Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 Review
Panasonic - the company that is more than any other responsible for the renaissance and continuing success of the 'big zoom' bridge camera - launched the original 'Travel Zoom' TZ1 back in February 2006. The formula - a big zoom on a small camera - isn't exactly new, but the combination of Leica's lens design expertise and Panasonic's technology (image stabilization, fast performance) made the TZ1 the first serious alternative to bigger 'SLR-style' super zooms. And now the TZ1 has been superceded by two models with a new 28-280mm equiv. lens, the TZ2 (6MP, slightly lower spec) and the camera on test here, the TZ3. As well as the new wide lens the TZ3 also ups the sensor resolution to 7 megapixels, increases the screen size and throws in a few new features. The big question is, has Panasonic managed to improve some of the image quality issues that dogged the otherwise superbly capable TZ1? Let's find out, starting as usual with the headline specification:
- 7.2 million effective pixel / 8.5 million pixels total 1/2.35" CCD
- 10x (28-280mm equiv.) Leica DC Vario-Elmarit optical zoom
- MEGA OIS image stabilization
- Larger sensor for 28mm equiv. angle of view at 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9 aspect ratios
- Venus III Engine processor
- Fast Linear autofocus system
- High Resolution (230,000 pixel) 3.0-inch LCD
- Movies up to 840 x 480 pixels (WVGA) @ 30 fps
- 20 scene modes plus Intelligent ISO mode
TZ3 (and TZ2) vs TZ1: Key changes
As is the case with most of Panasonic's Lumix models the TZ1 is available in either silver or black (though this may not be the case for every country and / or every retailer).
- Wider (and shorter) 28-280mm (equiv.) lens range (TZ1 was 35-350mm)
- Built in lens cover (TZ1 had a lens cap)
- Smaller and lighter camera
- Increased sensor resolution (TZ3: 7MP, TZ2: 6MP, TZ1: 5MP)
- Larger 3.0-inch screen (TZ3 only)
- Intelligent ISO mode
- Clipboard function
- ISO 1250 at full size (TZ1 was 'only' ISO 800), High Sensitivity mode now to ISO 3200
- White balance adjustment and extra 'Shade' WB preset
- Slightly improved burst mode (TZ3 only)
- Slightly better battery life
The TZ3 is available in three colors; blue, silver and black (though this may not be the case for every country and / or every retailer).
|Street price|| US: $330
• 1/2.35 " Type CCD
• 3072 x 2304
• 640 x 480 @ 30 / 10fps
|File formats||• JPEG (Exif 2.21)
• QuickTime Motion JPEG
• 28-280mm (35mm equiv)
|Image stabilization||MEGA OIS: mode 1 / 2|
|Digital zoom||Extra optical zoom (4:3: 12x for 5MP, 15x for 3, 2, 1, 0.3MP, 3:2: 12.6x for 4.5MP, 15x for 2.5MP, 16:9: 13x for 3.5MP, 15x for 2MP)|
|Focus||• Auto Focus system
• Normal / Macro (dial)
• Continuous AF on / off
|AF area modes||• 1 / 9 point
• 1 / 3 point high speed
|AF assist lamp||Yes|
|Focus distance||• Normal: 50cm - infinity (wide) / 200cm - infinity (tele)
• Macro / Simple mode / Intelligent ISO / Motion picture / Clipboard : 5cm - infinity (wide) / 200cm - infinity Tele (except tele end)
• 100cm - infinity (Tele Macro at tele end)
|Metering||• Intelligent Multiple
• Center weighted
|ISO sensitivity||• Auto
• ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
• ISO 800
• ISO 1250
• High Sensitivity mode ISO 3200
|Exposure compensation||• +/- 2EV
• 1/3 EV steps
|Exposure bracketing|| • +/- 1/3EV -1EV
• 3 frames
• 8-1/2000 sec
|Aperture||F3.3 / 8.0 (Wide: 2 steps) F4.9 / 11 (Tele: 2 steps)|
• Program AE
|Scene modes||• Portrait
• Soft Skin
• Night Portrait
• Night Scenery
• Self Portrait
• Starry Sky
• Aerial photo
• High Sensitivity
• Baby 1 & 2
|Self timer||• 10 or 2 secs|
|Continuous shooting||• Full-Resolution Image, 3 frames/sec or 2 frames/sec|
|Image parameters||Standard, Vivid, Cool, Warm, Natural, Black & White, Sepia|
• Auto/Red-eye reduction
• Forced On
• Slow Sync/Red-eye reduction
• Forced Off
• Range: 0.6 - 4.2m (wide) 1.0 - 2.8m (tele)
|LCD monitor||• 3.0-inch Polycrystalline TFT
• 230,000 pixels
• Field of view 100%
• DC in
• AV out
|Storage||• 12.7MB built-in memory
• SD / SDHC / MMC card compatible
|Power||• Li-ion battery pack
• Optional AC adapter
|Weight (excl batt)||232 g (0.51lb)|
|Dimensions||105 x 59.2 x 36.7 mm (4.20 x 2.37 x 1.47 in)|
|Perfection in Repetition by Nilesh Trivedi|
from Your City -Repetition
|a century before powerpointP1540926 by nt35|
from Books - Macro only
|Red splash by millan|
|1958 Edsel-8060 by vbuhay|
from E is for...
