Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100 digital camera review

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100 digital camera review

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100 digital camera review

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100 digital camera review

Fujifilm, which released the Fujifilm FinePix X100 model back in 2010, can be considered the founder of the current fashion for retro-style cameras with retro controls. The X100 and its successors feature a large APS-C sensor, but their versatility as photographic tools is markedly limited by the use of a fixed 35mm equivalent focal length lens. In this sense, the Panasonic Lumix LX100 can be called a reasonable compromise: this camera offers the potential owner a fast zoom lens with 24-75 mm EGF and a 4/3 sensor, which, although smaller in area than APS-C, is still much larger than compact cameras. At the same time, we note that the dimensions of the Lumix LX100 are much smaller than the Fujifilm X100; it’s more like a quality compact like the Canon PowerShot G or the Samsung EX1/EX2.

Although Panasonic managed to pack a 16-megapixel 4/3 sensor into the compact body of the Lumix LX100, that’s not the whole truth; the truth is that the sensor is slightly larger than the image circle of the lens. When the user selects an aspect ratio of 4:3 or 16:9, the image is simply cut out of the matrix with the proportions of the desired size. Due to this, pictures taken with different aspect ratios (with the exception of 1:1) have the same diagonal angle of view. At the same time, the final resolution does not exceed 12.7 MP (in 4:3 mode) and drops to 11.2 MP in 16:9 mode.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100-2 digital camera review

The Panasonic LX100 looks and feels very nice: the body of the camera is completely made of metal, on the right there is a small but grippy rubber patch under the arm, which prevents the device from slipping out of the hands. There is an emphasis on the back for the thumb.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100-3 digital camera review

You won’t find a mode dial on the LX100, instead the camera uses a separate shutter speed dial and aperture ring. This does not mean that there are no automatic modes in the camera, they are simply selected as follows:

Exposure Aperture Mode
A A automatic
A manual aperture priority
manual A shutter priority

There is a separate dial for setting the exposure compensation (±3 stops in 1/3 increments). Full dummies can turn on the iA ("intelligent auto") mode by pressing the appropriate button, but, in our opinion, no one will buy such a camera and use it in stupid soap dish mode for $ 50. Rather, this mode is needed in order to hand the camera to someone else for 5 minutes at a party and ask to take a picture of you. The top panel also has a Filter button that allows you to choose what effect to apply to the image (only when shooting in JPEG). This button, like iA, is located very conveniently, so it’s a pity that its functions cannot be reassigned in the menu.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100-4 digital camera review

In addition to the aperture ring, the lens has an aspect ratio switch and an autofocus mode switch (manual, auto, and auto-macro). The focus ring of the LX100 is electronic, it does not move the lenses inside the lens, but transmits the appropriate commands to the camera. In autofocus mode, it can be used for something useful.

The rear controls are typical of today’s cameras, with a five-way navigation key surrounded by a rotary control ring and eight buttons, three of which can be reprogrammed in the menu. The screen on the LX100 is neither touch nor swivel, which is a pity (I think that we will see both in the next model with the conditional name Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100 Mark II).

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX100-5 digital camera review

The most amazing thing is that Panasonic managed to place in the miniature body of the LX100 not only a large matrix and a fast zoom lens, but also a full-fledged electronic viewfinder with a resolution of 1024×768 pixels. The quality of the viewfinder is inferior to Panasonic’s flagship mirrorless cameras, but it also does its job, in general, it copes (in particular, it allows you to take pictures in bright conditions when the screen is practically useless).

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