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How to grab sharp shots quickly [Jan. 4th, 2008|02:51 pm]
Panasonic LX-2 User Community
Here's a tip I came across recently: I've been frustrated with the performance of the D-Lux 3 when it comes to catching people shots at social functions. People keep moving around so much that most of the time I end up with just blurred ghosts (which can produce pleasing results, sometimes).

The trick is simple: use the Sports mode under the Scene option on the dial. You'll get sharp shots (if a little flat, but this can be corrected somewhat in Photoshop Elements) more often than not.
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How to get good bokeh / depth of field everytime [Jan. 4th, 2008|02:49 pm]
Panasonic LX-2 User Community
This is for the newbies like me out there. I spent a good while trying to figure out how to achieve good depth of field / bokeh on a consistent basis with my D-Lux 3. Most of the time it seems to be a hit and miss affair. I recently came across to methods that has allowed me to hit the (soft) spot and get good results most of the time.

The first method is using Portrait mode under the Scenes option on the dial. This is great for those moments when you don't really have much time to switch the camera settings individually yourself. It doesn't work in Macro, thoughm so if you're taking pics of flowers you can try Method 2.

The second method is by switching the camera to Manual Focus using the slider on the side and then setting the distance appropriately with the joystick. As a beginner I've never touched the Manual Focus button because it intimidates me, but once I learned how easy it is to set fixed focus distances for street photography (set it to about 6 feet and the camera will focus on anything in that range while the others will be blurred), it's become my friend and is the mode I frequently use when shooting in the streets now.
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Shooting in 400 ISO with the noise of 100 ISO [Jan. 3rd, 2008|09:23 pm]
Panasonic LX-2 User Community
If you are shooting in low light or need faster shutter speeds you may want to shoot at ISO 400. However doing so with the LX-2 (or D Lux-3) results in higher noise. One way round this is to shoot RAW at 100 ISO but underexpose by 2 stops, raising exposure in Adobe Camera RAW by 2 stops to compensate.

--Click on the pictures to see full detail--

Here is a JPG shot at ISO 400:

Here is a RAW shot at ISO 100, 2 stops underexposed:

See how much smoother the RAW file looks? And yet the two photos were taken at identical shutter speeds and apertures.
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RAW Noise Conversion in Photoshop CS2 [Jan. 3rd, 2008|08:55 pm]
Panasonic LX-2 User Community
When shooting with the LX-2 one has the option to save as JPG or in RAW. Given that you get 5x more photos out of a card by shooting in JPG, why would you shoot RAW?

The answer is that you can get far better noise reduction and far more picture control by shooting in RAW and processing it yourself than relying on the camera to do it for you.

Below are two tiny segments of a 10 MP photo.



As you can see, the JPG is far noisier.

The settings I use are found in the DETAIL section of Adobe Camera RAW. This is the window that opens first when you open a RAW file in Photoshop.

Sharpness: 25
Luminance Smoothing: 90
Color Noise Reduction: 0

Luminance Smoothing is the big one for us as far as Noise Reduction is concerned. Sharpness and Color Noise Reduction can actually increase it!
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Panning with the LX2 is simple! [Jan. 2nd, 2008|06:16 am]
Panasonic LX-2 User Community

    Panning is a great technique to capture action and give the impression of speed and movement.  With the LX2's big LCD screen, this technique is easy to get results.  

The biggest tip is to reduce your shutter speed while attempting to capture a panning shot.  A shutter speed of 1/25th was used for the photo above.  I used the Shutter Priority mode.  Shutter speed will depend on the the speed of the object.  I've had good luck between 1/8th to 1/30th of a second on most common panning shots (bikes, cars, birds...).  I also leave the image stabilization on.

With your camera set up for a low shutter, find a location and subject that works for this type of shot.  I use my LX2 primarily to cover the cycling exploits of my local club.  The first step is to get focus on the subject before the desired location.  You can lock focus by pressing the shutter half way.  With focus locked, I pan the camera with the moving object and take the photo when I feel the time is right.  It's very important to continue panning even though you have pressed the shutter.  Like a good golf swing, follow through is important.  Try to keep a smooth pan while maintaining focus lock on the subject.  Think smooth thoughts.

That's it really.  Low shutter speed, focus lock and follow through are the biggest tips I can offer on panning.  Give it a shot!

Many thanks for getting this journal started.  This is a great camera that is often overlooked.

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How to reduce shutter lag (and get a picture the moment you press the button) [Jan. 2nd, 2008|10:46 am]
Panasonic LX-2 User Community

How to reduce shutter lag (and get a picture the moment you press the button):

- Set the camera to manual focus
- Set the camera to aperture priority
- Set the aperture to required depth of field
- Set Shake Reduction (OIS) to OFF or Mode1

This will give you shutter lag of 0.11 seconds.

Setting OIS to Mode 2 gives shutter lag of 0.23 seconds.

Using autofocus gives shutter lag (if shutter not already half pressed) of 0.75 seconds.

(figures from dpreview.com)

Some people have suggested the OIS should be turned off completely, but OIS 1 has no effect on shutter lag.

For autofocus, lag can be reduced by using a high speed autofocus mode. Go into the REC Menu and the AF MODE Sub menu and choose one of the two modes with an H next to them. This is a high speed focussing mode and focuses before updating the LCD screen.

One thing I would like to know is whether or not manual exposure speeds things up at all?


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How to order a genuine spare battery in the UK [Jan. 2nd, 2008|10:24 am]
Panasonic LX-2 User Community
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 How to order a genuine spare battery in the UK:

The batteries sold on Amazon etc are copies of doubtful reliability. I know from my Nikon the difference a real battery can makes vs a copy. It's hard to tell when they sell them because they givethe genuine part number then say "equivalent".

To get a real spare go to www.panasonic.co.uk, click on the online shop then click on Accessories.

The LX-2 doesn't have them listed as accessories so go to the LX-1 and choose the s005E battery.

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The Definitive Review [Jan. 1st, 2008|12:19 pm]
Panasonic LX-2 User Community
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DPReview.com's take on our camera:


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Welcome! [Jan. 1st, 2008|12:01 pm]
Panasonic LX-2 User Community
Welcome to the LX-2 User Community.

This is the place for tips and tricks and discussions on how to make the best of our little masterpiece.

Anyone may post so let's build something good together!

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