The newly announced Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 will be, in my opinion, a very welcome update to its predecessor the TZ1. Panasonic has done a lot more than just give the TZ1 a resolution upgrade. The new TZ3 still features a 10x optical zoom, but also allows wide angle shooting (28mm equivalent) and brings the 3 inch screen to the show. It also shoots at up to 7.2 megapixels and includes Panasonic’s MEGA O.I.S image stabilization system and Intelligent ISO Control.
The TZ3 has a slightly larger sensor than other cameras in the 7 megapixel class. The larger sensor allows the camera to shoot in a variety of aspect ratios: 4:3, 3:2 or 16:9 and still retain as much image data as possible.
The camera also features the LSI Venus Engine III processor for faster reponse and better image processing. Noise reduction is improved and the processor allows the camera to shoot at up to ISO 1250 in full resolution. Shutter release lag times can be as short as 0.005 seconds and the shutter interval can be as shot as 0.6 seconds. In continuous shooting mode, the TZ3 can take three shots per second at full resolution.
Another great improvement over the TZ1 is that the TZ3 has a built-in lens cover.
The TZ3 is also just a bit smaller than the TZ1 at 4.20 x 2.37 x 1.47 inches.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 will be available in March 2007 for a suggested retail of $349.
- Clipboard Function: Holds and retrieves useful information on a trip – perfect for quick and easy shots of a map or train schedule.
- Dual Image Playback: Displays two images at the same time, one above the other, and offers photographers the chance to compare images.
- Added Modes: Pet and Sunset Modes have been added to make it easier to take beautiful photos in a range of photographic situations.
- Direct Print Mode: Brings immediate printing to users with one turn of the mode dial and quick USB cable and a Pictbridge-compatible printer connection.
- Large-Capacity SDHC memory card compatibility.
- Extended Battery Life and Memory: Results in around 270 shots on a single battery charge and contains 12.7 MB of built-in memory.
- Slide Change Effect Feature: Offers photographers and easier way to view your images, replacing the classic frame-by-frame advance.
- Power LCD Function: Boosts the LCD backlighting by 40 percent, making shooting outdoors and viewing your photos in bright sunshine easy.
- High-Angle Mode: Accessed quickly and easily via a dedicated button, makes the LCD screen extremely easy to view when the camera is held high, such as to shoot over a crowd.
- Wide-Aspect VGA Motion Images: Records standard VGA (640 x 480) motion images at 30 frames per second, and each camera records stunning wide-aspect VGA (848 x 480) motion images at 30 frames per second.
- Travel Date and World Time Setting: Offers the option of setting a trip’s the departure date and displaying images in chronological order, as well as setting the camera’s time and date for up to 74 locations around the world.
- Optional Underwater Case: Available as an add on to maximize Underwater Shooting Mode