Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ1 vs. LX-1

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Panno Zhai, May 12, 2006.

  1. Panno Zhai

    Panno Zhai Guest,panasonic_dmclx1&show=all

    In August 2005, Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX1 was released. It was half-way
    between a P&S and "pro" dSLR by picture quality, thanks to the big
    Leica lens. It also had 9:16 ratio of the image. Though, some people
    compalined that the image was too noisy, even at an ISO of 100. (The
    other people said it presented no problem because the noise-reduction
    software did the job, and probably it was the original idea.)

    Now come Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ1, released in February 2006. It has a
    smaller resolution of 5MP (vs. 8MP) which is still enough for me. It
    has an x10 zoom (vs. x4), however it does not have TIFF/RAW format (not
    that I care about those at this time). The LCD is the same and has
    around 200k pixels (that's a lot !). It has a newer processor, which is
    reported to consume less energy and to do a better job at removing
    purple fringing.

    In the past few weeks, I was thinking about getting an LX1 camera.
    However, I just noticed that this new camera TZ1 was released. It has
    the same features which I care about (big speedy lens, large LCD screen
    of the same size, short shutter lag etc). I do not know which one I
    should get. It is not clear from the reviews if TZ1 provides a
    lower-noise pictures, and if the lens has the same or better capability
    (the good quality of images in LX1 was because the lens passed through
    a lot of light due to its big size). Someone can comment on this ?

    Panno Zhai, May 12, 2006
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  2. Panno Zhai

    ~~NoMad~~ Guest

    FWIW: I have the TZ1 and have no complaints. It is a wonderful camera. The
    10x lens in this small size is beyond comparison. I can carry the camera
    easily in a belt pouch and that is a must for me riding a dirtbike. I have
    photographed antelope rutting from over half a mile away, impossible any
    other way.

    Love the thing!

    ~~NoMad~~, May 12, 2006
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  3. Advantages of each:
    LX1: Goes wider than the TZ1
    Offers manual shutter/aperture/focus control
    Slightly smaller/lighter than TZ1
    TZ1: Goes significantly longer than LX1
    Roughly half the price

    The lenses are roughly comparable on paper, f/2.8 at the wide end and
    f/4.2 (TZ1) or f/4.9 (LX1) at the tele end. However, I'd look to see if
    there are any detailed reviews of the TZ1 to see if its lens quality is
    up to the same standard as the LX1 (or the FZ series).

    Daniel Silevitch, May 12, 2006
  4. Panno Zhai

    Panno Zhai Guest

    Well, yesterday I went to the camera shop with my own SD card and tried
    the cameras I was interested in, namely Panasonic Lumix LX1 and Canon
    A700 (they did not have Fuji FinePix F10/F11, because it was either
    discontinued or "for Europe" only).

    Later at home, I looked at the Panasonic LX1 pictures I made (JPEG
    only). The lens was indeed good and reproduced the fine details (such
    as inscriptures). There was some noise which was magically removed by
    Noise Ninja (I found this advice on the Internet). The other thing I
    liked was the short focal length (28 mm equiv.) which would allow me to
    cram a wide group of people into the shot. I used the camera in the
    AUTO mode and without the flash, so that the pictures of the moving
    people inside of the shop were blurred. The shutter lag was OK. People
    said in reviews that the build quality was excellent, althogh I did not
    notice anything impressive. The overall feeling of the camera made me

    I tried Canon A700 in the AUTO mode and with the flash. I received
    sharp good pictures of the people and good color of the faces. Later,
    looking at the pictures at home, I could not find much of noticeable
    difference with the Panasonic LX1 pictures. The shape of the camera was
    practical. I recalled people's saying that "you cannot go wrong with a
    Canon", and I thought that Canon is a "Toyota" of cameras. The camera
    had x6 zoom, and this was fun.

    I noticed some buyer holding the camera Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX01. The
    shop assistant said it was so "hot" that they run out of the stock. I
    looked at the camera and did some pictures. Overall, it seems to me to
    be a "smaller" version of LX1. It has 28 mm focal length, although
    optics and CCD (CMOS ?) chip is less capable. The shutter lag was more
    pronounced than in LX1, although it was still OK. The camera had a an
    all-metal body and was very small, so it seems to me it was really
    convenient to carry in your pocket. It was impressive. However, I was
    on the market for a larger good-image quality camera.

    In conclusion, no camera of the initial list of 3 had all the features
    which I was concsiously interested in. Overall, I needed a camera which
    would have impressive capabilities in the whole range of situations
    (good quality of details and correct colors [Panasonic LX1], shooting
    indoor without a flash [Fuji F11 - ?], simple and a pleasure to work
    with [Canon A700], and good zoom (> x6) [Canon again]). My main
    interest in buying the camera was to shoot the interesting views in the
    city architecture. Panasonic LX1 and Canon A700 will do this job
    al'right. I am not going to send my pictures to the photography journal
    or print them as posters, so that Panasonic LX1 seems to be excessive.
    At the moment, I think I want this camera for its outstanding
    qualities, though I may well end up with Canon A700 :) .

    At the shop, I did not feel that I had energy left to try Panasonic
    Lumix DMC-TZ1. It has an x10 zoom, and this should be fun ! However, it
    is yet to be found if the quality of the picture is good at the
    telephoto end of the lens (i.e. if there is enough of details and not
    much noise). Because of the high zoom, the picture quality must
    deteriorate, although the question is how much.

