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Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ5K 9MP Digital Camera with 10x Wide Angle MEGA Optical Image Stabilized Zoom (Black) (OLD MODEL)
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- 9-megapixel resolution captures enough detail for poster-sized prints
- 10x optical zoom Leica DC lens; Face Detection
- New Panasonic Venus Engine IV improves noise reduction, elevates the detection accuracy and corrective effects
- 3.0-inch LCD; Mega O.I.S. and Intelligent ISO
- Captures images to SD memory cards (not included)
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|Shipping||—||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping|
|Sold By||Available from these sellers||6ave||Amazon.com||Amazon.com||Amazon.com||Amazon.com|
|Screen Size||3 in||3 in||5 in||3 in||3 in||3 in|
|Item Dimensions||1.43 x 4.07 x 2.33 in||1.34 x 4.37 x 2.56 in||0.87 x 3.75 x 2.14 in||4.4 x 1.62 x 2.64 in||5.31 x 5.35 x 2.09 in||4.4 x 1.7 x 2.5 in|
|Item Weight||0.54 lb||0.54 lb||4.4 ounces||0.71 lb||0.54 lb||0.69 lb|
|Optical Sensor Resolution||9 megapixels||—||12 megapixels||20.3 megapixels||—||—|
|Video Capture Resolution||1280 x 720, 30 fps, 848 x 480, 30 fps, 640 x 480, 30 fps, 320 x 240, 30 fps||1920 x 1080 (60p/60i/30p), 1280 x 720 (60p/30p), 640 x 480 (30p)||1280 x 720 pixels, 640 x 480,1280 x 720 pixels||4k||60p||4k|
|Viewfinder||None||LCD||fixed LCD||electronic viewfinder||electronic viewfinder||electronic viewfinder|
LEICA 28mm Wide-Angle Lens with 10x Optical Zoom Now you can fit sweeping landscapes into a single frame with the 28mm wide-angle setting. Pull in subjects from far away to capture even subtle facial expressions with the dynamic 280mm telephoto setting. Ideal for traveling, the DMC-TZ5 Lumix 9 megapixel digital camera combines a wide-ranging LEICA DC Vario-Elmar lens with a handy, compact body. The Extra Optical Zoom function also extends the zoom to as much as 16.9x
From the Manufacturer
The 9.1-megapixel Panasonic DMC-TZ5 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 TZ5 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 460,000-dot high resolution in the TZ5s 3.0-inch LCD, photos can be easily viewed on the display, regardless of the shooting environment.
The TZ5 is also capable of recording 720p 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 TZ5 to an HDTV and watch a slideshow complete with mood-appropriate music, choosing from natural, slow, urban and swing.
Lumix DMC-TZ5A Highlights
Intelligent Exposure With this new feature, photos will no longer be under- or over-exposed. Instead, the TZ5 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 TZ5 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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Since it irritates me when people say that they do a great deal of research and then never share it (doesn't that irritate you?), here are some of the cameras I ruled out based on my (maybe not your) criteria:
Fujifilm FinePix F100fd (difficult menu design, pink banding issue), Canon PowerShot SD890 IS (reported awful handling and poorly designed controls), Casio Exilim Card EX-S10 (No image stabilization, very slim, picture quality ok, weak zoom, tiny controls), Casio Exilim EX-S880 (No image stabilization, reported poor image quality), Olympus Stylus 850 SW (reportedly poor video shooting, poor battery life), Pentax Optio V10 (No image stabilization), Casio EX-Z1080 (Reduced pixels compared to others, 38mm starting range), Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX55 (Reportedly falls short on image quality, no viewfinder, larger), Ricoh Caplio R7 (No optical viewfinder, very noisy, some barrel distortion when fully extended, poor customer service?, reported quality mediocre), Pentax Optio A40 (Reportedly poor autofocus), and Canon PowerShot A470 (No viewfinder, no image stabilization, weak zoom).
Unfortunately, doing all this research meant I didn't get the Lumix TZ5 till right before my trip to Amsterdam - I was literally reading the manual on the plane. I don't recommend this, but it does serve as a good crash test for what the camera could (and could not) do out-of-the-box.
As you probably know, this isn't an ultracompact but it is not as big as some reviewers make out. Could fit in a large pocket but it is rather heavy and unprotected in that environment so I got a LowePro case for it that sat on my belt. Worked well, allowed for extra batteries and SD card, and access was quick for candid shots.
Things that worked well:
* The Intelligent Auto mode worked pretty well for most situations. I suggest studying the exposure compensation settings since I had to use these often in high contrast and full sun situations.
* One handed operation works well.
* Menu system was pretty intuitive for basic functions.
* Zoom is amazing and E.Zoom setting was very useful. Be sure to read how to use the "extended optical zoom" which lets you go out to 16.9x at reduced picture quality (I believe you have to have picture quality set at max 9MB and this is then reduced to 3MB). I didn't use the digital zoom.
* The screen is gorgeous and the playback is amazing - many people commented on this.
* Taking video is pretty easy, though I would have preferred a button rather than having to rotate a dial. Be careful on playback to distinguish between what is a still picture and what is video - I accidentally deleted some video because I thought they were poor still shots, rather than the start of the video.
