Panasonic FZ300 vs ZS70
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 (called Panasonic FZ330 in some regions) and the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS70 (labelled Panasonic TZ90 in some countries) are two digital cameras that were revealed to the public, respectively, in July 2015 and April 2017. Both the FZ300 and the ZS70 are fixed lens compact cameras that are equipped with a 1/2.3-inch sensor. The FZ300 has a resolution of 12 megapixels, whereas the ZS70 provides 20.2 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 and the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS70? 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 Panasonic FZ300 and the Panasonic ZS70 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 ZS70 can be obtained in two different colors (black, silver), while the FZ300 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 ZS70 is considerably smaller (38 percent) than the Panasonic FZ300. Moreover, the ZS70 is substantially lighter (53 percent) than the FZ300. It is worth mentioning in this context that the FZ300 is splash and dust resistant, while the ZS70 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing.
The power pack in the ZS70 can be charged via the USB port, which can be very convenient when travelling.
The adjacent table lists the principal physical characteristics of the two cameras alongside a wider set of alternatives. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, you can move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.
|1.||Panasonic FZ300||132 mm||92 mm||117 mm||691 g||380||Y||Jul 2015||599||amazon.com|
|2.||Panasonic ZS70||112 mm||67 mm||41 mm||322 g||380||n||Apr 2017||449||ebay.com|
|3.||Canon SX730||110 mm||64 mm||40 mm||300 g||250||n||Apr 2017||399||ebay.com|
|4.||Canon SX720||110 mm||64 mm||36 mm||270 g||250||n||Feb 2016||379||ebay.com|
|5.||Canon G3 X||123 mm||77 mm||105 mm||733 g||300||Y||Jun 2015||999||ebay.com|
|6.||Canon SX60||128 mm||93 mm||114 mm||650 g||340||n||Sep 2014||549||ebay.com|
|7.||Canon SX1||128 mm||88 mm||88 mm||615 g||..||n||Sep 2008||599||ebay.com|
|8.||Fujifilm X30||119 mm||72 mm||60 mm||423 g||470||n||Aug 2014||599||ebay.com|
|9.||Kodak AZ901||139 mm||104 mm||119 mm||777 g||400||n||Jan 2016||499||amazon.com|
|10.||Panasonic ZS80||112 mm||69 mm||42 mm||327 g||380||n||Feb 2019||449||amazon.com|
|11.||Panasonic FZ80||130 mm||94 mm||119 mm||616 g||330||n||Jan 2017||399||amazon.com|
|12.||Panasonic FZ200||125 mm||87 mm||110 mm||588 g||540||n||Jul 2012||599||ebay.com|
|13.||Panasonic FZ150||124 mm||82 mm||92 mm||528 g||410||n||Aug 2011||499||ebay.com|
|14.||Panasonic FZ100||124 mm||82 mm||92 mm||540 g||410||n||Jul 2010||499||ebay.com|
|15.||Panasonic LX5||110 mm||65 mm||43 mm||271 g||400||n||Jul 2010||499||ebay.com|
|16.||Sony HX400V||130 mm||93 mm||103 mm||660 g||300||n||Feb 2014||499||ebay.com|
|Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
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 ZS70 was launched at a somewhat lower price (by 25 percent) than the FZ300, 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 imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Furthermore, a large sensor camera will give the photographer more possibilities to use shallow depth-of-field in order to isolate a subject from the background. On the downside, larger sensors tend to be associated with larger, more expensive camera bodies and lenses.
Both cameras under consideration feature a 1/2.3-inch sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 5.6. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the smaller-sensor digicams that favor affordability and compact design. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.
While the two cameras under review share the same sensor size, the ZS70 offers a higher resolution of 20.2 megapixels, compared with 12 MP of the FZ300. This megapixels advantage translates into a 30 percent gain in linear resolution. On the other hand, these sensor specs imply that the ZS70 has a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 1.18μm versus 1.53μm for the FZ300). However, it should be noted that the ZS70 is a somewhat more recent model (by 1 year and 9 months) than the FZ300, and its sensor might have benefitted from technological advances during this time that at least partly compensate for the smaller pixel size. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that neither of the two cameras has an anti-alias filter installed, so they are able to capture all the detail the sensor resolves.
