Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5 Digital Camera Review$499.95
The Panasonic DMC-LX5 comes with a handful of color modes, as you might expect on a high-end point-and-shoot camera. Unsurprisingly, we found the most accurate mode to be Standard, though Smooth was also very accurate. Color error in Standard mode was 3.57, with a saturation of 106.4%. Color error in Smooth mode was 3.64, with a saturation of 96.88%. All of our testing, including the score for color accuracy, is based upon the camera's performance in Standard mode. More on how we test color.
Overall, the LX5 performed very well in our color accuracy tests, besting most comparable cameras. It was actually the simpler Panasonic ZS3 that managed to have the best color accuracy of the cameras selected for comparison. The table below demonstrates how the LX5 and its comparison models rendered various hues during our color testing.
The LX5 allows users to select from one of six color modes, one of three black and white modes, and a user-defined setting. These are the same options available on Panasonic's interchangeable lens G-series and many other Panasonic cameras. The color mode offerings are: Standard, Dynamic, Nature, Smooth, Vibrant, and Nostalgic. For black and white shooting, you can select: Standard B&W, Dynamic B&W, and Smooth B
If you want to set up a custom color mode, there is one memory slot for storing a set of custom color photography settings (My Film 1) and one slot for black and white settings (My Film 2). My Film 1 lets the user alter contrast, sharpness, saturation, and noise reduction—each along a five-increment scale. My Film 2 allows you to tweak black and white photos for contrast, sharpness, and noise reduction only. Finally, there is a multi-film option that lets you employ three film modes simultaneously.
Each individual color mode can be tweaked along the same criteria: contrast, sharpness, saturation, and noise reduction. To see these color modes in action, check out the sample photos page of our Panasonic DMC-G2 review.
There is also a separate "My Color Mode" on the mode dial, which gives the user access to color options like Expressive, Retro, Pure, Elegant, Monochrome, High Dynamic, Dynamic Art, Dynamic BW, Silhouette, Pin Hole, Film Grain, and Custom. The latter allows the user to tweak color, brightness, and saturation. These are more like art filters, however, and cannot be used in conjunction with the camera's numerous manual controls.