Panasonic Lumix ZS70 Review

Product Name: Panasonic Lumix ZS70

Product Description: The Panasonic Lumix ZS70 is a high-end point and shoot camera with 4K video capabilities, as well as a 20.3 MP sensor.

Offer price: $347.99

Availability: InStock

Summary

The Panasonic Lumix ZS70 delivers far better than we expected. It boasts phenomenal features, a great form factor, and exceptional build-quality for a fantastic price.

Pros

  • 30x optical zoom
  • Excellent image stabilization
  • Very compact and travel friendly
  • A touchscreen than can be tilted
  • 4k images and videos
  • Wi-Fi connectivity
  • Very affordable

Cons

  • Does not shoot 4k at 60fps
  • Very easy to mix up the record and the on/off button
  • The viewfinder is quite tiny
  • Features - 90%
    90%
  • Affordability - 92%
    92%
  • Quality - 80%
    80%
  • Accessories - 50%
    50%
Overall
78%
User Review
0 (0 votes)
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The Lumix ZS70 is considered an upgrade of the ZS60 and ZS1, which are, in many ways, the trendsetter for compact cameras. If you are not familiar with this newer model, it is also known as TZ90 outside of North America. For convenience sake, we will be sticking with the ZS70 in this review. 

There are some similarities between the ZS70 and the older versions, which we will discuss a bit later. But on closer inspection, there are significant differences and upgrades that have been added to the newest offering.

In this comprehensive review of the Panasonic Lumix ZS70, we take an in-depth look at its features. We also weigh in on its pros and cons.

Similarities between ZS70 and the older models, ZS1 and ZS60.

Before we proceed with the review of the Lumix ZS70, let’s look at the similar features between these models from Panasonic.

  • Same size body
  • An electronic viewfinder that is built-in with eye sensor
  • Optical zoom of 30x with a range of 24 to 720mm 
  • Records 4k videos as well as RAW files 
  • Built-in Wi-Fi and USB charging

Features of the Lumix ZS70. 

The optical assembly of the Lumix ZS70 is superior to the older versions. At 20 MP, the sensor in this one beats the 18 MP of its predecessors. This means taking realistic pictures is a breeze with this pocket camera. You will have no problem shooting professional quality images, even in dimly lit environments. 

The zoom range of 24 to 720 mm and the ability to shoot 8 MP still photography at 30fps makes this a powerful zoom travel camera. Lumix ZS70 comes with a hybrid image stabilizer with 5-axis. With this feature, you can take a distortion-free image even with a tilted feature. 

Another feature that is unique to the Lumix ZS70 is the touchscreen monitor that can be tilted. This is a fantastic feature for those who love taking selfies. The touchscreen can be tilted 180 degrees, in case you’re interested. 

You can use the touchscreen to focus, select soft functions, and meter exposure as well as network selection. 

Design.

Panasonic does not put much effort into the design of these compact cameras and let the performance do all the talking. And the Lumix ZS70 is no different. There is nothing fancy about the design. 

It’s a rectangle. However, you will find the handgrip on the front quite practical and sturdy. The device’s built-in flash is located just above the handgrip. The thumb rest at the back of the camera also comes in very handy when you need to capture shots with only one hand. 

Having a dimension of 112mm x 67mm 41mm, it is a very compact camera. However, the mechanism that holds the tilting monitor adds a bit of additional bulk to it, which makes it bulkier than the older versions. You will still be able to fit into your pockets unless it’s skinny jeans.

It weighs 332g with the battery and the card included. It is by no means heavy but it is about 50g more substantial than the older versions.

Another change you might notice in the Lumix ZS70 is the colorways, especially in the silver color. In the older versions, the camera had a silver top plate with a black body. But the Lumix ZS70 has a silver body, and the top plate is black. 

Controls and dials.

The controls and the dials of the Lumix ZS70 are pretty much the same as in the older models. The controls are on the rear panel with programmable panels taking up center stage. These include the Q menu, 4k photo modes, monitor or EVF toggle, and Post Focus. You will also find the display as well as the playback button in the rear.

You will find a number of dials on the top panel towards the left. These include Intelligent Auto, PASM exposure modes, Panorama, Custom position, Scene modes, and Creative video. 

A subtle change that you will notice in this camera is the disc-shaped on/off button. In the previous models, it was more of an oval shape. However, there is a small caveat. The round-shaped button makes it very similar to the video record button, so it is very easy to mix up the two. This is not a deal-breaker, though you need to keep this in mind. 

The Lumix ZS70 features a 1166k dot electronic viewfinder, which is found in many high-end cameras. It also has a button and an eye sensor that can be used to toggle between the screen and the viewfinder.

It is also a good time to mention that the viewfinder activates automatically when you put your eye to it. This is a great feature when you have to capture photographs in daylight when the sun is bright. It can also be quite cumbersome, however, when trying to shield the viewfinder from the light with your hand in bright circumstances.

Performance.

Now that you have all the information about the features, you might be curious to know how the Lumix ZS70 performs. It does not disappoint. 

This is undeniably a very powerful zoom camera. You can capture a wide field as easily as you can a close-up portrait. You might need a steady hand while zooming on a distant subject with the 720 focal lengths, but the stabilization works excellent. 

You will also love taking a picture when the ambient light is low. The camera takes 4k images and stores them in 8 MP so you will love taking selfies non-stop, or until the battery dies. 

Other features that you will love about the Lumix ZS70 are the Post Focus function and the Focus Stacking function. Using the former function, you can edit the pictures even after you have shot it. To sharpen the area of choice on the picture, touch the area while reviewing it, and save it.

The Focus Stacking function allows you to stack multiple pictures captured at different focus points and stack them. This brings more depth of field to the image, making them look like you captured them using different lenses. 

When it comes to recording videos, the Lumix ZS70 can record in 25fps to 60fps, which is pretty good. However, the inability to record 4k at 60fps is a bit of a letdown. But you can still record realistic footage using 4k at 30fps. 

You might also want to know that although the resolution is pretty good, recording at 4k makes you lose a little bit of field of view.

If you want to get creative with the footage, you can do it with the Lumix ZS70. You can shoot slow motion, make short clips of up to eight seconds and explore the live cropping feature as well. 

Additional information about the Lumix ZS70.

The Lumix ZS70 can be charged via a USB port. The ports for the battery, as well as the memory card, are located at the bottom of the camera. So while the camera is mounted on a tripod, you will not be able to access them.

The Wi-Fi feature on the Lumix ZS70 is among the best in its price category. You can transfer your files to other devices very effortlessly. Of course, if you choose to connect a smartphone or a tablet, you can remote control the camera’s gallery as well. 

If you plan to use the remote function quite frequently, consider downloading the Panasonic Image App. It will make file transfers and editing a lot easier. The image app is free for download on Play Store and works with all devices – Android and iOS. 

On delivery, the Lumix ZS70 package comes with a USB cable as well as the A/C adapter. You can also choose to get a hand strap for the camera, but it needs to be bought separately. 

Price of the Lumix ZS70.

The Lumix ZS70 is priced between $347.99 to $399.99, depending on the seller. However, considering all the features and the stellar performance, this is very reasonable pricing. 

What is the Lumix ZS70 best for?

The Panasonic Lumix ZS70 is a very compact camera that makes it very portable. But apart from its portability, it also has excellent features that make it a perfect travel companion. 

If you travel often and you also like to document everything in pictures, the Lumix ZS70 might just be your best digital companion.