Panasonic’s Lumix CM1 is a smartphone with a high-end camera with a 28mm Leica DC lens and a 20 megapixel, 1 inch image sensor. The company introduced the Lumix CM1 in September, and now Panasonic says it’s bringing the camera phone to the United States… for a rather steep price.
An unlocked Panasonic Lumix CM1 will sell for $999.
The smartphone features a 4.7 inch full HD display, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, and a microSDXC card slot. It has a 2600mAh battery and supports WiFi, Bluetooth, and 4G LTE.
It’s the camera that makes this device stand out though. CNET has details (and sample images) which should give you a better idea of what to expect from this camera. But long story short, it probably takes better pictures than whatever phone you normally carry.
On the one hand, it might be more cost effective to buy a separate high-end camera and a decent smartphone. But the appeal of the Lumix CM1 is at least in part due to the idea of always having a good camera with you: while you might leave your DSLR at home, odds are that you take your smartphone with you whenever you leave the house.
28mm must be the “35mm-equivalent” of the lens. I’m sure it isn’t really a 28mm lens. That would make it a very “zoomed in” lens (around 75mm).
Most phones have lens with a 35mm-equivalent of 30-35mm.
Another observation is that it has a maximum aperture of f2.8. The iPhone 6, and the Galaxy S5 have f2.2. A very poor representation of Leica’s reputation. Not that max aperture has much to do with quality, but Panasonic wouldn’t have painted Leica’s name on the lens if they didn’t want to get into a dick-measuring contest.
The CM1 has a 1″ sensor, the iPhone 6 has a 1/3″ (diagonal). That means six iPhone6 sensors can fit in the area of this phone’s sensor. This is the equivalent of more than 2.5 stops of exposure, in other words with the same amount of ambient light the iPhone6 has to be at ISO600 to match exposure of the Panassonic CM1 at ISO100. Comparing to the iPhone6 the CM1’s f-stop equivalent is around f1.2! Also the CM1 has 20MP vs the iPhone’s 8MP, let that sink in for a moment.
I made a mistake, a 1″ sensor has the same total area of nine(9) 1/3″ sensors translating to over 3 stops of exposure.
Sure, but the size of the sensor doesn’t allow for a depth of focus as small as an f1.2 lens would afford.
Although, I agree that the lens does let an amazing amount of light in. This is very important in a camera phone. My Note 2 is terrible, exposures are way too long, and images are noisy due to the phone using really high ISOs.
I wish Nikon would get into the smartphones, and offer a CX-sized sensor (1 inch). I’m a Nikon fan, but not really a Nikon-1 fan. But they are definitely in a position to offer interchangeable lenses for 1-inch sensors.
It would be a great idea to offer a phone, with a case to allow mounting of lenses. But the case would have to have some kind of lens to “cancel out” the phone’s built in lens (if such a thing can be done).
Yeah but then you get into the problem of carrying around lenses which most people will not be comfortable with. On the other hand, if we assume 8MP is an acceptable resolution, 20MP allows already for a 2.5X digital zoom.
There are small teleconverters for the iPhone out there, I’d say one of those at around 4X is probably the best solution.
I wouldn’t carry around lenses everyday. It just enables me to convert my phone into a more functional camera for events I would normally carry my SLR.
You’re right, a very high resolution sensor does help alot in cropping, or using digital zoom.
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