Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX30

Intro

 

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX30 is a slim 7.2 Megapixel compact digital camera with a 3.6 zoom sporting wide angle capabilities and optical stabilisation. It’s the successor to the FX07 and at the time of writing, the world’s slimmest compact with a 28mm (equivalent) wide angle lens. As such it’s the flagship model in Panasonic’s general-purpose compact range.

Measuring just 22mm thick with a lens which folds flush to the surface, the FX30 can certainly slip into most pockets, and when powered-up, the zoom delivers a useful optical range equivalent to 28-100mm. As with all of Panasonic’s current digital cameras, the FX30 also boasts optical image stabilisation to greatly reduce camera shake.

The Lumix FX30 is mostly an automatic model, but with 21 scene presets it’s possible to achieve a variety of creative effects. It also sports the excellent dropdown menu system of higher-end Lumix cameras, allowing you to quickly and easily change settings including quality, white balance and sensitivity on the 2.5in colour screen.

Like other Lumix cameras you can record smooth video in normal or widescreen formats and the FX30 can even grab a selection of frames and save them as a single photo for a snapshot of the action – great for analysing your ski jumps or golf swing.

So with a wide angle zoom, optical stabilisation and a decent screen in a slim, well-built body, the Lumix FX30 should be an ideal compact camera, but how does it perform in practice? In our Panasonic Lumix FX30 review we’ll put it through its paces, testing the features and comparing the quality against the best compacts around today. For a demonstration of the FX30’s headline features, including its zoom range, stabilisation and menu system, check out our Panasonic FX30 video tour.

Note: at the time of writing, Panasonic announced the Lumix FX33 and FX55 models. The FX33 is essentially identical to the FX30 reviewed here apart from having fractionally higher 8.1 Megapixel resolution, 6400 ISO sensitivity and face detection. The FX55 takes the FX33 upgrades and adds a bigger 3in screen, although can’t as a consequence exploit the optional underwater housing that’s available for the FX30 and FX33 models. We’ll test these new models when they become available.


Testing notes:

The model tested was a final production unit. Following our convention of using default factory and best quality JPEG settings to test camera bodies unless otherwise stated, the FX30 was set to 7M Fine JPEG mode with Auto White Balance, Multiple metering and the Standard Colour mode.

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