Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ7 Review

5.0
March 26, 2009 | Mark Goldstein |

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#201 Florin E

I can hear the zoom while recording??!i´ts that normal?AF noise really loud??
Any help?
sorry for my english.

2:43 am - Friday, October 23, 2009

#202 malex

#200 Dominic, I would suggest buying cheapest camera you can find that is capable of taking decent pictures, just to last your holiday. Then when you get home you can look around for best price for camera of your choice. Remember that if you buy an expensive camera in Rio, and it becomes faulty, the warranty probably will not cover you anywhere else in the world.

~200 Florin E, this was a problem with some early TZ7 and if you read early postings and reviews, I believe there was a firmware update to rectify this, but if you have only just purchased your camera, I would return it to shop as faulty and get a new one.(look at ‘version display’ (menu/setup/page5), if it says Firmware 1.0, you have an early model. If you have had camera for a while, it is easy to update firmware. Version 1.1 if you do not want lock to prevent use of non Panasonic batteries or version 1.2 if you will only use Panasonic batteries

8:37 am - Saturday, October 24, 2009

#203 Florin E

Really thanks malex for reply.Me gusta la TZ7,es una buena camara y muy bonita.
I will update de firmware to 1.1(y don´t whant to use only Panasonic batteries).Wrong?..
Tengo la ultima version.Firmware 1.2,but on video playback y can hear noises(when zooming and C-AF).
¨I would return it to shop as faulty and get a new one..¨
..y wish..but y buy the camera from the site http://www.pixmania.com
Any other suggestions please?
Thanks

12:56 am - Sunday, October 25, 2009

#204 JB

Hi,

I am looking for a new Digital camera. I have had Canon Powershot A570IS for about 2 years now. I dislike its low light shot qualities and indoor shots. I see a lot of noise in many of my pictures. I really want to avoid them in the next camera I want to buy. I came across TZ7 and I want to know if anyone can tell me how the noise is and how the light and flash effects are.

One thing I noticed in pictures is that Sony’s pictures seemed to show people’s skin colour as natural in flash shots while Canon’s pictures seem artifically bright. How is it in TZ7?

I really hope someone can recommend another alternative if this is not the right one. I am looking in the range of £200-£250. I would really appreciate any help. I don’t want to regret spending so much on a digital camera.

4:59 pm - Monday, October 26, 2009

#205 malex

#204 JB, my advice is go into your local camera shop, and ask nicely, to try a few cameras, taking pictures at the back of the shop or in a back room, where there is low light (the shop owner may even turn off shop lights for you if no other customers in shop), and then look at the results on a monitor in the shop. Most decent camera shops will allow you to do this, as you may be spending a few hundred pounds/dollars in their shop, and they want your custom.
Do not buy on other peoples recommendations, only buy what you have tried and like.

8:02 am - Wednesday, October 28, 2009

#206 JB

Hi Malex, Thanks for the advice. The problem with going to the shop is that I don’t know how they will respond if I go and test the cameras and not buy any. I don’t do that much of shopping that way so I don’t know if they will allow it or not. I don’t want to buy there because the shop near me (Jessops) asks for £299 for Panasonic TZ7 while I can get the same with Warranty for £232 from Amazon.

If I can get some kind of opinion from others, then I might have some idea of what to look for and what to expect when I look for cameras. Hope you understand my position.

12:18 pm - Wednesday, October 28, 2009

#207 malex

#206 JB, I have tried many cameras in Jessops, but as yet never purchased one from them. If they think you may spend £299, they will let you try before you buy. With a few Jessops stores, you may have to come back later to give them a chance to charge up the camera batteries, for some reason, many Jessops stores, let cameras be tried out, but then do not bother to recharge the batteries.
When you have tried and found a camera you want, just say you thank you, I will think about it. Then buy cheapest you can.

5:56 pm - Wednesday, October 28, 2009

#208 Amethyst

Hi there, I bought the TZ7 at the end of August, good camera, no significant problems. However, I’m wanting to get a spare battery-so checked the firmware-my version is 1.1. I know this allows me to use non panasonic batteries but shouldn’t it have had version 1.2 as its such a recent purchase? What difference(apart from the battery choice) does version 1.2 make to the camera?
Has anybody used non-panasonic batteries? and have there been any problems?
The manual does say the battery is protected to recognise the identity-just bluff??
All info appreciated!!

12:48 am - Monday, November 2, 2009

#209 james

After reviewing this product, i think this is a really cool camera.

11:28 am - Monday, November 2, 2009

#210 malex

#208 Amethyst, version 1.2 is just an update to stop use of third party batteries, that Panasonic claim ‘may’ overheat, (Panasonic want to to buy their own batteries)so no urgent reason to update. You do not know how long the camera you purchased was in the store, so that is probably why it still has version 1.1 on it.
Panasonic batteries, and the cheaper copies, have a chip in them that identifies itself to the camera, this is probably what your manual is referring to.
There was a post sometime #187 Peterc, who bought a ccheap battery and said it works fine.
Hope this helps.

6:04 pm - Tuesday, November 3, 2009

#211 Ricky

Wow.  I had been reading a lot of reviews for the Lumix DMC-FZ35 the past few days and was already dead set in buying it.

Then, I come across the ZS3/TZ7.

I found posts #153 and 155 a bit helpful but can anyone help me decide this?  I know the physical differences (TZ7 being a compact camera while the FZ35 nearer to an SLR-sized camera) but in terms of image quality, is there any difference?  Thanks for the help! :)

7:09 am - Wednesday, November 4, 2009

#212 malex

#121 Ricky. It is a straight choice between carrying the camera in a pocket or round your neck.
The lens is the same quality, except with FZ35 you have a longer telephoto. so normal snaps should be about equal, I tried the FZ38(same camera) about a month ago, (just test shots from doorway of camera shop)and could not see much difference from TZ7. I was doubtful about how the FZ would stand up to knocks as it felt a bit too plastic for my liking.

