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Meet the New Boss: Pansonic Lumix DMC-LX7 Has Fast f/1.4 Zoom Lens

Meet the New Boss: Pansonic Lumix DMC-LX7 Has Fast f/1.4 Zoom Lens

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New flagship compact digital camera

By Fred Singer

July 18, 2012

Panasonic today introduced the LX7, replacing the popular LX5 and offering improvements in lens and sensor specs, and claims of better image quality.


Adorama is now accepting pre-orders for the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7 Black and White models. The camera is expected to ship in late August. Orders will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis; credit cards will not be charged until orders ship.

 

With the introduction today of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7, Panasonic has updated the top of its premium compact digital camera lineup with a category-leading zoom lens aperture and a new sensor that promises improved image quality. The LX-7 replaces the 2-year-old but still-popular LX-5 and offers several key upgrades:

  • 24-90mm (35mm equivalent) f/1.4-2.3 zoom lens
  • New 10.1MP 1/1.7-inch CMOS sensor
  • 16 Creative Control Filters
  • 3-inch, 920k dot resolution LCD monitor
  • 11fps burst rate at full resolution
  • 1080p videos in 60 or 30 fps



Panasonic is clearly aiming the LX7 at enthusiasts who understand the significance of the camera's upgraded features. The LX7's wide f/1.4 aperture at the widest setting may well be the fastest compact camera lens to date. The Leica-branded lens has 11 elements in 10 groups with 5 aspherical lenses and an ED lens. The new sensor is claimed to offer improved image quality compared to the sensor in the already highly-regarded predecessor LX5; Panasonic says the signal-noise ratio has been improved by 1.5dB, resulting in richer gradation and higher dynamic range when shooting at lower ISO settings. The revamped Venus Engine optimizing the noise reduction process selectively within the image.




The camera's exposure control set is designed for quick access and adjustment. The LX7 features an aperture ring, focus lever and a rear dial to control shutter speed and other settings; full manual control is available. Full auto modes include iA (intelligent auto) and iA Plus; other features include Intelligent D-Range Control, Intelligent Scene Selector, Face Recognition, Intelligent HDR, defocus controls, night shooting modes, exposure compensation and white balance control. The LX7 captures RAW and JPEG image files.

The camera's 16 filters include Soft Focus, Dynamic Monochrome, Impressive Art, One Point Color, Cross Process, Low Key, Toy Effect, Star Filter, Expressive, Retro, High Key, Sepia, Hi Dynamic, Miniature Effect and the new exclusive Radial Defocus and Smooth Defocus modes. According to Panasonic, Radial Defocus adds defocus effect radially from the light source while Smooth Defocus makes defocus figuration even smoother. A Time Lapse function is also offered.

The Panasonic LX7 is part of a growing ecosystem that includes an external optical viewfinder, three shoe-mount flashes, filters and battery packs. The camera is expected to sell for $500 and will be available at the end of August. Pre-order Panasonic LX7 black or white body cameras.


For details, read the Panasonic press release

PANASONIC INTRODUCES THE LUMIX LX7, FEATURING A FULLY REDESIGNED LENS, IMAGING PROCESSOR AND ENGINE FOR POWERFUL PERFORMANCE AND OUTSTANDING PICTURE QUALITY

LUMIX LX7 Features 24mm Ultra-wide Angle Lens with 3.8x Optical Zoom*1 and F1.4 – F2.3 Full-range Brightness

 

July 18, 2012 (Secaucus, NJ) - Panasonic today announced its new premium digital compact camera, the LUMIX DMC-LX7, from the world-renowned LX series which has been long acclaimed by photography enthusiasts for its high picture quality and creative descriptiveness. The new LUMIX LX7 is equipped with a fully re-designed lens, image sensor and image processing engine for superior performance and stunning image quality.

 

“The Panasonic LUMIX LX-Series cameras have been extremely popular models for both professional and enthusiast photographers, who understand the value and superb image quality such a compact, affordable digital camera can offer,” said Marc Sorkin, Senior Product Manager, Imaging, Panasonic Consumer Marketing Company of North America. “We expect the same enthusiasm, if not more, for the LUMIX LX7, which features major upgrades and improvements resulting in even better image quality.”

