New Panasonic LX5 builds upon the LX3, avoids taking risks
The Panasonic LX3 (diary, reviews, price-check) had a pretty good (and sometimes dramatic) two year run as the LX-series top dog. Now, the LX3 slides to the "deputy" role as Panasonic makes the previously leaked LX5 official with a starting price of $500, just like the starting price of the LX3 two years ago!
We already went through the spec-sheet differences between the LX5 and the LX3 when the camera "accidentally" showed up at the Panasonic website during the weekend, before the official announcement. You can see all the new features color-coded at the Panasonic.net LX5 page.
The timing is good for Panasonic as it needed a second camera to counter the latest moves by other manufacturers - Canon has the G11 and S90 power-duo, Samsung has the EX1/TL500 and flying-under-the-radar TL350, Ricoh has the GXR S10 and GX200/GX100. Interestingly, Nikon and Sony continue to abstain from this segment, and Fuji punted with the F300-EXR.
The LX5 is now available for pre-order at Amazon for $500 in your choice of black or silver.
Panasonic LX5 Pre-Production Sample pictures
+ dpreview (24 samples) [NEW!]
+ Panasonic samples (Iceland) (resizes your browser without asking, how rude, Flash-only)
+ one LX5 vs LX3 ISO 1600 crop at Quesabesde (middle of page)
+ Photography Blog
+ Let's Go Digital
+ Imaging Insider including 2-minute video slide-show
+ Imaging Resource and overview
+ Focus Numeriqeaux
+ Optyczne.pl (cool slides from presentation)
Reactions and Opinions
+ We will have a separate post in a couple of days rounding up the reactions and debates