* If the dial is accidentally rotated, the camera will not let you take a picture until you correctly choose an actually setting.
* Fairly quick start up - not stellar but not bad.
* Can set up something called Travel Date, which will organize pictures by 1st, 2nd, 3rd day. This was useful when sharing pictures and to help you remember the chronology of the trip.
* You can zoom while taking video, although more slowly than with still shots.
What didn't work well:
* No matter what you read, the pretty LCD screen is no replacement for a view finder even when you use the Auto Power LCD option to compensate. In daylight, even on the brightest setting, the screen washes out. Another problem I had was I had to remove my glasses to compose on the screen, which was a hassle with rapidly-moving candid shots. This was the biggest disappointment and I took off one star for this.
* Certain functions of the camera will only work in certain settings. For example, you can only set the self-timer for 10 sec in IA mode, histograms cannot be displayed in IA mode, exposure settings can only be used in normal mode, extended optical zoom cannot be used in motion picture mode, etc. It can be frustrating, and you can miss a good shot, if you don't have all that memorized. I imagine all cameras are like this, but thought I would mention it since we are discussing an out-of-the-box experience.
* The door to the sockets on the right-hand side comes open easily (does not lock closed but only snaps shut), which is a hassle at times. I am concerned that it will snap off one day.
* In my opinion, the flash is underpowered.
Overall, I am happy with the TZ5 and impressed with the pictures and video it produced - especially since I had so little experience with it. My friend, who is a film maker by trade, was also impressed with the camera. It is bigger than I would have liked, but the trade off for a 10X zoom was worth it for me.
Do get an extra battery - I went through both batteries in 4 hours of shooting, mostly stills but some video. Big hassle to run out of juice in the middle of your day. A SD Extreme III 8GB was recommended in some reviews and it worked well for me, especially with shooting video. In doing research about buying a camera, one of the most helpful websites I found was the "What Camera Should I Buy?" forum at the Digital Camera Resource Page - [...]
In looking at the reviews here on Amazon for the TZ5, be aware that they are organized by color, so check each color for information about this camera.
If you read any professional reviews, you already know that this is not the camera for poster size enlargements, even at low ISO values. While the noise reduction has been turned down, there is still some NR smudging and noise. Thankfully, the noise at least can be removed to the point where I was able to doctor a sample ISO 1600 picture to look just fine in 4 x 6 size (thanks to NeatImage). And I've had no problems with 8 x 10's at ISO 100 and 200.
And guess what? That is THE ONLY issue with this camera, and it is one that all other compact cameras also share to various extents. The difference here is that many other compacts also add lots of other "negatives" to the mix, such as severe wide angle distortion, wild and wooly purple fringing, reduced zoom range, and corner blurriness . The TZ 4 and 5 do nothing of the kind.
For what you're getting, a compact, POCKETABLE 28 - 280 Leica lens with IS, there simply is nothing like it out there. And that's before even looking at the HD movie mode, the surprisingly accurate intelligent scene selection feature, the brilliant LCD and the jewel-like workmanship.
This is the ultimate vacation camera if you plan to leave your DSLR home and travel lightly, and aren't spending all day in museums shooting w/o flash. I highly recommend this camera, especially if you lock in the highest possible ISO value at 400, turn the dial to iA, and then give the camera to a complete newbie to shoot pictures with. I think he/she AND you will be very pleasantly surprised with the excellent results.
I know a number of people have complained that the TZ5 is 'not as small' as they thought/hoped it would be. C'mon guys, this thing has a 10x zoom that goes down to 28mm!!! Something with those capabilities is never going to be the size of a credit card! And the thing for me is that I just can't stand geometric distortion and the Panasonic/Leica is a real champ in this regard. There's nothing worse than that horrible barrel distortion you see in so many wide angle lenses. This one has none of that. The trade off is that it gets iffy at higher ISO's. You can effectively prevent this by setting the camera to never let the ISO get above, say 400. The camera allows you to do this. The Optical Image Stabilization ("OIS") is really superb as are the exposure options. And, of course, the face recognition is a great new development that Panasonic has implemented quite well in this camera.
Now to it's video capabilities. It'll shoot 720p HD video in 16:9 which is awesome if you have a HD TV which is, of course, 16:9. Just be sure to turn off "auto-focus" when in video mode or the camera will constantly be 'hunting' for the right focus. It's depth of field is excellent so it'll be in focus most of the time anyway.
Just a couple of nits. The low light assist lamp is not terribly effective (nowhere near as good as the one on my Sony DSC-V1) and the camera sometimes takes a second or two to find the right focus in low light. And I wish there was a way to more easily control/allow for long shutter exposures as I love night photography. As it is, you have to set the camera to "Starry Night" (one of the scene modes) to get shutter speeds longer than 1 second. Not that big a deal and certainly a minor criticism of such an excellent overall camera.
Oh, and one final thing...the build quality is superb. Everything about this camera just shrieks "quality." Great job Panasonic. All at a price point of <$300. Incredible!
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The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ5K was purchased 9...Read more