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This camera's strong points are the small size and excellent build quality, which make this camera a joy to use when travelling. The 14mm pancake lens kit slips easily into a jacket pocket ready for use as and when you require it.
When the GF2 is used within its comfort zone, it can yield images with excellent clarity and tonal range, making this an ideal travel landscape camera. Images taken at higher ISOs aren't terrible, but noise levels are higher than its DSLR competition, which may put off those looking for a camera for activities such as street photography in low light.
Those who use touch screen devices such as the iPhone should feel right at home (though the GF2's screen isn't quite as responsive), whereas users of more traditional cameras and devices may find it a little frustrating at first. Still I think the compromise is worth it for the slimmer, sleeker design. It's just a shame features that will suit the enthusiast more, such as film modes and flash compensation have been cut too.
With the Panasonic GF2 price at £600 for the 14-42mm lens kit, and GF2 price of £630 with the 14mm pancake lens, the camera may seem a little expensive. Prices at the launch do tend to be artificially high, as the GF2 price is around £100 dearer than the competition from Sony, for example. If the price drops in time, it could make a decent value choice for those who enjoy the simple design and touch screen interface.
The excellent build, sleek, compact design and touch screen interface are very appealing. Images are great at low sensitivities, unfortunately the performance at higher ISOs doesn't equal the latest competition. If the Panasonic GF2's image quality was assessed soley on the basis of the camera's output in good light and at low sensitivity settings, it would garner a significantly higher score.
However, the real world isn't like the perfectly illuminated photographic studio and we must look at how the camera performs in the range of conditions in which an enthusiast or novice may wish to use it. Those who want a camera to record well lit landscapes encountered on holiday or when enjoying a bike ride will be pleased with the results.
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