Panasonic DMC FS5 Review

Ultra Compact

Picture
Panasonic DMC FS5 Ease of Use 8
Features 8
Movie Mode 9
Build Quality8
Colours 8
Photo Quality 9
Style 9
Lowlight 9
Macro 8
Value for Money 8
10 Megapixels
4x Zoom
2.5 inch LCD Screen
94.9 x 53.4 x 22.5 m
119g

Overview

The Panasonic DMC FS5 digital camera is small enough to slip into a pocket and has a 10 megapixels with a 4x optical zoom lens. The lens is a wide angle lens. This helps you to squeeze extra width into a photo. This can be especially useful for landscape shots, groups of people and for taking pictures of buildings.

Why Buy The Panasonic DMC FS5

Panasonic have built a number of features into the DMC FS5 that are likely to appeal to someone looking for a digital camera that is easy to operate. The camera has a special intelligent auto mode where the camera is able to detect any hand shake, motion in the shot, what type of scene is being captured and whether or not there is a face in the picture. It can then optimise the shot automatically for best results.

The camera also has a smart, stylish design and is small enough to take anywhere.

Main Features

Megapixels:
Zoom:
LCD Screen:
Dimensions:
Weight:

10
4x
2.5 inches
94.9 x 53.4 x 22.5 m
119g

Macro:
HD Movies:
Manual Controls:
Batteries:
Memory Cards:

5cm
No
No
Lithium ion
SD/SDHC

Image Quality - See Sample Images Below

Outdoor Scenic Shots in Good Light

Outdoor 1 (Medium Zoom): The first thing that strikes me about this photo is the brightness this Panasonic digital camera manages to capture. It lifts the picture that bit out of the ordinary. I also like the sharp focus. This shows across the photo from the bricks on the building to the names on the boats. You should be able to produce crisp, bright prints from this camera.

Outdoor 2 (No Zoom): This is a good effort from a camera with a wide angle lens. You often see a greater loss of sharpness, but the DMC FS5 holds on to focusing well. There is some noise in the most distant area of the shot.

Outdoor 3 (Maximum Zoom): This is another photo that comes out well. Once more I am struck by the brightness of the photo. Sharpness is above average.

Outdoor 4 (Building): Looking at this shot I can see immediately that the picture produced is sharper than the one produced by the Sony DSC W120 I reviewed yesterday. The brickwork stands out well and I am impressed by the levels of sharpness across the entire picture.

Portraits

Outdoor Portrait: With white balance set to shady the DMC FS5 produces quite strong colours. This gives the photo a warm glow. I like the result as I think it adds a bit more life to the photo than with some digital cameras I have tested recently.

Indoor Portrait with Flash: This is a very bright and clear photo. There is plenty of colour in the shot with the flash unit able to assess accurately the right amount of light to add to the picture.

Indoor Portrait without Flash: Even without flash the DMC FS5 digital camera is able to produce a bright photo. I must admit that the lighting used is not overly challenging and you may find you need to use flash for a lot of indoor and general lowlight photography.

Macro, Colours and Noise

Macro: The macro result is pleasing. There is plenty of definition in the photo and with this pocket digital camera you should be able to produce some good close up shots.

Colours: I would describe the colours produced by Panasonic digital cameras as more vivid than is the norm. It depends on your personal taste as to whether you feel this gives each photo that bit of extra pep or you would prefer something a little more natural. I personally like the colour levels.

ISO 400: Panasonic use a feature they call intelligent ISO. This means that you set the maximum ISO rating, but the camera will decide on the final ISO level to use. At ISO 400 the DMC FS5 still manages to produce a decent image with relatively low noise levels.

ISO 1600: There is less deterioration in this shot than I am used to seeing at this ISO level. More noise appears in darker areas as you would expect, but the DMC FS5 does a decent job overall.

Summary

One of the most impressive features that covers all my test shots is the brightness of the photos. This helps to give them a bit of extra life. On the whole picture quality is very good.

See sample images link arrow

Style

The DMC FS5 has an unfussy design. Rounded ends stop the camera from looking plain. It is available in black, red and silver.

Shutter Lag Times

Shutter Lag Rating Par

Single Shot
Five Shots

0.39 seconds
12.38 seconds


Shutter Lag Table link arrow

Ease of Use

Ease of Use - Par One of the factors I like about Panasonic digital cameras is the fact that the menu system is so easy to read. The text is very clear. I had no problem finding my way around the camera.

Points I Like

Ease of use - design and build quality - automatic features - overall picture quality - wide screen movies

Where it Could Improve

Shutter delay could be that little bit faster

Verdict

The Panasonic DMC FS5 is a very good digital camera. With 10 megapixels you can make extra large prints. The 4x optical zoom lens offers flexibility for wide shots. The camera is easy to use and takes bright, colourful photos. What more could you want from a camera you can slip into a pocket?

Product Shots

Front View

Panasonic DMC FS5 Front View

Back View

Panasonic DMC FS5 Back View

Top View

Panasonic DMC FS5 Top View

Sample Menus

menu menu 1

setup iso

Top Rated Cameras in this Category

Sony DSC TX55 Rating 85/100

If the touch screen was perfect then the Sony Cybershot DSC TX55 would be a truly outstanding digital camera. As it is picture quality is hard to beat for such a small camera. Style and design is very impressive and the features on offer give you more or less everything you are likely to want in a point and shoot pocket camera and a bit more on top. It can be very hard to find the perfect touch screen so if touch control is important to you then this camera is well worth a place on your short list.

Read Review: Sony DSC TX55 Review

Panasonic DMC FX90 Rating 79/100

Panasonic offers some excellent digital cameras and can normally be replied upon to produce crystal clear photos. As with previous reviews of cameras in the FX part of the range the Panasonic Lumix DMC FX90 just does not match up to those usual high standards. Focusing is softer than it should be and you are likely to see the results of this even with relatively small sized prints.

Read Review: Panasonic DMC FX90 Review

Panasonic DMC FX70 Rating 79/100

The Panasonic Lumix DMC FX70 does not quite match up to the picture quality I am used to seeing from Panasonic digital cameras. It does have a lot of other plus points, but if you are looking for true clarity in your photos there are better pocket cameras around.

Read Review: Panasonic DMC FX70 Review

Related Pages

Panasonic DMC FS5 Review Panasonic DMC FS5 Specification Panasonic DMC FS5 Sample Images Panasonic DMC FS5 Features Panasonic Digital Cameras

Review Date

April 2008

Best Deals



Read a Review



Photography Courses

photography courses

Search By Price

Digital Cameras Under £50
Digital Cameras £50 - £100
Digital Cameras £100 - £150
Digital Cameras £150 - £200
Digital Cameras £200 - £300
Digital Cameras £300 - £500
Digital Cameras £500 - £1000
Digital Cameras Over £1000

Search By Camera Type

Simple and Easy Digital Cameras
Pocket Sized Digital Cameras
Extra Zoom Digital Cameras
Super Zoom Digital Cameras
Advanced Digital Cameras
Waterproof Digital Cameras
Compact System Cameras
Digital SLRs

Search By Camera Brand

Canon Digital Cameras
Fuji Digital Cameras
Nikon Digital Cameras
Olympus Digital Cameras
Panasonic Digital Cameras
Sony Digital Cameras

Buyers Guides

Digital Cameras
Memory Cards
Digital SLRs
Major Features
Shutter Times
Batteries
Where to Buy

More Guides

Local Guides

All Local Guides
England
English Counties
London Locations
Northern Ireland
Scotland
Wales

News Feeds

XML RSS My MSN My Yahoo