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What We Like

  • Good photo quality for its class; less highlight clipping than its peers
  • Very rugged body
  • Excellent LCD visibility
  • Some manual exposure control
  • Very fast AF in good light, brief shot-to-shot delays
  • Full-featured GPS with compass, manometer, and landmarks
  • Built-in Wi-Fi allows remote control and photo transfer with mobile devices
  • 1080/60p movie mode with stereo sound, long recording times
  • Strong battery life (with GPS/Wi-Fi off)

What We Don't Like

  • Details are smudged at base ISO (though likely not an issue for target audience)
  • Chromatic aberrations can be strong
  • Slow lens (in terms of maximum aperture)
  • Only two aperture choices in M mode
  • Weak flash
  • Overly complex Wi-Fi setup, with poor reception
  • In our testing, NFC feature did not work as advertised

Conclusion

The Lumix DMC-TS5/FT5 is the flagship model in Panasonic's rugged camera lineup. Panasonic has stuffed virtually every conceivable feature into the TS5, including a GPS, Wi-Fi, and NFC capability. While those are nice add-ons, performance and photo quality remain the most important 'features' a camera can have. In that regard, the DMC-TS5 rarely disappoints.

Design and Handling

The DMC-TS5 is a rectangular camera made almost entirely of metal. As soon as you pick it up you feel that it'll be able to take a beating. It can go up to 13 meters underwater, dropped from 2 meters, and have up to 100 kg of force applied to it. It's also freezeproof to -10C and dustproof.

The TS5's 4.6X, 28-128mm Leica-branded lens is actually one of its least impressive features. It's slow, with a maximum aperture range of F3.3-F5.9, and images display more troubling chromatic aberrations than many photographers would expect given the 'Leica' name emblazened on the front. Something else on the front of the camera that disappointed us was the built-in flash: it's quite weak. There's better news on the back side of the TS5, where you'll find one of the best LCDs in the compact camera world. It's sharp, but more importantly, incredibly easy to see outdoors or underwater.

Features

Like most of its rugged camera peers, the DMC-TS5 is focused more toward consumers than hardcore enthusiasts. Its great Intelligent Auto mode handles scene selection, face detection, plus intelligent contrast and sharpening features. There's also a large selection of scene modes - including a handy HDR option - and even more 'Creative Controls' (special effects). In a nod to the more advanced crowd, Panasonic has put a full manual exposure mode on the TS5. However, you're limited to just two aperture choices at any time - or rather equivalent apertures since the camera uses an ND filter.

One of the two major features on the DMC-TS5 is its built-in GPS, which is one of the better on the market. It'll locate itself in 15-30 seconds outdoors (with GPS assist data loaded), but like most cameras with GPS receivers, will struggle in the big city. The camera has a database of landmarks which can be automatically inserted into the camera's metadata. If you don't like what the camera picked as a landmark, you can change or remove it. The TS5 also features a compass so you'll never forget what direction in which you took a photo, plus a pressure sensor to keep track of altitude and depth.

The second feature, Wi-Fi, was a lot more frustrating to use than the GPS. Everything sounds great in theory - you can remotely control the camera, transfer photos as they're taken (or after the fact) and then forward them on to social networking websites or via e-mail - all from your smartphone. You can also send photos to DLNA-compatible TVs or your PC.

The best way to connect a smartphone or computer to the TS5 is to create an Ad-Hoc connection between the two. If you are logging onto a protected network, you'll have to type passwords (sometimes more than once) using a difficult-to-operate on-screen keyboard. A feature which was supposed to make connecting to your smartphone less painful is NFC (near-field communication). In theory, you'd just tap the back of your phone to the bottom of the camera and photos would be transferred (after pairing the two), but we couldn't get it to work reliably with firmware V1.2. It's worth a mention that the Wi-Fi reception is poor, which isn't surprising given how small the antenna is.

One last feature worth a quick mention is the DMC-TS5's movie mode. It can record up to 30 minutes of 1080/60p video with stereo sound, using the AVCHD codec. The optical zoom is available while recording, and the camera will keep your subject in focus. Panasonic should also be congratulated for including MPEG-4 support, for those who want something a bit easier to edit and share. Video quality is quite good for a compact camera.

