Compared to... Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3
(@ full resolution and downsized to 6MP)

Below you will find a studio comparison between the Fuji FinePix F200 EXR and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3

Because the difference in resolution is so great between the Panasonic and the pixel-binned F200 output, we have also resized the Panasonic image for more direct comparison.

Studio scene comparison (@ ISO 800)

  • Fuji FinePix F200 EXR: EXR SN mode, ISO 800, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.33 EV compensation

  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3: Aperture Priority mode, ISO 800, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.67 EV compensation

  • Panasonic DMC-LX3 [RESIZED]: Image resized to 6MP using Photoshop's Bicubic Sharper algorithm. (Downloadable version then saved at Quality 11 JPEG)
  • Lighting: Daylight simulation, >98% CRI
Fujifilm FinePix F200 EXR
Panasonic LX3
Panasonic LX3 [RESIZED]
ISO 800, 1/75 sec, F12
ISO 800, 1/1300 sec, F3.2
ISO 800, 1/1300 sec, F3.2

The LX3 and F200 have very similarly sized sensors so it's reasonable to assume that each photosite on the slightly lower resolution LX3 is slightly larger (which matters if you compare at the pixel level, as we do). However, in its SN mode, the F200 groups the information from pairs of photosites together to give a much larger effective photosite. However, if you look at the results, the higher resolution of the LX3 is clearly offering a greater benefit than the theoretical decrease in noise offered by the larger, combined photosites of the F200 EXR. The text on the globe crop is undoubtedly clearer in the LX3's output, for instance.

Downsizing the LX3 output (using Photoshop's Bicubic sharper algorithm that applies sharpening to compensate for the softening that is brought about by downsizing) produces results that are unquestionably superior to the F200's. The Panasonic is an expensive camera, of course, but it goes to show that a well-sorted large sensor (by compact camera standards - tiny in DSLR terms) is enough can match the F200's technological cleverness. The extra money spent on the LX3 also buys a fast (albeit less flexible), lens that can allow over 1 stop more light in, allowing the use of a lower ISO setting in any given lighting conditions.