    Panno Zhai, May 14, 2006
  5. Panno Zhai

    grruffbowwow Guest

    ...... SNIP

    It sounds like you're looking at all-round cameras, the Pana TZ-1 is a
    different beast entirely - image stabilized long zooms are useful if
    you have a need for them, but they won't help if all you want is to
    take pics of your kids.

    Your observation that on average, most brand-name digital cameras these
    days produce very good pics is pretty much right, give or take a few
    lines of resolution or a bit of purple fringing; the difference is in
    the size of the camera, ease of use, and performance in less than ideal
    shooting conditions.

    The Fuji F10/11 is a nice camera; image quality for vacation snapshots
    and kid shots is quite acceptable, but it's being replaced by the F30
    in the next month or so. I picked up an F10 on clearance at Walmart for
    $215 a few weeks ago, maybe you should look around some more.

    You've come to a point where the differences between the candidates
    have become trivial, and the time you're spending stops producing
    anything helpful.... From what you've said, sounds like you and the
    Canon A700 fit together nicely; why don't you go for it?
    grruffbowwow, May 14, 2006
  6. Panno Zhai

    Panno Zhai Guest

    Well, I do not have kids. Neither I need a camera to shoot them. But I
    like the "altogether different" beast the TZ1. I finally was able to
    find the pictures made with this camera -- and I am impressed. The
    quality is better than I expected. I like what I see, and I like the
    concept of the camera. I could have some fun taking it to the nature
    and taking the shots of othervise hard-to-access places. I also can use
    the camera when in the trips to the other cities -- e.g. to shoot the
    architecture details at close-ups. I am looking forward to going to
    shop the coming weekend and trying it.

    Today I downloaded someone's pictures made by LX1 in RAW, and used the
    free RawShooter Essentials converter to convert the RAW pictures into
    the TIFF format. I tell you that was fun playing with the contrast and
    exposure and with other parameters. I like the feeling of being in
    control over the pics which might be wrong exposed. I started thinking
    again if I should buy LX1. Though, I presume I am likely to get tired
    soon from dragging all of the pictures through the RAW converter.
    Besdies, there might be not enough of space on the hard drive of my
    computer eventually :-( . Oh, choices, choices !

    Panno Zhai, May 18, 2006
  7. Panno Zhai

    Panno Zhai Guest

    Oops, I forgot to mention many things. First of all, the samples of
    TZ1-made pictures can be found at .
    (However, I would like to see the pictures made at telephoto regime in
    the dim light conditions.

    Secondly, the price of LX1 dropped by 30% in the past few months. The
    price difference between LX1 and TZ1 is less than 10% now. That's
    nothing. I thought getting an LX1 now would be a good bargain (I can
    never pass a good bargain...), however there are numerous rumours and
    expectations that "LX2" and "TZ2" would come out with the corrected
    drawbacks of their predecessors (e.g. better sensitivity at high ISO
    for LX1 and manual control for TZ1), and the cameras will be selling
    like real hot cakes. I would be very sorry that I bought something else
    beforehand !!

    Panno Zhai, May 18, 2006
  8. You might be right about an "LX2"; that model has been out for a while,
    so it's reasonable to assume that there's a replacement in the works.
    The TZ1, on the other hand, has only been on the market for a couple of
    months (without checking, I'd like to say March); I can't imagine that
    Panasonic would obsolete it so quickly. I'd expect a 'TZ2' next winter
    (assuming, of course, that the current model sells well enough to
    warrant a sequel).

    Daniel Silevitch, May 18, 2006
  9. Panno Zhai

    Marvin Guest

    Panasonic has several similar cameras. I thought the LZ3
    fits my needs and wallet best. I found it as "used" at for $219.99. The only damage was said to be to
    the carton, and a 30-day return is allowed.
    Marvin, May 19, 2006
  10. Panno Zhai

    Panno Zhai Guest

    OK, so I went to the store and made some pictures with TZ1 on my memory
    card; the quality was good. I was pleased. I also made some pictures
    with LX1; the quality was similar. I tried manual focus, and I was
    disappointed to find out that the depth of field was large -- it was
    hard to focus even using their feature of emlraging the central part.
    I did also pictures in RAW format, and at home, using RawShooter
    Essentials for RAW conversion into TIFF, and removed the noise with
    Noise Ninja. I was pleased to discover that the processing with my own
    computer (rather than by the camera's processor) uncovered more details
    ! I was sold on the camera. This is what I want ! (LX1, that is). After
    the proper exposure andor RAW/noise processing, there is no noise. This
    is a good camera !

    So yesterday I went to the website -- they offered this
    camera at a great discount for AU$560 (US$400), and everywhere in
    Australia the camera was sold for the full price, that is AU$850
    (US$550). Today I checked ebay and their website -- this camera is
    withdrawn from both.

    I feel disappointed. I heard the rumours that Panasonic is withdrawing
    LX1 from some international markets; people are not sure where "LX2"
    will be released or not. I do not know what should I do; whether should
    I rush to ebay and buy this camera from other Hong Kong sellers (there
    is a great deal of competition between them, albeit othet HK sellers
    provide slighhtly worse conditions) because this camera will disappear
    at a discount price; or should I wait more as some sellers might give
    even more discount ???

    Panno Zhai, May 20, 2006
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