Performance and Photo Quality

You generally won't do a lot of waiting when using the DMC-TS5. The camera starts up in under a second, and focuses very quickly in good light. Low light focusing isn't quite as impressive. After a photo is taken, you can take another in well under a second, with flash photos requiring about 3.5 seconds of charging time. There are a number of continuous shooting modes on the TS5, with the most impressive being a 5 fps mode with continuous AF (though it slows down after about a dozen shots) and a faster mode than can fire off seven shots at over 10 fps. Using the CIPA standard, the DMC-TS5's 370 shot per charge battery life number is excellent. However, once you turn on the GPS, automatic LCD brightness adjustment, or use Wi-Fi, expect the battery to be drained a lot quicker.

Photo quality is what we've come to expect from compact cameras with tiny, high resolution sensors. They look great when downsized or printed - which most TS5 owners will be doing - but if you view them at 100 percent, it's easy to find flaws. Those flaws include detail smudging (even at ISO 100) and a fair amount of chromatic aberrations. On the flip side, the TS5 exposes well and has less highlight clipping than your average compact. While we had some difficulty getting sharp photos underwater, the TS5 tended to avoid the bluish color cast that so many of its peers suffer from - and it offers a tool to reduce that effect if it ends up being an issue.

Final Thoughts

While the Lumix DMC-TS5 isn't a perfect camera, it handles its core functions well. It's responsive, easy to use, and produces photos that are on par with its peers. The Wi-Fi system needs some refining, and more importantly, the camera needs a faster lens and stronger flash. It is those last two issues that keep the DMC-TS5 from earning an award in this review.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 (Lumix DMC-FT5)
Category: Waterproof / Rugged Compact Camera
Build quality
Ergonomics & handling
Features
Exposure and focus accuracy
Image quality (jpeg)
Flash performance
Low light / high ISO performance
Optics
Performance (speed)
Movie / video mode
Connectivity
Value
PoorExcellent
Good for
Adventurous photographers looking for a rugged cameras with a great LCD, well-implemented GPS, and photo sharing via Wi-Fi. Video lovers will also appreciate the 1080/60p movie mode.
Not so good for
Photographers planning on taking a lot of flash and low light photos.
Overall score
72%
The Lumix DMC-TS5 is a good choice for those seeking a rugged camera with a robust feature set that includes a well-implemented GPS, plus Wi-Fi. The camera takes good quality photos for its class, has a great LCD, and offers a top-notch movie mode. However, its lens is on the slow side, and the flash is very weak. The Wi-Fi system could also be a lot more user-friendly.

Samples

There are 34 images in the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5/FT5 review samples gallery. Please do not reproduce any of these images on a website or any newsletter / magazine without prior permission (see our copyright page). We make the originals available for private users to download to their own machines for personal examination or printing (in conjunction with this review), we do so in good faith, please don't abuse it.

Unless otherwise noted images taken with no particular settings at full resolution. Because our review images are now hosted on the 'galleries' section of dpreview.com, you can enjoy all of the new galleries functionality when browsing these samples.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 Review Samples

32 images • Posted 12th July 2013 • View album
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Comments

Total comments: 70
Alki
By Alki (1 month ago)

I owned a TS3 and a Canon D10. The pictures of the TS3 were disappointing: skies were white and not blue, UW pictures were not clear, and the color was off. The D10 created much better pictures: colors were more real, and UW was absolutely great. I've used the D10 for 4 years. I'm wondering if the new sensor of the TS5 (cmos instead of ccd on the TS3) improves the quality of images?

0 upvotes
letable
By letable (2 months ago)

I bought this camera last year and used it in the swimming pool for the first time yesterday. But today in the middle of taking pictures the camera turn off on its own, I thought it was low on battery. But after charging the battery I still cannot turn it on. I am sure that I closed and locked the battery door properly. I dried it properly as the manual said so too after using. Other than fogged inner lens, the flash also had droplets of water in it. I bought it from USA but I lived in south east Asia, I have no warranty on this camera. Anyone have the same problem? Any solutions other than taking it to Panasonic?

0 upvotes
Thanos700
By Thanos700 (2 months ago)

I had a Canon 10D,a Pentax W90,a Panasonic TS3 and TS5.

