Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3 Review

Click for our main menu

Review posted 6/12/2007

Introduction & Physical Views

Click to take a QuickTime VR tour of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3
Click on the Lumix LS70 to take a 360° tour

The 7.2 Megapixel Lumix DMC-TZ3 is the latest entry to Panasonic's popular TZ family, and features a 7.2-megapixel CCD imager, 28mm wide view LEICA DC VARIO-ELMAR lens, Intelligent Image Stabilization, with the industry's most advanced countermeasures against blurring, and a 3.0-inch LCD, all packaged in a compact, stylish, and durable stainless steel body.

Panasonic's multi-tasking Intelligent Image Stabilization system makes it easy to capture beautiful photos every time. MEGA O.I.S., which is a standard feature across the entire line of Lumix cameras, compensates for the effects of hand-shake, making it possible to capture clear, crisp photos indoors, at night, or when taking macro close-ups. However, MEGA O.I.S. cannot suppress the motion blur caused by a subject moving as the photo is being snapped. In this case, the camera's Venus Engine III image-processing engine - detects whether the subject is moving and, as necessary, raises the ISO setting and shutter speed according to how fast the subject is moving and the light conditions.

Other features of the DMC-TZ3 that improve usability and convenience include:

  • 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.

  • Built in Lens Cap: Offers added lens protection and convenience.

  • 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.

The DMC-TZ3 also includes the Panasonic Venus Engine III, their most advanced image-processing engine to date. The engine helps to improve noise reduction and can record at a sensitivity setting as high as ISO 1250 with full resolution. With its multi-task image-processing capability, the Venus Engine III also boasts outstanding response time, shutter release time lag as short as 0.006 second, and shutter interval as short as 0.5 seconds. This fast response makes it easy to capture sudden, spur-of-the-moment shots. Additionally in burst shooting mode, the DMC-TZ3 can fire off three shots per second at full resolution and allows unlimited consecutive shooting until the SDHC/SD memory card is full.

Major DMC-TZ3 Features:

  • 7.2-megapixel effective CCD for images up to 3072 x 2304 pixels
  • Leica DC Vario-Elmarit Lens 10x optical zoom, equivalent to 28-280mm on a 35mm camera
  • MEGA O.I.S. (Optical image stabilization) system
  • High Sensitivity mode, up to ISO 3200
  • 9-point AF system with focus-assist lamp
  • 3.0-inch TFT color monitor with (230k pixels)
  • Simple, Program AE, Macro, Intelligent ISO + 21 scene modes
  • Burst capture mode
  • 640x480/320x240 (4:3) or 848 x 480 (16:9) QuickTime movies, 30fps or 10fps with audio
  • Shutter speeds from 1/2000 to 8 seconds
  • Built-in flash with auto, fill, slow synchro and red-eye reduction modes
  • TTL Auto White Balance, 5 presets and custom set
  • 12.7MB of internal memory plus SD/SDHC/MMC memory card slot
  • Optional Underwater Case
  • Plug-n-Play USB, Mass Storage compliant
  • PictBridge Direct-Print compatible
  • Powered by a 3.7v 1000mAh Lithium-ion Battery Pack

The Lumix DMC-TZ3 is available now with a suggested retail price of US$349.95.

