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Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ4K 8.1MP Digital Camera with 10x Wide Angle MEGA Optical Image Stabilized Zoom (Black)
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- 8.1-megapixel resolution captures enough detail for photo-quality 16x 22-inch prints
- 10x optical zoom Leica DC lens; Face Detection
- New Panasonic Venus Engine IV improves noise reduction, elevates the detection accuracy and corrective effects
- 2.5-inch LCD; Mega O.I.S. and Intelligent ISO
- Captures images to SD memory cards (not included)
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This camera has been Factory-Refurbished to perform as new. It is sold with a 90-Day Panasonic Warranty. The 10x optical zoom has a 35mm equivalence of 28mm wide-angle to 280mm telephoto, spanning virtually all photographic needs. Ideal for traveling, Panasonic's DMC-TZ4 Lumix 8.1-megapixel digital camera has a LEICA DC Vario-Elmar lens with a handy, compact body. Five Intelligent Auto functions team up to help prevent shooting errors. Intelligent Exposure corrects lighting differences, so images come out just the way you see them; Intelligent Scene Selector chooses the mode that best fits the situation; MEGA Optical Image Stabilization helps prevent blurring from hand-shake; Intelligent ISO Control helps prevent motion blur; and Face Detection helps produce clear portraits by optimizing the focus and exposure settings. The Intelligent big bright 2.5" LCD adjusts brightness automatically as the ambient light level changes, so images are clear, bright and easy to see. 2.5 Diagonal Polycrystalline TFT LCD Display (230K dots) Focusing Area Normal - Wide 50cm/Tele 200cm - infinity, Macro/Intelligent AUTO / Clipboard - Wide 5cm / Max 200cm / Tele 100cm - infinity 8 - 1/2,000 sec. Starry Sky Mode - 15, 30, 60sec. Shutter Speed Auto / 100 / 200 / 400 / 800 / 1600 (High Sensitivity Mode - Auto(1600 - 6400) ) ISO 27MB Internal Memory (additional memory recommended to store more photos and video) Built-in Microphone and Speaker Still and motion modes SD/SDHC, MultiMedia Card Slot Built-in Flash with Auto, Auto/Red-eye Reduction, Forced On, Forced Off modes DC Input, AV Output (NTSC/PAL), HD AV Output (Component), USB Connections PictBridge Compatible Approximate Battery Life - 300 Shots (CIPA Standard) Approximate Unit Weight - 0.489 lbs
From the Manufacturer
The 8.1-megapixel Panasonic DMC-TZ4 packs a 28mm wide-angle, 10x optical zoom Leica DC lens in a compact design, ideal for the active photographer who needs a versatile camera. By combining a 28mm wide-angle lens, which lets you capture a wider-framed shot when compared to a traditional 35mm camera, with the TZ-Series 10x optical zoom, you're empowered to take expanded shots, both wide and far. Panasonic's Intelligent Auto technologies are also expanded, with new Intelligent Exposure and Digital Red-eye Correction.
With the addition of Intelligent Exposure and Digital Red-eye Correction, Panasonics Advanced Intelligent Auto mode consists of seven intuitive technologies, all which are specifically designed to help make photo-taking an enjoyable and seamless process unnoticed by the consumer -- helping them to take clear photos. When in Advanced Intelligent Auto mode, the following technologies all operate automatically; no settings need to be manually changed.
Also new to the TZ4 is the Venus Engine IV, Panasonics new high-performance image processing LSI. The Venus Engine IV produces higher-quality pictures than its predecessor, the Venus Engine III, by using a more advanced signal processing system. The new Venus Engine IV also improves noise reduction, elevates the detection accuracy and corrective effects in both Mega O.I.S. and Intelligent ISO and reduces the shutter release time lag. Both models also incorporate Intelligent LCD, which detects the lighting condition and controls the brightness level of the LCD in 11 fine steps, to offer optimal clarity in any situation, whether dark or light; indoors or outdoors. With a newly developed 230,000-dot high resolution in the TZ4s 2.5-inch LCD, photos can be easily viewed on the display, regardless of the shooting environment.
The TZ4 is also capable of recording 1920 x 1080-pixel high-definition motion pictures, and because of its support of SD memory cards, is easily compatible with Panasonic Viera plasma HDTVs that have an integrated SD memory card slot, so viewing photos is simple. Also, with the newly added HD component output capability, users can also connect the TZ4 to an HDTV and watch a slideshow complete with mood-appropriate music, choosing from natural, slow, urban and swing.
Lumix DMC-TZ4A Highlights
Intelligent Exposure With this new feature, photos will no longer be under- or over-exposed. Instead, the TZ4 instantly analyzes the framed image and adjusts the brightness in areas that are too dark because of dim lighting, backlighting or the use of the flash. The camera will automatically adjust the brightness accordingly.
Digital Red-eye Correction This feature helps to eliminate the red-eye problem that sometimes results when taking flash shots at the night. Incorporated into the built-in flash, the camera emits a small preliminary flash before the main flash, detects red-eye and will digitally correct it.
