Panasonic Lumix DC-TZ95 (SZ80) Review - Performance

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Panasonic Lumix TZ95 (ZS80) Performance

The performance section is where we look at the image quality performance of the camera. Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.

Speed - 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 <0.05secs
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response 0.1secs
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response  0.15secs
Continuous Shooting - JPEG
(shots before slow down)
9fps (100 shots)

Focus is very rapid, and continuous shooting is also quick, at 9fps. We were able to take over 100 shots before the camera slowed down - impressive! 


Panasonic Lumix DC-TZ95 Sample Photos

Sample Photos - Exposure is reliable, and detail is quite good. Colour reproduction was particularly pleasing, outdoors, in good weather, with bright saturated colours. Indoors there was a tendency for images to have a yellow (warm) tone, which may or may not be to everyone's liking, however you can now use the "AWB Cool" option if you'd prefer more neutral results. Noise is visible, even when shooting at the lowest ISO speeds when viewing images at 100%, and this can reduce detail, however, the effect is quite "film" like. 

Photos with flash show no signs of red-eye, and the camera has used a fairly low ISO speed. Dynamic range is quite good, with the camera avoiding over-exposure where possible. You can use the iDynamic option or HDR option to record an extended dynamic range in images. The HDR shooting mode is found in the menus but isn't available if you're shooting raw, and can result in a softer image, albeit with improved dynamic range. 

Post Focus - You can select the frame you want in camera, and use the touch-screen to choose the focus point, saving the individual frame as a JPEG image. This feature works better on cameras with a larger sensor such as the Panasonic Lumix GX9 that has a shallower depth of field. 4K Photo - shoots at 30fps, you can then select the frame you want in camera later and save the individual frame as a JPEG image.


Panasonic Lumix DC-TZ95 Lens test images

Lens Performance - Images show quite good sharpness, even when using zoom, but at some zoom settings, the right-hand side of the image is soft. The lens is quite resistant to flare, and there is only slight purple fringing visible when shooting images with high levels of contrast. Distortion is taken care of in-camera, with this being automatically corrected in JPEG images. Focus is reliable, and image stabilisation helps keep images steady and sharp when using a lot of optical zoom or when shooting in darker conditions. There's an option to correct for diffraction when using smaller apertures. Macro focus lets you get close to your subject, with it being possible to use the zoom to get even closer. 


Panasonic Lumix DC-TZ95 ISO test images

ISO Noise Performance - The Panasonic Lumix TZ90 features a 20-megapixel sensor. Noise levels are slightly high on the TZ90. Images look best when using lower ISO speeds (under ISO400). At ISO800, images show a loss of colour saturation and detail. This increases at ISO1600, and noise increases further. ISO3200 and above are best avoided. There's barely any difference in noise performance when comparing the TZ95 to the TZ90. If there is a slight improvement in the TZ95 images, then it's quite subtle.

Noise compared to the competition...

Compared to the 20mp Canon Powershot SX740, the Panasonic gives lower noise at ISO800 and above, although colour saturation remains stronger on the Canon. Compared to the 18mp Sony Cyber-shot HX99, the Panasonic gives slightly better results at ISO800 and ISO1600, but it's pretty minimal. Compared to the 16mp Nikon Coolpix A1000, the Nikon gives slightly better noise performance, ignoring the focusing issues we had with the A1000. For the best noise results, the 12mp Panasonic Lumix TZ70 still holds the title for this type of camera with the same size sensor.


Panasonic Lumix DC-TZ95 White-balance test images

White Balance Performance - The Panasonic Lumix TZ95 has new Auto White Balance (AWB) options of "AWB Cool" and "AWB Warm", which can be used with Tungsten lighting, giving improved results, depending on your preferences. The AWB Cool option gives more neutral results, which are good for product shots. AWB and AWB Warm both give warm results under tungsten lighting. AWB gives good results under fluorescent lighting, and there is no fluorescent preset available. AWB gives a warm result under mixed lighting.


Panasonic Lumix DC-TZ95 Digital filters

Digital Filters - There are 22 creative effects available, and we've shown examples of most of these above. There are 24 scene modes. You can adjust the colours, using the colour presets, and there are options to set the contrast, sharpness, noise reduction, and saturation. The camera features an automatic panoramic mode, where you simply press the shutter release button and pan the camera from one side to the other.

In playback, there are retouch options including Clear Retouch, and Beauty Retouch. There's also Image Composition including Light Composition and Sequence Composition. You can create a Motion Picture from Still Pictures including Time Lapse Video, or Stop Motion Video. There's also in-camera raw processing.


Video - The TZ95 records 4K UHD video, at 30 or 25fps. FullHD video can be recorded at 60, 50, 30, 25fps. You can also record high-speed video at 120, 100fps, at 720p resolution. You can also set the camera to give you manual controls for video recording. 

The camera features 5-Axis Hybrid Optical Image Stabilisation - a combination of electronic and optical image stabilisation. This is not available when recording 4K video, with only optical image stabilisation available at this resolution. However, the 5-axis IS helps make FullHD video very stable. Video quality is very good, with great audio quality as well. Video divide is possible in playback.

