Panasonic FZ3 or KM Dimage Z3?

Discussion in 'Panasonic Lumix' started by Pattern-chaser, Nov 30, 2004.

  1. I thought I had settled on the Z3, but then I saw some low-light image
    comparisons, and the Z3 came a very poor second. Image resolution seems
    very similar, even though the Z3 has 4 Mp and the FZ3 only 3.2...?

    I have no interest in video or audio, and prefer to take photos under
    available light. [Is the FZ3's lack of a 'tungsten' white balance
    setting important? I will be taking photos under tungsten light, as well
    as in other lighting conditions.]

    I aim to get as close as I can to my old - and sorely missed! - Olympus
    OM2SP + Tamron 35-135 zoom + optical doubler + dedicated flash. [No: I
    have no desire to return to big heavy SLRs + film!] N.B. I only ever
    print 6" x 4" pictures, and view them with the naked eye, so extreme
    resolution is not an issue for me.

    I have always found first-hand user opinions much more useful than
    'expert' assessments, so I would value your thoughts, if you would care
    to post them? What are the plus points of either camera, and what are
    the disadvantages? TIA.


    "Who cares, wins"
    Pattern-chaser, Nov 30, 2004
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  2. Pattern-chaser

    Matt B. Guest

    I have the Panasonic FZ3 and am very pleased with it. It's my first digital
    camera and I don't know anything about the Dimage Z3, so I can't compare the
    two. The Panasonic FZ3 has a 12x optical zoom and Image Stabilization.
    And, since you mentioned white balance, the FZ3 lets you manually set the
    white balance.
    The Canon S1 IS is in the same class, too.
    Matt B., Nov 30, 2004
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  3. Pattern-chaser

    Bob Patton Guest


    I've had my Z3 for a couple of months. Biggest gripe is that autofocus is
    slow and doesn't work well in low light. I finally just set the default for
    manual focus, which I like better anyway.
    Bob Patton, Dec 27, 2004
  4. Pattern-chaser

    Tony Guest

    I got a sub towards a KM Z3 for Xmas. My impression is that the long zoom
    is a very nice toy and I expect to have fun with it, but I find the quality
    a bit disappointing. Compared with my other digital camera, a Canon Ixus
    330, yes it is sharper (4 Mpixel versus 2) but it is quite a bit more noisy
    even at 50 ASA. The anti-shake works but as the lens is not fantastically
    sharp, and with the slightly noisy image, the improvement with using
    anti-shake is not as great as I expected. In fact even without anti-shake
    there is barely detectable blurring on 1/50 s at full zoom (450 mm equiv) on
    a critical subject, which shows what the basic quality is. Flash pix seem
    to have a slight magenta cast and I expect to have to colour correct quite a
    lot of pictures. All the reviews picked up on the flimsy card cover which
    flicks open at a touch, and the battery cover also doesn't look very robust.
    That is the downside of having a relatively light weight camera I suppose.
    Macro and super macro are great!

    Compared to the Ixus I miss the
    auto-rotate which is a very nice feature, probably one of those that you
    don't know how useful it is until you have got used to it and then have to
    do without it. I find autofocus OK and one thing that is much better than
    my old Ixus. But it is infuriating that in low light, as soon as the camera
    works out its auto exposure, the viewfinder darkens to near invisibility. I
    feel like making a wire frame viewfinder to fit the flash socket!

    I actually think this camera will do what I bought it for. I looked at an
    FZ20 but it was just too big and heavy. This camera will be with me when
    the FZ20 would have stayed at home. But anyone expecting semi-pro quality
    will be disappointed - on the basis of my sample anyway.
    Tony, Dec 27, 2004
  5. Pattern-chaser

    Tony Guest

    Looks good. But it is hard to judge sharpness without a known comparison on
    a similar subject. Big close ups with hair tend to look sharp - it was an
    old trick with Standard 8 film to take that sort of shot to impress people
    with the resolution. I really can't tell from that shot whether or not your
    Z3 is better than mine.

    About the viewfinder, it is the opposite to my Canon. That often looked OK
    on the LCD when there was not really enough light. With the Z3 you
    cannot tell what is going on in the viewfinder when there is enough light
    for a correctly exposed (though noisy) picture.
    Tony, Dec 27, 2004
  6. I just bought the Z3 online at Circuit City for under $300 with a $50
    rebate. I think this is a great deal. This camera is excellent if you need
    a zoom camera that is small and lightweight. One finger control of shutter
    and zoom.

    Robert Morrisette, Dec 27, 2004
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