 

Equipped with a newly developed 24mm ultra-wide angle LEICA DC VARIO-SUMMILUX lens with 3.8x optical zoom*1, the LUMIX LX7’s supreme lens also features F1.4 brightness at wide-end and F2.3 at tele-end.  The F1.4 brightness is approximately 400% as bright as an F2.8 lens.  The extraordinarily rich amount of light allows for the use of higher shutter speed to capture stunningly clear, sharp, blur-free images in low light situations and also provides impressive expression to images by reproducing exquisite gradation and mellow defocus to elevate photography.

 

The LUMIX LX7’s lens unit consists of 11 elements in 10 groups with five aspherical lenses with nine aspherical surfaces, including the dual-sided aspherical surface ED (Extra-low Dispersion) lens, which has never before been adopted by any Panasonic LUMIX digital camera or interchangeable lens.  This advanced lens system makes it easy to produce beautiful photos in high resolution with minimal distortion and a pleasing, soft-focused background.  Nano Surface Coating technology dramatically minimizes light reflection at entire visual range (380nm-780nm).  The LX7’s 24mm ultra-wide-angle lens gives users a wider range of composition possibilities, capturing approximately 136% larger viewing space compared to that of a 28mm wide angle camera.  Additionally, the LUMIX LX7’s lens minimizes distortion at wide end so users obtain stunning, true-to-life images with outstanding resolution and detail.

 

The LUMIX LX7 adopts a new 1/1.7-inch 10.1-megapixel*2 MOS Sensor that features an improved S/N ratio by 1.5 dB compared with its predecessor, the LUMIX DMC-LX5*3 which results in high resolution images with stunning clarity in high sensitivity recording and also in low ISO, reproducing rich gradation with wide dynamic range even when the situation is highly contrasted.  The LUMIX LX7’s high performance Venus Engine also boasts advanced signal processing.  The Intelligent NR (Noise Reduction) system keeps resolution high by optimizing the NR process applied to each part of an image.  The Multi-process NR quickly detects brightness in each portion of a picture and applies optimal noise reduction in multiple steps.  High-speed digital signal output has been integrated into the LUMIX LX7 to realize high-speed consecutive shooting at 11 fps (frames per second) in full resolution with mechanical shutter and 5 fps with continuous AF (Auto Focus).

 

Creative Control Mode offers 16 filter options including Soft Focus*4, Dynamic Monochrome, Impressive Art, One Point Color, Cross Process, Low Key, Toy Effect, Star Filter, Expressive, Retro, High Key, Sepia, Hi Dynamic, Miniature Effect*5 and the new exclusive Radial Defocus and Smooth Defocus modes.  Radial Defocus adds defocus effect radially from the light source while Smooth Defocus makes defocus figuration even smoother.  Photo Style is also available to provide photos with finer expression with Standard, Vivid, Natural, Monochrome, Scenery, Portrait and Custom preset options.  The Time Lapse Shot function allows users to capture a record of stationary observation for objects such as flowers coming into bloom, wild animals and moving clouds.  Additionally, full manual control is available on the LUMIX LX7 so advanced users can enjoy more creative photography. 

 

The LUMIX LX7 features both iA (Intelligent Auto) and iA Plus modes.  In addition to the popular functions of iA- POWER O.I.S., AF Tracking, Intelligent D-range Control, Intelligent Scene Selector, Face Recognition, Intelligent ISO Control, Intelligent HDR (High Dynamic Range), Intelligent Handheld Night Shot and Motion Deblur*6 modes- iA Plus mode allows users to adjust defocusing area in the background, exposure compensation and white balance for more flexible control

 

Equipped with a new 3.0-inch 920,000-dot Intelligent LCD screen with super high resolution and wide angle viewing, the LUMIX LX7’s screen brightness automatically adjusts in 11 steps as surrounding brightness levels change, ensuring easy visibility at all times.  To enhance operability, the LUMIX LX7 has been equipped with an aperture ring, internal ND filter, focus lever and rear dial in order to control light source.  The newly added Level Gauge detects horizontal or vertical angle of view which is helpful in keeping horizontal composition even when shooting in high or low angle.

