The Lumix FT3 is water proof (12 metres), shock proof (2 metres), freezeproof (-10 degrees Celsius), dustproof, comes with altimeter (measures altitude), barometer (measures atmospheric pressure), compass, GPS, records 12 mega-pixel images and Full-HD, with 28-128mm f/3.3-5.9 lens… I mean, you can bring this device anywhere on Earth!
- Intelligent Auto (iAuto)
- Normal Auto
- 30 SCENE modes
- 3D Photo mode (MPO format)
- ISO 100-1600
- LED Light for video recording
- LUMIX Image Uploader
- Resize, Cropping and Video Trimming
What I like about the FT3:
- The camera starts up rather fast, just like the FX78 and TZ20. This allows me to capture spontaneous moments easily.
- The camera shutter and shot-to-shot responses are speedy too – plus points for candid shots.
- The hardware buttons are responsive and easy to press.
- The LCD monitor viewable angle is very wide without affecting display contrast.
- The lens does not protrude, so I can conveniently place the camera face-down even when the power is on.
- Built-in LED light for video, not powerful, but still, useful.
|Screen captures of a video shot on FT3.|
Reservations about the FT3:
- Heavy image blooming when light hits on the lens.
- Tele-end of the lens does not deliver good optics.
- Although shockproof, FT3 body will still be damaged. The review unit I am using already has “battle scars”.
I have always wanted to get a waterproof camera myself, but I understand it is not possible for a waterproof camera to achieve the same image quality and features as a normal camera. The Lumix FT3 does not differ far from this truth. Nevertheless, it’s impressive that the handling of FT3 is on par with the compact cameras like Lumix FX78: under normal lighting situations the image quality is actually comparable to the Lumix TZ20. So I would say that the FT3 comes close to what I would want for a waterproof camera, except when blooming appears on the images. My search continues.