on 14 March 2010
Fantastic sharp pics
Fantasatic sharp motion pics in AVCHD LITE
The iA function does all the hard work for you, and it really works.
All the scene modes work and do what they are ment to. (some cameras dont seem to make much difference)
The starry sky mode is brilliant. (must use a tripod though)
Really easy menu to follow.
Battery lasts longer than I thought, some of the reveiws I have read did not give it much of a good rating, but i have had the GPS mode off and not tried it yet.
The Manual mode lets you change Aperture and shutter speed etc, but unless you know what you are doing with them there is not much point.
The 12x optical zoom is very good.
Build quality is excellent.
The software provided does a good job.
Hard to keep your fingers away from the AF light on the front corner.
The AVCHD "LITE" (different to standard AVCHD)video files are not recognised by the older editing programs, I have had to upgrade my "Corel videostudio 12" to corel videostudio pro x3.
Quite annoying that the price will rapidly drop in a few months, so if you can wait,you will save a few quid.
Fantastic bit of kit
You do get a slight clicking sound when you are zooming on video mode, and you can clearly hear it in playback.
When playing back the HD AVCHD movie clip on a large TV screen, you do get slight blocking, but still very good.
When you order a new battery, (which you will) make sure the model number of the battery ends with the letter E, IF NOT IT WILL NOT WORK.
on 28 October 2010
Having spent many weeks doing much research regarding my next camera purchase, I finally settled on the Lumix TZ10 a few weeks ago. I'm very glad that I did.
Firstly, let me start with my requirements. I wanted a camera that first and foremost took quality still photos and HD video. Beyond that, I wanted manual control over shutter speed and exposure for creative photography, plus a wide angle lens. All of this I ideally wanted in a compact camera that would still fit in your pocket.
The Lumix TZ10 ticked all the boxes and after reading exceptionally favourable professional reviews online I took the plunge.
I can now safely say that I am delighted with this camera. The intelligent auto mode generally works well if you don't want to fiddle too much with the other settings, and the dedicated one touch record button enables HD recording instantly.
Most people already know this, but bear in mind that the camera does not ship with an SDHC card or a HDMI mini cable. You will have to purchase both of these separately. I strongly recommend a card with "class 6" speed or later or you will find any HD videos "jerky" on playback.
Image quality is excellent all round (the 16x intelligent zoom also makes great use of the dreaded digital zoom) and surprisingly so for a compact, is still very good in low light. There are an abundance of scene modes to choose from if you wish, plus the ability to select and store your own presets using the mode dial.
You also get the choice of three different aspect ratios, 4:3, 16:9 and 3:2. Taking photos is 16:9 widescreen resolution will of course mean the absence of those annoying black bars down the side when viewing on a widescreen TV!
Remember as well that you can set up face recognition for up to six people. This means the camera will remember their names when they appear in the shot and will give them focus priority.
Regarding the mode dial, it's great to see Panasonic have include the P, A, S, and M modes. These stand for:
Aperture Priority Mode
Shutter Priority Mode
Manual Exposure Mode
Now if you are not familiar with any advanced photography, then I suggest you leave the camera on intelligent auto mode.
However, if you've spent the money then it would be nice to know how to use these modes to your advantage.
I won't go into the detail here, but you can find plenty of tutorials online regarding them and they are easy to understand. Plus it's fun to learn and try, so give them a go! You will open up a whole new world of creative opportunity which will help you utilise this cameras full potential.
HD video is recorded at 720p 30fps and the quality is exceptional. Panasonic have included two stereo microphones and the sound quality is excellent.
However, please be aware of the following:
1) The built in wind cut feature helps cut down wind noise from outside recordings but does not eliminate it completely. Please also note that this option is not available in intelligent auto mode.
2) The zoom motor noise can be heard on playback occasionally. I find that it is generally masked by the ambient noise but if you are recording indoors and use the zoom then you will hear the motor on playback.
3) If you have brought a European model, the maximum amount of recording time you will be permitted in one go is 29m 59s. This is because of tax laws which stipulate that any camera that records longer than this must be sold as a camcorder instead.
All of these minor points do not detract from the excellent video capability overall.
Beyond that, the other headline feature is the inclusion of a GPS receiver. (Global Positioning System)
This automatically records your location into the EXIF data of each photograph. Generally speaking it works well; the camera takes roughly one minute to locate itself and will display the location on screen.
Sometimes it isn't always exactly accurate, it will display a location from it's built in database of 500,000 locations. If you're not happy with the location description, you can always manually overtype it.
It is a handy and useful feature for geotagging photos, but it has an inevitable strain on battery life. For this reason, I generally find that I turn it off; if you intend to heavily use the GPS then purchasing an additional battery is essential.
