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Showing 1-10 of 14 reviews(2 star)show all reviews
567 of 583 people found the following review helpful
on 22 May 2011
Since I bought my first Lumix TZ3 exactly 3 years ago I've became a Lumix fan. Hence, I was very excited when the TZ20 came out on March 2011 as I felt it was the right time to upgrade to this new and promising model. I had high expectations from this model and actually it ticked all boxes but one - Image quality. Acknowledging the speedy startup, fast auto focus, Wide 24mm angle, super zoom and HD video this camera still fails when it comes to Image quality which is the most important feature on a compact camera. Taking pictures in direct sunlight is a joy as photo's are crisp and colours are good (as they should be on a premium compact camera). Any other scenario where ISO is above 100 (be it a cloudy day, evening or indoors) the camera shows excessive noise and image quality is generally terrible. I wouldn't recommend this camera to anyone who actually needs a camera which could provide good outputs in versatile scenarios. I'm currently looking at the Sony HX9 and Nikon S9100 which shares many of the TZ20 features but might perform better in low light.

Update: I have just concluded my testing on the Nikon S9100 and the Sony HX9 and found my match...

The two great features of the Nikon are the optical zoom (18x ) and the special effects. The image stabilizer is useless when using the zoon to its full length (Video capturing). Image quality is slightly better in low light than the Panasonic but still a bit disappointing when one acknowledges that this is Nikon's flagship camera. In all other aspects it was inferior to the Sony and the Panasonic.

The Sony is undoubtedly the winner this time round. Same specs as the TZ20 but superior image quality comparing to the other two. I've took pictures and videos in low light with and without zoom - what a difference. For example, I've took it to the Summer Solstice in Stonehenge this week and was able to produce crisp images at the crack of dawn without using a flash - hats off for Sony. I was also very impressed by the Intelligent Sweep Panorama feature - very useful when trying to capture landscape or big crowds in the landscape (Stonehenge again ...) .Video quality is better than the Panasonic - especially indoors or during night-shot. Battery run time was also very good. The only area where I felt the Panasonic was superior to the Sony was around Macro. Although sharing the same minimal focal length of 24mm, the Panasonic was able to focus on objects a bit closer than the Sony - disappointing but not a showbreaker for me.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 10 September 2011
I just wonder whether there are two versions of this camera, given the disparity in reviews! I find two problems: it is impossible to see what you are focusing on using the screen when it is sunny, so you basically have to guess; and in dim light the images seem very poor. I had been using a more basic canon ixus prior to this and thought this would be an upgrade but I am extremely disappointed with this camera.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 27 March 2012
Takes very good out door pictures, but the quality of indoor photos is poor, and further more have got dust inside the lens, its been in a camera box, so there is quite protected, so am very dissapointed that this has happened, i conducted a quick search on the internet, and behold lots of people have had the same problem, it seems to me inadequate seals in place on the zoom lens, therefore as its being zoomed, the vacuum that is created inside sucks any dust particles in, and this is not covered by the guarantee.
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119 of 134 people found the following review helpful
on 23 March 2011
I have owned this camera now for about a week and it is taking some time to get used to. I compared it heavily to many competitors and a CASIO and Canon were close competitors. I also own an older Sony. My initial thought was the Sony took better pictures, but in looking back, I will have to compare side to side. The sony does better it seems in marginal conditions, but neither do well in dark conditions. The reviews favor the Canon and Casio and my impression is that in image quality they are better. The lens aside, the others just have better software and filtering and noise control.

I wish there was a way to limit the ISO mode on this camera, it seems to run straight up to 1600 and there is no way I'd ever take a photo beyond 400. This camera just doesn't do well at all at high ISO.

In bright light it does do pretty well although any camera should.

The anti-shake on the long zoom is really quite good.

The high speed shots seem really cool and I'll be trying to capture some F1 cars traveling at 180mph from the track's edge. The jury is out.

GPS Mode - I am leaving it on Airplane mode. Its an easy fix to a battery drain. Not sure why this isn't default.
The one thing this camera does have which is really good is actual manual settings. The Casio and Canon competitors just couldn't offer the level of control.

There are a number of special custom modes which I think I am interested in. I look forward to trying them, but setting the camera up to use them is a bit of a bother. In most cameras there are just a couple settings chosen and put on a thumb wheel or something. This let's me choose from a few to assign to the thumbwheel. But then, I have to remember what I chose. Otherwise, I am fumbling for the right setting ahead of a shot - can you say missing the moment? Honestly I think just manual settings are good for me. I have a film SLR, Nikon F6, which is easier to use. Some thought should be given to that.

