Panasonic Lumix ZS80 review

Compact ‘travel zoom’ camera with a powerful 30x optical reach and flip-up screen for selfies

Panasonic Lumix ZS80
(Image: © Gavin Stoker / Digital Camera World)

Digital Camera World Verdict

While barely altered from its predecessor, the ZS80, also known as the TZ90, does what its name suggests. It offers a ‘Travel Zoom’ for photographers and videographers wanting access to a broader focal range than their smartphone typically provides, and without an image crop. Fast forward a few years on from this camera’s original 2019 release and the ZS80 can also now be viewed as a proto ‘vlogging’ camera for content creators on a budget, thanks to its selfie-enabling flip-up LCD screen plus respectable 4K video resolution. There’s life in this old dog yet.

Pros

  • +

    Extensive focal range

  • +

    Pocket-sized proportions

  • +

    Flip-up screen for selfies

  • +

    Rock solid construction

Cons

  • -

    Nothing much has changed compared to 2017’s TZ90

  • -

    Eye level viewfinder too small for prolonged use

  • -

    Some loss of detail towards edges of the frame at lens’ widest setting

  • -

    Camera grip could be bigger / better defined

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In terms of brand-new releases aimed squarely at photographers, pocket-sized point-and-shoot digital cameras are thin on the ground these days. However, there are a handful of models just a few years old that we still feel are worth seeking out. A case in point is the Panasonic Lumix ZS80 (which is sold as the Lumix TZ95 in Europe and Australasia). This is a ‘travel zoom’ compact released in 2019 as an update to 2017’s Lumix TZ90/ZS70

Both these well-constructed cameras offer pretty much the same core specifications. At the heart of each is a very useful 30x optical zoom – which provides one good reason to use this option instead of a smartphone – coupled with a small 1/2.3-inch CMOS sensor. This chip is crammed full to burst with 20.3 million effective pixels.

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Gavin Stoker

Gavin has over 30 years’ experience of writing about photography and television. He is currently the editor of British Photographic Industry News, and previously served as editor of Which Digital Camera and deputy editor of Total Digital Photography


He has also written for a wide range of publications including T3, BBC Focus, Empire, NME, Radio Times, MacWorld, Computer Active, What Digital Camera and the Rough Guide books.


With his wealth of knowledge, Gavin is well placed to recognize great camera deals and recommend the best products in Digital Camera World’s buying guides. He also writes on a number of specialist subjects including binoculars and monoculars, spotting scopes, microscopes, trail cameras, action cameras, body cameras, filters and cameras straps.