Panasonic Lumix TS2

Sections: Point and Shoot

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Product Reviews

Waterproof Camera

Anaheim, CA—Panasonic came to the PMA 2010 Convention and Trade Show, at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California, with a bevy of new Lumix digital cameras, including a new model for the outdoor adventure set. The 14.1 megapixel Lumix DMC-TS2 features high-definition video recording in the AVCHD Lite format with Dolby Digital Stereo Creator for high-quality audio, and it’s waterproof to 33 feet, shockproof to 10 feet, freezeproof to 14 degrees F and dustproof.

Protected against water immersion, dust and sand, its airtight body uses rubber padding and reinforced glass and carbon on the inside. It’s encased with shock-resistant material, and a folded optics design protects its lens when dropped. A supplementary damper that absorbs shock impact also protects the lens unit. And, a cover panel for its LCD is thickened by 1.3x compared to the predecessor TS1 to withstand increased pressure underwater. The camera will also come with an optional silicon jacket to help protect its exterior from scratches.

Other features include: “sonic speed AF” that specs state locks on a subject in 0.24 sec wide-end and 0.28 sec tele; a 1.1-sec start-up; a shutter release time lag of 0.005 sec; a 2.7-inch LCD; Power OIS, which doubles the repression power compared to the conventional Mega optical image stabilization; and a 28mm wide-angle Leica DC Vario Elmar 4.6x optical zoom lens that extends to 6x with Panasonic’s new intelligent zoom feature, designed to maintain picture quality while extending the zoom range 1.3x.

Panasonic incorporated new image-processing technology, “intelligent resolution,” into its Venus engine HD II. With this technology, three areas—outlines, detailed texture areas and soft gradation—are examined pixel by pixel to automatically detect and enhance degradation created during the digital zoom process or in high-sensitivity shooting.

Also include are face recognition, high dynamic mode, intelligent scene selector that automatically selects the most appropriate of six scene modes, AF tracking, intelligent ISO control and intelligent exposure. iA functions are also available in video mode.

The Panasonic Lumix TS2, compatible with the company’s just-announced 48GB and 64GB SDXC cards, will be available in silver, blue, orange and yellow. $399.95.

Panasonic is also showing the Lumix DMC-ZS7 with the superzoom ZS series’ hallmark 25mm ultra-wide-angle 12x optical zoom Leica lens (operable in video recording mode), 12.1 megapixels and built-in GPS that embeds photos and videos with the latitude and longitude data. Geotagged images can be pinpointed on maps in photo-sharing and social media websites so travels can be archived and visually represented on a map.

Panasonic calls the ZS7 “the world’s smallest photo/video hybrid superzoom digital camera” that records HD video using AVCHD Lite and a dedicated record button. Also new is a manual shooting mode. “Sonic speed AF” is said to enable a shutter release time lag of 0.006 sec, focus lock in 0.35 sec (wide-end) / 0.41 sec (tele-end) and a 1.1-sec start-up. With its GPS feature, the ZS7 shows the name of the city, country and state, and information for more than 500,000 popular landmarks in 73 countries that are stored in its internal memory. For instance, when photos of the Eiffel Tower are taken, a landmark stored within the camera, the location is displayed on-screen. Also new is a happy mode and high dynamic mode that helps capture a scene with moderate exposure. Users can select from standard, art or B/W.

Even more features: a 3.0-inch LCD; intelligent resolution; intelligent zoom, which extends the camera’s zoom to 16x without degrading image quality; manual controls for shutter speed, aperture and exposure; Power OIS; and iA mode for auto scene and setting selection as well as ISO control, intelligent exposure, AF tracking and face recognition. iA is also available in video mode, and to complement its HD video capabilities, the ZS7 provides Dolby Digital Stereo Creator to record high-quality audio. The Lumix DMC-ZS7 is compatible with SDXC cards. $399.95. Booth 3129.

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