By Patrick Avenell

Panasonic has offered a sneak peak at two of the new compact cameras in its 2012 Lumix range. One is a premium Micro Four-Thirds system camera aimed at enthusiasts while the other is 3D compact camera with Full HD video.

Describing the new DMC-GX1 compact system camera is Panasonic group marketing manager, Lumix, Alistair Robins.

“This is the camera that G Series followers have been waiting for,” he exclaimed. “The first in the premium GX line, it excels in both its design and feature set. It offers the 16-megapixel Live MOS sensor introduced in the G3, and is available in silver and black with a stylish rangefinder design and carefully crafted body and dials.”

“The DMC-GX1 has a built-in flash, and a newly-developed optional Live View Finder. Enthusiasts will also appreciate features such as the ability to customise the camera by assigning their own personal settings; and Level Gauge which displays the horizontal or vertical angle of view on-screen.”

The new Panasonic DMC-GX1.

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Also unveiled by Panasonic is the DMC-3D1, which is described as the “world’s smallest 3D photo and 3D video digital compact camera”.

This camera has two 25mm ultra-wide lenses with 4x optical zoom, which can capture 3D images at 8 megapixels. For 2D images, the sensor is expanded to 12 megapixels. For both 2D and 3D video shooting, the camera films at Full HD.

“This new camera offers consumers some exciting benefits in both 3D and 2D shooting,” said Lumix product manager Aki Yamamoto. “Capture your own dynamic 3D stills and movies and watch them on your 3D TV. 

“Or, in 2D, shoot still images and a movie simultaneously using the two lenses — it is even possible to capture two separate angles of view at the same time.”

Yamamoto reported that this camera features a 2D/3D switch, which users can toggle between to choose which mode to shoot in.

Panasonic's DMC-3D1.

Pricing for both cameras is not yet known, with local availability described as early 2012.