Display and menus continued

New for the LX1 is a quick menu - accessed by pressing the joystick for about half a second. This menu (which is like a cleaner version of Canon's FUNC menu) gives fast, easy access to ISO and white balance (hurrah!), as well as image size and quality. This is a big, big improvement on the old 'menu button, scroll down, select item, etc etc' system used on previous compact Lumix models. Nice. The three-page record menu covers options such as white balance, sensitivity, picture size/quality (all of which can also be accessed via the quick menu - see left), focus modes and image adjustments. Here is also where you'll find the unique 'flip animation' function. This allows a series of shots to be turned into a QuickTime movie - make your very own 'Chicken Run'.
Turn the main mode dial to one of the two SCN (scene) positions and press the menu button to choose a subject mode (from the 9 available). Press the menu button again and you get most of the options in the normal record menu. You can preset SCN1 and SCN2 to your two most commonly-used scene modes. The three-page playback menu offers the usual array of printing, erasing, protecting and slideshow options. There's also the option to add sound to saved files, as well as crop (trim), change the aspect ratio and resize them.
As when in record mode you can choose the amount of information displayed in playback mode - from nothing at all to full data and histogram (as shown here). Repeatedly pushing the zoom control to the left (W) allows you to view a page of 9, 16 or 25 thumbnails.
Moving the zoom to the right enlarges the playback image. There are only four steps (2x, 4x, 8x and 16x), but it's very quick. The four arrow keys are used to scroll around enlarged images. The setup menu - accessible from either playback or record mode - has four pages of basic camera-related settings, from monitor brightness and auto review settings to power management, sounds and date and time settings.