Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ5 Concise Review
Panasonic launched the original 'Travel Zoom' TZ1 back in February 2006. In 2007 came the TZ3 and now, almost exactly one year later, Panasonic brings us the third generation of this popular series in the shape of the TZ5 (The TZ2 and TZ4 are the smaller sister models of the TZ3 and TZ5 respectively). Like its predecessors it offers a stabilized big zoom lens in a very compact package.
With the new model Panasonic has stuck to the tried and tested TZ formula and only implemented a relatively small number of modifications. As one would expect sensor resolution was increased (from 7.2 to 9.1MP on a marginally larger sensor) and so was the resolution of the 3.0" screen (from 230K to 460K pixels). Additionally the in-camera computing is now powered by Panasonic's latest generation imaging engine - the Venus IV. However, the most interesting new feature is the HD video capability. The TZ5 can now capture video in a resolution of 1280x720 at 30fps in a 16:9 format.
In the digital age a product cycle of 12 months almost seems like an eternity. Has Panasonic made good use of the time and managed to iron out some some of the image quality issues that let the otherwise superb previous TZ generations down? Let's find out, starting as usual with the headline specification:
- 9.1 million effective pixel / 10.7 million pixels total 1/2.33" CCD
- 10x (28-280mm equiv.) Leica DC Vario-Elmarit optical zoom
- MEGA OIS image stabilization
- 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9 aspect ratios
- Venus IV Engine processor
- High Resolution (460,000 pixel) 3.0-inch LCD
- Movies up to 1280 x 720 pixels (HD) @ 30 fps
- 22 scene modes plus a 'clipboard' mode for travelers
Note: While we working on this review Panasonic has launched the Lumix TZ50 which is essentially a TZ5 with Wi-Fi capability which allows users to upload images directly to their Picasa Web Albums. The TZ50 comes with a year's free use of T-Mobile's Hotspot service in the US. There is no word yet on a similar package for European customers.
|Street price|| US: $300
• 1/2.33" Type CCD
• 4:3 Aspect Ratio: 3456 x 2592,
3072 x 2304,
2560 x 1920,
2048 x 1536,
1600 x 1200, 640x480
• 4:3 Aspect Ratio: 640 x 480 pixels, 320 x 240 pixels 30 fps, 10 fps
|File formats||• JPEG (EXIF 2.21)
• QuickTime (Motion JPEG)
• 10x optical zoom
|Image stabilization||MEGA O.I.S lens-shift stabilization|
|Digital zoom||Yes, up to 4x|
• Continuous AF
|AF area modes||• Face
• 3-point high speed
• 1-point high speed
|AF assist lamp||Yes|
|Focus distance||• Normal: Wide 50cm/ Tele 200cm - infinity
• Macro / Intelligent AUTO / Clipboard : Wide 5cm / Max 200cm / Tele 100cm - infinity
|Metering||• Intelligent Multiple
|ISO sensitivity||• Auto
• High Sensitivity Mode : Auto (1600 - 6400)
|Exposure compensation||• +/- 2EV
• 1/3 EV steps
|Exposure bracketing|| • +/- 1/3EV -1EV
• 3 frames
• 8-1/2000 sec
|Aperture||• Wide: F3.3 / F8.0 (2 steps) Tele: F4.9 / F11 (2 steps)|
• Intelligent AUTO
|Scene modes|| • Portrait
• Soft Skin
• Night Portrait
• Night Scenery
• Candle Light
• High sensitivity
• Hi-Speed Burst
• Starry Sky
• Aerial photo
|Self timer||• 10 or 2 secs|
|Continuous shooting|| • Full-Resolution Image:
2.5 fps Max. 5 images (Standard mode), Max 3 images (Fine Mode)
• High-speed Burst Mode: Approx. 6 fps (recorded in 2M for 4:3, 2.5M for 3:2, 2M for 16:9)
|Image parameters||• Standard
• Black & White
• Auto/Red-eye Reduction
• Forced On
• Slow Sync./Red-eye Reduction
• Forced Off
• Range: 0.6 - 5.3m (Wide/ISO Auto), 1.0 - 3.6m (Tele/ISO Auto)
|LCD monitor||• 3.0 " TFT LCD Display
• 460K dots
• Field of View : approx. 100%
• AUTO Power LCD mode, Power LCD mode, High angle mode
|Connectivity||• USB2.0 High speed
• AV Output (NTSC/PAL)
• HD AV Output (component)
• DC Input
|Print compliance||• PictBridge
|Storage||• SD Memory Card, SDHC Memory Card, MultiMediaCard (Still image only)
• approx. 27MB internal memory
|Power||• Li-ion battery
• Charger included
• AC adaptor (optional)
• Battery life up to 300 pictures (CIPA Standard)
|Weight (excl batt)||214 g (7.5 oz)|
|Dimensions||103.3 x 59.3 x 36.5 mm (4.07 x 2.33 x 1.44 in)|
Apr 22, 2008
Jan 29, 2008
Apr 14, 2011
Apr 14, 2011
Join DPReview editors Rishi Sanyal and Carey Rose on Facebook Live as they share their experience and answer your questions about the new Sony a9, Wednesday at 9:30 AM Pacific time. Click here for additional details and time zones
German media reports that the founders of the company behind the Panono 360-degree ball camera have filed for bankruptcy at a court in Berlin. Read more
With a claimed 800 new custom parts, Microsoft's updated Surface Pro comes with the latest Kaby Lake processors, better battery life, a new hinge, plus the Surface Pen is updated as well. Read more
DW Photo is attempting to resurrect the Hy6 medium format camera, though the legal tangles of its development may stop it being branded Rolleiflex.
