Anyone Used A Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3? I’m Considering Buying One

For about the past month, I had been planning on buying the new Canon PowerShot G11. However someone on the DPReview.com forums recommend the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3 instead:

Comparing it to the G11 I have noted down the following pros and cons:

LX3 PROs

1) better wide angle (24mm instead of 28mm);
2) brighter lenses (F2.0 – F2.8 instead of F2.8 – F4.5)
3) smaller;
4) 110g lighter;
5) about 100$ cheaper; (doesn’t seem to be the case)

7) besides the 4:3 and 16:9 it supports the 3:2 image ratio (the G11 supports 4:3 and 16:9 only);

8) better image quality compared to the G10 (I am looking forward to see a comparison with the G11).

LX3 CONS

1) doesn’t have a swivel LCD;
2) has a short zoom range (2.5x instead of 5x)
3) doesn’t have a viewfinder.

Here you can see a detailed side by side comparison:

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/compare_post.asp?method=sidebyside&cameras=canon_g11%2Cpanasonic_dmclx3&show=all

I think I’m starting to agree with them. The 720p video is a big plus (I plan on mostly doing images but I do video from time to time) as is the other stuff.

Anyone have first hand knowledge of the LX3 and would care to provide an opinion on it? Are you happy with it? Is it’s 2.5x optical zoom a problem? This would be my only camera (I don’t own a DSLR nor do I plan on getting one).

UPDATE: I ended up getting the Canon PowerShot G11 as their interfaces are just plain awesome, the swivel screen is handy, and the additional zoom is great. For video, I picked up a Flip Mino HD so I can take 720p video. Yes, I have to carry around two devices, but I have big pockets. :)

5 thoughts on “Anyone Used A Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3? I’m Considering Buying One

  1. Nope, I haven’t bought anything yet. I’m holding off until I actually need a good camera (i.e. my next vacation trip somewhere). Until then the basic point and shoot I have will do. :)

    Thanks for the link.

  2. I tested the LX3 in comparison with four other P&S cams on a month-long magazine assignment trip to Alaska during the 2009 summer. It’s a superb camera, far superior to the Canon, Pentax, Sony and Nikons I also had. FYI, the LX3 is the same camera as the Leica D-Lux 4(? not sure of the number suffix). Some people claim the Leica has a different color engine, but I couldn’t find any differrence in test shots taken at an NYC camera store.

    For one, it has better low light capabilities, which is the weakness of ALL P&S cameras. the sensor is augmented by its f 2.0 lens, which allows a good two stops of shutter speed over most competitors. Second, the 24mm equivalent coverage of the lens is very good for journalism. P&S telephotos all suck. They’re muddy-looking, and too slow to allow effective shutter speeds or freeze subject motion. You’re better off sticking with wide angle coverage in small cameras. Lastly, it follows action reasonably well, although it’s no SLR.

    Far better IMO, than even the Canons, which I found to be rather overrated. There’s a serious Canon fanboy phenomenon. It’s worth testing on your own.

    Now (Jan 2010) the new Sonys might be a better choice, given their new low-light sensors. But I’d still take a hard look at the Panasonics.

    Luck with the choice. P&S cams are finally becoming serious tools.

    • Thanks for your comment. :)

      I actually ended up getting a Canon G11 last month as I’m not a professional photographer, but am looking for something a lot better than a little P&S. I have to say I’m quite happy with it. The macro ability of it is rediculous (about a quarter to a half inch from the end of the lens is perfectly in focus) and on the other end of the scale, having 5x zoom allows me to take pictures of something I can’t get closer to.

      I’ve had two Canons before and both had excellent menu systems and the G11 is no different — incredibly easy to change any of the settings.

      640×480 video sucks, but I lucked out and managed to get a Flip Mino HD as a gift so that covers me for 720p video.

      In short, the LX3 sounds like an awesome camera, but the G11 is more well rounded and I feel works better if you don’t also own a DSLR (which I don’t). :)

  3. I think that they’re muddy-looking, and too slow to allow effective shutter speeds or freeze subject motion. You’re better off sticking with wide angle coverage in small cameras. Lastly, it follows action reasonably well, although it’s no SLR.

    Lumix Reviews

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