Mega O.I.S. Gyrosensors detect hand-shake and the lens system shifts to compensate, helping to prevent hand-shake from creating a blurry image.
Intelligent ISO With Intelligent ISO, the TZ4 can determine if the photo subject is moving and change the ISO setting and shutter speed accordingly, thus giving a blur-free photo.
Intelligent Scene Selector Intelligent Scene Selector senses the ambient conditions, recognizes the shooting environment and will automatically select the appropriate scene mode from: Scenery, Portrait, Macro, Night Portrait or Night Scenery mode. This intuitive technology, helps you use the most common scene modes that are built into the camera, but often go unused, without making any manual adjustments.
Face Detection Panasonics Face Detection detects faces anywhere in the frame and automatically chooses the optimal focus and exposure settings so portraits come out clear and crisp. Detecting up to 15 faces, Panasonics Face Detection can even track a face if the subject is moving.
Continuous AF The Continuous AF (auto focus) system maintains focus on the subject even without pressing a shutter button halfway, thus minimizing the AF time.
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Top customer reviews
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I've not been a Panasonic user before this and was actually quite leery of the brand based on professional reviews that complained about other Panasonic models suffering from a watercolor effect and heavy handed noise reduction artifacts. So I went with Fuji first and then Canon, but couldn't "get happy" with any of their offerings.
So far, neither noise reduction artifacting nor watercolor effects are apparent in this iteration, the TZ-4. It is a gorgeous metal camera that is easy to hold by a guy with even fairly large hands, despite the fact that it's very compact. The menu system is quite straightforward and there are plenty of scene modes that at least approximate what a manual control camera might offer you. ISO, AF area, metering area, exposure compensation and bracketing, and white balance can all be manually set. There is no shutter or aperture priority, although you can specify the absolute minimum shutter speed the camera will choose, down to a full second.
The custom white balance set feature is very well implemented, and I had no problem getting beautifully lit, correctly exposed existing light shots indoors using the image stabilization feature and low ISO.
The LCD monitor is not as sharp as the TZ5's but plenty good for checking pictures, and the battery lasts longer in this camera than the TZ5 if that matters to you.
The AF assist light is very, very helpful and focus lock is almost always very quick and on the money. The macro feature is astounding. The controls are well placed and give good feedback.
I have three gripes: the power switch and the scene wheel can both be inadvertently activated; there need to be way firmer detents or they both have to be recesed. AF seems to struggle a bit with the movie mode, but being able to zoom during the actual video shooting is a godsend. And finally, the USB out port is irritating. It pops open very easily. I may use a piece of black electrical tape to cover it.
All in all a superb little performer for what you get for your money; chock full of features and of course the lovely 28 - 280 zoom. WOW. I highly recommend this camera as an ideal all around travel camera you might actually take with you !!
Out of the box, the TZ4K looks nice, albeit a little clunky next to the sleek Elphs and other more compact cameras on the market. However, it powers up quickly and adapts readily to just about anything I've tested so far (the first week I had it consisted of nothing but rain, so for a while I was just doing poorly-lit indoor shots of my cats and random furniture. That said, that my cats actually looked like cats and not blurry blobs or white glowing things is a major improvement over my old camera).
I took it to the zoo, where it had a little trouble deciding what to focus on if using the long end of the zoom (especially if the subject was moving), but I suspect this could be helped by turning off the continuous auto-focus. I got a few interesting action shots of my three-year-old nephew running around. I took it to the bar with a few friends and had a shoot-off with a friend who owns a Nikon. Today I took it on a hike and tried out the scenery and macro modes, the latter of which can be a little tricky sometimes. It can't always decide whether it should be focusing on the background or the foreground, even when macro mode is selected (though it does tell you when you're too close for it to focus).
I did notice some of the focus changes during video mode that some people have complained about in reviews of this and the TZ3/TZ5, but to be honest it was minimal and can be avoided by turning off the AF. Sound quality is comparable to my Canon -- not the highest quality, but clear and audible.
Battery life is good and it has a battery meter on-screen, so you don't have to hunt through any menus to find out how long you've got.
I bought it bundled with the 4GB SDHC and reader and they arrived on the same day. Also got a Lowepro Rezo 30 case for it, which isn't too bulky but has a soft lining and lots of padding.
Overall, I really love this camera and would recommend it to anyone interested in purchasing it. Definitely worth it.
Edit: I've now had this camera for over a year and still thoroughly enjoy it. I've found that leaving it on the "natural" color setting leads to images that are little to on the "cool" side, but that's what "vivid" is for. One quirk I've noticed and do not like is if I'm switching back and forth between taking video and pictures, it will sometimes randomly save a picture in a reeeaaalllyyy low resolution. It's really obnoxious, because I've had a few otherwise good shots become worthless due to terrible image quality in a format too small to even make a passable 4x6 with. If anyone else has this issue and/or has a solution, I'd appreciate it. Most of the time it's not an issue, though.