Steve's Digicams - Breaking News - Panasonic 02/08/2005 Press Releases
Press Release - February 8, 2005
Panasonic Introduces New Lumix Digital Cameras With 12X Optical Zoom And Mega O.I.S.
SECAUCUS, NJ (February 8, 2005) - Panasonic introduces two new Lumix digital still cameras with 12x optical zoom and MEGA O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer). Models DMC-FZ5 and DMC-FZ4 offer 5.0-megapixel and 4.0-megapixel resolution, respectively, and incorporate a newly developed 12x optical zoom equivalent to 36mm to 432mm (DMC-FZ5) / 35mm to 420mm (DMC-FZ4) on a 35mm film camera lens. The remarkable 12x optical zoom combined with 4x digital zoom magnifies images by as much as 48x, enabling users to capture images of subjects at longer distances. Both cameras feature a high-performance LEICA DC VARIO-ELMARIT lens.
Panasonic first introduced the MEGA Optical Image Stabilizer with its DMC-FZ1 digital still camera in 2003; and, in 2004, was the first to market a digital camera with 12x zoom and MEGA O.I.S. Since then, MEGA Optical Image Stabilizer has been an indispensable and key feature in the companyís Lumix line.
Panasonicís MEGA Optical Image Stabilizer automatically detects and corrects for hand movement, providing precise compensation with no image quality degradation. This technology is especially appreciated when taking telephoto shots or when using slow shutter speeds to capture the atmosphere in dimly lit scenes.
"Panasonicís Optical Image Stabilizer technology dramatically enhances the potential for capturing great shots by photographers at all skill levels," said Monica Helmer, Marketing Manager for Panasonicís Optical Group. "Itís especially useful with these small, lightweight cameras, and for shooting while zooming, in macro mode, at night or low-light situations, indoors, in moving vehicles, and in spontaneous shooting situations."
Panasonicís LSI Venus Engine II handles image processing, LCD functions, and writing to the memory card simultaneously, making these cameras incredibly responsive with an industry-leading release time lag of 0.008 seconds minimum for the DMC-FZ5 and 0.006 seconds minimum for the DMC-FZ4; and shutter interval of approx. 0.4 seconds* minimum for the DMC-FZ5 and 0.3 seconds* minimum for the DMC- FZ4. The LSI also enables lightning-fast consecutive shooting capability, capturing sequential shots at a rate of 3 frames (DMC-FZ5) or 4 frames (DMC-FZ4) per second at full resolution. An unlimited** consecutive shooting function allows the user to take photos in succession until the memory card is full. The LSI also improves horizontal, vertical and diagonal resolution.
Auto angle detection, a new feature, records whether an image was taken horizontally or vertically and displays it accordingly, whether viewed on the cameraís LCD or on a connected TV.
Other features include fast AF; selectable manual functions (such as aperture- priority AE, shutter-priority AE and manual exposure); a Simple Mode, in which most settings are made automatically; real-time histogram; color viewfinder; built-in flash, and more.
Model availability and suggested retail pricing:
DMC-FZ5 April 2005 .95
About Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company
Based in Secaucus, N.J., Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company is a Division of Panasonic Corporation of North America, the principal North American subsidiary of Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Ltd. (NYSE: MC) and the hub of Panasonic's U.S. marketing, sales, service and R&D operations. Information about Panasonic products is available at www.panasonic.com. Additional company information for journalists is available at www.panasonic.com/pressroom or through the companyís toll-free fax- back system at 888-734-7490.
* Consecutive shooting speed varies depending on the memory card or built-in memory. The number of recordable picture depends on the memory card and built-in memory size, battery life, picture size and compression.
** Manufacturerís suggested retail price. All prices are in U.S. dollars.