The resolution advantage of the Panasonic ZS70 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the ZS70 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 25.9 x 19.4 inches or 65.8 x 49.4 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 20.7 x 15.6 inches or 52.7 x 39.5 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 17.3 x 13 inches or 43.9 x 32.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Panasonic FZ300 are 20 x 15 inches or 50.8 x 38.1 cm for good quality, 16 x 12 inches or 40.6 x 30.5 cm for very good quality, and 13.3 x 10 inches or 33.9 x 25.4 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 6400. The corresponding ISO settings for the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS70 are ISO 80 to ISO 3200, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 80-6400.
Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with BSI-CMOS (Backside Illuminated Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors. Both cameras use a Bayer filter for capturing RGB colors on a square grid of photosensors. This arrangement is found in most digital cameras.
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 Overall DXO ratings for the two cameras under consideration are close, suggesting that they provide similar imaging performance. The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar cameras.
|5.||Canon G3 X||1-inch||20.0||5472||3648||1080/60p||21.4||12.3||521||63|
|Note: DXO values in italics represent estimates based on sensor size and age.|
Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (4K/30p).
Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a variety of features. The two cameras under consideration are similar with respect to both having an electronic viewfinder. However, the one in the FZ300 offers a higher resolution than the one in the ZS70 (1440k vs 1166k dots). The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Panasonic FZ300 and Panasonic ZS70 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|1.||Panasonic FZ300||1440||n||3.0 / 1040||swivel||Y||1/4000s||12.0/s||Y||Y|
|2.||Panasonic ZS70||1166||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|3.||Canon SX730||none||n||3.0 / 922||tilting||n||1/3200s||5.9/s||Y||Y|
|4.||Canon SX720||none||n||3.0 / 922||fixed||n||1/3200s||5.9/s||Y||Y|
|5.||Canon G3 X||optional||n||3.2 / 1620||tilting||Y||1/2000s||5.9/s||Y||Y|
|6.||Canon SX60||922||n||3.0 / 922||swivel||n||1/2000s||6.4/s||Y||Y|
|7.||Canon SX1||202||n||2.8 / 230||swivel||n||1/3200s||4.0/s||Y||Y|
|8.||Fujifilm X30||2360||n||3.0 / 920||tilting||n||1/4000s||12.0/s||Y||Y|
|9.||Kodak AZ901||202||n||3.0 / 920||swivel||n||1/2000s||5.0/s||Y||Y|
|10.||Panasonic ZS80||2330||n||3.0 / 1040||tilting||Y||1/2000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|11.||Panasonic FZ80||1166||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||Y||1/2000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|12.||Panasonic FZ200||1312||n||3.0 / 460||swivel||n||1/4000s||12.0/s||Y||Y|
|13.||Panasonic FZ150||202||n||3.0 / 460||swivel||n||1/2000s||12.0/s||Y||Y|
|14.||Panasonic FZ100||202||n||3.0 / 460||swivel||n||1/2000s||11.0/s||Y||Y|
|15.||Panasonic LX5||optional||n||3.0 / 460||fixed||n||1/4000s||2.5/s||Y||Y|
|16.||Sony HX400V||210||n||3.0 / 921||tilting||n||1/4000s||10.0/s||Y||Y|
|Notes: *) Information refers to the mechanical shutter, unless the camera only has an electronic one.|
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, both cameras under consideration feature an 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 Panasonic FZ300 has 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 FZ300 and the ZS70 have zoom lenses built in. The FZ300 has a 25-600mm f/2.8-2.8 optic and the ZS70 offers a 24-720mm f/3.3-6.4 (focal lengths in full frame equivalent terms). Hence, the ZS70 provides a wider angle of view at the short end, as well as more tele-photo reach at the long end than the FZ300. The FZ300 offers the faster maximum aperture.
