Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ6 Review

4.0
April 8, 2009 | Gavin Stoker |

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#1 Motte Valois

Great website to visit! Wow!
A friend of mine just bought one Lumix and she is really impressed with the quality, here in New zeland is a little pricy still, but she reckons its worth it. I have bouth a Canon A470 in a bargain of $129 (around US80) and I hae to confess the quality is really goof=d for its specs. I will certainly visit your blog in a daily basis from now!

Cheers

1:32 am - Thursday, April 9, 2009

#2 kelsci

This camera should have featured high-def video recording like the tz5. This is something that even Canon’s SX-200 has this year.

10:11 am - Thursday, April 9, 2009

#3 reddy

Very beautiful digital camera , I like this compact camera more than the huge one!

7:23 am - Friday, April 17, 2009

#4 Rex

I wasn’t able to wait for this camera to come out in the market so I got it from ebay. I’m very happy with it especially with the compact and versatile lens.

2:01 am - Sunday, April 26, 2009

#5 Sajid

Excellent Camera. Used it extensively and recommend it highly. I like its MOV quicktime format vs avi on other cameras. Only downside, battery life is not that great.

1:36 am - Monday, April 27, 2009

#6 Marc

interesting camera, but the lack of manual control (aperture and exposure) means that it has no interest at all for any amateur-photographer.

12:31 pm - Tuesday, May 19, 2009

#7 Kat

Is it true that Panasonic have stopped manufacturing batteries for the TZ6? I really want to get this one instead of the TZ7 but if I can’t get back up batteries then it’s obsolete!!

1:04 am - Friday, July 10, 2009

#8 D. Stark

@Kat:

I’m 99.9% certain the TZ6 & TZ7 use the same battery. It’s out there, but it does seem to be a little hard to find. I found an original Panny-branded one here in the U.S. for $30. Battery is the DMW-BCG10. Good luck!

5:45 pm - Thursday, July 23, 2009

#9 Kike

Hi there!

I want to buy a compact camera and very confused because I like both TZ6 and TZ7.

I’d be very grateful if someone could tell me the real differences between those models and what will you buy for these prices.

In Spain: TZ6: EUR240. TZ7: EUR320.

Will you pay 80 EUR more for the TZ7?

Thank you and sorry for my english :-S

9:21 pm - Thursday, July 23, 2009

#10 D. Stark

@Kike

I asked myself the same question many times.

The lenses are identical. The TZ7 has HD video capture with stereo sound, while the TZ6 only has DVD-quality video capture & mono sound.

They use slightly different CCDs, with the CCD of the TZ7 being slightly larger. However, all of the side-by-side tests of the TZ6/TZ7 I have seen show the picture quality to be basically the same.

If you want to capture video, go for the TZ7. If you just want to purchase a camera, go for the TZ6 and save the 80EUR!

Hasta Luego!

8:02 pm - Friday, July 24, 2009

#11 Kike

Hi D. Stark!

Thank you for your comments. I’ve read carefully both reviews and only see the differences you said.

I want this camera for taking good photos, but I’d like to capture video too but the DVD quality is much more than I need, as we need the most of the videos to share on the internet.

Another question is if the internal components of the camera will suffer with the vibrations if I put it on my motorbike. I want to record videos like this for I have a GoPro Wide, but want to use TZ’s for fitting it only on the tank or steering position. Look the video sample: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bxqwYbUljHs

As I said, I’d like to put the camera only on the first position you can see on this video.

What do you think?

8:23 pm - Friday, July 24, 2009

#12 kelsci

I was over at Steve’s Digicams. I think an alternative to the TZ6 might be the Casion Ex-S12.It has high-def video recording too. It reminds me of the TZ5. I particulaly liked the sample picture of the chinese restaurant. I could read the license plates of the parked cars.

