Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ150 Review
12.1MP | 25-600mm (24X) Zoom | $499 £475
The Panasonic DMC-FZ150 CMOS-powered 24X superzoom is a replacement for the slightly unloved FZ100 and incorporates a lower-resolution 12MP sensor that the company says will outperform its predecessor's 14MP chip. The camera retains a 25-600mm equivalent lens but now incorporating 'Nano Surface Coating' to mitigate the effects of internal reflections. And, just like its predecessor, the FZ150 retains the ability to record Raw images. The FZ150 also shoots 1080p60 HD movies in the recently-created AVCHD Progressive standard.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ150 key specifications:
- 12.1MP CMOS sensor
- 25-600mm (equivalent) zoom
- Articulated, 3in LCD screen with 460,000 dots
- Built-in EVF
- 1080p60 movies in AVCHD format
- Raw mode
- Weight (with battery): 528 g (1.16 lb / 18.62 oz)
- Dimensions: 124 x 82 x 92 mm (4.88 x 3.23 x 3.62 in)
The FZ150 comes with a rechargeable battery and charger (with a solid rating of about 400 shots per charge), USB cable, shoulder strap, lens cap with attachment string, lens hood and a small printed basic manual. On the CD you'll find a full manual, SILKYPIX Developer Studio 3.1 SE, PHOTOfunSTUDIO 6.5 BD edition (both for Windows) and a link to a trial version of video editor Super LoiLoScope. You'll need a mini-HDMI cable for connecting the camera to an HDTV and an SD/SDHC/SDXC card to supplement the camera's 70MB internal memory. Oddly enough, one of several accessories is a 1.7x telephoto lens for the FZ150 (you'll need an adapter as well), if the camera's maximum 600mm focal range doesn't get you close enough to your subject.
|These two images, taken from a fixed camera position at the wide and long end of the FZ150's lens, should give you an idea of what a 25-600mm effective zoom looks like.|
Like all superzooms, the FZ150 is equipped with an LCD and EVF (electronic viewfinder). The 3-inch, 460,000 dot LCD is articulated and useful for shooting overhead or from low angles. Better yet, the monitor folds into the camera to protect its surface from scratches. The EVF is really small but generally bright and can be used when sunlight makes the LCD difficult to use. Even though the camera's image stabilization works quite well, bringing the viewfinder to your eye when shooting at telephoto also provides additional stabilization.
The camera features plenty of functionality and customization options but once you get into the finer details, be prepared to be slowed down by scrolling through Panasonic's typically dense menus. The good news though is that there's a Quick Menu, which brings up the most often changed settings helps speed things along. A few of the camera's notable features include advanced scene modes, which allow you to fine-tune the selected mode. For example, under Portrait, you can choose a Soft Skin option (one of four), that will smooth and hide your subject's skin imperfections.
The new 3D mode captures a series of images and selects two, which are combined (left and right) to form an MPO image that can be viewed on any MPO compatible device. Contrast, sharpness, saturation and noise reduction adjustments, raw, face recognition, and the ability to tag and upload images to Facebook and YouTube by simply connecting the camera to the computer are only a few other FZ150 highlights. While the external controls are pretty straightforward and easy to access, even experienced shutterbugs should check out the FZ150's manual to delve below the surface of this feature-packed camera. Go to the internal main menu and you'll find no fewer than 5 'pages' of options in the Record section alone.
But Panasonic didn't stop with still image options. The FZ150 has a myriad of video features that make this camera equally adept at capturing movies, too. For more detail on the video features of the camera - and samples - turn to the performance and image quality page of this review.
Just in case there was any doubt in your mind, here's the definitive video proof that yes, a $50,000 cinema camera beats the pants off a $50 camcorder in a side-by-side test.
Photographers who fly frequently in the US may want to finally invest in that TSA Pre-check status: in standard security lines, cameras and all other electronics larger than a smartphone will need to be placed in a separate bin for screening.
Images have appeared which claim to show Nikon's forthcoming D850 DSLR, the development of which was announced this week. If genuine, the pictures indicate that the D850 will offer illuminated controls and a tilting LCD screen, but no built-in flash.
