The Bottom Line
When it comes to one of the latest digital cameras from Panasonic, beginning photographers will find a lot of features to like, as my Panasonic Lumix DMC-FP8 review shows.
The only slightly disappointing features with the FP8 include its $299 MSRP and its 2.7-inch LCD ... it would be nice if the former were a little smaller and the latter were a little larger. The button structure on the FP8 is a little confusing at first, too.
Otherwise, the Lumix DMC-FP8 is a great camera. Its image quality is very good, especially in macro mode, and its response times are as good as you'll find in a point and shoot camera.
- Nice mix of value, stylish looks, and desireable features
- Image quality is outstanding, both indoors and outdoors
- Response times are excellent
- Macro mode works very well - very sharp text photos with no flash washout
- Intelligent Auto button makes FP8 a point and shoot
- Button structure can be a little confusing at first
- LCD could be a little larger
- LCD blurs as you move the camera, can make it tough to follow moving subjects
- Price could be a little lower
- Resolution: 12.1 megapixels
- Optical zoom: 4.6X (28-128mm)
- LCD: 2.7-inch, 230,000 pixels
- Maximum image size: 4000 x 3000 pixels
- Battery: Rechargeable Li-ion
- Dimensions: 2.3 x 3.7 x 0.80 inches
- Weight: 4.62 ounces (no battery)
- Image sensor: CCD 1/2.33 in.
Guide Review - Panasonic Lumix DMC-FP8 Review
With 12 megapixels of resolution, the FP8 can easily make large prints. In addition, this camera creates very sharp images that are well exposed, meaning your large prints will look great.
Image quality is very good indoors with the flash, too, which doesn't always happen with a beginner level camera. I was especially impressed with the FP8's macro settings, which created very sharp close-up photos without being washed out by the flash. Photographs of text documents are easy to read.
The Lumix DMC-FP8 really shines in its response times. This camera is ready use quickly after you slide the power switch, and it has almost no shutter lag, which is great for capturing subjects that like to move around. Shot to shot delays are almost non-existent, too.
The performance of the LCD is a slight disappointment. The image on the display blurs as you're moving the camera, which occasionally makes it a little tough to follow moving subjects. However, the LCD is easy to see in bright light, as you can pick from a few different LCD brightness modes.
The FP8 includes what Panasonic calls a folding optics lens from Leica. The high quality Leica 4.6X optical zoom lens contains a large collection of advanced optics, which provides the quality Leica requires in an ultra-compact camera body (0.8 inches in thickness).
Panasonic offers the FP8 in silver, black, and red, and it's a stylish looking camera with the folding optics lens completely contained inside the camera body. The buttons on the camera light up in blue when they're being used, which is cool.
Once you figure out the button layout, they're pretty easy to use, but the buttons can be a little confusing at first. You can select from 28 scene modes, including a "pet" mode, where the camera will store the pet's name and age, inserting it into the photo.