The Kodak EKTRA, the company's 'camera first' smartphone, is now available to purchase in the United States. Read more
Apple and Nokia have settled their years-old patent dispute. Apple will make an undisclosed payment to Nokia and sign a licensing agreement related to digital health products with the Finnish company.
David Gibson, one of Britain's best known street shooters, shares all.
Photographers from the SKYGLOW project travelled 150k miles and took 3 million photos in increasingly rare locations: those without light pollution.
The world's fastest 200mm was produced for 16 years. In that time, only 8000 were made.
Photokina, the biennial photo industry trade show in Cologne, Germany, has announced that it will become an annual event beginning in 2018, and expand its focus to additional areas of imaging technology. Read more
No mic socket? No problem. In this video, Daniel Peters at Photo Gear News shows you how to make a lapel microphone using just a smartphone and a pair of earbuds.
How does the iPhone 7 Plus stack up against the Arri Alexa cinema camera? Watch this short video to find out.
Canon Australia's video series "The Lab" is designed to make photographers experiment and think outside the box. In the latest video a group of photographers create images based on their sense of taste.
The GH5 is expected to get a firmware update this summer to support 400Mbps internal recording. NewsShooter explores what memory cards you'll need to make it work.
Microsoft's new Surface Pro offers Intel's latest processor generation and improved battery life.
Riding a mountain bike downhill is dangerous enough in daylight, but potentially lethal at night. Which is where drones come in.
Rumors abound that Canon (and maybe Nikon) may produce a mirrorless camera based using their existing DSLR mount. Does this guarantee immediate great lens choice or a perpetually second-rate experience? Read more
According to rumors, the next camera from Nest will be able to capture 4K video, though that resolution will be only used for 'virtual' pan and tilt functions.
Boundary's Prima 'fully modular' backpack is expandable to 30L and has a removable camera case and tablet sleeve. Early Kickstarter backers can get one for $189.
Stanley Greene captured 'brutally honest' photographs in the war zones of the Middle East, Chechnya and Georgia. He was also one of the few African-American photographers working internationally.
Owners of Leica M cameras that suffer from peeling CCDs will be able to claim a free repair in the future so long as the camera was purchased within five years of the fault becoming apparent, the company has announced. Read more
The Carl Zeiss Jena BIOTAR 75mm F1.5 Red T lens is very rare and priced accordingly. It can be yours today for the low, low price of $15,000.
The MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) has developed a drone that does not require any human control for recording tracking shots. Read more
In this terrifying video, Iraqi journalist Ammar Alwaely narrowly misses a sniper's bullet, which takes out his chest-mounted GoPro. Warning: strong language. Watch the video
A new report expects action camera growth to increase about 15% by 2021, with Ultra HD cameras driving demand. Read more
Profiles for Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom have been released for Irix's ultra-wide 11mm and 15mm primes. Like all profiles, these correct for distortion and vignetting.
An upcoming firmware update from DJI will cripple its drones unless they are 'activated' on the company's website. Live streaming will be turned off and flight radius/altitude will be limited.
Brent from ShareGrid rounds up the 10 most common products filmmakers are renting from one another for productions; chances are good you own one or more of them.
DaVinci Resolve is making strong moves to compete with Premiere and Final Cut Pro, including affordable control panels for colorists. According to Premium Beat, they're really good.
If you are not planning to fly your drone commercially you are not required to register it with the FAA anymore. This decision was handed down by a federal court in Washington, D.C.