I really liked the IQ of the Canon underwater!Outside medium and not so much the video quality. But i lent it to a friend who after the 1st dive,he just opened the battery door and water got inside! Never got the chance to send it to Canon for a service...

Pentax W90 was cheap.Really compact,but IQ was far behind.

Panasonic TS3 was really what i wanted! Long life battery,better wide-angle,better IQ,too many options in the menu and really amazing video quality!

What i liked most of all in TS3,is the option to control the minimum shutter speed! You can't expect to have a descent photo underwater,if your shutter-speed is under 1/125. So i could choose 1/125 and if i wanted i could bring up the ISO.If not,you can post process the brightness.

Even using the flash,this was very useful! With the other cameras the use of flash,came with the automatic slow shutter,(photo of fish under a rock etc)so photos shaken and useless!

0 upvotes
Thanos700
By Thanos700 (2 months ago)

I used the TS3 for 10months in daily snorkeling and taking photos from the surface to 10-12 meters. Never had a problem with leaking water. Only problem was the long video recording,outside in bright sun! The humidity inside the camera with the heat,was going to the lens and screen,but it is expected.

I went for the TS5,only cause i dropped the camera on marble surface and hit exactly on the cover of the lens! Next dive,water went in the lens,so i stopped using it underwater and i was far from the country i had bought it.Still works perfect,but...

So i went for the TS5. The screen is much better,Wi-Fi works fine with lap-top and my phone,but i can't say there is much to upgrade from TS3 or TS4 i guess.

I was thinking about the new Canon,but i didn't see anywhere the "key" feature for me,which is the shutter control,which is what makes the difference.

0 upvotes
Thanos700
By Thanos700 (2 months ago)

http://yourshot.nationalgeographic.com/photos/2037183/
http://yourshot.nationalgeographic.com/photos/2746263/
http://yourshot.nationalgeographic.com/photos/2746243/

0 upvotes
robgendreau
By robgendreau (5 months ago)

I just got a TS5 and so far like the little beast. I haven't had an underwater camera since Nikonos and Fuji film cameras. I used those in whitewater, not in diving. I'd say that I still wouldn't trust any of these in deep, salt, or forceful water without a case. It's just difficult to keep water out. I saw even more complaints about the AW series leaking.

The one feature I really wanted is a good screen for bright light, and the TS5 fills the bill. These are outdoor cameras; a crappy screen should be a fail (like my iPad outdoors...). I love the 60fps video, and the fast burst shooting. Very helpful for outdoors stuff, as is time lapse and remote shooting (nice for stalking wildlife). GPS acquisition seems to be slow, but I seem to have obtained geodata in the images even when the screen isn't reporting a position. Have to test that further. Makes a decent nanny cam if you have a good LAN connection. If you use GPS and/or wifi the battery drains quite quickly.

0 upvotes
DoctorZick
By DoctorZick (5 months ago)

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT5/DMC-TS5 video FOCUS TEST in dimly lit room. The sound of AutoFocus in operation that remained on the track can also be checked.
http://youtu.be/zsgOEeVnXV4

0 upvotes
J L Booth
By J L Booth (6 months ago)

Despite all the negative press many give the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 on 'poor image quality', I am fully satisfied with the camera.

Sure there are things I *wish* this camera had. But I can get those things by paying more for them, in a different package.

I've been in the photography business for over 40 years. And if there is one thing you learn fast it is this: "You will never find everything you want in one camera."

I purchased the TS5 for recording streamside shots - stills and video - when outdoors. Because of both its size and price - I was vastly more likely to record images and video with this camera than I would with one weighing in at $1000+ or 3lbs+.

I have those cameras. And when I want the extended quality and ability they offer, they fit my needs and hands quite well.

So, if you're looking for the parameters this camera provides - jump in. You will enjoy - so long as your expectations are in line with the offerings.

2 upvotes
Brian Steele
By Brian Steele (9 months ago)

DPreview, what would be interesting is a "long term" review on some of these cameras, as well as repair/service options for them. I own one of these Panasonics, the TS3, and the thing lasted just under two years before it died (Update: after 3 months in storage, it suddenly started working again!). Turns out that a few people I've met had the same or similar model - and ran into the same problem. OTOH, I know at least one person with one of the Pentax models and it's still going strong after several years of service.