To celebrate the Daguerreotype Achromat 2.9/64 lens' successful Kickstarter campaign, Lomography has announced a chrome-plated version of the lens in Nikon and Canon DSLR mounts.
Nikon just released four new firmware updates, adding features and fixing bugs in the D600, D610, D750 and the KeyMission 80.
It probably hasn't made your landscape photography bucket list just yet, but there's a good reason to visit Idaho. Here are 9 must-visit locations in this beautiful state.
Oops... Adobe accidentally leaked their unfinished Lightroom-powered cloud-based photo editor 'Project Nimbus' to some Creative Cloud users yesterday.
Storm chaser and award-winning photographer Mike Oblinski just released his latest time-lapse, and it is absolutely stunning.
Looking to level up your video capture capabilities without buying a whole new camera? Blackmagic's Video Assist 4K is well worth considering, despite a few flaws and its lack of 4K/60p support.
We're big fans of Fujifilm's fast-growing GFX system, and the GF 110mm F2 lens is no exception. Positioned as the system's classic portrait lens, its optics are just as impressive with non-human subjects as well.
Nikon turns 100 years old today, and the company is celebrating with a wacky music video, some tributes to its history, and a new vision presented by president Kazuo Ushida.
Phottix just released the Premio Parabolic Umbrellas series, replacing their Para-Pro line with a stronger, deeper and better made set of parabolic umbrellas.
The Moto Z2 is Motorola's first dual-camera smartphone and, compared to its predecessor, comes with a number of improvements and new camera features.
Researchers at Stanford have revealed a new '4D camera system' built for robots. The system is based on the same light field tech that allowed Lytro cameras to refocus images after they were taken.
If you want 'beautiful rendition' from your lenses, follow this simple rule: only buy classic low-element prime lenses with lead glass elements—everything else is junk.
In an interview with CNBC, Leica Chairman Andreas Kaufmann said he dreams of a 'true Leica phone,' and hinted at what's next for the Leica and Huawei partnership.
Wildlife and nature photographer Peter Mather tells the story behind this exceptional shot of a mama grizzly and her cub searching for salmon in Yukon, Canada.
Popular YouTube channel TastyTuts has put together this 33-video Beginner's Guide to Adobe Photoshop—a godsend for anybody who wants to learn Photoshop from scratch.
The long anticipated replacement for the popular Rode VideoMic Pro is almost ready for shipping. The price of the upgraded VideoMic Pro+ will be £290/$300 when it goes on sale in mid-August.
A new iOS app called Explorest wants to help you find new locations to shoot. It's limited to Singapore for now, but the app is packed full of useful location scouting features.
Nikon's D850 development announcement is extremely light on details, so we assembled a wish list of upgrades and features we'd love to see.
Nikon has announced the development of the long-awaited replacement to its full-frame D810: the D850. Nikon says that the D850 will build on the strengths of its predecessor and offer 'new technologies, features and performance enhancements.'
Lens manufacturer Voigtlander has introduced a 65mm F2 macro lens for Sony E-mount that it says "rates as one of the finest in the history of Voigtländer."
The UK released a preview of their upcoming drone safety regulations, and it looks like drone pilots will have to both register their device and pass safety awareness tests.
National Geographic photographer Bob Holmes talks about light, and why you need to learn how to 'see' and not just 'look' at your subject.
Photographer Alessandro Barteletti shares the story behind his National Geographic Italia cover, shot with a 10-year-old DSLR and an iPhone flashlight.
Fashion catalog photographers in China have some next-level models to work with. In this video, you see one model hitting 30 poses in 15 seconds as the photographer snaps away.
Photographer Paul Adshead breaks down 11 photography-related smartphone apps he couldn't live without—from a pocket light meter to a lighting diagram app.
Fast-growing Chinese flash brand Godox is teasing a brand new flash trigger... for smartphones. The Godox A1 is a 'phone flash system' that can act as both flash and 2.4GHz trigger.
On July 12, Canon opened its newest Technology and Support Center, designed to serve the motion picture industry, in Burbank, CA. DPReview got a sneak peak and takes you behind the scenes.