Customer Review

84 of 88 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great little camera, 18 May 2012
This review is from: Panasonic DMC-TZ30EB-S Compact Camera - Silver (14.1MP, 20x Optical Zoom) 3 inch LCD (Electronics)
I have only recently bought this camera so haven't really got a lot to say about the performance that you can't read in any of the great rave reviews it's been getting. I haven't even read the manual because I'm a bloke.
I'll come clean and say that I've always been a Canon buyer because I love the Canon quality of images and ease of use.
My short list was the TZ30, the Canon SX260HS and the Sony Cybershot HX9V and I agonised over many a review.

I ruled out the Sony which got great reviews last year and better reviews than the HX10 and HX20 funnily enough - simply because the images were said to be over-processed but more fundamentally, it seems the camera couldn't find the GPS satellites and having had a sat-nav with that annoying tendency, I ruled it out.

That left the Canon and the Panasonic to slug it out and regrettably, Canon made that choice for me by only offering 24fps on the HD video whereas the TZ30 has 60fps so it was time to defect.
I bought my TZ30 in white and bought
(1) a Lexar Professional card Lexar 8GB 133x Professional SDHC Card which has the quality and speed to maximise the TZ30s capabilities.
(2) a spare battery Panasonic DMW-BCG10E Lithium-ion Battery Pack - for TZ7/TZ6/TZ8/TZ10/TZ20 which worked straight off and charged quickly.
(3) some incredibly cheap but astonishing value Neewer tripods Neewer 2x Small Bendable Flexible Black table top Tripod for Compact Cameras
(4) a Crumpler Lolly Dolly 95 camera pouch which is a perfect fit for the TZ30 as well as great quality and value Crumpler - Lolly Dolly 95 Camera/Media Pouch - Black/Grey.

The camera is great, the jump in quality and ability from my old Canon A710iS being obvious. It has a reasonably intuitive menu and a dedicated video button (which I didn't like on my Canon SX10iS but here it is much more obvious). So far I am very pleased with the quality of the shots and the video it produces and the 20x zoom is quite amazing and produces a good quality photo even on full zoom where my old Canon used to get very grainy on zoom(though in fairness that had half the pixels and only a 6x zoom).
The touch screen also takes photos on contact which came as a surprise and gave me many fine shots of the ground.
The GPS works very well and overall, it's a very handy size given it's capabilities.

"Downsides" for me - the photo download software is not as good or easy to use as the Canon software whose Zoombrowser EX offers better ways of viewing photos. I download using the Panasonic software and view on the Canon browser (though that can't "see" the Panasonic videos so I have to use both anyway). That said, the later Canon 2010 software was not as good as the earlier 2007 software and what you don't know won't hurt you.
The battery/card cover is flimsier than Canon's offerings but OK and the camera connector is unnecessarily smaller than Canon's more robust plug-in.
The battery can only be charged in the camera and has no separate charger (and you'd risk electrical catastrophe if you bought any of the rubbish ones on ebay) but in practice, the charging is no big deal.
Anyway, great buy, no regrets, shame on Canon for losing a sale based on lazy video specifications (though I should say I could have bought the SX260HS for about £40 cheaper but then I could have paid £100 less for a Panasonic TZ20...and so it goes on...)
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 18 Jun 2012 12:18:05 BDT
J Turner says:
I'm looking at this camera, but thats not the purpose of this comment....I am also a crumplier fan and will be looking at the Lolly Dolly 95. Is there enough room for some spare cards, spare battery in the pouch as finding pictures of the inside is proving difficult!

Thanks

In reply to an earlier post on 8 May 2014 11:08:08 BDT
A readable and amusing review and great accessory tips - thanks!
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