Panasonic has just announced the LX100 II. A compact highly integrated micro 4/3 sensor size, fixed zoom lens camera with pro features and 4K video recording.
Almost three years ago we reviewed the Panasonic LX100 (See Johnnie’s review here) and hopefully Panasonic took the time to improve on at least some of the shortcomings of the original model. Granted, Johnnie reviewed the camera from a video perspective, and it may well be a much better photo camera but after all we’re mostly concerned with video performance here.
Before you get too excited, this is just an announcement, we don’t have a camera to review yet, but we will be reviewing the LX100 II in due course.
A Quick Look At The Panasonic LX100 II
Let’s cover the most important aspects of the new Panasonic LX100 II.
Just like it’s predecessor, this is an all in one fixed lens micro 4/3″ compact camera. However, the resolution of the LX100 II’s new multi aspect ratio sensor jumps to a total 21.77 megapixels, giving 17 megapixels in 4:3 mode. The high pixel count ensures sufficient image resolution for photos in 4:3, 3:2, 1:1 and 16:9. It should also ensure the same field of view can be maintained in video regardless of the selected aspect ratio, but these details are still to be confirmed.
The new sensor is mated to a fixed Leica DC Vario-Summilux lens, offering a 24 – 75mm (35mm equivalent) focal length and fast aperture of f/1.7 – f/2.8. The lens features Power O.I.S. image stabilisation.
A new 3 inch rear LCD touchscreen gives you flexibility when it comes to how you want to compose your images. This is in addition to a new 2764k-dot live view finder offering 100% field of view and 0.7x magnification.
One welcome new feature is the addition of USB charging, which allows convenient quick battery top ups while on the move.
Low Light and Auto Focus
The new sensor promises an improved signal to noise ratio, and improved low light performance up to ISO 25,600. The latest Venus engine should mean excellent color rendition and high quality image processing.
Auto focus speed is one of the shortcomings Johnnie pointed out in his review of the LX100, and hopefully this has been improved as Panasonic promise 0.10 sec high speed auto focus in the LX100 II.
4K Photo from Video
The Panasonic LX100 II allows you to pull 8 megapixel 4K stills from 30fps 4K video directly in camera.
Panasonic have made mention of some interesting photo features that I don’t really get, but certainly sound interesting, if not a bit gimmicky. Post Focus and Focus Stacking have been added, plus a light composition mode, that can be used for firework and night scenery shots. Maybe these are of interest to the night photographers out there. There is also a new monochrome photo mode with grain. To be honest these are all things I’d imagine are better done with more control to photos in post, but there it is in camera if that’s your thing.
The Panasonic LX100 II seems to offer some promising improvements over the original LX100, but really this will only become apparent once we review the camera. I am not sure an overall sensor resolution increase makes much difference to the 4K video modes, but one thing that did stick out to me in Johnnie’s review of the LX100 is the mention of rolling shutter and moiré. So any improvement to these issues would obviously be welcome.
If the original LX100 was close, yet still so far away, it will be interesting to see if the LX100 II has come any closer.
The review should reveal all, stay tuned for that.
What are your initial thoughts of the Panasonic LX100 II? Have you used the LX100? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.