Posts Tagged ‘Panasonic Lumix’

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I have a new camera.

It’s a Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS4 and baby, I think I’m in love.  Up until now, almost all the photos on this blog have been taken with a  Panasonic Lumix FZ20, which we bought for nearly $800 in 2004.  Compared to today’s cameras, it’s almost archaic, offering only 5-megapixel resolution.  But it has a magnificent Leica lens, takes wonderful photos and, after a short tutorial from über photo-whiz Chris D, I’ve been able to make it do everything I want it to.  Except be small and compact, so that it could fit in my handbag.

Yesterday, I decided I needed a “pocket” camera (can you tell that I’m a child of the 70s?). Preferably a Panasonic one, so that I wouldn’t have to relearn menus and functions – I’m very hard-wired in that way.  Today, I bought the base model of the Lumix range , and I’m  completely astounded by how far the technology has come in just a few short years.

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Firstly, this tiny camera – less than 10cm x 6cm x 2cm in size – takes 8MP photos.  And this was the bottom of the range – everything else was 10 and 12 meg.

Secondly, it has a rechargeable battery (a Pete prerequisite – he refuses to pay for disposable batteries), an adjustable white balance (my prerequisite – I hate the blue and red cast from fluorescent lights) and best of all, an adjustable ISO, which means I was able to take all the photos below without a flash.

Thirdly, and this is the kicker, this highly featured, seriously cool little camera cost…$169.  That’s less than a sack of Belgian chocolate or dinner for one at Tetsuyas and about 20% of what we paid for our original Lumix camera five years ago.  We brought it home, charged up the battery and took it for a test run at the Canterbury Leagues Club.

The fact we were having dinner at the Leagues Club made Kara and Christina smile, so I’ve taken lots of photos to show them how interesting the place really is.  It has some unusual features, starting with the large fountain you pass on the way in, which turns into a fire display at about 7pm (weather permitting).

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Walking into the foyer always reminds me of large Asian hotels – complete with waterfall, tropical pond and recorded bird calls.

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The club has an independently operated Chinese restaurant, which does a great Peking Duck.  It’s always divided into two courses, beginning with the duck pancakes – a piece of crisp duck skin, dressed with shallot, cucumber and sweet sauce, then wrapped in a soft flatbread. This is  followed by San Choy Bow, in which the leftover duck meat is fried with bamboo shoots, water chestnuts, Chinese mushrooms and sauce, then served in lettuce cups.  These photos are for Chris’ son, the Finicky Eater, who is a mad keen foodie and will one day be a Masterchef judge – I’d almost bet money on it.

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Can you believe all these photos were taken at night time, without a flash or tripod?  Under fluorescent lights? On a camera that cost $169? And they are SOOC – straight out of the camera – which means I haven’t had to adjust or fix them up in any way.

I am completely smitten with this little gem.  Watch out for more photos of the big wide world in days to come!

In case anyone’s interested, we bought our Lumix from Ted’s Cameras.  Note that it didn’t come with a memory card. This is absolutely not a paid ad, and I suspect that if you hunt around, you might even find it a bit cheaper.

Edit: even cheaper at Bing Lee at the moment – $149!

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