9:14 pm - Friday, July 24, 2009

#13 VK

If you are looking for a good comparison between the two Panasonic TravelZoom models (as well as others), look at
  http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/q209grouplongzoom/

9:59 pm - Wednesday, August 5, 2009

#14 martin

Hi, i’m slightly confused.  On this website it tells me it includes Face Recognition.  I’ve just bought the camera - Litterally.. not charged it up yet and the Manual tells me Face Recognition is only available on the T7.  Another website confirms this.  Anybody confirm one way or the other before I try it? ta

5:30 pm - Tuesday, August 11, 2009

#15 D. Stark

@martin:

Face recognition is definitely there when in iA or one of the portrait scene modes. However, only the TZ7 can remember people’s faces and add their names to the EXIF data. Not a big loss, IMHO.

I just got back from a 4-day backpacking trip. Oh, the things my ZS1 (TZ6 in the US) was capable of capturing!

8:15 pm - Tuesday, August 11, 2009

#16 silvia

I want to buy the TZ6. Anybody can tell me if battery life is not great even using the camera onky for shots and not for videos?

1:32 am - Friday, August 14, 2009

#17 Dai Owen

Great little camera but I still miss an eyelevel viewfinder. The display is very bright but strong sunshine is a bit of a problem. My main gripe is the price of a genuine batttery. I tried a replacement but it was rejected by the new firmware(June 2009). Panasonic fed up with fake Panasonic batteries. This is unfair on genuine 3rd party manufacturers. £70 for a genuine battery , the camera only cost £190!!

4:00 pm - Monday, September 14, 2009

#18 MaxDiscount

If you step back the firmware to 1.1 (do a search for tz6 firmware 1.1) fake batteries will work. Firmware 1.2 stops them working.

10:39 pm - Wednesday, September 16, 2009

#19 lubo

Thank you for this comments,

I would like to buy the Panasonic TZ 6, but I do not know why the TZ 5 is still more expensiver than TZ 6?
Which Camera would you buy? and what is the difference - is there any capable difference between (or what is the difference?) CCD 1/2,33´´ (TZ5) and 1/2,5´´ (tz6)????

Thanks

8:44 am - Sunday, November 22, 2009

#20 Lottie

I have just bought the TZ7 last month.  Although it is takes great pictures and hd videos, after copying everything taken to my computer and onto a DVD, my DVD player is unable to read the content.  TV is HD (Aquos) and my DVD recorder is a new LG model.  Any advice from the experts, please?

3:36 pm - Tuesday, December 22, 2009

#21 Kevin

Hi Lottie,
I have the ZS1 for photos and use a Canon HG10 camcorder for video (successor is the HG20 and 21).  The camcorder records in HD like the Panasonic ZS3.  You need to run HD video footage through HD capable software in order to burn DVDs that can play in DVD players. Otherwise the DVDs can only be played in PCs, using HD capable player programs like WinDVD. 
My camcorder records in AVCHD (Audio Video Compressed High Definition), for which it was difficult to get compatible software for burning DVDs in 2008.  Now that AVCHD has been out for 2 years, there should be more affordable AVCHD video editing software available.  I use Corel VideoStudio Pro X2 Editing software - very good.  But, I would think Panasonic includes basic HD editing software with the camera??  Canon does with the HD camcorders - though very basic. 

In sum, if I copy HD video clips to the PC and burn a DVD, it will not run in a DVD player, only on the PC (using HD player program).  But, if I run the clips through HD editing software, and burn the DVD from there, no problems.  Most software allows you to burn in HD or normal DVD format.  Hope this helps, regards, Kevin

12:09 pm - Monday, December 28, 2009

#22 Louise

I desperately need help to find a good but very easy-to-use camera!  Can somebody advise me???

Firstly, I am a beginner, and although enjoy using my camera, am not planning to become a pro.
So I would like a SIMPLE and EASY TO USE camera!!
But I don’t want to compromise on the picture quality and want a high megapixel/optical zoom digital camera!

Help!!!!

11:25 am - Friday, January 1, 2010

#23 Leanne

Hi Louise,

Like you I wanted an easy to use, point and shoot camera.
I read lots of reviews and finally decided on the Panasonic TZ6…..WHAT A GREAT PURCHASE!!

  I am not a great photographer by any means, quite simply mummy of 4 that has the camera out at any opportunity, be it at home, out at the park or out with friends etc.

