Panasonic ZS100 Review

Panasonic ZS100 Review (TZ100 in the EU And TZ101 in Germany): Travel zoom camera with 1″ sensor:

With the introduction of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU and TZ101 in Germany), Panasonic, the inventor of travel zoom cameras, virtually reinvented this category. Although the zoom range has grown steadily in recent years, the image quality has not.

The Panasonic ZS100 (TZ101) virtually reverses this development. The tenfold zoom is based on traditional values; instead, the 20-megapixel sensor has four times the area of previous travel zoom cameras.

This promises a better picture quality. At the same time, the ZS100 remains compact and packed full of functions. In the test, the Panasonic Lumix ZS100 has to show whether the concept really works.

Panasonic ZS100 Pros And Cons

Pros

  • Plenty of zoom with a medium sensor in a pocket-sized housing
  • Large scope of equipment and features.
  • Good video quality
  • Good image quality up to ISO 800

Cons

  • A lens with low light and resolution at the telephoto end
  • Slippery housing gives little grip
  • Screen not movable
  • Right little finder

Many years ago, Panasonic revolutionized the compact camera segment with the TZ1, a ten-x zoom digital camera in a 4-centimeter slim body. This resulted in an entire, extremely successful device category: the travel zoom cameras.

In 2016, Panasonic took the travel zoom series to a new level: The Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU) combines a large 1″ image sensor with a tenfold zoom in a 4.4- centimeter flat housing.

panasonic zs100

The new pop-up flash of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU) is no longer as easily concealed as in earlier TZ models, where the flash was located at the top of the handle. [Photo: Panasonic]

 

panasonic zs100

In addition to the 7.5-centimeter touchscreen with a resolution of one million pixels, the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU) also offers an electronic viewfinder with 0.46x magnification and 1.2 million pixels resolution that can be activated by an eye sensor. [Photo: Panasonic]

 

panasonic zs100

Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU). [Photo: Panasonic]

The ZS100 is hardly any larger than the TZ71, which has been replaced by the TZ81 parallel to the ZS100.

The housings of the TZ71 and ZS100 measure eleven times 6.5 centimeters in width and height.

The depth of the ZS100, however, has increased by one centimeter, and the weight has also increased by almost 70 grams to 312 grams, including a lithium-ion battery (enough for 320 shots) and an SD memory card (SDHC and SDXC also work).

The design of the ZS100, which has a black metal housing, is based on that of the TZ71. For example, there is still a lens ring for controlling various functions, an electronic viewfinder with eye sensor that magnifies 0.46 times and has a resolution of 1.2 million pixels, a screen with a resolution of almost one million pixels, 7.5 centimeters (3 inches) and a (very) small handle.

In detail, there are some improvements: The screen is now a touch screen and the flash has moved from the handle to the top, where it folds out as a pop-up flash when needed. This means that the flash is no longer accidentally covered by the hand, a shortcoming of many travel zoom cameras.

As usual at Panasonic, the lens is one with the Leica label “DC Vario-Elmarit” and of course with optical image stabilizer. It has a tenfold zoom range, which covers a focal length of 25 to 250 millimeters equivalent to a small picture.

With that, the zoom factor goes back to the roots because it all started with a tenfold zoom (35-350 mm). Today’s travel zoom cameras such as the TZ71 or TZ81, on the other hand, zoom 30x (24-720 mm).

The limitation of the telephoto range, in particular, is a tribute to the larger sensor, which physically requires longer focal lengths and thus larger lenses. After all, the ZS100 with F2.8 offers a good aperture in wide-angle, which shrinks to F5.9 at the telephoto end when zooming in – this is slightly more light than the F3.3-6.4 of the current TZ71 or TZ81 travel zoomers.

Panasonic’s DFD technology, which significantly accelerates the contrast autofocus, is used for focusing. Only two comparison images of different focusing are sufficient to calculate the exact focus point in advance and to be able to approach it directly, similar to a phase autofocus of DSLRs.

According to Panasonic, this should take only 0.1 seconds according to the CIPA standard measurement procedure. Especially for long focal lengths, the DFD autofocus should show its advantages over the conventional contrast autofocus.

