright lens you have a stop or more of exposure advantage anyway. You also get at least some control over depth of field (large-ish sensor, bright lens).

Looks like a killer social camera.

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upnorth

the G9 is not a rangefinder those are point & shoots, the G series are very good but rangefinders they aint!

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It's a ripoff of the Ricoh GR Digital II, right down to the viewfinder and pop-up flash. I guess the company is determined to live up to its reputation for being known as "Maneshia." (Maneru* is Japanese for "to imitate".)

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Beelzebub,

Not exactly. Remember that Panasonic beat Ricoh to the game with the LX1, which incidentally had the same pop-up flash. Besides, the Ricoh has a fixed focal-length lens; the LX3 has a zoom. I'll concede that the Ricoh (and the Sigma DP-1) are probably what inspired Panny to add a hot shoe.

Actually, you'll see that the LX3 looks a lot more like its ancestors (the LX1 and LX2) than it does like the GR.

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Time for a new camera. I still use a 2MP camera every now and then.

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As far as most gaijin are concerned anything new from Panasonic is a complete load of rubbish and are useless. I purchased a Lumix DMC-FS20 expecting it to be at least as good or better than the Lumix I gave my girlfriend a few months before. Then when I used it, I discovered that or language menus other than Japanese had been removed. Panasonic helpline refuses to help.

I suspect this new feature (or lack of features) will find its way into the whole range.

My advice: steer clear of Lumix and Panasonic products unless you are Japanese.

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