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the FZ300 and the ZS70 write their files to SDXC cards. Both cameras can use UHS-I cards, which provide for Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s.
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 Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300 and Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS70 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
Mic / Speaker
|1.||Panasonic FZ300||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||-||-|
|2.||Panasonic ZS70||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|3.||Canon SX730||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||Y|
|4.||Canon SX720||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|5.||Canon G3 X||Y||stereo / mono||Y||Y||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|6.||Canon SX60||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||Y||Y||-|
|7.||Canon SX1||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||YES||2.0||-||-||-|
|8.||Fujifilm X30||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|9.||Kodak AZ901||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|10.||Panasonic ZS80||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|11.||Panasonic FZ80||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|12.||Panasonic FZ200||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|13.||Panasonic FZ150||Y||stereo / -||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|14.||Panasonic FZ100||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|15.||Panasonic LX5||Y||mono / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|16.||Sony HX400V||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||Y||-|
It is notable that the FZ300 has a hotshoe, while the ZS70 does not. This socket makes it possible to easily attach optional accessories, such as an external flash gun.
The FZ300 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Panasonic. In contrast, the ZS70 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on ebay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the ZS70 was succeeded by the Panasonic ZS80. Further information on the features and operation of the FZ300 and ZS70 can be found, respectively, in the Panasonic FZ300 Manual (free pdf) or the online Panasonic ZS70 Manual.
So how do things add up? Is there a clear favorite between the Panasonic FZ300 and the Panasonic ZS70? Which camera is better? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Advantages of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ300:
- Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
- More detailed viewfinder: Has higher resolution electronic viewfinder (1440k vs 1166k dots).
- Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.70x vs 0.46x).
- More flexible LCD: Has a swivel screen for odd-angle shots in portrait or landscape orientation.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (12 vs 10 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- Easier time-lapse photography: Has an intervalometer built-in for low frequency shooting.
- Better light gathering: Has a lens with a wider maximum aperture (f/2.8 vs f/3.3).
- Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
- Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
- More heavily discounted: Has been on the market for longer (launched in July 2015).
Arguments in favor of the Panasonic Lumix DC-ZS70:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (20.2 vs 12MP), which boosts linear resolution by 30%.
- Wider view: Has a wider-angle lens that facilitates landscape or interior shots.
- More tele-reach: Has a longer tele-lens for perspective compression and subject magnification.
- More compact: Is smaller (112x67mm vs 132x92mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
- Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 369g or 53 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- More affordable: Was released into a lower priced segment (25 percent cheaper at launch).
- More modern: Was introduced somewhat (1 year and 9 months) more recently.
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the FZ300 emerges as the winner of the contest (11 : 8 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 wildlife photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a family photog, and a person interested in architecture has distinct needs from a sports 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 Panasonic FZ300 and the Panasonic ZS70 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 specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the FZ300 or the ZS70. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.
This is where reviews by experts come in. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], digitalcameraworld [DCW], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). 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.
|1.||Panasonic FZ300||..||+ +||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jul 2015||599||amazon.com|
|2.||Panasonic ZS70||..||+ +||..||..||4/5||4/5||Apr 2017||449||ebay.com|
|3.||Canon SX730||..||+||..||..||4/5||4/5||Apr 2017||399||ebay.com|
|4.||Canon SX720||..||+||..||..||4/5||4.5/5||Feb 2016||379||ebay.com|
|5.||Canon G3 X||3.5/5||+||..||..||4.5/5||4/5||Jun 2015||999||ebay.com|
|6.||Canon SX60||3/5||+ +||..||75/100||4/5||4.5/5||Sep 2014||549||ebay.com|
|7.||Canon SX1||..||+ +||..||+||..||3.5/5||Sep 2008||599||ebay.com|
|8.||Fujifilm X30||4/5||..||..||76/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Aug 2014||599||ebay.com|
|9.||Kodak AZ901||..||..||..||..||3.5/5||3/5||Jan 2016||499||amazon.com|
|10.||Panasonic ZS80||..||+ +||..||..||4.5/5||..||Feb 2019||449||amazon.com|
|11.||Panasonic FZ80||..||+ +||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jan 2017||399||amazon.com|
|12.||Panasonic FZ200||3/5||+ +||..||80/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jul 2012||599||ebay.com|
|13.||Panasonic FZ150||3/5||+ +||..||76/100||4/5||4.5/5||Aug 2011||499||ebay.com|
|14.||Panasonic FZ100||..||+||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jul 2010||499||ebay.com|
|15.||Panasonic LX5||4/5||+||..||73/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jul 2010||499||ebay.com|
|16.||Sony HX400V||4/5||+ +||..||..||4/5||4/5||Feb 2014||499||ebay.com|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings were established in reference to similarly priced cameras that were available in the market at the time of the review. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and comparing ratings of very distinct cameras or ones that are far apart in terms of their release date have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.
