Panasonic’s new LUMIX FS Series digital cameras are about to go on sale, each with the Intelligent Auto (iA) mode, which selects the correct settings automatically in any situation, so all you have to do is point and shoot. The DMC-FS15 is available in black, while the DMC-FS7 comes in bright pink as well as silver and black.
The new Photo Frame mode lets the user put attractive borders around photos, so when printed, they look like postcards in picture frames. Also, the new My Scene setting lets the user assign their two most frequently used Scene modes and access them instantly when required. The FS Series is also capable of recording up to WVGA (848×480)1 motion pictures at 30 frames per second in 16:9 wide screen format – ideal for viewing on a wide screen TV – as well as standard VGA (640 x 480) format.
With Panasonic’s iA mode, the camera makes the settings intuitively, activating features such as Intelligent Image Stabilisation, Intelligent Scene Selector, Face Detection, AF Tracking, Continuous Auto-Focus, Intelligent Exposure and Digital Red-eye Correction. This leaves the user free to simply compose the shot and press the shutter button, knowing that the image will be clear and correctly exposed.
iA Direct Button: Activate all of the iA shooting-assist features easily, with control moved from the dial to a button on top of the camera.
Intelligent Scene Selector: Automatically selects the appropriate scene mode from the most frequently-used modes such as Portrait, Scenery, Macro, Night Scenery and Night Portrait.
Face Detection System: This helps the camera to focus, set auto exposure and detects up to 15 human faces, capturing them clearly and brightly. The camera provides continuous adjustment of focus and exposure even if a face is turned sideways to the camera.
AF Tracking (DMC-FS15 only): AF tracking ‘locks’ the focus onto a moving subject. The camera then automatically tracks the subject as it moves, keeping it in focus without the user having to hold the shutter button halfway down. This makes it easier to capture the perfect moment clearly and in sharp focus when shooting images of a child, pet, sports or any scene with moving subjects and spur-of-the-moment action.
Continuous Auto-focus: Allows faster response for spontaneous shooting by minimising auto-focus time. The camera is constantly focusing, so there is no need to press the shutter button halfway before shooting.
Intelligent Exposure (DMC-FS15 only): Ensures that exposure is well- balanced across a single image and detail maintained. For example, it will adjust aperture and shutter speed to prevent image wash out in a bright area, while simultaneously brightening a dark area by changing the ISO sensitivity in the specific region of the camera’s image sensor. It also features an automatic backlight compensation function that activates whenever the camera detects that the light source is behind the subject.
Digital Red-Eye Correction: Automatically corrects the red-eye effect caused by the use of the flash, via software in the camera.
Intelligent Image Stabilisation: Comprises two features – MEGA OIS, which helps compensate for the effects of hand-shake; and Intelligent ISO Control, which takes into account that the subject is moving and adjusts the ISO setting. Combining these two anti-blur features allows the camera to capture clear, crisp images. MEGA OIS now offers three modes – 1,2 and AUTO.