Of course, the ZS100 can also be manually focused, with a focus loupe and focus peaking available. The new post-focus function has even moved to its own button. If you press it before the shutter is released, the camera saves a whole series of focuses in a resolution of 8.3 megapixels (instead of 20 megapixels as with a normal photo). The photographer can subsequently extract individual images with the desired focus point.

 

panasonic zs100

When switched off, the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU) is 4.4 centimeters flat and takes up little space in the (travel) bag. [Photo: Panasonic]

 

panasonic zs100

The lens barrel of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU) unfolds when switched on. [Photo: Panasonic]

 

panasonic zs100

The lens of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU) reaches an impressive length when extended to Tele (250 mm according to 35mm). [Photo: Panasonic]

 

The image sensor is the well-known and proven 1″ CMOS sensor (13.2 x 8.8 millimetres) with 20 megapixels resolution, which also masters 4K video recording.

It is supported by an image processing processor “New Venus Engine” with four computing cores.

As with Panasonic’s European models, the 4K video function is usually limited to 25 frames per second, while only the US model (the ZS100)  can handle 4K videos at 30 frames per second.

But perhaps the TZ100 and TZ101 can also be tricked like some other Lumix models and be like the ZS100: it has a 4K continuous shooting function that shoots 30 frames per second. If the sound is also recorded as before, the result is a 4K video with 30 frames per second.

In Full HD, on the other hand, 50 frames per second are possible in the video from the outset. In high-speed mode, even 100 frames per second are available in full HD resolution.

The integrated stereo microphone provides the necessary sound. The videos are limited to a maximum recording length of 29 minutes and 59 seconds at a time, as is customary for European models for customs reasons. AVCHD and MP4, each with H.264 compression, are available as storage formats.

If one wants to take serial pictures with a resolution of more than 8,3 megapixels, this is possible with ten instead of 30 pictures per second. The Panasonic ZS100 not only offers intelligent fully automatic shooting, but also numerous motif programs, which Panasonic has given a very flowery name to (e.g. “romantic” sunset), as well as the classic creative programs P, A, S, and M.

The Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU) is also available in a variety of different modes. The photos can even be saved in raw format. The numerous effect filters offer a different creativity than the handling of aperture and exposure time.

Thanks to WLAN, photos can be quickly transferred to smartphones, tablets, and televisions. However, Panasonic has rationalized the NFC module away. With the help of the corresponding app, the camera can also be triggered remotely, including live image transmission and the setting of numerous functions.

panasonic zs100

Ergonomics and Workmanship

The Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) and Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ101 in Germany, looks modern and elegant. It has a matt black lacquered metal housing and weighs just over 300 grams ready for operation.

As beautiful as the case may look, it’s not functional: The indicated handle is much too smooth due to the lack of rubber coating, even the thumb rest on the back does not offer an anti-slip surface.

Panasonic could have done a lot better. Nevertheless, the camera is quite acceptable. With a total depth of 4.7 centimeters from the lens front to the viewfinder, the ZS100 is a bit thick for a travel zoom camera, but with a width of eleven and a height of 6.5 centimeters, it still falls into the compact category. With her tenfold zoom, she reflects on traditional values, as her ten-year-old ancestor ZS1 or TZ1 also has a tenfold zoom.

Whereas 35 to 350 millimeters in the 35mm equivalent were required back then, today the ZS100 has 25 to 250 millimeters, i.e. significantly more wide angle. But since the ZS100 has four times the resolution, it would be fun to use it to digitally zoom twice to 500 millimeters of 35mm equivalent and still have the same resolution as the TZ1.

Although the 7.5-centimeter screen of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ101 is a touchscreen, it lacks mobility. At least it could have been folded up and down.

panasonic zs100

Compared to other travel zoom cameras, the ZS100 stands out with its four times larger sensor. The ZS100 is currently unrivaled in this respect because with a similar size, the competition has either less zoom (but more light intensity) or a significantly larger housing at the same time with a larger zoom.