Physical Views

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3

Continue to
Features & Controls

Lumix DMC-TZ3 Specifications

Camera Effective Pixels 7.2 Megapixels
Optical Image Stabilizer MEGA O.I.S. (Mode 1/Mode)
Optical Zoom 10x
CCD (Image Sensor) 1/2.35",
8.50 Total Megapixel CCD
Primary Color Filter
Extra Optical Zoom 4:3 Aspect Ratio:
12x for 5 Mega, 15x for 3 Mega, 2 Mega, 1 Mega, 0.3 Mega
3:2 Aspect Ratio:
12.6x for 4.5 Mega, 15x for 2.5 Mega
16:9 Aspect Ratio:
13x for 3.5 Mega, 15x for 2 Mega
Digital Zoom 4x
(Max. 40x combined with Optical Zoom without Extended Optical Zoom)
(Max. 60x combined with Extended Optical Zoom)
Focal Length f=4.6-46mm (35mm equiv: 28-280mm)
Leica DC Vario-Elmarit Lens 11 Elements in 9 Groups
(3 Aspherical Lenses/4 Aspherical Surfaces, 1 ED Lens)
Aperture Range Wide: F3.3/F8 (2 steps)
Tele: F4.9 - F11 (2 steps)
Focusing Area Normal: Wide 50cm/ Tele 200cm - infinity
Macro, Simple, Intelligent ISO, Motion Image, Clipboard: Wide 5cm/Tele (except for Tele end) 200cm - infinity
Tele Macro (at Tele end): 100cm infinity
AF Metering 1 point
1 point high speed
3 points high speed
9 points
Focus Auto Focus System
Normal/Macro (Dial)
Continuous AF On/Off
AF Assist Lamp Yes
ISO Sensitivity Auto / 100 / 200 / 400 / 800 / 1250 (High Sensitivity Mode: 3200)
White Balance Auto / Daylight / Cloudy / Shade /
Halogen / White Set /
White Balance Adjustment (+10 steps) (except for auto set)
Exposure Program AE
Exposure Compensation 1/3 EV Step, ± 2 EV
Backlight Compensation Yes (at simple mode)
Auto Bracketing (AE) +1/3EV-1EV Step, 3 Frames
Light Metering Intelligent Multiple/Center-weighted/Spot
Shutter Speed 8 - 1/2,000 sec.
Starry Sky Mode: 15, 30, 60 sec.
Self Timer 10 seconds / 2 seconds
Auto Review 1 sec/3 sec/zoom
Review 1x/4x/8x
Picture Adjustment No
Color Effect Mode No
Recording Format JPEG(Design rule for camera file system based on Exif 2.21 standard)
DPOF corresponding
image w/audio:JPEG(Design rule for Camera File system, based on Exif2.23 standard)+QuickTime
Motion image:QuickTime Motion JPEG
Image Quality Fine/Standard
4:3 Aspect Ratio (Still Image) 3072 x 2304
2560 x 1920
2048 x 1536
1600 x 1200
1280 x 960
640 x 480
3:2 Aspect Ratio (Still Image) 3216 x 2144
2560 x 1712
2048 x 1360
16:9 Aspect Ratio (Still Image) 3328 x 1872
2560 x 1440
1920 x 1080
4:3, 3:2, 16:9 Multiaspect
Motion Image (4:3 Aspect Ratio) 640 x 480, 320 x 240
Motion Image (16:9 Aspect Ratio) 848 x 480
Burst Shooting Mode Full-Resolution Image: 3 frames/sec or 2 frames/sec
Full-Resolution: Max. 7 images (standard mode), Max. 5 images (fine mode)
Unlimited Consecutive Shooting Yes
Still Image Recording with Audio 5 seconds
Audio Dubbing Maximum of 10 Seconds
Real-time Histograms Yes
Composition Guide Lines Yes (2 patterns)
Built-in Memory 12.7MB
Scene Mode Help Screen Yes
Auto Angle Detection Yes
Travel Date Yes
Economy Mode Yes
Built-in Flash Mode Auto, Auto/Red-eye Reduction,
Slow Sync./Red-eye Reduction
Forced On/Off
Wide: 0.6 - 4.2m (ISO Auto)
Tele: 0.3 - 2.8m (ISO Auto)
External Flash No
Viewfinder No
LCD Monitor 3.0" Diagonal Polycrystalline TFT LCD Display (230k pixels)
Field of view: approx. 100%
Power LCD Mode, High Angle LCD Mode
Playback Mode 25 or 9-Thumbnail Display
Calendar Display, Zoomed Playback (16x max)
Image Rotation
Slide Show
Favorite Pictures
Trimming, Protection
DPOF Print Setting
Recording Media Built-in Memory
SD Memory Card
SDHC Memory Card
Microphone Yes
Speaker Yes
Direct Print PictBridge
Color Silver
Power Supply Lithium-ion Battery Pack (3.7V, 1000 mAh)(Included)
AC Adaptor (Input: 110-240V AC)(Optional)
Battery Life Up to 270 pictures (CIPA Standard)
ArcSoft® PhotoImpression™ Yes
ArcSoft®Panorama Maker™ Yes
ArcSoft®PhotoBase™ Yes
USB Driver Yes
Lumix® Simple Viewer Yes
Photo Fun Studio Yes
Battery Charger Yes
Battery Pack Yes

Continue to
Features & Controls

Visitors of Steves can visit the stores below for real-time pricing and availability. You can also find hot, soon to expire online offers on a variety of cameras and accessories at our very own Camera Deals page.