If you are looking for a sophisticated camera that is easy to use, then you should seriously consider purchasing the LUMIX DMC-FH2. This great value camera features the technology that you have come to expect from the Panasonic LUMIX product line, with plenty of new upgrades and a 20% slimmer profile than its predecessor. The ultra-compact FH2 has a 14.1-megapixel resolution, a retractable 28mm wide-angle Leica DC lens with 4x optical zoom, and the newly integrated Venus Engine VI. You also get Panasonic's exclusive Intelligent Auto technology, which makes taking fully automated, fully optimized pictures a breeze. New additions to the FH2 include Intelligent Exposure, AF Tracking, the LUMIX Image Uploader and 70MB of built-in memory. Along with Intelligent Auto, the FH2 has many of the automated functions that have made LUMIX cameras so popular: Intelligent Scene Selector, Intelligent ISO Control, MEGA O.I.S. and Face Detection.
28mm Wide-angle 4x Optical Zoom Leica DC Lens:
The FH2 is equipped with a newly developed 28mm retractable wide-angle Leica DC Vario-Elmar lens with an impressive 4x optical zoom. The lens is housed in a surprisingly slim profile body.
The 28mm wide-angle lens makes it easy to capture stunning landscapes, architectural structures and dynamic group photos with ease, delivering superb image quality.
The 4x optical zoom can increase its power to 5x equivalent when the Intelligent Zoom function is engaged, whilst maintaining image quality in digital zoom by activating the Intelligent Resolution technology. With the Extra Optical Zoom function, the FH2s zoom power can be extended even further to 8.4x, which helps to bring those distant subjects within an acceptable range to compose a successful shot.
The high speed, high performance Venus Engine VI delivers beautiful image recording with better signal processing and advanced noise reduction. Resulting images benefit from the separate application of luminance noise and chromatic noise; images are reproduced with minimal noise all the way up to ISO1600 sensitivity at full resolution. This higher quality signal processing and noise reduction makes it possible to capture perfectly balanced shots at night or in conditions such as dim indoor lighting.
Sonic Speed AF:
Sonic Speed AF has been completely re-engineered for the FH2 and now includes a faster actuator, parallel software processing and optimized algorithms for quicker, more accurate auto focus performance. Focusing is also approximately 45% faster than in previous models, so action shots and moving subjects are captured with impressive clarity.
2.7-inch LCD with 230,000-dot High Resolution:
The DMC-FH2 has a generous 2.7-inch LCD display screen with 230,000-dot high resolution and Intelligent LCD technology. The screen automatically adjusts display brightness in 11 steps according to ambient conditions. The screen offers sharp, clear images in virtually every shooting situation, from nighttime to dim indoor lighting, to bright daylight, and its size makes sharing video and photo playback with friends and family much easier. The integrated High-angle Mode makes the display easy to view from a low angle and allows for a greater degree of creativity in framing shots, such as when the camera is held high to snap a picture over the heads of a crowd.
Intelligent Auto (iA) Mode:
Intelligent Auto (iA) makes taking perfectly optimized photos as easy as just pressing a button. There's no need to fuss with complicated manual settings or miss a once-in-a-lifetime shooting opportunity because you're trying to adjust your camera - simply activate iA Mode and let the FH2 do all the work for you. With six detection and correction functions, iA Mode automatically creates beautifully clear images with just the right exposure and balance. And because Intelligent Resolution is always activated in iA Mode, your images will be sharper and of higher quality, even with extended zoom range to 5x equivalent.
MEGA Optical Image Stabilization:
Every time you press the shutter to take a picture you risk vibrating the camera just enough to ruin your shot with blurring or ghosting. MEGA Optical Image Stabilization (O.I.S.) combats the blurring caused by hand-shake and the use of slow shutter speeds in low lighting conditions. It does this by detecting movement at an impressive sampling frequency of 4,000 times per second. This means that the FH2 is capable of picking up even the slightest movements, so you will never have to worry about trying to hold perfectly still when you take a picture. MEGA O.I.S. helps you shoot images that are optimized for clarity and precision. The Venus Engine enhances MEGA O.I.S. by shifting the blur-stopping lens on the FH2, letting you shoot in low lighting or macro and zoom modes (which are all particularly susceptible to blurring) without hesitation.
On other cameras, auto focus is activated by pressing the shutter button halfway down again and again until you're ready to snap a picture. The FH2 has Quick Auto Focus, which kicks in as soon as you point your camera at your desired subject. This reduces shutter lag time significantly and gives you the freedom to take pictures quickly. The super-fast Quick AF is perfect for capturing exciting images of active subjects with confidence, knowing that those sudden shooting opportunities will always be in focus and blur-free. This feature is great for taking shots when the action suddenly takes place right in front of you.
If you've ever tried to take a picture of a moving subject, you know how nearly impossible it can be to capture those kinds of images. With the Auto Focus Tracking feature, there's no need keep pressing the shutter button halfway down over and over again as you try to readjust the focus on a subject in motion. Once AF Tracking is engaged, the camera will follow your subject until you're ready to take the photo, maintaining perfect focus until just the right moment. Imagine the beautiful, dynamic images you'll be able to take thanks to AF Tracking. Kids, pets, and sporting events, candid shots - you'll never miss a moment with the FH2.