But the luminous intensity is also a point where the ZS100 is lacking. The F2.8 in wide-angle is still fine, but F5.9 in telescopic position is really not much. Fortunately, the Lumix has an optical image stabilizer. In the telescopic position, the stately lens moves 6.3 centimeters out of the housing.

When zooming, the light intensity falls quite quickly, by the way. Even at 46 millimeters (35mm) the aperture jumps to F4, at 123 millimeters to F5.6.

The zoom itself, however, can be steplessly adjusted in the finest steps by means of the ring-shaped zoom lever, practically the Lumix displays the equivalent focal length directly on the screen.

Since the lens has a 1.8 centimeter long, fixed tube, this space is sufficient for an ample, stepless adjustment ring. This can take over various functions, also depending on the operating mode: for example a step zoom with ten steps at 25, 28, 35, 50, 70, 90, 135, 160, 200 and 250 millimeters or manual focusing (of course including magnifying glass and peaking) or the setting of the aperture. By the way, the latter is done in third steps and up to a maximum of F8.

This results in a further disadvantage due to the light weakness: In telescopic position, there are hardly any aperture adjustment options because, in contrast to other 1-inch sensor cameras, F11 is missing. Unfortunately, the ZS100 also lacks a retractable gray filter to gain some flexibility in bright ambient light.

Back to Operation: In addition to the lens ring, the ZS100 has a program selector wheel and a thumbwheel, which is also located on top of the housing.

In addition, twelve additional keys line the back of the unit, some of which can be individually programmed. Even for ambitious photographers important functions such as an AF-On button or an AEL function are not missing. The 7.5-centimeter touch screen provides even more individualization, as it can be used to display additional virtual function keys.

Of course, touching the screen also allows focusing on a tapped subject detail and, if desired, even simultaneous triggering. Unfortunately, however, the screen is firmly installed. The ZS100 would have stood up well to the face with a little mobility, at least downwards and upwards, especially since such mechanisms, as Sony shows, could be built very thinly, i.e. hardly applied. The screen, however, with over one million pixels, shows a finely resolved, colorful and sufficiently bright image.

panasonic zs100

Thanks to the program selector wheel, thumbwheel and lens ring, as well as numerous buttons, the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU), can also be used wonderfully by ambitious users.

 

panasonic zs100

As the first travel zoom camera, the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) has a relatively large 1-inch sensor (13.2 x 8.8 millimeters) with a resolution of 20 megapixels.

 

If you don’t like screens, but prefer to look through a viewfinder, the ZS100 offers at least a makeshift. Almost 1.2 million pixels sound promising at first, but the small viewfinder only offers a 0.46x magnification related to 35mm, so it is extremely puny.

The image also appears somewhat paler and less contrasting than the screen. After all, the viewfinder image can still be seen even with glasses, even if the corners shade a little.

Also, a small diopter correction is built-in, and an automatic switching from the screen to the viewfinder is also not missing.

In addition, the touch function of the screen for setting the autofocus field remains active, which can also be annoying for left-eyed photographers if the nose moves the autofocus point. Fortunately, this function can be switched off.

Besides the many buttons, there is also the typical quick menu and of course very extensive main menus, which are a bit confusing due to scrolling several pages.

The case itself offers a small interface flap on the right side, which conceals an HDMI and a USB interface, each in the micro version.

The lithium-ion battery is also charged via the USB socket. It’s convenient when you’re traveling because charging also works with a smartphone charger and the same cable. However, if you want to charge the battery externally, you have to buy an additional charging cradle or a universal charger. After all, the energy dispenser holds out for a good 300 shots according to the CIPA standard, i.e. even at 50 percent flash use. If you don’t flash a lot, you can take a few more photos.

The battery is removed together with the memory card in a common compartment on the underside of the camera. If you want to use the 4K video function as well as the 4K photo functions, you should use an SDHC or SDXC card of the UHS speed class three, which guarantees a minimum write speed of 30 MByte/s.

The SDHC or SDXC card has a minimum write speed of 30 MByte/s. This can be recognized by a 3 in a U. The tripod thread can also be found on the underside. The placement is somewhat unfortunate, however, as it sits outside the optical axis and right next to the battery and memory card compartment.

