First Impression of the Panasonic Lumix LX10 Compact Camera
While reviewing one camera after another could indicate that I am getting into the camera review business, I promise you I am not. The reason why I am reviewing the Panasonic LX10 and the Sony RX10 III at the same time is that these were the two cameras that I picked up when I traded in my old photography gear. For a very long time, I was just holding on to too many rarely used camera equipment. Therefore, it was a move that I am pleased to make because it is time to make room for new technology!
Before buying Panasonic Lumix LX10
A few years ago, I rekindled my photography passion while using a Panasonic LX5, which was a 12 MP compact camera. It took RAW files, and it was a camera that many street photographers used to love. However, I was never really wowed by the image quality and with a 12 MP sensor, and I wouldn't have much room for cropping if needed. Then I also purchased the first Sony RX100, the very first compact camera with a 1" sensor. I was reasonably happy with it till I enquired more other advanced cameras and it ended up just sitting in the box. Next month, I am making a trip to Japan, and I am going back home to Malaysia to visit my friends and family. When I travel, I love to shoot through the airplane window. Thus a great compact camera that I can carry in my jacket pocket is much needed. At least I finally found a reason to get new stuff, right?
Why I chose Panasonic LX10 instead of Sony RX100 V?
Many enthusiast photographers always compare the Panasonic LX10 to a Sony RX100 V, as both of the cameras are similar in many ways. The reason I opted for the Panasonic LX10 was partly due to the price difference. Although it lacks an electronic viewfinder, I wasn't worried about it since I often carry multiple cameras with me. In addition to that, I have been having fun with the 4K still shooting feature. Even though post focus shooting is only available at 8 MP jpeg, it is a lot of fun and is sufficient for social media posting.
Things that can be better with the Panasonic LX10
Nowadays, most of the new cameras do not come with an external charger, and the Panasonic LX10 is in the same boat. Personally, I prefer an external charger because I do not want to fiddle with the HDMI and USB socket door. I would worry the door hinge would slowly get loose if I open and close it too often.
If you are looking for a perfect camera, you probably will never find one. Regardless how much technology advances, our lifestyle is always evolving, and the way we handle a device is to keep on changing as well. So there are a few flaws I noticed in a short period using the Panasonic LX10. Compared to the Sony RX100 series, this camera has a better grip at the front, but it puzzles me that they decided to add a button to the thumb rest of the camera. I did accidentally press the button quite a few times while shooting. Most of the reviews online praised the menu system of the Pansonic LX10, and I agree with most of it. Except when it comes wifi connection, I felt like a child trying to drive a car. It is confusing and is complicated, or you could simply say I am too old to learn new tricks.
Great things about Panasonic LX10
Out of the box, the Panasonic LX10 looks quite compact; even the lens features an aperture ring and a focus ring, the front element is not extruding that much. Holding the camera in hands, it feels well built, Panasonic has produced a solid piece of hardware. The camera comes with a large aperture 1.4, which helps compact cameras like this to gain more light when shooting indoors. Although I don't often take selfies, I couldn't help but test out the selfie feature with the flip up screen. I love that it would count down once you press the shutter, which gives you time to be ready and look at the lens. In general, image quality looks fairly good so far, and I am satisfied with the detail sharpness the camera produces. Noise is present in high ISO images but it has a pleasing noise pattern, and the details are still all there if you are shooting RAW format. You will loose quite a bit of fine details if you do in-camera RAW to Jpeg conversion.
It is crazy how many features you can get from a compact camera like the Panasonic LX10. It probably will take me some time to test out all the features of this camera. For now, I am quite happy with my purchase, and I would totally recommend it if you are looking to buy an advanced compact camera!