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Panasonic aiming to 'replace' DSLRs

Panasonic G5
Panasonic's new "DSLM" camera, which the company hopes will replace conventional DSLRs.

Panasonic is hoping to replace DSLR cameras with what it is dubbing "DSLM", or "Digital Single Lens Mirrorless" devices.

Speaking to TechRadar, Ichiro Kitao, Panasonic's director of digital imaging, said "We're aiming to innovate, to replace the DSLR category with mirrorless cameras.

"There's certainly enough potential to compete with entry level [DSLR cameras]," he said.

With the launch of the Panasonic G5, the company is hoping to market a new name for the category, away from the compact system camera name which has been predominantly used for the past couple of years.

DSLM, or Digital Single Lens Mirrorless, is the name it hopes will catch on around the world for the more advanced cameras in its line-up.


"Our message is that we want to grow mirrorless cameras more, so the name reflects that goal," Kitao said.

Panasonic cameras use Four Thirds sensors, which are smaller than those found in entry-level and enthusiast DSLRs, which use APS-C size devices. While Kitao admitted that Panasonic sensors were a "different world" from the full frame sensors found in pro-level cameras, he also said that there was enough potential for the cameras to appeal to professionals.

First to the market with compact system cameras back in 2008, Panasonic has since been joined by almost all of the major camera manufacturers in producing at least one mirrorless model. Currently, Panasonic accounts for the biggest market share of CSC cameras in the UK.