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Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 review




  • Recommended by TR

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Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 front
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 front
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 back
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 sides
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 top
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 battery
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 specs
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 test photo
  • Lumix DMC-TZ10 Point & Shoot Digital Camera - 12.1 Megapixel - 7.6 cm 3" Colour LCD - Black (12x Optical Zoom - 4xMicrophone)


Our Score:


User Score:


  • All-metal build
  • 12x zoom lens (25-300mm)
  • Versatile
  • Great handling
  • Manual controls


  • GPS drains battery
  • Image quality only average

Key Features

  • 12x zoom lens (25-300mm)
  • All-metal build
  • 12 megapixel sensor
  • HD video with stereo sound
  • Manufacturer: Panasonic
  • Review Price: £208.30

Just under a year ago I reviewed the Lumix DMC-TZ7, then the latest model in Panasonic's successful line of long-zoom compact travel cameras. As you can probably tell from the 65 comments, it has been a popular review, as was the Lumix DMC-FZ38). However, we could have a new contender for the most popular camera review, because today I'm taking a look at the TZ7's successor, the much-anticipated Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10.

The long-zoom compact market is, as I have remarked before, extremely competitive, and there are several very impressive new cameras launching within a few weeks of each other, such as the excellent Ricoh CX3 or the Canon SX210 IS. The TZ7 has been the camera to beat in this field for the past year, so Panasonic has gone all out to make sure that the TZ10 is loaded up with enough features to keep it at the top of its market sector for the rest of this year.

The TZ10 has a 14.5-megapixel multi-aspect CCD sensor with a maximum image size of 12 megapixels, a high quality 12x optical zoom f/3.3-f/4.9 Leica lens equivalent to 25-300mm, an extra-sharp 3in 460k monitor with a wide angle of view, 720p HD video recording with stereo audio, optional manual exposure and a built-in GPS receiver for automatic location recording, with a database of over half a million named locations and landmarks worldwide. An optional kitchen sink accessory is rumoured to be launching at the beginning of April.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ10 front

Externally at least the Lumix TZ10 is virtually identical to the TZ7. This is no bad thing because Panasonic got the ergonomics pretty much right with the previous model, and the few changes for the TZ10's design are only slight improvements. The strong all-metal body is exactly the same size and nearly the same shape, although the small handgrip is a different and slightly more comfortable shape and the controls on the top panel have been rearranged. The mode dial, which I criticised for being too loose, has been stiffened up and now turns with a firm click. The only outward signs of the changes within are the raised hump on the top panel that presumably houses the GPS satellite antenna, and a few extra notches on the mode dial. The rear panel also now has an extra button that enables adjustment of exposure parameters in the manual exposure modes.

mick / LUMIX

February 26, 2010, 4:10 pm

Cliff, not sure what you mean by "new" low ISO of 80 when the TZ7 also has ISO 80 ?, anyway, another interesting review.


February 26, 2010, 5:15 pm

A thorough review, well done. But I'm confused by your 'major concern' about battery life: the words major concern seem pretty strong for me, and 80 shots, is this not a massive flaw? Yet this concern, despite its gravity, seems brushed under the carpet in your review. It's almost as if you're secretly hoping that you received a bad battery, or that it's just not true, as I gather this site has normally been very pro-Panasonic. But 80 shots? Surely this is devastatingly poor performance. Could you please shed more light on this, I'm depply puzzled by the lack of gravity you assign to this alleged show stopper!


February 26, 2010, 6:55 pm

"The TZ10's image quality is, I must admit, slightly disappointing."

"I do have one very major concern about the TZ10, and that is battery duration."


Hans Gruber

February 26, 2010, 8:41 pm

The battery life of the TZ6 is also pretty abysmal and there was me hoping for a firmware update to fix this issue. I was also suspicious of the reason why it was never reviewed, with its higher pixel density and smaller sensor size in comparison to every other TZ model released thus far. The TZ10 may also exhibit poor design/manufacturing process? I hope this isn't true.


February 26, 2010, 9:18 pm

Still having a great time using my TZ5. Lasts about 300 shots.


February 26, 2010, 10:08 pm

The battery news is bad for those who want full-time GPS. I think, though, that I'd use it infrequently and have always carried a spare battery on those adventures.

OTOH - a full day of playing tourist would probably run through several batteries if I were using the TZ rather than my DSLR. I'm thinking of a boat trip, Westminster to Hampton Court, that provided wonderful shots of buildings, bridges, etc. that I cannot identify.

I'd be using batteries faster than I could recharge them. And turning the GPS on intermittently is a pain owing to the time it takes to re-acquire the birds. Maybe I'll skip the 10 in favor of the 8 and live with the smaller screen and motion JPEG.

