2017 Roundup: Consumer Long Zoom Compacts
Overall Winner: Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300
The FZ300 ticks most of the boxes for what a traveler wants in a bridge camera. Its constant aperture F2.8, 25-600mm equiv. lens is not something you'd expect to see in this price range, and the same is true for its weather-sealed body. It has a beautiful OLED EVF and a fully articulating OLED for composing 4K video or waist-level stills. Image quality is good for its class, and Raw support is appreciated. The AF system is among the best you'll find in a compact, as well. It's not the cheapest bridge camera, but the FZ300 is a great all-around product.
Most Reach: Nikon Coolpix P900
Sure it has a fairly tiny 1/2.3" sensor, no Raw capture, and is a mere $200 cheaper than the 1-inch sensor Panasonic FZ1000, but there is just something about the Nikon P900's 83X stabilized zoom lens that's worth calling out. Not only is the zoom reach insane, but the optical stabilization is robust enough that you can actually use it. For maximum zoom capabilities (the P900 is the longest zoom on the market), there is really no other option. Case in point: this video of the moon, shot with a Nikon P900.
Best Pocketable Option: Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS70/TZ90
While not a great choice for low light shooting, the ZS70 offers an impressive 24-720mm lens in a very compact body. Its autofocus system is very good, Raw support appreciated and its 4K video ability which comes along with useful features like Post Focus make it stand out from many of its peers. It's not perfect, though: The EVF is low resolution and 'tearing' might bother some folks (but it's still better than no EVF at all), and noise reduction can smudge fine details in JPEGs. Even so, for those who want good photos and top-notch video in a pocketable body, the ZS70 is our top pick.
|Misty morining by Claudi Lourens|
from My Best Photo of the Week
|Jet and Full Moon by dibilio57|
from Aircraft lights
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