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The Panasonic ZS80 / TZ95 is a superzoom compact camera with a feature set quite similar to its predecessor, the ZS70 / TZ90. This model has been a part of Panasonic’s superzoom lineup for the past two years.
It arrives with a slightly larger viewfinder that boasts a significantly higher 2.3 million-dot resolution versus the ZS70’s 1.16 million dots). It keeps many of the exact core specifications, including its 20.3MP sensor, 4K video capabilities, and a lens that provides a focal length equivalent to 24-720mm in 35mm. Still, it does so with a new viewfinder slightly larger than its predecessor.
Panasonic Lumix ZS80 Design
The Panasonic ZS80 and TZ95 have very similar designs to those of their predecessors, the ZS70 and TZ90. The only alterations are with the numerous controls around the rear and what they activate. The letter “L” has been removed from the front plate, and some other minor aesthetic adjustments have been made elsewhere. The ZS80 is around 1.5 millimetres deeper and 6 grams heavier, although the changes in size and weight are so minute that they are indiscernible when held in the hands.
The body is quite neatly crafted, and it is evident that it is a step above the cheaper compacts that make up a large portion of the products in this category. However, due to its low-down position, the camera can be held much more firmly with two fingers placed against it.
The front has a very clearly defined grip that looks to be meant for the inside of the middle finger. A thumb rest supplements this on the rear of the camera. As a result, the overall handling of the device is superior to that of a significant number of other cameras in its category.
Panasonic Lumix ZS80 Image Quality
Even though the edges and corners of the frame are visibly softer, the sharpness at the 24mm end of the lens is excellent in the middle of the frame while shooting at the widest aperture of f/3.5.
It would be best if you stuck to shutter speeds of 1/125 second and above, with better (and more consistent) results at 1/200 second and above. Although the image stabilization system does an excellent job of keeping things stable as you travel up the zoom range, you should stick to shutter speeds of 1/125 second and above.
The exposures are also often accurate, but because of this type of sensor’s relatively limited dynamic range, even a slight overexposure might cause highlights to lose some of their information. When shooting in raw format, it is simple to apply exposure correction, and you also have greater leeway for making finer changes.
The colours look great with the default settings, and the automatic white balance does a decent job of preserving the integrity of the original lighting conditions.
It’s great that you can assign the selection of these to the Lens Control ring because it lets you quickly get an idea of how each one looks in a given scene. The raft of Photo Styles allows you to capture images with different looks, and it’s great that you can capture images with different eyes.
Panasonic Lumix ZS80 Specs
|Max resolution||5184 x 3888|
|Image ratio w:h||1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9|
|Effective pixels||20 megapixels|
|Sensor photo detectors||21 megapixels|
|Sensor size||1/2.3″ (6.17 x 4.55 mm)|
|ISO||Auto, 80-3200 (expands to 6400)|
|Boosted ISO (maximum)||6400|
|White balance presets||5|
|Custom white balance||Yes (4 sots)|
|JPEG quality levels||Fine, standard|
|Focal length (equiv.)||24–720 mm|
|Autofocus||Contrast Detect (sensor)Multi-areaCenterSelective single-pointTrackingSingleContinuousTouchFace DetectionLive View|
|Digital zoom||Yes (4X)|
|Normal focus range||50 cm (19.69″)|
|Macro focus range||3 cm (1.18″)|
|Screen type||TFT LCD|
|Minimum shutter speed||4 sec|
|Maximum shutter speed||1/2000 sec|
|Maximum shutter speed (electronic)||1/16000 sec|
|Manual exposure mode||Yes|
|Subject / scene modes||Yes|
|Flash range||5.60 m (with Auto ISO)|
|Flash modes||Auto, Auto/Red-eye Reduction, Forced On, Forced On/Red-eye Reduction, Slow Sync, Slow Sync/Red-eye Reduction, Forced Off|
|Continuous drive||10.0 fps|
|Exposure compensation||±5 (at 1/3 EV steps)|
|AE Bracketing||±3 (3, 5, 7 frames at 1/3 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV steps)|
|Modes||3840 x 2160 @ 30p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC3840 x 2160 @ 25p / 100 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 28 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC1920 x 1080 @ 50p / 28 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 20 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC1920 x 1080 @ 25p / 20 Mbps, MP4, H.264, AAC|
|Storage types||SD/SDHC/SDXC (UHS-I supported)|
|USB||USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)|
|Wireless notes||802.11b/g/n + Bluetooth|
|Remote control||Yes (via smartphone)|
|Battery description||DMW-BLG10 lithium-ion battery & charger|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||380|
|Weight (inc. batteries)||327 g (0.72 lb / 11.53 oz)|
|Dimensions||112 x 69 x 42 mm (4.41 x 2.72 x 1.65″)|
Panasonic Lumix ZS80 Verdict
The ZS80 / TZ95 is not a very big advance on what we have seen previously in the TZ line, but it is endowed with a quick autofocus mechanism, outstanding build quality, and a viewfinder quite serviceable. The image quality of this camera can be hit or miss, as is the case with any camera with a sensor of this size, yet, it is still one of the finest cameras of its class.