Lumix DMC-FT6: Small but tough enough to take the hard knocks

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT6 comes with Wi-Fi capabilities.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT6 comes with Wi-Fi capabilities.PHOTO: PANASONIC

The Lumix DMC-FT6 is a simple, fuss-free rugged camera that is small, unobtrusive and pretty light, which makes it a better fit in the hands of the little ones.

While the plastic frame feels and looks like any regular casing, it can take a beating. It survived our drop tests relatively unscathed, save for a few small dings on the back panel.

The LCD monitor is probably the weak point, as scratches are quite visible on it after it was put through the mill.

 

You can pass this to your young ones to snap pictures on the beach or underwater and not worry about losing a camera because of irreparable damage.

It is very intuitive to use, too, with most options just a screen or two away and with different modes helpfully represented by colourful icons for quick selection.

The number of modes is quite limited, though. There are only 10 different ones, including the Sports and Snow mode. There are also two underwater modes, Beach & Snorkelling and Advanced Underwater, with the former for shallow-water shots and the latter for depths beyond 3m.

The squishy plastic buttons on the back panel may pose a problem for those with butterfingers or large thumbs.

The Lumix starts up quickly and the auto mode on the camera takes passable images, with colours and lighting generally quite accurate.

Photos are clear and sharp, although some of them appeared artificially brighter even without exposure compensation.

The 6x optical zoom can get you closer to the action, but at the risk of grainier pictures as it adds a fair bit of noise. There is no facial recognition, which can mar some otherwise decent shots.

Importantly, it comes with Wi-Fi capabilities, so you can immediately send over those holiday snaps to your smartphone.

•Verdict: A portable, easy-to-use camera that can take punishment with ease.


TECH SPECS

PRICE: $399

IMAGE SENSOR: 16-megapixel CMOS sensor

WATERPROOF: 13m

SHOCKPROOF: 2m

DISPLAY: 3-inch TFT Screen LCD

WEIGHT: 214g with battery


RATING

DESIGN: 3/5

FEATURES: 3/5

PERFORMANCE: 4/5

OVERALL: 3/5

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 01, 2016, with the headline 'Small but tough enough to take the hard knocks'. Print Edition | Subscribe