I've used quite a few of the TZ models and other maker's compact zooms over the years. So was quite keen to try this new TZ mostly because it adds something all the others lacked, a viewfinder (electronic)
Now it's here it is welcomed, there were times just using a rear LCD in harsh light wasn't ideal.
My quick fire pros and cons list
+ First TZ with a viewfinder built in, it's a 0.20" 200,000 dot EVF. Nothing amazing either size or resolution wise, but useful to have in tricky lighting
+ Decent quality 30x 24-720mm (equivalent 35mm) zoom lens. Lens speed is f3.3- f6.4 which is ok for normal use, take note for low light shooting though
+ Build quality is respectable feels well put together
+ Good image quality from the camera which uses a 1/2.3 sensor. Also you can shoot raw too (don't expect big sensor IQ though)
+ Built-in Wi-Fi & GPS, GPS locking was quite quick and I had no problems in actual field use
+ Does a fairly decent macro/close up min focus of 3cm
+ Manual controls including Program, Aperture/Shutter priority and lots of scene modes as well as custom settings that can be stored on the main control dial
+ Good performance from the AF which has an assist light which comes on in low light, AF is generally quite fast and locks on reliably, video AF holds focus well even when zooming in and out which is nice to see, video quality is pretty good too
+ OIS lens stabilisation works well around 3 stops or so maybe a touch more
+ Metering performed well in a variety of situations from low light to harsh contrasty lighting, quite consistent and predictable
+ Long exposures possible up to 15 or 30 seconds (with the Starry Sky mode) handy for night scene tripod shooters
+ Has a focus peaking mode (for manual focus) and focus magnify using the ring at the base of the lens, but this is quite slow responding to turns (focus by wire) Focus ring can also be customised for other functions
+ Easy to use, logical control layout, and menu system
+ Has some faster burst modes for action shooting, I don't really use these much on cameras like the TZ60 up to 10fps you can get maybe useful for catching kids playing. Raw does slow the camera and burst rate down though (worth picking up a decent speed card)
+ LCD is sharp and clear even in most lighting conditions, nice 920K dot resolution
- Live view finder (EVF) has no sensor so you have to switch between the LCD and EVF with a button (bit of a shame)
- Lens is quite good across the range but drops off a touch at the top telephoto level (still quite usable though) Corners are ok but could be a bit sharper at full wide angle
- Battery life is around 250 shots real world sometimes a tad more, GPS will drain the battery more, worth getting a spare for holiday/travelling
- Low light performance is average for a compact with a non fast lens and this sensor size, above ISO 1600 too much quality is lost, pretty much in line with offerings from various makers here. You can get ok smaller prints at ISO 1600 but stick to 800 or below, ideally ISO 400 max
- Small built in memory (12MB), not really a big deal as cards are so cheap now, but as memory is so inexpensive you wonder why makers don't put a bit more in camera (say 256MB) to get you out of trouble in a pinch
- No touchscreen controls, doesn't bother me much but there are times "touch to focus" or quick settings via the LCD could be useful. With no sensor for the EVF I suspect that's one reason
- I felt the grip was ok but the TZ 40 had a larger one (personal taste on this)
- Dynamic range pretty good for a compact, but not up to the Fuji models I've tried
- Not the best place for a built in flash, you have to be careful you don't cover it with your fingers
- You have to charge the battery in camera via USB, not a huge deal if you travel but would be nice to have a wall charger AND the choice to charge in camera
As per usual with Panasonic you get a ton of scene modes and filters to play with, quite a bit of customisation of the camera too.
Compared to the TZ40 you lose the touch screen controls, but gain a 30x zoom v a 20x zoom on that model. You also get raw and the built in EVF on the TZ60. It's a shame the EVF isn't a bit better usable but could be bigger and higher resolution.
It's a toss up what you prefer, I'm glad Panasonic added the EVF it's a step in the right direction, even though you have to use the button to switch between the screen, it's not that big or high res it's usable with decent refresh rates.
The TZ range has been around for a while and I've used most of the models over the years, this is a decent step up in some respects, but as with all smaller sensor cameras there is no comparison between a small sensor with 18mp and a much bigger sensor, as long as you trim your expectations you'll be happy enough with the camera.
Hard to say if TZ40 users should update (in some ways this is an update, in others a step back ie non touch), if you're happy enough with the 20x zoom (which is probably good enough for most) then stick with that model, if you're looking for a new superzoom to take on holiday the Panasonic will serve you well as a travel camera.
Image quality is quite good, but not outstanding. Smearing is evident once you hit ISO 400, not enough to ruin your prints but with the mottled watercolour effect quite obvious (raw can help here). Some CA is present in harsh contrast at the edges, not unusual by any means. Sharpness falls off a bit at the longer end of the zoom. As long as you don't pixel peep and keep the ISO levels down where possible (OIS works very well) you should be happy with this.
Overall 4 stars from me, 5 indicates near perfection and few cameras are worthy of that. The TZ-60 packs quite a lot into a compact package, with some compromises, but the majority of users will be quite happy with the camera. A nice camera and worth checking out, but do look around at alternatives esp if you don't need such a big zoom range, some of the premium compacts with faster lenses and larger sensors ultimately do have better image quality.