The touch screen can be used to force the focus, a very nice feature indeed. I have used the DSLR Canon's eye tracking focus and I like this better. I can look at the edges of the shot to ensure my composition and framing are good and still focus on what I want. Just too bad they didn't use the touch screen more. Those many custom modes would be good to put on the touch screen. What did they put there? Zoom controls. For goodness sake why? There is a zoom button that works well.

A really good camera with some amazing flaws, most of which could be eliminated with a software update.

I am going to back to back this with my other camera under extreme conditions just to see how well I can make it work.

Update:
After a week of taking pictures with this camera I have come to one solid conclusion; anyone who thinks this is a good camera has not owned a competitor. The image quality is horrid. It is just poor. I compared the photos under the same conditions to my three year old 7Mpixel camera and the other camera almost always was better. I am aghast. I just feel so bad for having spent so much on this thing. I can see the price dropping as well as people are realizing how bad this camera is.

Second update;
After three weeks, this camera simply cannot (yes that is correct) compare to Canon (now correct) or Sony competition. It has many wonderful features, none of which include taking quality photos.

If a camera full of features and gizmos is what you want, this is the one. If you want a quality photo, look elsewhere.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 8 December 2011
I bought this camera thinking that it would produce top quality photos and to some degree it does. However when using the flash indoors with IA mode, a dark shadow would be visible in the bottom left of the screen, I transferred the pics to my laptop no difference. Basically it rendered the camera useless for indoor shots using the flash under IA mode. It definately is a fault of some kind and hence sending it back and getting a replacement.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 8 June 2012
I am not a professional photographer. Six years ago I bought a Panasonic TZ1 digital camera and it was EXCELLENT. Recently, after using it frequently as my only family camera, the flash and autofocus became unreliable, so wanting to keep with a Panasonic camera to ensure compatibility of accessories, I decided to buy a Panasonic TZ20 earlier this year (February 2012). It proved to be a poor and expensive choice - a typical example of digital inflation: as technology advances you need to press more buttons to do something simple!
Features I regularly used on the TZ1 were Burst (multiple shots, especially when photographing people), various flash options, wide screen format (16:9), large-enough picture size of 3.5 M pixel (to fill my large laptop screen), macro for close-up and video. I had to wait about 2 seconds after switching on before I could use it.
The TZ20 also takes about 2 seconds to start up, so no improvement in speed since 2006. The video quality (especially in less than ideal lighting) is no better than the TZ1 (apart from the MOS sensor avoiding the vertical white-out lines when facing the sun), which is a disappointment considering 6 years of technical advance - I took a series of videos in a well-lit room comparing my old TZ1 with every option I could find (manual and iA) for the same aspect and resolution video with the TZ20 and quality of the TZ20 results looked the same as the video quality of my 6-year old TZ1, and on some settings even worse!
The use of flash and Burst is now HORRENDOUS. With the TZ1, I could switch the flash on just by pressing a single button a number of times, depending on the type of flash use. If I had the Burst on, switching on the flash AUTOMATICALLY disabled the Burst feature. On the TZ20, if I have just been using the Burst function to photograph people and want to use the flash, I now have to press FOUR different buttons typically a total of 20 times, and to remember to do this in the right order!! Switching on the flash DOES NOT automatically override the Burst function. Furthermore, on the TZ1 the Burst function was a separate button that could simply be switched on or off. On the TZ20, the Burst function is just another of the Menu functions, so you have to go into the Menu before you can access the Burst choices, and you need to scroll up or down to access the relevant Menu page.
I have abandoned trying to take some photos because I know that by the time I have pressed the right buttons in the right combination around 20 times (switching the flash on when using the Burst option, or vice versa), the moment will have passed!
The iA (Intelligent Automatic) setting would normally be the setting I would want to use - I am generally happy with "point-and-click". However, the only wide-aspect (16:9) picture size I can use with iA is a staggering 10.5 Mp, yet with other (non-Auto) settings I can use a very acceptable 2 Mp. So, this means I haven't bothered using the iA setting very much (apart from early playing around to see how things worked). As a result I have been at the whim and mercy of the manual settings for every photo. As a result many of my photos so far have been overexposed.
My TZ1 camera had helpful right-pointing arrowheads in the Menu options to make it easy to change the option settings. With the TZ20 there are no arrowheads to take you to the option settings. Instead you have to use up and down buttons and then press another button to select the required option setting, and then cancel to get out of the Menu. In consequence I never know whether I have set an option or not until I get out of the Menu feature and see what comes up on the display screen. Sometimes I have set the option to what I want, and sometimes, I have just cancelled everything and need to start again. The arrowheads of the TZ1 made it much easier to know which setting you were choosing.
I normally wear glasses for close-up work, so can't easily see all the symbols on the display at the back of the camera. As a result I have so far taken many wasted videos, as I have pressed the separate video On button, and then pressed it again to stop the video, only to find that I have now switched it ON, because the camera was still saving previous images when I initially pressed video On. Evidently the electronics has no way of remembering that the video button has been switched on, so that it starts recording video as soon as it completes saving the previously images. This was not a hazard with the TZ1 because you could choose to take either photos OR video, and not both at the same time (a feature of the TZ20).
Six-years of "progress" since buying my TZ1 have now resulted in a camera (TZ20) that refuses to let me delete any photos from the camera memory card while the camera is connected to my laptop to download photos (reading blogs on this problem indicates this is now a regular feature of modern digital cameras). I want to be able to delete the images I want to delete from my camera, when I want to delete them, which is not in the camera using valuable battery power to delete lots of images. My wife has a USB SD card reader for her camera that allows her to delete images directly from the camera memory card. So, I bought a card reader, and my new card reader still refuses to allow me to delete any images from my 16 GB SD card, which is consequently still filling up! Yet another waste of money, as I can delete the images I want to delete only by using my wife's old USB card reader!
This camera is definitely not in my view a "point-and-click" camera, unless you are prepared to forego a 16:9 aspect ratio with a sensible pixel size, and to forego the expected use of flash and Burst (multiple exposure function) in close succession.
This is more a professional's camera, with a huge array of features that people like me are not going to need, and my doctorate degree in science has not given me the memory capacity to remember which buttons to press in which order to change settings correctly every time!
Panasonic Lumix TZ20 Digital Camera - Black (14.1MP MOS, 16x Optical Zoom) 3 inch Touchscreen LCD
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 23 March 2012
Just over a year ago I replaced my Panasonic TZ-10 with a TZ-20 model. I was reasonable happy with the performance of the TZ-10 overall but less than impressed that the Panasonic design allowed dust particles to get 'inside' the lens system and ruin your images!
Fortunately the TZ-10 was still under warranty and the appointed repair facility cleaned the camera and returned it promptly. Sadly the On/Off switch must have been damaged in the rebuild as the camera became extremely difficult to turn off and on after that. This prompted me to upgrade to the DMC-TZ20 and I found this to be a more than worthwhile replacement in all circumstances other than low light conditions. The GPS system, wide screen mode, optical zoom and HD video recording are all great.
What is not so good is the performance in low light conditions and the audio recording. The most disappointing thing about the Panasonic series would have to be the design fault that allows dust particles into the lens system as, my Panasonic DMC-TZ20 ended up with a dust particle inside just like the TZ10. No idea how this can occur but extremely disappointed that Panasonic seem to have an ongoing fault with this series
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 13 November 2011
A word of warning to prospective purchasers. I own a previous model, the Lumix TZ7, but these comments should still apply to the TZ20. The TZ7 is a fabulous camera with excellent wide angle and great picture quality. My reservations concern dust on the sensor, resulting in grey marks on my photos. Extending the lens seems to cause a vacuum inside the body which results in dust being sucked into the camera through any point not absolutely airtight. Owners would be well-advised to keep the camera as clean and dust-free as possible. Most camera-cases harbour dust and may make the problem worse. My camera was purchased in Australia and I now live in France, where Panasonic refuse to service it. I have no alternative but to attempt to open the camera and clean the sensor myself. I'm not impressed with this poor support.
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on 1 July 2011
Dear all,