10:09 am - Thursday, November 5, 2009

#213 Jimmy Castro

Has anyone have any problems (while recording when there is a light bulb on) of lines in the video, like a blue line across the screen?????

11:22 pm - Sunday, November 8, 2009

#214 Ricky

Malex, thanks for your advice.  I thought about this for a couple of days and finally decided to get the FZ35.  After a day or two of playing around with it, I’m happy to say that I’m satisfied with my decision. :)

2:06 am - Monday, November 9, 2009

#215 James

I purchased the Panasonic ZS3, when I use the PhotoFun Studio software (came with the camera) to upload the AVCHD files, I get the following :

“Removed from items to be acquired because it contains AVCHD Lite movie in a different TV system.”

Should I use the TZ7 ( I am in a PAL area) or any other solution ?

Thank-you,

James

11:41 am - Monday, November 9, 2009

#216 Dowy

After looking around at the alternatives this looks like a great camera, i am a little worried aboout the lack of manual control mentioned in a lot of reviews. i like to be able to control the apature for depth of field etc…

Does this camera accomadate any manual control at all, such as shutter or apature priority?

Thanks

Dowy

5:10 pm - Tuesday, November 10, 2009

#217 glanglois

If you’re looking for manual controls, please look elsewhere.  I love the camera but it’s just not aimed at that audience.

Even if aperture priority were an option, I think there are only two apertures. 

Others here will probably offer good suggestions for another choice.  Good luck!

8:31 pm - Tuesday, November 10, 2009

#218 Dowy

Thanks for the reply glanglois, i think that about sorts it for me.

Anybody know of another option that is as highly rated but with some basic manual control such as apature priority etc???

10:02 am - Wednesday, November 11, 2009

#219 malex

#213 Jimmy, sounds like you need to try scene mode, as auto may be causing the problem. If it does not work within scene mode, camera may be faulty.
#215 James The ZS3 is the US version so the camera and software is set for NTSC. In setup menu/video out check that camera is set for PAL.

4:24 pm - Wednesday, November 11, 2009

#220 James

Thanks Malex ! for your response however I could not find the setup menu/video out, and did not find it in the manual either..

9:17 am - Thursday, November 12, 2009

#221 malex

#220 James. press ‘Set/Menu’ button, press left button once, down button twice,right button once, up or down button until you get to page 4. If Video Out’ is ‘greyed out’ and you cannoty change it, switch camera to playback mode, this will allow change.

3:54 pm - Thursday, November 12, 2009

#222 James

Malex Thx a lot for your help! I’ll try it (I am currently at work)

5:44 pm - Thursday, November 12, 2009

#223 Al Campbell

I have a TZ3 which I am rather happy with as the most handy and best camera I’ve had since going digital, however, it has no provision for flash other than the puckey built in thing which I mostly keep on forced off, when will Panasonic add a flash plug, or hot shoe, I would jump tomorrow if they did one. With thanks, Al

3:15 pm - Wednesday, November 18, 2009

#224 Ali

I bought a TZ7 yesterday, after a lot of research about which camera would best suit my needs - thanks for all the very useful comments and feedback on the camera, which helped me reach my decision.

A quick question - can anyone recommend a specific type / size of memory card?  I bought a 2GB to start me off, whilst researching more.  I think I read here that it was best to get a Class 6 card - what exactly is that and what’s the benefit, as it’s so much more expensive!  The Jessop’s staff didn’t have a clue what this meant(incidentally I didn’t buy the camera there - too expensive!)

I am thinking of getting an 8GB or maybe a 16GB.  Any brand better than others?  I foresee mainly using the camera for stills, with only occasional use of the movie mode.  I originally thought of getting a DSLR, but opted for the compact due to it’s size, as I will be travelling for a few months.

Any advice welcome…

Ali

3:24 pm - Sunday, November 22, 2009

#225 malex

#224 Ali, the class number on an SD card refers to the write speed. So in laymans terms (exact speed can be seen on internet)a class 2 will record the picture you have taken twice as fast as a standard SD card so a class 4 or class 6 will record 4 and 6 times quicker. The reason you want the fastest you can get (class6 at the moment) if you take a picture, the camera will not take another picture until first one has been recorded on memory card. The faster the picture can be written to the card, the less time you will have to wait until you take your next picture. Unless you take rapid shots, you will not notice this too much, but if you record video, you then see the difference as with class 6 memory, the video is written to card almost instantly, but if you use an ordinary SD card,or even class 2, when you stop filming, the camera will still be writing to the memory card.
Hope this helps.

4:05 pm - Sunday, November 22, 2009

#226 glanglois

I would like to amend malex’s comment:  most cameras have a buffer (storage capability) to temporarily store some images while you keep shooting.  This means that you can, for a varying amount of time, take photos faster than the camera is writing them to the card.

Better cameras generally hold more images;  I think one of mine will store up to about 40 JPEGs before running out of buffer space and slowing down.  I don’t recall the TZ7 specs here.

In terms write speed, it doesn’t pay to buy a card that has a faster speed than the camera.  The write speed to the card is always the slower of the camera’s speed and the card speed. 

The read speed, the download speed to your computer, is a different issue.  Depends on how much of a hurry you’re in.

I would resist the urge to get a card with a whacking great capacity.  Eggs in one basket and all that.  I’d recommend that you do what the pros do:  get a few smaller cards and swap them out well before the one in the camera is full.  You’ve minimized the risk from a failed card, a lost card, an accidentally erased card, a troublesome card reader, etc. 

You don’t want to lose hundreds of images and a bunch of video with one slip.  You really, really don’t. 

I’ve stuck with SanDisk and Lexar.  User review sites seem to show fewer failures than with bargain cards.  You can get much cheaper cards, of course, and it really depends on how valuable your photos are to you.

