Panasonic FZ18

My FZ18 Settings

Written by Gail Bjork

Settings I’ve found most suitable for general photo-taking with the Panasonic FZ18.

Panasonic FZ28

I don’t care for the factory default settings of most digital cameras, so I change them as soon as I get a camera. These are the settings I generally use for the Panasonic FZ18.

  • Shooting mode: P
  • Image quality: 8MP/fine (or 5MP if I want to use the Extended Optical Zoom)
  • Focus mode: single area (center)
  • Metering: Multiple
  • Image Stabilization: Mode 2 (Mode 1 when when shooting at long tele)
  • Sensitivity: ISO 100
  • Exposure Compensation: -2/3
  • Picture Adjust: Contrast -2, Sharpness -1, Saturation 1, Noise Reduction -2
  • Continuous Auto Focus: OFF (I like to control where the camera focuses)
  • Auto focus assist lamp: ON
  • White balance: AUTO
  • AF/AE Lock: AE
  • MF Assist: MF1
  • Play on LCD: ON
  • Mode Dial display: ON
  • Dial Display: ON
  • Power Save: 5 minutes
  • Digital Zoom: OFF
  • Auto LCD Review: One second; turn OFF when taking photos in rapid succession

The filter size for the FZ18 is 46mm. If you buy a polarizer, a “slim” one is recommended to avoid vignetting.

Important: I use these settings most of the time but change them as needed. Changes are made according to the subject, quality and direction of light and whether photos are taken inside or out.

Photos by Gail taken with the Panasonic FZ18

About the author

Gail Bjork

Gail Bjork, who is passionate about digital photography, is the owner and editor of Digicamhelp.Gail is the author of three illustrated ebooks about digital photography. A number of her photos and digital photography related articles appear at other websites.In 2006, a series of her photos, People in the Louvre, were exhibited at the Underground Photo Gallery
in Iisalmi Finland. Eight of her photos taken in the Florida scrub are on permanent exhibition at Parrish Medical Center in Titusville, Florida.Gail served twelve years as an elected member of The School Board of Palm Beach County, Florida, one of the largest school districts in the U.S. She has also been the editor of a small town newspaper and a free-lance writer. Gail and her husband owned and ran several small businesses.


  • Dave, I’m not sure what you mean by backlight. Do you mean the LCD. I no longer own the FZ18 (sorry I sold it) but checked out some images and, unless I’m missing it, can’t really tell from them if there is anything else that would light up. Can you be more specific?

  • Hi Gail
    I do like your setting, thanks for posting.
    I have just taken my fz18 out of cupboard.
    Playing with the settings etc.
    I noticed the backlight is on all the time in AI mode.
    Even when pointing near to direct sunlight.
    I can not remeber if this is the case or not.
    Its only in AI mode both screen and v/f.
    any ideas?

  • Gene, yes when you use AE or AF lock, it stays locked until you press the shutter button, so you can lock focus or exposure then recompose the photo before taking the shot. On most cameras, AF/AF Lock must be reset again after taking the photo. When the flash is on, use the same technique to lock flash exposure.