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Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT5 Digital Camera Review

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT5 has a 16 megapixel sensor, 4.6x optical zoom and is waterproof to 13m. Daniel Bell reviews.

|  Panasonic Lumix FT5 in Compact Cameras
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Panasonic Lumix FT5
The Panasonic Lumix FT5 is update to the FT4 with improved ruggedness. The camera also features a new underwater white balance mode and is now waterproof to 13m, shockproof to 2m, can endure temperatures as low as -10ºC and is dustproof. The Panasonic Lumix FT5 is available in orange, black, silver, and blue for £399.99.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT5 Features

Panasonic Lumix FT5

The FT5 is waterproof to 13m, shockproof to 2m, can endure temperatures as low as -10ºC and is dustproof making it ideally suited to shooting in extreme conditions. It has a 16.1 megapixel high sensitivity MOS sensor and 4.6x optical zoom lens, a 35mm equivalent of 28-128mm. To reduced camera shake, there is Power Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS).

To make picture taking easy there is Intelligent Auto (iA) mode which adjusts the camera settings automatically for the detected scene. The FT5 is packed with many other shooting modes, including manual exposure where you can adjust the aperture and the shutter speed. There is a creative control mode which includes a number of methods to help you take unique photos. You can record panoramas and select from a number of scene modes, including sports, snow and advanced underwater.

The FT5 also packs a couple of very useful features for the travelling photographer. It has built-in Wi-Fi and NFC technology which lets the camera connect to smartphones and tablets. There is also a Panasonic Image app for remote shooting and transfer of images. There is GPS which enables you to geotag your images as well as a compass, altimeter and barometer.

Videos are recorded in full 1080p HD with stereo sound and optical zoom in 50p AVCHD and 25p MP4. You can also record time lapse shots which can be combined to produce a time lapse video.

Panasonic Lumix FT5

Key Features

  • 16.1 megapixel high sensitivity MOS sensor
  • 4.6x optical zoom lens, a 35mm equivalent of 28-128mm
  • Power Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS)
  • 3 inch 460k dot LCD screen
  • Waterproof to 13m, shockproof to 2m, freezeproof to -10ºC and dustproof
  • Built-in GPS and Wi-Fi
  • Full 1080p HD video recording
  • ISO 100-3200
  • 5cm minimum focusing distance
  • 10 fps continuous shooting
  • Panorama mode
  • Available in white, black, blue and orange

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT5 Handling

Panasonic Lumix FT5

The FT5 looks very similar to the FT4 with a few minor differences. The screen is now 3 inch with the FT4 having a 2.7 inch one and also has double the resolution at 460k dots. It is very bright and detail is crisp. There is also a more substantial grip on the front of the camera. The FT5 has a very solid metal body and is quite heavy. The battery and memory card slot has a double locking system to ensure there's no chance any water will get in, the camera is good a reminding you to make sure that it is firmly locked before use.

There is a typical set of buttons for a compact camera, with an on / off switch at the top alongside the shutter release and movie record button. On the rear is the zoom rocker as well as playback, mode, Wi-Fi, delete and display buttons. There is also a d-pad which is used for navigating the menus and also gives quick access to exposure compensation, flash, focus mode and self-timer.

The FT5 has a well laid out menu system with explanations for each option. The Wi-Fi allows you to create an ad-hoc network to share your photos or can connect to other wireless networks. The Panasonic Image app is easy to use but it's best you have a read of the instructions first. Using the remote control function it's possible to use touch focus, set the zoom and much more. With the app you're also able to download photos from the camera to your smartphone / tablet. The GPS activates quickly and by pressing the display button you can get various bit of information, such as longitude and latitude, which direction you are facing and much more.

Panasonic Lumix Dmc Ft5 App Screenshot 1
Panasonic Image App Screenshot 1
Panasonic Lumix Dmc Ft5 App Screenshot 2
Panasonic Image App Screenshot 2
Panasonic Lumix Dmc Ft5 Display Screen
Display screen with GPS data

Battery life is rated at 370 shots according to CIPA test results, we can't give a reliable figure on the number of shots we took on one charge as we had the GPS on and gave the Wi-Fi functionality a thorough testing, all of which reduce the battery life much quicker.

We took a number of shots to test the camera's responsiveness, from switch on to first photo, shot to shot, focusing speed etc. We take a number of shots and then use the average to ensure accurate and consistent tests, making it easy to compare with other cameras.

Shutter Response   0.1 secs
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response   0.3 secs
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response   0.55 secs
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo   2.0 secs
Shot to Shot without Flash   0.79 secs
Shot to Shot with Flash   1.32 secs
Continuous Shooting 2 fps AF-Continuous   1.92 fps
Continuous Shooting 5 fps AF-Continuous   4.68 fps
Continuous Shooting 10 fps AF-Single   8.31 fps
Continuous Shooting 40 fps AF-Single   35.3 fps
Continuous Shooting 60 fps AF-Single   58.8 fps
Flash Burst   1.47 fps

Continuous Shooting 2, 5 and 10 fps all record at full 16 megapixel resolution. 40 fps records at 5 megapixels, 60 fps at 2.5 megapixels and Flash Burst at 3 megapixels.
Panasonic Lumix FT5

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20 Mar 2014 9:34AM
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.

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