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Panasonic unveils LUMIX DMC-FH8 and DMC-FH6 mid-level compacts

By dpreview staff on Jan 9, 2012 at 23:45 GMT

Pre-CES: Panasonic has unveiled the DMC-FH8 (DMC-FS45 in Europe) and DMC-FH6 (DMC-FS40 in Europe) mid-level compact cameras. Both cameras are built around 5x, 24-120mm equivalent F2.5-6.4 stabilized lenses. The FH8 has a 3.0" LCD screen while the FH6 makes do with a 2.7" unit.

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Press Release:

PANASONIC ENHANCES LINEUP OF POPULAR FH-SERIES DIGITAL CAMERAS WITH TWO SLIMMER, MORE COMPACT MODELS

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH8

Featuring a Bright, Fast LEICA f2.5 Lens, the New LUMIX FH6 is Equipped With HD Video Recording and Panoramic Shooting, While the LUMIX FH8 Also Adds a Creative Miniature Effect Mode and USB Charging Capability

LAS VEGAS, NV (January 9, 2012) – Panasonic today introduced the new 16.1-megapixel LUMIX DMC-FH8 and 14.1-megapixel LUMIX DMC-FH6, both of which feature slim, compact stylish designs and are packed with advanced photography functions to enhance a consumer’s ability to easily take beautiful photos, even in low light situations.  Beyond its capability to shoot high-quality still photos, both models can record 720p High Definition (HD) video.  The LUMIX FH6 shoots HD video in Motion JPEG format while the LUMIX FH8 records HD video in MP4 format and incorporates a dedicated video button in its design so users can quickly and easily switch from capturing photos to recording video.  

“The new LUMIX FH8 and LUMIX FH6 incorporate high-quality LEICA lenses with advanced imaging technologies that help create stunning picture quality in an extremely compact camera size. Both offer users of all photographic experience the ability to capture exceptional photos and video with an ultra-slim point-and-shoot camera that will bring their memories to life for years to come.  The FH8 goes even further by incorporating creative modes that spice up the memory-making for today’s discerning photographer,” said David Fisher, Product Manager, Imaging, Panasonic Consumer Marketing Company of North America. “A new feature to some 2012 LUMIX models, including the LUMIX FH8, is USB charging which offers users a more convenient and flexible way to charge the camera directly from a computer.”  

Equipped with a 24mm ultra-wide angle LEICA DC VARIO-SUMMARIT lens, the LUMIX FH8 and LUMIX FH6 offer an incredible 5x optical zoom with f2.5 brightness, all while maintaining a stylish, and slim camera body.  This high-end lens excels in shooting dynamic landscapes with wide-angle view and also in capturing moving subjects even in low-lit situations, like indoors or at night.  Offering exceptional optical performance to provide minimal distortion and chromatic aberrations while suppressing ghosting and flare, the advanced lens unit allows for higher shutter speed and captures stunningly clear images.  The 5x optical zoom also increases its power to the equivalent of 10x with the iA Zoom (Intelligent Auto Zoom) function with minimum deterioration of image quality thanks to the help of Intelligent Resolution technology.  The multi-tasking image-processing Venus Engine enables beautiful image recording and Sonic Speed AF (Auto Focus) combined with a quick camera start-up time to offer a high-speed response time to ensure users can capture even the most spur-of-the-moment photo opportunities. 

To encourage creative shooting, the LUMIX FH8 and LUMIX FH6 feature image effects that allow users to have more fun with their photographic experience.  The Panorama Shot makes it possible for users to shoot horizontal or vertical panoramic images by taking consecutive shots and then overlaying for the effect of a panoramic photo.  The popular Beauty Retouch function allows users to give photos a variety of cosmetic effects and Auto Retouch adjusts contrast and brightness levels to give photos a different look.  The LUMIX FH8 also adds Miniature Effect mode where peripherals are defocused and saturation and contrast are emphasized to make the picture look like a diorama.  Video recorded in Miniature Effect mode is played back in 10x fast-forwarding, making it comical and fun to watch*. 

