Panasonic DMC-FX48 Review
MIAMI, FL (January 27, 2009) - Panasonic today expanded its popular LUMIX FX digital cameras series with the introduction of the 12.1-megapixel DMC-FX48, which features a 25mm ultra-wide-angle LEICA DC lens and a powerful 5x optical zoom (equivalent to 25mm to 125mm on a 35mm film camera), yet its slim profile makes it convenient to slip into a pocket. With a 25mm ultra-wide-angle lens and 5x optical zoom, users can capture nearly double the viewing space at the same shooting distance compared to standard 35mm cameras, thus the FX48 can photograph images with great width and depth. The FX48 also features Face Recognition, a new technology to Panasonic's proprietary advanced iA (Intelligent Auto) mode.
"With Panasonic's acclaimed FX-Series, we are pursuing high photo quality in a camera body that is sophisticated, easy-to-carry and intuitive to use," said David Briganti, National Marketing Manager, Imaging, Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company. "With features like Face Recognition and High Definition video capability, we are packing advanced and powerful features into a small, attractive camera that can easily be carried in a pocket or purse."
The FX48 features iA mode, a system of technologies, such as MEGA O.I.S., Intelligent ISO Control, Face Detection, Auto Focus (AF) tracking*1, Intelligent Exposure and Intelligent Scene Selector, that engage automatically, without the user having to adjust any settings. New in 2009, Panasonic's advanced iA adds Face Recognition, a feature that recognizes individual faces, making it a "personal verification system" in the digital camera. With the Face Recognition feature, a user can give AF and auto exposure priority to a single person in a group, ensuring that a particular person's face will be focused and exposed beautifully.
With Face Recognition, when a familiar face is recorded several times, the camera will prompt the users to register the face. Once registered, if the familiar face appears in the frame again, the camera will display the name specified for that person and prioritize focus and exposure so that the registered face is bright and sharply focused*2. During registration, the user can change the icon that indicates when the registered subject is in focus and the person's age can also be registered. When children less than three years-old are registered, the camera will automatically switch to the Baby scene mode when the child is in the frame. Furthermore, in playback, users can choose to display only photos that contain a specific registered face using Category Playback, so organizing and archiving photos by person becomes much easier.
Panasonic's newly developed Venus Engine V integrates these advanced functions and controls the camera's operation with high speed, high performance, and low-power consumption. Beyond the power of the conventional imaging engine, the Venus Engine V has twin CPUs to boast approximately 2.4x processing capability. The Venus Engine V improves its energy efficiency by 16%, when compared to the Venus Engine IV, thus extending the battery life to 350 pictures (CIPA).
The DMC-FX48 can also record High Definition (1280 x 720p) motion images at 30 fps. And, using the DMW-HDC2 component cable (optional accessories), the video can output directly to a television, such as a Panasonic VIERA HDTV, for easy playback.
Other features of the Panasonic LUMIX DMC-FX48 include:
- A bright 2.5-inch, 230,000-dot resolution Intelligent LCD that provides high resolution and a wide viewing angle.
- New Panorama Assist scene mode allows users to shoot a number of consistent photos, either vertically or horizontally, by aligning them according to a guide that overlaps the screen. Then using those photos and the bundled PanoramaMaker software, users can create dramatic panoramic images.
- High-Speed Burst (Speed Priority) that fires off approx. 10 shots per second*3.
- Macro Zoom function lets users pull subjects even closer to capture dramatic close-up shots by using the 3x digital zoom in the wide-angle.
- Bundled PHOTOfunSTUDIO 3.0 software that features a Face Recognition function that recognizes the faces in photos stored on the computer, allowing the user to easily sort files by the people photographed. Using the software, motion pictures can also be uploaded directly to YouTube.
The DMC-FX48 will be available in silver and black models starting in April 2009 for a suggested retail price of $349.95. For more information, please visit www.panasonic.com/lumix.
*1 Dynamic tracking function may fail to lock, lose the subject in AF Tracking, or track different subject depending on the recording conditions.
*2 Depending on background and facial expression, camera may not recognize a registered person. For family members with similar facial features, camera may not correctly identify the intended subject.
*3 3-megapixel (4:3), 2.5-megapixel (3:2), 2-megapixel (16:9) recording. (10fps in Speed Priority mode / 6fps in Picture Priority mode)
*Leica is a registered trademark of Leica Microsystems IR GmbH.
*The LEICA DC VARIO-ELMARIT 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.
*YouTube is a trademark of Google Inc.
*All other company and product names are trademarks of their respective corporations.
*This unit is compatible with both SD Memory cards and SDHC 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 a SDHC Memory card on another device, be sure to read the operating instructions for that device).
*When you set the picture quality to HD, WVGA or VGA, we recommend using a high-speed card with "10MB/s" or greater displayed on the package.
*Continuous recording exceeding 2GB is not possible when recording motion JPEG. Remaining time for continuous recording is displayed on the screen.
*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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