1 upvote
PeteBertie
By PeteBertie (Aug 17, 2013)

Has anyone got NFC working, especially with a Samsung S3 mini?
I like the wifi remote and file transfer but NFC and S beam would be great.

0 upvotes
Timmbits
By Timmbits (Aug 5, 2013)

Now that underwater smartphones are out, I doubt people will even bother with these cameras anymore.

These cameras all produce horrible images, so why bother?

Definitely not worth it. Upgrade your smartphone instead.

2 upvotes
Timmbits
By Timmbits (Jul 20, 2013)

I'm still waiting for something perceivably better than the TS3(FT3) which was last roundup's winner. I'm not impressed with it's IQ, and am not more impressed with this years' cameras either.

Perhaps they will have to start introducing 1/1.17" sensor models - because after years of underwater cameras, they aren't getting any better!

Resolutions are going up, but IQ stays about the same.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
1 upvote
peevee1
By peevee1 (Jul 17, 2013)

When comparing image quality at high ISO, don't forget to set ISO of Olympus TG-2 and Pentax WG-3 at 1-2 stops lower.
And strange that the cameras were compared at different focal lengths, and rather long in all cases. These cameras will be mostly used to shoot wide-angle beach and underwater scenes, not tiny headshots.

1 upvote
Timmbits
By Timmbits (Jul 20, 2013)

I feel that they should all be tested at base ISO, to show them at their best.
You are right about focal length though: they should all be tested at an identical focal length that all can do - say 50mm equivalent. their IQ isn't good enough to appreciate in wide angle landscape shots, and we almost always zoom in at 2x-3x most of the time for most shots anyways, and at 50mm that is a good middle - not wide angle, not telephone - but at a length they should all be near their sweetspot and perform ok.

1 upvote
Timmbits
By Timmbits (Aug 5, 2013)

*telephoto LOL (sometimes my fingers have a mind of their own)

0 upvotes
Leandros S
By Leandros S (Jul 17, 2013)

Well, I can't wait for the Pentax one. It is still coming, right?

0 upvotes
KonstantinosK
By KonstantinosK (Jul 15, 2013)

I'm still not impressed with image quality of the FT5 and its peers. I used to have the FT3 and although it worked faultlessly for a whole summer snorkeling and shallow diving, and I enjoyed using it, the pictures where just a huge smudge. I didn't have particularly high expectations but I expected the pics to be about as good as from my sweet DMC-TZ5. They weren't. The best picture I managed to have after a lot of post processing is probably this:

http://www.dpreview.com/challenges/Entry.aspx?ID=670732

I sold the camera in e-bay by autumn, hoping for something better to come up (with RAW). I'm still waiting...

1 upvote
primozp
By primozp (Jul 15, 2013)

Agree with you, image quality of FT5 and of other UW cameras could be better, however, FT5 produces better UW photos than other UW cameras, and most importantly, with less effort.

Maybe there was something wrong with your FT3, because I have totaly different experience. More than 90% of my UW photos (taken with Panasonic FT cameras) are totally acceptable. All were recorded during snorkeling and freediving sessions up to 18 meters deep. Photos are only slightly post processed with Picasa3.

Check my UW photos taken in Egypt in june 2013:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/primozp/sets/72157633781549649/

2 upvotes
KonstantinosK
By KonstantinosK (Jul 15, 2013)

I'd happily buy another UW camera if it had RAW, even without WiFi or GPS, which I don't need. I'd like to control the smudginess of the smudge in my smudgy pictures my self, please! (And WB for that matter...)

3 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Jul 15, 2013)

Fewer pixels would help too. Say around 10MP.

0 upvotes
primozp
By primozp (Jul 15, 2013)

Agree!!!

0 upvotes
Timmbits
By Timmbits (Jul 20, 2013)

I have a TS3 and I am also very disappointed with the image quality. I thought that the editor's highest ratings in the last UW roundup could be trusted. immensely disappointing.

0 upvotes
primozp
By primozp (Jul 14, 2013)

In last 8 years I was owner of 14 underwater cameras http://www.flickr.com/photos/primozp/sets/72157633756660405/ I also have the opportunity to test almost all other UW cameras. In 2010 I even spent my holidays in Egypt with 2 cameras: FT2 and 8010 http://public.fotki.com/Primoz/panasonic-ft2-ts2-v. 8010 very disappointed me and so does TG-1 few years later. TG cameras without a doubt has better optics, but in all other respects FT/TS cameras are better.

