Panasonic DMC-FZ48 review

Does the latest Lumix super-zoom bridge live up to expectation?

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Panasonic fz48

The FZ48 isn't one of the best performers with noise levels at high sensitivities. Even at low sensitivities, images seem to contain artefacts and smudging around fine details, which is a little disappointing - but it is a bridge camera not an SLR.

These artefacts are only visible on very close inspection, and images at taken at sensitivities up to ISO 400 should be suitable for producing respectable 10 x 8-inch prints.

Raising the sensitivity to ISO 800 results in a marked increase in softening due to noise reduction, and many fine details are lost. ISO 1600 should be kept as a last resort, as coloured noise begins to affect images, and the noise reduction system starts to attack coarser details in an attempt to keep noise under control.

Panasonic fz48

Intelligent multiple, centre-weighted and spot metering options are available through either the main menu or quick menu. The FZ48's intelligent multiple metering option does a good job of producing balanced exposures in a wide range of conditions, only being completely fooled by very harshly backlit subjects. An exposure compensation range of plus or minus three stops should provide ample adjustment range for most scenarios.

The sensor shift stabilisation system employed in the FZ48 does an excellent job of taming camera movement, especially when shooting video and using the telephoto end of the zoom. It manages to keep the viewfinder image very steady indeed.

Panasonic fz48

The auto white balance performs well both indoors and outside, creating natural, neutral looking images in daylight and with only a mild colour cast under artificial lighting. Colours are generally rendered a little on the subdued side using default settings, so many may with to increase the colour saturation a little to lift their images.

Distortion is kept well under control, with a little barrelling creeping in at the wide-angle setting and a little pincushion distortion visible at the telephoto end. The level of distortion shouldn't pose too many issues for casual snappers, as it's remarkably well controlled for a lens covering such a wide zoom range.

Panasonic fz48

To aid creativity in-camera, eight creative control modes have been incorporated into the camera, which recreate a wide range of special effects including, a miniature effect, expressive, retro, high key, sepia, high dynamic range, pin hole and a film grain effect.

These can be a lot of fun to use, creating similar effects to the popular Instagram app that many now use on their mobile phones.

Tech Specs

Product TypeBridge Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Green CompliantYes
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Effective Camera Resolution12.1 Megapixel
USBYes
HDMIYes
PictBridgeYes
Product FamilyLumix
HD Movie ModeYes
3D Type3D
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card
Image StabilizationOptical
ColourBlack
Optical Zoom24x
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NamePanasonic
FeaturesFace Detection, Continuous Shooting Mode, Self-timer
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsMP4, AVCHD
Viewfinder TypeElectronic
Weight (Approximate)454 g
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityWEEE
Image Sensor Size1/2.33" (6.13 mm x 4.60 mm)
Maximum Image Resolution4000 x 3000
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height79.8 mm
Width120.3 mm
Depth91.9 mm
Focal Length4.50 mm to 108 mm
Image FormatsJPEG
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerPanasonic
Product ModelDMC-FZ48
Product NameLumix DMC-FZ48 Bridge Camera
Product LineLumix
Exposure Control
  • Program AE
  • Aperture Priority AE
  • Shutter Priority AE
  • Manual
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberDMC-FZ48EB-K
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.panasonic.co.uk
Marketing Information

The DMC-FZ48 features a 25mm ultra wide-angle 24x optical zoom F2.8-5.2 LEICA DC VARIO-ELMARIT lens (35mm camera equivalent: 25-600mm). The powerful 24x optical zoom can be used both in photo and video recording. The 25mm ultra wide-angle lens has about twice the shooting area as a standard 35mm lens. Thanks to the Intelligent Resolution technology, the 32x Intelligent Zoom is also available. In addition, the POWER O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) helps you clear, crisp, blur-free zooming shots.

Package Contents
  • DMC-FZ48 Bridge Camera
  • Battery Charger
  • Battery Pack
  • USB Cable
  • AC Cable
  • Shoulder Strap
  • CD-ROM
  • Lens Hood
  • Lens Cap
  • Lens Cap String
Limited Warranty1 Year