The Panasonic has been one of my go-to compact camera recommendations for what seems like forever, although it’s really been four years. Panasonic has now finally updated it, replacing the 12.8-megapixel Four Thirds sensor with a 17-megapixel version that doesn’t have a blurring optical low-pass filter and incorporating Panasonic’s latest features. (Actually, it’s a 21.8MP sensor, but but because the camera supports multiple aspect ratios the effective resolution is lower).
Panasonic expects to ship the LX100 II in October for $1,000 (directly converted, £775 and AU$1,360). But if that’s too pricey for you, the original will be staying around, and currently goes for $600 or so (around £500 and AU$750)
Most of the upgrades copy the; it incorporates the same sensor and Venus Engine image processor, as well the addition of Panasonic’s 4K Photo burst mode, post focus and focus stacking with a new Light Composition mode (which merges burst shots to improve the tonal range of the final photograph).
Other updates include:
- Touchpad AF (the ability to use the LCD for touch focus while looking through the viewfinder)
- New monochrome profiles
- Bluetooth for connecting and remote shutter
- USB charging
- New grip material
- Increase to 10 programmable function buttons
- Time mode increase from 2 minutes to 30
The Four Thirds sensor (17.3 x 13mm) in the LX100 models definitely provides a step up in photo quality from the 1-inch sensor (13.2 x 8.8mm) popular in most advanced compacts these days, but by the same token Fujifilm‘s new offers a bigger APS-C sensor (23.5 x 15.8mm) for a lot less money — $500. But the XF10 also has a fixed focal-length lens compared to the 24-75mm f1.7-2.8 on the LX100 and LX100 II, which makes it less practical as a general-purpose camera.