Panasonic has, in Japan, introduced its new DMC-L1 DSLR that is compabitible with lenses from Leica and Olympus.

The announcement confirmed several features that have been hotly anticipated, like the specifications on the bundled Leica lens, Optical Image Stabiliser, and live preview on the LCD.

The Leica D Vario-Elmait 14-50mm lens features a maximum aperture of f2.8-3.5, and provides a focal range of 28mm to 100mm on a 35mm equivalent.

Two OIS modes ensure that taking sharp pictures even in low-light conditions is possible. The first mode constantly detects and follows movement to ensure that the image in the LCD and viewfinder is clear, while the second mode stabilises the image when the shutter button is pressed.

The L1's sensor follows the Four Thirds standard and offers 7.5 megapixels of resolution.

The camera also incorporates a Live View function to display the image on the rear LCD. This also comes in handy for manual focusing, as an image can be enlarged in the 2.5-inch frame for more precise focusing.

Although pricing for the new camera has not officially been released, one Japanese website is reporting that Panasonic was discussing figures in the range of €1800 in Japan — rather high if the L1 is to be marketed to the consumer rather than the professional.