In last years I dive solely on breath, up to 18 meters deep, so seamless automatic operation is desirable and necessary, because down there I do not have time (and breath) to adjusting the camera.

So, I'm sure that for underwater use Panasonic FT5/TS5 camera is the best on the market (at the moment)!

My (mostly underwater) photos and videos taken with
Panasonic, Olympus and Pentax compact UW cameras:
photos @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/primozp/sets/
videos @ http://www.youtube.com/user/PrimozP/videos?view=1&flow=list&sort=dd

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Jul 14, 2013)

The Panasonic isn't rated for 18 meters.

The slower lens on the Panasonic lets in less light than say the Olympus TG2's F2.0 lens. And that faster lens means that you don't have to use as high an ISO.

What is it you like about the Panasonic tough cameras?

0 upvotes
primozp
By primozp (Jul 15, 2013)

Neither FT4 and neither FT5 aren't rated 18 meters, but both of them survived many 40 seconds long (free)dives to this depth.

TG cameras without a doubt has faster lens, but in all other respects FT/TS cameras are better, they simply produces better UW photos and in particular, better movies. FT5 produces better UW photos than all other UW cameras (even better than FT4), and most importantly, with less effort.

Faster lens means lower ISO, true, but it is interesting that all TG UW photos I saw, were taken at F bigger than 2.8. Camera selects F2.0 very rarely and almost never underwater, not even when the light conditions are poor.

In any case, if we want to take acceptable UW photos with any of this compact UW cameras, weather should be fine, sun should be very bright and water must be clear. Also, using zoom in UW conditions is not an option.

Considering all the above facts, the advantage of TG camera quickly melts.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
1 upvote
phongnguyen
By phongnguyen (Jul 14, 2013)

Marianas Trench is the only test that matters.

2 upvotes
John Driggers
By John Driggers (Jul 14, 2013)

It's time for DPR (and other camera review sites) to develop some standard terms and definitions when describing increasingly popular WiFi features in cameras. Too often phrases like "control the camera via WiFi" are used when you can't control the camera via Wifi-all you can do is access one or two features like the zoom and the shutter release. Perhaps something like:

WiFi File Transfer-you can move images from the camera to a smart phone, tablet or computer wirelessly.

WiFI Remote Triggering-You can trip the shutter and access limited camera features via WiFi (list accessible features).

WiFi Tethering-Full control of the cameras essential features, including AF, ISO, Aperture, Shutter Speed, Exposure Compensation, Bracketing, Flash Setting, Etc (essentially everything on an Olympus SCP menu as an example).

Notes for the trolls: 1) if WiFi is unimportant to you, there is no need to tell us. 2) The options above are an example and NOT intended to be comphrehensive.

0 upvotes
Timmbits
By Timmbits (Jul 20, 2013)

some of us couldn't care less about wifi, some of us care a little bit, and some like it a lot.

when dealing with underwater photos, ergonomics/controls, poor image quality when out of the water and all the other stuff one needs to examine and worry about, wifi is really at the bottom of the list of our concerns.

2 upvotes
Actrurus
By Actrurus (Jul 14, 2013)

My DMC-FT2 is now badly corroded, I wouldn't buy another waterproof Panasonic for this reason. The rear case, where there is any edge to the alloy, is corroded, especially around the buttons and dials. Still works though, but looks ugly. Out of warranty, so Panasonic not interested in helping out.

0 upvotes
nicend
By nicend (11 months ago)

I have the same model camera (Panasonic DMCFT2) and have yet to experience any corrosion at all despite taking it into the ocean, into pools, and accidentally leaving it underwater for more than three times what it is rated for (I may have done that quite a few times).

The reason that my camera has no corrosion is because I frequently washed salt water off the camera with normal tap water after usage (salt water corrodes nearly anything). The manual recommends soaking the camera in tap water after any contact with salt water, and believe me it is a must if you want to keep your camera looking pristine.

