Panasonic Lumix FZ200

July 18, 2012 | Zoltan Arva-Toth | Digital Compact Cameras | 17 Comments |
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The Panasonic FZ200 is a new super-zoom digital compact camera featuring an improved 12-megapixel CMOS sensor, a 1.31-million-dot electronic viewfinder and a 25-600mm equivalent lens with a constant f/2.8 maximum aperture throughout its zoom range. In addition to the 24x optical zoom and image quality advances, the high-speed functionality of the Lumix FZ200 enables “light-speed” auto-focus and 12fps continuous shooting at full resolution (5.5fps with AF tracking). Other notable features include optical image stabilisation, raw image capture,1920x1080 50p Full HD video recording with Dolby Digital audio, a fully articulated 3” rear screen, an enhanced Panorama Shot feature, 3D photography and advanced editing options through Panasonic’s Creative Control Mode during recording and Creative Re-touch Mode in playback. The Panasonic Lumix FZ200 camera will be available at the end of August / beginning of September for £499.

Panasonic Press Release

Panasonic LUMIX FZ200 – pushing the boundaries of high-speed super-zoom photography

Budapest, Hungary – Panasonic’s LUMIX FZ200, the latest addition to its super-zoom compact digital camera range, is designed to be the ultimate high-speed option to capture spur of the moment events in stunning image quality. With outstanding low light performance, a 24x optical zoom LEICA DC lens, and Full HD video recording, magical moments and dramatic scenery can be captured with ease and precision. 

Go further with the advanced LEICA DC lens
The LUMIX FZ200’s exceptional 24x zoom LEICA DC lens lets you go further, with a F2.8 aperture available throughout the entire zoom range. With this wide zoom ratio, alongside Panasonic’s optical image stabilisation technology POWER O.I.S., the FZ200 will give you clear, crisp, blur-free zoom shots whether you’re bird-watching or capturing live sport. Additionally, the 25mm ultra wide-angle lens has around twice the shooting area as a standard 35mm lens, providing enhanced shots of sweeping landscapes and city vistas.

Low-light capture
Pushing the boundaries of low light capture, the LUMIX FZ200’s improved 12-megapixel high-sensitivity MOS sensor and Venus Engine, maximise both the sensitivity and speed of image processing. With image capture available at up to ISO6400, the FZ200 puts beautiful nighttime photography in the palm of your hand.

High-speed photography, wherever you are
In addition to the wide zoom range and image quality advances, the high-speed functionality of the LUMIX FZ200 means you’ll never miss the perfect moment. With light-speed Auto Focus you can capture dynamic moments with precision, while Burst Shooting at 12 FPS in full resolution means subjects such as fast-moving sports stars or wildlife, can be captured with ease.

Creative control in your hands
The LUMIX FZ200 has a wide range of options that can maximise the level of creativity and control possible in a fixed lens camera. These include an enhanced Panorama Shot feature, perfect for capturing landscapes and vast architectural details. In addition, the camera offers 3D photography and advanced editing options through Panasonic’s Creative Control Mode during recording and Creative Re-touch Mode in playback.
 
Taking fixed-lens photography to the next level
Commenting on the LUMIX FZ200, Sebastian Drawert, Manager Product Marketing for LUMIX, at Panasonic Consumer Marketing Europe said: “With such a large zoom ratio including an F2.8 aperture throughout the whole zoom range, superb low-light performance and high-speed functionality, the FZ200 is the perfect option for consumers looking to take their photography to the next level in a fixed lens camera. From football games at night to wildlife far in the distance, the FZ200 will help you capture dynamic, beautiful scenes with the upmost clarity.”

Key features:

Advanced LEICA DC lens: The full range F2.8 24x optical zoom LEICA lens pushes the boundaries of fixed lens photography. With an intelligent zoom of 48x and nano-surface coating, to reduce flare and ghosts, the FZ200 is perfect for crisp, dynamic photography

Superb low light performance: The improved 12-megapixel high-sensitivity MOS sensor, Venus Engine and ISO sensitivity of up to ISO6400 mimimises noise in low-light situations

Advanced image stabilisation: Power O.I.S, available throughout all capture options including zoom and video, maximises the hand-shake correction power of the camera

Rapid capture: Fast moving subjects and objects are now easily captured thanks to industry-leading technology incorporating 12 FPS burst shooting

Full HD movie recording: The LUMIX FZ200 provides stunning 1920x1080 50p Full HD video recording with Dolby Digital audio. With recording options available in AVCHD Progressive and MP4, you get the widest compression and compatibility options

Full creative control: A wide range of manual and creative modes put the photographic control in your hands – including Creative Control features and 3D photography

Quality build and long stamina: The LUMIX FZ200 has a strong chassis and a bright, free angle 3-inch LCD. The camera also provides an operational standby for the capture of over 500 images with its 1,200 mAh stamina battery

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#1 Tapan Debnath

SUPERB!! Sound's good!! Wish to have one...

