Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 Review

By Movable Type Admin


Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3


Review posted 4/22/2008

Introduction & Physical Views


Click to take a QuickTime VR tour of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3
Click on the Lumix FS3 to take a QuickTime VR tour

Panasonic has unveiled a new compact line of LUMIX digital cameras with the new FS-Series. The DMC-FS3 is one of the first models in this line, and features 8.1 megapixels, a f2.8 Leica DC VARIO-ELMARIT 3x optical zoom lens, and Panasonic's Intelligent Auto Mode. The FS-Series, a sister line to the world-acclaimed FX-Series, also includes the newly announced DMC-FS20 and DMC-FS5, and the entire series offers easy and intuitive operation that helps consumers produce high-quality images.

The DMC-FS3 offers a new image-processing LSI, the Venus Engine IV, which contains a more advanced signal processing technology for rendering higher-quality images and produces a faster response time. In addition, the camera boasts the new Intelligent LCD, meaning the 2.5-inc LCD screen detects the lighting condition and controls the brightness level to offer optimal clarity in any situation, whether dark or light; indoors or outdoors.

Panasonic's Intelligent Auto Mode is comprised of five distinct technologies designed to provide users with intuitive and automatic camera adjustments no matter the shooting condition and without the user having to do anything manually. Intelligent Auto Mode consists of the following:

  • MEGA O.I.S. - Gyrosensors detect hand-shake and the lens system shifts to compensate, helping to prevent hand-shake from creating a blurry image.
  • Intelligent ISO - Can determine if the photo subject is moving and change the ISO setting and shutter speed accordingly, thus giving a blur-free photo.
  • Intelligent Scene Selector - Senses the ambient conditions, recognizes the shooting environment and will automatically select the appropriate scene mode from: Scenery, Portrait, Macro, Night Portrait or Night Scenery mode.
  • Face Detection - Panasonic's Face Detection detects up to 15 faces anywhere in the frame, even if they are moving, and automatically chooses the optimal focus and exposure settings so portraits come out clear and crisp.
  • Quick AF - The Quick AF (auto focus) system starts focus on the subject by just pointing the camera to the subject, thus minimizing the AF time.


Major DMC-FS3 Features:

  • 8-megapixel imager with 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9 aspect ratios
  • 3x Leica zoom lens, equivalent to 33-100mm on a 35mm camera
  • Optical image stabilization to prevent camera shake and blurring
  • 9-point AF system with Face detection technology
  • Macro focus down to 0.16 feet (5 cm)
  • 2.5-inch high-resolution TFT color monitor
  • Intelligent Auto, Normal Picture (Program), Movie and 22 scene modes
  • ISO Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600; High Sensitivity Mode (1600 - 6400)
  • 3fps Burst mode (Max 4 JPEG Fine images)
  • QuickTime movies, 30fps or 10fps 640x480/320x240 or 848x480 using 16:9 aspect ratio
  • Built-in flash with auto, fill, slow synchro and red-eye reduction modes
  • TTL Auto White Balance, 5 presets and custom set
  • 27MB of internal flash memory
  • Card slot supports SD/SDHC/MMC card storage
  • Plug-n-Play USB, Mass Storage compliant
  • PictBridge Direct-Print compatible
  • Powered by rechargeable Li-ion battery


The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 is available in blue, pink, green, silver and black with an MSRP of US$199.95. The camera kit includes: battery charger, battery pack, battery carrying case, AV & USB cables, hand strap, and software CD-ROM.


Physical Views

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3



Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3

The DMC-FS3 compared in size to a standard CD disc.




