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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 5:09 am 
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Panasonic ZS20 / TZ30 official thread - now reviewed!

See my Panasonic ZS20 / TZ30 review!

Panasonic has just announced the latest version of its enormously popular travel-zoom camera: the new Lumix ZS20 (or TZ30 as it's known outside North America) extends the optical zoom from 16x to 20x, delivering an equivalent range of 24-480mm, making it the longest lens in a pocketable body. And it's more pocketable too at over 5mm thinner, while still featuring built-in GPS and a touch-screen. Other upgrades include 1080p video, a raft of special effects, the option to load maps for major regions from a supplied DVD, and a new sensor which Panasonic claims improves noise levels over its predecessor. Find out more in my Panasonic ZS20 / TZ30 review!

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 12:11 pm 
Sounds promising! Ill be in the market to replace my zs3 this year. Cant wait to see what the competition cranks out too..

The rapid shooting specs sound perfect! 100 shots @ 5fps who hoo..


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 1:22 am 
Did they mention at all if the camera would support RAW format and exposure control over video? Also, how does the sensor size compare with the FZ150? I realise these details may not have been released yet..

I really don't care about the GPS feature because one of the main reasons I bought a TZ10 was to use the GPS to mark cave entrance and animal coordinates in China and the camera tells me that this service is not offered here.. :x

Really liking the grip I see there.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 7:20 pm 
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MaartenSFS...don't forget this is a P&S.

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 Post subject: No RAW
PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 7:35 pm 
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>Did they mention at all if the camera would support RAW format
There is no RAW capability in the new ZS/TZ models


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 Post subject: ZS20/ZS15 thoughts
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 12:27 am 
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I have the FZ150 and was hoping Panasonic would see fit to use this sensor in the next generation of travel zooms. It appears they did; but in the ZS15 instead of the top model.

However, that's fine with me. I don't shoot video, and don't use the GPS feature on my SX230HS. Meanwhile, the ZS15 has a 3" high resolution screen, the good lens from the ZS8/10 with nano-coating, speeds from 60 seconds to 1/4000 and wellshaped front grip. It's also starting at $75 less than the top model.

However, I'll have to spend that $75 for a spare battery and a charger for it; as it appears that Panasonic has reverted to in-camera battery charging from a USB port or the supplied wall adapter. I really dislike in-camera charging as it's usually much slower than a dedicated charger, and you can't use the camera while a battery is charging. :x It actually works against the camera owner buying a spare battery if you think about it. Hopefully Panasonic will offer an optional battery charger.

I mentioned above that I own a Canon SX230HS. It's a very nice camera with a slightly faster lens than the ZS15, a 3" LCD of medium high resolution, and a battery charger. The two issues against it, the lack of a front grip and the popping up flash, have been fixed or worked around. I find 28 mm equivalent is wide enough. So, in the end it comes down to why would I change to the ZS15? I keep asking myself that and the one thing I can see that might make a difference is the reported lightning fast AF, even in low light.

Jerry

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 12:37 am 
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Check Gordon's preview again. Here's what he says about the ZS20 and I would presume it applies to the ZS15 also, but maybe not:
"Finally, a small but important upgrade which I hope to find across most point-and-shoot cameras this year is support for direct USB charging in-camera, in addition to the traditional AC charger."


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 Post subject: ZS15/20 battery charging
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 12:59 am 
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I hope that's right. You can buy a panasonic charger for about $25 USD; but I'd rather not have to. The ZS15/20 use the same BCG10 battery that's used in previous ZS models.

Thanks for the reply. I only read the part about the ZS15 as that's the model I'd be interested in. :oops:

Jerry

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 3:57 am 
I realise that this isn't a DSLR, but that doesn't stop it from having similar features, as the gap between DSLRs and compacts is closing..

Just because the last model didn't support RAW format doesn't mean this one won't - unless that has already been officially stated. :wink:

Gerald W, where did you hear that the ZS15 would use the FZ150 sensor? And if that's true, would the ZS20 sensor be better than the FZ150?? I am skeptical..


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 Post subject: FZ150 sensor
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 4:12 am 
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Just conjecture. Same type of sensor, same size, same pixel count. Why would they reinvent the wheel?

Jerry

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 Post subject: New Pana TravelZooms
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 7:30 pm 
Nice preview. I particularly like the flow of it.

I purchased Canon 230HS (as a gift), which I think is in direct competition with the Lumix travelzooms (one of the responders here also commented in comparison with the 230). She likes the 230HS, particularly as it is able to focus nicely and silently while zoomin'. Sound pickup is also good. Yet, I observed a nasty flair, even against not-really bright side source such as the sun but against cloudy yet bright sky. This shows up as LARGE oval fog/mist that spoils the video.

So, in light of the P&S cams "moving in on" MIL cams and DSLRs, it seems the optics remain the separator and if CamLabs could test for flair (side light rejection), it could be of real benefit. One outcome from the flair problem is that I would not consider Canon's G1X unless I see the flair test results somewhere. Yes, I read Pana 20mm 1.7 lens review and bought it particularly because the flair rejection is so (damn) good no hood is required.

Oh, I like USB charging because my laptop is always with me and taking several chargers (for a phone, cam) is a pain. In the future I see but one charger with several USB power-only ports -- an aftermarket is OK. Wireless (induction) charging would be ideal but, again, it should be in the laptop and work without the CPU being powered up. This is about traveling light, isn't it?


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 Post subject: USB charging
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 9:55 pm 
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I just have this thing about in-camera charging. USB or not. On my G5 an external charger cut the charging time by 60%. Plus, I could use the charger while the spare battery was charging.

Traveling light? Leave the laptop at home and take a spare battery and charger. Far lighter than the laptop.

Interesting about the flare on the SX230HS. I haven't taken that many shots with it; but no problems so far. However, it's about to go on a Caribbean cruise with my wife and I so it will get a real test there.

Flare has been another "thing" with me, too. Ruined a whole series of fall color shots because of flare caused by a lens hood of all things. The lens was an AIS Nikkor 35-105 f/3.5-4.5 with the correct Nikon hood, a clip-on affair. I thought at first it had to be the filter; but no, it was the hood. Almost no flare with just the filter or with no filter; but add the hood and there is was. Since then I'm a lot more careful, although I haven't tested the 230.

Jerry

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2012 6:05 am 
My wife has the Lumix TZ5 and I had the ZS10, which I lost. Loved both cameras. Please take some low light pictures or night shots to see if the noise levels are better.

I'm hoping the ZS20 will be my replacement camera so I can take my own pictures of Queensland next year. (see pictures for the ZS10).


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:20 am 
Does the ZS15 have the same sensor from the FZ150 while the ZS20 is getting a new sensor?


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 Post subject: reply to lawnboy
PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:47 am 
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As near as I can tell, the ZS15 does use the FZ150 sensor. At least one of the review sites seems to think so as well. I've been really impressed with the FZ150, so that sensor and processor in the ZS15 ought to be excellent.

My SX230HS did quite well on a recent cruise; although the FZ150 was better. THe biggest problem with the SX230HS is the chromatic aberration which softens high contrast edges and adds a hazy look to complex structures. The new SX260HS ought to be better with DIGIC V; but infortunately, Canon has chosen to go with a new 25-500 mm lens that's now f/3.5-6.8, where the 230 was f/3.1-5.9. Not a huge difference; but it's in the wrong direction.

Jerry

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