4K Live Cropping - This lets you record a cropped FullHD video from an area of the 4K frame. So, for example, you could use 30x optical zoom, then use this cropping feature to effectively double the zoom, or you can set the start position and end position and the camera would pan from one area to the finish point. You can adjust the size of the crop.


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Micro USB! How quaint and old fashioned. In 2019 it should be usb c.
At least it isn't a proprietary connector like my TZ60 - but it is still different to my phone and tablet.
What would be really useful in your reviews is if you could compare to a version that users might be upgrading from. Is the picture quality improved from mine? Is it better enough or do I keep using mine till it breaks? Is the battery the same (I have spares)? This has Bluetooth and WiFi but is it actually more usable than the WiFi on mine?

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joshwa Plus
9 905 United Kingdom
30 Apr 2019 3:57PM
Hi "StartedwithaBrownie127"

We have mentioned the TZ90, and TZ70 in the review, however, I think there's got to be a limit to how many previous cameras we can mention (otherwise we would never finish the reviews). However, the ISO speed shots and the white balance test shots are always taken under the same lighting conditions, so you can easily compare results from the different cameras.

The TZ60 and TZ70 use the same battery, but the battery was changed with the TZ80, with this battery still used in the TZ90 and TZ95. Bluetooth makes it easier to transfer images, however the app used is still the same, so there most likely won't be much difference between them. Hope this helps.

alant1 8 13 United Kingdom
1 May 2019 12:21PM
No info on if weatherproof or if it can take GPS from phone. Both important I feel for a travel camera.
Agree with StartedWithABrownie, Micro usb, poor.
joshwa Plus
9 905 United Kingdom
1 May 2019 2:09PM
Hi Alan,

From the review: "Using Wi-Fi you can connect your smartphone to the camera, and with the Panasonic Image App which is available for Android and iOS, you can remotely control and shoot with the camera, transfer images, add geotag GPS location data to shots, record a snap movie as well as create a photo collage."

Unfortunately the camera is not weatherproof, like the other travel zoom cameras mentioned in the review.

Hope this helps
Hi JOsh
Thanks for your comment, and I do appreciate that you cannot cover all versions in comparison. It is just frustrating when considering an upgrade, not being able to easily compare. (I was reading on an android tablet).

@ alant1 My TZ60 has integral GPS tagging, and I am loathe to go back to manually tagging. Reading the manual for the more recent TZ80, ImageApp seems a dreadful way of tagging - it eats your phone's battery. If you are out and about for a day, I would love to know from someone who has actually used it how good it is, how practical it is, and how it impacts on the battery of both devices. I imagine that when the camera is off, it drops the bluetooth, and takes a while to reconnect when switched back on. I can imagine getting half way through a day and realising you haven't turned it on.

Also - note online manual for the Image App
alant1 8 13 United Kingdom
3 May 2019 2:36AM
hi StartedWithABrownie and Joshwa
Sorry I missed the bit in the review about the WiFi.
With respect to GPS tagging I had a (still have) a Sony HX9V with built in GPS but I found the GPS so slow that I could not be sure a shot would have the location tagged. I thought a phone based system whilst entailing more steps would be better.
The GPS is always on in my mobile phone.
I purchased a Panasonic TZ100 and loaded the app on my phone which at the time of purchase was a Sony. All worked flawlessly and the phone battery was not a problem possibly because I used to run the phone powered as my navigation system on my bike.
Unfortunately that phone was stolen forcing me to pick another phone, a Huawei P20Pro.
This phone has a huge battery, so big I don't power it on a full days of navigation but I do have some compatibility issues between the phone and the app which I am yet to feel confident have been solved. I find it interesting that the Panasonic image app has not been tested / approved for Android versions newer than 8.
I hope this compatibility issue can be solved but in critical times when I really want the shot to be GPS tagged I use a 3rd party app called Geotag photos Pro 2. More work but works flawlessly.
My Samsung Note 9 is on Android 9, and the ImageApp works as it has for years.

I've just watched a couple of videos on Youtube. My goodness but using a phone to log location is a pain.

Over Wi-Fi, you have to connect the phone to the camera, sync the time, set the App to geotagging. Then you can close the wifi link to the camera, but you must keep the app running on your phone. That means you will need to find it in the Battery menu and prevent the phone from automatically closing it when not in use.
Once you get back from the day's shoot, you have to copy across the file and sync the times into the images.
(I also found that using time sync lost summer time on my camera, so it became an hour wrong! I hadn't set summer time in the main menu.)

More modern cameras have bluetooth, so it is "easier". Hah! You only need to connect the camera to the phone at the outset, and enable logging. While the camera is ON and the App is running in the background of the phone and the phone has a GPS lock, it maintains the bluetooth link and any photo taken is immediately tagged. It the camera is turned off and on again, which is usually how it works, it takes 40 seconds or more to re-establish that link and lock! By that time you have probably taken your photo and turned the camera off again.

NB I tried inserting the links using the menu, but the forum system is weird. Initially it previewed with one link. I added the second at the end, and preview hid the first link. BUT it made the whole of the text a huge clickable link - of the first link, whilst showing the second. I tried posting and it was the same. I deleted the post, tried again and could not get the first link to show at all as a link.
Having merely pasted the links as text, they show in the preview as links. All that time wasted becasue I tried to do it right!

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