I tested the camera out yesterday at the park with the kids and got some cracking shots, already put em on my digital photo frame and admiring them!!

This camera is fab, very user friendly, feels top quality, the zoom is amazing, without losing picture quality, and even a novice like me is finding the manual very easy to follow.

I must admit I dont really understand iso, white balance, etc and all the other tweaks you can do with this camera…(please except my apologies if I sound ignorant!!)  I have just alternated between iAuto (which really does focus on the subject you are snapping and take the pic for you using what settings it thinks will produce a great picture…it sure works too!!)  and MS I think this is my scene where you can select a certain scene i.e night mode, got some good shots of the fireworks last night, even though I’m sure there is a dedicated fireworks setting…I’ve yet to get that far into my manual about all those extra settings!!
Macro mode is also superb!

The long and short of my post (apologies to those who have nodded off!!  :o)  is that this is a fab camera,worth every penny, produces fantastic photos with very little effort, I would HIGHLY recommend it….

When I was looking Amazon.co.uk were one of the cheapest at the time….  Buy one…you wont be disappointed!!

One question though for anyone with more sd card knowledge than myself…and that’s not much!!....

I am currently using a microsd card in an adapter in my camera, whilst the photos are fab, would it make any difference at all if I just used a normal size SD card???, think I remember reading somewhere that it will, and that a panasonic card coupled with the panasonic camera works best???.....Is this just bull, just a sales thing to get you to buy a panasonic SD card or actually true????

Any replies greatfully received!! 

Thanks for reading, and any further tips regarding using my great posh new camera wouldn’t go a miss!  :o)

Happy New Year!! 

Leanne x

5:25 pm - Friday, January 1, 2010

#24 Louise

@ Leanne

THANK YOU!!!!! You’re a star!! :)

I kind of thought about the TZ65 but wasn’t sure if I was hitting above my belt really (I too am a mummy who likes to get nice photos of family days out!)

I didn’t want a camera that was “too clever” if that makes sense (as it would be truely wasted on me!) but still want a good one!

Many thanks Leanne, I think I will go ahead with the TZ65

Happy New Year!

Louise x

6:48 pm - Friday, January 1, 2010

#25 Leanne

Your welcome Louise!!

Glad to point you in the right direction, I hope you get your hands on one and are as happy with it as I am with mine!!  :)

Happy snapping!!

Leanne x

8:18 pm - Friday, January 1, 2010

#26 steph

well loving the camera so far the quality is amazing but when going to view the pictures some of them are a black screen..i dont understand tries using a class 6 memory card but it hasnt changed anything and its really annoying..i tried it at the one at work and it does the same thing so it isnt that the camera is faulty and the memory card shows all photos on the computer so it isnt the memory card either!!!help!!has anyone else encountered this problem?

8:31 pm - Monday, January 4, 2010

#27 Luka

Hello. I’m looking for a new camera for a few months, and I can’t decide. I like TZ6 and Canon SX200 IS, but i don’t like fact that they both use Li-ion battery. Is there a similiar camera that uses AA bateries?
Thx

9:11 pm - Monday, January 4, 2010

#28 lubo

Luka:

I had the same question - and finally I bought both cameras - one for my father :) When I saw both cameras, i would take TZ6…..is smaller, compakter, smaller dysplay - BUT this display shows MUCH better actual picture as this in Canon. Canon can HD videos, has 12 mpix….TZ only 10, but this pictures are greater ( with 8 GB card you make with TZ6 - cca 1600 pictures and with Canon 2500 in full quality).....I have seen same tests, this cameras are fast same, but in same details lumix makes better fotos, the price is better…I wanted to buy the best - for me was Canon…..but I am not profesional, I cant see the difference….canon has maybe better chip, but OPTIK von LUMIX is PERFECT…..when you zoom - it makes no noise and is compakter….But by canon you can make your own camera settings by makin fotos…....(i use AUTO mode).....by TZ6 is only INTELIGENT auto mode…..
The decision is on YOU, but you can save same money when you buy Lumix….
...finally i like both cameras….

10:18 pm - Monday, January 4, 2010

#29 Louise

Hi,

I have just bought the TZ65 and also a panasonic 4gb SD card.

