Panasonic has a new digicam out. A specialty device, sure, but it's a digicam—that antiquated old type of device like your Dad once used, along with phones hardwired to the wall and, you know, buggy whips. "Where's my teeth, Ma?" Just kidding, but they're pretty passé, is what I'm saying.
It has a 20-MP sensor. The promo verbiage doesn't admit it's a 1/2.3" sensor until we're deep into the fine print.
Why this digicam, at this late date in their history? Well, it's "tough." That is, our ratty smartphones we're so proud of aren't waterproof to depths up to 102', nor can they withstand impacts from 6.6' high (don't test this at home), nor are they freezeproof down to 14°F (–10°C) or crushproof up to 220 lbf. This digicam is all those things.
Panasonic says it has optimized the viewfinder and screen for outdoor use (bright light). It has a 28–128mm-e lens, and Wi-Fi. It's called by the fetching name of DC-TS7. (See if you can remember that. There will not be a quiz.) ~$450.
Oh, and by the way, that post title? No one ever said "ye" for "the." It was just typesetter's shorthand for "the," relacing the Old Norse letter called thorn (þ), because there was no thorn in the English typecase and also unusually a shortage of t's and h's along with a surplus of y's. "Ye olde" was pronounced "the old" (short e) even back in the days of Ethelfrith, Ethelbald, Ethelwulf, Ethelbreath*, and Alfred.
Mike, who is at this time for some unknown reason reading a 1,040-page history of England
*I made that one up. The rest are medieval English kings.
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Featured Comments from:
Moose: "Olympus pioneered this genre and has been doing it for many years, although their TG-5 is obviously passe, as Panny has started with '7.'
"I wonder how it actually performs. It uses a folded light path design similar to the lower-end Olympus Toughs. I had a 16-MP TG-850 and was mightily disappointed in the IQ (yes, I know, but it's such a useful shorthand for 'makes crappy photos.' Really awful.) The 12-MP Tough TG-4 that I have now makes much better photos. [Current version is the TG-5. —Ed.]
"The single-digit TG series use an excellent lens in more normal relation to the sensor, that somehow manages not to protrude from the body, on or off, zoomed or not.
"The Panny may have one superior feature. DPR saith, 'The main attraction is a 0.2" electronic viewfinder with 1.17M-dot equivalent viewfinder for shooting outdoors.' I say 'may have' because it's another iteration of the tiny EVF used in the GM5 and the ZS series. I like it on those cameras, but others won't.
The Olympus TG-5
"Other than the EVF, the Panny is larger, heavier, and has a slower lens. The TG-5 zoom range is less. It's also 1.5 stops faster at the short end, 0.5 faster at the long end.
"The Oly has an amazing 'Microscope' Mode with Focus Stacking that works well. This was shot outdoors at night, all light from the ring light pipe. Oly also has attachments for light-piping the AF light as ring light for Macro, GPS, ringlight-like flash diffuser, compass, manometer, thermometer and add-on, waterproof, Tele (1.7x) and fisheye lenses. The tele aux lens makes for 170 mm-e, with no loss of speed. I can attest that the Macro ring light and tele lens both work well. Unlike the GPS I've had on older compacts, this one is actually useful.
"Also, because it's been out longer, the Oly is at the moment $60 less expensive. Absent reviews of the quality of the photos lens and sensor make, I can't tell if the EVF outweighs the Oly's several other better qualities."
Mike replies: Thanks Moose. Very useful info.