Panasonic TZ60/ZS40 review

Panasonic's flagship travel compact gets a 30x optical zoom and EVF

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The Panasonic TZ60 is the Swiss army knife of compact cameras, offering something for everyone, with features that will satisfy those taking anything from travel to family shots. The huge zoom capability coupled with the improved image stabilisation provides a good quality and usable focal range that works well when capturing landscapes, portraits and more.

Changes in design size and weight make the TZ60 feel like a more premium product than the TZ40. This is reinforced by the addition of the lens ring, which gives the camera a very traditional feel in use, although it's a shame that the touch screen has been removed.

AF speeds are improved when compared with the TZ40. However, in some, but not all instances there can be a bit of a delay between focus and shutter firing.

Connectivity options are straightforward and easy to use, with the ability to control your camera remotely from your Smartphone coming in as a definite bonus. Once you've got your images on your smartphone it's easy enough to share them, just unfortunately not through the app.

Most importantly of course, image quality is great. The TZ60 produces nice, vibrant images that look great directly from the camera, and with the option to capture raw files as well, this gives great creative control to those wanting a little more from their images.

We liked

30x optical zoom coupled with the excellent image stabilisation makes this a versatile travel compact that suits most situations. The electronic viewfinder is also a tremendous addition that makes it easier to shoot in the bright, sunny conditions that a travel camera will often be bought to capture.

We disliked

The lack of touch screen takes away the convenience of touch focus and shutter that featured on the TZ40.

Panasonic's TZ series started the trend for cameras aimed specifically at travellers and holidaymakers and it has been held in high regard. The compact camera market has been tough over recent years and manufacturers have put more effort into creating feature-rich models that compete with the TZ line.

However, Panasonic has thought carefully about how to improve on the TZ40 for the TZ60 and it is an excellent camera as a result. It has options that will appeal to novices as well as more experienced photographers, along with features that make it a versatile camera that's ideal for taking on trips either for business or pleasure.

The camera's huge zoom range provides a focal length range that many SLR photographers would wish for, making it ideal for shooting a wide range of subjects, from interiors to landscape and portraits to distant details. In addition, the viewfinder is a major bonus, making it easier to compose images in some situations.


Imaging Lab Manager

Ali Jennings is the imaging lab manager for Future Publishing's Photography portfolio. Using Imatest Master and DxO Analyser he produces the image quality tests for all new cameras and lenses review in TechRadar's cameras channel. Ali has been shooting digital since the early nineties and joined Future's Photography portfolio back in 2003.