Does anyone know whether it matters what size GB sd card one uses?

I just plumped for 4GB because I don’t know any better, but then I wondered whether it made a difference to the photo quality to have a higher one (ie a 32GB)?! 

Cheers
Louise x

3:10 pm - Wednesday, January 6, 2010

#30 D. Stark

@Louise:

Oh, heavens, no. The size of the card only impacts the number of large photos you can take. I suppose if you had a REALLY small card you might want to set the camera to take 3 megapixel pictures to compensate, but that 4GB should be good for, what, 550+?

4:28 pm - Wednesday, January 6, 2010

#31 David

Hello,
I was wondering about the quality of the sound in the video recordings made with this camera, it is able to pick up people’s voices well? I would like to make small clips of family as well as take photos, so the sound in the videos (specially voices) is important. I would like to get this camera over its big bother (TZ7, ZS3) don’t need HD really, but want good sound, thanks.

4:36 am - Monday, January 11, 2010

#32 Lottie

Hi David,

The sound is really good, however the TZ7 video sound quality is simply awesome!

4:42 pm - Tuesday, January 12, 2010

#33 David

@ Lottie

Thanks for the info, I was looking for a camera with more zoom than average and video with good sound for short family clips,and had narrowed my options to this ZS1 and Fuji F70EXR, but was really leaning to this Panasonic ZS1, for the better video function, had tried a Samsung SL720, video was great but really poor sound, ended up returning it. So this time before buying I wanted to get opinions about the sound quality first. I think I will buy this ZS1 over the ZS3, (better for my budget right now)
Thanks again.

3:14 am - Wednesday, January 13, 2010

#34 Andrew

Hi, I’m now going to change my old compact (Lumix LX-2) to a something new one with better picture at high ISO. According German “Fotomagazin” Panasonic TZ6 is MUCH better than TZ7 in picture quality due to higher dynamic range and better noise at iso800. I have an question - why on Photographyblog TZ6 (ZS1)is only 4 points for image quality and TZ7 (zs3) is 5 points - actually better than Canon G10?

1:56 pm - Thursday, January 14, 2010

#35 alistair young

does the TZ6 have the same annoying dial on the right hand side that was picked up on the tz7 review? that is easy to move so you have to keep putting it back to th right mode example pulling out of your pocket? i have a old pentax compact that does that and belive me it is really annoying

9:49 pm - Monday, April 19, 2010

#36 Pete Fairweather

I just bought a Lumix TZ6 based on all the great reviews I had read on various sites.  My main reason for trading in my last Fuji, a S5700, was it’s size, as such a camera, with it’s case and accessories, can really eat up your hand luggage allowance on flights (as I wouldn’t like to put a camera in the hold luggage).

I looked at the fantastic, SLR quality sample images (especially the Mandarin duck) on this site and that was enough to convince me. But, beware!! you will never achieve photo’s such as these with a TZ6. 

I have found that the realistic colours are the only thing to commend photo’s taken with this camera.  Soft focus and motion blur blight the average photo. Also, trying to hold the camera rock steady so as not to induce seasickness from the continually moving image on the LCD screen is nigh on impossible.

Don’t get me wrong, the build quality and the specifications are great, but I wanted to be able to take good photo’s and I’m afraid that this camera just does not allow that. I have produced better images with a little Kodak easyshare (4x optical zoom and 4mp).

5:09 pm - Saturday, May 15, 2010

#37 alistair young

thanks pete this is the only site ive found that you can get truthfull answers and yours has been a great review for me im getting more swayed towards a samsung as theres some negativity about the tz range i just want a simple camera thats not going to have annoying faults on it and a manufacturer that tries to understand what most people want from a camera not about technical data so much and how many megapixels just how the camera performs in the real world

11:46 am - Sunday, May 16, 2010

#38 Pete Fairweather

Hi Alistair,

An update since I posted my previous comments. I took the camera back to the shop from where I had bought it for testing. I received it back and apparently no fault had been found.  All I can say is that it has taken much better photo’s since then, some of which are of quite a high quality.

