Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH5


A new point and shoot camera

Panasonic introduced to its FH series two new models, the Lumix DMC-FH5 and FH2, the difference between the two being the pixel resolution, the former is 16 megapixel and the latter 14 megapixel. The models feature a slim design and a wide-angle lens with 4x zoom.

You’ll be impressed to find out that the slim camera actually packs powerful features worthy of the Lumix brand, which we’ll detail below, with the test results and review conclusion.

Venus Engine VI

The DMC-FH5 features Venus Engine VI, the result being better resolution performance, auto focusing, start up speed and not least, zooming capabilities. The camera is both small and light at only 19mm thick and 120 grams. The design is simple, the basic for this kind of small cameras. On the rear, there is a 2.7 inch TFT LCD display with 230,000 dot resolution that features AUTO Power CD mode and High Angle mode. On the right side of the display there are the usual buttons, the five way control for the basic functions like timer, flash and macro modes, and then there are the mode, Q.Menu and display buttons and the switch for playback and recording. Panasonic-LUMIX-DMC-FH5

The shutter release is very nice, based on a different push system than the usual. Before pushing the button all the way down there is a first step that allows you to focus on your subject. This system is quite ingenious, promises nice shot pictures and works fine in the tests performed by review team.

Up to ISO 6400

ISO sensitivity varies from 100 to 1600, but it can extent to ISO 6400 in High Sensitive mode. Using Intelligent Multiple metering, the DMC-FH5 can offer six white balance settings, including four fixed presets plus Auto and Manual.

The DMC FH5 uses Intelligent Resolution technology which basically ensures that the entire image will benefit from natural clarity.

MEGA Optical Image Stabilization

The Intelligent Auto mode is a set of preset settings that allow quality shots to be taken by anyone. This iA mode is met also in previous models, but the Lumix DMC-FH5 come with two new iA functions, the AF tracking and Intelligent Exposure. The AF tracking is meant to lock an every subject and continue focusing on it, regardless of the fact that you follow the steps of the shutter release. The Intelligent Exposure feature makes sure that each and every part of the picture is equally exposed, eliminating extra shadowing or highlights on specific parts of the image. Among the iA features, there are also the MEGA Optical Image Stabilization which eliminates the motion blur, Intelligent ISO Control, which reduces blur when the subject is in motion, the well known Face Detection feature that speaks for itself, and also an Intelligent Scene Selector that auto detects the environment and selects the best option from Night Portrait, Portrait, Macro, Scenery, Night Scenery and Sunset.

720p HD videos

Having so many features to go through, testing this camera took a lot of time, but was enjoyable. We realized that this camera is good enough for an experimented photographer, but it also helps a lot the untrained. Of course this is a big plus for the device, which has a wider range of possible buyers.

Concerning the movie mode, we were able to record continuously 11 minutes of video, because that is approximately what you can get with a 2GB card. The Panasonic DMC-FH5 can record 720p HD video at 24fps and the video is encoded at an average bit rate of 25Mb/s.

Review conclusion

Our overall opinion is that you won’t encounter difficulties in using the Lumix DMC-FH5 camera, only if your hands are too big for the petite camera. The image quality is great, colors are natural and crisp and come with a handful of features that will definitely simplify the shooting process.

Technical specifications

* 4x optical zoom; 28mm wide-angle Leica lens
* Optical Sensor Resolution: 16.1 MP
* Display Size: 2.7 inches
* Height: 1.8 inches
* Width: 6.3 inches
* Weight: 0.96 pounds
* Capture images and video to SD/SDHC memory cards (not included)
* 720 HD video capture; LUMIX Image Uploader technology.