Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 review

September 29, 2012

Overall Rating:


Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200



Price as Reviewed:


More than just an upgrade of its predecessor, the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 has a new 12.1-million-pixel sensor and a 24x lens that’s f/2.8 throughout the zoom range. Read the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 review

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 at a glance:

  • 12.1-million-pixel, 1/2.3in CMOS sensor
  • 24x, 25-600mm-equivalent f/2.8 lens
  • 1.312-million-dot-resolution EVF
  • Raw + JPEG shooting
  • 3in, 460,000-dot articulated LCD screen
  • Street price around £540

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 review – Introduction

Bridge cameras occupy a strange place in the camera market. Travel-zoom compacts now have extraordinary zoom lenses, manual shooting modes and sometimes raw shooting, while compact system cameras (CSCs) also offer a smaller, lighter and often cheaper alternative to a DSLR. To compete in what is a very competitive market, bridge cameras have become much more advanced.

To start with, the huge zoom lenses on bridge cameras seem to be constantly getting longer, but there have also been improvements made to the sensors used in the cameras, as well as the range of features on offer. The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 is no exception.

While on the surface the FZ200 appears to be much the same as its predecessor, the Lumix DMC-FZ150, advances have been made, most notably in the lens, which has a constant f/2.8 aperture throughout its entire 24x zoom focal length. This should make for a significant improvement in how the camera handles when shooting at its 600mm equivalent focal length.

I was particularly keen to see just how the lens would work in tandem with the improved 12.1-million-pixel CMOS sensor. It is the small, compact-camera-sized sensors in bridge cameras that make them capable of such large equivalent focal lengths in what are fairly compact bodies – yet these same sensors are also their Achilles heel, as the small size means the images they produce are noisier with a smaller dynamic range compared to a CSC or DSLR. That said, the main selling point of bridge cameras is the flexibility they offer over compacts, so does a little extra noise really matter?

  • White Balance: Auto, 5 presets, plus 2 custom and 1 manual
  • AF Assistance: Yes
  • Built-in Flash: Yes
  • Memory Card: SD, SDHC and SDXC, UHS-1 compliant
  • Viewfinder Type: EVF (1.312-million-dot equivalent)
  • LCD: 3in TFT with 460,000 dots
  • Output Size: 4000 x 3000 pixels
  • White Balance Bracket: No
  • Max Flash Sync: 1/4000sec with built-in flash
  • Sensor: 12.1-million-pixel High Sensitivity MOS sensor
  • Hotshoe: Yes
  • Exposure Modes: Program, aperture priority, shutter priority, manual
  • Weight: 537g (without battery or card/s)
  • AF array: 713 individually selectable points, or automatic selection
  • File Format: Raw + JPEG simultaneously, JPEG
  • Lens: Leica DC Vario-Elmarit 4.5-108mm 24x zoom(equivalent to 25-600mm on 35mm format)
  • Power: Rechargeable Li-Ion battery
  • Drive Mode: Max 12fps for 12 images, or 5.5fps with AF tracking. Up to 60fps at a reduced 2.5-million-pixel resolution
  • Shutter Speeds: 60-1/4000sec
  • Colour Space: Adobe RGB, sRGB
  • Dimensions: 125.2 x 86.6 x 110.2mm
  • Connectivity / Interface: USB 2.0 Hi-Speed, HDMI
  • Metering System: Intelligent multiple metering, centreweighted and spot
  • Compression: 2-stage JPEG
  • Exposure Comp: ±3EV in 1/3EV steps
  • RRP: £568.99
  • ISO: 100-6400in 0.3EV steps
  • DoF Preview: No
  • Focusing Modes: Normal, quick AF, macro, continuous or manual

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