Panasonic TZ3, TZ4 or TZ5

Discussion in 'Panasonic Lumix' started by Ken, Aug 18, 2008.

  1. Ken

    Ken Guest

    I have just given away my Panasonic FZ18 to my son as I was not taking it
    out with me. So am looking at the TZ range, which will go in my pocket, but
    am confused as all three are on sale and the TZ3 seems very good but should
    I pay more and go for the TZ5. Why is it significantly more expensive? Then
    there is the TZ4????????????

    Ken
     
    Ken, Aug 18, 2008
    #1
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  2. Ken

    measekite Guest

    In that size I would take a look at the various Canons, Reviews say the
    color quality and basic image quality is better. Panasonic either has
    more noise or does more processing and that spoils the end result.

    If you do not need an optical viewfinder take a look at the SD990. It
    has been claimed to have the best 3" LCD that is viewable in bright
    daylight. I have not seen this but it was claimed in the reviews.
     
    measekite, Aug 18, 2008
    #2
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  3. Well done for completely ignoring the OP's question and suggesting a camera that doesn't even come anywhere close to having the features of the Pana TZ range.

    Ken, the TZ3 is the older model. Apart from the extra megapixels of the TZ5 over the TZ4 the only other difference I'm aware of is the screen, which I think is almost twice the resolution on the TZ5. How any of these compare to each other for picture quality i'm unsure and i'm in the same boat as you - wondering if its worth spending the extra on the TZ5.
     
    Jack Torrence, Aug 19, 2008
    #3
  4. Ken

    Ken Guest

    "Jack Torrence" <room217[at]overlook.freeserve.co.uk> wrote in message
    Well done for completely ignoring the OP's question and suggesting a camera
    that doesn't even come anywhere close to having the features of the Pana TZ
    range.

    Ken, the TZ3 is the older model. Apart from the extra megapixels of the TZ5
    over the TZ4 the only other difference I'm aware of is the screen, which I
    think is almost twice the resolution on the TZ5. How any of these compare to
    each other for picture quality i'm unsure and i'm in the same boat as you -
    wondering if its worth spending the extra on the TZ5.


    I wonder will the double resolution on the LCD (TZ5 over TZ3) improve seeing
    the screen in sunlight or just give a clearer picture when reviewing???
    Also just spotted the TZ4 has a 2.5" screen and the other two a 3" screen???
     
    Ken, Aug 19, 2008
    #4
  5. Ken

    Ken Guest

    "David J Taylor"
    When I bought my FZ18 the TZ3 was a very close second choice but I felt I
    wanted a viewfinder. Do you find the absence of the viewfinder is a problem?
    A friend who has a cheap Fuji went to a boating event and said sun was to
    his back and he couldn't see the screen so just guessed and every shot was
    either aimed too high or too low!

    I was in a shop earlier and the lens cover was broken, on the TZ5, which
    worried me about its flimsiness or may of been a case of some yob
    deliberately breaking it?

    Ken
    Ken
     
    Ken, Aug 19, 2008
    #5
  6. Ken

    Ken Guest

    "David J Taylor"
    The LCD has the same options as my FZ18 with brighten and high level
    shooting. I did a comparison, in the sun, last week with an assortment of
    friends cameras and my FZ18 won against every other one and by a long long
    way.

    Hopefully the lens cover will be OK as I am not known for being heavy handed
    with such things and will get a case.

    Thanks

    Ken
     
    Ken, Aug 19, 2008
    #6
  7. Ken

    measekite Guest

    Features are nice but they take a back seat to the ultimate reason for
    purchasing a camera. And that is picture quality. That is really where
    it is at. If you want the best picture quality you may have to give up
    some features unless without those features you would not get any photo
    at all.
     
    measekite, Aug 19, 2008
    #7
  8. Ken

    Ken Guest

    Ken,

    I cannot directly answer your question regarding the TZ3 vs. TZ5.
    What I can tell you is that I have been very pleased with my TZ5.

    Yes, I have several Nikon SLR's & DSLR's with a nice assortment of
    lenses. But we were going on our first "real" vacation in two years,
    and this I time I did not want to take my fully loaded Pelican case of
    camera gear and then have to fight the airlines over an extra charge
    for having too much luggage.

    My criteria was a 1.) basic "Point and Shoot" camera; 2.) with more
    than a 3x or 4x optical zoom; 3.) with at least 6MP; 4.) that would
    fit in my shirt or blue jean pocket; and 5.) less than $400.

