Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 Digital Camera

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 Digital Camera, is one of the most popular cameras in its class for its price, functions, image delivery and quality featuring a 20x super zoom Leica lens that ranges from an ultra wide-angle 24mm (35mm equivalent) to an extremely long 480mm (35mm equivalent) telephoto lens. There’s a high resolution 14.1MP MOS sensor, full 1920 x 1080 60p high definition video with Dolby stereo sound, and focusing as fast as 0.1 second.

POWER O.I.S. image stabilization helps keep your images sharp and clear, even shooting in dim light, taking extreme close-up macro shots, or using the longest telephoto setting. There’s also an Active Mode stabilization that helps to keep your videos from jumping around when you’re moving while shooting. The Venus Engine processor and Intelligent Noise Reduction System deliver superb image quality. A host of creative functions and modes like Intelligent HDR (High Dynamic Range), Panorama Shot, burst shooting of 10 frames per second at full 14.1MP resolution, and multiple color modes will help you make every photo and every video you create an inspiration.

There’s also built-in GPS for geo-tagging your pictures, and displaying the location from any of the more than 1,000,000 landmarks included. Intelligent ISO control/motion detection, AF tracking for moving subjects, and touch-screen operation of focus, exposure, AF tracking, zoom, and manual operation make this one of the easiest cameras to use available today. A 3D photo mode lets you explore the 3D world with your photos and the Handheld Night Shot mode allows you to take gorgeous photos at night without a tripod. The large, bright 3″ 460K-dot LCD makes composing and viewing your images a treat.

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 Digital Camera

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 Digital Camera

All of this comes in a compact package that measures just 4.1 x 2.3 x 1.1″ and weighs only 6.49 oz.

Lens Performance

Powerful 20x Optical Zoom:  The DMC-ZS20’s powerful 20x optical zoom (35mm camera equivalent: 24-480mm; 28-560mm in 35mm equiv. in video recording) draws your subjects right up close, and lets you freely capture decisive sports scenes, along with the natural expressions of people and animals, and details that you can’t see with the naked eye.In addition, this single camera lets you record 20x zoom in video recording.

40x Intelligent Zoom:  The Intelligent Zoom is an extensive zoom function using digital zoom, however, you can even draw the subject 2x closer than the original optical zoom with minimum deterioration of image quality thanks to the Intelligent Resolution technology. This means the 20x optical can virtually extend to 40x equivalent.

24mm Ultra Wide-angle Lens:  The 24mm ultra wide-angle lens – rare on a compact camera – gives you a wider range of composition possibilities with approx. 213% larger viewing space compared to that of a 35mm lens. The high-quality Leica DC lens minimizes distortion at the wide end.

Leica DC Vario-Elmar Lens:  Newly developed Leica DC lens system that achieves both high image quality and small size is redesigned to further extend its powerful zoom to 20x (35mm camera equivalent: 24-480mm). Comprising 12 elements in 10 groups including 3 aspherical lenses with 6 aspherical surfaces and 2 ED lenses, adoption of ultra thin lens for its new structure optical system makes the unit’s overall length short to fit in the slim body despite its versatile zoom range from 24mm ultra wide-angle to 20x telephoto.

Nano Surface Coating:  The Panasonic’s black box technology Nano Surface Coating boasts extremely low reflectance ratio and it is applied to DMC-ZS20 for exceptional optical performance with stunning clarity by minimizing flaring and ghosts.

POWER O.I.S:  The POWER O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) suppresses the low-frequency vibration hand-shake component, which is physically generated when pressing the shutter button or when shooting at night with a slow shutter speed.The POWER O.I.S. also works for powerful zoom shots, which are especially susceptible to hand-shake in a compact camera. Active mode is effective for video recording.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 Colors

Shooting Functions

Creative Control / Creative Retouch:  You can add different effects by applying one of the filters both in the recording mode (Creative Control) and the playback mode (Creative Retouch). Includes modes such as Expressive, Low Key, Retro, High Dynamic, Soft Focus, Sepia, Toy Effect, High Key, Dynamic Monochrome, and Miniature Effect.

Panorama Shot:  The Panorama Shot Mode makes it is possible to shoot a 360-degree horizontal / vertical panoramic image with consequent shots taken by overlaying the previous picture.

Auto Retouch:  The Auto Retouch function adjusts contrast and brightness to give different impression to the photo with just a press of a button. Appropriate retouch is automatically applied depending on the image – if the image was shot too dark, it can be made clear and bright with this function.