7:22 pm - Wednesday, July 18, 2012

#2 eboy

The 2.8 sounds great - i made the mistake of plunging for the fz100 a year or so ago (for my wife). The old 14mp sensor that shipped with that model is a total disgrace. More noisy than any digi camera i've ever purchased (inc a pocket fuji that's 11 years old). Unusable beyond 320 iso. Really odd images in post processing too, can hardly do anything with them in Photoshop, even with Raw, they just look odd and jarring. Panasonic realised they dropped a monumental clanger with the sensor and the fz150 dropped to a less noisy 12mp one. Looks like they still see sense with this model too and are not chasing pixel count. No consolation for me though - most disappointing electronics purchase i've made in 20 years.

3:27 pm - Thursday, July 19, 2012

#3 Bikram_Ch

The cam should be attached with too hefty price tag compare to the indian market. But still i think this cam can compete with entry-level SLRs easily... Waiting for india launch

5:57 am - Friday, July 20, 2012

#4 Heimo Guttersberger

I've the FZ150, a superb camera. The only problem was the shutter speed of 1/2000. Now, the FZ200 got the correction and pushed up to 1/4000, but I've to wait that the price drop down. This camera is unmatched in the super zoom range and will be also a thread to the entry level dslr's.

2:21 am - Monday, July 23, 2012

#5 Stephen Cohen

I am thinking about pre-ordering the FZ200, but I wonder about the image quality. So far, the few pre-production model photos I've seen do not look nearly as sharp as those from my 8 megapixel Lumix TZ4.

3:16 am - Sunday, August 19, 2012

#6 Heimo Guttersberger

Hi Stephen. Where u saw example pics of the FZ200?
Thanx 4 ur response.

8:07 am - Sunday, August 19, 2012

#7 Stephen Cohen

Heimo,

Google Lumix FZ200 (in English) you will find one or two sites with a lot of pictures of the camera and a few pictures taken with the camera. For example:

https://www.google.com/search?q=Lumix+FZ200&hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=Wto&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&prmd=imvns&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=ehMxUL3uA7Gy0AGSmIDwAQ&ved=0CGgQsAQ&biw=800&bih=441

And a better one, which has sharper pictures than the above site:

http://www.ephotozine.com/article/panasonic-lumix-dmc-fz200-hands-on-review-19711

5:32 pm - Sunday, August 19, 2012

#8 TITAN23

YOU ALL DO A GREAT JOB!!!

3:03 am - Tuesday, September 25, 2012

#9 TITAN23

SHOULD I BUY THE FZ60 OR THE FZ200?MONEY IS OKAY.
WHAT WOULD YOU ALL BUY?HELP!!!!

3:08 am - Tuesday, September 25, 2012

#10 Heimo Guttersberger

Hi Titan.
If I'm you, I would wait for more user reviews on Amazon. Maybe something is wrong with thw FZ200 - the price is now below the FZ150. I'm using the FZ150. Is a proven excellent camera. You can't get wrong with the FZ150.

8:44 am - Tuesday, September 25, 2012

#11 Stephen Cohen

I bought the FZ200.

It has almost too many options, some you'd wish would be replaced with more useful ones.. For example, you can do an automatic retouch of pictures already taken, or a "custom retouch" of them including the ability, for example, to give the picture an orange cast, BUT you can't manually change the white balance of a picture you have already taken.

I've only shot about 25 pictures, virtually all on the P = program setting. Those taken on a bright day seemed fine.

I took about 20 in a fluorescent-lit auditorium. Those taken of the audience at wide angle, f/2.8, ISO 400 looked OK on my 11" diagonal laptop screen and the auto white balance did a good job.