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 5D vs Panasonic FZ300
- Canon G15 vs Panasonic FZ300
- Canon SX620 vs Panasonic FZ300
- Canon SX720 vs Panasonic ZS70
- Fujifilm X-A7 vs Panasonic FZ300
- Leica M Typ 262 vs Panasonic ZS70
- Nikon D4S vs Panasonic ZS70
- Nikon P900 vs Panasonic ZS70
- Olympus TG-5 vs Panasonic ZS70
- Panasonic FZ300 vs Panasonic GX9
- Panasonic FZ300 vs Panasonic S1
- Panasonic ZS70 vs Sony A7C
Specifications: Panasonic FZ300 vs Panasonic ZS70
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Panasonic FZ300||Panasonic ZS70|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Fixed lens compact camera|
|Camera Lens||25-600mm f/2.8||24-720mm f/3.3-6.4|
|Launch Date||July 2015||April 2017|
|Launch Price||USD 599||USD 449|
|Sensor Specs||Panasonic FZ300||Panasonic ZS70|
|Sensor Format||1/2.3" Sensor||1/2.3" Sensor|
|Sensor Size||6.17 x 4.55 mm||6.17 x 4.55 mm|
|Sensor Area||28.0735 mm2||28.0735 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||7.7 mm||7.7 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||12 Megapixels||20.2 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4000 x 3000 pixels||5184 x 3888 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.53 μm||1.18 μm|
|Pixel Density||42.74 MP/cm2||71.80 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||no AA filter|
|Movie Capability||4K/30p Video||4K/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||100 - 6,400 ISO||80 - 3,200 ISO|
|ISO Boost||no Enhancement||80 - 6,400 ISO|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||38||36|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||19.3||19.1|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||11.0||10.6|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||97||106|
|Screen Specs||Panasonic FZ300||Panasonic ZS70|
|Viewfinder Type||Electronic viewfinder||Electronic viewfinder|
|Viewfinder Field of View||100%||100%|
|Viewfinder Resolution||1440k dots||1166k dots|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||3.0inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||1040k dots||1040k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Swivel screen||Tilting screen|
|Shooting Specs||Panasonic FZ300||Panasonic ZS70|
|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||12 shutter flaps/s||10 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||up to 1/16000s||up to 1/16000s|
|Time-Lapse Photography||Intervalometer built-in||no Intervalometer|
|Fill Flash||Built-in Flash||Built-in Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Single or Dual Card Slots||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||UHS-I||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Panasonic FZ300||Panasonic ZS70|
|External Flash||Hotshoe||no Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||mini HDMI||micro HDMI|
|Microphone Port||External MIC port||no MIC socket|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||Wifi built-in|
|Body Specs||Panasonic FZ300||Panasonic ZS70|
|Environmental Sealing||Weathersealed body||not weather sealed|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||380 shots per charge||380 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||no USB charging||USB charging|
132 x 92 x 117 mm
(5.2 x 3.6 x 4.6 in)
112 x 67 x 41 mm
(4.4 x 2.6 x 1.6 in)
|Camera Weight||691 g (24.4 oz)||322 g (11.4 oz)|
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