2017 Roundup: Consumer Long Zoom Compacts
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300
12.1 MP 1/2.3" MOS sensor | 25-600mm equiv. F2.8 lens | 4K video capture
What we like:
- Impressive zoom range and fast lens
- High-res OLED EVF
- 4K video capture
- Dust and weather-resistant
- Raw capture
What we don't:
- Single dial design
- Yellows can have greenish cast, affecting skin tones
- Pricey, considering the camera's relatively small sensor
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 is an update to the very popular FZ200. It retains the same 12MP sensor and fast 25-600mm equivalent F2.8 lens but adds a new image processor, weather-sealing and 4K video support.
Photos can be composed on either a 3" fully articulating OLED display or a high resolution (2.36M dot) OLED EVF. The FZ300 uses Panasonic's latest autofocus system and can shoot continuously at up to 12 fps with single AF and 6 fps in continuous AF. In addition to capturing 4K/UHD video at 30p, the FZ300 can also grab high quality 8MP stills using its special 4K Photo mode. Wi-Fi is built-in.
Image quality is typical of Panasonic compact cameras. Generally good color, though yellows have a greenish tint, which can negative affect skin tones. Noise reduction can be high in JPEGs, though the Raw option is helpful. High ISO performance is better than many of the other cameras in this class, though don't expect miracles.
The FZ300 fits into somewhat of a peculiar spot in this roundup. Its constant F2.8 maximum aperture gives it a substantial leg up over most of the other 1/2.3" sensor cameras listed here, as does its ability to capture 4K video. Its closest competitor is likely the Olympus Stylus 1s, which also has an F2.8 maximum aperture, albeit with a slightly larger sensor and less zoom range. In a lot of ways, the FZ300 is like a mini-FZ1000, offering many of the same standout specs and features. Though it has a smaller sensor than its big brother, this enables the FZ300 to offers a greater zoom range, and it's also weather-sealed, which the FZ1000 is not.
Price-wise, the difference between the two cameras is not astronomical, which is why if you're considering buying the FZ300, we recommend saving up a bit more and springing for the FZ1000. Though its lens is not quite as versatile as the FZ300's, and its body is not weather-sealed, the substantially larger size of the sensor in the FZ1000 will pay off in image quality.
|Forever Stalled by Domenick Creaco|
from The End of the Road
|Lost, But Not Forever by Domenick Creaco|
from Lost and found
Two years ago, CatLABS of JP announced a plan to save Packfilm from the dead. Now, it's announced it's giving up its efforts to better focus its resources elsewhere.
The GoPro Fusion is designed to make it easy to capture 360-degree video and stills. We took it out recently on a typically hot Seattle summer day to see what it can do.
We've got our hands on a full-production Nikon Z7 camera and have updated our gallery with additional samples.
A new Kickstarter campaign seeks funding for Chroma Chrono, a programmable RGB camera flash that emits multiple colors during long exposures.
Think Tank Photo has launched a new lineup of six dual-access, water-resistant protective lens cases it calls Lens Case Duo.
Canon and Nikon finally entered the full-frame mirrorless market this summer with the brand-new RF and Z mounts. Now that we've had some time with the cameras, we wanted to revisit our earlier predictions and take stock.
The devices' camera specs look pretty much identical to last year's iPhone X but under the hood a number of important improvements have been made.
Blackmagic Design has announced the public beta of its new Blackmagic RAW video codec. The company says the new format combines the benefits of shooting Raw video with the ease of use and smaller file sizes usually associated with non-Raw video files.
Serif, the company behind the Affinity suite, has announced the latest update for its mobile Photoshop competitor Affinity Photo for iPad.
The Atomos Ninja V external video recorder and monitor will be ready to ship at the end of this month. The 5.2in Ninja V is designed to provide a smaller option, while still offering many of the features of the larger 7-inch models.
Having shot with the camera, spoken to Canon and read the tea leaves, here's what DPR Technical Editor Richard Butler thinks the EOS R tells us about Canon and the RF's mount's future.
After last week's teaser, lighting manufacturer Profoto has announced its 'small big' new product. The B10 is designed to be used as studio flash head but in a very small body, and has a powerful continuous light source for videographers as well.
Konseen has launched Photo Studio, a new light box tent large enough to photograph people, as well as objects.
Seagate has introduced new high-capacity hard drives for Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices: the 14TB IronWolf and 14TB IronWolf Pro HDDs.
The case was first announced earlier this year as a Kickstarter campaign and comes with a range of features aimed at iPhone photographers.
Manfrotto has introduced a new two-in-one tripod to its Befree lineup. Called the Befree 2N1, this new addition is both a tripod and monopod in one and is available with both of Manfrotto's locking mechanisms.
This new high dynamic range editing software comes with an AI-powered Quantum HDR Engine for improved photo merging.
Apple has unveiled the next generation of its iPhone X in the form of three variants: the 5.8" iPhone XS and 6.5" iPhone XS Max with OLED screens, and the 6.1" iPhone XR with an LCD and single rear camera.
Ahead of the launch of the CamRanger II the company has announced a mini version of its wireless remote control system that it says has a longer range than the original in a body half the size.
Lens manufacturer Sigma has announced a trio of fast cinema lenses for full-frame camera systems, that it says will also be available in the future in the LPL mount for Arri’s large format camera system.
LumaPod is a a new tripod being funded on Kickstarter that takes just four seconds to set up and uses patented tension technology to keep your shots steady in a compact design.
X-Rite ColorChecker Video XL is an oversized color target for wide-angle, long distance, and aerial shooting.
ExperimentalOptics has launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund its second lens design, a 35mm F2.7 lens it claims is the world's 'smallest fastest pancake lens.'
The new XF 8-16mm F2.8 R LM WR and XF 200mm F2 R LM OIS WR are aimed at enthusiasts and professionals, and add considerable versatility to Fujifilm's growing XF lens lineup. We've been taking a look.
The Getty family is working to regain control of stock photo agency Getty Images, according to multiple reports published late last week.
The Phoneslinger line, a modular bag system for mobile photographers, has been launched on the Indiegogo crowdfunding platform.
CamRanger has announced the impending arrival of its CamRanger 2 wireless tethering and trigger system, complete with redesigned apps, updated wireless features, and support for select Sony and Fujifilm systems.
As well as high-resolution stills, the new Nikon Z7 also shoots 4K video and 120p HD video. We recently spent two days with director Chris Hershman, shooting a music video on the Z7 for pop artist Emily Blue.
London’s National Portrait Gallery has released the shortlist for its annual Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize, ahead of the winner being announced in October.