Panasonic Lumix TS5This review will cover one of the bestselling new digital models being introduced that may be able to bribe some users to pull themselves away from their smartphones. The new Panasonic Lumix TS5 (known as the FT5 outside of North America) is the upgrade to the Panasonic TS4. It has some really great offerings to users that are interested in using it underwater.

Reviews show the features include being waterproof to a depth of 43ft, shockproof from a height of 6.6ft, freezeproof to 14 degrees Fahrenheit and dustproof. In line with competing with the Olympus brands of tough cameras as it also boasts pressure resistance up to 220lbs. Additionally, it has a 3 inch LCD screen, CMOS image sensor with 16MP and Full HD recording.

This is an exciting find because according to the review, it is specifically designed for active outdoor use, especially for water-related activities. You can definitely take it anywhere and take photographs of anything whether on dry land, underwater or in inclement weather. It has GPS that provides real-time location information for geo-tagging of photos, GLONASS (Global Navigation Satellite System) which provides better satellite accuracy and for easy photo and video sharing WiFi and NFC (Near Field Communication).

Further, the altimeter and barometer features show and record altitude, barometric pressure and orientation data. It will also work while underwater. Consumer reviews indicate they agree with the manufacturer that this is a great camera for swimming, snorkeling and diving.

It also has O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer) that compensates for hand-shake that will reduce blurred photos. This point and shoot does the technical setting so you can compose your shot and capture every important moment. The detection and correction functions will go to work to provide some beautiful photos and videos that will impress your family and friends.

Features of the Panasonic Lumix TS5

  •  16.1 MP with CMOS image sensor
  • 3″ TFT LCD with 460,000 dots
  • 1080/60p HD video (AVCHD/MPEG-4)
  • Up to 10 FPS continuous shooting (7 images max./full resolution) plus 40 FPS high-speed burst
  • Built-in GPS, WiFi and Altimeter
  • Pressure resistance of 200 lb/100 kgf
  • Waterproof to 43’/13m
  • Shockproof from 6.6’/2m
  • Freezeproof to 14°F/-10°C
  • Built-in Stereo Microphone
  • Built-in Flash
  • Image Stabilization
  • Built- in- Memory Approx. 10MB
  • Dimensions:   4.3 x 1.1 x 2.6 inches; 7.5 oz
  • Battery Life: 370 shots
  • Colors: Orange, Silver, Blue & Black

What’s In The Box

  • Panasonic TS 5
  • Battery Pack
  • Battery Charger
  • USB Cable (Proprietary connector)
  • AC Charger Cable
  • Wrist Strap
  • CD-ROM
  • Owner ManualsBest Waterproof Camera 2014

Feature Details of The Panasonic Lumix TS5

3″ color TFT 460K dot LCD Monitor

The three inch size of the TS5′s LCD screen is new and larger from the 2.7 inch screen of the TS4. It makes it easier for users to review photos and videos. Based on shooting conditions, the camera automatically adjusts the brightness in 11 step increments. Also, the monitor has been treated with anti-reflective coating to ensure excellent visibility, even in bright sunlight. The resolution on the camera has been doubled from the original 230k to 460k.

16.1-Megapixel CMOS Sensor

The new 16.1-megapixel High Sensitivity CMOS sensor delivers high quality image recording. It is new in this model and an update from the 12.1MP of the previous TS4 model. There is also built-in HDR (High Dynamic Range) that is designed to combine multiple exposures to capture image quality. To say it another way,  several shots of the same scene are taken with slightly different exposures.  The camera automatically combines them into one image that captures a wide range of tones, from shadows to highlights. This single image as a result of HDR has a wider range of tones than can be captured in one exposure.   The TS5 also shoots 2.5 times faster than the TS4 with continuous shooting at 10fps (frames per second) versus the TS4 at 3.7 fps (frames per second).

GPS, GLONASS and Altimeter

It supports GPS (Global Positioning System) as well as GLONASS (Global Navigation Satellite System) which provides better accuracy with the use of increased satellite access. GPS shows the name of the Country/Region, State/Prov/County, County/Township, City/Town/Village and Landmark using the internal data that provides real-time location information when taking photos.  Further,   GPS logging permits the TS5 to memorize travel distances which can be displayed on the Google Earth application. Users can take advantage of Altimeter logging by observing and recording altitude, barometric pressure and orientation data. The barometer also works for underwater depth.

WiFi, NFC and Remote Camera Control

The WiFi feature is new for the TS5 and provides users the ability to easily review and share images on social media websites. Also, there is NFC (Near Field Communication) where you can change your smartphone or tablet into a remote control by touching the devices and the camera together.  You can also review images and play back videos right from your smartphone or tablet.

