While Canon are trying to keep the attention of indie filmmakers/videographers/video shooters etcetera with the outdated 1080p/60fps video mode of Canon 7D Mark II, Sony and Panasonic are releasing a brand new 4K camera almost every week now.
Recently, Samsung also have joined the party with their brand new mirrorless digital camera NX1.
Again, Panasonic just released another 4k camera – the LX100. There is not surprise to anyone that the camera shoots 4K video. Furthermore, it can easily fit into your pocket as well. The Panasonic LX100 is capable of recording 24fps and 30fps UHD video for up to 15 minutes on a UHS-I Speed Class 3 SD Card. It can also do full 1080p at 60fps in MP4 or AVCHD for up to 29 minutes and 59 seconds.
Also, there is a built ability in to the camera to extract 8MP stills from the 4K footage without the need for any additional software thanks to the “4K Photo Mode“.
I was surprised to know that a such tiny, consumer-oriented camera features full manual control over zoom, focus, aperture, shutter speed and a multi-aspect ratio selector all at the touch of your finger tips. A dedicated button on the top of the camera’s body lets you instantly start recording videos while shooting photos, meaning you can always capture the moment as it happens.
The LX-100 is equipped with a Micro Four Thirds sized 16.8MP sensor covered by a built-in Leica designed fast zoom lens that starts at a 35mm-equivalent 24mm f/1.7 and reaches to a 75mm f/2.8.
The camera features also a Light Speed AF
, a contrast-detection AF system, which uses Depth from Defocus
technology to greatly reduce focus time. It instantly calculates the distance to subject by evaluating two separate images with different sharpness levels. The result is a high-speed AF in approximately 0.14 seconds.
Panasonic’s class leading iOS and Android app, the Panasonic Image App, is here again. You can use it to set focus, shoot photos or video, instantly upload to social media sites, and tag your photos with the GPS log from your smart phone or tablet. NFC support is built-in to allow for an instant sync by touching those smart phone devices to the camera. An external flash with a guide number rating of 23′ (7 m) at 100 is included.
The Pansonic LX100 is expected to hit the shelves in the early November 2014. As of now, it is availble for pre-order at B&H for $899 only.
It is clear that the 4K acquisition format has been widely adopted by the majority of camera manufacturers already, even as part of consumer line-up of their products. This is one of the major trends of 2014 as I’m sure we’ll continue to see more and more companies accepting it as a standard from now on.
It is still a mystery why Canon, who started the DSLR revolution 6 years ago, are standing aside from this route and turn their consumer/pro-sumer products into obsolete and outdated pieces of plastic. I’m sure sooner or later we’ll get the answer. I only hope that it won’t be too late for them.