 

In addition to recording stunning still imagery, the LUMIX LX7 also records high resolution full-HD 1,920x1,080 60p videos in AVCHD Progressive (MPEG-4 / H.264) format or 30p in MP4.  The LUMIX LX7 features a dedicated video record button on the top of the camera body so users can instantly start recording videos while shooting photographs without changing any settings.  Along with full-HD video capabilities with 3.8x optical zoom with step zoom function and POWER O.I.S., the LUMIX LX7 also features high-quality sound, recorded with Dolby® Digital Stereo Creator to offer highly realistic sound to images.  The stereo microphone comes with a zoom noise reduction system and an Auto Wind Cut function blocks out most background noise from wind.  Additionally, Creative Video mode lets users set the camera shutter speed, which can create special effects in videos, and aperture, which is convenient when there are several subjects at different distances, manually to create even more impressive videos.   

 

The LUMIX LX7 offers rich accessory options for camera expandability to match every shooting situation and style.  The hot shoe atop the camera body allows for the attachment of advanced accessories including the optional tilt-shift Live View Finder (DMW-LVF2) which helps monitoring even under strong daylight with high visibility.  Additional camera accessories include:

§         External Optical View Finder: DMW-VF1

§         Filter Adaptor: DMW-FA1 NEW

§         MC Protector: DMW-LMCH37

§         ND Filter: DMW-LND37

§         PL Filter: DMW-LPLA37 NEW

§         External Flash: DMW-FL220 (GN22) / DMW-FL360 (GN36) / DMW-FL500 (GN50)

§         Genuine Leather Case: DMW-CLX7 NEW

§         Battery Pack: DMW-BCJ13

 

Additional features of the LUMIX LX7 include:

    RAW and RAW+JPEG data recording options
    Aspect Bracket / White Balance Bracket
    HDR mode
    Panorama Shot mode
    3D Photo mode
    Creative Retouch 

 

The LUMIX DMC-LX7 will be available in black and white.  Pricing and availability will be announced approximately 30 days prior to shipping.  For more information about Panasonic LUMIX digital cameras and lenses, please visit www.panasonic.com/lumix.

 

*1 35mm camera equivalent: 24-90mm

*2 Camera effective pixels

*3 Panasonic in-house comparison with the LX5

*4 For photo only

*5 Sound will not be recorded with [MINIATURE EFFECT] and approximately 1/10 of the time period is recorded. (If you record for 10 minutes, the resulting motion picture recording will be approximately 1 minute long)

*6 The picture size may be reduced.

• Maximum time to record motion pictures continuously with [AVCHD] is 29 minutes 59 seconds. (excluding when [SH] is set)

• Motion pictures in [MP4] can be recorded continuously for up to 29 minutes 59 seconds. Also, motion picture recorded continuously in [MP4] is up to 4 GB.

* Leica is a registered trademark of Leica Microsystems IR GmbH.

* The LEICA DC VARIO-SUMMILUX lenses are manufactured using measurement instruments and quality assurance systems that have been certified by Leica Camera AG based on the company's quality standards.

* "AVCHD Progressive", "AVCHD", the "AVCHD Progressive" Logo and the "AVCHD" Logo are trademarks of Panasonic Corporation and Sony Corporation.

* Dolby and the double-D symbol are trademarks of Dolby Laboratories.

* HDMI, the HDMI logo and High-Definition Multimedia Interface are trademarks or registered trademarks of HDMI Licensing LLC.

* All other company and product names are trademarks of their respective corporations.

* This unit is compatible with both SD/SDHC/SDXC Memory Cards. You can only use SDHC Memory Cards on devices that are compatible with them. You cannot use SDHC Memory Cards on devices that are only compatible with SD Memory Cards. (When using an SDHC Memory Card on another device, be sure to read the operating instructions for that device.)

* Some accessories are not available in some countries.

* The use of recorded or printed materials that are protected by copyright for any purpose other than personal enjoyment is prohibited, as it would infringe upon the rights of the copyright holder.

* Design and specifications are subject to change without notice.

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