G100 Development story
2 : Downsizing vs. usability – from the designer’s point of view
Hello, my name is Hirayama and I am in charge of the product design of the LUMIX G100.
Simply put, the G100 is a camera that combines a compact body that is easy to carry around with the shooting functions and operability of a high-end model.
However, by simply imitating the design of a high-end model, it would be a difficult camera to use for general users. Therefore, the development team worked together toward the realization of "portability," "operability" and “a design that enhances shooting motivation”, which are all needs derived from user interviews.
The grip portion is what we struggled with the most during the design development. The bigger the grip, the relatively easier it is to operate, but by doing this, portability would be sacrificed. So, we prepared dozens of prototypes with slightly different sizes and shapes of the grip portion, and tested the ease of grip with various hand sizes. As a result, we were able to create a shape that combined portability and operability.
We were also very particular about the shutter button and front dial above the grip. With a camera of this size, many people shoot automatically and there are many cases where the dials are omitted or are laid out discreetly. We thought that the shooting performance inherited from the high-end models could not be fully utilized with those designs and also gave consideration to conducting the manual settings more easily. We arranged the shutter to the position where your index finger naturally touches when you hold the camera, and equipped a large-diameter front dial that you could operate with your finger around the shutter.
Vloggers are the main target users of the G100, but there are many people who transmit content as part of their job. We considered that increasing the shooting motivation of such people was an important role of the design, and pursued a reliable camera-like design that could take excellent images instead of an endearing casual look. This is also the reason why we followed the design of the S Series, which has already been widely acclaimed for its operability and reliability.
We also designed the tripod-type grip that is convenient for shooting vlogs with the G100. In addition to matching the appearance, we were also very particular about keeping the size, weight and operability that fit the camera. If you hold the actual grip, you will have already experienced its lightness and high rigidity. We also unified the operability with the current LUMIX cameras using the same red REC button. Furthermore, by applying a rough grain texture to the ergonomically shaped grip, it is prevents sticking even after long-term use, and enables comfortable shooting when used together with the lightweight and compact body.
We hope that the balance between portability, video performance, and user-friendliness of the G100 will be enjoyed not only by vloggers, who are the main target users, but also by people who wish to start video and photography from now on, and enthusiasts who already have a main video camera and need a better second camera.
G100 Development Story