Panasonic has launched the Lumix DMC-TZ6 that offers 12x optical zoom and a Leica DC VARIO ELMAR 25mm ultra wide angle lens that's equivalent to 25mm to 300mm on 35mm film cameras.

The 10-megapixel model gets Panasonic's "Intelligent Auto" mode that activates AF tracking, intelligent exposure, scene selection, optical image stabiliser, digital red-eye correction and face detection at the press of one button on the top of the camera.

Panasonic says all this auto-wizardry leaves the user "free to simply compose the shot and press the shutter button" seemingly taking any kind of tech know-how, photography knowledge or thought out of the process.

With Venus Engine IV processing, the TZ6 can shoot 6.5 shots per second in a certain mode, can capture up to ISO 6400 and features a 2.7-inch 230,000 dot resolution LCD.

The compact camera can record video at 30 frames per second in either WVGA (848 x 480), VGA (640 x 480), or QVGA (320 x 240) resolution in 16:9 format.

Available from April 2009, the TZ6 will be available in a choice of black or silver, no pricing revealed.