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Compared to... Panasonic TZ2

Below you will find a studio comparison between the Panasonic DMC-TZ3 and its almost identical twin the TZ2 at ISO 1250, the highest manually selectable setting (and the highest you can shoot that doesn't use pixel binning). The TZ3 also offers a 'High Sensitivity' mode that goes up to ISO 3200, but uses pixel binning and interpolation to do so, producing a very low res (though still, technically, 7MP) image. To see a studio sample (with the lights turned off) click here.

Studio scene comparison (@ ISO 1250)

  • Panasonic DMC-TZ3: Program AE mode, ISO 1250, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.33 EV compensation

  • Panasonic DMC-TZ2: Program AE mode, ISO 1250, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.33 EV compensation
  • Lighting: Daylight simulation, >98% CRI
Panasonic DMC-TZ3
Panasonic DMC-TZ2
ISO 1250, 1/320 sec, F4.4
ISO 1250, 1/1000 sec, F4.5
2,554 KB JPEG
1,867 KB JPEG

Once again we see the result of a group of marketing men tying an engineer to a chair and slapping him until he agrees to increase the maximum ISO setting to a more impressive sounding four figures. It's not that these results are totally unusable - there are actually far worse offerings out there - but that they are almost unusable for most purposes (i.e. for prints above passport photo size).

The good news is that Panasonic has turned down the noise reduction a little, so the TZ3 output looks slightly less blurry and slightly more detailed, but as a consequence the image looks a little noisier, and the color bleeding is still there. It's OK for emergency use, but really, would you want an important photograph coming out looking like this?

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