Nikon P900 vs Panasonic ZS200
The Nikon Coolpix P900 and the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS200 (labelled Panasonic TZ200 in some countries) are two digital cameras that were officially introduced, respectively, in March 2015 and February 2018. Both the P900 and the ZS200 are fixed lens compact cameras that are based on a 1/2.3-inch (P900) and an one-inch (ZS200) sensor. The Nikon has a resolution of 15.9 megapixels, whereas the Panasonic provides 20 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
|Nikon P900||Panasonic ZS200|
|Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|24-2000mm f/2.8-6.5||24-360mm f/3.3-6.4|
|15.9 MP, 1/2.3" Sensor||20 MP, 1" Sensor|
|1080/60p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO 100-6,400 (100 - 12,800)||ISO 125-12,800 (80 - 25,600)|
|Electronic viewfinder (921k dots)||Electronic viewfinder (2330k dots)|
|3.0 LCD, 921k dots||3.0 LCD, 1240k dots|
|Swivel screen (not touch-sensitive)||Fixed touchscreen|
|7 shutter flaps per second||10 shutter flaps per second|
|Lens-based stabilization||In-body stabilization|
|360 shots per battery charge||370 shots per battery charge|
|140 x 103 x 137 mm, 899 g||111 x 65 x 45 mm, 340 g|
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon Coolpix P900 and the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS200? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
The physical size and weight of the Nikon P900 and the Panasonic ZS200 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The ZS200 can be obtained in two different colors (black, silver), while the P900 is only available in black.
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Panasonic ZS200 is considerably smaller (50 percent) than the Nikon P900. Moreover, the ZS200 is substantially lighter (62 percent) than the P900. In this context, it is worth noting that neither the P900 nor the ZS200 are weather-sealed.
Concerning battery life, the P900 gets 360 shots out of its EN-EL23 battery, while the ZS200 can take 370 images on a single charge of its DMW-BLG10 power pack. The battery packs of both cameras can be charged via USB, which can be very convenient when travelling.
The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.
|Nikon P900||140 mm||103 mm||137 mm||899 g||360||n||Mar 2015||599|
|Panasonic ZS200||111 mm||65 mm||45 mm||340 g||370||n||Feb 2018||799|
|Canon G5 X Mark II||111 mm||61 mm||46 mm||340 g||230||n||Jul 2019||899|
|Canon G7 X Mark II||106 mm||61 mm||42 mm||319 g||265||n||Feb 2016||699|
|Canon SX60||128 mm||93 mm||114 mm||650 g||340||n||Sep 2014||549|
|Kodak AZ901||139 mm||104 mm||119 mm||777 g||400||n||Jan 2016||499|
|Nikon P950||140 mm||110 mm||150 mm||1005 g||290||n||Jan 2020||799|
|Nikon P1000||146 mm||119 mm||181 mm||1415 g||250||n||Jul 2018||999|
|Nikon B700||125 mm||85 mm||107 mm||565 g||350||n||Feb 2016||499|
|Nikon B500||114 mm||78 mm||95 mm||541 g||600||n||Jan 2016||299|
|Nikon L840||113 mm||78 mm||96 mm||538 g||590||n||Feb 2015||299|
|Nikon 1 J4||100 mm||60 mm||29 mm||232 g||300||n||Apr 2014||549|
|Panasonic FZ1000 II||136 mm||97 mm||131 mm||810 g||350||n||Feb 2019||899|
|Panasonic GX9||124 mm||72 mm||47 mm||407 g||260||n||Feb 2018||849|
|Panasonic LX10||106 mm||60 mm||42 mm||310 g||260||n||Sep 2016||699|
|Panasonic ZS100||111 mm||65 mm||44 mm||312 g||300||n||Jan 2016||699|
|Ricoh GR II||117 mm||63 mm||35 mm||251 g||320||n||Jun 2015||699|
Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.
(1) Number of images that can be taken on a full battery charge according to the CIPA-standard; (2) Official announcement.
The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The P900 was launched at a somewhat lower price (by 25 percent) than the ZS200, which makes it more attractive for photographers on a tight budget. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.
The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Moreover, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more control over depth-of-field in the image and, thus, the ability to better isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Nikon P900 features a 1/2.3-inch sensor and the Panasonic ZS200 an one-inch sensor. The sensor area in the ZS200 is 314 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 5.6 and 2.7. The sensor in the P900 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the ZS200 offers a 3:2 aspect.
