Panasonic Lumix FZ45 review

Is that a monster zoom or are you just pleased to see me?

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The lens on the FZ45 is a newly designed Leica DC Vario Elmarit unit with a 25-600mm range (35mm equivalent).

The aperture range of f/2.8 to f/5.2, so this is a reasonably fast and bright lens in less than perfect lighting conditions. Of course, the downside of such as long built-in lens is the risk of camera shake, so to beat the jitters, the DMC-FZ45 includes an optical image stabilizer with three modes – more on this later.

The sensor is a CCD-type device with 14.1 effective pixels. Able to shoot both JPEG and RAW, the DMC-FZ45 delivers large and detailed files, which should be more than enough in terms of size and detail for the target audience.

Image processing is taken care of by the clunkily named Venus Engine HD 11, and the camera has an ISO range of 100-1600 (note this can be expanded but we'd stick to these levels).

Other interesting new features include face recognition and a rear control 'jog' dial for adjusting aperture and shutter speed.


The rear screen is better than the FZ38's too. It's three inches, compared to the older camera's 2.7 inches, and with 230,000 dots, it's nice and clear.

We certainly preferred using the rear LCD for composing images as although it can be struggle to use in bright sunlight, it's nicer to use than the rather cramped electronic viewfinder (it's a shame Panasonic hasn't taken the opportunity to improve the mediocre EVF, as it's basically the same you get with the DMC-FZ8).

The menus have been overhauled so they're easier to use and cover the extra options available with this camera; while reasonably intuitive, they still aren't as slick as a Canon or Nikon interface.

While the FZ45 is not a particularly bulky camera, it's not that compact either. Even with that monster zoom lens retracted, it's 120 x 80 x 92mm in size, though the camera is fairly light at 94 with battery. The lens extends by a full six centimetres, so don't stick it in your trouser pocket or you could get arrested for indecency!

Tech Specs

Product TypeBridge Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Green CompliantYes
Maximum Video Resolution1280 x 720
Effective Camera Resolution14.1 Megapixel
Wide AngleNo
Product FamilyLumix
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC)
Image StabilizationOptical
Optical Zoom24x
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NamePanasonic
FeaturesFace Detection, Aperture Priority, Continuous Shooting Mode, Manual Control
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsQuickTime Motion JPEG
Viewfinder TypeElectronic
Weight (Approximate)454 g
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityREACH
Image Sensor Size1/2.33" (6.13 mm x 4.60 mm)
Maximum Image Resolution4320 x 3240
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height79.8 mm
Width120.3 mm
Depth91.9 mm
Focal Length4.50 mm to 108 mm
Image FormatsJPEG
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
Product ModelDMC-FZ45
Product NameLumix DMC-FZ45 Bridge Camera
Product LineLumix
Exposure Control
  • Program AE
  • Aperture Priority AE
  • Shutter Priority AE
  • Manual
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberDMCFZ45EBK
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

The 14.1-megapixel DMC-FZ45 features a 25mm wide-angle 24x optical zoom f/2.8-5.2 LEICA DC VARIO-ELMARIT lens. The 25mm wide-angle lens has about twice the shooting area of the standard 35mm lens. The powerful 24x optical zoom can be used both in still and motion picture recording. The Extra Optical Zoom function uses the center part of the CCD to extend this 24x zoom ratio to powerful 50.6x zoom at a resolution of 3-megapixel or less in still picture recording.

Package Contents
  • Lumix DMC-FZ45 Bridge Camera
  • Battery Charger
  • Battery Pack
  • AV Cable
  • USB Cable
  • Shoulder Strap
  • CD-ROM
  • Lens Hood
  • Lens Cap
  • Lens Cap String
Limited Warranty1 Year