updated 12:45 am EST, Tue January 31, 2012
Panasonic TS4 and TS20 rugged Lumix cams show
Panasonic's Lumix line got further upgrades Tuesday with two new rugged cameras. The TS4 is its new, toughest camera and can withstand water depths of up to 40 feet, drops of up to 6.6 feet, most dust, and temperatures down to 14F. Like some of the newest rugged cameras, it has an altimeter and a barometer log, although it now has the new GPS system of the ZS20 to load map data from a DVD for advanced geotagging.
The 12.1-megapixel shooter carries a fast if CCD-based sensor. It centers on an internalized 4.6X (28-128mm) zoom and can shoot video at up to 1080i. Manual control is new to the TS line and makes a gesture towards experienced photographers.
A new 'entry' camera, the TS20, is designed more for poolside use or other more casual situations. The more frugal Lumix can take water up to 16 feet, drops of five feet, the dust resistance, and 14F temperatures. Video shooting is capped at 720p.
The TS20 bows first and will be ready by the end of February for $180. A slightly longer wait until March will make the TS4 available for $400.