With 20MP, the ZS200 offers a higher resolution than the P900 (15.9MP), but the ZS200 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 2.41μm versus 1.33μm for the P900) due to its larger sensor. Moreover, the ZS200 is a much more recent model (by 2 years and 11 months) than the P900, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the P900 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The resolution advantage of the Panasonic ZS200 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the ZS200 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 27.4 x 18.2 inches or 69.5 x 46.3 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 21.9 x 14.6 inches or 55.6 x 37.1 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 18.2 x 12.2 inches or 46.3 x 30.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Nikon P900 are 23 x 17.3 inches or 58.5 x 43.9 cm for good quality, 18.4 x 13.8 inches or 46.8 x 35.1 cm for very good quality, and 15.4 x 11.5 inches or 39 x 29.3 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Nikon Coolpix P900 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 6400, which can be extended to ISO 100-12800. The corresponding ISO settings for the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS200 are ISO 125 to ISO 12800, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 80-25600.
For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service assesses and scores the color depth ("DXO Portrait"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports") of camera sensors, and also publishes an overall camera score. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|Canon G5 X Mark II||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|Canon G7 X Mark II||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||..||..||..||..|
|Nikon 1 J4||1-inch||18.2||5232||3488||1080/60p||20.8||10.7||426||53|
|Panasonic FZ1000 II||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|Panasonic GX9||Four Thirds||20.2||5184||3888||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
|Ricoh GR II||APS-C||16.1||4928||3264||1080/30p||23.6||13.7||1078||80|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, but the ZS200 provides a better video resolution than the P900. It can shoot movie footage at 4K/30p, while the Nikon is limited to 1080/60p.
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The two cameras under review are similar with respect to both having an electronic viewfinder. However, the one in the ZS200 offers a substantially higher resolution than the one in the P900 (2330k vs 921k dots). The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Nikon P900 and Panasonic ZS200 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|Canon G5 X Mark II||2360||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||30||Y||Y|
|Canon G7 X Mark II||none||n||3.0||1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||8.0||Y||Y|
|Nikon 1 J4||none||n||3.0||1037||Fixed||Y||1/4000s||60.0||Y||n|
|Panasonic FZ1000 II||2360||n||3.0||1240||swivel||Y||1/4000s||12.0||Y||Y|
|Ricoh GR II||optional||n||3.0||1230||fixed||n||1/4000s||4.0||Y||n|
One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The ZS200 has a touchscreen, while the P900 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.The P900 has an articulated LCD that can be turned to be front-facing. This characteristic will be appreciated by vloggers and photographers who are interested in snapping selfies. In contrast, the ZS200 does not have a selfie-screen.
The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, the ZS200 is one of those camera that have an additional electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
The Nikon P900 and the Panasonic ZS200 both have an intervalometer built-in. This enables the photographer to capture time lapse sequences, such as flower blooming, a sunset or moon rise, without purchasing an external camera trigger and related software.
Both the P900 and the ZS200 have zoom lenses built in. The P900 has a 24-2000mm f/2.8-6.5 optic and the ZS200 offers a 24-360mm f/3.3-6.4 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the Nikon and Panasonic provide the same view at the wide-angle end, but the Panasonic has less tele-photo reach at the long end. The P900 offers the faster maximum aperture.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the P900 and the ZS200 write their files to SDXC cards. The ZS200 supports UHS-I cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s), while the P900 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Nikon Coolpix P900 and Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS200 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
| WiFi |
|Canon G5 X Mark II||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||3.1||Y||-||Y|
|Canon G7 X Mark II||-||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|Nikon 1 J4||-||stereo||mono||-||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-|
|Panasonic FZ1000 II||Y||stereo||mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|Ricoh GR II||Y||stereo||mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
Travel and landscape photographers will find it useful that the P900 has an internal geolocalization sensor and can record GPS coordinates in its EXIF data.
The ZS200 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Panasonic. In contrast, the P900 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the P900 was succeeded by the Nikon P950. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Nikon and Panasonic websites.
So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Nikon P900 or the Panasonic ZS200 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.
Arguments in favor of the Nikon Coolpix P900:
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
- More selfie-friendly: Has an articulated screen that can be turned to be front-facing.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.8 vs f/3.3).
- More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
- Easier geotagging: Features an internal GPS sensor to log localization data.
- Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
- More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced segment (25 percent cheaper at launch).
- More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in March 2015).
Advantages of the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS200:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (20 vs 15.9MP), which boosts linear resolution by 14%.
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Better image quality: Is equipped with a larger and more technologically advanced sensor.
- Richer colors: The sensor size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger sensor captures a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger sensor produces good images even in poorly lit environments.
- Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 1080/60p).
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (2330k vs 921k dots).
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1240k vs 921k dots).
- Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (10 vs 7 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
- More compact: Is smaller (111x65mm vs 140x103mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 559g or 62 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
- Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
- Faster buffer clearing: Has an SD card interface that supports the UHS-I standard.
- More modern: Reflects 2 years and 11 months of technical progress since the P900 launch.