When I first switched to SD cards, I got one to work with and then watched the sales for good deals.  Too closely, it seems, given the number of cards floating around in my camera bags!  (SanDisk Extreme III at 2 and 4 and 8GB.  The latter because I shoot raw and video on my DSLR.)

7:15 pm - Monday, November 23, 2009

#227 malex

#226 glangois, I was trying to give a basic outline of the need for a decent speed card for Ali, without being technical.
The internal memory is not used as the buffer (the TZ7 internal memory is 40MB)the buffer is a small amout of cache memory as part of the cpu and normally, will not store more than approx the size of two pictures, as it writes to internal or card memory.
When you take a photo, it goes into the buffer and is then written to memory, this uses up cpu capacity, if you use burst mode or video the camera has to write this data to the card as quickly as possible. So if you use a slow (standard) memory card, the processor has to wait until the last picture has been written to the card, to clear space in the buffer, before it can accept more information into the buffer. This can and does slow down the camera. It is the same as using a computer, when it is brand new, everything works quickly, but as you add more programs and try to open several applications at once, it slows down. It is worth buying the fastest card you can, as you will not have read/write delays, plus in the future you are likely to change your camera, but your card will still be fast enough to use with the new camera. Most long time digital camera uses will have old slow low capacity memory cards in the back of the cupboard (I still have 4MB SD cards from the early days of digital camera when the max was 512Mb pixels).
I agree, it is false economy to buy cheap non branded cards, in the past I have had many cheap cards sent to me to retrieve photos from dead cards.

8:18 am - Tuesday, November 24, 2009

#228 Ali

Thanks for the replies… I hadn’t realised just how complicated it was!  And I thought I was buying a camera that wasn’t too complicated, only to find that buying the memory card is more involved than I’d thought!  So… the bottom line I think is… buy a couple of 4GBs, rather than one 8GB… and maybe the class 4 will be sufficient for me, given that I don’t plan on using the movie mode that much.  Or maybe one Class 4 and one Class 6?  Very confusing, but thanks anyway!

Ali

11:36 pm - Wednesday, November 25, 2009

#229 malex

#228 Ali, Hi Ali, two class 4 will be fine, unless there is not much difference in price to class six.
As for capacity, decide what you will use camera for, a 4GB card will hold 1360 (Panasonic figures)best quality still pictures.

5:40 am - Thursday, November 26, 2009

#230 Al Campbell

To expand on my ignored comments at 223, I would like to upgrade from my TZ3, but don’t see all that much advantage in the TZ7. Now if it had a hot shoe that would be a major improvement, allowing off camera and bounce flash lighting. Perhaps if I wait for the TZ8 or 9 something like that may happen?

With thanks, Al

7:44 am - Thursday, November 26, 2009

#231 malex

#230 Al, You are right that there is not much reason to upgrade from TZ3 to TZ7, I think the only difference on TZ7 is larger internal memory, 10megapixel lens and HD video. If you do not need these, it’s not worth upgrading.
As for hot shoe, I doubt if Panasonic will add a hot shoe to their compact cameras, if you really need an external flash, and you are happy with your camera, I would suggest a ‘slave flash’, these fit on top of your digital camera, a sensor covers the built in flash that triggers the external flash, or they can be used with a wireless remote that fits over the built in flash and when the camera flash fires it sends a signal to slave flash (placed on a tripod somewhere)to fire.
The best thing about a slave flash is it will fit almost all digital cameras and even use once cardboard film cameras.
Hope this helps.

8:07 am - Thursday, November 26, 2009

#232 malex

#231 edit, after posting, I realised that I wrote a slave flash ‘fit on top of your digital camera’, this should read ‘on to your digital camera’ most are supplied with a bracket that fits into the cameras tripod fitting and the flash sits next to the camera or away from the camera and when the built in flash fires, the sensor on the slave flash fires. ( the downside of these standard slaves is that if you are in a group of people taking flash photos, another camera may trigger your slave. If you go for the better quality slave flash, as I mentioned in previous post, you get a wireless sensor that fits over the built in flash, so with this set up,another cameras flash will not fire your slave.

8:40 am - Thursday, November 26, 2009

#233 AKJ

Hi
Thank you to everyone for your advice, it makes interesting reading. I’m still confused… I have a DSLR which I love taking pictures of my toddler with. I also have the old Coolpix 7900, which stays in the changing bag,and needs updating. I’ve been looking at the TZ7 and the Fujifilm F70EXR and keep getting mixed reviews. All I want (same as most people) is a reliable camera, with a good battery and good zoom that takes great pictures. Any (and all) advice welcome. I found choosing my DSLR so much easier.

1:35 am - Friday, November 27, 2009

#234 Cesare

#233
Hi, I own since April the TZ7 and last August I bought the Fuji F70EXR because I was looking for a smaller camera. As I used the FujiF100fd I was sure that the final quality of the shots of the new Fuji was the same or better.
Unfortunately was not the case, the FujiF70exr is far, very far from the TZ7 quality so , after one month I sold the F70exr and I stay with my TZ7

8:51 am - Friday, November 27, 2009

#235 malex

I agree with last post, Panasonic v Fuji.
The thing to always consider when buying a camera, is not the number of mega pixels, or size of zoom lens (although important), but the quality of lens, Leica, the brand of lens used by Panasonic is optically superior to a Fuji lens.
So with similar spec cameras, the choice will come down to the lens.

