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148 of 154 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Little Camera
I just got this camera and after setting it up which was very easy i am impressed with the video and picture quality, as far as the previous review about water safety warnings, when i turn my camera off and on total time for the display to show up is 3 seconds and with NO water safety warnings, i dont know why the previous reader keeps getting the warning. i have not...
Published on April 3, 2012 by Al

versus
695 of 711 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Camera but very expensive ($180) to maintain each year
I have just purchased the Orange DMC TS4. It is a vast improvement over the TS3 in many respects. I appreciate the full manual mode in particular. I like to take shots of the night sky, the stars in particular... the option to set the shutter speed up to 60 seconds is amazing.

The time lapse is also a marked bonus as well. I am a bit worried when leaving...
Published on April 13, 2012 by Amazon Customer


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695 of 711 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Camera but very expensive ($180) to maintain each year, April 13, 2012
By 
I have just purchased the Orange DMC TS4. It is a vast improvement over the TS3 in many respects. I appreciate the full manual mode in particular. I like to take shots of the night sky, the stars in particular... the option to set the shutter speed up to 60 seconds is amazing.

The time lapse is also a marked bonus as well. I am a bit worried when leaving the camera in one spot for so long as it may be stolen, but so far I have made some amazing short films.

The overall picture quality seems to have improved as well.

The only MAJOR PROBLEM is that the manufacturer suggests that the watertight seals be replaced to maintain the water-proof integrity of the camera. They have not established what I consider a reasonable pricing structure for this maintenance procedure. To replace the seal you need to unscrew two screws on the door and replace the seal. Yet the service department for Panasonic now charges $180 plus shipping costs (both ways) to do this. I have spoken with the service department and they have assured me new pricing is being considered..so BEWARE!

One minor limitation I see with the camera is, beside the repair issue, the menu is a bit quirky and takes a little while to get used to. Another is to keep your finger off the lens, and keep your finger off the mike. If you cover the mike even a little while recording you will record both your subject but also the internal whizzing and other sounds of the camera.

I have included some of my shots in the customer images section of the product page.

5/8/2012 UPDATE.. Panasonic parts department says you can buy the "water packing" kit for about $32. Part number VUMG 1978.. call 1-800-833-9626 to buy this part. They say this is the part that needs to be replaced each year to keep the watertight integrity of the camera.

6/17/2012 UPDATE... I have just come back from a trip to Japan. A nice Panasonic repair person told me that the lens is prone to come loose and rattle when off. This is weird but normal so he says. The rattle stops when you power up the camera.

**I also discovered a neat feature of the panorama function. When you play back panorama pictures on the camera, when you push the up button, same as when you playback movies, on the camera it makes a movie out of the panorama. It is like you are there. Amazing!!

6/26/2012 UPDATE... Just spoke with Panasonic repair person in TX, USA and they have confirmed that they now charge only $50 to change all of the waterproof seals. (down from $180)
***be warned however, they said they will also look for other things to repair and if they find something the price for those repairs (not covered by any existing warranty) will be $180+.

**8/10/2012- NEW REPAIR POLICY. I just spoke with Panasonic repair person in TX again, a new policy has been initiated regarding ts models. They no longer will question camera leaks if under warranty. They told me, at least for now, that they will be replacing them with new, not refurbished, cameras of the same model and color. Good news!! It looks like Panasonic has listened to all the negative comments and decided to do something about it!!!
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148 of 154 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Little Camera, April 3, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I just got this camera and after setting it up which was very easy i am impressed with the video and picture quality, as far as the previous review about water safety warnings, when i turn my camera off and on total time for the display to show up is 3 seconds and with NO water safety warnings, i dont know why the previous reader keeps getting the warning. i have not tried the camera in underwater setting yet and thats why i am giving it a 4 star, but will be using it in Tahiti next month and will leave a follow up comment. Nice job panasonic for now.

4/22/2012, this is followup for those who have doubts about this camera, after using it for 2 days in Moorea Tahiti, i could not be happier, it has done a great job on pictures and videos, the camera comes on within 1 second and ready for use, i have used it under water down to 12 meters (40 feet) not one leak into the door housing, the seal is great, i clean the camera under fresh water after every use, and when i open the door to change the battery i wipe the wetness from the seat. i rate this camera a 5 star. i will load a video and pictures when i have access to free internet. cheers
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127 of 144 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Thought I was smarter than other 1 star reviewers ... I was wrong, June 8, 2012
By 
JK (Wisconsin) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Do not buy this camera / very expensive paper weight.
I purchased this camera to take on our honeymoon in May to the Society Islands in French Polynesia. I read through all the reviews of the TS-4 and TS-3 both positive and negative and thought I was smart enough to not have this camera break, I was wrong. I followed all the instructions making sure the seals were clear and soaking it after snorkeling (never more than 1hr and never below a few feet). 7 days into our trip, and arguably the most amazing day post-camera death, the camera stopped working.