As I had said in my previous write up, I like the quality build of this camera and its impressive range of functions. Since its return I am also quite pleased with some of the photo’s I have taken.

However, I would still maintain that it is not as good as I had believed that it would be.  I think that at this price there are plenty of alternatives worth looking at. I would definitely advise getting something with a viewfinder, in bright daylight the screen can be difficult to view (even with an anti-glare screen protector fitted).  Also, you really do need to have very steady hands to avoid the motion blur.

11:01 am - Tuesday, May 18, 2010

#39 Sara

Hi,
Which camera is the best buy - TZ6 or TZ7? What’s the main difference really - except that TZ6 is cheaper?
It’s mainly a camera for great easy-to-take photos we are looking for.
Is the camera slow?
Thanks in advance,
Sara

8:43 am - Tuesday, May 25, 2010

#40 Pete Fairweather

Hi Sara,

I think you’ll find that there are three main differences between the TZ6 and TZ7.

1. The TZ7 has a slightly larger, 3” LCD
  display,  compared to a 2.7” LCD display
  on the TZ6.
 
2. The TZ7 is capable of HD movie recording and
  has stereo microphones/speakers - the TZ6 uses
  motion jpeg and has mono microphone/speaker.

3. They both have Face Recognition but the TZ7
  can ‘remember’ faces and also can use ‘Face
  Recognition’ in movie mode.

To date I have found that the TZ6 is plenty fast enough for most types of photographs.  The only time I have felt it is a bit slow is when trying to capture images of wildlife.  Even then, if you have the patience, you can usually get the shot that you want. 

Being used to using a camera with a viewfinder, I do find it a little difficult to frame the shot on the LCD display - especially in bright sunshine!

I believe that both cameras are identical in their photo shooting abilities.  Initially I was not at all impressed with the quality of the photo’s the TZ6 took. However, since it was checked out by the camera shop where I bought it, I am becoming more impressed each time I use it.

In conclusion I would say that, as there is only £10 of a price difference on Amazon at the moment, you might as well go for the TZ7 and get the added functionality of the HD movie recording along with the slightly larger LCD. 

I would advise buying a ‘Delkin Pop Up Hood’ - 2.7” (TZ6) OR 3.0” (TZ7),  which is also available on Amazon, for the LCD display of whichever model you choose.

Hope this was of some help - Pete

6:33 pm - Tuesday, May 25, 2010

#41 alistair young

thanks pete i also still following your threads and its useful….............. would you buy any other camera in this price range seeing as this bracket changes so often with new models coming up all the time?

9:46 pm - Tuesday, May 25, 2010

#42 Pete Fairweather

Hi Alistair,

Good to hear from you again. As you suggest, we are being spoilt for choice with so many new models coming onto the market in this price range.

Prior to buying the TZ6 I was going to purchase one of the Canon Powershots, I particularly liked the look of the SX120 IS which allows greater control over the images you take with its range of manual functions.  As my A3 and A4 printers are both Canon I felt that I might also achieve more consistent colour management results by reducing the number of ICC profiles being used.  What decided me against this camera in the end was the greater zoom on the TZ6, being able to get a better deal on the TZ6 and comparing the reviews of both cameras. 

As I mentioned in my the first comment that I posted, I have had several Fuji Finepix bridge camera’s and they were all excellent. However, I felt that for my needs, a smaller, superzoom camera was what I needed.

I haven’t had any experience of Samsung camera’s (unless you count mobile phones - lol) so am unable to comment on them, but they seem to be getting good reviews.

Regards - Pete

3:07 am - Wednesday, May 26, 2010

#43 Sara

Hi Pete,
Thanks a lot! I think I’ll go for TZ6 though. We have nice camcorder so no need for flashy video functionality.

Regards,
Sara :)

7:56 am - Wednesday, May 26, 2010

#44 bob

which should i choose ? zx1 or tz6 (same price)
a quick reply would be appreciated. thanks bob.

3:27 am - Monday, June 21, 2010

#45 bob

follow-up, this will be my first digital camera

3:34 am - Monday, June 21, 2010

#46 Pete Fairweather

Hi Bob,

It really depends on what you want the camera for. I’ve not seen the ZX1, but on paper it appears to be superior to the TZ6 in all aspects except the optical zoom (ZX1 = 8x, TZ6 = 12x).