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Features & Controls





Lumix DMC-FS3 Specifications

Camera Type Stylish Compact
KEY FEATURES .
Camera Effective Pixels 8.1 Megapixels
Optical Image Stabilizer MEGA O.I.S. (Mode 1 / Mode 2)
Optical Zoom 3x
Image Sensor 1/2.5", 8.32 Total Megapixels CCD, Primary Color Filter
Extra Optical Zoom 4:3 Aspect Ratio: 3.8x for 5 Mega, 4.8x for 3 Mega, 2 Mega, 0.3 Mega
3:2 Aspect Ratio: 3.8x for 4.5 Mega, 4.8x for 2.5 Mega
16:9 Aspect Ratio: 3.8x for 3.5 Mega, 4.8x for 2 Mega
Digital Zoom 1 4x
(Max. 12.0x combined with Optical Zoom without Extra Optical Zoom)
(Max. 19.2x combined with Extra Optical Zoom)
Focal Length f=5.5-16.5mm (35mm Equiv.: 33-100mm)
Lens Leica DC Vario-Elmarit Lens
Aperture Range Wide: F2.8 / F8.0 (2 steps)
Tele: F5.1 / F14 (2 steps)
PERFORMANCE FEATURES .
Conversion Lens Compatibility No
Focusing Area Normal: 50cm - infinity
Macro / Intelligent AUTO: Wide 5cm / Tele 30cm - infinity
AF Metering Face / 1-point/ 1-point high speed/ 9-point
Focus Normal / Macro, Quick AF On/Off
AF Assist Lamp Yes
ISO Sensitivity Auto /100 / 200 / 400 / 800 / 1600 (High Sensitivity Mode : Auto(1600 - 6400) )
White Balance Auto / Daylight / Cloudy / Shade / Halogen / White Set / White Balance Adjustment (only in underwater mode) (Selectable at Portrait, Soft Skin,Self-Portrait, Sports, Baby, Pet, High Sensitivity, and High-speed Burst mode
Exposure Program AE
Exposure Compensation 1/3 EV Step, ± 2 EV
Backlight Compensation Yes (at Intelligent AUTO mode)
Auto Bracketing (AE) +/- 1/3 EV ~ 1EV step, 3 frames
Light Metering Intelligent Multiple
Dedicated Button/Mode Switch Dedicated Button: Macro
Mode Switch: Shooting, Playback
Shooting Mode (Mode Dial)/Rec. Mode Dial: Normal Picture, Motion Picture, Intelligent AUTO, Clipboard
Scene Modes SCN (Portrait, Soft Skin, Scenery, Sports, Night Portrait, Night Scenery, Self-Portrait, Food, Party, Candle Light, Fireworks, Starry Sky, Beach, Aerial Photo, Snow, High Sensitivity, Baby 1&2, Underwater, Sunset, Pet, Hi-Speed Burst)
Advanced Scene Mode No
Shutter Speed/Shutter System 8 - 1/2,000 sec.
Starry Sky Mode: 15, 30, 60 sec.
Self Timer 10 seconds / 2 seconds
Auto Review 1sec, 3sec, Zoom, Hold
Review No
Picture Adjustment No
Color Effect Mode No
Color Mode Standard/Vivid/Cool/Warm/Natural/Black & White/Sepia
Recording Format Still Image: JPEG (design rule for camera file system, based on Exif 2.21 standard), DPOF Corresponding
Image with audio: JPEG (design rule for camera file system, based on Exif 2.21 standard)+ QuickTime
Motion Picture: QuickTime Motion JPEG
Image Quality Fine/Standard
RECORDING IMAGE SIZE (Pixels) .
4:3 Aspect Ratio (Still Image) 3264 x 2448
2560 x 1920
2048 x 1536
1600 x 1200
640 x 480
3:2 Aspect Ratio (Still Image) 3264 x 2176
2560 x 1712
2048 x 1360
16:9 Aspect Ratio (Still Image) 3264 x 1840
2560 x 1440
1920 x 1080
Motion Image (4:3 Aspect Ratio) 640 x 480, 320 x 240
30 fps, 10fps
Motion Image (16:9 Aspect Ratio) 848 x 480 pixels - 30 fps, 10 fps
CONVENIENCE FEATURES .
Burst Shooting Mode Full-Resolution Image, 3 frames/sec Max. 7 images (Standard Mode), Max 4 images (Fine Mode) High-speed Burst Mode: approx. 10 frames/sec (recorded in 2M for 4:3, 2.5M for 3:2, 2M for 16:9)
Unlimited Consecutive Shooting 2 Yes
Intelligent Exposure No
Digital Red Eye Correction No
Easy Zoom/Zoom Resume/Motion Zoom Yes/No/No
Still Image Recording with Audio No
Audio Dubbing No
Real-time Histograms No
Composition Guide Lines Yes (2 patterns)
Built-in Memory approx. 27MB
Scene Mode Help Screen Yes
Auto Angle Detection Yes
Flip Animation No
Travel Date/World Time Yes/Yes
Title Edit Yes
Text Stamp/Date Stamp Yes/Yes
STANDARD FEATURES .
Built-in Flash Type/Mode Auto, Auto/Red-eye Reduction, Forced On, Forced Off
0.6 - 6.3m (Wide/ISO Auto), 0.3 - 3.1m (Tele/ISO Auto)
External Flash No
Viewfinder No
LCD Monitor 2.5" Diagonal Polycrystalline TFT LCD Display (230K dots)
Field of View : approx. 100%
AUTO Power LCD mode, Power LCD mode, High angle mode
Playback Mode 30 & 12-thumbnail display, Calendar Display, Zoomed Playback (16x max.), Playback of Favorite Pictures, Category Playback, Slide Show, Image Rotation, Resizing, Trimming, Protection, Aspect Conv. DPOF Print Setting
OSD Language English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Japanese
Recording Media Built-in Memory
SD Memory Card
SDHC Memory Card
MultiMediaCard
Microphone Yes
Speaker Yes
Interface DC Input, A/V Output (NTSC/PAL), USB
Direct Print PictBridge
Color Silver
Power Supply Lithium-ion Battery Pack (3.6V, 1000 mAh)(Included)
AC Adaptor (Input: 110-240V AC)(Optional)
Battery Life 3 Up to 320 pictures (CIPA Standard)
ACCESSORIES .
Included Software PhotofunStudio -viewer-, ArcSoft® MediaImpression™, ArcSoft® Panorama Maker™, QuickTime, Adobe Reader, USB Driver
Standard Accessories Battery Charger, Battery Pack, Battery Carrying Case, AC, AV & USB Cables, Strap, CD-ROM
SPECIFICATIONS .
Dimensions (H x W x D) 2.10'' x 3.74'' x 0.89''
Weight 0.26 lbs

Footnotes

1   As digital magnification increases, resolution significantly decreases.

2   Number of shots may vary depending on memory card size, battery power, picture size, and compression. The consecutive shooting speed varies depending on the memory card or the built-in memory.

3   Shooting conditions: 73.4°F with 50% humidity;LCD On; Using an SD Memory Card; Starting to shoot 30 seconds after turning on the power; Shooting once every 30 seconds with the flash in full operation for every other shot; Changing the zoom setting from telephoto to wide, or wide to telephoto, for each shot; Temporarily turning the power off after each 10 shots (long enough to lower the battery temperature. For DMC-LC1: Shooting once every 30 seconds, flash in operation for every shot, 77°F(25°C) ambient temperature.

(Specifications as provided by the manufacturer.)




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