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Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX100 -- Image courtesy LetsGoDigital

Casio EXILIM Zoom EX-Z1200 -- Image courtesy Digital Photography Review
The megapixel wars continue to heat up in the digital camera world

If there's one thing that we can always expect in the realm of digital cameras, it's the ever-increasing megapixel count. Panasonic and Casio are aiming to please those obsessed with high megapixel cameras with the Lumix DMC-FX100 and EXILIM Zoom EX-Z1200 respectively.

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX100 features a 12.2MP image sensor and a 3.6x (28-100mm) zoom lens. As is the case with most new high-end digital cameras released today, the DMC-FX100 features onboard image stabilization.

Thanks to its Venus Engine III image processor, the DMC-FX100 provides a maximum ISO of 6400 and features a High-Speed Burst shooting mode which allows the camera to capture 8 images per second. The DMC-FX100 can also capture images in a widescreen 16:9 format in 1920x1080 and 1280x720 resolutions. The camera is also capable of capturing VGA and WVGA movies at 30FPS and WXGA movies at 15FPS.

Not to be outdone, Casio has a 12.1MP digital camera of its own. The Casio EXILIM Zoom EX-Z1200 features a 3x optical zoom lens, image stabilization and a 2.8" LCD screen. The EX-Z1200's onboard EXILIM Engine 2.0 image processor handles face detection and auto tracking to enable clear captures.

Panasonic and Casio haven't yet announced pricing or availability dates for the Lumix DMC-FX100 and EXILIM Zoom EX-Z1200.



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Imagine
By spluurfg on 5/21/2007 8:24:30 AM , Rating: 4
Imagine how great these cameras would be if they weren't stuffed to the gills with megapixels... if they were, say, 6-8mp and 1/1.8" sensors, they would probably have good ISO performance. Not only this, but if the processor can manage 8fps at 12mp, it could probably have a higher framerate or longer sustained burst. Personally, being able to print at 12" is already enough for me -- I'll take the better image quality and lower noise any day.

Panasonic couldn't get very good noise reduction on their 8mp 1/1.65" sensor LX1... I'd worry about NR/noise on these...




RE: Imagine
By Ralph The Magician on 5/21/2007 8:30:14 AM , Rating: 2
No kidding. Seriously, they just need to start over. Start over at 4MP and start using larger/better sensors so that you can actually get an image that isn't filled to the gills with noise. It's getting ridiculous.


RE: Imagine
By KorruptioN on 5/21/2007 8:36:56 AM , Rating: 3
Sure it can do ISO6400, but is it actually useful? The new Canon 1DMkIII can do ISO6400, with usable results!

Here's a good read on P&S noise performance, easy enough for most people to understand: http://www.dpreview.com/articles/compactcamerahigh...


RE: Imagine
By NagoyaX on 5/21/2007 10:39:17 AM , Rating: 2
you guys are right, I hate this marketing style, which makes people think that the more MP the better the Cam. I bet that even at relativly low ISO (around 400) most pic will stink. Panasonic should work on their noise problem before pumping out a higher MP cam...

I would never recommend any of these cam to customers. Heck i dont even recommend many 10MP cam to customers.


RE: Imagine
By megastore on 5/23/2007 1:06:33 AM , Rating: 2
Reminds me of Intel's Clock Speed war... higher = better, which clearly was not the case.


RE: Imagine
By Emily on 5/21/2007 1:26:31 PM , Rating: 3
Sadly, Megapixels sell better than larger sensors for a large proportion (most?) of the public those cameras are marketed towards.


Confused now
By GoatMonkey on 5/21/2007 10:19:10 AM , Rating: 1
I have a Panasonic DMC-FX01, and the LCD broke last weekend. I was about to get a Panasonic DMC-TZ3 to replace it, but now I'm not sure. I think the lens of the TZ3 may be better than this FX100 though.




RE: Confused now
By digitalzen on 5/21/2007 9:19:34 PM , Rating: 2
If you want good glass and good pics, stick with the two Fujis mentioned, or with the S6000fd, which has the same sensor and a manually-operated zoom like a real camera. (There's also a $50 rebate currently being offered by some dealers.)

With modern laser-cut lenses, you practically need an optical lab to tell the differences among anything but bottom of the line glass. Lens quality is pretty much a myth, if all you want is good photos. If you're an equipment geek, then all is lost anyway.


RE: Confused now
By GoatMonkey on 5/22/2007 6:38:40 AM , Rating: 2
I actually really liked the Panasonic that I had. People talk about noise, but I haven't seen any noise in any of my pictures. I get constant compliments on the picture quality, and on how cool the big LCD is actually. I'll still have a look around at the other ones you mentioned though, and read some reviews.


I have an FX9
By drunkenmastermind on 5/21/2007 9:15:34 AM , Rating: 2
And the picture quality is S!#t. Noise anyone? anyone want some noise?

My fuji compact with 4.1 mp sensor from five years back was much better.

With the market flooded with digital cameras you think they would be doing their best to separate themselves from the competition.

What I would like is the quality/pro feel of an DSLR squashed into a small unit.

That would rock!




RE: I have an FX9
By themadmilkman on 5/21/2007 9:59:51 PM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately, you can't get the quality of an SLR without the size.


Vote with your wallets...
By Suomynona on 5/21/2007 1:42:00 PM , Rating: 2
...and buy Fuji F31fd, before even they lose the high ISO performance where they're already heading to with the new F40 with a lot worse noise artefacts than F30/F31 (but one more megapixel!!1).

The dprewiew's article is so clear on the subject. All the mini-compact cameras suck in any low-light situation (with any movement, and how often we're in a party where everyone stands still?), and they suck a lot, with the exception of Fuji's F30/F31fd (and even F20).

That said, at least the Panasonic one is the first non-Fuji mini-compact to come with larger than 1/2.5" sensor, though indeed even the 1/1.8" Panasonics before have been quite poor, and definitely poorer than Fuji's 1/1.8" SuperCCD of course. The megapixel counts are ridiculous to have any image quality left, but hopefully this means we're at least starting to see larger sensors in more common usage soon.




By EclipsedAurora on 5/21/2007 6:36:54 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
That said, at least the Panasonic one is the first non-Fuji mini-compact to come with larger than 1/2.5" sensor, though indeed even the 1/1.8" Panasonics before have been quite poor, and definitely poorer than Fuji's 1/1.8" SuperCCD of course.


Hang on! Sony's compact DC model DSC-N1, N2 and W200 even larger 1/1.72" CCD. And many review on the web shows DSC-N2 these compact have better noise level than similar price and class Fujitsu and Panasonic.

How come u only know Fuji and Panasonic?


And the name?
By JoeyCrash2 on 5/21/2007 8:48:32 AM , Rating: 2
Lumix? Hopefully pronounced LOO-micks in reference to lumens and not like Lummox, a clumsy or stupid person. Are they intending to call anyone dumb enough to buy these poorly designed cameras an idiot? I hope so. The major digital camera manufacturers really have to figure out another way to quantify and express quality to debunk these phoney high mega-pixel cameras. Meanwhile, the general public who only know megapixels (much like the CPU world and the misleading Megahertz battle) are gettings screwed without realizing it.




Up to ISO 6400, huh?
By zsouthboy on 5/21/2007 12:27:00 PM , Rating: 2
HAHAHAHA

I wonder, if instead of actually taking an image, at that sensitivity, they just write a frame of pixels, using a Random() function.

Oh, and great job on the *me-too* cameras, guys!

That'll sell!




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