When we returned from the trip I called Panasonic and was told to send to their repair center in TX. I received a call this week that the camera was out of warranty and it would cost $180 for them to start the repair and I would have a 90-day warranty with their work. So my 1-month old camera has now cost me 50% more and will have 33% of the original warranty. The best part, and I'll update once I find out, is that this $180 may not actually cover their repairs...this is just to figure out the repair plan.

Getting a hold of a Panasonic representative has been almost impossible. I've never actually reviewed anything (positive or negative) but I am so upset with Panasonic that I had to. If this helps one person avoid buying this camera or anything from Panasonic I'll be somewhat satisfied.

Update 7.5.12: Received a call two weeks ago that they could not fix the camera, but would send me a new one for an additional $40 more than the $180 to repair. They told me it would be a new camera and would have 90 days of warranty. I said a standard factory warranty was 1 year and asjpked if it was a refurb unit. They said no and that the factory warranty ran concurrently with the 90days and covered 1 yr. You've probably already guessed that the unit they sent was refurbished and has only 90 days of warranty. They also forgot to send the battery back with the camera...who are these people that Panasonic hires?! I laughed at the commercial with the US Soccer team showing the new "tough" iPad wannabe. After the team dumped the Gatorade on the coach all I could think of was "well that will never work again".
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107 of 121 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent all-purpose camera, April 28, 2012
By 
Kyle Garafolo (Wheaton, IL USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I received the orange Panasonic TS4 two weeks ago for my birthday. My intended purpose for this camera was for my trip to Jamaica, which is where my sister just got married. I was in Jamaica for 1 week and took about 950 pictures. I returned home 2 days ago and after reviewing my pictures on my TV and new iPad, all I can say about this camera is WOW!

The reason I got this camera is because I wanted an all purpose camera that is water proof but can still take great pictures on a day to day basis. In Jamaica I used this camera for my sister's wedding, to go snorkeling, when we climbed waterfalls, went on a lazy river tubing ride, horseback riding in the Caribbean Sea, and everything in between. This camera took outstanding pictures a majority of the time, but did have some difficulty with night time pictures. The images came out a little blurry for some night pictures, so I had to play with the settings a little bit to try to improve the picture quality. Some night pictures did look great with the night setting, but others did not. So night pictures were a hit or miss.

For my sister's wedding, I used this camera for all the pre-wedding pictures as well as during the ceremony which was on the beach. It rained a little during the ceremony (which is supposedly a blessing in Jamaica!) and did not have to worry about my camera failing because of the rain due to the waterproof feature. All the pictures looked amazing.

For the underwater/beach pictures and videos, this was my first waterproof camera so I was a little nervous at first going underwater, but I made sure I followed all the cleaning/soaking rules to make sure it maintained its water tight seal. There were times when the lens would fog due to a quick change in the temperature (which is normal). I noticed it primarily happened going from the beach into the colder water. All I did was make sure my camera was dry and opened the side door to kind of equalize indoor/outdoor temperatures. This fixed the fogging issue withing 5-10 minutes. I think my lens fogged 2 or 3 times throughout the whole trip. Again, these underwater/beach pictures and videos looked amazing.

The GPS feature is cool because it records your location as well as the altitude/depth and pressure, but it did greatly reduce the battery life (which I knew it would prior to purchasing this camera). I bought another battery so I could easily swap out batteries when one would die. I'm definitely glad I did! At the end of the night, I probably used one full battery and about half of the other (I had the GPS feature on). I'm sure if I turned it off it would have lasted much much longer.

After showing my pictures to my friends and family, everyone was astounded that this camera was able to take such great pictures. Between the wedding pictures and the underwater/beach pictures, this camera did it all. I emphasize not just using the automatic setting, however. While the auto setting did take great pictures, I found that going into the scene mode and selecting exactly what setting you'd like for that particular image took even better pictures than the auto setting (especially for night images). I am 100% happy about this camera and I would recommend it to anyone that wants a great point and shoot camera that is also waterproof.
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80 of 91 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Buyer Beware, Warranty worthless, June 10, 2012
Buyer Beware! Panasonic will not honor their warranty!
I am very distressed that I am forced to post this complaint about Panasonic not honoring their explicit warranty on a Lumix DMC-TS3 "underwater" camera.
I am an experienced underwater photographer with three underwater cameras and 9 years experience. I have never had a case leakage or any damage to one of my cameras. I know how to care for expensive camera equipment at the beach and underwater.
I purchased a new Lumix DMC-TS3 "underwater and 6 foot drop proof" camera for my wife to use. She is also an experienced photographer and knows how to care for a camera. We liked the Lumix as an easy to use light weight simple point and shoot for shallow water snorkeling. One its first trip, only 6 weeks old, it failed after only 7 days of shallow snorkeling. It was never more than 6 feet underwater and at all times cared for exactly according to the manual. It was never dropped or otherwise damaged. I was sorry it failed so soon on its first trip but we did have our larger underwater cameras so I was not too concerned. I was sure Panasonic would replace or repair the camera and I would have been happy with that.
I returned the camera as instructed to Panasonic certain they would honor their warranty and advertising. I was shocked when they called and said the warranty was void because there was "condensation" inside the camera. I carefully explained that the camera was cared for exactly according to their manual and should be under warranty. I asked to speak to a supervisor and was told they would contact me in 3-4 working days. They never called or emailed me. I then called Panasonic warranty service two more times. Each time I got the same answer: the warranty was void and someone would call me but no one ever did. I am now left without a camera. I would never buy from Panasonic again and caution anyone else considering a purchase from them. If you do not care about a warranty and possible early camera failure then buy Panasonic, otherwise BEWARE PANASONIC. I have now found numerous other complaints on the web about the exact same treatment from Panasonic. This appears to be a corporate policy and not an isolated incident.
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63 of 71 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Under no circumstances are you to buy this camera., June 2, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I'll keep this short: bought this exact camera on Amazon for a trip to Hawaii. I used it in three feet of water for 20 minutes, without issue. Once on land again, followed instructions and water still found a way to get in.