Thus, in order to change it, not only the camera has to be unscrewed from the tripod, but also the tripod exchange plate.

Equipment And Features

The travel zoom camera is suitable for a wide range of user requirements. If you simply want to “take a picture”, all settings are taken by the intelligent automatic system, which recognizes faces, scene modes, objective movements, blur, etc. and controls all shooting parameters accordingly in order to achieve the best possible shooting result.

Many switchable filter effects and the panorama function round off the automatic range. If you want to be creative with aperture, shutter speed, ISO sensitivity, white balance, and perhaps even manual focus, you’ll find it all here.

Recently, even the filter effects in the creative programs P, A, S, and M can be used. In addition to the individualization of the many buttons, preferred settings can also be stored in one of a total of three memory locations and called up quickly via the program selector wheel.

Also practical is the possibility to choose between mechanical (1/2,000 to 60 seconds) and electronic (1/16,000 to 1 second) shutter, whereby the mechanical shutter is also barely audible. The electronic one, however, offers somewhat shorter exposure times, but you have to accept the rolling shutter effect.

A special highlight is the special 4K photo options. The ZS100 takes normal full-resolution continuous shots in raw or JPEG with (re-measured) just under ten frames per second. If the autofocus is to be adjusted, there are still six continuous shots per second.

Speaking of autofocus, it works extremely fast and focuses in less than 0.2 seconds, almost regardless of the zoom position. Also, the pure release delay of 0.03 seconds is very short. With the 4K continuous-advance function, the resolution drops to 8.3 megapixels per image, but 30 images per second are captured with autofocus tracking.

Here the photographer has the choice of taking 30 pictures before and 30 after pressing the shutter release button so as not to miss the right moment, or whether to take a long series of pictures. If you can’t decide on a focus point, near or far, the post-focus function, which also works in 4K, can help. With a series of shots, up to 49 autofocus fields are controlled and an image is taken with each focus point.

Later, you can then decide on the touchscreen where you would like the sharpness to be or, using external programs, calculate the images so that everything is sharply displayed.

 

panasonic zs100

The lens ring of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) takes over various functions depending on the mode, such as step zoom, manual focusing or aperture setting.

 

panasonic zs100

In addition to the micro HDMI interface, the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) also offers a micro USB socket. It can also be remotely controlled via WLAN.

The lens ring of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) takes over various functions depending on the mode, such as step zoom, manual focusing or aperture setting.

In contrast to the 4K photo functions, the 4K video function only achieves 25 instead of 30 frames per second. We are still hoping that Panasonic will eventually eliminate this shortcoming of the European model, that does not exist in the US model. Until then, you can theoretically make do with the 4K photo function because it also records the sound. With the downshift of the resolution, the possible frame rate increases, for example, 50p with Full-HD. Zoom (with low noise) and focus (noiseless) can be used during video recording.

Thanks to the dedicated recording button, video recordings can also be started at any time. The video mode on the program selector wheel, however, allows further settings from filters to manual video exposure.

The high-speed video mode even records 100 frames per second in Full HD, which is played back in quad slow motion at 25 frames per second. In addition to MP4, AVCHD is also available as a video format; the maximum quality is 100 MBit/s in MP4 format.

Another advantage of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) over its ZS and TZ predecessors is the placement of the flash. This does not lie unfavorably and easily covered by the finger in the handle but jumps up after manual activation almost centrally over the lens.

The performance or range, however, is somewhat modest. Besides a flash exposure correction, there is a long time synchronization as well as, at least theoretically, a synchronization to the second shutter curtain.

The flash always ignited at the beginning of the exposure despite the opposite setting. However, wireless flash control or plugging in an external flash unit is unfortunately not possible. After all, the flash can be directed towards the ceiling for indirect flashing, but the low power has a questionable effect.

In playback mode, there are only rudimentary editing options for JPEG recordings, such as cropping or rotating. After all, videos can be divided into two pieces, the creation of stop motion or time-lapse videos is also possible, a corresponding interval recording function is available.

