The Panasonic Lumix TZ20 updates the incredibly popular Panasonic DMC-TZ10. Now with a a 16x optical zoom, Full HD video and even a 3D mode. Just how does the TZ20 weigh up? The What Digital Camera Panasonic DMC-TZ20 review finds out...
Panasonic Lumix TZ20 review – Design
The Panasonic TZ20’s body shape is, much like any compact with such a large optical zoom, relatively chunky in terms of its width. Sitting at 219g in weight makes the Lumix TZ20 one of the heavier compact cameras on the market, although at just over a fifth of a kilo it’s certainly not going to break any backs and hardly adds a huge amount of bulk over the the likes of the Canon S95, for example. The weight is inherent given such a significant zoom range, as there aren’t that many compacts that can offer a 24-384mm equivalent in such a body size. However, due to the size of the lens when extended, the flash does sit further toward the grip side of the body, making it possible to block it with a finger on occasion.
Elsewhere the TZ20’s controls are well laid out. Playback and record can be toggled between via a small switch, rather than simply pressing the shutter release to begin taking images again. Activating the manual modes is achieved via a rather small, recessed button labeled Exposure. As confusing as this may be, especially when the Exposure does far more than purely access that particular element of the manual modes, it’s even more frustrating to have to press it each time you wish to adjust either shutter speed or aperture settings.
As the TZ20’s d-pad is brimming with secondary controls it’s fairly easy to accidentally alter the wrong settings, such as timed exposure settings rather than the aperture, but once you get to grips with where things are it’s fairly plain sailing from there on in. A function dial or better use of the touch screen could have been a better layout.
When the TZ20 is set to any of its automatic modes it’s perfectly straightforward to operate, and the touchscreen is useful when limited to focus-based tasks, but can become a little annoying for the more involved menu controls that are often too cumbersome to adjust with accuracy.