Never mind. I like the LCD a lot. I'd probably get the 10 for the improved stabilization and manual controls and leave the GPS off mostly. That suggests waiting for 6-12 months for the price to drop. OK with me. My ZS-3/TZ-7 works fine, thank you.

Tony Walker

February 26, 2010, 11:35 pm

How on earth have Panny managed to screw up the image quality after getting it so right with the TZ7 (which I own)?

Battery on my TZ7 seems fine and barely drains when the camera is switched off for months.


February 27, 2010, 12:27 am

@johnbaker - Do you have any numbers from other cameras with build in GPS to compare with? Would be quite useful before making such a drastic conclusion.

I agree that 80 shots pretty much makes GPS a bit of a gimmick in this case though. It will at least still do around 300 shots with GPS turned off, but then you could just as well buy a camera without the integrated GPS.


February 27, 2010, 4:50 am

... you ask the question is there anything this camera does not have...? Yes... a viewfinder...


February 27, 2010, 5:47 pm

Quite so, Terry and for me a dealbreaker. I'll stick with my FZ18 for now.

Ray Hopper

February 28, 2010, 6:46 am

..and to repeat my comments on the CX3 review, please get busy Cliff on the other new travel compacts.

mick / LUMIX

February 28, 2010, 2:39 pm

Bertie, the FZ18 is excellent, I had one, but you cannot carry it everywhere in a pocket or in a trouser belt case. I have a TZ7 which I am very pleased with, would not change it for a TZ10.

Kevin Dyas

March 2, 2010, 3:36 am

Any indication as to what the 'optional' kitchen sink accessory launching at the beginning of April will be?


March 3, 2010, 2:55 pm

Dodger - Cliff, I like others were a bit disappointed with the image quality results for the TZ10 in your excellent test. I was planning to upgrade my Fuji S5700 perhaps for the TZ10.Not so sure now!!In your opinion, why is it that the TZ10 appears not to be a significant improvement over the TZ7? Was this a pre - production camera used in the test? Is it because we have reached the best quality available from this compact size sensor. Or are Panasonic simply over complcating things with all the new features.?

Cliff Smith

March 4, 2010, 9:37 pm

Ray Hopper - I'm hoping to get the new Canon SX210 and the Samsung WB1000 in very soon. Are there any others you'd like to see?

Kevin Dyas - The clue is in the date. What else happens at the beginning of April?

Dodger - No, this was a normal production camera.


March 7, 2010, 12:56 am

i am looking to buy a compact with high zoom capicity digital camera with possibility to buy a dedicated uderwater housing (for example i do not think the ricoh has one). is there anything better than the Panasonic tz10?


March 7, 2010, 9:31 am

hoping u get the new samsung WB2000.。。

Sendme More

March 9, 2010, 11:46 am

Cliff, thanks for the review -- any chance you'll be looking at the new Sony DSC-HX5V? It has an equally impressive feature list (if not more).

Gus Ghanem

March 11, 2010, 4:17 am

It just boggles the mind why camera makers are still increasing Pixel Density... I have short-listed a few models with "lower" Pixel Density, that I'd like to see tested: Casio EX-FH100, Sony HX5, Fuji F80, Samsung EX1/TL500... Thanks.

Ray Hopper

March 12, 2010, 5:14 am

Chris - my list of travel compacts is exactly the same as Gus's, plus the Samsung TL350

Eric Landry

March 12, 2010, 7:54 pm

Could you please tell me the time it takes from a totally off camera to a geotagged picture? I'm curious to know approximately how much time it takes to acquire GPS signal. Am I looking at under 10 seconds or over a minute? Thanks for the review!


March 12, 2010, 8:00 pm

@Eric Landry: So long as it's turned on (via a dedicated switch), the GPS is on permanently, even when the camera is otherwise turned off. As such you should get a lock straight away and it's just a case of waiting for the camera to boot up and take the picture. The GPS does drain the battery, though, so you might well want to turn it off. In which case, I don't know how long it might take.


March 12, 2010, 8:26 pm

is it confirmed that the samsung WB2000 will have an underwater housing?


March 15, 2010, 6:15 pm

Cliff, I own a TZ7 and I can use Scenes & optical zoom during vedeo recording. I'm afraid you were wrong about that in the review.


March 18, 2010, 4:36 pm

I don't particularly want a GPS in my camera, nor do I care about 2 extra megapixels... Would I be better off buying a TZ7 instead, since it is £100 cheaper..? Or are there other improvements that makes the TZ10 worth it..?

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