Intelligent Handheld Night Shot:  The Intelligent Handheld Night Shot in the iA Mode facilitates sharp, beautiful photos at night by multi-layering the images automatically shot consecutively. Bright, glamorous night scenery can be recorded without using a tripod. The Handheld Night Shot Mode is also available in the Scene Mode.

3D Photo Mode:  The 3D Photo Mode produces a 3D image in the camera. The image-processing method records beautiful images with less distortion or visible image links. 20 panning shots are taken and the camera selects the two most suitable images – one for the right eye and one for the left eye – to synthesize a 3D composite.


0.1 Sec Light Speed AF:  The DMC-ZS20 boasts the approx. 0.1 second of Light Speed AF that helps to catch even the most fleeting photo opportunity. You can quickly focus on moving subjects, such as when you’re shooting sports or animals.

10 fps With 14.1MP Full Resolution:  The newly developed MOS sensor lets the DMC-ZS20 shoot 10 fps in 14MP full resolution (max. 10 images) with mechanical shutter. You can take a series of shots, then choose the ones you like the best.

5 fps / 2 fps With AF Tracking:  You can snap off consecutive shots at approx. 5 fps or 2 fps with AF Tracking (max. 100 images).

60 fps in 3.5MP Resolution:  Even higher-speed burst shooting is possible when the electronic shutter and a lower resolution are used.

Intelligent Burst Mode:  The Intelligent Burst Shooting automatically sets the frame rate of burst shooting according to the subject’s movement.

Touch AF Tracking:  Once the AF subject is selected by touch control, it continues to track the subject even if it moves until you press the shutter. When you’re taking images of active children, pets, sports scenes or any other moving subjects, this function eliminates the need to press the shutter button halfway down repeatedly to readjust the focus. Quick AF and 23-Area AF are also featured.

Image Quality

14.1MP MOS Sensor:  The 14.1MP High Sensitivity MOS sensor is newly developed for the DMC-ZS20 for even higher image quality. This boasts better S/N ratio compared with the 14.1MP MOS sensor in the DMC-ZS10. Together with the performance of the Venus Engine, the quality of an image shot in low-light situations is dramatically improved, reducing the noise to 1/2 level.

Venus Engine:  The DMC-ZS20’s Venus Engine processes large amounts of progressive full HD data at high speed. At the same time, the multi-task image-processing engine produces a super-fast response time.

Intelligent Noise Reduction System:  The excellent S/N ratio of the MOS sensor and the Intelligent Noise Reduction system in the Venus Engine give both photos and videos shot at any sensitivity from low to high outstanding clarity.

Panasonic Intelligent Noice Reduction

Multi-Process Noise Reduction System:  Newly developed Multi-Process Noise Reduction applies optimum noise reduction according to the brightness of the part of the image. Images recorded in low-lit situations are now dramatically clear.

Intelligent HDR:  The DMC-ZS20 integrates Intelligent HDR (High Dynamic Range) in the iA Mode. Several still pictures consecutively shot at different exposure levels are overlaid to produce a single composite picture with greatly improved contrast. The HDR Mode is also available in the Scene Mode.

Intelligent Resolution Technology:  Apart from the uniform enhancement of sharpness, Intelligent Resolution precisely performs signal processing pixel by pixel in the most effective way according to the area. As a result, images are naturally clear and crisp.

iA (Intelligent Auto) Mode:  In the iA (Intelligent Auto) Mode, the camera does all the work, leaving you free to compose shots and capture moments in both photo and video recording. The Intelligent Resolution technology, 40x Intelligent Zoom and Intelligent Burst are always activated in the iA Mode.

Shake Detection -POWER O.I.S:  Gyrosensors detect hand-shaking and the O.I.S. lens shifts to compensate, helping prevent blurring caused by hand-shaking.

Motion Deblur:  The Motion Deblur Mode judges the appropriate shutter speed and suppresses motion blur. The shutter speed rises as high as possible activating the high-sensitivity recording by pixel mixed readout method.

Motion Detection–Intelligent ISO Control:  The Intelligent ISO Control function detects subject movement and automatically adjusts the ISO setting and shutter speed to best suit the movement and light conditions.

Face Recognition:  The Face Recognition function remembers faces that have been registered in the camera and provides the faces with optimal focus and exposure.

