Panasonic announced on Friday the 12MP Lumix DMC-G1, the world’s first camera based upon the new Micro Four Thirds standard. Announced in August by Olympus and Panasonic, the micro four thirds standard allows for reduced size and weight in both camera bodies and camera lenses by removing the mirror box from the lens design. Sacrificing a true to life optical viewfinder for a mirror-less Live View electronic viewfinder, the distance from the lens mount and the image sensor (flangeback distance) has been cut in half. The lens mount itself has also been decreased by 6mm. Smaller flangeback distance and smaller lens mount = Lighter cameras and smaller lenses. No more lugging around a 10lb gear bag as the new G1 weighs in at a mere 385 grams (0.85 lbs) and has shrunk 6-8mm in size; while still retaining the overall shape, feel, and performance of a heavier, full-bodied DSLR. Sweet! It is expected in the US in November 2008. The folks over at Imaging Resource got their hands on a pre-production model and have done a hands-on review. Click on the link to see how this new lightweight contender performs.