Compared to...

Below you will find a studio comparison between the Panasonic DMC-LZ2 and the Canon SD400 (IXUS 50). We have included samples for the lowest and highest ISO settings for each camera (Panasonic LZ2: ISO 80 and 400, Canon SD400: ISO 50 and 400).

Studio scene comparison (Panasonic LZ2 @ ISO 80, Canon SD400 @ ISO 50)

  • Panasonic DMC-LZ2: Program mode, ISO 80, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +1.0 EV compensation
  • Canon PowerShot SD400: Program mode, ISO 50, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +1.0 EV compensation
  • Lighting: Daylight simulation, >98% CRI
Panasonic DMC-LZ2
Canon PowerShot SD400 (IXUS 50)
ISO 80, 1/125 sec, F3.3
ISO 50, 1/79 sec, F4
1,799 KB JPEG
2,051 KB JPEG
Noise, std dev: 1.4
Noise, std dev: 1.6

There's not a huge difference tonally between the Panasonic and Canon cameras (the minor color differences are due to manual white balance measurement differences). The Canon leans towards highly saturated reds, whereas the LZ2 has a slightly more natural tone. In terms of detail it's obvious the LZ2's lens is outperforming the little SD400, especially at the edges (though the LZ2 still has some sharpness fall-off towards the edges). Noise is pretty normal for a 5MP camera, and there isn't a huge difference between the two cameras, visually (though the Panasonic has slightly lower measurable luminance noise). The only problem here is that the image looks slightly over-sharpened, which has the effect of slightly exaggerating the amount of noise. That said, this is all-in-all a better result than I'd expected given the pricing and longer than average zoom range.