Face Detection–Face Detection AF/AE:  The Face Detection function detects faces anywhere in the frame and automatically chooses the optimal focus and exposure. The Face Detection also features the Digital Red-eye Correction (Red-eye Removal) in photo recording.

Subject Detection–AF Tracking:  Once you focus on your subject, the AF Tracking automatically and continuously tracks it and keeps it in focus and proper exposure.

Scene Detection–Intelligent Scene Selector:  The Intelligent Scene Selector senses the ambient conditions and automatically selects a Scene Mode: Photo (Scenery, Portrait, Macro, Night Portrait*6, Night Scenery, Sunset or Handheld Night Shot), Video (Scenery, Portrait, Macro or Low Light).

Happy Mode:  The Happy Mode optimizes color, saturation and brightness to make images more vivid and true to the color of the scene you remember.

Light Detection–Intelligent Exposure:  The Intelligent Exposure corrects the brightness in parts of the image that are too dark due to insufficient lighting, backlighting or use of the flash. This produces natural images that are closer to the way they actually look to the human eyes.

Intelligent HDR (High Dynamic Range):  Several still pictures consecutively shot at different exposure levels are overlaid to produce a single composite picture without whiteout (over-exposure) or blackout (under-exposure).

Panasonic Intelligent HDR

Easy Manual Control / Custom Mode:  The DMC-ZS20 provides easy-to-use manual controls. A total of 4 custom setting patterns can also be memorized to the camera (1 on C1 and 3 on C2).

Manual Exposure Mode:  You can set both the aperture and shutter speed. The Manual Exposure Assist function shows how much your setting differs from the setting the camera considers optimal. This serves as a convenient guide for anyone using the Manual Exposure Mode.

Aperture-Priority Mode:  The Aperture-Priority mode lets you open the aperture up wide for impressive portraits and flowers with softly focused backgrounds.

Shutter-Priority Mode:  Fast shutter speeds can be used to freeze moving subjects, and slow shutter speeds can create a motion blur that exaggerates the feeling of movement.

White Balance:  Auto / Daylight / Cloudy / Shade / Incandescent / White Set / White Balance Adjustment

3.0″, 460K-Dot Smart Touch-screen:  The large 3.0″ LCD lets you operate the auto focus and shutter release at the same time with just a touch. When playing back, you can drag the image across the screen with a finger to browse a collection of photos, or scroll the map to play geo-tagged images.

AC / USB Battery Charging:  The DMC-ZS20 offers USB power charging in addition to the conventional AC power supply. The energy-saving Venus Engine and the efficient, rechargeable lithium-ion battery let you take approx. 260 shots on a single battery charge.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 Digital Camera

Additional Functions

Built-In Memory, Focus Range Display, Travel Date Setting, Copy, Guide Line, Zoom Resume, Real-Time Histogram, Minimum Shutter Speed, and World Time Setting.

1920 x 1080 60p (NTSC) Full HD Video in AVCHD Progressive Format:  The DMC-ZS20 can record high-resolution full HD 1,920 x 1,080 60p (NTSC) videos in AVCHD Progressive (MPEG-4 / H.264) format. Upgrading the full HD recording capability from interlaced to progressive, subjects with fast motion or fine details are reproduced even more clearly. A special, dedicated button lets you instantly start recording videos while shooting photos without having to make any extra settings. The DMC-ZS20 can also record full HD 1,920 x 1,080 30p (NTSC) videos in MP4 format. This format is suitable for editing videos on a computer or uploading those to websites.

Panasonic AVCHD Progressive

60p NTSC Progressive Recording:  1080/60p progressive recording conveys about twice the information of 1080i (interlace) recording. Whereas interlacing requires two images to produce a complete picture, the progressive method records a single image as a complete picture. It creates intricate detail and silky smooth motion. Even when subjects move quickly, afterimages are minimized to create more natural images.

Panasonic 1080:60p Progressive

POWER O.I.S. With Active Mode:  The Active Mode effectively suppresses blur in video recording especially at wide angle while walking or playing with your children. In addition, it’s an optical system so there’s no image degradation. It’s especially good for active video shooting.

High Quality Sound:  Incorporating a stereo zoom microphone, the videos also come with the high-quality stereo sound of Dolby Digital Stereo Creator, to offer highly realistic sound to the video. Mechanical noise caused by a zooming operation is suppressed to improve the clearness.

