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Panasonic unveils FT3, FX77, TZ18 and TZ20 cameras

Four new compact Lumix digital cameras

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT3

Panasonic has announced the details of four new Lumix digital cameras: the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT3, Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX77, Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ18 and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ20. All four of the new cameras are due to launch in March 2011.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT3

The Panasonic FT3 is a ‘rugged’ camera designed to appeal to outdoor activity enthusiasts. Panasonic claims that the FT3 is waterproof to 12m, freezeproof to -10 degrees C, and can be dropped from a height of 2m. Its waterproof body will also offer protection from dust.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX77

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX77

The Lumix FT3 has a built in GPS, compass and altimeter. These features will allow users to automatically title their pictures with locations or landmarks and even altitudes. We explored a similar function in the video first look of the Leica V-Lux 20. The FT3 comes loaded with more than one million pre-programmed landmarks.

The FT3 has a 12.1Mp CCD sensor and a 28mm lens with a 4.6x optical zoom. It has a 230k dot resolution LCD that measures 2.7-inches diagonally.

You can read full lab-based reviews of the Panasonic FT1 and the Panasonic FT2 in our digital camera reviews.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX77

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ18

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ18

The Panasonic FX77 has the same 12.1Mp CCD sensor as the FT3. The FX77 offers touchscreen control through its 3.5-inch LCD. The touchscreen operation offers a number of features including zoom, shutter control and auto-focus.

The FX77 has a 5x optical zoom which measures 24mm at its widest setting. According to Panasonic, the FX77 can capture 3.7fps (frames per second) at full resolution, and 10fps with the resolution dropped to 3Mp.

The Lumix FX77 is capable of recording full 1080 HD video. We currently have eight Panasonic FX digital cameras test results in our digital camera reviews, including four Best Buys.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ18 and DMC-TZ20

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ20

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ20

The Lumix TZ18 and TZ20 are similar models, with the TZ20 housing slightly more enhanced features. Both models are able to shoot HD video, however the TZ20 captures 1080 full HD video, while the TZ18 is only capable of recording 720 HD clips.

Both models have a 14.1Mp MOS sensor and a 16x optical zoom that begins at a wide 24mm. Each new TZ camera has a 3-inch LCD.

Another feature of note that the TZ20 has and the TZ18 lacks is built in GPS and a world clock that automatically changes when it crosses time zones.

We’ll buy and fully test all of these models when they launch and publish our findings in our digital camera reviews.

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