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Panasonic spruces up compact megazooms

Lumix DMC-TZ4 and TZ5 offer resolution and LCD-size bumps over the TZ3.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ5
Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ5
Panasonic

Panasonic follows up last year's compact megazoom Lumix DMC-TZ3 with two models. The DMC-TZ4 and DMC-TZ5 have similar feature sets, which include an optically stabilized 28mm-280mm 10x zoom lens and the next-generation Venus Engine IV image processing; Panasonic claims the latter provides improved noise reduction, faster performance, and more responsive stabilization.

The cameras differ mostly by resolution and LCD size. The TZ4 incorporates an 8.1-megapixel CCD and 2.5-inch display, while the TZ5 uses a 9.1-megapixel CCD and 3-inch display. The latter also supports 1280x720 30 frames-per-second movie capture.

Color choices for the $299.95 TZ4 are silver or black, while the $349.95 TZ5 will come in silver, black, and blue. Both cameras are scheduled to ship in March.