Conclusion: When looking for a superzoom, don't settle for less. Panasonic's Lumix DMC-TZ3 has a powerful zoom lens with a nice wide viewing angle, too. If you're still not convinced, the Lumix is stylishly compact, takes awesome pictures, and is affordable to boot.
Pros: Nice 28mm wide-angle lens. Very compact. Big 3-inch LCD. Unique modes, like Intelligent ISO mode.
Cons: No true manual features. No RAW options. Can't change amount of flash.
Conclusion: I really liked the TZ1 - as a concept and as a camera to use - and I would have been able to give it a much more wholehearted recommendation had the image quality issues and shutter lag not let it down so badly. The TZ3 is a camera I wanted to like even more; the 28-280mm range is considerably more versatile (you're gaining a lot more at the short end than you're losing at the long end in my opinion), plus it's smaller, faster and even more feature-laden.
Pros: Uniquely versatile compact with 28-280mm equiv. lens, Excellent resolution, surprisingly sharp lens, Unusually versatile aspect ratio options, High quality construction for the price, Little (if any) color fringing, Very low distortion, Good shot-to-shot speed, Reliable white balance with fine tuning, Feels fast and responsive with some important improvements over predecessor, High speed (and accurate) focus; near class-leading performance, Superb, bright, high-resolu...
Cons: Heavy noise reduction - make ISO 400+ usable only for small prints, NR smoothing/smearing of fine detail and texture even at ISO 100 (and fairly strong at ISO 200), Mild vignetting at widest zoom setting / maximum aperture, No manual control of shutter speed or aperture (not a huge issue to most users), Images look a little soft and flat using default settings, Separate sharpness, saturation and contrast controls would have been nice!, Occasional exposure problems and...
Summary: The TZ3 is not only 'one of its kind' when it comes to digital compacts - it also stands alone as the most successful marriage to date of a long focal range and relatively compact dimensions. It feels capable of standing up to a couple of years of use (at least), and, with an uninspiring yet solid build, the Panasonic TZ3 does everything to suggest itself as a capable all-rounder.
Pros: Solid performance, good quality build, extended zoom range, fair price given the level of specification on offer
Cons: Rather uninspiring design, bulkier and weightier than more slimline compacts
Conclusion: Panasonic Lumix TZ3 Traveler Zoom digital camera The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 is already the third camera on line in the Traveler Zoom series. And one must admit that Panasonic made it an ideal combination. Sufficiently compact for carrying with you at all times, equipped with a large optical range and besides that equipped with a real wide angle and the MEGA O.I.S. image stabilizer.
Excerpt: I’m all for mega zoom cameras. With zooms ranging from 10x up to 18x these cameras offer tremendous shooting options for shutterbugs. Want to bring your subject close? The telephoto does it for you. And since they’re much lighter than any D-SLR with a long zoom lens they’re a breeze to carry around. As an added bonus they cost a heck of a lot less. What could be wrong with that?
Excerpt: Physical Views Continue to Features & Controls Lumix DMC-TZ3 Specifications Camera Effective Pixels 7.2 Megapixels Optical Image Stabilizer MEGA O.I.S. (Mode 1/Mode) Optical Zoom 10x CCD (Image Sensor) 1/2.35", 8.50 Total Megapixel CCD Primary Color Filter Extra Optical Zoom 4:3 Aspect Ratio: 12x for 5 Mega, 15x for 3 Mega, 2 Mega, 1 Mega, 0.3 Mega 3:2 Aspect Ratio: 12.6x for 4.5 Mega, 15x for 2.5 Mega 16:9 Aspect Ratio: 13x for 3.5 Mega, 15x for 2 Mega Digital Zoom 4x...
Summary: The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 is without a doubt one of the most flexible compact cameras on the market today – and one which has few if any rivals. It may not be the slimmest compact out there, but manages to pack in a genuine 10x optical zoom lens complete with image stabilisation and a 28mm equivalent wide angle.
Pros: 10x optical zoom with 28mm and OIS., Large 3in screen., Quick access to settings., Excellent build quality.
Cons: Noise becomes a problem above 200 ISO., Little or no manual control., Relatively poor battery life., Ultimate image quality beaten by some compacts.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 Digital Camera Full Review
Digital Camera Review
18 April 2007
Excerpt: The 7.2 megapixel, 10x optical zoom, compact Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 is the successor to the TZ1. Improvements from its predecessor include a bump in resolution, a new imaging processor, the Venus Engine III processor, and Intelligent ISO control. These new features get added to the image stabilization system that exists on every Panasonic camera. The Panasonic TZ3 is a good option for someone looking for a compact ultrazoom camera, with quick performance and a nice...
Excerpt: The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 ($350) is the follow-up to the popular
TZ1, a camera that I enjoyed so much, that I bought one as a gift for my dad.
That camera offered a big 10X zoom, optical image stabilization, super fast
performance, and decent photo quality in a compact
body. It wasn't perfect, but it was definitely the best compact ultra zoom
on the market.
Pros: 10X, 28 - 280 mm lens in a relatively compact body; lens has remarkably little barrel distortion, 28 mm wide-angle available at all three aspect ratios, Good photo quality, even better with a few tweaks, Optical image stabilization, Enormous, high resolution 3-inch LCD display; easy to view outdoors; handy Power LCD and High Angle functions, Robust performance, especially in terms of focus speeds, Not much in the line of redeye, AF-assist lamp; good low light focusing...
Cons: Still too much noise reduction, which smears details once the ISO leaves 100, Colors tend to be dull straight out of the camera (use vivid mode if you agree); some overexposure issues, Needs more manual controls, Useless high sensitivity mode, No zoom in movie mode (only mentioning this because the TZ1 had it), No optical or electronic viewfinder, No USB 2.0 High Speed support, Flimsy door over memory card/battery compartment; plastic tripod mount, Tiny amount of buil...