11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
A fantastic little camera,
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This review is from: Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3 12.1MP Compact System Camera Kit with 14-42mm Lumix G VARIO f/3.5-5.6 ASPH MEGA OIS Lens - Black (Electronics)
This is the GF-3 compact in the much-lauded Lumix range, this one includes the body and the vari-focal lens 14-42mm. For technical specifications; please see the product descriptions.
I have to say that this is a fantastic camera that sits somewhere between the point-and-shoot category and the true SLRs. It has no viewfinder, so you are looking at a digital reproduction of the light hitting the sensor on the back screen. This is not a major problem, but proved to be difficult to frame things correctly in bright-light or higher-humidities where the fingerprints from using the touch-screen show up. All settings can be tweeked manually with the quick menu and has full ISO settings and F-dot control.
What I found most useful is the IA (Intelligent-Auto) assist button that sits on the top of the camera next to the capture button, this IA (Idiot-Assist as I have come to call it!) sets up the ISO and focal settings for you on the fly - it is incredibly quick at doing this as well meaning that when there isn't time to plan the shot; you still get great results. The focal mode can be shifted from Auto-Continuous, to Auto-Single or onto Manual, where a zoomed in section of the photo is shown to you to tweak it to perfection with the manual focus ring. This is a very nice touch that allows you to focus properly, despite the lack of a viewfinder.
The build is sturdy, if a little lens-heavy - but then this is the compact and has made an effort to reduce body size. The lens comes with a hood & a branded-carry-belt that attaches neatly to the sides. It comes with all the standard charger & necessary transfer cables for data - obviously. For this price, this is a fantastic camera that will produce quality photos with a professional feel to them.
The one thing that frustrated me was the lack of a camera case specifically for this model. The ones for the GF3 are slightly too large and the best fit I could find was for the Sony NEX-5, but does the job. Aside from this minor qualm, this is an impressive bit of kit for the money. Recommended!