Panasonic says its Lumix GF2 is 20 percent smaller and seven percent lighter than the GF1, quite a feat since the GF1 is one of the smallest Micro Four Thirds cameras going. It also joins the flagship GH2 in being compatible with the Lumix Micro Four Thirds 3D lens.
The Lumix DMC-GF2 (its full official name) also joins a number of other Panasonic cameras in offering a touch-screen interface. The camera has a relatively huge three-inch LCD with fine resolution (460K dots) that dominates the back. Touch control is not just for menu selection. It extends to camera operations too, such as touching the screen to set an autofocus point, or to actually fire the shutter. There is also an Intelligent Scene Selector mode, which sets a scene mode according to what you touch onscreen: touching a face invokes portrait mode, while touching the background invokes landscape scenery mode, for example.
Earlier this year Panasonic announced a Lumix G 12.5mm / F12 3D lens with a Micro Four Thirds mount. Mount this lens and the GF2 becomes a 3D camera.
Panasonic has been a frontrunner in implementing video in still cams, and the GF2 carries that reputation forward by offering 1920 x 1080 video at 60i (or 1280 x 720 at 60p) in AVCHD, which includes Dolby Digital stereo sound.
Panasonic says the GF2’s Venus Engine FHD uses Intelligent Resolution technology, which detects three image characteristics — outlines, detailed textures and gradations — and applies different enhancements to each.
The DMC-GF2 is slated for shipment in February 2011. Prices haven’t been set yet, but the camera will be available with a 14-42mm zoom lens (body available in red or black) or a 14mm F/2.5 lens (body available in red, black or white).
Specification Highlights: Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2
- Sensor: 12.1 megapixel Live MOS
- Memory Card Type: SD, SDHC or SDXC
- LCD: 3-inch, 460K dots, touch control enabled
- Image processor: Venus Engine FHD
- Video: AVCHD (1920 x 1080 at 60i or 1280 x 720 at 60p); Motion JPEG (1280 x 720 HD, QVGA, VGA and WVGA)
- Audio: Dolby Digital stereo
- Autofocus: Contrast-detect with multiple AF modes
- Exposure modes: P/A/S/M, plus 17 scene modes plus My Color mode
- Dust control: sensor shake
- Image stabilization: lens-based, not incorporated into body
- Dimensions/Weight: n/a
- Available: February 2011
- Price: n/a