(FT5) Panasonic G3 with lens for $649.

Image on top: The Panasonic G2.
We just learned from our sources that the Panasonic G3 with 14-42mm kit lens will be priced at $649. That’s $150 less than the price of the Panasonic G2 (original launch price in March 2010).
As we already told you the major changes will be the new 16 Megapixel sensor with FullHD recording and the new more compact design (with focus on touchscreen controls). There will be no other big changes. Announcement is expected around May 11/12. The new Panasonic lenses will be announced in late August only.

Links:
– The current Panasonic G2 at Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay.

(FT4) Panasonic will announce it’s first compact (collapsible?) lenses within this year.

A mirrorless zoom lens size comparison made by Serious compacts.

As you already know Panasonic will not announce new lenses along the Panasonic G3 (press release on May 11). The 25mm f/1.4 m43 lens and other lenses will probably come in late summer only. We have been also told that Panasonic will follow Olympus route and realize new compact (collapsible?) zooms. Our sources are pretty sure they will release them within 2011. We have no specs yet. It may be not an amazing news but it was about time that Panasonic reduces the size of their zooms. I guess this should be one of the advantage of the m43 system over the NEX and NX systems….to have smaller lenses!

If you know something more drop us an anonymous message using the contact form on the right sidebar. Thanks!

Olympus is currently offering two collapsible lenses:
The 14-42mm kit lens (direct links to Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay).
The 9-18mm wide angle zoom (direct links to Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay).

Reminder -> Rumors classification explained (FT= FourThirds):
FT1=1-20% chance the rumor is correct
FT2=21-40% chance the rumor is correct
FT3=41-60% chance the rumor is correct
FT4=61-80% chance the rumor is correct
FT5=81-99% chance the rumor is correct

Happy Easter!

I am right now traveling back from my home in Antwerp to the the home in the middle of the Alps. I will be back online late at night. In the meanwhile you can take a look on rumors posted on the partner websites:
– A new Pentax teaser (mirrorless camera?) at MirrorlessRumors.com
– A new Sony mirrorless camera at SonyAlphaRumors.com.

I wihs all of you a Happy Easter with your families. I hope you can have a nice time and a nice rest!

P.S.: A special Thanks goes to the people that met me in Antwerp!

(FT5) UPDATED: There will be fast m43 lenses and new Four Thirds products too.

Image on top: The Olympus E-30 that could be replaced by a new model in 2011.

The chinese website Tech.sina interviewed the ex Olympus chief Mr. Watanabe (Click here to read the google english translation). The translation is quite terrible so I would be glad if some Chinese reader could confirm the news I am going to post here. Mr Watanabe added following interesting info:
1) Mr. Watanabe mentioned that Oly understands that consumers are waiting for large aperture M4/3 lenses, please look forward to this as Oly will bring out a few products that responds to this request. 43rumors note: The new bright lenses should be announced in late June.
2) There will be new Four Thirds product too. Both the single digit and double digit series will continue. The triple digit series has been officially replaced by the PEN cameras. 43rumors note: We heard the Olympus E-30 has been discontinued (Check at: Amazon, B&H, Adorama, Olympus US store, FocusCamera, eBay). So this could be the first camera to be replaced by a new model.
3) Watanabe believes the Fuji X100 is a good product but Olympus will not develop a similar product. 43rumors note: Fuji is a Four Thirds group member but has not released any 43 product yet. The Fuji X100 is available for preorder at J&R (Click here), Adorama (Click here), Amazon UK (Click here) and Digitalrev (Click here) and if you are willing to pay a huge extra than you can buy them in Stock on eBay (Click here).
4) Like Pentax did also Olympus will offer more color option in future cameras. 43rumors note: The Pentax K-r series has been quite popular because of the huge color options.

UPDATE: Our chinese readers helped us to highlight a few other points:
5) This P&E show in China will be focused on M4/3 as Olympus think China is a still a virgin market for EVILs (less than 10% market share)
6) Mr. Watanabe mentioned that Olympus is a camera manufacturer, unlike Sony and Panasonic who makes lots of consumer electronis products, so Oly products will be more like a real camera instead.(when being asked what he thinks of Oly EVILs might be more competitive than SONY or Pana etc. EVIL products)
7) Mr. Watanabe mentioned that XZ-1 has been selling really well world wide. Oly is happy.

I have to admit that I didn’t expect Olympus to continue the E-XX series. Let’s hope Olympus will not let us wait to much before to see some of the mentioned new products!

P.S.: An update about the not yet available Samyang 35mm f/1.4 Four Thirds lens. Samyang delayed the shipment start from March to April. That’s why you can’t find it on eBay yet. It should be available soon under the different names (Click on it to see the search results on eBay):
Samyang Walimex Rokinon Opteka Falcon Vivitar Bower

Reminder -> Rumors classification explained (FT= FourThirds):
FT1=1-20% chance the rumor is correct
FT2=21-40% chance the rumor is correct
FT3=41-60% chance the rumor is correct
FT4=61-80% chance the rumor is correct
FT5=81-99% chance the rumor is correct

The Megapixel race (Sony making a NEX-7 with 24 Megapixel)

Panasonic is going to announce the new G3 with 16 Megapixel in May. If you need one more explanation why Panasonic and Olympus are not going to stick at 12 Megapixel you might read this: We have been told that Samsung will launch a 18 Megapixel NX20 and NX200 in Summer and Sony’s new NEX-7 will have…drumming….a 24 Megapixel sensor!

As you see the Megapixel racing is still ongoing and it doesn’t sound like there is an end insight. Maybe next year Panasonic will make a 20 Megapixel sensor for the GH3?

More info about the upcoming cameras from the competition
NX20 and NX200 at MirrorlessRumors (Click here).
NEX-7 at SonyAlphaRumors (Click here).