If it’s for family photo’s and that type of thing I would say that the ZX1 appears to be the better deal.  It’s higher resolution (12mp v. 10mp), enhanced image stabilisation and quicker start-up times should make it ideal for party pic’s etc.  It looks like the battery will last longer between charges as well. You also get a range of body colour options with this model which will be of interest to some.

If you can go and look at the two cameras ‘in the flesh’ I would advise doing so, although cosmetically they are very similar, you will be able to see things like the zoom factor and the Power O.I.S. in action.

Hope this is of some help - Pete

12:07 am - Tuesday, June 22, 2010

#47 annie campbell

i have not been happy with my panasonic TZ6 since i bought it. pictures quality seems poor, some blurred and when i zoom in and try to print in boots etc im told image will not print clearly because of resolutions or something. colours dont seem sharp and when i view after i have taken them they look very dark. before i go buy another one i wondered if i have the menu settings right. i am particually confused on picture size, aspect ratio, intelligent iso, af mode, pre af, and colour mode. what should these settings be. i would be very grateful if someone could help me as i paid a fair bit for this camera and dont want to replace it unless i have to. thanks

4:03 pm - Tuesday, August 17, 2010

#48 alistair young

i would take it back to the shop where you bought it if you read through the other comments you will se a guy took his back and they said there was nothing wrong with it but when he got it home everything was how it should be as if by MAGIC! dont despair im sure the settings are wrong or something

7:43 pm - Tuesday, August 17, 2010

#49 Dotty

I’m a little confused. I’ve been reading the good reviews for TZ6, but Panasonic’s site doesn’t show a TZ6. It seems almost the same as the ZS6, but specs aren’t quite the same. I’m in the US; do they name them differently in different parts of the world? Also, when I click on where to buy the TZ6, it shows the ZS1 in the new window. Can someone help me figure this out?

7:55 pm - Monday, September 6, 2010

#50 Peter Fairweather

Hi Dotty,

It can be quite confusing the way these companies name the same models differently for different markets.

Basically this Panasonic camera has one name (ZS1) for the American market, and another (TZ6) for the European market.

It is exactly the same camera, just named differently depending on which market you are in.

Hope this answers your question.

Regards - Pete

10:41 pm - Monday, September 6, 2010

#51 Dotty

Thanks so much for your reply. Is the ZS6 (currently sold by Costco) the same as the ZS1? What I have seen compares it favorably to the ZS7, only without the GPS and for about $100 less.

12:26 pm - Tuesday, September 7, 2010

#52 Peter Fairweather

Hi Dotty,

No, the ZS6 is not the same as the ZS1.

The ZS6 has a larger LCD screen (3” rather than 2.7”), higher resolution (12Mp rather than 10Mp), HD movie capability and more manual settings etc. than the TZ6/ZS1.

I reckon for the price difference you could do without the GPS - if you want to add locations to your photo’s you can always do this in iPhoto or other image browsing/editing software, once your photo’s are on a computer.  I wonder if GPS might also be very heavy on your batteries.

Regards - Pete

2:42 pm - Tuesday, September 7, 2010

#53 Dotty

Thanks so much for your quick reply. Yes, the drain on the battery is mentioned, but you are able to turn it off/on.

I appreciate your help. Think I’ll go with the ZS6.

Thanks,
Dotty

3:10 pm - Tuesday, September 7, 2010

#54 Kevin

I have a 14 month old Lumiz DMC-TZ65, hardly used.
When taking a photo, the viewing screen is black, wwhen I review photos taken, no image just black. All other functions seem to be working okay. I have checked memory card etc. Any ideas anyone?

4:23 pm - Saturday, June 25, 2011

#55 Chris

We made 12000 photos in three years, really fond on this camara because of the size and picture quality!!!
However, now the zoom button starts failing. And the quality of photo in low-light is not good enough.
Next year I hope a new TZ30? is available with improved quality of button and chip.

4:32 pm - Saturday, August 13, 2011

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