6:32 pm - Friday, November 27, 2009

#236 Yorky

I began reading the comments log this evening as I viewed the TZ7 in Currys earlier today - it was like reading a good book!! I didn’t expect to read every one until the very end!  (you know your stuff Malek!) I sick of buying cheap digital cameras that only have a short lifespan ~ I’ve had three / maybe four now and I’ve decided to invest in a TZ7 (I’ve been without a camera for nearly a year looking at what to buy!!)  . . . . . unless Malek can suggest otherwise - Cheers

8:49 pm - Friday, November 27, 2009

#237 malex

#236 Yorky,I cannot suggest otherwise, having read reviews, this forum, and looked at the camera, if you like what you see, go for it. As you have found out to your cost, buying a cheap camera can be false economy, either you spend a fortune on batteries, the picture quality is no good, or you break your camera and the manufacturer no longer supports or repairs your product, or the repair costs more than camera is worth. With a good brand, Panasonic Cannon, Nikon, repairs and support continue for many years. Only suggestion, it’s that time of year, if you can wait a few weeks until sales start, you may find it cheaper.

11:08 am - Sunday, November 29, 2009

#238 Bob Bradshaw

Can anyone help me I am considering the TZ& how good is the multi shot option against its competitors

9:37 pm - Sunday, November 29, 2009

#239 malex

#238 Bob, the burst mode on the TZ7 is up to 10 pictures a second (12frames per second, is cctv quality video), but this comes down to 7 per second at best quality image, this is about the same as most high end, current model, compact cameras, except some current cannons which can be a lot slower than this.
The TZ7 will take burst mode, up to 100 pictures, as long as the memory card has enough space ans is fast enough.

8:50 am - Monday, November 30, 2009

#240 hilda

Have just got the tz7.can anyone tell me if you can view video you have taken in the camera viewfinder or do you have to download first, or watch on the tele.there is nothing in instructions.Help please

10:54 pm - Monday, November 30, 2009

#241 malex

#240 Hilda, you can view your video on the camera. Put top switch on back of camera to down > play, press ‘left’ or ‘right’ buttons to select picture/video, press ‘up’ button to play video.
It is in the manual somewhere.

5:53 am - Tuesday, December 1, 2009

#242 Hilda

malix,I am very grateful for your reply I can now view video thank you very much Hilda

4:32 pm - Tuesday, December 1, 2009

#243 Emily

Just bought the TZ7 after a long period of indecision between it and the Canon SX200.

So far, I’m disappointed. The picture quality isn’t great, especially in low light. And with no manual control there’s nothing you can do to fix it. The night mode is terrible, automatically selecting high ISOs resulting in ridiculous amounts of noise. I tried to use the “Starry Sky’ mode on the minimum setting of 15seconds and saw much more promising results, although with such a long exposure the image was very overexposed in the bright areas. What would have been wrong with adding more shutter speeds??

I have a battered old 5mp Canon A610 which can take superior night shots as it allows full manual control.

The wide angle lens is great, but produces some strange effects round the edges which I’m yet to get used to.

The battery life is appalling too. I took no more than 100 photos in one evening and it died. My old Canon lasted days, weeks even on it’s 4xAA batteries, and I could always carry around cheap spare AAs in my purse just in case.

Now, after 7 days since delivery I can’t return the thing, and I fear it has been an expensive mistake.

I chose the TZ7 over the SX200 due to the better video mode - mainly the stereo mic, which handles loud bass at music concerts far better than the SX200 (just youtube the cameras at gigs to see).

I miss manual control so much - isn’t there a camera out there with awesome video capability AND manual control??? Am I asking too much??

I’m so stressed!

11:19 pm - Thursday, December 3, 2009

#244 malex

#243 Emily, Not sure what strange effects you are getting round edges. As for battery, it should last longer than this, unless you had camera LCD on permanently during evening. Does camera give good results during normal daylight pictures and at any zoom settings?
If no, I would return camera, under sale of goods act, as camera may be faulty or not fit for purpose, which you can do after 7 day cooling off period.
You can email the company you purchased camera from, and ask for their help, or check your rights online, look under ‘sale of goods act’, or ‘distance selling regulations’, or ask for help on ‘www.moneysupermarket.com’.

8:03 am - Friday, December 4, 2009

#245 Paul Needham

My advice is to forget this camera if you’re at all interested in landscape/countryside photography. Greens are always too dark and inconsistent and invariably produces very fake/unnatural looking photos. I’ll be buying a Canon (or another Casio) next time!

11:24 am - Friday, December 4, 2009

#246 TZ7fan

I have recently purchased a TZ7 in the last 2 weeks and I am very impressed.
The overall quality of the leica lens is amazing, giving crisp standard shots, unbelievable macro close ups and wonderful wide angle sweeps.
The video mode is also very good, giving superb quality on the AVCHD for the tv or JPEG for the computer. The zoom works very well although I admit the focusing takes a second to catch up.
Colours are powerful but well within range.
The abiltity to increase optical zoom upto x21 is mind blowing. I have even played with the digital zoom (I know) with the x85 and with a little tinkering in photoshop - the results are staggering.

Lets not forget this is a compact camera although a top range one and should not really be confused with the manual control flexibilty of say the Lumix G1.
I would recommend this camera to anyone that wants to be confident of getting top quality pictures and video with enough power to push the enthusiast.

2:38 pm - Friday, December 4, 2009

#247 Cesare

I’m always surprised when I read comments so different each other !!  One wrote : excellent camera, near perfect , another wrote : what a big mistake to buy the TZ 7 .
My opinion is that all depends of what we are waiting for . The TZ7 is a pocket camera with many positive points and some negative (i.e. low lights) Probably it should be better , before to buy one camera, ask to ourselves “do I need manual controls ? , do I need a a high quality video ? , do I need to have only one battery for taking 500 shots and hours of video ?
In a word: a wrong or good buy it depends only from us and , as the economical crisis has touched all the world, probably we have to spend more attention before to open our wallet.

4:22 pm - Friday, December 4, 2009

#248 TZ7fan

Cesare,

why is so surprising that peoples expectations differ. One persons treasure is another person failure.