The Venus Engine powers Intelligent ISO, an innovative feature that detects subject movement. This automatically adjusts ISO levels and shutter speed to optimize the FH2 for the motion and lighting conditions. When subject motion is detected, the ISO setting is raised and the shutter speed is increased to stop blurring. For still photos, Intelligent ISO lowers ISO levels for detailed, natural images. Whether you're taking pictures of an energetic toddler, a bird in your garden or a vase of flowers on your kitchen table, Intelligent ISO delivers impressive, fully optimized images every time.
For those of us who love taking portraits and group shots of friends and loved ones, the FH2s intuitive Face Detection function is ideal. Face Detection identifies up to 15 faces at a time, so even crowded group shots are fully optimized with perfect focus and exposure. You won't have to worry about the blurring that can happen when the camera sets focus on an object in front of or behind your human subject, and faces will never appear too dark when shooting indoors or against a backlight. Face Detection also incorporates automatic red-eye correction and Face Tracking, which follows your chosen subject even if the person moves, turns sideways or changes position in the frame. From holiday celebrations to vacations, to school functions and more, it's never been easier to capture precious moments with your favorite people.
Intelligent Scene Selector:
When the FH2 is set to iA Mode, the Intelligent Scene Selector automatically chooses the best scene mode for the shooting situation. The camera is optimized for Scenery, Night Scenery, Portrait, Night Portrait, Sunset or Macro based on a number of detection functions, such as brightness level and focus. You can take beautiful photos in any setting without the hassle of manually adjusting controls whenever the scene changes. Go from day to night, indoors and out, with ease and confidence.
The newly incorporated Intelligent Exposure feature increases image brightness only in under-exposed areas of your images in small increments, delivering more precise image correction. When you take pictures outdoors against a sky background, images can become washed out. Intelligent Exposure intuitively adjusts aperture and shutter speed to leave the picture slightly under exposed to prevent washout, and brightness is gently applied to darker areas to create more balance. For indoor photos with insufficient lighting, Intelligent Exposure increases ISO sensitivity just in the low-lit areas to add brightness without compromising the clarity of fine details.
The FH2 benefits from Intelligent Resolution technology, powered by the Venus Engine. This innovative function automatically detects outlines, detailed textures and soft gradation in every image and performs optimal signal processing to each area individually. You record images with uniform sharpness and precise pixel-by-pixel signal processing. Outlines get more clarity, textures are refined and soft gradation is much smoother with exceptional noise reduction. No matter what you're shooting, your images will appear naturally crisp and clear.
NEW Panorama Assist Mode:
For the traveler in all of us, the FH2 is equipped with a new Panorama Assist Mode, which makes it easier than ever to create gorgeous panoramic landscapes. The Panorama Assist function helps you line up consecutive shots that you can later combine using the FH2s bundled software for impressive large-scale images.
The FH2s innovative Text Stamp feature, available in both Baby Mode and Pet Mode, lets you enter your subjects' names and birth dates so any time you take a picture, the image is stamped with the display name and precise age of the subject. There's also a Travel Date setting that lets you keep track of every moment of your vacation. Just enter your destination and dates of travel in advance, and the FH2 automatically generates information, including the date of shooting and local time during playback; you can also have the same information printed on your photos.
HD Movie Recording:
Go beyond still images with the FH2s HD video recording capabilities. All of your movies will benefit from the same great automated features and image optimization settings as your still photographs, so you can leave the camcorder at home and enjoy the freedom of fantastic still and live-action recording with a single device.
LUMIX Image Uploader:
Panasonic's exclusive LUMIX Image Uploader makes sharing photos and videos fun again. Simply select the photos or movies you want to share right on your camera, and connect the FH2 or memory card to your computer. The Image Uploader will launch automatically with easy to follow on-screen instructions to guide you through the process. Send photos to your Facebook profile instantly or upload videos to your YouTube account in seconds. You can even send an email with the appropriate URL to all of your contacts at once, letting everyone know when you've posted new content.
View Photos on Large-screen HDTV:
What's the fun of recording high definition videos or photos if you can't view them on the big screen" The FH2 is compatible with most HD-ready televisions, including the Panasonic VIERA HDTV. This allows you to share slideshows and videos with your family and friends in wide-screen format just by inserting the SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card into the TV port or by connecting your FH2 using a USB cable.
Sort and organize your photos in a snap with the exclusive PHOTOfunSTUDIO 6.0 bundled software. Not only will you have greater control over the new pictures you've taken with your FH2, but the software will also incorporate any older photos you've stored on your computer, no matter what kind of camera you used to take them. Start up and image read-in is super-fast, and you can use PHOTOfunSTUDIO 6.0 to upload photos to Facebook or send movies to YouTube as soon as you're finished organizing them.
The Panasonic LUMIX DMC-FH2 is a sleek, intuitive, compact point-and-shoot camera that offers plenty of power in a slim, portable body that is light enough to take with you wherever you go. Whether you're on vacation, attending a party or special celebration, at a school function, recital or sporting event, or just playing around with your kids in the backyard this is a great camera to record those memories. You get tons of the advanced features that you'd expect to find on more expensive cameras with the innovative usability functions that make taking incredible photos and videos virtually effortless. If you've been searching for a solid entry-level digital camera that delivers fully optimized, high quality images, look no further than the LUMIX DMC-FH2.