Product Type: Panasonic digital cameras
Newest Review: ... have been to some hot, sunny places in the last 18 months and have probably only encountered a problem about half a dozen times. The scree... more
Superb camera, particularly if outdoor photography is your thing
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ6
Member Name: MCIS
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ6
Advantages: Excellent optical AND digital zoom
Disadvantages: The battery compartment cover is a bit weak
I recently spent a lot of time researching the Panasonic TZ6 before I purchased it, comparing it with other cameras in it's class, as I needed a new camera and I'm a fairly casual amateur photographer; I like to get out and about hiking, mountain biking, and take plenty of pictures. I'm lucky enough to live in a very scenic part of England, right by the coastline, and there is plenty to capture at any time of year. I needed a good zoom and wide angle for all those landscape shots, and according to the reviews, the TZ6 seemed to be the best all round (or at least, the most consistently recommended). The first positive thing about the TZ6, for me, is the remarkably good quality optical - and, amazingly, digital zoom. The TZ6 is the first digital camera I would recommend as having a very good digital zoom (for those who don't know, optical zoom is always what you want to go for over and above a digital zoom - the digital quality is usually awful). I've managed to take a few clear, printable pitures at full zoom (around 30x) and nearly always between 12-25. 12x is perfect. I tested it on a very snowy afternoon, and the lighting was a bit low - I also switched off the flash as it seemed to be going off all the time (but that was most likley due to the conditions outside). Pictures are crisp and clear, and the Macro mode (used when you want to zoom in very close to a subject... it will usually blur out the background and focus on what's in shot) is very good. This is the fifth or sixth digital camera I have owned, and it's head and shoulders above the rest - I purchased it specifically for the wide angle and zoom, and they both perform brilliantly. It's very difficult to fault the TZ6 - if you're anything like me, not exactly a fully fledged amateur photographer, but more than an occasional snapper, I would highly recommend the TZ6. The cons? That's a tough one... the battery compartment is flimsy, but don't let that create an impression in your mind that it'll be popping open every five minutes; it's secure, just not as sturdy as it could be. The flash seems to be necessary for everything other than a perfectly clear day, but that's maybe a harsh assessment as I am testing it in the middle of winter. Oh, and Panasonic have been very sly when it comes to replacement or spare batteries. They released firmware which means you can't use anything but official Panasonic batteries with the camera - usually coming in at a hefty £40 however, a company called Inov8 have produced batteries which are now compatible with the new firmware, and are half the price. I haven't used the video function, but then again, I think the whole upgrade to HD, stereo etc in a digital camera is a bit of a con anyway. In terms of taking photographs, this is as good as you will get within an affordable price range, before taking a step up to DSLR.
Summary: Utterly recommended for the keen photographer, landscapes and detail are fantastic!
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