Gear Review/For the Win

So, I figured I’d toss out a gear review of my camera, the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS10, alphabet soup there. Anyway, I got this camera for Christmas, so now feel I can give a good review of it with now 4 months of solid use.

Verdict: I love it!

As I’ve said before on this site, I am by no means an experienced photographer, I’m really just getting into it and struggled between going for one of the big boy DSLRs or working my way up with this little guy. And, thus far, I’m really glad I did.

First, the basics:

• It’s perfectly geared for the outdoor user, not only is it super light and has a low profile, but it’s also waterproof to 10 feet, drop proof to 5 feet, freeze proof to 14 degrees and dust proof
• It has a 14.1 megapixel resolution
• It records HD video in 720 motion JPG
• It as a 4x optical zoom
• A 2.7 inch intelligent LCD display
• Built in flash
• And weighs only 6.1 ounces

Beyond the whole mumbo jumbo, what I really love about it is simple, it takes some great pictures. Even though it has an intelligent auto setting, so the camera will figure out itself what setting is best for each particular situation, I love to play around with all the other settings it has. I found the sunset mode, takes fantastic low level light pictures, the colors really pop. It also has a snow mode, so any winter pictures won’t be washed out by all the white reflections, and a sports mode for taking action shots with that cool blurred background effect.

A couple of other features I think are cool, but admittedly don’t use as I have no babies or pets, is the baby and pet mode. You can set the camera so it will remember up to 2 kids – if you have 3 kids, then you will just have to choose your two favorites – so when you are snapping pictures, it will list what kid is in what shot. Similar for the pet, but I guess if you have 3 kids and no pet, your 3rd kid could be the pet option? Moving slowly away from this before I dig a deeper hole….

Back to the review…thus far I have used this camera a bunch of places, I dropped it in an icy river in Canada, I fell on it snowshoeing in my backyard, I carried it my purse for a friends birthday, and have been just sticking it in my pocket on nice days lately in case I see something cool to add to my cloud porn collection.

Granted, you are never going to get the same picture quality you would from a SLR or DSLR camera, but I feel, especially for the price (it’s retailing for just under $200 at most of your local and online shops), its a great starter camera. I would highly recommend it if you are an active outdoorsy person (or a klutz – my reason, really) because you can strap it to your pack or toss it in your kayak without a second thought. Now, I never have to worry when I am out about handling the camera with kid gloves, it was great when I dunked my camera in a river in Canada to get a shot and my friend started freaking out that I was ruining it!

The camera also comes in 4 colors, for all you fashionistas, and is basically the baby brother of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS2, which for about $100 more gives more toughness and a few more options. The only real complaint I have heard from most people is about the battery life. I, personally, haven’t been out for really long stretches of time taking pictures, so I haven’t encountered this issue yet, but I did grab an extra battery online (a non-Panasonic one works just fine, and is a lot cheaper), so I can keep that charged and ready to go, espeically for when I am over in the UK.

Transferring pictures is really easy, it comes with your standard USB wire, it plugs right into my MacBook and quickly uploads everything into either iPhoto or Aperature in a short amount of time. I also have a card reader, so if you end up losing the cord or something, I have not had an issue transferring pictures that way either.

So, I figure no review of a camera is complete without adding a few pictures. All these I have taken with this camera, so judge for yourself.