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I purchased this abroad in the summer of 2007 and remember paying around £200 for it. Before that I'd used disposables or film cameras. The camera was pretty new having only been announced at the end of January of the same year. I was a complete noob and didn't know much about cameras, viewing this one that the sales assistant was trying to sell to me with great scepticism. I finally bought it and soon used it very regularly, I also got the extra surprise of receiving some freebies with purchase: lovely camera case, wipes, miniature tripod...
It has a lovely Leica lens with the camera being one of the best zoom cameras back then for this size at 10x optical zoom, combined with a wide angle lens of 28mm. The screen size is absolutely lovely and takes up most of the space at the back of the camera being at around 6 x 4.5cm. The camera is extremely compact and not very bulky at, I make it, 10.5 x 5.5 x 3.5 cm at the thickest points. It's also pretty portable at 232g and it fits into all my bags with no problems - I like to take photos regularly!
The sensor resolution is 7.2 megapixels which is up from the previous 2 models in this line, the TZ1 AND TZ2. There is also nice features such as the image stabiliser and the ability to take videos of 840 x 480 pixels quality at 30 frames a second. The sound quality is also pretty good and I've been satisfied when playing back clips including one from a piano concert. I wouldn't have minded if the camera couldn't take video clips, since it's already very good.
I also like the built in lens cover that is really slick - it protects the lens and opens up fluidly whenever you want to take a photo. The pictures are displayed in a really nice and clear way - you can click through the dates very quickly to find specific photos you took and then choose to view these sets of photos in various sizes alongside each other in grid form; this makes it super easy to find the picture you're looking for. Despite having it for such a long time, there are still some functions that I don't really use such as the white balance adjustment function. Like other similar cameras you can pick different modes by just using the dial at the top e.g. flash, portrait mode, night scenery mode, sports mode, fireworks mode etc.. There are also several other modes that I don't use.
It's pretty intuitive to use with the zoom button located where the camera button is. The dial is pretty self explanatory and the other buttons are labelled in a non-confusing way. The camera can also shoot continuously for 3 frames/sec or 2 frames/sec which has been really handy when you think you might just miss something! Another handy feature which is great for group photos, or if you like taking pictures of yourself, is the timer mode which gives you either a 10 seconds interval to get everyone into position, or a 2 seconds interval.
The battery life is fairly good with one charge lasting me around 2 weeks at a time where I'll either sporadically take the camera out when a photo opportunity arises, or use it for a few hours at a time when I go for long trips. The charging time is over an hour, so when I'm in a rush I'll only manage to get a quarter of the full charge (around 20 minutes) - this has been good enough for a day trip when used wisely!
The camera is available in three colours: blue, black and silver. I have the silver version and it looks pretty good apart from the scratches on the metal in the lens area since I managed to drop it a few times from about a metre... painful... the camera has still performed like normal although I have noticed that the lens takes longer to come out/retract back into the casing which can be annoying when you REALLY want to take a picture quickly. The metal body of the camera has no doubt offered really good protection overall though.
I used to transfer photos via a USB cable connected to the camera and this could take forever, with the risk of me knocking the camera by accident... thankfully I bought an SD card reader for around £1 (I've reviewed this) which worked like a dream and is doing very well still.
I definitely think this is a brilliant camera even if it's 5 years ago since it was first announced. I will only buy a new camera to replace this when it is really on its last legs, but at present apart from the lens retraction being slow, it's working perfectly and I have no complaints.
NB* When this camera came out it was awarded a host of prizes including: the TIPA "Best Superzoom Digital Camera" award and the EISA "European Compact Camera" award in 2007.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 is the best camera I have ever owned! I originally bought it as I went to New Foundland on holiday and was disappointed with the pictures I got from my camera that only had a 4x optical zoom so I vowed that when I got home I would find a camera with a better zoom.
I went into several camera shops requesting a camera with a 10x zoom and they all recommended this one.
The camera comes with a 28mm wide angle Leica lens and I have now owned it for a couple of years and I absolutely love it, obviously I bought it for the zoom but it does so much more than that - it has a large 3inch LCD screen, a dial on top of the camera giving you 10 quick choose options of: Playback, Simple Mode, Scene Mode 1 and 2, Clipboard, Print Mode, Motion Picture, Macro, Normal Picture and Intelligent ISO.
Apart from all of that in the main menu you can adjust the white balance, picture ratio and quality, adjust the exposure and set the camera to burst mode.
The only downside of this camera is if you want a compact, it is a little bulky but it more than makes up for this with the great quality photos that you get.
There are many technical details about this item attached to the details, so I will only go into minor detail about those.
I couldn't decide whether to buy an SLR or a super-duper compact camera. My reason for choosing this? I knew I couldn't be bothered to take a whopping great camera out with me every time I went to an event or was in a beautiful landscape. I wanted something powerful, neat, compact and easy to transport.
As far as size goes it is 10cm x 6.5 cm big and about 4cm wide, so a bit chunkier than the compact diigital cameras you can buy. I wouldn't buy this if you want something slim and lightweight as I think the design is actually quite bulky for a compact camera. The screen size is 9cm diagonally and people often marvel at how clear the picture is on the screen to look at once you have taken the photograph. The other thing about this is that it is not the most lightweight camera I have ever held, but it doesn't weigh loads either (check on the tech details for weight specs).
There is an easy on/off button that slides across on the top of the camera. It is actually a very easy camera to use. There is a wheel that has all the options for you - some of which I haven't mastered yet. These include "normal picture" so I often use this as it is ideal for beginners, then there are other choices that allow you to take "burst" shots so very very quick multiple shots within a second. There is a macro setting fortaking closeups, a motion picture for taking short videos, a playback to see your pictures, and 2 other items that Im not sure what they are.