Fujifilm's first 1:1 macro lens for the X-system gives a 122mm equivalent view of the world. We gave it a go shooting close-up subjects as well as some portraits – take a look at how it performs when paired with the X-T2.
According to a Reuters report, US Congress is urging US companies to sever ties with Chinese manufacturers of communication equipment.
A firm launch date is still forthcoming, but in the meantime a sample reel from Kodak's new Super 8 camera has been released.
HTC's newest handset, the HTC U11 Eyes, improves on the standard U11 by slapping a dual camera on the front for 'portrait mode' selfies with real-time bokeh simulation.
Missile scare notwithstanding, we spent a lovely few days in Hawaii shooting with Sony's newest APS-C E-mount lens. See how it measures up capturing the spectacular scenery that the Aloha State is known for.
Now that we've completed our review of Panasonic's Lumix DC-G9, we've updated its entry in our Best Cameras Under $2000 and Best Cameras for Sports & Action buying guides.
Hasselblad has introduced its next-generation multi-shot camera body, built to shoot 400-megapixel photos by using sensor-shift technology to combine up to six exposures into a single monster image measuring 23200 x 17400 pixels.
CVS is banning digitally altered beauty imagery on its store-brand beauty products, and plans to mark other brands' images as "Digitally Altered" if they're not up to snuff by the end of 2020.
Canon has announced that it will introduce a series of printers that allow users to refill the ink tanks themselves—a surprising shift that could, in theory, save customers quite a bit of money.
Adventure and lifestyle photographer Lucy Martin put together a useful little video that goes over her 18 favorite Lightroom shortcuts—a great guide for beginners.
Following a series of allegations of sexual misconduct against Bruce Weber and Mario Testino, magazine publisher Conde Nast has severed ties with both of the famed fashion photographers, and released a code of conduct for future photo shoots.
Photographer Christopher Payne captures the 'colorful world of craft and complexity' you'll find in the General Pencil Company's factory in Jersey City... and almost nowhere else.
A new feature in the Google Arts & Culture app compares your facial features to its database of thousands of artworks, finding your fine art "doppelganger."
Recently, we spent a day in Los Angeles with photographer, cook and food blogger Kylie Mazon. Join us and see how Kylie approaches the challenge of shooting lifestyle and promotional images for a downtown hotel with the Canon EOS M6.
Leica has announced a pair of short telephoto lenses for its SL full-frame mirrorless camera. The APO-Summicron-SL 75mm and 90mm F2 ASPH lenses feature an apochromatic design to reduce chromatic aberration, one aspherical element and minimum focusing distances of around 0.5m.
The Panasonic G9 is the brand's top-tier stills camera. We've updated our already large sample gallery with even more photos to enjoy.
The latest product of Huawei's collaboration with Leica is a smartphone with a great all-around imaging feature set that left us very little to complain about.
In this quick video, award-winning travel photographer Bob Holmes shares nine of his most basic and straightforward tips for finding great images, even when you're in a rut.
Gudsen has launched a new gimbal that’s aimed at mirrorless photographers. With a payload of 3.9lbs/1.8kg, the new Moza AirCross can provide stabilization to a mirrorless body even fitted with a cinema lens and a new in-handle option can provide power to Sony and Panasonic cameras.
The Lensbaby 46mm Macro Kit comprises of three stackable filters with different magnification levels, which can be combined with several of the company's "bokeh effect" lenses.
Nikon Rumors is reporting that an upcoming full-frame mirrorless camera from Nikon will sport an all-new "Z-Mount" with an extremely short flange distance of just 16mm.
A lot of people still have positive associations with the Kodak brand and its iconic logos, but it’s worth clearing something up: not everything with the Kodak name on it has much connection to a bunch of clever people in Rochester, New York.
A leaked image of a Galaxy S9 retail box indicates the new model might come with a variable aperture lens and a super-slow-motion video mode.
The portable little scanner features a 3.5-inch color screen, an integrated SD card slot for saving your scans, adapter trays for different types of film, and an HDMI port for viewing your scans directly on an external display.
Yesterday, Canon Italy and Canon Spain accidentally shared a composite photo that contained stolen elements shot with a Fujifilm camera. Today, in a response on social media, the company somehow managed to make things worse.
We've got a pair of Sigma 16mm F1.4 DC DN lenses in the office: one for Micro Four Thirds and the other for Sony E-mount. In this article we have some impressions of the MFT version, as well as some other lenses in this class worth considering.
Most wedding photographers are probably open to a little bit of feedback from their clients, but one Hong Kong couple was reportedly so upset, they provided their photographer with a detailed 30-page report full of their grievances!
It appears Huwei's ties to the Chinese Government and a fear of espionage have played a role in AT&T's decision not to offer the Huawei Mate 10 Pro and it's Leica-branded dual camera to customers in the United States.
The Autel Robotics EVO looks like the first serious competitor for DJI's Mavic Pro Platinum. With a better remote, slightly better camera, and a slightly cheaper price tag, this drone could steal some serious Mavic market share.
Sony has released firmware version 2.00 for its flagship a9 mirrorless camera. The most notable improvements are to continuous AF, but overall stability has been addressed, as well.