Raw images, on the other hand, can be processed more extensively. For example, when converting to JPEG, the white balance can be adjusted.

In addition, the ZS100 offers WLAN, but without NFC, even a QR code for easy connection cannot be displayed. The free Panasonic app, which is available for Android and iOS, allows extensive remote control functions including live image transmission. Of course, photos taken can also be transferred from the memory card to the smartphone.

The app offers a GPS log function, the location information can later be transferred to the camera via WLAN and stored in the EXIF information of the photos.

Practically, the camera clock can be synchronized with the time of the smartphone via WLAN. Even without a smartphone, images can be transmitted to a television set via DLNA, for example.

Picture Quality Of The Panasonic ZS100

The Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) is equipped with a 13.2 x 8.8 millimeter 1″ sensor with 20 megapixels resolution, which has four times the area of the 1/2.3″ sensors normally used in this class.

In return, the ZS100 offers only a tenfold zoom, which covers a focal length range of 25 to 250 millimeters equivalent to a small picture. Good prerequisites to stand out from the crowd in terms of image quality.

 

panasonic zs100

The tripod thread of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) is not only located outside the optical axis but also very close to the battery and memory card compartment so that it is blocked by the tripod or the tripod exchange plate.

 

panasonic zs100

The tenfold zoom of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) extends to an impressive length at the final focal length of 91 millimeters (250 mm 35 mm equivalent).

 

Lenses with a large zoom range often suffer from certain quality defects, and the ZS100 is no exception. Optical defects such as distortion, edge darkening, and color fringes are very minor and are now digitally corrected.

If you take 20 x 30-centimeter paper photos as a basis, the sharpness at all apertures and focal lengths are completely sufficient both in the center and at the edge of the picture.

But you would expect a lot more from a 20-megapixel camera. Here, a look at the resolution at 50 percent contrast shows that the human eye perceives very well where the quality limits of the lens lie. At 25 millimeters the resolution is very good with about 50 line pairs per millimeter (lp/mm, related to 35mm) in the center from F2.8 to F5.6, at F8 the resolution drops to 44 lp/mm due to diffraction.

On the other hand, significant losses can be measured at the edge of the picture. Here, the resolution only oscillates between 25 and 34 lp/mm, which means a high edge drop of the resolution. Often this is not only a weakness of the lens but partly also a consequence of the digital correction of distortions, which the lens undoubtedly exhibits physically.

If you zoom optically to an average focal length of 80 millimeters corresponding to 35mm, the resolution is clearly more even, but this is not due to an increased edge resolution, but rather to a clearly decreased resolution in the center of the image.

Here only 38 lp/mm are reached at F4.7 and F5.6, at F8 the resolution drops to 31 lp/mm due to diffraction. At the edge of the picture, 31 to 36 lp/mm are reached. When zooming further, the resolution drops again to only 27 to 35 lp/mm in the center of the image at 250 millimeters corresponding to 35mm and 22 to 25 lp/mm at the edge of the image.

Thus, the ZS100 doesn’t exactly cover itself with glory here, but still performs significantly better than the old TZ71, whose resolution wasn’t even sufficient for 20 x 30-centimeter paper prints.

The relatively large sensor promises less noise and more detail resolution at higher ISO values than the usual smaller sensors. In fact, the signal-to-noise ratio up to ISO 1.600 is in the acceptable range of more than 35 dB, only at ISO 3.200 it drops slightly below that.

For comparison: The TZ71 can maintain an acceptable level up to ISO 400, but is worse than the ZS100 from ISO 800. The texture sharpness, which indicates the drawing of the finest details, is very good with the ZS100 to ISO 400.

In addition, it begins to decrease due to noise suppression and at ISO 1.600 scratches at the limit of visible detail reduction. Obviously Panasonic uses a more aggressive noise reduction. Nevertheless, it is superior to the TZ71 at higher ISO sensitivity, although not quite as strong as expected. The noise itself is fine-grained, with brightness noise from ISO 6,400 and color noise only visible at ISO 25,600.

