(aka the FZ38 in some regions) was highly regarded in its time -- which was all of a year ago. The superzoomer won shootouts
along with the hearts of many, but now it's being retired in favor of a new camera, the DMC-FZ45 (aka the FZ40). This one moves up to a 14 megapixel CCD sensor but, according to PhotographyBlog
's review, doesn't suffer the resulting decrease in image quality you might expect. Its 24x, 25 - 600mm zoom lens is highly rated, as is the 720p30 mode. A total winner, then, right? Yes -- except that it doesn't compare to Panasonic's own recently-released FZ100
, which does all that and throws in 1080p recording, better burst-shooting, and a few other niceties. That camera is, however, $100 more than the $399 FZ45, so you're going to have to let your budget be your guide here.