Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8 Review

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

Features & Controls

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

The all-glass aspherical Lumix DC VARIO ELMARIT 5x zoom lens is equivalent to a 32-160mm zoom on a 35mm camera. It has a F3.3 to F5.9 maximum aperture. No lens cap is needed, when the camera is powered down the lens retracts into the body and a built-in shutter protects it.

The 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 two modes of operation:

    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.

The TTL contrast-detect auto focus system has a working range of:
Normal: 1.64 feet (50cm) Wide, 3.28 feet (100cm) Telephoto - Infinity
Macro: 0.16 feet (5 cm) Wide, 3.28 (100cm) telephoto - Infinity

Users may choose from selectable AF settings. In addition to the 9-point and 1-point normal speed, the LZ8 can be set to 3-point high-speed, 1-point high-speed, Face or Spot autofocus. The AF system is aided in low light focusing thanks to the inclusion of an AF-assist lamp.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

The built-in speedlight features Auto, Auto/Red-eye reduction, Slow-sync/Red-eye, Forced On (Fill) and Forced Off modes. The working flash range using ISO Auto is: Approx. 1.97 - 20.7 feet (0.6 - 6.3m) Wide, 0.98 - 10.2 feet (0.3 - 3.1m) Tele.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

The 2.5-inch color LCD has 230,000 pixels of resolution and it's used for framing, reviewing stored images and navigating the menu system. This is a high-quality "Intelligent" LCD, which detects the lighting condition and adjusts brightness accordingly. There is no optical viewfinder.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8 Controls on the back:

At the top is the Record/Play mode switch. Next is the Exposure button, which sets the Aperture and shutter speed values when using specific modes. The 4-way selector in Record mode toggles the flash mode when pressed "Right." When pressed "Up" it adjusts exposure compensation. Press "Left" to activate the Self-timer and press "Down" to enable Macro mode. 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 DISPLAY button toggles the amount of overlay information is shown on the LCD. The Q.MENU button gives you access to the shortcut menu in record mode, and acts as the image delete option in playback mode.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

Controls on the top include the combination shutter release and zoom control ring. The zoom ring is used in playback to enlarge the image or display an index page. The button to the right of the shutter release is the E.Zoom (Easy Zoom) button. Below that is the Power on/off switch.

The Mode Dial has positions for:

    Movie - Capture motion JPEG with audio, length is limited only to available memory

    SCN - Scene: Settable for Portrait, Scenery, Sports, Panning, Night Portrait, Self-Portrait, Food, Party, Candle Light, Fireworks, Starry Sky, Beach, Aerial Photo, Snow, High Sensitivity, Baby 1&2, Sunset, Pet, Hi-Speed Burst

    Night Portrait - Night Portrait Advanced Scene mode

    Sports - Sports Advanced Scene mode

    Landscape - Landscape Advanced Scene mode

    Portrait - Portrait Advanced Scene mode

    Intelligent Auto - Uses five distinct technologies to provide beginners with great photos

    P - Standard Program AE mode

    A/S/M - Aperture priority, Shutter Priority, Manual mode

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

The A/V Out port sends the audio and video to a television set, the video format is user selectable for NTSC or PAL standard. This is also the USB 2.0 (full-speed) data I/O port, it is Mass Storage compliant and also supports the PictBridge direct-print standard.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

Still images and movie clips are stored on 27MB of internal memory or optional removable SD/SDHC/MMC type flash memory cards.

Approximate Storage Capacities

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

The DMC-LZ8 can be powered by two AA alkaline or two rechargeable nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) batteries. Panasonic claims the included Alkaline batteries will allow you to take up to 180 photos, while Oxyride batteries will let you take about 270 photos and nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) batteries allow up to 470 photos (using CIPA standard testing).

Approximate Battery Life

Panasonic Lumix DMC-LZ8

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