I'm not in the habit of leaving reviews however I paid £280 for this camera and I expected it to be a great point and shoot camera. I read lots of forums and reviews before making my choice and my experiences have not been as expected. In my experience the GPS is flaky, according to Panasonic customer services it will take some time to update where it is, probably around 15 minutes, so when you switch it on to take pictures it assumes it hasn't changed location from its last update. The picture quality in my opinion in low light is very poor,I've had better from a 5 megapixel Nokia camera phone. Its set to its clever AI mode which makes no difference pictures are often grainy and wholly unacceptable. The colours seem odd as well. It only seems to take a reasonable picture in perfect lighting conditions. The quality has been poor enough for me to contact Panasonic and send in sample pictures and five days later no response. I don't doubt there's lots of great pocket cameras out there this isn't one of them. It's overpriced and not very good. If like me you read reviews to try and make a good choice please take mine as a word of warning and buy something else.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 29 December 2011
Having done my research for the a good digital camera, and not wanting to buy a DSLR, this looked like a good product. Whilst technically it maybe very good, the two complaints I have are:
1) The shutter started sticking after only 2 months (and it has not even been used that much). It is now with the repairers and whilst still under warranty not something that I would expect to happen with this priced camera
2) apart from at night the flash is so string that you will inevitability switch it off. Again why have a auto flash if it over exposes most of the time.

Would not buy Panasonic again.
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