0 upvotes
monomondo
By monomondo (Jul 14, 2013)

Reading the verdicts it's hard to figure on why the Panasonic finishes behind the Nikon.

It might need a stronger flash and faster lens, but it has a high visibility screen vs the Nikon oled screen which you've said makes it "nearly impossible to see outdoors and underwater"

Now that is a pretty fundamental basic to get so badly wrong.

Surely this failure should have weighed much more heavily against the Nikon.

For me I think the better battery life of the Panasonic trumps the excellent full GPS mapping of the Nikon too.

Pity it seems there's not one camera in the group as tested so far with all the sweet and none of the bitter.

Comment edited 8 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
livefierce
By livefierce (Jul 19, 2013)

I agree with your comment. As I read the review for the Nikon, the tone suggested to me it wasn't going to rate very well, and here thus far it's the best rated. (Though being new to DPReview.com, I'm not very familiar with the overall tone, so I very easily could be mis-reading). Either way, I too think cameras built for "rugged" use, i.e. outdoor/underwater, that have such flawed displays *outdoors and underwater* perhaps shouldn't score so highly.

But that's just me. :)

0 upvotes
colacat
By colacat (Jul 14, 2013)

for people who's going to buy the ts5, I would suggest you to hold on, and get a canon G series camera +underwater housing instead. I personally own a TS3, the first time, i use it 5 mins underwater with no problem, but on the second time, there was leak into the battery compartment, I pretty sure that I check if I have the button switch to locked position, I ended up back home with not even single underwater picture. The best thing is , Panasonic replace it for free, I then spent another couple hundred $$ for the housing for the ts3.

0 upvotes
Paul Farace
By Paul Farace (Jul 14, 2013)

My TS4, purchased last August is sitting in a mailing box to be shipped to the Panasonic repair facility in Texas. On its second trip under water since it was purchased (and never more than six feet deep) it began to flash its rear panel display. Not a total flooding of the interior, but apparently a short in one of the control circuits. It didn't totally stop working but you couldn't do much with it ... I didn't pay $265 for this. Let's see what Panasonic says. I've used underwater cameras since my Nikon Action Touch 35mm in 1998 and I think I know something about maintaining O-ring seals... (I am skipper of a WW II submarine memorial!) All the Wi-Fi bells and whistles are fine, but if the camera fails at its primary mission, you have an expensive paperweight.

0 upvotes
Gully Foyle
By Gully Foyle (Jul 13, 2013)

The yellow fish is on all three reviews, Olympus, Nikon and now Panasonic! You had a contract or something with this pro? :)

Great reviews all three, BTW.

2 upvotes
SirLataxe
By SirLataxe (Jul 13, 2013)

Quoted from the review:

"As is the case with all compact cameras, you'd be able to get technically better results from the TS5 if Raw mode was available, but that's not a feature you'll find in the rugged/waterproof class, for understandable reasons".

What are these "understandable reasons" to omit RAW from such cameras? I have the previous model and I want it to take RAW so I can use it for wet/sandy beach landscapes without suffering the tedious jpeg smudging of detail.

And what is the point of having 16MP if any detail captured by this pixel-dense sensor is smeared away by the jpeg processor yet cannot be got-at via RAW?

SirLataxe, also not requiring the spurious wifi and GPS stuff. (What next - a built-in printer to make postage stamp-size prints)?

4 upvotes
CameraLabTester
By CameraLabTester (Jul 13, 2013)

Now if these sort of gadgets can make a telephone call... wow, are they gonna blow the market!

.

1 upvote
Jefftan
By Jefftan (Jul 13, 2013)

Dpreview is not helping people by not emphasizing the slow lens of all these camera except TG-2 and WG-3

Giving similar score to these slow lens camera as TG-2,WG-3 is really not doing any good to the photographic community

They should get a much lower score to let everyone know that these are outdated and obsolete

7 upvotes
AllBrands
By AllBrands (Jul 12, 2013)

Any chance these cameras were actually tested to see how waterproof they really are? There are loads of consumer complaints about Panasonic waterproof cameras that got water inside and failed at, allegedly, the first hint of any water. Panasonic then denies warranty coverage claiming abuse or user error in each case. Sure there are a lot of dummies out there but many of the complaints I've read sound very credible. Doubly so in light of the many horror stories I've read time and again about Panasonic warranty support in general here in the USA. Just saying - I don't care how good the image quality is if the camera fails the first time it's used as designed. It would be good to test that too, no?

