Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ6 review: Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ6

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The Good 12x super-wideangle lens; high definition throughout the zoom range; excellent overall picture quality; superb build and finish.

The Bad Mode dial lacks positive click-stops; intelligent automation can get tiresome.

The Bottom Line The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ6 not only does more than you could possibly expect from any pocket-sized camera, it does it spectacularly well. Other cameras may be smaller, cheaper or offer more manual control, but, as a package, the TZ6 provides unparalleled practicality, versatility and quality

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8.8 Overall

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Panasonic's new Lumix DMC-TZ6 has got the lot, including 10.1 megapixels, a 25mm super-wideangle 12x zoom, image stabilisation and a smart metal body slim enough to fit into your back pocket. But, at around £240, is it worth the money?

Smart though the TZ6 is, £240 is pretty pricey for a compact these days. But it doesn't take long to figure out that this camera is something rather special. The build quality and finish really are top-notch and well up to Panasonic's usual high standards, with metal knobs and switches, and a clear, logical layout.

This test shot shows brilliant colours, excellent definition right into the corners of the frame, and no more distortion than the average 3x zoom, despite the lens's 12x range (click image to enlarge)

It's the lens that's the star, though. Superzooms usually suffer much more from optical aberrations than standard zooms, but the TZ6's lens is practically flawless. There's not much distortion, hardly any chromatic aberration, the detail is unusually sharp right into the corners of the frame, and it holds up well at the maximum zoom setting, when most superzooms' pictures begin to turn into mush.

What's more, although the TZ6 has 'only' 10.1 megapixels, whereas most of its rivals now have 12, it doesn't seem to matter. Our resolution test indicates that the TZ6 resolves an unusual amount of detail for a 10-megapixel camera and is just as good as a 12-megapixel one.

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