In summary, I strongly recommend the Lumix TZ10. The still image quality and HD video are both excellent. It is a superb camera loaded with advanced features.
Just remember to factor in the additional accessories required, plus a tripod for creative photography and a decent quality case. The last thing you want to do is damage it.
One final point, Panasonic have released a firmware update to version 1.2. It can be downloaded directly from the Panasonic website and increases performance.
For those of you considering this camera, please be advised that Panasonic have recently announced this model's successor, appropriately called the Lumix TZ20.
Due for commercial sale in March, new features include an 14 megapixel MOS sensor, 16 x optical zoom, touchscreen control, full HD movies and an updated GPS with a database of over 1 million world landmarks.
Professional reviews are yet to be released but the camera looks identical to the TZ10. It'll be slightly more expensive, but if it performs as well as this one then Panasonic will have another compact winner on their hands.
on 10 May 2010
This certainly deserves a 5 star rating and I'm not sure if one of the previous reviewers had a defective unit as I don't recognise the description at all.
I've used DSLRs for over 4 years now and I was dying for a product that I could take with me (on occasions when a DSLR would not work) that approached DSLR levels of image quality. This is undoubtedly it. As a previous reviewer notes, the intelligent auto function is approximately 10 times more effective than the auto options on other digital cameras. Most of the time you really can point and click.
My battery life on medium to average use (say about 150-200 pictures in a day) was about a day and a half. I don't think that's unusual. I think the default setting for GPS is to check location about every 10 minutes or so - if you increase the frequency of checking it will drain the battery. In any event, I didn't find battery life a problem and the GPS feature does add some fun to looking at pictures in Picasa.
I just wanted to mention another feature that's great - the 16:9 picture mode. I know cameras increasingly have this, but it really does let you create amazing desktop wallpapers for your PC.
The AVCHD video quality is good as long as you don't expect it to approach 1080p/full hd video quality (obviously, since its effectively 720p). It isn't shabby for a compact though. AVCHD playback is widely available with Windows 7 (the codec is included) so I wouldn't worry about compatibility.
Very satisfied with my purchase, even though I paid more for it than it currently retails for.
on 25 May 2010
A little known fact is that Panasonic now makes most of Leica's small compact cameras. The quality you get with a genuine Leica, which is extraordinary, is now available in a Panasonic Lumix - but at 50% of the cost. Even so, the asking price of this camera is hardly cheap but I'd say it is worth every penny. The lens is excellent. The build quality excellent. Battery life is good. Photographs can easily be transferred from the industry standard memory stick to a computer. And it is easy to use with controls and a menu system that are ideal. Having owned Sony, Canon and Olympus compact cameras, I think this Lumix is in another league. Ultimately, if picture quality boils down to the lens, and i think it does, then this little camera as good as it gets before you need to buy an SLR.
on 14 February 2011
I bought this product several months ago and was very pleased with its performance, probably one of the best compact cameras available.
Now for the bad news, I am very careful with cameras and have kept it clean and used a camera case. Now suddenly i have noticed that the images have small round blotches which is the effect of dust on the sensor. I am told by Panasonic that dust is not covered under the warranty.
I have had loads of cameras and never experienced these kind of problems with compacts. I now have to pay £50 to get it cleaned
and another £50 presumably in a few more months.
Please Google Panasonic TZ10 dust issue
on 22 March 2010
I bought this camera as an upgrade from a Nikon Coolpix P3 (about 3-4 years old I think).
First impressions were great... build quality is great, 3" screen is excellent and shows the images crystal clear, the zoom is great too and I found the menu very easy to use.
I also took this camera away with me on a recent trip to Chamonix so was able to really put the camera to the test... and this is when I started to notice a few flaws.
Lens flare is a nightmare... obviously being at the top of the mountains and in bright sunglight this was a constant problem - practically every photo taken in direct sunglight had lens flare. I never ever had this problem with my Nikon - i could point it straight at the sun and 99% of images taken had no lens flare at all. So this was really annoying.
GPS drains the battery really really fast... the battery lasted about 3 hours with GPS activated. When the GPS is activated it drains the battery even when the camera is switched off. So a good way around this is I suppose would be to activate the GPS when you need it and then deactivate it again before switching your camera off. I actually didn't bother using the GPS at all in the end as the battery drain really put me off (and this was one of the features I was most excited about)!
Photo in low light isn't very good at all - and I even bought a tripod and used the timer so there was no camera shake at all. The photos looked fine on the camera screen but when uploaded to the PC they were actually quite fuzzy.
And finally, again when taking the pictures in sunlight most of the photos were etiher underexposed or overexposed.
I guess in summary I just found the camera really hit and miss... I'd say only about 30% of the images I took with this camera were good enough to make me go "wow" - the rest of the photos I was really disappointed with. Every time I uploaded the photos to the laptop whilst away, I just truly wished I had my Nikon with me. I just didn't get it... some photos were perfect and crystal clear yet others lacked details and clarity.
