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Panasonic DMC-ZX3

Dennis Hissink
PMA 2010 Report
Sunday 31st, January 2010
Posted by: Dennis Hissink

Panasonic introduces the Lumix DMC-ZX3 camera featuring powerful zoom with a remarkably slim and compact body. Newly added is an AVCHD Lite movie recording function to make the versatile camera even truly “hybrid”. The new image processing technology “Intelligent Resolution” is incorporated in the Venus Engine HD II for ZX3. By detecting the signals whether they are at edges of the subjects, they compose detailed texture or just a soft gradation first and give appropriate enhancement to the edges and textured areas respectively. Unlike the uniform enhancement of sharpness, it is possible to perform the optimum signal processing to give a whole image outstandingly natural clearness with fine detail.

Panasonic DMC-ZX3

Panasonic DMC-ZX3 camera features
The iA mode - a hallmark of Lumix cameras - is also available in movie mode. It automatically selects the most suitable Scene mode and helps to correct handshake, focus and brightness problems - making the iA mode your one-stop solution to capture beautiful photos and movies. The powerful 8x optical zoom lens on the Panasonic Lumix ZX3 makes it easy to pull in subjects from far away a step closer compared to the conventional stylish point-and-shoot cameras. For an added boost, zoom power can be increased to 10x with the Intelligent Zoom function taking advantage of the Intelligent Resolution technology maintaining the picture quality even combining a digital zoom. The 25mm ultra wide-angle feature is ideal for both broad landscapes and tight indoor shots, letting photographers capture a wider view. The 14.1-megapixel high resolution CCD reproduce the detailed images corner to corner and affordable with trimming or even more powerful Extra Optical Zoom by using the center part of it.

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Panasonic DMC-ZX3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZX3 equipped with a 2.7" LCD monitor
Notably the sonic speed AF in the Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZX3 features its speed at the industry's fastest level. Combined with a high-speed start-up, this gives the Panasonic ZX3 an ultra fast response that helps to catch even the most fleeting photo opportunities. The 2.7-inch large Intelligent LCD offers dynamic and clear view out of its small body. The battery life is also as powerful as approx. 330 pictures shooting thanks to the highly energy efficient image processing LSI, the Venus Engine HD II. With high-quality aluminum texture which resists fingerprints and soiling, the slim, compact, pocket-fitting size of Panasonic DMC-ZX3 is packed with a host of functions for both photos and movies to be an ideal partner for traveling or for everyday snapshots.

Panasonic DMC-ZX3 features a Leica DC Vario-Elmar lens
The Panasonic DMC-ZX3 features a 25mm ultra wide-angle Leica DC Vario-Elmar lens and powerful 8x optical zoom (equivalent to 25-200mm on a 35mm camera) together with a 14.1-megapixel high resolution CCD into a compact body. The lens unit comprises of 9 elements in 7 groups, including 4 aspherical lenses with 6 spherical surfaces. Notably, Panasonic achieved the incorporation of 0.3mm super thin aspherical lens and 0.3mm spherical lens, both mold and mass production are difficult, into the lens unit. This makes it possible to fit the 25-200mm high performance lens in an astonishingly slim and compact body. Thanks to the newly incorporated Intelligent Resolution technology, the Intelligent Zoom is available with the Panasonic Lumix ZX3 which extends the zoom ratio by approx.1.3x maintaining the picture quality even using a digital zoom. This means the 8x optical can virtually extend to 10x equivalent. Furthermore, the Extra Optical Zoom function that extends zoom power to 16.9x (at 3-megapixel resolution) by using the center part of the high resolution CCD to bring subjects even closer.

Panasonic DMC-ZX3

Panasonic DMC-ZX3 incorporates the Venus Engine HD II
The high-speed, high-performance Venus Engine HD has been re-engineered to compile the new image processing technology “Intelligent Resolution”. It enables the recording of beautiful photo and high-definition movie with higher quality signal processing. With the Intelligent Resolution technology, 3 areas -outlines, detailed texture areas and soft gradation areas are automatically detected. The outline parts are enhanced effectively to give edges more clearness while giving a moderate accentuation to the texture areas to look more finely detailed. To the soft gradation part, superior noise reduction process of the Venus Engine HD II is applied to make it smoother. Apart from the uniform enhancement of sharpness, the innovative technology Intelligent Resolution precisely performs signal processing pixel by pixel in the most effective way for it. As a result, images are naturally clear and crisp in both photo and movie recording.

Panasonic DMC-ZX3

Panasonic Lumix ZX3 features Intelligent Resolution technology
The Intelligent Resolution technology also realizes Intelligent Zoom, which virtually extends the optical zoom ratio to its 1.3x equivalent maintaining the picture quality even combining the digital zoom. Details of a image in high sensitivity recording tend to be lost in the noise reduction process, however, the Intelligent Resolution works to keep them. At the same time, the multi-task image-processing engine Venus Engine HD II supports a super-fast response time. The shutter release time lag is as short as approx. 0.005 second and the camera's quick response makes it easier to capture sudden, spur-of-the-moment photo opportunities together with the Sonic Speed AF (Auto Focus) that lets you lock on the subject minimum in approx. 0.26 (wide-end) / 0.31 (tele-end) second and the short startup time of approx. 1.1 second. The high performance Venus Engine HD II is also more energy efficient compared with the conventional Venus Engine HD II, extending the battery life up to 330 shots (CIPA) per a single charge.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZX3 accessories
The optional marine case (DMW-MCZX3) is available for underwater photography even to 40m taking advantage of 25mm to 200mm wide shooting range. In addition to the conventional SD/SDHC Memory Card, the Lumix DMC-ZX3 accepts next-generation SD format SDXC (SD eXtended Capacity), that features high potential in both capacity and data transfer speed. The DMC-ZX3 is compatible with Windows 7.

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The PMA show, or Photo Marketing Association, continues its yearly tradition of maintaining a network of photo imaging as well as the experience and know-how of the industry. The PMA represents 20,000 members from over 100 countries, who are all active within the imaging industry. As a reflection of the changes in the market, the PMA organization has also changed and has become more diverse. Nowadays, the member group consists of representatives coming from photo retail, manufacturers, commercial photo labs, professional sports and news photography, in addition to small album print suppliers and photo processing centers. The PMA 2012 Trade show focuses on an industry which is heavily affected by the unstable situation of the global financial economy. However, whether the latter will also stand in the way of the innovation and product introductions, remains to be revealed by the PMA International Convention & Trade Show in Anaheim Convention Center (California, US).