The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 is an 8Mp compact camera with a 4x optical zoom.

Everything on the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 compact camera has been implemented to make the art of digital photography easier - including a Quick AF function that begins the camera focusing before the shutter release button is even half depressed.

An Easy Zoom setting leaps to the full extent of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3's telephoto setting in a single ‘bound', there's a 2.5in LCD screen for shot composition and review that automatically adjusts brightness to contend with lighting conditions.

You can also select from 21 preset shooting modes on the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 - a no-nonsense digital compact camera sporting an 8.1Mp resolution and a 4x optical zoom.

Lumix range regulars include face detection for up to 15 faces in the frame, optical image stabilisation and an intelligent auto mode that automatically switches settings depending on the object placed before the lens. Though the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3's build is mostly plastic, and the camera feels lightweight, it's well disguised on our review sample by a metallic silver finish and mirrored lens surround.

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An impressive 330 shots are provided by the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 with each battery charge. Though manually selectable light sensitivity settings from ISO100 to ISO1600 are offered, up to ISO6400 is achievable via the High Sensitivity mode and a quality drop to 3Mp.

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 can take three shots per second in continuous shooting mode - 7fps if you don't mind a drop to 2Mp to achieve it. It also boasts a slightly higher than average 848x480 pixels video capability, making this a gimmick-free all rounder.

Lens experts Leica help ensure still images display a pleasing degree of detail, image processing favouring deep, well-saturated colours, and softness only really noticeable when trading resolution for higher light sensitivity.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3: Specs

  • 3x optical zoom
  • 8-megapixels
  • 2.5in, 230k dots screen
  • ISO100 to ISO6400
  • optical image stabiliser
  • 50MB internal memory, plus optional SD/SDHC card
  • 94.9x53.4x22.5mm
  • 118g
  • 3x optical zoom
  • 8-megapixels
  • 2.5in, 230k dots screen
  • ISO100 to ISO6400
  • optical image stabiliser
  • 50MB internal memory, plus optional SD/SDHC card
  • 94.9x53.4x22.5mm
  • 118g

OUR VERDICT

If you’re buying a sub-£150 camera for image quality alone, the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 would be the sensible choice.

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