By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Secaucus, N.J. — Headed into Photokina week in Cologne, Germany, Panasonic formally introduced Monday the Lumix DMC-GH3 Micro Four Thirds mirrorless compact system camera, with more advanced pro-level capabilities.
“This is more than just another camera, it is a whole new area for Panasonic,” said Stefan Guelpen, Panasonic Lumix sales and marketing VP. “This new camera is targeted at professional photographers [and] videographers. With the evolution of smartphones, today, the average consumer is a lot more creative than ever before, and that’s a significant change in the mindset of camera manufacturers, because we always focus on taking better pictures but never really focused on letting consumer be creative with these pictures.”
The GH3, which is expected to ship before the holidays at a price to be announced later, has a slightly larger design than some other G-series Micro Four Thirds models, and includes an extensively redesigned button and dial layout from the GH2.
It packs a 16-megapixel Live MOS sensor, an updated three-core Venus Engine 7 FHD image processor, low pass filter, splash- and dust-resistant magnesium-alloy body, FullHD 1080/60p/50p with 30p/25p option video recording and the ability to shoot bit rates of 50Mbps in IPB and 72-80Mbps in All-I compression modes. It also offers support for H.264/MOV/MPEG 4 compression, timecode support in MOV(H.264) and AVCHD formats, slow movie extension (40 and 50 percent slow motion) and a 3-inch 614,000-dot OLED touchscreen display.
Other features include 6fps continuous shooting, an ISO range from 100 to 12,800 (extended range 125 to 25,600), a new high-speed autofocus system, HDMI through monitoring, integrated stereo microphone, optional external battery grip, wireless external flash support and Wi-Fi/DLNA connectivity with remote control capability.
The camera also includes a 1.7-megapixel OLED electronic viewfinder.
Among a host of touchscreen activated creative effects built into the camera include auto-tracking focus on a subject, setting a focus point anywhere in the frame and one-point color effects.
Also announced was a Lumix G X Vario 35-100mm F2.8 zoom lens (70-200mm, 35mm equivalent) that features a constant F2.8 aperture. The lens includes an inner focusing mechanism that does not extend during zooming. It adds a proprietary Nano Surface Coating for reduced flare and ghosting effects, and includes splash- and dust-resistant design.
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