Panasonic Debuts 4K-Capable Point-and-Shoot Cameras at CES

Posted by at 8:57 am on January 6, 2016

Panasonic has just introduced two new cameras featuring 4K video capabilities, versatile zoom lenses, high-sensitivity MOS sensors and, of course, sleek form factors to take the burden out of traveling with a well-spec’d camera. Differentiated by sensor size and zoom magnification, the two cameras share a suite of similarities, leaving you to choose between a longer-reaching lens or a larger image sensor.

Dubbed the “premium compact travel camera” by Panasonic, the Lumix DMC-ZS100 is distinctly characterized by its large 1-inch 20.1MP High Sensitivity MOS sensor and bright 10x optical zoom lens. The image sensor is complemented by a redeveloped Venus Engine image processor that, in addition to benefitting image quality, recording either raw or JPEG files, reducing noise, and affording a top expanded sensitivity of ISO 25600, avails a versatile set of stills and video-recording capabilities. Support for 4K, 3840 x 2160 video in either 24p or 30p is available, along with a range of HD and SD recording options. In addition to just video, 4K recording is also beneficial to still photographers with 4K Photo modes, which let you shoot 8MP stills at 30 fps, and Post Focus, which combines with the Light Speed AF system and Depth from Defocus (DFD) technology to gradually shift the point of focus during 30 fps burst shooting to let you select the final image with best focus after shooting.

The second key aspect to why the ZS100 is an ideal travel companion is its wide-to-tele 10x Leica DC Vario-Elmarit zoom lens, which provides a 25-250mm equivalent focal-length range and an f/2.8-5.9 maximum aperture range. This long-reaching optic is supported by 5-axis Hybrid O.I.S., which compensates for a variety of types of camera movement to enable sharper stills and blur-free video recording. A Level Shot function is also a benefit of the image stabilization system, and automatically detects and corrects camera tilt to ensure level horizons and plumb verticals in your images.

Rounding out the ZS100’s feature set, its compact body design incorporates an electronic viewfinder, with 1, 166k-dot resolution, and a rear 3.0″ 1.04m-dot touchscreen LCD for viewing versatility. Built-in Wi-Fi is also featured for wirelessly sharing images to a linked mobile device, or for remotely controlling the camera from a smartphone or tablet using the Panasonic Image app.

DMC ZX100

The Lumix DMC-ZS100 is available in black or silver.

The little brother to the ZS100, the Lumix DMC-ZS60 shares many of the same imaging assets as the former; however, it has the distinction of a significantly longer zoom lens. Tripling the reach, the ZS60 features a 30x Leica DC Vario-Elmarit lens that offers a 24-720mm equivalent focal length range, covering wide-angle to super telephoto perspectives. 5-Axis Hybrid O.I.S. is featured again, and compensates for a variety of camera movements to realize sharper, blur-free images when working in difficult lighting conditions or at the longer end of the zoom range.

In regard to imaging, the ZS60 houses an 18.1MP 1/2.3″ High Sensitivity MOS sensor, which works in concert with the Venus Engine image processor to provide clean image quality with reduced noise and a sensitivity to an expanded ISO 6400. This sensor-and-processor combination also affords a top continuous shooting rate of 40 fps with an electronic shutter, 10 fps with a mechanical shutter, or 5 fps with continuous autofocus. And, like the ZS100, 4K 3840 x 2160 recording is supported at 30p, and can also be used for stills via the 4K Photo modes for making 8MP stills at 30 fps. Post Focus is supported with this model, too, to permit selecting an image with the desired point of focus from a group of stills with differing focus points.

Also sporting a similar body shape and form factor as the ZS100, the ZS60 is marginally slimmer and about an ounce lighter in weight. It houses the same 3.0″ 1.04m-dot touch-screen LCD and electronic viewfinder, and also features built-in Wi-Fi for wireless camera control and image sharing with a mobile device.

DMC ZS60

The Lumix DMC-ZS60 is available in black or silver.

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