Digital Cameras

Panasonic DMC-TZ40: Review

Panasonic DMC-TZ40 is a compact 18 mega pixel with cutting-edge technological equipment: touchscreen, Wi-Fi, GPS, compass, electronic horizon and NFC. In the field of compact cameras “premium”, Panasonic releases for years now tools of great quality, and now continues the tradition with the new DMC-TZ40, which, with its price and the price its impressive technical equipment, is aimed at those who want to something more than a simple tool to take pictures from social networks, but still prefers dimensions to enhance portability.

The data sheet of the Panasonic DMC-TZ40 is, without mincing words, impressive in such a small device are almost everything that you could want from a “gadget” modern. Among touch screen, Wi-Fi, integrated GPS, compass, electronic horizon and even NFC (Near Field Communication), this camera is definitely able to satisfy even the most demanding lovers of technology.

From the point of view purely photographic, the budget is also “exaggerated”, with a full 18-megapixel sensor and a 20x zoom lens that extends from 24mm wide-angle to 480 mm telephoto position (35mm format equivalent). If in terms of focal length really could not ask for more, the situation was less rosy in terms of partitions: the maximum aperture is f/3.3 fact ef/6.4 respectively, which means that we are in front of a goal rather “closed”, with all the consequences of the case (use of longer shutter speeds or higher ISO).

Panasonic DMC-TZ40: Design

This string of impressive specifications finds space inside a camera very small, and especially light: with SD card and battery inserted, the Panasonic DMC-TZ40 weighs only 198 grams. The build quality is good, but not exceptional: you do not have the impression that some slight accidental bump can damage the camera, but the materials used and the general feeling perhaps not fully reflects the price. Especially, the mode dial, the battery cover and the function keys return a feedback rather “plasticky”, with the latter which. Moreover, are much smaller than the space available.

Ergonomics also be improved: the front is inserted a generous grip that helps make the firm grip, but on the rear, we find only a small area dotted embossed on which to rest your thumb.

Panasonic DMC-TZ40 - Rear
Panasonic DMC-TZ40 – Rear

The layout of the controls is satisfactory and all transactions are carried out with relative ease, thanks to the menu well-designed and distributed. Good also the screen 3″ LCD, 920,000 pixels, pretty nice in terms of rendering of colors and contrasts and certainly well defined. The model we tested the Panasonic DMC-TZ40 has a green pixel fixed and especially a slight loss of light from the left side of the panel, visible in very dark scenes, but we believe it is a defect of the test pattern.

As already mentioned, we are in the presence of a touch panel: the real usefulness of this feature is a matter of personal preference (we remain tied to the physical controls, usually more manageable), but anyone wishing to focus and shoot by tapping the screen you will find valuable for These and other features of the TZ40.

A choice that we do not share is not to include within the scope of a traditional charger, the charging is done (via USB cable) directly to the battery inside the camera. It is a classical solution for the field of smartphones, but in photography involves some limitations, such as the inability to continue to use the camera with a spare battery while exhausted is left in charge.

Moreover, the battery management is a factor of no less importance in this camera: given the impressive technological equipment, when all functions are active (GPS, stabilizer, etc..), The durations of a charge are only about one medium- low, ie about 200-250 shots.

Panasonic DMC-TZ40: Performance and Image Quality

Also from the point of view of performance, in terms of rapidity and accuracy of use, the Panasonic DMC-TZ40 does not disappoint. The auto focus, in its various forms, it is a fast and accurate tool in its class, while the ability to achieve burst speeds up to 5 fps with continuous AF or even 60 fps with AF single (and resolution limited to 2, 5 mega pixel) is really impressive, combined with the 480 mm telephoto, will surely give good satisfaction of the field of sports photography, as long as you are in optimal lighting conditions. Very good is the optical image stabilizer, which in our testing has proven effective in reducing the vibrations up to allow you to make hand-held shots at times even moderately slow to the focal length of 480mm full.

Really interesting also in the field of macro capabilities: the lens will very close to the element fire front (only 3cm wide position) and allow you to capture enlargements of some impact. Also positive situation at the video front: with the Panasonic DMC-TZ40 can record movies in Full HD resolution and 50 fps in AVCHD format, or 25 fps in MP4 format. Curiously, the technical officer reports can also capture video at 100 and 200 fps (VGA resolution), but we are not able to find in the menus, even with the help of manual’s paper and digital.

Recorded movies are still of excellent quality, rich in detail and well contrasted, and the zoom operation is very quiet and smooth, in a joint with the effectiveness of the optical Image Stabilizer makes it possible to indulge in remote shooting really fun. Very interesting, and quite effective, it is also the function that uses the electronic level to automatically correct the inclination of the video footage. It is in the field of simple photographs TZ40 complaint that the most compact of its nature.

Panasonic DMC-TZ40 - Top
Panasonic DMC-TZ40 – Top

The sensor of small size (1/2.3″) behaves reasonably in terms of color reproduction, also helped by a white balance generally accurate, but suffers when capturing or highly contrasted images in poor light. In the first case, the detail in the mid tones is patently kneaded, and the dynamic range is limited, while in the second, it is possible to detect a strong presence of digital noise, which is still present and visible even to the base value of ISO 100 and, which increases exponentially when it is over 800, requiring an increasingly stronger noise reduction (resulting in loss of detail).

The result is that the 18-megapixel Panasonic DMC-TZ40 can really be exploited in full size only in absolutely perfect lighting conditions, a characteristic shared by the majority of the compact, which is of little relevance to the context of daily use: for viewing on monitor and printing in standard sizes (up to 20 × 30 cm), you really do not need 18 MP. This does not mean that we would have preferred to see implemented a sensor more balanced in terms of mega pixels and better performance in difficult conditions. The images captured by the TZ40 are good overall and certainly in line with what can be achieved with other compact cars of the same band.


Overall, the Panasonic DMC-TZ40 is a very good Super Zoom, which does not shine, particularly for image quality, but it compensates with technological equipment or almost unparalleled (for a device of this range) enclosed in a very compact form factor and appealing. If that’s what you look for in a modern camera, and if you are not bothered by the high ISO performance only discrete and the relative aperture for the lens, we have no reason to advise against the purchase.

Where to Buy Panasonic DMC-TZ40

Panasonic Lumix digital camera 20x optical with GPS DMC-TZ40 Black - International Version (No Warranty)
  • Japanese language only
  • Height: 5.89, Width: 10.83, Depth: 2.77cm
  • Weight: 198g, effective pixels: 18.1 million pixels
  • Optical zoom: 20 times (up to 40 times)
  • EX optical zoom (EZ):47.8 times the maximum, Total number of pixels: 18.9...

PROS : Excellent technological equipment, 20x zoom, Stabilizer effective.

CONS : Objective little bright, Visible noise even at ISO base, Build quality improved.

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