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Who needs California when you can be in Birmingham? That's Panasonic's attitude. After surprising the camera world by not announcing a new Micro Four Thirds snapper at US photo show PMA in Anaheim, Panny has debuted two new G-series models at the Focus on Imaging show in Birmingham -- and we've tried them both out. This one here is the new Panasonic Lumix DMC-G10.

It's the latest camera to support Micro Four Thirds, the lens format developed by Olympus and Panasonic that removes the moving parts from inside a traditional digital SLR, making the body smaller. The G10 is the entry-level model in Panasonic's Micro Four Thirds range. Panasonic also launched the Lumix DMC-G2 at the same time, meaning there are now five Micro Four Thirds snappers in the company's stable. The older models are the DMC-G1, DMC-GF1 and DMC-GH1.

The G10 packs a 12.1-megapixel Live MOS sensor and new Venus Engine HD II processor. It shoots 720p high-definition video in the AVCHD Lite format.

The G10 is essentially the G2 without the cool flip-out touchscreen. It still packs the same features, like a dust-reduction system, face recognition that can register up to three faces, and assorted scene modes.

The G10 isn't to be confused with the Canon PowerShot G10, but they do target a similar market, albeit from different directions. Both are aimed at enthusiastic amateurs or intended as second cameras for prosumers, with the Canon camera offering a more compact size and the Panasonic snapper offering swappable lenses. Let us know in the comments section below which one you'd go for.

But, before you do anything else, click 'Continue' to see the G10 from all angles in our gallery of hands-on shots, and look out for a review soon.

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You can compose your shots with the electronic viewfinder or large, 76mm (3-inch) live-view screen, offering a whopping 460,000-dot resolution. The G10's controls include a quick-menu button to call up common shooting features, and a shoulder dial for changing exposure settings and scrolling through menus.

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The 'iA' automatic-mode button has been moved to the top of the camera. The mode wheel offers manual, shutter- and aperture-priority, and program modes.

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Pricing for the G10 is yet to be confirmed, but it's set to be the cheapest Micro Four Thirds model so far.

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