If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the ZS200 is the clear winner of the contest (17 : 10 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. A professional wedding photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a travel photog, and a person interested in cityscapes has distinct needs from a macro shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon P900 and the Panasonic ZS200 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Superzoom Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it says little about, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance of the P900 and the ZS200 in practical situations. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.
This is why expert reviews are important. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
|Nikon P900||..||77/100||4/5||4.5/5||4/5||Mar 2015||599|
|Panasonic ZS200||+ +||81/100||4.5/5||..||4.5/5||Feb 2018||799|
|Canon G5 X Mark II||+||82/100||..||..||4/5||Jul 2019||899|
|Canon G7 X Mark II||+ +||81/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2016||699|
|Canon SX60||+ +||75/100||4/5||..||4.5/5||Sep 2014||549|
|Kodak AZ901||..||..||3.5/5||..||3/5||Jan 2016||499|
|Nikon P950||..||..||4/5||..||4/5||Jan 2020||799|
|Nikon P1000||+||73/100||3.5/5||4.5/5||3.5/5||Jul 2018||999|
|Nikon B700||+||..||4/5||..||4/5||Feb 2016||499|
|Nikon B500||+||..||4/5||..||3.5/5||Jan 2016||299|
|Nikon L840||+ +||..||3.5/5||..||4/5||Feb 2015||299|
|Nikon 1 J4||..||..||4.5/5||..||4/5||Apr 2014||549|
|Panasonic FZ1000 II||..||83/100||4.5/5||..||4.5/5||Feb 2019||899|
|Panasonic GX9||+||84/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Feb 2018||849|
|Panasonic LX10||+ +||81/100||4/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2016||699|
|Panasonic ZS100||+ +||82/100||4.5/5||4/5||4.5/5||Jan 2016||699|
|Ricoh GR II||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2015||699|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
The above review scores should be interpreted with care, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make your choice using the following search menu. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.
- Canon M vs Nikon P900
- Fujifilm GFX 50S vs Nikon P900
- Fujifilm X-H1 vs Nikon P900
- Nikon D3400 vs Panasonic ZS200
- Nikon D7200 vs Panasonic ZS200
- Nikon P900 vs Panasonic LX100
- Nikon P900 vs Sony A900
- Nikon P900 vs Sony RX100 III
- Panasonic G95 vs Panasonic ZS200
- Panasonic GM1 vs Panasonic ZS200
- Panasonic S1 vs Panasonic ZS200
- Panasonic ZS200 vs Sony RX1
Specifications: Nikon P900 vs Panasonic ZS200
|Camera Model||Nikon P900||Panasonic ZS200|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||24-2000mm f/2.8-6.5||24-360mm f/3.3-6.4|
|Launch Date||March 2015||February 2018|
|Launch Price||USD 599||USD 799|
|Sensor Specs||Nikon P900||Panasonic ZS200|
|Sensor Format||1/2.3" Sensor||1" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||6.17 x 4.55 mm||13.2 x 8.8 mm|
|Sensor Area||28.0735 mm2||116.16 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||7.7 mm||15.9 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||15.9 Megapixels||20 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4608 x 3456 pixels||5472 x 3648 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.33 μm||2.41 μm|
|Pixel Density||56.73 MP/cm2||17.18 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/60p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 6,400 ISO||125 - 12,800 ISO|
|ISO Boost||100 - 12,800 ISO||80 - 25,600 ISO|
|Image Processor||EXPEED C2||Venus|
|Screen Specs||Nikon P900||Panasonic ZS200|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||921k dots||2330k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||921k dots||1240k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Swivel screen||Fixed screen|
|Touch Input||no Touchscreen||Touchscreen|
|Shooting Specs||Nikon P900||Panasonic ZS200|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Manual Focusing Aid||Focus Peaking||Focus Peaking|
|Max Shutter Speed (mechanical)||1/4000s||1/2000s|
|Continuous Shooting||7 shutter flaps/s||10 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||no E-Shutter||up to 1/16000s|
|Time-Lapse Photography||Intervalometer built-in||Intervalometer built-in|
|Image Stabilization||Lens-based stabilization||In-body stabilization|
|Fill Flash||Build-in Flash||Build-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||no||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Nikon P900||Panasonic ZS200|
|External Flash||no Hotshoe||no Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Near-Field Communication||NFC built-in||no NFC|
|Bluetooth Support||no Bluetooth||Bluetooth built-in|
|Geotagging||GPS built-in||no internal GPS|
|Body Specs||Nikon P900||Panasonic ZS200|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||360 shots per charge||370 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||USB charging|
140 x 103 x 137 mm
(5.5 x 4.1 x 5.4 in)
111 x 65 x 45 mm
(4.4 x 2.6 x 1.8 in)
|Camera Weight||899 g (31.7 oz)||340 g (12.0 oz)|