5:04 pm - Friday, December 4, 2009

#249 Cesare

TZ7Fan
Yeah ! I know but let me say that to see a complete different advice about the same camera it sound strange to me. As regards me as I own the Canon G7, FujiF200EXR and the TZ7 (not to speak about my old Casio 750 , 850 , FujiF100fd Fuji F70EXR…..)  I’m a clear exemple that we are never satisfied at 100% of our purchase

5:31 pm - Friday, December 4, 2009

#250 TZ7fan

Ceasare,

Like anything in life, the perfect solution is impossible. We try and tick as many boxes as we can but ultimately we are dissapointed with some aspects of any purchase.
I think in general the TZ7 has had very positive advice and comments but like you say maybe the only real answer is to own 2, 3 or 4 cameras for different solutions.

5:39 pm - Friday, December 4, 2009

#251 Cesare

TZ7Fan. I agree but my personal wish is to have only one camera because when I have another camera in my hands I have some difficulties as regards the completely different controls .It’s not so easy use the TZ7 and one minute after hold and use the Fuji . Another point is that everyone consider most important one thing or another. As regards me I was looking at the new Ricoh CX2 but this camera have not the memo voice that for me is a “must” (consequently the Ricoh is cancelled from my future buy list). Another important device at my eyes is the wireless remote control that I had in my old Canon Eos and now is only in the Samsung W500 (but seems that this camera have a low IQ).
Finally I can say that I’m 80% satisfied of the shots with my TZ7 when 2 weeks ago I spent 10 days travel in Eritrea but… what does it means to be satisfied ?

6:00 pm - Friday, December 4, 2009

#252 Ali

Call me stupid, but I can’t work out something on my new TZ7, only bought a fortnight ago… I’ve been the reading the manual and can’t find instructions to do what I’m after… so maybe someone can help!

When I zoom in on a photo I’ve taken and wish to crop and save it in the new form, how do I do it?!  It was very straightforward on my previous Fuji compact, but I can’t seem to work out how to on this camera.

Replies / advice welcome!

Ali

12:15 pm - Sunday, December 6, 2009

#253 malex

#252 Ali, select picture, press set (settings)- press down (playback)- press right (list)- press down to Trimming - press right - you are now back at your selected picture with word trimming on top. Press set - zoom in and centre to part of picture you want, press set, save new picture.

5:07 pm - Sunday, December 6, 2009

#254 Charlotte

Hi, can anyone help? I really can’t decide whether to go for this TZ7 or the ZX1.
I’m not a huge camera buff so will probably only use it for basic point and shoot, therefore i’m tempted by the smaller ZX1.
However, after reading a few reviews, it definitely seems that the TZ7 gets better reviews.
But is a simple snapper like me going to notice the difference?

10:57 pm - Tuesday, December 8, 2009

#255 malex

#254 Charlotte, If you do not need the extra features of the more expensive TZ7, I would definitely go for the ZX1, It is a smaller version but is as well built as the TZ7, and with enough scene modes to cover most snapshot situations. The things it does not do are HD video, just standard 720p jpeg video, which is not a great loss. Manual settings, that not many people use for everyday picture taking.
On the plus side, it is more compact than the TZ7 and it has a new OIS (anti-shake)system, and of course it is cheaper to buy.

9:19 am - Wednesday, December 9, 2009

#256 Don

Is this the same as the ZX3????

5:11 pm - Tuesday, December 15, 2009

#257 malex

#256Don, No, there have been a few updated models since 3.

4:11 pm - Wednesday, December 16, 2009

#258 Kat

Hello,
I’m looking for advice on how to delete pictures from my camera’s memory card. With my old Sony I would just plug it into my laptop and I could delete one or as many photos off the memory card as I pleased by using the laptop.  With this camera however it keeps telling the files are write protected and I have checked through all the camera setting and on my laptop and cannot find a way to un-write protect them - I’ve even flipped the little switch on the card itself to no avail! I don’t want to just be able to delete one by one or all on the camera, but pick and choose which files to delete when it’s plugged into a computer.  Any advice would be much appreciated!

4:17 pm - Wednesday, December 16, 2009

#259 malex

#258 Kat,When you connect camera to computer, all pictures should be seen in explorer window, and should be possible to delete, if not,check your SD card is unlocked (looking at back of memory card so you can see contacts, switch should be up towards contacts). Have you got a card reader on your computer/Video recorder/TV/Printer? If yes try your card, if it cannot be read, the card is faulty. Clean contacts with a pencil eraser and try again, if still no luck, or you do not have a card reader, take memory card to local boots or camera shop and see if photo printing machine can read card, if not, card damaged. If card can be read by other machine, it may be your computer that has a setting that prevents it reading from camera. Try linking camera to another computer.
One of the above will answer your problem.

4:09 pm - Thursday, December 17, 2009

#260 Chris

Hi, May I know how to set date on picture? I can see date on the pictures in the camera but not on the computer screeen when I upload them into computer.

6:28 am - Friday, December 18, 2009

#261 Daniel

Hello!

I have two things that i don’t like with my tz7,
I have one of the newer models with 1.2 fw
okej,

1: When i zoom in in videomode, i can hear the lens zooming quite well in the videos, is this standard?

2: It is winter, and its darkt almost all the time, i have big problems to take good night or partypictures with is withoute flashlight. is there anything i can do to make better pictures?
i have taken some with the flashligth but i cant get the feeling in the pictures then..

9:41 pm - Sunday, December 20, 2009

#262 Xyanthe Lambert

Hi I have just purchased a Panasonic TZ7 but didn’t realise it was the american version, on the box it says NTSC output only -  does this mean I am not going to be able to use this camera in the UK or playback any film taken?

12:59 am - Wednesday, December 23, 2009

#263 Eleanor

I have a 4yr old Kodack Z700 have taken some nice pictures, but hate the small viewer. I am not too worried about having the video, but have looked at the Panasonic TZ7 loved the viewer and the Zoom. One minute I read a good comment and think it is the one I want,  then I get confused again. Enjoyed reading comments. maybe another amatuer will chat to me.