The TZ71 only reaches ISO 6,400 and shows clear brightness noise from ISO 1,600. The input dynamics of the ZS100 are at a good level of about 10.5 f-stops up to high ISO 6,400. This is a clear advantage over the TZ71, especially for ISO 800 and above. With a steep tone value curve for crisp image results, the ZS100’s output tone value range is also significantly better than that of the TZ71 at higher ISO sensitivities.

Up to ISO 1.600 the value is good, up to ISO 12.800 acceptable.

The Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) reproduces colors quite accurately on average but reserves the right to make a few exceptions. Yellow, for example, is slightly greenish, cyan tends towards blue (which makes the sky more beautiful in my opinion) and violet is more saturated.

Red, on the other hand, tends a little towards orange. According to laboratory tests, there is nothing wrong with the extremely accurate manual white balance. In practice, too, the automatic white balance usually succeeds in taking good pictures, which, however, retain the mood of the light in warm light sources and thus actually appear a little too reddish.

However, the Preset settings lack settings for fluorescent light. Fine-tuning also allows you to adjust the white balance to suit your taste. You have full freedom with recordings in raw data format. The measured color depth also gives no cause for criticism, up to ISO 12,800 over two million colors are differentiated, up to ISO 1,600 even over four million and at the lowest ISO sensitivities (80, 100 and 125) even over eight million.

The advantages of the larger sensor are shown in a higher resolution but less in the detail reproduction at higher sensitivities, which is due to the noise suppression.

Nevertheless, the image quality is significantly better overall at higher sensitivities because the photos are reproduced with more tonal value, with significantly more color gradations and higher dynamics.

 

panasonic zs100

The lithium-ion battery of the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU) should be sufficient for at least 300 shots. It is loaded via USB. The SD memory card is also located in the battery compartment, whereby the card for 4K videos should support UHS Speed Class 3.

Conclusions: Is The Panasonic ZS100 Worth It?

With the Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in the EU), Panasonic has once again cleverly pushed into a gap in the market because the other 1″ cameras either offer significantly less zoom or are much larger.

This makes the Panasonic ZS100 currently unrivaled and convincing with its wide range of features in a compact housing combined with a good operation for ambitious photographers.

But even beginners will have fun with the Lumix thanks to the good automatic controls and easily adjustable filter effects.

On the other hand, the Panasonic ZS100 has to accept criticism for its excessively smooth case. It looks chic, but the handle is definitely missing a non-slip cover.

Panasonic would also like to think about a foldable screen.

The built-in viewfinder deserves praise for its presence, but its quality and tiny size make it more of a makeshift that people don’t like to use.

The image quality, however, is good and clearly superior to previous travel zoom cameras, especially at higher ISO values.

The declining image quality or resolution at increasing zoom, which is typical for Panasonic in particular, is, unfortunately, one of the more unattractive features of the ZS100.

Panasonic ZS100 Fact Sheet

Fact sheet
Manufacturer Panasonic
Model Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU)
Sensor CMOS 1″ 13.2 x 8.8 mm (crop factor 2.7) 20.9 megapixels (physical)
20.1 megapixels (effective)
Pixel pitch 2.4 µm
Resolution (max.) 5.472 x 3.648 (3:2)
Lens F2,8-5,9/25-250mm
Filter threads No filter thread installed
Video viewfinder EVF, 100 % field coverage, 1,166,000 pixels resolution, 2.6x magnification (sensor-related), 0.5x magnification (KB equivalent), diopter compensation
Monitor 3.0″ (7.5 cm)
Disbandment 1.040.000 pixels
tiltable
rotatable
swiveling
Touchscreen yes
AV connectors
Video PAL/NTSC (switchable) (HDMI output Micro (type D))
Fully automatic yes
Automatic motive control yes
Scene modes 24 scene modes are present
Program automation yes
Program shift yes
Aperture priority yes
Aperture priority yes
Manual yes
Bulb long time exposure yes
HDR function yes
Panorama function yes, Sweep panorama
Exposure metering Multi-field, Centre-weighted Integral, Spot
fastest shutter speed 1/2.000 s
Flash built-in
Synchronous time 1/2.000 s
Flash connection
WLAN yes
NFC
GPS external, smartphone as GPS logger
Remote release yes, remote control via Smartphone/Tablet
Interval shooting yes
Storage medium
SD (SDHC, SDXC, UHS I)
Sensitivity
automatic ISO 125-12.800
manually ISO 80-25.600
White balance
automatic yes
manual measurement yes
Kelvin input yes
Fine correction yes
Autofocus yes
Number of measuring fields 49 Contrast sensors
Speed 0.19 to 0.22 s
AF auxiliary light LED
Dimensions (WxHxD) 111 x 65 x 44 mm
Weight (ready for operation) 311 g
Tripod socket outside the optical axis
Zoom
Zoom adjustment Lens ring (motorized), ring rocker (motorized)
Battery life 300 (according to CIPA standard)
– = “not applicable” or “not available”