    Basically, I want to travel light with something "more better" than my
    wife's P&S with a 3x optical zoom

    I started my research with the usual name-brand suspects, Canon, Nikon
    and Sony - but nothing fit the bill. So, I extended my search to
    include others such as Casio, Kodak, Olympus, Panasonic, and others.

    What I finally found was the Panasonic TZ5 with 10MP and 10x optical
    zoom (67x digital zoom) shaped like a small-flat brick on sale at
    Circuit City for $320.

    I bought a camera case I could attached to my belt, a camera case to
    carry all the extra "stuff" (instruction manual, cables, cords,
    charger, extra batteries), 2 extra mail-order "not-Panasonic-brand"
    batteries for $15 each. and two 4GB HCSD memory cards.

    On our 10-day vacation trip to Disney World and the FL beaches, I took
    over 800 pictures. One evening while we were relaxing, I plugged the
    TZ5 into the TV, and our girls (7 and 5 years old) enjoyed the slide
    show.

    I am always discovering little extra's that are great for a P&S
    camera. Using the "fireworks" setting, I got some great pictures of
    the 10:00pm firework show above Cinderella's castle. Using the
    "airplane window" setting, I got some neat pictures of some FL
    manatees threw the aquarium window. And, yes I did get try out the
    67x digital zoom and got some great pictures of a bald eagle!

    On a side note, the TZ5 shows a calendar, and the number of pictures
    taken that day. I have found this very helpful in quickly finding a
    specific picture that I have taken.

    I catch myself taking with me even when I don't plan on taking any
    pictures - just in case. This morning, my wife doesn't know where her
    Sony camera is. But "our" Panasonic TZ5 was safely tucked away in her
    purse. Hmmm. What better recommendation do you need?

    The screen size is a nice, comfortable and easy to read. I really
    don't miss the viewfinder. Having the extra MP's just keeps it from
    getting obsolete faster.

    Many of the reviews I evalutated rated other cameras higher - but they
    were using a different criteria than the ones I stated above. So, be
    honest with yourself as to YOUR criteria, and then decide
    accordingly. For example, if price is more important to you, then go
    with the TZ3. If you are like me and designed for comfort instead of
    speed, spend the extra bucks for the larger LCD.

    Since, I have a complete set of "real" SLR/DSLR camera stuff - this is
    my "grab-n-go", almost disposable rig. But, I have been very satisfied
    with it. I think it is a nice balance of features for its price
    point.

    I understand that they now have a wireless version of the TZ5, but it
    wasn't available in mid-May 2008 and it was outside my self-imposed
    budget. It looks really cool, though!

    Circuit City sells the black one. Best Buy sells the silver one.
    Take your pick.

    Thank you very very much for taking the time and trouble to give such an
    enthusiastic and comprehensive report on the TZ5. Like you I have been
    finding I have not been taking my FZ18 with me and then using my mobile
    phone (don't laugh) to catch one or two photo chances.

    Some of the ultra compacts just feel too small where this one will go in my
    pocket and feels extremely solid and big enough without needing a stylus to
    use the buttons!

    Again many thanks and I find myself rapidly inching forward towards buying
    one.

    Ken
     
    Ken, Aug 19, 2008
    #8
  9. You prat. So to take wildlife pictures you'd chose a fixed focal length camera over a 400mm zoom lens, if it produced better 'quality' pictures?

    PS. Don't forget to recommend the use of genuine canon ink to print those pics from the SD900.
     
    Jack Torrence, Aug 20, 2008
    #9
  10. Ken

    Fred Guest

    "Jack Torrence" <room217[at]overlook.freeserve.co.uk> wrote in message
    You prat. So to take wildlife pictures you'd chose a fixed focal length
    camera over a 400mm zoom lens, if it produced better 'quality' pictures?

    PS. Don't forget to recommend the use of genuine canon ink to print those
    pics from the SD900.



    If I may iterject in this argument :)

    Just to redress the balance a bit, I've got various makes of "prosumer" P&S
    digital cameras, including Panasonic and Canon, and while my Panasonic FZ5
    has a superb Leica zoom lens, IS and many other great features, it without
    doubt produces by far the worst images of any of my cameras, when viewed at
    100% on the screen, even the ISO 100 pictures are poor compared to my other
    cameras. So yes Panasonic cameras are technically brilliant with great
    features, but when it comes down to it, their pictures aren't on a par with
    the best of the bunch. This isn't to say that I don't like my FZ5, it still
    gets used a lot because of the excellent zoom range, but it's only any good
    in brightly lit situations, and the pictures certainly aren't good enough to
    stand up to much post processing.
     