1:42 am - Thursday, December 24, 2009

#264 malex

#262 Xyanthe, look at my reply number #221 above.

#263 Eleanor, If you have read this post from #1, you will realise that for every thousand people that say the TZ7 is great, you will get another thousand to say it is rubbish. Forums like this, are normally visited by people who have a problem and want to find the answer, or those that just want to put down the product. Most people who buy something and do not have any trouble, do not bother to read forums, so it is always best to ask yourself, for every person that has posted a negative on a forum, how many thousands of people are happy with their product so do not use forums.
Cameras are a personal choice, no honest person can say ‘this is the right camera for you’. If your main reason for upgrade is the zoom and size of LCD viewing screen, there are cheaper cameras with a similar zoom and almost same size LCD. I like my TZ7 and use it more often than any of my other cameras, but that is me, you may use your camera for different things, maybe just holiday snaps or family pics. My main reasons for mostly using my TZ7, is I know I will get good results nearly every time, the battery charges quick, it is a robust camera, I can plug it straight into the TV and watch HD video playback, and because of the HD quality of video, I have taken still images from the video to print out as photographs with good results. Try the camera in a shop before purchase if possible. Hope this helps.

9:33 am - Thursday, December 24, 2009

#265 Cesare

@Eleanor. What Malex wrote is perfect. All depends from what you are waiting for when the camera is in your hands. In my opinion what is the “must” is the memo voice (to add comments to one shot) and the wireless remote control but…this is just a wish list. Le me explain my short digital story:  Before to sell my two analogic Canon bodies and the 5 lens and pass to the digital I decided to try the small digital Casio 4 Mp of my son. Totally automatic, very small lcd screen, no memo voice nor Dinamic Range, nor remote control.  March 2005 I left Italy for Brazil - Fernando de Noronha island with this camera. Just yesterday I had a look to these pictures and…big surprise to be 100% honest the pictures are very very good also printed in 20x30 cm.  What is the conclusion ? Very simple the conclusion is that take pictures is an hobby and when we are hobby envolved the logic is away. We spend money just to satisfy our pleasure forgetting that the most important thing is the person behind the camera . Otherwise how can you explain why somebody spend 150.000 Euro or more to drive with a Ferrari when here in Italy the speed limit in motorway is 130 Km/h ?

10:15 am - Thursday, December 24, 2009

#266 Robert

Hello,

I have just noticed some dead pixels on the lcd screen of my TZ7.  The most annoying is that one appears virtually in the middle of the screen.
Is this something which will be fixed by returning the camera to Panasonic or will I be told that an lcd screen cannot be totally dead pixel free ?

Is it possible to film in full screen mode ?
It seems 16/9 is the only option (not possible to film in 4/3 or 3/2).  Am I mistaken ?

Thank you for your help.

10:10 pm - Thursday, December 24, 2009

#267 malex

#266 Robert.
With an LCD you can try rubbing the screen with a finger GENTLY over the dead pixel. If the dead pixel does not reactivate try a little more pressure. Imagine you are sticking a stamp to an envelope.
If this does not cure it then you have faulty or damaged screen and you will need to check with supplier, how many dead pixels are allowed before it is classed as ‘not fit for purpose’ and they must repair or replace it under warranty.

To change screen mode, turn camera selector knob to normal picture (between iA and MS1), press ‘SET’ button, ‘Aspect Ratio’ is third down on menu.

12:05 pm - Friday, December 25, 2009

#268 Robert

#267 Malex
I have tried rubbing the LCD but it doesn’t seem to make a different.  There are 4 or 5 dead pixels on my screen.  The biggest and the most annoying one is the one in the middle of the screen.  It is in fact the size of a small pin head.  I guess I will need to return the camera to the supplier.

Regarding the Aspect Ratio, my question in fact related to Motion Picture (videos).
Is 16/9 the only ratio that can be used for videos ?

I have firmware 1.2 installed.
In video mode, I hear some kind of background noise even if no sound was recorded (sounds like a taperecorder noise; tzzz - tzzz, etc).
This is disturbing as no sound is supposed to have been recorded (i.e. quiet environment).
Is this something you recognize, can this be fixed in one way or another ?

Many thanks.

8:32 pm - Friday, December 25, 2009

#269 Eleanor

Thank you for your comments Malex and Cesare. I was thinking of doing the shop thing. meantime I am in no hurry. Guess I am more of a point and shoot. so the picture image and zoom of most importance.
Thanks again. Are there any good websites for hints for just a little brighter than dummies.

5:08 am - Saturday, December 26, 2009

#270 malex

#268 Robert, It sounds like you may have a duff camera.
Try to fix lcd screen again, I have given better explanation here:-
1. Turn off your camera.
2. Get yourself a damp cloth, so that you don’t scratch your screen.
3. Apply pressure to the area where the dead pixel is. Do not put pressure anywhere else, as this may make more dead pixels.
4. While applying pressure, turn on your camera.
5. Remove pressure and the dead pixel should be gone. This works as the liquid in the liquid crystal has not spread into each little pixel.

As for noise, early forums mentioned this, but was supposed to have been cured by an update to software version 1.1, I have not upgraded to 1.2, so I do not know if this has reintroduced the noise problem, maybe others can help.
I would take it back to shop for replacement or refund.

When I have recorded video, it is the TV that decides to fit it to 16.9 or 4.3, at a guess I would say it records in 16.9 so that a can be shrunk to 4.3 monitor.

2:53 pm - Saturday, December 26, 2009

#271 Judy

Until October I used my Canon DSLR.  I decided that the weight was too big a problem when travelling and so bought the TZ7 although I also considered the Canon SX200.  I was attracted by the 25mm wide angle of the TZ7 and disliked the Canon’s pop-made up flash.  Personally I go along with the comment made earlier that greens are always too dark and inconsistent and the camera invariably produces very fake/unnatural looking photos. I do not use the flash at all.  If I need it, I don’t take the picture.  I, too, will be buying a Canon next time - hopefully they will have corrected the pop-up flash situation and widened the angle without too big a loss at the telephoto end.