Short evaluation

Pros

  • Plenty of zoom with a medium sensor in a pocket-sized housing
  • Large scope of equipment
  • Good video quality
  • Good image quality up to ISO 800

Cons

  • A lens with low light and resolution at the telephoto end
  • Slippery housing gives little grip
  • Screen not movable
  • Right little finder

Panasonic ZS100 (TZ100 in most of the EU) Datasheet

Electronics

Sensor CMOS sensor 1″ 13.2 x 8.8 mm (crop factor 2.7) 20.9 megapixels (physical), 20.1 megapixels (effective)
Pixel pitch 2.4 µm
Photo resolution
5.472 x 3.648 pixels (3:2)
5.472 x 3.080 Pixel (16:9)
4.864 x 3.080 Pixel
3.888 x 2.592 pixels (3:2)
3.840 x 2.160 pixels (16:9)
3.648 x 3.648 pixels (1:1)
3.456 x 2.592 pixels (4:3)
2.736 x 1.824 Pixel (3:2)
2.592 x 2.592 pixels (1:1)
2.432 x 1.824 Pixel (4:3)
1.920 x 1.080 Pixel (16:9)
1.824 x 1.824 Pixel (1:1)
Picture formats JPG, RAW
Color depth 24 bits (8 bits per color channel)
Metadata Exif (version 2.3), DCF standard
Video resolution
3.840 x 2.160 (16:9) 25 p
3.840 x 2.160 (16:9) 24 p
1.920 x 1.080 (16:9) 100 p
1.920 x 1.080 (16:9) 50 p
1.920 x 1.080 (16:9) 50 i
1.920 x 1.080 (16:9) 50 i
1.920 x 1.080 (16:9) 25 p
1.920 x 1.080 (16:9) 24 p
1.280 x 720 (16:9) 25 p
640 x 480 (4:3) 25 p
Maximum recording time 29 min 59 sec
Video format
AVCHD (Codec H.264)
MP4 (Codec H.264)

Lens

Focal length 25 to 250 mm (35mm-equivalent) 10x Zoom 9.1 to 91 mm (physical)
Digital zoom 2x
Focus range 50 cm to infinity (wide-angle) 100 cm to infinity (telephoto)
Macro sector 3 cm (wide-angle) 100 cm (telephoto)
Apertures F2.8 to F8 (wide-angle) F5.9 to F8 (telephoto)
Autofocus yes
Autofocus mode Contrast autofocus with 49 measuring fields
Autofocus Functions Single Auto Focus, Continuous Auto Focus, Area Auto Focus, Tracking Auto Focus, Manual, AFL Function, AF Assist Light (LED), Focus Peaking, Focus Magnifier (10x)
Filter threads No filter thread

Viewfinder and Monitor

Monitor 3.0″ (7.5 cm) TFT LCD monitor with 1,040,000 pixels, touchscreen, anti-glare, brightness adjustable, color adjustable
Video viewfinder Video viewfinder (100 % field coverage) with 1,166,000 pixels, magnification factor 1.20x (0.46x KB equivalent), diopter compensation