I did take most of my photos using the IA mode (Intelligent Auto) so maybe I need to play with the scene settings a bit more and also learn how to use the manual settings for aperture and shutter speed etc.
However, I would like to add that the photos that did make me go "wow" have encouraged me enough to persevere with this camera... but I will be keeping my Nikon with me as a back-up!
on 5 June 2010
I've had this camera for a couple of months now, and every time I get it out and take a few snaps of shoot some HD video I'm constantly amazed. I bought this primarily after seeing just what it's predecessor (TZ7) was capable of, namely filming a U2 concert in Sheffield in 2009. After viewing that video I knew I had to have one.
I'm not going to prattle on about shutter speeds and exposure time because I also bought this for another good reason, namely I don't know anything about shutter speeds or exposure time. The tech packed into this box of tricks is amazing and is capable of making the most ham fisted talent free snapper into something passing for somebody who knows what they are doing. This camera is easy to use and has so far proved good on battery life, which is what most people will really be bothered about (disabling the GPS feature will improve your battery life noticeably).
The downside. Relax there is only one that I've noticed so far. When shooting HD video in quiet environments you can hear the motor powering the zoom. That's it. The pro's are top quality pics and video's with stereo sound. For anybody looking for a top quality all in one type camera I cannot recommend this TZ10 highly enough. Also it's finished in a beautiful matt red finish, which is nice ;o)
on 18 June 2010
I bought this camera beacause I wanted a small one that I could change ISO, shutter speed and aperture. This has helped me get really good pictures, iA also works great. The camera feels really sturdy in your hands .
GPS works just fine, it is fast in spite of what I have read in some reviews.
16x zoom is real, doesn't work like digital zoom in other cameras. This one really has 16x.
I would recommend it to anyone who wanted to learn a little more about photography. It lets you customize everything.
on 21 August 2010
The TZ10 is a very impressive camera. I'd researched various sources for comparisons and this one seemed to be highly rated everywhere - and no wonder. It has every facility you are likely to need, and more besides. The User Guide is not the easiest to understand, because there's so much to learn, but the guide is very precise. It would be useful if Panasonic had provided a 'how to use' document rather than a list of features written by engineers.
I liked the GPS facility. I'd read earlier comments that the GPS receiver can be active even when the camera is switched off and others had suggested this might run down the battery. I didn't find this to be a problem at all. I had the GPS on most of the time and took pictures for two days before the battery required re-charging. During a driving trip to many towns across Europe in a few days I found the GPS very useful in reminding me where each picture was taken. In tourist areas it was even clever enough to identify the nearest landmark from its in-built database. It's a pity that the standard MS Windows XP picture viewer doesn't recognise the extra (GPS) information recorded with each picture, so, after transferring pictures to a PC you have to use the Panasonic software to see the complete set of picture properties.
I found the Intelligent Auto mode by far the most useful setting; occasionally I switched off the automatic flash but otherwise the camera did everything itself.
The pictures are very good indeed. Even long exposures zoomed in, without the flash, came out well-focused, whereas on previous cameras I've found that the slightest movement blurs the picture. And the zoom range is extraordinarily good.
Movies taken in HD (720p) are excellent, with surprisingly good audio recording. I chose to record in Quicktime format because I was unsure if my video editor could handle AVCHD Lite (it could!).
I strongly recommend this camera.
on 18 June 2010
Bought this camera in a hurry for a looming holiday, wanted a compact camera that was easy to operate, fairly robust and took good pictures. Being a bit geeky I was attracted to the idea of the inbuilt GPS to avoid those arguments of where the photo was taken. bought a spare battery as well as was concerned about battery life. Also considered the Olympus tough/mju cameras but decided the image quality wasn't as good as the TZ10 and the TZ10 was robust enough for my purposes
After 6 weeks on the road, with 750+ photos taken I'm still impressed the the picture quality. the Ia function works well, meaning I haven't explored the other modes at all. I have no interest in the movie function, I wanted still picture quality.
in that time theres only been one out of focus/blurred photo. the battery life is fine, you'd only really need the spare if you were going away from the power grid for a while.
its a bit bulkier and heavier than most cameras, it would be nice if it came with a case or bag.. its easy to scratch the finish or screen if you don't have a case.
the one major letdown in my books is the GPS isn't very useful. I was on a road trip and the GPS was rarely accurate, usually it was out by 10..30 minutes, often 2 hours or more. mebbe if your use isn't so frenetic the GPS may be useful, but if you are constantly on the move the GPS doesn't keep up. Its a great idea but not well enough implemented, so save you money and buy the non GPS version.