6:42 pm - Monday, December 28, 2009

#272 Cesare

#Judy - May I suggest to have a look at the Group Test in DpReview ? The Canon is in the bottom of the list.

7:17 pm - Monday, December 28, 2009

#273 Judy

Thanks, Cesare.  Which particular test group (e.g. which date)?  I’ll have a look.  With regard to the TZ7, I do not like the colours of the Panasonic, as to me they appear to be unnatural.  That apart, there are certain colours it just doesn’t seem to be able to cope with.  On my last trip I met someone who had also just purchased the TZ7 and had exactly the same problems with it.

10:50 am - Tuesday, December 29, 2009

#274 malex

Regarding some comments on colour output from TZ7, all makes of camera will disappoint some owners with colour problems, but with even free photo software, it is very easy to alter/correct colour to how you want it to appear, so unless very bad results on all photos, I would not change from a camera you like just for this reason.

11:48 am - Tuesday, December 29, 2009

#275 Paul

Most people are going to want useable photos straight from the camera, not potentially spending hours altering 100s of photos in photo software. It’s definitely a big enough issue to warrant a change of camera. It’s not all bad though, it’s a very capable camera but I’ll be needing a Canon or Casio as an addition come summer time!

1:49 pm - Tuesday, December 29, 2009

#276 Judy

To all those who were kind enough to pick up my thread - for me the colours of the Panasonic versus those of the Canon remind me of the two different types of 35mm film in analogue days, i.e. did one go for Kodak or Fuji?  I preferred the gentler tones of Kodak film as opposed to the harsher ones of Fuji.  In my eyes, Canon colours are more similar to Kodak and Panasonic to Fuji.  I am used to Canon, not only because until October I used either my Canon DSLR or Canon Ixus50 which was my pocket camera.  The harshness of colour is one thing - possible a personal one - but the camera can’t cope with quite a number of colours as I found out on my last trip, with almost unacceptable results in some cases.  I hasten to add that in certain conditions the result was very good.  This thread could go on indefinitely - there are bound to be people in both camps, i.e. that of Canon and that of Panasonic.  I wish I were in the one that I am not!  So, I’ll wait and see what Canon come up with by way of their next travel camera - when they get to it.

2:11 pm - Tuesday, December 29, 2009

#277 David

i find the TZ7 great for scenery and outdoor use but poor on indoor images where there is any artificial lighting, fluorescent or incandescant. Images seem very yellow including flesh tones. Even with no artifical lighting, indoor shots don’t seem as rich in clour as they should be. Certainly my casio Exilim takes much more pleasing pics. Any suggestions?

11:21 pm - Tuesday, December 29, 2009

#278 malex

If camera is fairly new (less than 6 months), and you cannot get a decent colour picture from your TZ7, I would return it as faulty, under the ‘sale of goods act’, or ‘distant selling regulations’, as it is not fit for the purpose of taking colour pictures, which is why you purchased it.

10:42 am - Wednesday, December 30, 2009

#279 Arthur B

Battery Packs - recharging from cigarette lighter 12v supply in a vehicle.

I am pretty much sold on buying a Panasonic TZ7 but one remaining doubt is that I am unfamiliar with the battery pack system. Can you purchase rechargers that will work off car cigarette lighter 12v outlets. I will be using the camera and need to recharge a long way from an AC supply. Any advice much appreciated.

12:18 pm - Friday, January 1, 2010

#280 malex

#279 Arthur, yes you can buy car chargers. Search on ebay, they are about £6.

9:17 am - Saturday, January 2, 2010

#281 Kevin

Hey, starting to sense that out of all the comparable cameras of this genre, they all do very similar in low light situations?

if one were choosing between the TZ7, The Casio EXH10 and the FinePix F70EXR, is there any one that would be clearly inferior, or are they all they all similar qualities and based on ones taste?

been researching this forever, haven’t even bought a camera yet :( ...alas, though, it’s come down to these 3…

9:25 am - Saturday, January 2, 2010

#282 malex

#281 Kevin, All three cameras are very similar, so it comes down to how much you want to spend.
I would suggest, make a three column list and enter under each camera, the item it beats the other two cameras at. Then count which camera has the most top features that you want.
Also handle the cameras in a shop, does one feel more plastic than the other? When holding the camera, does your finger naturally cover the flash?
Which has the better LCD screen? Is it easy to alter settings etc.

1:17 pm - Saturday, January 2, 2010

#283 Kevin

Ok, taking your advice i was able to eliminate the Casio.

So, it comes down to the F70 and the ZS3.

I have went over numbers again and again, actually getting some feedback may help.

I will mostly be using this camera to have fun with, parties, hanging out..so low light i suppose is pretty important? also the ability to take fast pictures, and I love burst mode…

Specs aside, if malex, or someone else, is familiar with what i am looking for (i realize my description is vague) and could offer some feedback on what would be the better camera, I would really appreciate it.

12:42 am - Sunday, January 3, 2010

#284 Judy

Kevin, none of the small cameras is good in low light (due to the size of the senor).  For fast pictures you will want at least some manual control, although you can work ‘backwards’ on the TZ7 which is what I do, i.e. set the camera to sports mode in which case it will give me the fastest shutter speed it can under the given circumstances.

10:09 am - Sunday, January 3, 2010

#285 malex

#283 Kevin, I tried the Fuji, but found where they have tried to make it as small as possible, when holding it in a normal position, my fingers tended to cover the flash, and the settings wheel can be moved accidentally by your thumb, and the wheel is too close to the zoom ring, that caused me problems if trying to get settings right very quickly.
The pictures were on a par with the Panasonic for normal daylight snaps, but I found too much noise on low light shots. I found the telephoto better on the TZ7. If I had it for longer, I may have found the right settings to take low light pictures.
It comes down to personal taste.

