Design and features
Editor's note: this camera is the same as the Lumix DMC-FH2, with the differences being a higher resolution sensor (16-megapixels on the FH5 vs. 14-megapixels on the FH2) and a shorter battery life (260 shots on the FH5 vs. 270 shots on the FH2).
This bare-bones slimline camera isn't going to turn too many heads with its design, given that it's encased in a brushed metal finish with precious few buttons and dials to get stuck into. Along the top sit a shutter button, zoom rocker and the power switch, while at the back things are even more simple with a 2.7-inch, 230,000-dot screen flanked by menu and control buttons.
Taking up a tiny footprint thanks to its 1.8cm depth, photographers with larger hands might find the controls just a tad too dainty. Take, for example, the switch that changes between playback and camera modes — so tiny you need to get a fingernail into it. Elsewhere on the spec sheet, top-line numbers are pretty consistent with a camera in this price-range, with a 28mm wide-angle lens, optical image stabilisation and 4x optical zoom. Inside is a 16-megapixel CCD sensor, in front of which sits a Leica-branded DC lens with a slow maximum aperture range of f/3.1-6.5.
Within the camera, options are kept very simple, with just intelligent automatic, normal picture, scene modes and movie mode to choose from. Colour modes available include the now-Panasonic regulars of "happy" (saturates colours), black-and-white, sepia and standard colour. Connectivity is via a single AV/proprietary mini-USB out, and the FH5 uses a rechargeable lithium-ion battery with SD/SDHC/SDXC cards.
General shooting metrics (in seconds)
- Time to first shot
- JPEG shot-to-shot time
- Shutter lag
- Panasonic Lumix FH220.127.116.11
Continuous shooting speed (longer bars indicate better performance)
- Panasonic Lumix FH50.9
- Sony Cyber-shot W5700.5
Panasonic rates the battery of the FH5 at 260 shots.