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Panasonic Introduces Face Detection on FX55 and FX33

Joining the growing line of face-finding cameras on the market are the new Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX55 and FX33 point-and-shoots. The 8.1-megapixel cameras tout a new Intelligent Auto Mode that includes face detection, a new Title Edit function, and new col

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July 24, 2007 – Joining the growing face detection-enabled camera market are the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX55 and FX33 point-and-shoots. The 8.1-megapixel cameras tout a new Intelligent Auto Mode that includes face detection, a Title Edit function, and are offered in a variety of colors. The Panasonic FX55 and FX33 will have suggested retail prices of $349.95 and $299.95, respectively, and will be available in September.

Prior to today’s announcements, Panasonic had yet to jump on the face detection bandwagon. The technology is already offered by its competitors Canon, Casio, Fujifilm, Olympus, Sony, and newcomer GE. Although a late entrant to the market, Panasonic upped the ante with a maximum of 15 human faces detectable by the cameras. The previous standard was nine to 10 faces. 

"Using the face detection feature that detects so many faces lets you take everything from a back-to-school portrait to entire soccer team, ensuring that all your subjects’ faces look crisp and clear," said Alex Fried, Panasonic National Marketing Manager of Optical Imaging, at a press conference. "Even if the subject is moving, the camera will still detect the faces."

Panasonic’s face detection system is a key component in its new Intelligent Auto Mode (iA), offered on the FX55, FX33, and FZ18 (also announced today). The iA mode engages face detection while activating an Intelligent Scene Selector that, as the name implies, automatically chooses an appropriate scene mode, such as Portrait, Scenery, Macro, Night Scenery, or Night Portrait.

Intelligent Auto Mode also uses Continuous Auto focus - another new feature - that focuses on subjects without the user having to press the shutter half-way first, thus lessening shutter delay, explained Panasonic representatives. The system also engages Panasonic's Intelligent Image Stabilization feature, included in all 2007 Lumix cameras, which compensates for camera shake and moving subjects.

Both the Panasonic Lumix FX55 and FX33 boast an 8.1-megapixel count ; an increase from the 7.2-megapixel FX30. The FX55 has a 3-inch, 230,000-pixel LCD screen while the FX33 has a 2.5-inch, 207,000 pixel monitor. Each are fitted with a wide 28mm Leica-branded DC lens and have 3.6x optical zoom.

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The cameras include a Venus Engine III processor that supports a High Sensitivity mode of ISO 6400 and a 7 fps burst rate at a reduced 2-megapixel image size. The cameras also include a Title Edit function, a new feature that attaches text to photos.

The Panasonic FX55 and FX33 are offered in new colors. The FX55 will be available in silver, black, and pink, while the FX33 will be offered in silver, black, blue, and brown. Additionally, there is an optional underwater housing case for the FX33.

Key Features:

3.6x optical zoom Leica DC lens

New Intelligent Auto Mode: Intelligent Scene Selector, Face Detection, Continuous Auto-focus

New Title Edit

FX33 Sample Photos

**FX55 Sample Photos


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