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Panasonic FZ1000 Review Lumix DMC-FZ1000 4k Camera with Leica Lens

by on February 22, 2015

What we’re looking at is a terrific 4K camera, and it is a follow-up to the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH4, the first compact system to have 4K video recording. Often times a company’s first foray into a new type of market can come off as clumsy, and yet Panasonic’s second effort is worth writing home about (not to mention a positive review).

It would appear that Panasonic has created a 4K DSLR that is something for everyone. The beginners will love it because it is simple to use and they will be able to use it to get aboard the 4K video fad that will no doubt become the new standard in a short time. As for professionals, they will love what they can do with it, as its benefits are numerous.

The Good

So what can I say, other than you can have 4K video with ultra high-resolution images in such a terrific package, as you can see on the official product page. What the Panasonic FZ1000 has is 4K video recording capability with QFHD 4K 3840 x 2160 at 30 fps. Then you can switch easily between video and still capture for the ultimate in image creativity. It also has in-camera playback screen grabs of 3840 x 2160 8 Megapixel equivalent hybrid photography photos from 4K video footage in order to capture all kinds of still shots on video.

The DMC-FZ1000 has a lens created for it with the LEICA VARIO-ELMARIT. It has a F2.8-4.0 brightness that can resist blurring even with a telephoto shot, as well an angle of view that extends from 25mm wide-angle to 16X optical zoom. The lens has 15 elements in 11 groups, like 4 ED lenses and 5 aspherical lenses with 8 aspherical surfaces.

Then there is an image quality that is the result of a 1-inch sensor as well as an all-new lens to fully express the limitless depth and sunlit warmth of nature. It has a 20.1 Megapixel High Sensitivity MOS sensor and it has a range of ISO 12800 and Extended ISO 25600.

The DMC-FZ1000 has a linear motor that is integrated into the focus system, which has 275 percent faster focusing, compared to the DMC-FZ200. It also has Depth From Defocus (DFD) technology that allows the time to focus to be shorten. Somehow, it is able to calculate the distance to the subject by evaluating 2 images with differing sharpness levels. It has a high-speed AF of approximately 0.09 second cubed.

Then there is the HYBRID O.I.S., an Optical Image Stablizer with 5-axis correction so there will be no blurry images. This gives the user the ability for one-handed use with compensation for 5 types of movement which includes horizontal, vertical, axis of rotation, vertical rotation, and horizontal rotation. There is also a Level Shot Function that can detect the image’s horizontal line and then maintains stability even if the camera is title. By the way, this works on video recording as well.

Check the Price of Panasonic DMC-FZ1000 4k Camera on Amazon:
4.2 - 174 Reviews

The Bad

According to DP Review, it is not good for those desiring a big zoom in a smaller package. Also, advanced videographers desiring Auto ISO and headphones socket will not be getting that. There is a spot for a microphone socket.

This might also be slightly nitpicking, but if you wanted a touchscreen for the screen, you won’t have it here. A lot of cameras have this as standard feature, and it is difficult to believe that this does not have it. Something tells me Panasonic would not have sacrificed that without good reason.

According to What Digital Camera, the “proliferation of buttons may intimidate inexperienced photographers”. Also, you cannot scrub back through 4K footage by each and every single frame.

Final Thoughts

The Panasonic FZ1000 is a 4K camera that we have been waiting for, because it is simple to use and had the latest in it. New photographers are going to be spoiled by 4K, provided they have the right way of recording it. Professional or more experienced photographers are also going to quickly fall in love with it, and it might a while before this technology is out-of-date.


Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ1000 Specs
• Camera Type: Unknown.
• Video Resolution: Max. 4K Video 3840 x 2160 at 30 fps
• Photo Resolution: 20.1 Megapixels
• Sensor Type: 1-inch High Sensitivity MOS Sensor
• File Formats: JPEG (DCF/Exif2.3)/RAW, DPOF (Still Images) AVCHD, MP4 (Motion Picture)
• Memory Card: SD Memory Card, SDHC Memory Card, SDXC Memory Card (Compatible with UHS-I Standard)
• Lens Mount: LEICA DC VARIO-ELMARIT 15 elements in 11 groups
• Image Stabilization: Unknown
• Connectivity: WiFi, NFC
• Digital Zoom: 4X
• Screen Size: 3.0 inches (7.5 cm)
• Max Frame Rate: 120 fps
• Focus Modes: Several different styles
• Frame by Frame Access to 4k Video


In addition to the actual Panasonic LUMIX DMC-FZ1000 itself, the box also contains a battery pack, battery charger, USB cable, Lens Hood, Lens Cap, Hot Shoe Cover, plus a Software DVD with PHOTOfunSTUDIO 9.5 E, SILKYPIX Developer Studio, LoiLoScope Trial Version, and Adobe Reader.

