Top positive review
299 people found this helpful
Great Camera with a few small issues
on April 5, 2013
So I was in the market for a new camera and I wanted a tough camera because well cell phones these days who really needs a basic point and shoot camera and also I Scuba Dive and previously had a Canon Elph with a waterproof enclosure. Every time I would take it in the water I had a moment where I crossed my fingers and hoped the case wouldn't leak. With the recent 2013 model releases I narrowed it down to the Nikon AW110 and the Panasonic Lumix TS5. I finally decided to go with the Lumix TS5 for 1 major reason. Panasonic sells an external enclosure in case you plan on going deeper then 43 feet. (not on the market yet but I plan on getting one)
I had read a lot of mix reviews on the TS4 about leaking which made me a bit nervous but I'm going to hope and assume they have rectified all the issues with the TS5. I've had the camera about a week now. I'm going to start off with a few negatives for me first (these are mostly pet peeves).
1. What is the deal with the battery charger? Why Panasonic didn't build the charger prongs into the charger is beyond me. Now you need to carry around a charger plus a cable to plug into the charger and the wall.
2. The manual states you can't keep the camera under water more then 60 minutes, that is not listed anywhere on their website would have been nice to know prior to purchasing.
3. The manual states, if you drop the camera and then it leaks its not covered under warranty. Um isn't the point of a tough camera so it can be dropped? Why is that voiding the warranty?
4. My biggest complaint though is this proprietary connector they use to connect to your computer (hello micro usb standard Panasonic?), also the connector looks almost identical to the micro HDMI slot) so you gotta pay attention to make sure your putting it in the correct slot because their smaller connector cable sort of fits in the micro hdmi port. (made that mistake by accident already once)
1. The picture quality seems very good. While I have only used the camera twice so far most of the pictures came out great. I took the camera to a concert the other day, being very dark I was concerned how the pictures would show up. The camera has a feature called Hand Held Night Mode, and it basically took a bunch of shots in a row and I'm guessing merged them together so the final photo was actually good looking. I had the camera on auto made and it automatically selected this.
2. The zoom is decent at 4.6X and adding the digital zoom up to 9.3X I had no issues getting a clear shot (even when it was dark).
3. The NFC is a nice feature as I own an Android phone and all you need to do is tap the phone and the camera together to pair them. You have to install the Panasonic App, but you can do a bunch of things with it. Remote control the camera, copy photos from the camera to the phone etc. (**disclaimer** occasionally I've had issues with the pairing on my HTC EVO LTE)
4. The video recording and sound is great. I record a 30 second clip while at the concert the other day and it was very clear and the picture looked great (from no zoom to fully zoomed).
5. Had no problems catching moving objects and even with my shaky hands the pictures came out un-blurred.
On a side note I needed to confirm some things with Panasonic the manual stated, Panasonic Tier 1 support is worthless, finally escalated to Tier 2 and they were a lot more helpful.
1. The camera has a rattling noise when it is off. Panasonic's response was: This is normal. The camera contains an Optical Image Stabilizer. When turned on the optical image stabilizer is engaged and thereby compensates for hand shake or camera movement. However, when it the camera is turned off the Optical Image Stabilizer is disengaged and allows movement of those components. This is the rattling or clicking that you hear.
2. The manual says "do not use for Scuba Diving" I wanted to confirm if that meant at any depth or in general. Their response was: Recreational Scuba diving goes to ~120 ft. We included this statement due to the camera's depth limitation.
3. The manual says "Waterproof function of the camera is for sea water and fresh water only." I wanted the make sure I could take the camera in the pool. Their response was: You can use it in a pool, which is fresh water. We included this statement as it cannot be used in hot tubs (due to high temp) or used as an inspection camera in hazardous situations such as polluted water, chemical spills and so on.
I have not yet taken the camera in the water or dropped it or used it as a "tough" camera so I can't really comment on any of that, hopefully I can update this review as I use it over the course of the next few months. But for now I will give it 5 stars as it hasn't shown me any reason to rate it lower just yet.