For the next six days, I had a $279 paper weight.

Upon returning to the mainland, Amazon Customer Service rocked and I returned it for a full refund.

I have zero faith in this product. Do not get burned, or soaked, as I did.
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61 of 70 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Avoid it: not at all waterproof, April 21, 2012
I recently replaced an Olympus Tough who accompanied me for many years by the Panasonic for its waterproof characteristics and for its optical quality.
Unfortunately on my last trip it broke down: it fails to power on ever since. So I brought it to Panasonic for repair under the warranty. I was very surprised when it was returned unrepaired. They said it was compliant to the leak test under the manufacturer's specifications (basically it's my fault that the camera does not work, so the warranty does not apply). Note that I am long accustomed to the use of underwater equipment, and I always took good care of my Panasonic (before, during and after use in water, as recommended in the manual).
The camera cost me several hundred dollars for a few photos. Now all I can do is to buy a new camera on my own expense.

My advice to anyone considering buying this product (which makes great pictures despite its pitiful waterproof characteristic) for underwater usage is to do your homework and go through the 43 1-star reviews of its older brother the Panasonic TS3.
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35 of 39 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nice camera but it leaked, May 15, 2012
By 
R. W. Parks (San Jose, CA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
We got this camera just prior to a trip to Hawaii. The camera is about typical for ease of use, and we got some good photos from it. The video quality was better than expected, particularly the "anti shake". It was very impressive video for a small camera!

The issue was when we took it snorkeling. We followed the instructions, and also did a test in fresh water in the sink and it did fine. So, we took it on a boat trip to a snorkeling site. It was in the water for about an hour, mostly just surface snorkeling, but a few surface dives down to about 10 ft depth. The camera was rated to 40 ft depth, so I figured that 10 ft should be fine.

Well, it wasn't. We got it back to shore, rinsed it in fresh water, allowed it to drain and dry, then opened it. It was wet inside the door. The next day it was not working. So, we returned it to Amazon for a refund (which was processed immediately with no problems).

The good news is that the photos and video from the snorkeling survived just fine, and we got some really good video of a sea turtle. If you do get this camera, note that it has a "beach and snorkeling" mode, and an "underwater" mode. The main difference is the color balance. Even if you are just snorkeling on the surface, try the "underwater" mode. We much preferred the color in those images.

Other people have posted similar leaking problems here, and if you look at other, similar cameras, they all seem to have some problems. Maybe they should all be called "splashproof" or something!

Anyway, I give the camera a low score because it leaked, but not a single star, because it did a good job while it did work!
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48 of 55 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Read ALL reviews!, July 21, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I thought we were buying a good underwater camera after reading a few of the reviews- Please read ALL reviews. We bought this camera for a trip to FL followed by a trip to the Bahamas. It never made it to the Bahamas. After forty five images including three underwater shots in a swimming pool- screen on the back fogged over with moisture. It was very disappointing as we missed the underwater beauty of the Bahamas. Will never spend that much on a water camera again. Thankfully Amazon refunded our money plus shipping- we remain big fans of Amazon...
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Great Camera when it works :-(, June 13, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Bought this camera for a vacation, worked for only 5 days then went on the fritz. The screen kept blinking between photo mode and a message about it being set for 16:9 TV viewing mode. After it started freaking out you couldn't play back the pictures taken or use the mode button to switch shooting modes. I was very disappointed because when it was working it took great photos, great image stabilization and clarity of photos with zoom etc. Never got to test water proofing or shock proofing but considering the other comments I'm figuring it probably would have malfunctioned sooner or later in those conditions too. Such a shame. Amazon was great and agreed to let me return it for a full refund. I had to end up buying another camera while on vacation because this one just wouldn't work. I do love the shots I did get from it though. Hopefully Panasonic will fix the glitches and this will be a good camera one day but sadly that day is not today :-(
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