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The good old compact camera isn't quite dead: Panasonic maintains its life support

Panasonic TZ202D mock-up
(Image credit: www.vecteezy.com, Future)

Ladies and gentlemen, this is big. We need champagne, balloons, fireworks, a trumpet solo - heck, hire the whole darned marching band! That's right, a new compact camera has landed!

Yes, thanks to the tedious global domination of the camera phone, the launch of a new, conventional compact camera has become a very rare event, so much so that it's worthy of much fanfare... or at least a brief mention on Digital Camera World.

The camera in question is the Panasonic TZ202D, which replaces the outgoing TZ202. If neither model number is familiar, that's because both cameras appear to be German-only releases. The TZ202 is known as the TZ200 in the rest of Europe, and the ZS200 in the US. Check out our full review of the TZ200 (opens in new tab).

PANASONIC LUMIX ZS200

(Image credit: Panasonic)

But as we've sadly come to expect from 'new' compact camera launches, the TZ202D barely qualifies as a new camera. According to the German publication Photographix Magazin (opens in new tab), the only discernible difference is the new camera gets a 1840k-dot LCD display, replacing the 1240k-dot panel featured on the TZ202/TZ200/ZS200. Could the 'D' in TZ202D therefore stand for 'Display'? Surely not - that's far too logical. The folks over at Photographix Magazin speculate, reasonably, that the old display panel may no longer be available, necessitating a new LCD in order to keep the camera in production.

Panasonic TZ200

(Image credit: Panasonic)

Apart from the LCD resolution boost, the rest of the camera appears the same, including the 20-megapixel 1-inch sensor, 24-230mm-equivalent 15x zoom lens, 4K video capability, and the 2330k-dot EVF. To be fair to Panasonic, the TZ200/ZS200 is a very good travel compact, thanks to it combining a relatively large sensor (for a compact camera) with a generous zoom range. There's little - if anything - that competes directly with it, so swapping out the rear screen for a better quality panel is a welcome upgrade to what is already a well-sorted camera. That said, the TZ202D will allegedly be launched with a price tag of 799 Euros, when the TZ202 can be had for 659 Euros. Assuming that kind of price hike will apply to the TZ200/ZS200 replacement, that's some serious price inflation. So if you you're tempted by a TZ200/ZS200, buy now, before they're discontinued.

Story credit: Photographix Magazin (opens in new tab)

Read more:

Best Panasonic cameras (opens in new tab)
Best compact cameras (opens in new tab)
Best travel cameras (opens in new tab)
Best bridge cameras (opens in new tab)
Best waterproof cameras (opens in new tab)
Best point and shoot cameras (opens in new tab)

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Ben is the Imaging Labs manager, responsible for all the testing on Digital Camera World and across the entire photography portfolio at Future. Whether he's in the lab testing the sharpness of new lenses, the resolution of the latest image sensors, the zoom range of monster bridge cameras or even the latest camera phones, Ben is our go-to guy for technical insight. He's also the team's man-at-arms when it comes to camera bags, filters, memory cards, and all manner of camera accessories – his lab is a bit like the Batcave of photography! With years of experience trialling and testing kit, he's a human encyclopedia of benchmarks when it comes to recommending the best buys.