Panasonic Lumix G3 gets viewfinder and 1080p, FH7 goes full touch

This morning Panasonic announced two new additions to its Lumix lineup: the Lumix DMC-G3 and the Lumix FH7. The DMC-G3 is the latest addition to Panasonic’s interchangeable lens digital cameras, and not only does it boast an upgraded 16-megapixel sensor, but it’s the smallest model Panasonic has yet to introduce in its compact system cameras. We’re big fans of these DSLR-pocket-cam hybrids, and the Lumix has been at the forefront of this technology with its G-series.

DMC-G3

g3Like most compact DSLRs, the DMC-G3 appeals to novices and comfortable photographers alike. Advanced users will appreciate the availability to control shutter and aperture, and beginners can rely on automatic and scene settings and work their way up. Panasonic also outfits the DMC-G3 with a slew of creative filters, like “retro” and “high dynamic.”

G3Taking its DSLR qualities a step further,  however, the DMC-G3 features am eye-level electronic viewfinder, so you aren’t relying on the 3-inch LCD display alone (like its predecessors, the display rotates). It also includes touch control shooting, which enables shooters to use autofocus by simply tapping the screen. The DMC-G3’s touch control also stays focused on moving objects, and is the first Panasonic camera to feature Pinpoint AF, a new technology from the manufacturer which allows “extremely precise near-pixel-level focus point setting” using the touch control. From the sounds of it, the DMC-G3 eliminates the frustration that comes with many digital cameras featuring touch screens, which can be unreliable, unresponsive, or imprecise. There are a variety of other uses for the touchscreen, including playback, exposure control, background defocusing, and color balance control.

What might be most impressive about the DMC-G3 is its speed. The camera can shoot up to four frames per second at full resolution, and if you’re willing to sacrifice quality and shoot at a reduced resolution of 4 megapixels, it can get up to 20 frames per second.

The Lumix DMC-G3 will be available in June with the 14-42mm Zoom Lens Kit for $699.99. Here are a few of its technical specs worth noting.

  • 16-megapixel sensor
  • 1920×1080 full-HD video recording
  • Built-in flash and hotshoe
  • 3-inch, 1,440,000-dot resolution LCD
  • Venus Engine FHD image processor

Lumix FH7

Not wanting to isolate any entry-level consumers, Panasonic is also releasing the Lumix FH7. There’s  nothing DSLR-reminiscent about this beginner point-and-shoot; that said, Panasonic didn’t skimp on its insides. The FH7 comes equipped with a 28mm wide-angle LEICA DC lens, 16.1-megapixel sensor, 4x optical zoom and High-Def, 24 frames per second video recording capabilities.

FH7The FH7 takes it a step further than your average point-and-shoot and includes touchscreen capabilities (although we’re seeing this become more and more common). It will function similarly to the DMC-G3 in this regard, with zoom, focus, shutter, playback, and scene selector abilities. Panasonic also throws in some basic editing functions with the touchscreen, including skin-clearing and teeth-whitening abilities. It might sound like a gimmicky feature, but beginner’s will appreciate being able to forego using editing software.

side back FH7Following right along with pocket cam trends, the FH7 also has auto-share options so that uploading your photos to your computer and social media sites is a one step process. The camera can also detect lighting conditions and automatically adjust LCD brightness, and add one of 32 “stamps” to images for personalization.

Pricing and its release date are not available yet. Here’s a look at some of its specs.

  • 16.1-megapixel sensor
  • 3-inch Smart Touchscreen
  • 28mm wide-angle lens with 4x optical zoom
  • Mega OIS (optical image stabilization)
  • Intelligent ISO control
  • Venus Engine VI image processor
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