Reviews and Problems with Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ35 / DMC-FZ38
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Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ38
20 July 2010
Conclusion: As a super-zoom camera, the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ38 is up there with the best, offering good quality images, adaptability, a creative feature set and excellent video performance, which should provide beginners or intermediates with some excellent results. Advanced photographers may well prefer the more professional DSLR cameras , but the Lumix DMC-FZ38 really does offer an awful lot at a price that just can’t be ignored. Not impressed?
Summary: The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ35 is a Super-Zoom digicam featuring an 18x Leica optical zoom lens with Power O.I.S. image stabilization. This lens has a wide equivalent of 27mm and a telephoto equivalent of 486mm to give you a tremendous amount of versatility. Panasonic's new Power O.I.S. allows you to capture your images shake-free throughout the large zoom range.
Pros: 12.1-Megapixel; 1/2.33" imaging sensor, Leica DC-Vario-Elmarit Lens - 11 elements in 8 groups (3 Aspherical Lenses / 2 ED lenses), 18x optical zoom; 35mm equivalent of 27-486mm, POWER O.I.S. image stabilization, 2.7-inch, 230,000 dot LCD screen, 0.20-inch Color EVF, Stereo Microphone, AVCHD Lite Video Recording, Intelligent Auto shooting mode, ISO 80-1600 (up to 6400 high sensitivity), Backlight Compensation, AF Metering Face AF tracking, Multi (11pt), 1pt HS, 1pt, Sp...
Cons: 12.1-Megapixel; 1/2.33" imaging sensor, Leica DC-Vario-Elmarit Lens - 11 elements in 8 groups (3 Aspherical Lenses / 2 ED lenses), 18x optical zoom; 35mm equivalent of 27-486mm, POWER O.I.S. image stabilization, 2.7-inch, 230,000 dot LCD screen, 0.20-inch Color EVF, Stereo Microphone, AVCHD Lite Video Recording, Intelligent Auto shooting mode, ISO 80-1600 (up to 6400 high sensitivity), Backlight Compensation, AF Metering Face AF tracking, Multi (11pt), 1pt HS, 1pt, Sp...
Excerpt: The Lumix DMC-FZ35 ($399) is the update to Panasonic's popular FZ28 super zoom camera. While both cameras share the same basic design and 18X, 27 - 486 mm Leica lens, the differences are more than skin deep. The biggest changes are an improved image stabilizer, faster autofocus system, and an enhanced movie mode, though there's plenty more.
Summary: The Panasonic Lumix FZ38 is a top-performing superzoom compact at an affordable price point. In fact, for the money, you?d be stretched to find any better. The lens is great, as are the controls, and the overall feature set ? including a wide-ranging 27-486mm zoom ? successfully caters for the beginner right through to more advanced photographer.
Pros: Fully manual controls, POWER O.I.S, 720p movie (AVCHD Lite), lens quality and 18x 27-486mm optical zoom range, among the best current superzoom compacts on the market
Cons: High ISO and low light performance, relatively minor upgrades from previous FZ28 model
Summary: Panasonic’s Lumix DMC-FZ38 / FZ35 may represent a fairly minor upgrade over its predecessor, but given that was one of the best super-zoom cameras of the past year, the new model has a great heritage to build on. So with the FZ38 / FZ35 you get a compact, lightweight super-zoom camera with 12 Megapixel resolution, a flexible 18x optically-stabilised range, HD video recording in the 720p format, support for RAW files, a medium-sized but good-looking 2.7in screen, manual...
Pros: Large 18x range with 27mm wide angle., RAW recording and correction of fringing., 720p HD video & choice of encoding., Compact body with full manual & HDMI.
Cons: Fixed screen & same specification as before., No flash hotshoe., Tendency to use small apertures in automatic., Lens cap blocks barrel upon power-up.
Summary: This camera certainly has the numbers. 12 megapixels. 18X zoom. All for $770, that has to be good, doesn’t it? So why does Panasonic charge $830 for the Lumix LX3 which sports a mere 10 megapixels, a 2.5X zoom and no eye-level viewfinder? And why is that camera so popular that the company cannot make enough to meet demand? Do the words “free” and “lunch” spring to mind?
Pros: The lens is really quite extraordinary, in spite of its absurd specifications. Auto focus is fast, even when the lens is at its longest focal length. And resolution and sharpness are surprisingly good at 486mm – or, put another way, not as bad as expected. Image stabilisation is effective, even at the longer zoom extensions. At modest zoom lengths the lens is outstanding in every way.
Cons: Image noise is perplexing. In default mode, straight from the box, noise reduction is activated and its effect is unpleasant, even at ISO200. When NR is turned off the images are clean and sharp, at least when exposure is spot on. If the picture is slightly underexposed noise is an issue. Consequently we got some of the cleanest photos from the FZ35, but also some surprisingly grainy ones.