Tangential to Ed Taylor's G10 review below, I'd just like to make a point in passing about the zoom range on one of the G10's competitors, the Panasonic Lumix LX3.
Consider first the lenses that Sebastiao Salgado, one of the world's greatest living photographers, used for a great deal of his best and most famous work. While I don't know what he carries now, when I heard him interviewed in the late '80s he carried three cameras. In the customary fashion of many working photojournalists, he didn't change lenses on the cameras—rather, he used interchangeable lenses to "customize" each body, leaving one lens on one body all the time. He used two M6's and one R6. One M6 had a 28mm and the other a 35mm, and the R6 had a 60mm ƒ/2.8 macro. I don't know which 28mm or 35mm he preferred, but I believe they were the Elmarit (ƒ/2.8) and Summicon (ƒ/2) respectively.
That was it: 28, 35, 60.
Compare that to the 24mm–60mm ƒ/2–2.8 lens on the Lumix LX3.
Just a thought, in case you might be wondering whether the LX3's lens has "enough range" for you....
(I guess this is actually a rant. I just ran across a tirade by some wet-behind-the-ears tyro who was going on and on with great bitterness about how limited the LX3's range was, sure his creativity would be desperately crippled by it. Although, in fairness, in his case he was probably right.)
And if the LX3 hasn't entered your radar space yet, here's a link to Lawrence Ripsher's excellent, not-too-long review. Good readin'.
ADDENDUM: This just up: Michael Reichmann's review of the Panasonic LX3.
P.S. Some people don't like how I've expressed myself here in light of my rule against ad hominem (possibly because they were standing in the same vicinity where the arrow was aimed? If the shoe fits, and all that; still doesn't mean the arrow was aimed at them). But it's not "argument against the man" (ad hominem) when there's no "man." Jousting at ghosts is not the same thing as jousting. My slings weren't aimed at an identified, or identifiable, person. Wasn't named, wasn't quoted, wasn't located. Ergo all I'm decrying is an attitude.
You have to consider the market as a whole: like any other sales-driven specification, fixed-lens zoom ranges have been exaggerated grotesquely until practically all we have available to us, on either p&s cameras or "ultra-zoom" faux-SLRs, are swollen, physically unstable, overly slow monstrosities...almost none of which even have enough range (right, just for some of us) at the right end. In this context, when one solitary manufacturer (okay, one and a doppelgänger) comes out with a lens that generously wide and impressively fast, my inclination is to defend its choice against the darts of prejudice indiscriminately tossed at it by people who don't appreciate how unusual and brave a choice it is.
Lens range is just a choice, and anyone who doesn't like an offering can just choose something else...as long as there is something else to choose. Consider how many choices there are for someone who wants a 24mm f/2 on a digicam, and perhaps you can understand why I take a dim view of anybody who wishes it were a 35–XXXmm like everything else. —MJ