10:43 am - Sunday, January 3, 2010

#286 seany p

i would like to know if its possible to switch from the movie mode to picture mode while the camera is inside the underwater housing?

4:11 pm - Sunday, January 3, 2010

#287 malex

#286 Seany, Yes, at least with my one I can, and probably most underwater housing, if the back is slightly flexible. As to switch to video mode, you press a button on the back, and not turn a dial as with previous Panasonic models and most other brands of camera.

10:06 am - Monday, January 4, 2010

#288 rayaz

I got the zs3 to replace our trusty TZ4 (which in turn replaced the TZ3).  The better video and audio recording quality, longer zoom and improved high ISO performance were some of the key motivators along with the trust of high quality products as both the TZ3 and TZ4 never failed.

While the camera did perform well in the areas compared to the predecessor, it seems that panasonic has decided to skimp on the build quality.  I had the unfortunate situation that the lcd screen inside cracked for no reason :( even though i had a screen protector fixed.  The outside glass like screen has no damages indicating the crack is a freaky one.  Searching on the web indicated i was not the first get affected by this.  Sadly not everyone seems to be getting replacement units for this issue by Panasonic which is ashame.

So while its a very good camera, panasonic seems to have forgotten what made the lumix tz/zs series such a great travel camera, was that it had superb build quality.

6:01 pm - Tuesday, January 5, 2010

#289 Paul

Based on reviews I’m also pretty sold on the TZ7, I went to Currys today to try it out and generally pretty impressed.  My only criticisms were:
Poor white balance.  The white sign I photographed in the shop came out grey.  I can’t believe that this is the normal performance of the camera but I couldn’t find anyway to adjust it.  Although it could of course be colouration by the LCD screen
Lack of manual control.  I know nothing about photography but one thing I liked doing with my old Canon was using slower shutter speeds (priority) to get that “moving waterfall” or “bright underlit swimming pool” shot.  Does anyone know if I can get similar results from the TZ7 using one of the scene modes?

8:49 pm - Wednesday, January 6, 2010

#290 malex

#289 Paul, This may be from the lighting in the store, I suggest try again at Jessops or other camera shop,(or Currys again if a salesman trusts you) where you can try it near the shop window in natural light, or take picture of something white outside store door.
There are settings for altering shutter speeds and iso settings.

5:15 pm - Friday, January 8, 2010

#291 Judy

Paul, I agree with you that the white balance is not great.  White in natural light always has a blue hue to it (my son-in-law is a photographer and agrees with me) and I am yet to ‘hit’ the right white balance adjustment in other situations.  I’ve had the TZ7 since the beginning of October.

6:12 pm - Friday, January 8, 2010

#292 malex

It is very unlikely to find any digital camera that gives good results every time when set to ‘Auto White Balance’, the TZ7 has six settings that can be used, it just takes trial and error to see which setting is best for your personal taste. But as photos can be manipulated, on a computer, the white balance can be altered, with a click of a button, so it is easier to leave camera set to ‘AWB’, then alter before printing.

10:37 am - Saturday, January 9, 2010

#293 Jo

I really like my new DMC-ZS3. I DID buy a non-Panasonic battery from Radio Shack. They said it would be compatible. It isn’t. When I put it in I was told that the camera wouldn’t work with that battery. I returned it. Panasonic doesn’t even carry the battery for this camera. I have NO Idea how to get a new one. I’m getting good uses of this battery but we are going out of the country so I want another one!!

8:32 pm - Saturday, January 9, 2010

#294 Xyanthe

#293 Jo I just bought a second battery for my Panasonic which is a genuine battery from Amazon. There is a part number\code in the instruction book if not try Ebay

9:11 pm - Saturday, January 9, 2010

#295 Jo

Xyanthe - I can almost guarantee that the Amazon battery won’t work which is why people (if you look elsewhere) downgrade (somehow) the camera to allow 3rd party batteries. We bought one at Radio Shack that was supposed to be exact. The problem is that if your camera was bought after July 2009 a chip was put it. That chip does not allow any battery but Panasonic. The battery at Panasonic said “This is not carried at Panasonic.” That was just plain nuts so I called and the guy found it and said it was just backordered. Sure it cost me $50 but it will work. Just fyi. I have spent hours on this battery issue!

12:43 am - Sunday, January 10, 2010

#296 malex

Jo, below is the link to download version 1.1 so that you can downgrade from v1.2 that prevents 3rd party batteries being used.
As far as I can tell, this is the only difference between v1.1 & 1.2

http://icklefrog.co.uk/shop/page/5

It is a simple process, just follow Panasonic instructions from website fully.

9:43 am - Sunday, January 10, 2010

#297 Xyanthe

295 Jo, I bought a genuine Panasonic battery, I got the code from the instruction manual that came with the camera and had no problems?

9:53 pm - Sunday, January 10, 2010

#298 TZ7fan

This maybe a daft question but do poeople think the quality of the TZ7 is good enough if you were interested in uploading to a stock image site.

I know that some Stock image sites have very strick quality control like viewing the image at 100% say in Photoshop etc.

Thoughts anyone?

2:15 pm - Monday, January 11, 2010

#299 TZ7fan

Sorry forgot to mention, and also what would normally be the difference between a really good quality ‘snapshot’ to a more professional shot?

2:18 pm - Monday, January 11, 2010

#300 malex

#298 Yes the TZ7 will easily give results good enough for stock image libraries.
#299 A good snapshot is a photo taken on the spur of the moment,normally on auto setting, without too much thought about lighting, depth of field etc, but the result turns out at an acceptable, pleasing, quality. Whereas a pro shot, will have been set-up to make sure of as perfect a result as possible, before pressing the shutter release.

9:54 pm - Monday, January 11, 2010

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hd video, 3 inch LCD, compact, 720p, 12 megapixel, beginner, 12x zoom

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