Lumix DMC-FZ28

Lumix DMC-FZ28

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28 Review

By Movable Type Admin

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

Features & Controls

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

The FZ28 is the second Panasonic model we have seen to feature such a versatile zoom rage, with its all-glass aspherical Leica DC-VARIO ELMARIT 18x zoom lens covering an equivalent range of 27-486mm zoom on a 35mm camera. It has a maximum aperture of F2.8-F4.4 and is adjustable in 1/3EV steps to F8. The lens is constructed of 11 elements in 8 Groups with 3 Aspherical Lenses and 4 Aspherical surfaces. Panasonic includes a handy lens cap to keep the lens clean and protected.

The FZ28's MEGA Optical Image Stabilizer has a built-in gyrosensor that detects any hand movement and relays a signal to a tiny microcomputer inside the camera, which instantly calculates the compensation needed. A linear motor then shifts the Optical Image Stabilizer lens as necessary to guide incoming light from the image straight to the CCD. The MEGA OIS has four modes of operation:

  • Auto - The Camera determines when the stabilizer is needed.
  • Mode 1 - The stabilizer operates continuously and assists during composition.
  • Mode 2 - The stabilizer is only activated when the shutter release is pressed. There is a greater stabilizing effect in this mode.
  • Off - Stabilizer is not in operation.

To minimize the occurrence of flares or ghosting when shooting outdoors or in any bright environment you can attach the supplied lens shade. It only takes a moment to snap it into place.

Panasonic offers optional 1.7x telephoto (DMW-LT55) and DMW-LC55 Close-up adapter lenses for the FZ28. The Panasonic DMW-LA3 Conversion Lens Adapter is required when using auxiliary lenses. There's also a DMW-LND46 ND filter and DMW-LMC46 MC protector.

The TTL contrast-detect auto focus system in Normal has a focus range of:

  • Wide 11.8 in. (30cm) / Tele 6.6 ft. (200cm) - Infinity
  • Macro/Intelligent Auto/Manul mode focus range is: Wide 0.39 in. (1cm) / Tele 6.6 ft. (200cm) - Infinity.
  • Tele Macro range is: Approx 12 - 18x, 3.3 ft. (100cm) - Infinity.

Users may choose from selectable AF settings. In addition to the Multi-point (11 points), 1- point High speed, 1-point normal speed, and Spot autofocus, the DMC-FZ28 offers Face Detect and AF tracking modes. These setting help ensure users capture even better portraits and image of fast moving subjects. In low-light conditions, the AF system is aided by a focus-assist illuminator.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

The pop-up speedlight features Auto, Auto/Red-eye Reduction, Forced On, Slow Sync./Red-eye Reduction, Forced Off, Flash Synchro (1st/2nd curtain) modes. The flash output is adjustable from -2 to +2 in 1/3EV steps. The approx. flash range at ISO auto is : 0.98 ft. (0.3m) - 27.9 ft. (8.5m) Wide / 3.3 ft. (1.0m) - 17.7 ft. (5.4m) Telephoto.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

The eyelevel viewfinder is a 0.2" (201K Pixel) color LCD monitor with a magnifying eyepiece. It has dioptric adjustment and can be used with eyeglasses. This electronic viewfinder (EVF) gives you true TTL (through the lens) viewing (100% frame coverage) and overlays important camera and exposure data on top of the live display. It can also be used to review images and access the menu system in bright lighting where it's difficult to see the LCD monitor.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

The large 2.7-inch color LCD monitor is a transreflective type with 230,000 pixels. If offers a field of view of approx. 100% and can be used as a viewfinder, for image review or accessing the menus.

Controls on the back: The Flash button pops-up the built-in flash. The EVF/LCD button selects the active display. You can also see the built in speaker to the left of the EVF button. The AF/AE Lock button allows you to lock Auto Focus and Auto Exposure. Next is the Play/Record Mode switch. On past models, the Play option was on the Mode dial. The Joystick controller is used to change shutter speeds, aperture values and to make manual focus adjustments. Pressing it inward brings up the Q.MENU or shortcut menu. The DISPLAY button cycles the LCD display modes. The 4-way selector in Record mode toggles the flash mode when pressed "Right." When pressed "Up" it toggles exposure or flash compensation, AE Bracketing or Flash compensation. Press "Left" to activate the Self-timer and pressing "Down" toggles the Fn, which can be set to control varios functions (Quick Review, ISO, Meteing, AF mode, etc.). In Playback mode the 4-way selector is used to select images and of course in both record and play modes it is used to navigate the menu screens. The MENU/SET button calls up and dismisses the menu system and accepts selections. The Drive Mode/Trashcan button selects single frame or continuous recording mode or in playback or quick review it is used to delete images.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

Controls on top: The shutter release button with the zoom lens controls around it, in playback mode they serve as the Index and Magnify options. Next is the AF Macro/Focus button, which enables and disables Macro focus mode. The AF/MF button selects Auto or Manual focus mode. Lastly we have the Power Off/On switch.

The Mode Dial has positions for:

    iA - Simple fully automatic Intelligent Auto mode

    P - Program AE mode with Program-Shift

    A - Aperture priority mode, F2.8 to F8 in 1/3EV steps

    S - Shutter-speed priority mode, 1/2000 to 8 secs. (60 secs in Manual)

    M - Manual mode

    C1 - Create a mode that is "custom" to your shooting style

    C2 - Same as above, but you have access to three settings (that's 4 custom modes in total)

    Movie - Capture motion JPEG with audio, length is limited to 2GB

    SCN - Scene Modes: Party, Candle Light, Baby1, Baby2, Pet, Sunset, High sensitivity, Hi-Speed Burst, Flash Burst, Panning, Starry Sky, Fireworks, Beach, Snow, Aerial photo, Pin Hole, Film Grain

    Night Portrait - Advanced scene mode, choose Night Portrait, Night Scenery, Illuminations, Creative

    Sports mode - Advanced scene mode, choose Normal, Outdoor, Indoor, Creative

    Scenery mode - Advanced scene mode, choose Normal, Nature, Architecture, Creative

    Portrait mode - Advanced scene mode, choose Normal, Soft Skin, Outdoor, Indoor, Creative

    Macro mode - Advanced scene mode, choose Flower, Food, Objects, Creative

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

I/O ports:
The Digital/AV Out port handles both the audio/video output to a television set (NTSC or PAL standard) as well as the USB 2.0 (High-speed) data transfer to your PC. It is Mass Storage compliant and also supports the PictBridge direct-print standard.

An optional AC power adapter or external battery can be connected to the DC IN 8.4V port.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

On the opposite side of the camera is a Component A/V output, perfect for connecting the camera to your HDTV.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

Still images, movie clips and audio files are stored on the camera's approx. 50MB of internal memory or on a removable SD/SDHC/MMC memory cards. Shown here with a fast and spacious OCZ Class 6 4GB SDHC card.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ28

Power is supplied by a Panasonic 7.2v 710mAh Li-ion battery pack. Fully charged the battery has power for approx. 460 pictures whether using the LCD or electronic viewfinder. Continuous playback time was not specified.

The battery charger can replenish a fully depleted pack in 120 minutes or less. The battery pack is charged out of the camera, so you can be charging one and while using another. We highly recommend you purchase a second battery pack and keep it charged and ready at all times, especially if you are planing to go on vacation.

Continue on to the
Recording Modes & Menus

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