Well, I did it. I bought myself an early Christmas present: the Panasonic DMC-LX3 I’d been drooling over.
It is an interesting camera; when it comes to the specs everyone knows and loves, it doesn’t stand out. Its megapixel count is “only” 10.0, and the zoom is just 2.5x. Novices will shrug their shoulders and move on. In order to appreciate the camera, you have to know what an aperture number means (f/2.0 to f/2.8 anyone?) and have a feel for what a 24mm lens will do for you.
First impressions are very good. It feels nice in the hand, with a smooth metal case and a hefty piece of glass up front. The camera body is only about 1 inch thick, but the retracted lens adds close to another inch. The screen is very large and bright, and the controls seem decent, although the Menu button seems to function different from my brain, as I keep pressing it at the wrong times.
I bought this camera to fill a gap between my DSLR (Olympus E-500) and my little waterproof point-and-shoot (Olympus 770SW). Both cameras are are good in their respective elements, but neither excels at social occasions. The DSLR is too large to cart around to many events and can make people uncomfortable when you point it at them. The 770SW takes nice photos outside during the day, but is quite poor at night or indoors, when many gatherings take place.
So enter the DMC-LX3. With its fast, stabilized lens and small size, it seems to fill the gap nicely.
I played around in the house last night snapping pictures of every little thing I spotted and was quite impressed with the initial images. In macro mode at wide angle it can focus on things that are practically touching the lens, which is fun but dangerous! Below are some samples. Click here for a couple more.1 comment
I too have truly enjoyed my LX3 … it’s a wonderful camera.
For me the biggest news was the focus on noise. While everyone else was shooting up the megapixel scale to 12 and 14 million, Panasonic held at 10 and worked at improving the image quality. This was key for me. Add to this the great f2 lens which goes to 24mm and you have some great fundamentals but there’s so much more! The things you can do with this camera are amazing. Drawbacks? Two that I can think of: 1) no viewfinder and 2) loose lens cap. Solution for that latter can be found at:
BTW, I have the same range of cameras: DSLR, Point-and-Shoot, and Underwater.
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