Transferring and sharing photos is easy because it can be done (with the appropriate app) just by touching the camera to a friend’s smartphone or tablet.  To permit remote controls and shooting, users will need to install the Panasonic Image App.  Another feature is wireless TV playback where users can share photos on a compatible large screen television.

Stereo Microphone

A stereo mic is new on the TS5 which means video sound quality will be more realistic because it’s being broadcast in Dolby Digital.

Tough and Rugged Features

There are two changes that were made to the the TS5 in this area and that was to slightly increase waterproofing to a depth of 43ft, instead of 40ft from the previous model. Panasonic also added pressure resistance up to 220lbs because of a reinforced rib structure in its internal design.  So, basically the manufacturer is saying you can take it anywhere with you whether on land, inclement weather or underwater, it  should perform. Consumers should review the manual which will advise that although the camera can be taken down to 43ft, it cannot be underwater for more than 60 minutes. After that, the waterproof seals may become compromised and users may experience some leaking.

Extended Battery Life

Battery life on the TS5 increased slightly by 20 %.  Users can shoot approximately 370 pictures on a single battery charge which is more than the 310 from the TS4. The charging cable that comes with the camera is a USB cable, and looks like a mini HDMI cable, but it is not. It is a proprietary cable that will only work with the Panasonic TS5.

Size & Design

The TS5 is slightly larger and heavier than the TS4. What’s also interesting is that Panasonic has given the camera color codes. For example, the TS5D, the letter D stands for the color orange,  K is the color Black, A is the color Blue and S is the color Silver. The colors are depicted by the letter that follows the  model number.

Memory

Internal memory is 10MB, down from the TS4’s 20MB.  SD Memory Card, SDHC Memory Card, SDXC Memory Card can still be used in this model.

Consumer Reviews

As of this date, there are 159 consumer reviews on Amazon since the camera made its debut in January 2013. Most consumers that have reviewed this model rated this new edition to the Panasonic line of tough cameras as a pretty good point and shoot camera with good picture clarity on land and underwater. The WiFi and video recording are popular features with consumers.  Most users complain about camera leaks after limited use,  photo quality was average and customer service. Read here for more reviews, comments and questions.

 Average Rating is 4.1 for the Panasonic Lumix TS5

Panasonic Lumix TS5DPROs

  • WiFi & NFC are nice features
  • Picture and video recording quality is good
  • Easy to operate, durable
  • Has nice battery life
  • Plenty of manual settings and options
  • Portable, can carry in your pocket
  • Great all in one camera especially for underwater shots

CONs

  • Have to remove battery from camera & plug into charger
  • Has proprietary charging cord
  • Customer Service
  • Geocode issues where it’s difficult to interpret the values
  • Movies are split up into multiple files in multiple folders on the memory chip; means files are not easy to move
  • Slippery grip, should purchase float strap if going to use underwater
  • Costs associated with maintenance on the waterproof feature on the camera
  • Picture quality okay

Summary

As you can see, my Panasonic TS5 review shows that it looks the same as its predecessors and still has the same great colors from the previous model. The updated features all seem to be an effort to enhance the customer’s experience with the camera.  The most notable updates are the WiFi & NFC, battery life, pressure resistance and enlargement of the LCD screen. Most of the waterproof cameras on the market are offering WiFi as a feature in an effort to remain competitive with smartphones because  they make the sharing of photos and videos so easy.

Most of these cameras, including this one still have problems with leaking when taken underwater. Some users have complained of leaks that have occurred in 3-5 feet of water. Also, there really isn’t an agreement in the quality of the photos and video. I find both not to be very clear, the colors are bright and look correct, but the photos appear to be washed out so to speak.

Basically, if this review covered what you are looking for in a camera, including the underwater feature, you will be satisfied. If you’re one that reads all the reviews, even those are not informative enough to help you choose which camera to buy.  I think you have to consider the reviews and also come to terms with your camera expectations. They should be in line with what you’re purchasing and how you plan to use the camera.

The TS5 is one of the cameras where the price is not determined by the model color. So, you will pay the same price for the camera no matter which color you choose. It will cost you some money to maintain the camera’s waterproof reliability. If you use the camera underwater frequently, after about a year Panasonic recommends users have the seals replaced. Users can purchase a DIY kit from the manufacturer that will recondition the door seal. Or users can send in their camera and for a nominal fee for the repairs and maintenance will be done by Panasonic technicians.

Accessories

Must Have Accessory Kit For Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5

Wasabi Power Battery for Panasonic TS5

Additional Accessories for TS5

Video

Checkout the video (4:26) below on the un-boxing of the Panasonic Lumix TS5. The reviewer provides some good information about accessories for the camera which also includes the items that come in the box with the camera.  The reviewer did not provide information regarding the underwater performance of the camera, but explained what the buyer should expect to receive when purchasing the Lumix TS5.

 

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Filed under: Best Waterproof Camera Reviews

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