Comment edited 27 seconds after posting
2 upvotes
Barney Britton
By Barney Britton (Jul 12, 2013)

We tested all these products underwater and had no issues with the Panasonic.

3 upvotes
Gesture
By Gesture (Jul 12, 2013)

Yes, but did you take it down the Marianas Trench.

4 upvotes
CaseyComo
By CaseyComo (Jul 13, 2013)

Marianas Trench is the only test that matters.

7 upvotes
paul_kew
By paul_kew (Jul 15, 2013)

How about the drop test etc?

0 upvotes
nicend
By nicend (11 months ago)

I have two Panasonic FT2 and have experienced no issues with water, despite leaving one of them underwater for close to 3 hours over the 'rated' usage. I have a friend with an FT1 that hasn't had any difficulties.

I suspect that either they had a batch with misaligned seals, or users that failed to 'lock' the camera's ports shut(or had something caught in the seals like sand or grit). Not sure which, but either way I have yet to have an issue despite the horror stories.

OTH, complaints about water entry issues with waterproof cameras is common and I don't believe that there is a single model that hasn't had a failure. Heck I've even seen complaints about the newer GoPro's seals failing. So unfortunately you kinda just have to risk it and choose a decent brand and hope they have good warranty support.

0 upvotes
snegron2
By snegron2 (Jul 12, 2013)

I own a TS1 and a TS3. My biggest gripe is the location of the lens. I wish Panasonic would move the lens to the middle or center of the body. Every time I reach for the camera to get it out of either my pocket or a small pouch I end up grabbing the corner where the lens is located thereby smudging the lens with my finger.

Other than the bad positioning of the lens I am quite happy with the TS3. The TS5 seems nice, but I will wait for the next model to upgrade; maybe Panasonic will move the lens to a better spot by then.

5 upvotes
FreedomLover
By FreedomLover (Jul 12, 2013)

Wouldn't you usually place it grip up into the pocket?

1 upvote
snegron2
By snegron2 (Jul 12, 2013)

The grip on the TS3 is not very pronounced (it is non-existent on the TS1). Many times in a rush I place it in my pocket without paying attention to what direction the grip is in. Also, when I hand the camera to someone I would say 99% of the time they grab it by the corner where the lens is located!

2 upvotes
TacticDesigns
By TacticDesigns (Jul 13, 2013)

There are pros and cons either way. Have it in the center . . . and it may be easier to center the camera . . . have the lens towards one corner, its easier to stick it into tiny spots where dSLRs can't go. Better solution . . . buy one of each. <grin>

2 upvotes
Mikhail Tal
By Mikhail Tal (Jul 12, 2013)

DPR Here are the cameras I want you to make TOP PROPRITY for review as soon as they are announced (roughly in the following order):

Olympus OM-D model(s)
Panasonic GX7
Sony NEX-7N
Any other interchangeable lens cameras from Olympus, Panasonic, and Sony

Thank you.

4 upvotes
Simon Joinson
By Simon Joinson (Jul 12, 2013)

i assume you checked with everyone else?

13 upvotes
snegron2
By snegron2 (Jul 12, 2013)

You forgot to mention the Panasonic G5. I'm still waiting patiently for the review of the G5! :)

3 upvotes
Seagull TLR
By Seagull TLR (Jul 12, 2013)

@Simon No, he didn't :) :) :)

1 upvote
Mikhail Tal
By Mikhail Tal (Jul 12, 2013)

Simon I am not claiming to speak for "everyone else", my comment is meant to be taken at face value.

2 upvotes
Stephen Scharf
By Stephen Scharf (Jul 13, 2013)

I'd just like to see the Fuji X100S review, for goodness sakes. Or, they could send me the camera and *I'll* write the review. At least it the darned thing will get done.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 2 minutes after posting
1 upvote
tonywong
By tonywong (Jul 12, 2013)

Is it me or does the photo of the camera on the sand look very 'flat'?

