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The Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 was launched in January 2013 and is a mid-range ultra-zoom bridge camera, with 35x optical zoom lens, manual controls, optical image stabilisation and it uses AA batteries. It is available for £149.00.
To make picture taking as easy as possible there is iA (Intelligent Auto), where the camera will change the settings automatically for the detected scene. There are a number of other modes including the option to use full manual controls where you can change both the aperture and shutter speed. You'll also find a number of scene modes and also a panorama mode. You can make your pictures unique by using Creative Control and Creative Retouch where you're able to add a filter with before or after shooting.
Videos are recorded in 720p HD.
- 16.1 megapixel CCD sensor
- 35x optical zoom lens (35mm equiv: 25-875mm)
- Optical image stabilisation
- 3.0 inch 460K LCD screen
- Manual controls
- Creative control with 10 effects
- 720p HD video recording
- ISO 100-6400
- 1cm minimum focusing distance
- Panorama shot
- 1 fps continuous shooting
The flash is popped up by pressing a button on the side of the camera. On top of the camera is a mode dial, zoom rocker and shutter release as well as movie record and on / off buttons. On the rear are exposure, playback, display and delete buttons and a d-pad for cycling through the menus. You also have quick access to exposure compensation, self-timer, flash and macro mode. The exposure button allows you to set the aperture and shutter speed when in manual mode.
The menu system is easy to use - there is big text with a sentence to explain what each option does. To quickly change the picture settings for the mode you're in, the delete button also gives access to the q. menu. From here you can change options such as image size, ISO, white balance and more.
Battery life is rated at an excellent 380 shots according to CIPA test results We took a number of shots to test the camera's responsiveness, from switch on to first photo, shot to shot, focusing speed etc. We take a number of shots and then use the average to ensure accurate and consistent tests, making it easy to compare with other cameras.
|Shutter Response||0.175 secs|
|Wide - Focus / Shutter Response||0.5 secs|
|Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response||1.15 secs|
|Switch on Time to Taking a Photo||1.9 secs|
|Shot to Shot without Flash||3.4 secs|
|Shot to Shot with Flash||6.0 secs|
|Continuous Shooting - Burst||0.9 fps|
|Continuous Shooting - Hi Speed Burst||2.0 fps|
Burst mode records in full resolution, whereas Hi Speed Burst is limited to 3 megapixels.
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Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 Sample Photos
Portrait | 1/80 sec | f/3.5 | 9.9 mm | ISO 100
Landscape | 1/200 sec | f/7.7 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100
Low Light | 0.5 sec | f/3.7 | 12.8 mm | ISO 100
Trees | 1/60 sec | f/3.0 | 4.5 mm | ISO 200
Sample Photos - The LZ30 is capable of well exposed images with decent colour reproduction. When shooting portraits skin tones are pleasant enough with no red-eye when using the flash.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 Lens test images
Wide Angle | 1/200 sec | f/7.7 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100
Some Optical Zoom | 1/250 sec | f/10.4 | 26.5 mm | ISO 100
Full Optical Zoom | 1/800 sec | f/5.9 | 157.5 mm | ISO 100
Macro | 1/20 sec | f/3.0 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100
Lens Performance - Detail is good in the centre of the images, but are softer in the corners. Detail is poor in the shadows and there is purple fringing in contrasting areas of the images. The lens has a minimum focusing distance of just 1cm which allows for a decent macro shot.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 ISO test images
1/15 sec | f/3.7 | 12.8 mm | ISO 100
1/30 sec | f/3.7 | 12.8 mm | ISO 200
1/60 sec | f/3.7 | 12.8 mm | ISO 400
1/125 sec | f/3.7 | 12.8 mm | ISO 800
1/250 sec | f/3.7 | 12.8 mm | ISO 1600
ISO Noise Performance - Noise is low at ISO 100 with small increases at ISO 200 and 400, with images remaining sharp. At ISO 800 images become soft in places with noise causing images to become very soft at ISO 1600 with detail lost in places. You can shoot up to ISO 6400 using high sensitivity mode but the maximum image size possible is just 3 megapixels.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 White-balance test images
AWB preset - incandescent lighitng | 1/25 sec | f/3.1 | 5.4 mm | ISO 100
Incandescent preset - incandescent lighting | 1/25 sec | f/3.1 | 5.4 mm | ISO 100
AWB preset - fluorescent lighting | 1/4 sec | f/3.1 | 5.4 mm | ISO 100
White Balance Performance - The Auto White Balance (AWB) excels under both the incandescent and fluorescent lights. The incandescent preset also performs well, there isn't a fluorescent preset on the LZ30.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 Digital filters
Colour Mode - Standard | 1/6 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 100
Colour Mode - Black And White | 1/6 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 100
Colour Mode - Sepia | 1/6 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 100
Colour Mode - Vivid | 1/6 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 100
Creative Control - Cross Process | 1/25 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 400
Creative Control - Dynamic Monochrome | 1/25 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 400
Creative Control - Expressive | 1/25 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 400
Creative Control - High Dynamic | 1/15 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 400
Creative Control - High Key | 1/15 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 800
Creative Control - Impressive Art | 1/25 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 400
Creative Control - Low Key | 1/80 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 400
Creative Control - One Point Colour | 1/25 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 400
Creative Control - Retro | 1/25 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 400
Creative Control - Sepia | 1/25 sec | f/3.9 | 19.4 mm | ISO 400
Digital Filters - There are a number of colour modes and creative options to help take unique and creative pictures, there are a number of examples above.
Video - Below is a video recorded in 720p HD. Quality is decent, you can't use the optical zoom during recording though.
Value For MoneyThe Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 is available for around £155, making it quite cheap for a camera with this amount of optical zoom. Other options are the Pentax X-5 with 26x zoom at £164.99, Fujfilm FinePix S4800 with 30x zoom at £139.00 and Sony CyberShot H200 with 26x zoom at £147.83. If you have a bigger budget, you can get the Canon PowerShot SX50 at £349.00 and Fujifilm FinePix SL1000 at £269.95 which both have 50x optical zoom, or the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ72 which has 60x optical zoom at £369.00.
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 ProsExcellent value for money
Decent screen resolution
Optical image stabilisation
Excellent battery life
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 ConsNo viewfinder
Focusing is slow
Continuous shooting isn't particularly fast
Panoramas aren't stitched well enough
|VALUE FOR MONEY|
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ30 Specifications
|Max Aperture||f/3 - f/5.9|
|35mm equivalent||25mm - 875mm|
|CCD pixels||16.1Mp (Megapixels)|
|Sensor Size (width)||No Data|
|Sensor Size (height)||No Data|
|Shutter speeds shortest||1/2000sec|
|Shutter speeds longest||15sec|
|ISO sensitivity||100 - 1600|
|Optical Zoom with Video||No Data|
|Box Contents||No Data|