Exposure

Exposure metering Center-weighted integral measurement, matrix/multi-field measurement, spot measurement
Exposure times 1/2,000 to 60 s (Auto) 1/2,000 to 60 s (Manual)
Bulb with a maximum 120 s exposure time1/16,000 to 1 s (Electronic)
Exposure control Fully automatic, Program automatic (with program shift), Aperture priority, Aperture priority, Manual, Scene automatic
Bracketing function Exposure bracketing function with maximum 7 shots, step size from 1/3 to 1 EV, and HDR function
Exposure compensation -5.0 to +5.0 EV with a step size of 1/3 EV
Sensitivity to light ISO 125 to ISO 12.800 (automatic) ISO 80 to ISO 25.600 (manual)
Remote access Remote control via Smartphone/Tablet
Scene modes Flowers, Backlight, Children, Landscape, Night Scene, Night Landscape, Night Portrait, Portrait, Sunset, Food, Sports/Action, 13 other scene modes
Picture effects Bleach bypass, cross development, high key, low key, miniature effect, monochrome, retro, sepia, softer, toy camera, 12 more image effects
White balance Auto, Clouds, Sun, Fine-tuning, Shadow, Flash, Incandescent, from 2,500 to 10,000 K, Manual 4 memories
Color space sRGB
Continuous shooting 10 fps at the highest resolution, 40 fps only with an electronic shutter. 4K burst 30 frames/s max. 15 min, 4K pre burst function 30 frames/s max 2 s
Burst function Burst function
Self-timer Self-timer every 10 s, special features: additional 2 seconds self-timer and 3-fold self-timer function
Timer Timer/interval recording with max. 9,999 recordings, start time adjustable
Shooting functions AEL function, AFL function, live histogram

Flashgun Of The Panasonic ZS100

Flash built-in flash (hinged)
Flash range 0.6 to 8.0 m at wide angle0.7 to 3.8 m at telephoto flash range
at ISO automatic flash sync time 1/2,000 s
Flash functions Auto, Fill Flash, Flash On, Flash Off, Slow Sync, Red-eye Reduction, Flash Exposure Compensation from -2.0 EV to +2.0 EV

Equipment And Features

Image stabilizer electronic image stabilizer, lens shift (optical)
Memory
SD (SDHC, SDXC, UHS I)
Panorama Swivel panorama
GPS function GPS external (Smartphone as GPS-Logger)
Microphone Stereo
Power supply USB charging function
Power supply 1 x lithium-ion (Li-Ion) battery (7.2 V, 1.025 mAh) 300 images according to CIPA standard
Playback Functions Red-eye retouching, video editing, image cropping, image rotation, image protection, playback histogram, playback magnifier with 16.0x magnification, image index, slideshow function with music and fade effects, reduction
Face recognition Face Recognition, Face Recognition (6 faces)
Picture parameters Sharpness, Contrast, Saturation, Noise Reduction
Grid can be faded in during the recording yes, it can be faded
Special functions Electronic spirit level, orientation sensor, Live View, user profiles with 3 user profiles
Ports Data interfaces: USB – USB type: USB 2.0 – WLAN: available (type: B, G, N) Audio output: no – Audio input: no – Video output: yes (HDMI output Micro (type D))
Supported direct printing methods DPOF
Tripod socket 1/4″ not in optical axis
Features and Miscellaneous 5-Axis Image Stabilizer for Video Shooting 20x
Intelligent Zoom Post Focus Function TouchAF+/-
3 EV Exposure Compensation for Movie Shooting7
Photo Styles2
Movie Styles

Size and weight

Weight 311 g (ready for operation)
Dimensions W x H x D 111 x 65 x 44 mm

Other

included accessories USB cable, lithium-ion battery, charger, CD-ROM, wrist strap
USB
USB 2.0

 

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Peter Dench
I am Peter Dench. Digital Photographer, born in London 1972, currently living in Deerfield, near Chicago. I have numerous photography expositions and also working in model photography. In this website, PhotoPoint, I usually review cameras provided by local dealers in Illinois and by the manufacturers. Sometimes I, Peter Dench, review lenses too, but only when I have a suitable camera for them. Please let me know in the comments if I can improve any of these articles.