5 upvotes
Simon Joinson
By Simon Joinson (Jul 12, 2013)

well it's not a real photo. That's my 10 minute photoshop skills you're dissing :)

Comment edited 52 seconds after posting
13 upvotes
FreedomLover
By FreedomLover (Jul 12, 2013)

They used cheap CGI, tonywong, without even adjusting the perspective. The sand looks like an office carpet :-)

Ah sorry, Simon, I assumed Panasonic made it :-)

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
2 upvotes
TacticDesigns
By TacticDesigns (Jul 13, 2013)

WARNING: Random Thought!

Since this is a website about photography (cameras), maybe the main shots should be pictures, not images that have been edited too much with photoshop.

Maybe even go so far as trying to take the main shot of the camera with a 2nd body of the same camera, so its mug shot can only be as good as the camera itself is?

Just a goofy idea . . .

<grin>

3 upvotes
arhmatic
By arhmatic (Jul 15, 2013)

I think you should stick with real photos everywhere in your reviews.
Like in one of your previous reviews, you were showing a camera floating in water, obviously photoshopped, with a note "camera does not actually float"...

Why do this??? Looks terribly amateurish.

2 upvotes
JohnEwing
By JohnEwing (Jul 12, 2013)

I'm even happier now that I bought the TS3

1 upvote
maksa
By maksa (Jul 12, 2013)

I own the TS3 and I am rather dissapointed because of its incorrect auto white balance algorithms. Almost all pictures shot with AWB setting are too blue.

1 upvote
Random Asian Guy
By Random Asian Guy (Jul 13, 2013)

I agree, I had the TS3 for my underwater and snapshot needs and really didn't like how the photos turned out. It wasn't even good enough to give away to my brother so I gave it to my brother in-law :)

I actually use gopro for underwater and NEX-5 has been demoted to snapshots when going out.

2 upvotes
mpgxsvcd
By mpgxsvcd (Jul 12, 2013)

One very important thing to remember is that all of the other under water cameras are at F4.8 or F4.9 at full telephoto. This one is at F5.9. That is about 1/2 stop disadvantage for the TS5/FT5.

Underwater, light is pretty much everything. Some of the other cameras start at F2.0 wide angle where this one is F3.3. That is an absolutely huge difference in cameras that are ALWAYS in low light and really can't use more than ISO 800.

Give me an F1.4-F2.0 24mm-50mm underwater camera. With scuba depth water protection, RAW shooting, 1080p @ 60 FPS video, and full manual controls for stills and video and I will hand you my $600.

I don't care what size sensor it has. Under water all I need is a really fast lens and RAW capabilities and I can do the rest.

Comment edited 48 seconds after posting
1 upvote
BJN
By BJN (Jul 12, 2013)

The one's f/5.9 at full telephoto. I've never used telephoto under water. None of the cameras in this class are really designed for anything but snorkeling. You're asking for a new class of underwater digital cameras. A digital "Nikonos" (at least in terms of a capable camera that doesn't require a dive housing) could perhaps find a successful sales niche. But not at $600 and not as compact as these cameras.

2 upvotes
Adrian Van
By Adrian Van (Jul 12, 2013)

Considering the sensor size, video was indeed very good! Panasonic always knew how to do video in compact cameras well. Real world samples shown at 100 and 160 iso on a bright sunny summer day look very good and crisp, including the first portrait of girl. Digital smearing at much higher iso/low light. For the intended audience, for beach, vacation, outdoors on a rainy day, or underwater use, perhaps a very good choice for some.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 5 minutes after posting
3 upvotes
Red5TX
By Red5TX (Jul 12, 2013)

Why are there no rugged cameras that shoot raw?

4 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Jul 12, 2013)

In a specialized case that costs as much as say the Panasonic LX7.

1 upvote
InTheMist
By InTheMist (Jul 13, 2013)

Yeah, give me a rugged raw-shooting camera with an f2 lens at the wide end and I'd pretty much declare a winner.

1 upvote
robgendreau
By robgendreau (5 months ago)

How 'bout a Canon D10 with CHDK? Does DNG. The D20 is in alpha.

0 upvotes
Stephen Scharf
By Stephen Scharf (Jul 12, 2013)

Nice, and thank you for posting this informative review.

Now, how about that Fuji X100S review? ;-)

Comment edited 29 seconds after posting
3 upvotes
Total comments: 70