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Old Aug 10, 2006, 9:29 AM   #1
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One of the first things that came to mind when the L1 and its price was first announced was "Have Panasonic made a mistake by not providing existing Pana users with an affordable upgrade path to a Panasonic DSLR ?". Having aimed the L1 squarely at the upper end of the market and seeing the amounf of interest (or lack of) that the L1 has created within the various Panasonic user forums principally due to its price I'd say that they have made an error in not announcing an entry level DSLR. Such a camera would have provided an incentive for existing users to take the first step with a panaleica based SLR. Instead they're looking at the alternatives available at the $1000 bracket and particularly appealing will be the Sony alpha, the new D80 and Olympus E500/E330. To me thats a shame and a lost opportunity, and once people start building up a system its very hard to swap.

Just my two cents, euros and pennies

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Old Aug 10, 2006, 9:51 AM   #2
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I agree, but if thhey made an affordable slr how would they sell the overpriced FZ50 with it's watered down features. I was really hoping to upgrade from my FZ20 to the next gen but that won't be the FZ50.
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Old Aug 10, 2006, 11:25 AM   #3
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HarjTT wrote:
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One of the first things that came to mind when the L1 and its price was first announced was "Have Panasonic made a mistake by not providing existing Pana users with an affordable upgrade path to a Panasonic DSLR ?". Having aimed the L1 squarely at the upper end of the market and seeing the amounf of interest (or lack of) that the L1 has created within the various Panasonic user forums principally due to its price I'd say that they have made an error in not announcing an entry level DSLR. Such a camera would have provided an incentive for existing users to take the first step with a panaleica based SLR. Instead they're looking at the alternatives available at the $1000 bracket and particularly appealing will be the Sony alpha, the new D80 and Olympus E500/E330. To me thats a shame and a lost opportunity, and once people start building up a system its very hard to swap.

Just my two cents, euros and pennies

Cheers

HarjTT
I thought the same thing at first "What was Pana thinking!!) and itis a lost opportunity for the onesof us who are thinking of upgrading to a DSLR right now. After thinking about it I've changed my mind though. After Panasentry into the DSLR marketa lot ofthe buying public, undoubtably took a wait and seeattitude. I don't think that mostpeople upgrade cameras as much as we on these forums do but consider a advanced p & s camera or DSLR a long term purchase.I believe that most buyers want something with a proven track recordof good preformance and don't have the advantage of combined knowledge that we on these forums do.

Looking at the big pictureI think I cansee what Panasonic wasthinking with their decisionto tackle the class of DSLR user that they have. If theyprove themselves by quality preformance, design and functionalty in the advanced class first and take that knowledge and thencome out with a competatively priced DSLRthey will have something to sell to the mass public with that track record.

If Pana had come out with an entry level DSLR first, where the price & function competition is so great anddid not please or preform up to expectationsthey could havehurt themselves with alarger chunk of the buying public. Pana would also have lostthe opportunity to test their new ideas with a more demanding class of user that is used to the analog design without riskingso many sales. Ifthe design and function decisions they have made for the L1 don't please or some how fail to preform in the advanced class they can redo the camera and start again, loosinga relativily few buyers.Loosing the first round inthe advanced classwhen you are new to the gameis some how more accetpable/understandable and would not alienatethe mass public buyers.

Does any of that make sence?

Don
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Old Aug 10, 2006, 11:44 AM   #4
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I thought the same thing at first as well. Like many people here, I thought that the L1 was way overpriced, I was concerned about picture quality, etc. I live in Japan currently, so I had a chance to try it out in a store recently. I gotta say, I'm quite impressed with it so far. I played around with it for maybe 20min., but that was enough time to convert me into a believer.

The L1 feels very professional in your hand. It's a bit heavy for my taste, but very comfortable to hold nonetheless. The menu system is quite extensive and well laid out.

As far as controls are concerned, everything is easily accessible through buttons or dials. No digging through menus to find a certain setting. It was a joy to use for the short time I had to try it out. This is really a photographer's camera and clearly aimed at that crowd.

As far as picture quality is concerned, I can't give a professional opinion as I only tried it in the store, but the colours looked natural, vibrant, sharp and overall very good under the conditions. Also, all of the samples I've seen looked very good. If I had that kind of money, I would definitely consider this camera
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Old Aug 10, 2006, 3:51 PM   #5
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Woops, I should have clarified my post a wee bit. I've no problem with the thinking behind the L1 at all and the reason why it's being realised and also at which group. This is a wee bit similar to Oly E-1 which Olympus aimed squarely at the top end professional market with the aim to make a big impression and have a flagship camera to build up the perception of Oly as a company that produced "out of the box" and high quality system. What i think they should have done was to announce an entry level DSLR either at the same time or a few months after the L1 was released. That way not only would they have been able to sell the L1 to their intended market but they have been able to take with them current FZ users into the Pana and 4/3 system.

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HarjTT

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Old Aug 10, 2006, 5:22 PM   #6
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Only my opinion and what do I know......but I do not think you can have a flagship 4/3 camera.....too much noise.....and they missed the boat by not having in camera IS....afterall they were very good at that.

Its not like I have not been wrong before.....but I do not think they made a good choice here....





Now the FZ50 seems nice to me......and the New Nikon D80 looks promising.
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