For users looking for a large screen, the LUMIX FH8 offers a bright 3-inch LCD screen, while the LUMIX FH6 is slightly more compact with a 2.7-inch LCD screen.  The Intelligent LCD screens on both models are equipped with automatic backlight adjustment to offer a clear view of photos under any lighting conditions. In addition, both models offer LUMIX Image Uploader which lets users instantly share images and videos on Facebook© or YouTube©  via a computer.  The LUMIX FH8 also allows users to enjoy the new flexibility of USB charging or conventional AC adapter charging methods. 

In iA mode users can automatically activate a suite of technologies to enhance photos without adjusting settings every time conditions change.  As part of iA mode, the LUMIX FH8 features AF Tracking, making it easy to lock on subjects in a frame and keep them in focus – even as they move.  Both the LUMIX FH8 and FH6 also include the following features in iA: MEGA O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilization), Intelligent ISO Control, Face Detection, Intelligent Scene Selector and Intelligent Exposure.   

Pricing and 2012 availability will be announced approximately 30 days prior to shipping. Adding to its stylish look, the LUMIX FH8 will be available in silver, black, red, and violet and the LUMIX FH6 will be available in black only.  For more information, and live coverage on January 10-11 from Panasonic at the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show, please visit www.panasonic.com/CES. Plus, follow Panasonic’s CES activities on Twitter @PanasonicEvents and join the conversations.

Panasonic Lumic DMC-FH6

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH8 and DMC-FH6 Specfications

 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH8Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH6
Body type
Body typeCompact
Sensor
Max resolution4608 x 34564320 x 3240
Other resolutions4608 x 3072, 4608 x 2592, 3648 x 2736, 3456 x 3456, 2560 x 1920, 2560 x 1920, 2048 x 1536, 2048 x 1536, 2048 x 1536, 2048 x 1536, 640 x 4804320 x 2880, 4320 x 2432, 3648 x 2736, 2560 x 1920, 2048 x 1536, 640 x 480
Image ratio w:h1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:94:3, 16:9
Effective pixels16 megapixels14 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors17 megapixels15 megapixels
Sensor size1/2.33" (6.08 x 4.56 mm)
Sensor typeCCD
Color filter arrayPrimary Color filter
Image
ISOAuto, Hi Auto (1600-6400), 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
White balance presets4
Custom white balanceYes (1)
Image stabilizationOptical
Uncompressed formatNo
JPEG quality levelsFine, Standard
File format
  • JPEG 2.3
Optics & Focus
Focal length (equiv.)24–120 mm
Optical zoom5×
Maximum apertureF2.5 - F6.4
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Face Detection
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Center
  • Single
  • Face Detection
Autofocus assist lampYes
Digital zoomYes (4x)
Manual focusNo
Normal focus range50 cm (19.69)
Macro focus range4 cm (1.57)5 cm (1.97)
Number of focus points239
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFixed
Screen size32.7
Screen dots230,000
Touch screenNo
Screen typeTFT Color LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeNone
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed8 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/1600 sec
Exposure modes
  • Intelligent Auto
  • Scene
  • Miniature
  • Intelligent Auto
  • Scene
  • Motion Picture
Scene modes
  • Portrait
  • Soft Skin
  • Scenery
  • Panorama
  • Sports
  • Night Portrait
  • Night Scenery
  • Food
  • Baby1
  • Baby2
  • Pet
  • Sunset
  • High Sensitivity
  • Glass Through
  • Photo Frame
Built-in flashYes
Flash range5.60 m4.60 m
External flashNo
Flash modesAuto, On, Off, Red-Eye reduction
Continuous drive1 fps2 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 10 sec)
Metering modes
  • Multi
Exposure compensation±2 (at 1/3 EV steps)
WB BracketingNo
Videography features
Resolutions1280 x 720 (30 fps), 640 x 480 (30 fps)1280 x 720 (30 fps), 640 x 480 (30 fps), 320 x 240 (30 fps)
FormatMPEG-4Motion JPEG
MicrophoneMono
SpeakerMono
Storage
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC, Internal
Storage included70 MB10 MB
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMINo
Remote controlNo
Physical
Environmentally sealedNo
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionLithium-Ion rechargeable battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)260280
Weight (inc. batteries)123 g (0.27 lb / 4.34 oz)119 g (0.26 lb / 4.20 oz)
Dimensions96 x 57 x 19 mm (3.78 x 2.24 x 0.75)96 x 56 x 20 mm (3.78 x 2.2 x 0.79)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingNo
GPSNone
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