Panasonic Lumix TS5 Review

 
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Basic Specifications
Full model name: Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5
Resolution: 16.10 Megapixels
Sensor size: 1/2.33"
Lens: 4.60x zoom
(28-128mm eq.)
Viewfinder: LCD
ISO: 100-3200
Shutter: 30-1/1300
Max Aperture: 3.3
Dimensions: 4.3 x 2.7 x 1.1 in.
(109 x 67 x 29 mm)
Weight: 7.5 oz (213 g)
includes batteries
MSRP: $400
Availability: 03/2013
Manufacturer: Panasonic
Full specs: Panasonic TS5 specifications
16.10
Megapixels
4.60x zoom
1/2.33"
size sensor
image of Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5
Front side of Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 digital camera Back side of Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 digital camera Top side of Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 digital camera Left side of Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 digital camera Right side of Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS5 digital camera

TS5 Summary

The Panasonic TS5 waterproof camera should thrill photo geeks who love advanced features and functionality. It's the first camera in its class to deliver advanced Wi-Fi and NFC capabilities that includes remote capture when paired with a smartphone or tablet. Moreover, the TS5 boasts full 1080p HD video recording at 60 frames per second and 10fps full-res still burst shooting. Unfortunately, the TS5's image quality proved to be mediocre overall, and its dedicated underwater mode photos came out somewhat flat with muted colors. Still, it could be the right compact waterproof model for those who demand the latest high tech gadgetry.

Pros

Advanced Wi-Fi and Near-Field Communications for easy image sharing and even remote shooting (a first for a waterproof compact); Improved ruggedness; Manual exposure mode; Fast cycle times; 10fps continuous burst shooting at full resolution; Full 1080p HD video at up to 60p; Excellent battery life.

Cons

Mediocre still image quality; Slow startup; Slower-than-average autofocus; Choppy MP4 (most Web-friendly format) video quality.

Price and availability

The Panasonic LUMIX DMC-TS5 became available in March 2013 in orange, blue, silver and black colors for a retail price of US$400.

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For our review of the Panasonic TS5, see our
2013 Best Waterproof Cameras Shootout,
where we compare the TS5 against five top competitors
and identify which waterproof camera may be right for you.

Panasonic TS5 Overview

by
Updated 10/21/2013

The Panasonic Lumix TS5, the company's latest top-of-the-line rugged, weatherproof camera comes packed with features including advanced Wi-Fi and Near-Field Communication technologies, an underwater Torch Light, and manual exposure control, among many others. At the heart of the revamped camera is a new 16.1-megapixel, high-sensitivity MOS sensor that's bolstered by improved POWER O.I.S. image stabilization; both are designed for better low-light and fast-action shooting in both still and video modes. And for underwater shooting, a new red-color reproduction feature was added to capture the true colors of the submerged world and reduce the drab, flat, grays often delivered in the depths of the ocean -- or neighborhood pool.

Lens. The Panasonic TS5's Leica DC Vario-Elmar lens features a 4.6x optical zoom that ranges from 28 to 128mm equivalents, and is covered by anti-fog glass. Its maximum aperture ranges from f/3.3 in wide angle to f/5.9 in telephoto. On the other side of the camera resides a 3-inch, 460,000-dot LCD screen with anti-reflective coating and a near 100-percent field of view.

Ruggedness. The Panasonic TS5 boasts some new rugged credentials, now waterproof to a depth of 43 feet, shockproof from a drop of 6.6 feet, freeze proof down to 14 degrees Fahrenheit, and pressure-resistant to 220 pounds. It features built-in GPS, which lets you automatically record and track your location. There's also a built-in altimeter/depth gauge, compass and barometer.

Wi-Fi. One new feature that sets it apart from last year's TS4 is its advanced Wi-Fi and NFC capabilities, including one-touch connectivity and remote capture with a smart device running the LUMIX remote app. Being able to use your phone or tablet as a viewfinder and remote on an action-oriented camera marks a first for the industry, and presents intriguing shooting possibilities.

Other features. Another adventure-friendly feature is continuous shooting in full-resolution that goes as fast as 10 frames per second (max of seven images captured), and at reduced resolution High-speed Burst as fast as 40fps. Scene modes include: Sports, Snow, Beach&Snorkeling, Advanced Underwater, Panorama Shot, Portrait, Soft Skin, Scenery, Night Portrait, Night Scenery, Handheld Night Shot, HDR, Food, Baby1/2, Pet, Sunset, High Sensitivity, Starry Sky, Through Glass, and 3D Photo. The camera also has a manual exposure mode allowing you to select shutter speed and aperture, however the lens only has a two-step aperture. As for video recording, the Panasonic TS5 shoots in Full HD at 1080p at up to 60 fps (AVCHD) with stereo sound, and an LED "Torch Light" is available to illuminate movies. Battery life is CIPA-rated at 370 shots per charge, which is excellent.

Like many other Panasonic LUMIX cameras introduced this year, the TS5 incorporates the manufacturer's latest raft of filters and fun modes, dubbed Creative Control and Creative Retouch. Creative Control lets you apply filters (such as Retro or One Point Color) before you take the image, and Creative Retouch such effects as Toy and Miniature in-camera after shooting.

For our review of the Panasonic TS5, see our
2013 Best Waterproof Cameras Shootout,
where we compare the TS5 against five top competitors
and identify which waterproof camera may be right for you.

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