Two years on from the Lumix DMC-LX5, Panasonic refreshes its flagship compact camera series with a class-leading fast Leica lens and 11fps burst mode. Read the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7 review...
Just like the LX5, the Lumix DMC-LX7 uses a multi-segment metering system with 23 points. Whether in strong daylight or low-contrast light, the camera is quick to latch onto a subject. When the light is really low, the AF assist lamp is used to aid focusing, which is helpful for close-range subjects.
For greater control over autofocus, spot focus can be used, the size of which can be adjusted to any one of four settings. The largest size fills the majority of the frame, while the smallest covers around 3%, which enables precise work. With the smallest size selected, the spot can be chosen from any one of 713 areas, navigated by the four-way D-pad. I would have liked to see the touchscreen employed here, as featured in Panasonic’s Lumix DMC-TZ30 and its CSCs, because touch AF speeds up selection of the spot no end.
One advantage of the LX7’s small sensor is its 1cm macro mode, when the camera is set to its widest 24mm focal length. The macro AF mode can be found on the switch on the lens. For manual focusing, the new ND/focus button on the rear of the camera is helpful. Push left or right and focus assist ensures it is easy to view the point of focus.
AF tracking works well for everyday images, but is not designed to be used for the fast and erratic movements of most sports. Handily, tracking AF is available in the 5fps high-speed burst mode and also full time in video recording.