Those taken of small groups of people, UNDER THE SAME LIGHTING,using a telephoto setting at f/2.8 were a mixed bag: The sharpness left a lot to be desired. On my laptop screen, noise was evident, but 4x6 glossy photos of the same scenes did not show noise, and I was told that the print machine did nothing to suppress noise. Also, the auto white balance didn't do as well as on the audience shots. Sometimes faces has a slight blue/purple cast and sometimes a slight pink cast. (I didn't have time to use manual white balance.)

Also the shots of the small groups all had the same EXPOSURE on the P setting, The f-stop was f/2.8 in all of them, but the shutter speed and ISO varied for inexplicable reasons: Examples for nearly identical group shots: (SS - ISO)
1/25-800, 1/10-400, 1/60-1600.

The built-in flash is pathetic. I estimate its guide number at IS0 100 to be 8. [Guide number/distance = f-stop.] Panasonic will not provide a guide number, so I estimated it using Panasonic's statement that the flash can be used as close as 1 ft. The minimum ISO is 100 and the smallest aperture is f/8. So, at ISO 100, GN/1ft = 8, yielding GN = 8. At ISO 400 I estimate the GN to be 16. [Doubling the ISO adds one f/stop and multiplies the GN by 1.4=square root of 2.]

If this is correct, I do not see how Panasonic claims that the flash can be used at 40+ feet, because, if my calculations are correct, the ISO needed for that distance would be close to 25,000.

9:34 pm - Tuesday, September 25, 2012

#12 Stephen Cohen

Further comments on FZ200 flash:

First, I should explain that I emailed Panasonic Technical Support asking about the flash guide number. It never responded. Then I telephoned Panasonic's Technical Support. It had no information on the flash other than its range. It did not know if the flash settings were based on distance or on the light reflected from the subject or ???.

I therefore assumed that the simplest method is used, namely that the f-stop and ISO settings are calculated based on distance. It now appears that I likely was wrong.

I conducted a test of the flash in a dark hallway 15 feet from a medium-dark brown door and adjacent off-white wall. I made two exposures, both using P-Std setting(Program -Standard) and AWB (Auto White Balance). The viewfinder was completely dark despite the f/2.8 lens, so I had to guess at the target.

1) The first exposure was 2/3 door and 1/3 wall. The camera automatically chose the settings f/2.8, ISO 100, shutter speed 1/125 sec. The AWB did a good job and exposure was good.

2) The second exposure was only of the door (shot at 24x zoom) The camera automatically chose the settings f/2.8, ISO 200, shutter speed 1/125 sec. The exposure and AWB gave terrible results. Instead of showing a medium-dark brown door, the image was an over-exposed, uniform pink color..

From these results, I tentative conclude that:
a) The AWB and exposure probably work well if the scene includes some white (or possibly contrasting colors).
b) The AWB and exposure have problems if the scene is essentially one, almost uniform color.
c) The camera uses some means of adjusting the flash output.
d) The flash GN is probably closer to 40 or maybe higher.

It would be nice if Panasonic provided more technical information about a $600 camera.

12:13 am - Thursday, September 27, 2012

#13 TITAN23

DOES ANYONE KNOW OF A PROFESSIONAL REVIEW OF THE FZ200? SHOULD I BUY THE SONY HX200,THE PANNY FZ150 OR THE PANNY FZ200? ANY HELP WILL BE APPRECIATED!!!! HELP!!!!

3:38 am - Monday, October 1, 2012

#14 Heimo Guttersberger

This time, and it will be for minimum 1 year, it's the FZ200 to buy. The FZ200 have a reasonable zoom this can be managed by the stabilisation and a f/2.8 for the entire zoomrange can't get on an other super-zoom-camera.

9:14 pm - Monday, October 1, 2012

#15 ollie

Thanks, Richard for the info. Will explore further.
Regards, oliver

12:51 am - Thursday, October 25, 2012

#16 Stephen Cohen

I have been using the camera and have many more comments. However, what with my daughter getting severe food poisoning and my having just had cataract surgery, I haven't been able to recently post here. However, if you wish to see more of my comments, search for "quiddity" at the site http://www.dpreview.com/previews/panasonic-lumix-dmc-fz200/3 .

Note that I sometimes revised my opinions as I had further experience with the camera.

4:59 am - Thursday, October 25, 2012

#17 Fabio Pirovano

My Fz200 has really a film look,blacks are carbon powder...I loved every shot done...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/fabiopirovano/sets/72157631989331102/

Using flash
http://www.flickr.com/photos/fabiopirovano/8272156750/in/set-72157631989331102

7:10 pm - Friday, December 14, 2012