- 16.0Mp Live MOS Sensor
- 3.0″ Free Angle Touch Enabled LCD
- Micro Four Thirds Lens Mount
- Electronic Eye-Level Viewfinder
- 2x Digital Zoom
- 1920 x 1080/60i Video Capture
- Live Viewfinder
- 6400 ISO
- Mode Dial / Hot Shoe
- Intelligent Auto Plus
Panasonic boasts that their DMC-G3 Digital Camera is even better than the company’s G2. With an enhanced 16Mp sensor, a Free Angle touch LCD, improved access thanks to the mode dial, and other numerous enhancements, it would appear they’re right. One way in which the G3 didn’t change is that it still provides the user with the versatile Micro Four Thirds lens mount for attaching any number of Four Thirds lenses, and then some. That means the photographer will have all the advantages of a large DSLR camera, in a compact body. There’s no compromise when traveling – both the ability to move quickly with light weight gear and to take creative images are available when shooting with a Micro Four Thirds camera.
Of course, the G3 also shoots 1080i HD video! What digital camera worth its salt doesn’t these days? Knowing that HD DSLR video is the wave of the future and a driving force behind the Micro Four Thirds movement, Panasonic was sure to include 1920 x 1080/60i capture. Features like a built-in stereo microphone and a live viewfinder help the user to capture impressive movies. Using the aforementioned HDMI connection, those same movies can be outputted to an HDTV for immediate viewing on the big screen.
Whether the shooter is capturing stills or video, the lens options for the G3 are impressive. The Micro Four Thirds mount allows for 11 lens options from the Lumix G MFT System. There’s even a 3D lens available for capturing 3-dimensional and 2D images simultaneously. In addition, lens adapters are available for mounting Leica M and Leica R lenses and older Lumix full Four Thirds lenses. In addition, many Lumix MFT lenses feature optical image stabilization, which helps to prevent blur or un-wanted motion.
The DMC-G3’s 3.0″ free angle touchscreen LCD helps the shooter to capture from numerous angles, and to replay video and stills with ease – whether it’s an audience of one, or the entire family is gathered around. The touch controls on the LCD allow for navigating the menu, focusing, and playback, along with triggering the shutter. Other noteworthy features include the camera’s mode dial and hot shoe. The mode dial enables fast access to common camera modes like Aperture Priority and Manual, and it also provides access to additional settings, including two custom modes, scene modes, and the Creative Control Mode. In addition, there’s also a dedicated video button that can activate video capture without requiring that the camera modes change. Additionally, the hot shoe allows for attachment of external flashes.
In addition to being a lightweight, user-friendly Compact Camera System, the G3 also provides the shooter with uncomplicated storage options. The internal memory card slot is compatible with SD/SDHC and SDXC memory cards. Of course, like most digital cameras today, files can also be off-loaded via the camera’s USB interface. Other camera connections worth mentioning here include the mini HDMI, an A/V output, and the 2.5mm min jack. The 2.5mm jack allows for connection of an optional remote for hands-free control of the camera.
With the compact system camera market heating up, Panasonic’s G3 shows that the drive is toward smaller and smaller designs, as was seen in the Sony NEX-5. While Panasonic has produced a smaller camera, the G3 marks several firsts, maintaining major big-camera features while reducing the camera’s size, increasing its novelty and portability.