Which Lumix camera is best?
Panasonic is well-known globally for producing excellent electronics, and its cameras are no different. While it has several device families, Lumix quickly climbed to the top tiers of digital cameras over the last two decades.
The Lumix range covers most photographers’ abilities by combining affordable point-and-shoot models and powerful digital single-lens reflex cameras. If you’re after a camera packed with functions to deliver beautiful images, you can’t go wrong with the Panasonic Lumix FZ300.
What to know before you buy a Lumix camera
Panasonic’s Lumix range is compatible with the L-mount system, developed in partnership with lens makers Leica and Sigma. L-mount lenses are interchangeable between different camera models and manufacturers. This means you can use any lens on any L-mount camera without needing dedicated lenses or adapters.
Memory card capacity
As camera technology advances, the size and detail of photos become more significant. Where the first Lumix camera only had a four-megapixel sensor, today’s models are capable of shooting and recording in 4K resolution with 20-megapixel sensors. Of course, with all the added data in an image, you’ll need a high-capacity memory card. When looking at a Lumix camera, consider the memory card required for the specific model.
Beginners often look at the camera’s indicated megapixels to determine how good it is. While it’s somewhat correct to do so, it isn’t the only factor to consider. For example, the sensor size determines how much light can enter the device. On the other hand, the megapixels tell you how large the photo is at its native measurements. In addition, it indicates how large you can print the image before digital enlarging is necessary. In essence, the more megapixels a camera has, the larger you can print the photo without pixelation or distortion.
What to look for in a quality Lumix camera
Almost all cameras have an autofocus function to keep the images crisp and clear, but the ISO can vary wildly between models. The ISO measures how much light the sensor can take in when the shutter is open. Cameras with a higher ISO are better suited to shooting subjects at night or in low light conditions. It isn’t something that most photographers look for, but it can be incredibly disappointing when your device can’t accurately capture the scene.
Like the ISO, the shutter speed determines how fast the sensor can capture what’s in front of it. A higher shutter speed photographs objects in motion without blurring, such as action-packed sports events. A slower shutter speed is beneficial if you want to capture the movement of objects. For example, you need a slower shutter speed if you want a waterfall to look like silk. A good-quality Lumix camera will have a wide range of shutter speed settings.
A fully featured camera can capture amazing scenes, but there will always be accessories that can enhance your ability. Some Lumix cameras are compatible with various extra components to help you on your photographic journey. These can include tripod mounts, the ability to connect a flash to the hot shoe or adding an external microphone for videos.
How much you can expect to spend on a Lumix camera
The average price of a Lumix camera largely depends on the device’s capabilities and size. An excellent entry-level model costs $300-$350, while a model with more features can cost $400-$500.
Lumix camera FAQ
Can you charge the batteries through a Lumix camera?
A. All Lumix cameras come with rechargeable batteries and a dedicated charger. Unfortunately, even though you can connect the camera to your computer through a USB cable, it won’t charge the batteries. The only way to do so is through the supplied charger.
What’s the difference between ‘K’ and ‘S’ models?
A. You might have noticed that some models denote a “K” or “S” variant. The letters are to help you quickly identify the body’s color, with “K” signifying a black model, while “S” is silver.
What’s the best Lumix camera to buy?
Top Lumix camera
What you need to know: The FZ300 is a powerful digital camera in a body that’s slightly smaller than traditional DSLR models. It’s perfect for shooting outdoor activities, as it’s dustproof and can handle a few water splashes.
What you’ll love: The 12.1-megapixel sensor uses the built-in Venus engine to ensure that photos are crisp and distortion-free. In addition, it comes with a Leica DC Vario Elmar lens capable of 24x zoom and is perfect for low-light conditions. If you prefer to shoot with one hand, the 5-Axis Hybrid Optical Image Stabilizer Plus compensates for slight, unsteady movement.
What you should consider: While it can capture videos at a 4K resolution, it can only do so at 30 frames per second.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top Lumix camera for the money
What you need to know: An easy-to-use camera, the ZS70K is the perfect gadget for high-quality holiday snaps or days outdoors.
What you’ll love: If you enjoy printing photos to display in your home, then the 20.3-megapixel sensor is right for you. The compact camera has a built-in Leica DC Vario Elmar lens with 30x zoom and an optical image stabilizer. In addition, it has a 0.2-inch electronic viewfinder at the back and can record videos at a maximum resolution of 4K.
What you should consider: It has a fixed-lens system, so you can’t remove or add different lenses.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: The FZ80 is perfect for beginner photographers who want to move to the next level. The familiar button layout and handling make it easy to use, and it weighs just over 1 pound.
What you’ll love: The included DC Vario lens is capable of 60x zoom, while the 18.1-megapixel sensor is responsible for producing large-size photos. At the back, there’s a 3-inch touchscreen and a live viewfinder. You can capture 4K video at 30 frames per second through three unique shooting modes.
What you should consider: While it comes with a battery, the charging dock isn’t included. However, the FZ80 is one of the few Lumix cameras that can charge through a USB connection.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Charlie Fripp writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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