Panasonic TS4, TS20

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TS4

For the rugged outdoorsman/woman, or the klutz – no need to raise your hand – two new “rugged” cameras have been announced by Panasonic. They are the Lumix DMC-TS4 and the Lumix TS20.

The TS4 is the company’s top-of-the-line rugged camera and features built-in GPS system, compass, altimeter, and barometer.

It’s dustproof, waterproof to approximately 40 feet (12 m), shockproof to approximately 6.6 feet (2 m), and freezeproof to temperatures as low as -10ºC.

The TS4 sports a Leica DC Vario-Elmar lens with a 4.6x optical zoom (28-128 mm equivalent); a 12.1-megapixel Hi-Speed CCD sensor; image processing LSI Venus Engine; and the ability to shoot 1920 x 1080 full-High Definition (HD) video in AVCHD and MP4 formats.

The TS4’s altimeter works as an indicator for depth underwater; and the barometer log is available to help users forecast the climate and then log barometric trends. The altitude measurements can be improved when using the camera’s GPS data, which is enhanced when compared to its predecessor, the TS3. The new GPS system now covers more than one million landmarks and 82 countries/regions, with the capability of showing the location in various formats (e.g. country/region, state/province, township, city/town/village and landmark) – all which is saved in the file’s EXIF data.

The Venus Engine, says Panasonic, integrates advanced signal processing capabilities to power Intelligent Noise Reduction, thus producing stunning still photos and videos. In addition, the Venus Engine powers high-speed burst shooting and fast response times, with Sonic Speed AF.

New to the TS-Series is manual operation, allowing users to adjust shutter speed and aperture. Also available are modes such as Time Lapse Shot, Miniature Effect, and Panorama Shot.

With Time Lapse Shot, once the start time, interval and number of photos to shoot are set, the camera automatically records the images and can be left alone to do its thing.

The TS4 includes iA (Intelligent Auto) mode – a suite of technologies automatically engaged to allow the camera to select the most appropriate settings.

There’s a dedicated video record button.

TS20

The TS20 is waterproof to approximately 16 feet (5 m), shockproof to approximately 5 feet (1.5 m), dustproof, and freezeproof to temperatures as low as -10ºF.

The camera has a 16.1-megapixel sensor and a 4x optical zoom (25-100 mm equivalent), 8x with the Intelligent Zoom function.

Video is recordable at 720p High Definition (HD) in the MP4 format. Recorded videos can be directly uploaded to YouTube when the included software is installed.

The TS20 has a 2.7-inch LCD.

The camera offers iA (Intelligent Auto) mode which includes MEGA O.I.S., AF Tracking, Intelligent ISO Control, Face Recognition, Intelligent Scene Selector and Intelligent Exposure.

The feature package includes Miniature Effect mode and Panorama Shot mode.

The Panasonic Lumix TS4 will be available in orange, blue, and black options in mid-March with a suggested retail price of $399.99.

The DMC-TS20 will be available in early April in orange, blue, and red for a suggested retail price of $229.99.

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