    Fred, Aug 20, 2008
    #10
  11. Ken

    Ken Guest

    So which camera would you suggest for me to consider as an alternative?

    Ken
     
    Ken, Aug 20, 2008
    #11
  12. Ken

    Fred Guest

    That's a very difficult question to answer. I was toying with the idea of
    buying a TZ5 my self for several months, but at the end of the day I
    couldn't talk myself into accepting the heavily processed Panasonic look
    after having used mainly Canons for about 6 years. Of course I may be
    totally wrong, and the 10MP TZ5 may produce much less noisy and
    over-processed images, than my 5MP FZ5, but somehow I doubt it.

    Much as I would have loved the 10x zoom and pocketability of the TZ5, I
    eventually plumped for an unused Canon Powershot S80 off eBay for when my
    current S60 gives up the ghost.
     
    Fred, Aug 20, 2008
    #12
  13. Fred, the average buyer of a TZ3,4,5 are not likely to print anything bigger than A4 so it's not especially relevant what it looks like on the screen at 100%. This is afterall a point and shoot camera. I believe the TZ4 & 5 are a considerable improvement over your FZ5 wrt noise, but will still be outdone by a lot of other makes (especially canon) wrt image quality. However, I suspect people who consider the TZ range are doing so because of the lens and no other maker comes close on a pocketable point and shoot, so if thats the criteria then a slightly lower image quality is a compromise that most are probably willing to accept.
     
    Jack Torrence, Aug 20, 2008
    #13
  14. Ken, if you were considering the TZ range because of the lens then you don't really have any alternatives unless you look at bigger bulkier cameras.
     
    Jack Torrence, Aug 20, 2008
    #14
  15. Ken

    Ken Guest

    "Jack Torrence" <room217[at]overlook.freeserve.co.uk> wrote in message
    Ken, if you were considering the TZ range because of the lens then you don't
    really have any alternatives unless you look at bigger bulkier cameras.

    I like it because small enough to go in my pocket but not so small I need a
    stylus to use the buttons. Also the 10x zoom, three inch LCD and that I have
    been pleased with my FZ18 but which has proven to big to grab and take out.
    I have been in a few camera shops and it seems to be the one being shown to
    me but I am still open minded to anything matching my needs. To be fair two
    of the shops suggested anything Canon as a first choice - but which as the
    small ones are too small and the next size are bigger than the TZ range.

    Getting really confused again ;-)
     
    Ken, Aug 20, 2008
    #15
  16. Ken

    Ken Guest

    "David J Taylor"
    Not sure of the technical side but it does work on my FZ18. I need to take
    shots of buildings for work and when they (buildings) are uphill I hold the
    camera as high as I can with this setting and even at an acute angle I can
    see the picture on the LCD screen.

    Ken
     
    Ken, Aug 20, 2008
    #16
  17. Ken

    ~~NoMad~~ Guest

    Ken,

    I owned a Panasonic TZ1 and loved it but without manual controls it could be
    a bit lame.

    The TZ's are great for indoor use because of wide angle lens and fast flash
    recycling.

    I now have a Canon SX100is which is better than any of the TZ's for outdoor
    and macro use. And the manual controls allow for a much broader range of
    use. But it's slow flash recycling is very annoying.

    I'm hoping for a new SX camera from Canon with lithium battery.

    NM
     
    ~~NoMad~~, Aug 21, 2008
    #17
  18. For the size, a 3" hi-res screen, and 10x zoom there isn't an alternative. The canons probably will take slightly better quality pics, but that doesn't mean the ones from the Panasonic wouldn't be extremely good and you don't get the 10x zoom with the canons or the 28mm wide end (which for me is the main reason for looking at Panasonics - come on canon pull your finger out).
     
    Jack Torrence, Aug 21, 2008
    #18
  19. Ken

    Ken Guest

    "Jack Torrence" <room217[at]overlook.freeserve.co.uk> wrote in message

    For the size, a 3" hi-res screen, and 10x zoom there isn't an alternative.
    The canons probably will take slightly better quality pics, but that doesn't
    mean the ones from the Panasonic wouldn't be extremely good and you don't
    get the 10x zoom with the canons or the 28mm wide end (which for me is the
    main reason for looking at Panasonics - come on canon pull your finger out).

    Yes after another moment of blind panic looking through DPreviews last
    evening I need to stop worrying and just get one. I think ;-)
     
    Ken, Aug 21, 2008
    #19
  20. Bit the bullet. There is no perfect camera, they are all a compromise, either in features or image quality. For me i'd take the features over a slightly better image quality.
     
    Jack Torrence, Aug 21, 2008
    #20
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