Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ35 Review
The Panasonic Lumix-FZ35 is the replacement of the award-winning FZ28 model in the super-zoom digital camera category. While Panasonic retained a lot of features from the older model, it did not stop them from improving some of its technical aspects. The FZ35 uses the same Leica DC Vario-Elmarit-branded 18x optical zoom lens, with a 27-486mm range; but it now has a 12-megapixel resolution. The image stabilization system has also been upgraded to the new POWER O.I.S. from the MEGA O.I.S., doubling its stabilizing power.
The Panasonic DMC FZ35 looks like an SLR. It has an electronic viewfinder, as well as, an LCD display. The EVF is .20 inches and yields 100% field of view. When you try the viewfinder, you will notice that there is no rubber cup around, which makes it less comfortable compared to other cameras in this category. The camera uses a 2.7-inch LCD display with a similar 100% coverage like the FZ28. Looking at the camera?s face, you may notice the large lens hood, which makes it look bulky and the absence of a hot shoe. Surprisingly, this model is the lightest and least bulky in its category at only 367 grams and 118 x 76 x 89 millimeters.
The buttons are well placed and the markings are pretty clear. There is an exclusive movie shutter button, allowing you to start shooting movies anytime. The camera uses a power switch that is easier to find than the conventional power buttons. The camera?s mode dial is large, yet can be conveniently turned with just your thumb from the shooting position.
There are a lot of shooting modes: standard Program, Manual, Aperture priority, shutter priority, pre-set scene modes, like sports, portrait, etc., and Intelligent Auto. Intelligent Auto will be able to detect the right scene mode in any given situation, be it Portrait, Macro, Scenery, Night Scenery or Portrait, and Baby scene modes. This mode also includes Intelligent Exposure that increase exposure in underexposed areas of an image.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ35 has face recognition feature that will remember up to 6 faces and prioritizes focus and exposure should these faces appear in your future shots. The SCN mode in the dial will give you unique choices like Party, pet, aerial photo, film grain, and many more. It does not stop there; the FZ35 also has modes for your recorded movies. You will be able to control the depth of field, as well as, reduce the noise in video recording by the Wind Cut function.
For movies, you can have a choice between two formats: Motion JPEG or AVCHD. The FZ35 records motion JPEG movies at 30 frames per second. AVCHD, which stands for Advances Video Codec High Definition, is a video format co-created by Panasonic and Sony. This format has less image noise and requires less memory than the Motion JPEG. The new variant, AVCHD Lite has a video resolution of 1280 x 720p. The camera can record AVCHD at 30 fps. Motion JPEG is the better format for sharing and uploading; while, AVCHD is perfect for playing back videos in an HDTV. Stereo sound can also be recorded via new built-in stereo microphone. You can also use the zoom lens while recording.
The Panasonic FZ35 gives you many options in your still images. Aspect ratios can range from 16:9, 4:3, and 3:2. The camera also captures in RAW format. It will take just about 2 seconds to save a RAW file in one shot.
The camera has Intelligent ISO, which automatically adjusts ISO sensitivity to reduce blurring. The ISO sensitivity of the FZ35 ranges from 100 to 1600 that can be increased to a maximum of 6400 in the high sensitivity mode.
If you are worried about camera shake, you can activate the new POWER O.I.S. in the stabilizer option in the main menu. It has 3 modes: Auto, Mode 1, which makes the O.I.S. activate time, and Mode 2, which only uses the POWER O.I.S. when you press the shutter button.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ35 takes pride on its speed. Start-up time has improved to 1.2 seconds, which is 20% faster than the camera before it. Improvements in the hardware and software doubled the speed of the A-F. The Venus Engine HD boosts the processing capability of the camera, thereby enhancing its operating speed. Shooting speed is the best in its class and the camera also exhibited good times in shutter lag measurements.
Battery life can last up to 470 shots, which is better than average in the ultra-zoom category.
The image quality is very good. The images came in full detail and color in ISOs below 400. Some noise appears starting at ISO 400, but very minimal. At higher ISOs, there is a noticeable loss of detail, but still gave decent small prints. The camera performs well at night, with a maximum shutter speed of 60 seconds. Just like the other cameras in the same group, images may have JPEG compression artifacts.
- 12.1 Megapixels
- 18x, 27-486mm zoom lens
- IS0 Sensitivity: 80 up to 6,400
- Electronic optical viewfinder
- 2.7 inch LCD monitor
- Power 0.I.S.
- Face Detection
- Intelligent Auto Scene Selector
- HD movie recording with stereo sound
- Light and less bulky
- Power switch
- Much improved Optical Stabilization
- AF and Start-up Speed
- RAW file support
- HDMI output
- Numerous modes to choose from
- Could use a hot shoe
- No eye cap for the viewfinder
- Zoom could have been increased
The Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ35 camera is a versatile super-zoom hybrid digital camera. This is highly recommended as a transition towards Digital SLR cameras. One can fully enjoy the flexibility of being able to take marvelous close-up shoots and superb landscape photos without changing lenses. The camera can also take excellent HD videos with crisp sound, making it a wonderful hybrid camera. Panasonic also added cool new features that justified the upgrade from the FZ28. This digital camera can be a very good and well-balanced vacation camera.
Rating: 4.3 out of 5
Where to Buy It:
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Prices last updated on: Tue, 28 Mar 2017 10:44:42 PDT