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Panasonic Bows DigiCam with 12x Zoom

Secaucus, N.J. — Panasonic took aim at the higher end of the digital camera market today with the introduction of the industry’s first 4-megapixel, 12x optical zoom model.

The new DMC-FZ10 sports a F2.8 large-aperture Leica DC Vario-Elmarit lens and Panasonic’s Mega O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) to enhance the camera’s telephoto zoom capabilities. Unlike digital image stabilization systems, the O.I.S. reduces jitter by using motion sensors that detect hand movements and integrally links the lens control to the motion of the camera.

The DMC-FZ10’s new histogram feature functions like a digital light meter, providing a graphic representation of the luminance level of the pixels composing an image. It is displayed on the camera’s 2-inch LCD screen.

For shooting action, the FZ10’s Mega Burst mode captures still images at 4 frames per second. The camera can also record QuickTime movies with sound at 320 by 240 resolution at 30 or 10-frames-per-second.

The camera features manual focus, aperture, shutter and exposure functions, program AE; continuous AF, spot AF switching and AF lock; digital automatic pop-up flash and multiple flash modes. It will be bundled with a protective lens hood, rechargeable battery pack and charger and a 16MB SD card.

The DMC-FZ10 will ship in November for a suggested retail price of $599.00.