Friday, March 13, 2009

Camera Review - Panasonic DMC TZ5




A completely unsolicited review. Last night was my daughter's class performance of "The Pirates of Penzance" so I grabbed a camera I bought about a year ago, the Panasonic DMC-TZ5, and shot a bunch of pictures with the flash off. I didn't think much about it, until I downloaded the pictures, and then I was completely amazed by the quality of these totally automated snaps.

I'll let the pictures speak for themselves (you can click on the images to see them at full size) but technically speaking, I was zoomed about halfway in, shooting at the full picture size of 9MB, in regular automated shooting mode. I have not done anything to the files and bear in mind that posting a picture somehow always seems to slightly flatten out and diminish the image.

The camera is just slightly bigger than a deck of cards and when closed, the lens protrudes about 3/8 of an inch from the body, making it just out of true pocket size. That quibble is of course more than compensated for by the quality of the pictures. And it takes pretty good video too!












16 comments:

Joe Holmes said...

Ooh. I'm very impressed by the low noise and the vivid colors -- what ISO? It's been a while since I shot with a pocket camera but they must have come a long way!

I played the Major General at probably just about that same age, and I can still sing the Major General's Song from memory. And now my daughter knows it, too. What a terrific play.

giggles said...

No way!!!!!!!!!!

Cost?

The Concrete Commentator said...

Great photos! Just wondering why you have a photo of a Leica in this post... Your camera is a Panasonic right?

The Year in Pictures said...

Dear Concrete -

It's a Panasonic Lumix with a Leica lens. Panasonic owns Leica now and put their lenses on their cameras.

J.D.

Christopher Paquette said...

wow... great images! I have been hearing people rave about these little cameras for several years now, and the quality of the Leica lens on them. The LAST thing I need is another camera, but it really would be nice to have a quality pocket digital for those times when it is just a pain in the butt to lug around my enormous 5D.

Thanks for posting these!

Anonymous said...

Quote: "I have not done anything to the files and bear in mind that posting a picture somehow always seems to slightly flatten out and diminish the image."
Do you have Lightroom? In the develop module, the Clarity at about 30 and the Vibrance around 40-50 will jack your images up enough to make em look decent upon web delivery.

stacy said...

nicely done!

always great when we THOSE kind photographic surprises... pleasant ones.

Anonymous said...

I have a lumix on back order! Now you've made the wait even more unbearable.

The Concrete Commentator said...

Hi James,

Thanks for that. Great show tonight by the way! I would like to swing back in to have a better look at Tanyth's work when it's not so crowded. Congrats!!

The Year in Pictures said...

Price wise - you can now get one for around $200.

J.D.

Anonymous said...

I bought one last year and could have sold it 10 times over to my friends - the quality is amazing in every respect and the features are top notch. I carry it everywhere.

Anonymous said...

my family all bought these for a trip of ours to Africa - and the pics turned out FANTASTIC! My friend who is a professional Digital Photgrapher - was so in love after viewing them and using ours - she bought one too!

Anna said...

I bought the TZ1 when it first came out because of the 10x zoom on a compact camera, after being quite frustrated with the 3x of my parents' camera.

It's been with me everywhere and even survived an awful drop at a quarry... I must have recommended this camera to at least 10 people. Glad you enjoy it!!!

moe lauher said...

Your review pushed me over the edge. I just got my new DMC-TZ5 from Amazon yesterday. It's really nice. I have fingers made crooked by arthritis and will have to learn to hold it, but I'm happy so far. Thanks for this posting and all of the others. Come and read me to see how I do.

Moelauher

Michael Tallman said...

"I have not done anything to the files and bear in mind that posting a picture somehow always seems to slightly flatten out and diminish the image."

This is a color management issue. Your photos are posted with no profile embedded - I'm guessing that they were in the Adobe 1998 profile at some point (in camera or in software) and in the process of uploading the profile tag was lost. Most web browsers do not pay attention to color profile tags anyway so images need to be converted to the sRGB profile before uploading to look decent.

r4 dsi said...

I love this camera. I really do. I'm so happy with its performance and feature-set, I'm willing to forgive the lack of manual controls and the price drop I just saw.