20x Optical Zoom in Video Recording:  The powerful 20x optical zoom with 2-step zoom function is available in video recording.

Auto Wind Cut Function:  The Auto Wind Cut function is also available to block out most of the noise from background wind automatically making the human voice stand out.

Creative Control:  The Creative Control renders highly unique expressions by matching the colors to your subject and surroundings. In Miniature Effect Mode, the video recorded is played back in 10x fast-forwarding for humorous effect.

High-Speed Video:  High-speed videos at 220 fps in QVGA size (320 x 240 pixels) let you capture scenes that you can’t see with the naked eye, and play them back in dramatic slow motion.

Additional Functions

iA (Intelligent Auto) Mode/Scene Mode: The camera makes the optimal settings automatically.
Still Image Recording:  It is possible to take a still image while recording video simultaneously. The picture size is fixed to 3.5MP (16:9).
Cut Animation:  You can cut out a clear still image from a video in the camera thanks to the Intelligent Resolution technology.
Video Divide:  You can divide a single video into two parts using only the camera.
Archive and Share

3D Image Viewer / VIERA Link:  Photos or videos recorded in AVCHD on SD/SDHC/SDXC Memory Cards are easy to view on a Panasonic VIERA TV. Simply insert the card into the VIERA Image Viewer (SD/SDHC/SDXC Memory Card slot) on VIERA TV or Blu-ray Disc players to playback your contents.With the DMC-ZS20, you can use an optional HDMI mini cable to output images you took from the camera directly to the TV for VIERA Link. The pictures taken with the 3D Photo Mode via the 3D Image Viewer offers you a whole new exciting experience.

LUMIX Image Uploader:  You can upload images to Facebook (photos and videos) and YouTube (videos) with simple operation.

PHOTOfunSTUDIO:  The PHOTOfunSTUDIO 8.1 Premium Edition makes it possible to sort and organize photos and videos not only of those newly taken but also of those stored in your computer with quick start-up and fast read-in of images.Recorded videos can be edited with the Short Movie Story function and written into MPEG2 to burn onto a BD / DVD disc. You can also enjoy making photos and videos slideshows with a variety of effects and use your iTunes music library as background music. It is also possible to put a title or add comments on the scene utilizing the information from the people’s names registered in Face Recognition.

Additional Functions:  Slideshow With Music, Category Playback, Set Favorites, Cropping (Trimming), DPOF Print Setting, Title Edit/Text Stamp, PictBridge Compatible, 12/30 Thumbnails Display, Set Protection, Calendar Display, and Resize.

GPS Function

GPS System with World Map Information:  The DMC-ZS20 is acclaimed as an excellent travel companion because of a host of travel-friendly functions represented by the built-in GPS system. You can copy the map data of a designated city to an SDXC/SDHC/SD Memory Card out of an included map DVD which holds detailed maps of approx. 90 countries worldwide on a scale of 1/25,000.

Shooting:  The LUMIX GPS displays not only latitudes and longitudes, but also the name of the Country/Region, State/Prov./County, County/Township, City/Town/Village and Landmark. The area information covers 203 countries or regions for global use. Plus, landmark information for more than 1,000,000 places covers 82 countries or regions.

Panasonic GPS Shooting

My Location:  You can get geographic information even in unfamiliar places to find out where you are and what landmarks are nearby.

Easy to Set:  Simply select “GPS” and shoot, and latitude and longitude information is recorded to the EXIF data on the photo or video.

Auto Clock Setting:  The internal clock of the camera is automatically adjusted to the local time of the place where the camera is.

My Landmark Function:  You can even create your own landmarks for your home or any place else you like, with a maximum of 50 places.

Playback:  The photos and videos with the location names are automatically sorted in the virtual folder alphabetically in the camera allowing quick reach.

Playback on Map Information:  The geo-tagged images can be played back along with a map so that you can trace your trip on the map and with your photos at the same time.

Archive:  You can refer to the location names via the PHOTOfunSTUDIO 8.1 Premium Edition. It’s also easy to sort or search images by the location names.
Share:  Geo-tagged images can be pinpointed on the maps of social media Internet maps to be shared with your friends and family.

The Map Data of Designated City:  You can copy the map data of designated city to a memory card out of a bundled map DVD.


Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 Digital Camera — 1 Comment

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    I have had this wonderful camera for two years and I’m still happy with it. It is still a very great camera!

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