Gear Up: Panasonic Lumix TS4

John Muir Trail Gear Check: Panasonic Lumix TS4 Camera

When I started looking for a camera to take with me on my hike along the John Muir Trail, I knew it had to be a rugged piece of gear. That’s why I decided on the Panasonic Lumix TS4.

Panasonic Lumix TS4

Why the Panasonic Lumix TS4?

First off, it has all the important proofs:

  • Waterproof
  • Dustproof
  • Shockproof
  • Freezeproof

If that’s not impressive, then consider it’s GPS-enabled with landmark-recognition, so it’ll remind me just where I was when I took some of the sure-to-be epic shots I’ll be taking. It even allows the user to create their own landmarks, which is a pretty neat function.

Now if that’s all it did, it would be enough. But it also comes with the really cool-sounding “Quad-Indicator” Yeah, that’s right. Quad. Indicator. Cool name, sure, but what does it mean?

It means that in addition to the aforementioned GPS, it has a compass, an altimeter/depth indicator, and, yes, even a barometer, to “help keep memories longer and more accurate.*” I can’t speak to the veracity of that last claim (I’m not sure that weather conditions will enhance my memory of past events), but it’s a pretty useful camera.

Oh, and thanks to its Leica lens, it takes great pictures (12.1 megapixels) and full HD video (1920 x 1080), too. You can see some of the photos I’ve taken with it in this set on Flickr.

It’s worth mentioning that with all these added functions, it’s a bit of a power hog. I’m not sure I can get two weeks of use out a single battery, so I’m bringing an extra. Another gripe: the battery charger isn’t USB-enabled; it needs a standard wall jack. Mighty inconvenient when you’re in the middle of nowhere.

Yes, even with those downsides, it’s a good camera for an adventure.

*This claim is from the Panasonic website. You can read it for yourself here.


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