Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera

Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera Review

The Panasonic Lumix ZS20, with its Leica DC lens and 20x optical zoom, boasts a focal range from a wide angle of 24 mm out to a telephoto of 480 mm (at the 35mm equivalent). With the Intelligent Zoom feature turned on (which is basically digital zoom) the focal length is doubled out to 40X. Of course that comes with a price; you will notice some softening in images shot using Intelligent Zoom. But overall with that kind of zoom power, it is easy to draw subjects up close without actually being close. The lens is treated with a Nano Surface Coating resulting in great glass performance and adding to image clarity by minimizing flaring and ghosting that can occur when shooting into a light source.

Panasonic Lumix ZS20

Key Specs for the Panasonic Lumix ZS20
RRP: $349.00
Year of release: 2012
Display size (inches): 3
Image resolution (MP): 14.1
Zoom: Optical: 20x
Video Capture: 1080p HD
Available Colors: Black, Red, Silver, White

Panasonic Lumix ZS20: The Pros

Price: This is a good buy at under $300. With its focal range, it is a great little camera that can be used in most shooting situations. Add to that its touch screen and GPS technology and you have a real winner at this price.

Image Quality: The 14.1 High-Sensitivity CMOS sensor is new developed for this model camera. With a better signal-to-noise ratio than the ZS15, image quality greatly improved. Coupled with its Venus Engine processor, and its Intelligent Noise Reduction, this camera can handle large amounts of data to produce super-fast processing time. Images at a maximum resolution of 4,320 x 3,240 pixels are saved and stored on either the 12MB onboard media or on a Secure Digital (SD) media card, including SDHC and SDXC. The ZS20 also has 23 other resolutions available at aspect ratios of 1:1, 3:2, 4:3, 16:9, and file sizes from 0.2 to 12.5MP.

Touch Screen: With the ZS 20’s Smart Touch 3” 460,000 pixel LCD Rear Screen, you can touch an object on the screen and the camera will lock onto that subject in 0.1 second and continuously track it until you press the shutter button. This feature virtually eliminates the old way of having to center the subject, pressing the shutter button halfway down to lock the focus and exposure, and then recompose by putting the subject off center. So to have continuous tracking via a touch screen LCD is state-of-the-art. This is a very nice feature and one most photographers will often use.

High Speed Burst Shooting: At 10 frames per second at full 14.1 MP resolution, it can fire off 10 shots to capture an action sequence or flighty birds shots. After one second of shooting, the camera will pause to write those shots to the storage media before it can continue shooting. And if you use the Intelligent Burst Mode, the camera will automatically determine the shooting rate based on the subject’s movement.

GPS: With this feature, the ZS20 was made for traveling. From geo-tagging your photos to displaying the location of your images, you will never forget where you took that shot. When the GPS is turned on, it records the name of the country, state, township or city that you are visiting. If you are trying to locate a particular landmark, GPS may help you get there as it has more than 1,000,000 landmark locales in 83 countries/regions that can quickly show you the route.

Full 1080 HD Video: With a 4GB SD media card, you can record up to 30 minutes of video in either MJPEG or MPEG-4 formats complete with stereo sound. Be sure to have the Power Optical Image Stabilizer turned on to nullify any camera movement.

Panasonic Lumix ZS20: The Cons

Short Battery Life: There is only one worth noting. As with most point and shoot cameras, battery life is a common complaint, but tests have verified that you can expect to get around 260 shots per battery charge, which for a point and shoot is good.

Of course if those that complained had the GPS turned on or used the flash a lot, then most likely those were reasons for a reduced number of shots per charge. Of course, the easy solution is to have a spare charged battery on hand. Extra batteries can be purchased for around $20.00 each.

Is The Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Worth Buying?

For the features available on the ZS20 at less than $250 for a Lumix point and shoot camera, you really can’t go wrong with this camera. The Lumix line of cameras, with their Leica lenses, has always been top-notch and this one appears to continue the tradition.

With its light weight at 6.49 ounces and small foot print (4.13 x 2.32 x 1.11”), this camera can fit in a shirt or jean pocket, beach bag or purse, and makes a great travel camera. Optical stabilization ensures your images will be crisp and clear whether shooting stills or video. Camera case colors are available in black, white, silver and red.

Read what current owners have to say about their Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera

By A. (New York City)

This review is from: Panasonic Lumix ZS20 14.1 MP High Sensitivity MOS Digital Camera with 20x Optical Zoom (Black) (Electronics)

I couldn’t decide between these three cameras (and their variants, the Sony HX30 and the Panasonic ZX20) because many of the reviews of each made the cameras sound very similar. So, I went out and bought (from merchants who accepted returns) one of each of these three cameras (I didn’t need WI-FI or GPS, so that’s how I settled on these less expensive variants). And then I took photos and videos in various conditions. I am not a professional photographer, and I didn’t do Imatest or any other specific tests on the images (you can read C/net for that), but this is an experience of a regular person who was taking pictures v … Continue reading the original review and other reviews of the Panasonic Lumix ZS20 Digital Camera

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