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Panasonic Lumix DMC-LC5 digital camera. Courtesy of Panasonic. Panasonic announces Lumix DMC-LC5!
(Monday, September 17, 2001 - 23:02 EDT)

Announcement shows the fruits of Japanese company's cooperation with German camera/optics manufacturer Leica...

Panasonic Japan has today announced two new digital cameras, the Lumix DMC-LC5 and DMC-F7. Mike's a bit overloaded at the minute, but will have details of the DMC-F7 tomorrow. In the meantime we've examined the DMC-LC5, the higher-spec camera which has some pretty interesting features...

The LC5 uses a new 0.57" CCD image sensor, rated at 4.01 megapixels (3.9 megapixels effective), and a Leica-designed DC Vario-Summicron 3x optical zoom lens. The camera features a new LSI engine which is promised to offer good color and sensitivity, as well as multi-tasking of JPEG compression for a speedy 4 frames per second up to 8 frames at full resolution. A hybrid AF system complements contrast-detection autofocusing with an external autofocus sensor, and interestingly the lens coatings double as a low-pass filter.

Specifications for the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LC5 are in our database, and specifications highlights follow:

Specification Highlights - full specifications here
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LC5
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LC5 digital camera. Courtesy of Panasonic.
Model Number: DMC-LC5
Camera Format: Compact
Image Capture
Image Sensor: 4.01 megapixels (3.9 megapixels effective)
Image Resolution: 2240x1680, 1600x1200, 1120x840, 640x480, 320x240
Focal Length (effective): 33 - 100mm (3x optical zoom)
Digital Zoom: Unknown
Auto Focus: Yes (Hybrid, contrast detection and external sensor)
Manual Focus: Yes
Normal Focus Range: 30 cm to Infinity; 12.2 in to Infinity
Macro Focus Range: 6 cm to 50 cm; 2.4 in to 20.4 in
Aperture Range: f/2.0 (wide) / 2.5 (tele) - ???
Optical Viewfinder: Yes (Real Image type)
LCD Viewfinder: Yes (2.5 inch, 200,000 pixel)
ISO Settings: Auto, 100, 200, 400
Shutter Speeds: 8 - 1/1000 second
Exp Adj Range: +/- 2.0EV in 1/4EV steps
Exposure Modes: Auto, Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority, Manual
Internal Flash: Yes
Flash Modes: Unknown
Flash Range Description: 0.1 - 4.5 meters (wide), 0.2 - 3.5 meters (tele)
Ext Flash: Yes (hot shoe)
Image Storage
Flash Memory: Secure Digital
Memory Included: 16MB
File Formats: TIFF, JPEG, QuickTime MotionJPEG
More Information
Weight: 360 g; 12.6 oz
Weight With Batteries? Unknown
Size: 128 x 82 x 63mm; 5.0 x 3.2 x 2.5in
Notes & Features: Complies with PRINT Image Matching, Epson's color-management technology. Price estimate based on conversion of reported Japanese price, 90,000 (US$). Features a Leica DC Vario-Summicron lens designed by Leica Camera AG. Minimum focusing distance is 6cm at wide-angle, 20cm at telephoto. Magnesium alloy chassis is available in silver and black colors. In-camera resizing features creates a 320x240 pixel image suitable for emailing. Monthly production is 2000 units. Bundled with 16MB Secure Digital card, software CD-ROM.
More Photos
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LC5 digital camera. Courtesy of Panasonic.

Source: Panasonic website

Original Source Press Release:

Matsushita Electric(Panasonic) Introduces "LUMIX", a New Line of Digital Still Cameras with Leica Optics

-- Featuring high image quality and networking capability --

OSAKA, Japan -- Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., best known for its Panasonic brand of consumer electronics and digital communications products, today announced the introduction of "LUMIX", its newest line of digital still cameras (DSCs), which have been developed by integrating the world-renowned optical technology of Leica Camera AG of Solms, Germany with the advanced digital AV (audio video) technology of Panasonic. The DMC-F7 and high-end DMC-LC5 DSCs will be launched in the Japanese market on October 27, 2001. Both cameras will be sold at open prices. The new LUMIX line of cameras will also be on display at the Panasonic booth at World PC Expo 2001, to be held from September 19 to 22 at the Makuhari Messe (Nippon Convention Center) in Chiba, east of Tokyo.

Matsushita and Leica recently announced business collaboration in the field of DSCs and these two models are the first fruits of their collaboration. The high-end model, DMC-LC5, has a built-in 3x zoom lens, effective 3.9 mega-pixels (total 4.0-megapixel CCD), and 2.5-inch TFT liquid crystal display with 200,000-pixels, all enhancing ease of use and visibility. The DMC-LC5 also incorporates both manual exposure and manual focus capability, enabling camera enthusiasts to use it as an authentic DSC to fully utilize their shooting techniques. The other model, DMC-F7, has a built-in 2x zoom lens, effective 2.0 mega-pixels (total 2.1-megapixel CCD) and 1.5-inch TFT liquid crystal display. As light as 150 g (without batteries and SD memory cards) in a stylish aluminum alloy body, the DMC-F7 is still able to incorporate a special editing mode that can print the dates as well as transform captured images into black and white, sepia, or negative colors.

The market for DSCs is growing rapidly, with a forecast of approximately 20 million units sold worldwide this year. Market needs are advancing toward DSCs that offer the high image quality of silver halide film cameras plus the ability to interface with digital-networking appliances.

With this background in mind, the new DSC lineup incorporates the LEICA DC VARIO-SUMMICRON Lens (DMC-LC5) as well as the LEICA DC VARIO-ELMARIT Lens (DMC-F7). Moreover, Matsushita's digital technology enables very short stand-by times and shutter time lag, making possible rapid burst shooting even for the highest quality images.

The burst shooting function is especially notable. The high-end DMC-LC5 has the ability to shoot a maximum of 8 frames at a rate of 4 frames per second in maximum picture resolution. The DMC-F7 can shoot a maximum of 5 frames at a rate of 4 frames per second in maximum picture resolution. These are high levels in the industry in their class. These functions enable these DSCs to be used in innovative ways that have been difficult to achieve even with analog cameras.

Both models offer greatly expanded networking capabilities as well. In addition to offering a conventional network connection via PCs, they can also be networked with such SD-card capable appliances as PDAs, mobile handsets, digital TV receivers, video printers, and other equipment by using SD Memory Cards.

With these two new DSC models, offering both high image quality and networking ability, Matsushita intends to extensively promote its DSCs in the market.

About Matsushita Electric Industrial
Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., best known for its Panasonic, National, Technics, and Quasar brand names, is a worldwide leader in the development and manufacture of electronics products for a wide range of consumer, business, and industrial needs. Based in Osaka, Japan, the company recorded consolidated sales of US$61.45 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2001. In addition to the Tokyo and other Japanese stock exchanges (6752), Matsushita's shares are also listed on the Amsterdam, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, New York, Pacific (NYSE/PCX: MC), and Paris stock exchanges. For more information, visit the Matsushita web site at http://www.panasonic.co.jp/global/top.html.

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