These are some of the competitions of Panasonic DMC LX3:
Olympus Pen E-P1 with 17mm f/2.8 pancake lens if you like wide angle with fast lens
Pentax Optio W60 (if you want a more weather resistant compact)
The Olympus Pen E-P1 technically is a micro 4/3 D-SLR like camera with interchangeable lenses. It has a larger sensor than the typical compacts (2x crop factor), just like the Panasonic GH1. Its body size is slightly smaller than the Canon G10, and the pancake lens is quite compact. Its image quality is better than the compacts and can take HD 720p videos. But it has no viewfinder and no built-in flash, and its autofocus is slower than a typical D-SLR, more like a compact.
The Panasonic LX3 has a fast f/2 lens, low light performance is better than the Canon G10. But the LX3 is mainly a wide angle and normal perspective camera, it does not zoom out much. The Canon G10 is more versatile in terms of focal range.
The Pentax W60 is quite rugged, water and mud resistant, and you can rinse it in tap water if it gets dirty. Image quality and performance however are not up to the standard of its competitors.
So it depends on what you value most in a camera. Sounds like the LX3 has most of what you want.
Hello - Ive been partaking of your podcast for the last several weeks, and am enjoying the reviews & explainers. Personally I went through the digital SLR stage, but found lugging the big camera around really prevented me from using it as much & take inpromptu photos.. So Ive invested almost $1000 in high end point-n-shoots (Pana TZ3, FX37 - both dead since I drag them everywhere including sailing oceans) and now the ruggedized Olympus Stylus Tuff, which IMHO doesnt have nearly the quality of picture as the Pana's.
So here's my question: Ive become a big fan of wide angle, natural light, ad hoc people pictures.. The DMC LX3K looks just delicious. A little pricey, but I think it would fit the bill. Small enough to cargo pants pocket, yet fast enough to not have to use the flash. I also like to self document what I mess around in, so a small remote would be ideal, but havnt seen one of these in a PNS..
Opinions? Competitors? What am I missing?
Dave in Raleigh