It is possible to get accessories that don’t come with it, and this includes an optional External Flash (DMW-FL580L) with built-in LCD video light. Then there is the optional DMW-MS2 Stereo/Shotgun Microphone for adjusting sound.

If you want to record in 4K, you will need a card rated as UHS Speed Class 3. I want to make certain that fact is stated.


PanasonicThe physical controls are for vital features like exposure modes, exposure compensation, movie recording, AF/ISO/WB selection and an adjustment dial. The viewfinder is an OLED XGA with over 2.36 million dots, and the LCD is at 3 inches with 920K dots.

The camera is pretty light, weighing only 0.8, and it is also very small considering the number of features that it has. I will explain more when I get to the Features section, but it can handle macro photography, and it has some interesting artistic filters as well that are easily controlled. It can also be controlled by a smartphone or tablet for some even better shots.

Check the Price of Panasonic DMC-FZ1000 4k Camera on Amazon:
4.2 - 174 Reviews

Overall Performance

I would say that the Panasonic DMC-FZ1000 handles like a dream, but I’m guessing that you might not be dreaming of DSLRs. If you are, then you can have your video in 4K and have lifelike quality still images. If you are willing to pay the price, wake up and get your hands on the Panasonic FZ1000 now.


The DMC-FZ1000 is definitely prepared for the mobile age. There is a Panasonic Image App that allows you to use a smartphone as a remote controller for zooming, shooting from a distance, or setting the focus. Then, once you have the image from the camera, you can instantly upload and share images on social media using the Panasonic Image App on a tablet or smartphone. Connection is simple with an NFC-compatible smartphone or tablet, or you could scan the QR code to connect to WiFi. There is also a geotagging feature so you can tag location information using the smartphone or tablet GPS info and then share it to social media.

For those who are into macro photography, you can shoot pictures with a minimum focusing distance of 3 centimeters.

If you want to have some artistic and original expressions for Instagram or just for fun can enjoy changes just by swiveling the camera. The effects include Expressive, Retro, Old Days, High Key, Low Key, Sepia, Monochrome, Dynamic Monochrome, Rough Monochrome, Impressive Art, High Dynamic, Cross Process, Toy Effect, Toy Pop, Bleach Bypass, Miniature Effect, Soft Focus, Fantasy, Star Filer, One Point Color, and Sunshine.

The DMC-FZ1000 also has an option of in-camera Raw conversion option, which allows the user to tweak a range of image parameters after a shot is taken, allowing him or her to apply different noise reduction and photo styles as well as making adjustments to brightness or the highlight and shadow response.

Image Quality and Resolution

It is a 20 Megapixel 1-inch type MOS sensor, capable of shooting at ISO 12800/Extended ISO25600. Video is capable of shooting at 60, 30, or 24 fps. The 4K can do 3840 x 2160 at up to 60 fps, and it is capable of 120 fps at quarter-speed 1080p.

There is a readout quad-core Venus IV processor that allows the user to have smooth QFHD recording when using a compatible UHS Speed Class 3 SD Card. There is also a burst mode capable of up to 12 frames per second for great stills of fast subjects.


You’re looking at about $747.99.00 for a brand new Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ1000. The price on the Amazon in Nov 2015 has been slashed by over $100 so it is might be a good time to pick one up.

Check the Price of Panasonic DMC-FZ1000 4k Camera on Amazon:
4.2 - 174 Reviews

The Not So Great

I would probably say the biggest beef is that it doesn’t have a touchscreen. If that is the biggest fault that I can find, then I would say that is a very good thing.


4k Capability
Special LEICA custom-made lens
1-inch sensor, 20.1 Megapixels
Depth From Focus (DFD) Technology
HYBRID OIS prevents blurry images
Macro Photography at 3 inches
Many artistic filters
Smartphone/tablet control via app


Not a lot of big zoom features
No touchscreen
Many buttons could confuse amateurs
Unable to access 4K footage frame-by-frame

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Bottom Line

Like I just said, the biggest flaw is something that is very small (not having a touchscreen). If that is the worst, then all in all, the user’s experience with the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ1000 is bound to be overwhelmingly positive.

Check the Price of Panasonic DMC-FZ1000 4k Camera on Amazon:
4.2 - 174 Reviews

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  • karl Ferron
    June 4, 2015 at 12:24 pm

    A very important component – frame by frame access to 4K video – IS available. I have one and can access FBF on 4K and 1080p, along with jpeg frame extraction. It’s quite frustrating to read a review where it’s the REVIEW that’s faulty and not the gear.


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