In addition to that there are 2 "scene" options on the wheel which allow you to get the camera to setup things in various situations e.g a sunset (camera enhances colours), the beach (camera changes to accomodate glare and reflection), snow (camera changes to accomodate glare from snow). I find these options really good as the hard work of photo taking is removed, but you are able to take amazing pictures without too much effort!
There is a self timer which gives you 10 seconds to run away and pose, this is really useful and easy to use. There is a flash which is easy to put on and off and the delete options include :single shot, multi shot delete or all delete.
The camera I have is silver, but think they come in black now as per the picture here. Mine also has around 7 million pixel resolution, which isn't as much as the super resolution of 10mil or 12 mil you can now get, but 7million pixels return photos of around 4Mb when transferred onto a computer which is actually quite large when you can usually only send 10Mb by e-mail at any one time, so bear in mind that pixels are not always what matter ;)
The best feature Ive left until last. The 10 times optical zoom. It is absolutely fabulous for taking all sorts of shots. The camera does all the focus work for you, you press the button half way, it beeps which means it has focused, press the full way and bobs your uncle a perfect photo every time.
Had mine for almost 2 years and never had any problems *touch wood* it is very durable and has been dropped multiple times without any problems.
Would buy 10 more of these if I had the money. You won't regret it.
Had this camera for a couple of years now and had no problems with it. The 10 x optical zoom is a big plus and as cameras go it is very easy to navigate through the menu options.
The camera has two clever functions, the ability to brighten the screen at a touch of a button which allows you to see the image in bright sunlight, and secondly the ability to change the picture angle to allow you to still easily see the image if your holding the camera above your head. The large screen does sit slightly raised and so more prone to scratches and scuffs.
Battery life is really good and an energy saving option turns the display off, if no buttons are pressed within a set time. The memory card slots in next to the battery and can be removed without removing the battery, all the connection covers are plastic so not the cheaper rubber ones as on some cameras.
Picture quality is very good outdoors but indoors it can produce poorer quality images unless the camera settings are altered or flash used. A simple dial on the top of the camera allows you to navigate through the options which then appear on the display, as most digital cameras it has quite a lot of picture options pre-programmed but also allows you to alter individual settings like white balance, ISO settings, shutter speeds, colour mode. Picture sizes of 4:3, 3:2 or 16:9 are available.
As for point and click it takes about 6 seconds from turning the camera on to taking the first photo, the camera has a small anti shake button on the top which allows 2 options, this reduces the number of blurred images taken.
I got this after looking around for a camera with more optical zoom than the usual three mega pixels. It has plenty of settings for all occasions which do make a difference and arent just there for show. The photo quality is superb even when zoomed in 10x. The wide lens is excellent for capturing the 'big picture'. The camera is simple to use, both taking photos and reviewing them. The video function on here is also excellent with a good picture and good sound. The body of the camera does look a little cheap, but you soon get over this when you start using it! The camera focuses for a second when taking pictures to make sure that there is no blur, which enhances your photos enormously meaning you dont get the shaky ones when you come to upload them. Overall a brilliant camera which is highly recommended, Light and compact and brilliant for everyday use!
I bought the Panasonic Lumix TZ3 for concerts and gigs and it is definitely the best camera I have owned. The 10x zoom is impressive and the large screen on the back shows your pictures off in great quality which is not lost when uploading the photos onto your computer. It is light and compact and very easy to use! It is very simple to view your photos back and also to take videos and select settings for the camera to suit the different types of pictures you might want to take. I especially use the high definition function when at concerts and it definitely sharpens up an otherwise dark and blurry photo at the press of a button! I would recommend this camera for its all round quality and it looks great too! It is definitely great value for money for anyone who wants to capture those really special moments!
I absolutely love taking pictures, and with a holiday coming up and a camera that needed updating, I chose this Panasonic Lumix. I'd heard good things about this camera, but what closed the deal for me was the excellent zoom and the huge screen on the back for viewing your pictures. The camera can seem a bit daunting at first as theres lots of buttons and menus, but you can pick it all up relatively quickly and if you've got some idea of the functions of a digital camera in the first place you'll be fine. There is LOADS of different modes, including an underwater one (you have to buy some sort of underwater case for the camera first!!) which takes brilliant pictures underwater. I tested this snorkelling in Egypt and the pictures were amazing quality. Way way better than those fun camera things!! (although it is a bit daunting putting your expensive camera in the sea!) You get a rechargable battery with it, and it lasts ages. The only thing to be aware of is that, as with most cameras nowadays, there's no viewfinder.
But this is buy far the best camera I've ever had. Its fantastic!
What an amazing little camera! It has so many functions, I suppose it could be a little confusing at first, but the booklet is full of tips on taking the best pictures. It's very stylish, and a handy size. I love the x10 zoom, one of the best for a camera of it's class. It's great for preventing those blurry photos due to shaking hands. It has a huge screen on the back, though it has no viewfinder - personally I don't find that a problem. The rechargeable battery lasts for approx. 400 pics. It really is such a great little camera for it's price.
Incredible camera. Picture quality is great with this 7.2 mp device. the 10x optical zoom cannot be found anywhere on any other camera out in the market right now. There are slew of functions that you can use to take artistic/professional picture with. For the beginners this camera may be a little too much, but it's still pretty beginner friendly. For the seasoned photographers this is one of the best quality cameras out in the market right now. Accessories such as high speed memory card may become pricey, but unless you're hardcore photographer, a simple 4gb memory card should suffice. The LCD screen is about 3". Get an extra battery because the zooming will use it up pretty quickly. All in all, this is a great buy for me.