|Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ7 Megazoom camera
With the launch of the Panasonic LUMIX TZ7, we were curious to see which specifications Panasonic had changed in order to continue the success of its predecessors. We were pleasantly surprised to see the amount of effective pixels kept relatively low and the optical zoom lens replaced by a newer version with an even larger range. The ingredients were all there to offer Panasonic a chance to keep up or even increase its market share in this segment. However; it won't be that easy this year. In addition to the ongoing worldwide financial crisis, there are other rivals in the field that have enhanced their assortment with similar cameras, which might make it hard.
Panasonic DMC-TZ7 camera in practise
Our first acquaintance with the TZ7 in practice was pleasant and very similar to the experience we had earlier with its predecessors. The handy compact format is definitely a plus and it stands for easy shooting in combination with the large zoom range supported by the MEGA O.I.S. system. We have mainly compared the pictures taken in practice combined with the technical DIWA tests to those of its predecessor. From this, we can conclude that the Panasonic LUMIX DMC-TZ7 has generally improved.
Key points to improve the Panasonic TZ7
Yet, we do have some comments on a small number of items. We think it's high time to change the command dial on top of the camera, so that it won't unintentionally change the setting as easily as it does now. Besides that, the shiny buttons on the back may look nice, but you can't always read them properly, especially in bright sunlight as the buttons tend to shine as brightly as the sun! The shortcut to start recording a video is very comfortably placed right underneath your thumb, but it does make for many unintended videos. As a user you can probably get accustomed to these flaws, although competitive brands prove that it can also be done otherwise.
Panasonic Lumix TZ7 signal / noise ratio
It's also sad that the Panasonic LUMIX TZ7 has to give in when it comes to noise compared to its predecessor, despite the slight increase of the amount of effective pixels with 1 Megapixel. The TZ7 performs well to excellently up to and including ISO 400 to only show visible noise at ISO 800. Thankfully, the MEGA O.I.S. image stabilizer helps in not having to use a high ISO that soon, but it remains a pity.
Panasonic TZ7 : A high quality Megazoom camera
On the other hand; the dynamic range of the Panasonic TZ7 has slightly improved and is able to produce details in the light and dark areas in a picture without getting white-washed or blotted, up to and including ISO 800. What we are particularly fond of is the optical quality of the 12x zoom lens. The 25-300mm range is almost consistent as for its quality, which is quite an achievement. As manufacturer, you can only wish for a lens like this and the fact that the Panasonic DMC-TZ7 has been equipped with it is without question an advantage. This brings us to the final conclusion; the Panasonic LUMIX DMC-TZ7 is a worthy successor of the TZ5. Although there are some minor flaws and the TZ7 does drop a stitch when it comes to signal/noise ratio, this camera still belongs to the absolute top of the current Megazoom cameras. Once you know how to use the MEGA O.I.S. to its maximum potential, thus working your way around the high ISO values, you will possess a high quality Megazoom camera with the Panasonic LUMIX TZ7. A top model!