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Mine Exploration Forum

Author Panasonic Lumix FT7 Dive rated compact camera

Avatar of royfellows

Joined: 13/06/2007
Location: Great Wyrley near Walsall

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Panasonic Lumix FT7 Dive rated compact camera
Posted: 30/04/2019 18:44:26
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The Panasonic Lumix FT 7 was announced about a year ago and came onto the market at about £400. Biding my time, now as expected, prices have dropped and I was able to pick up a manufacturer refurb (read brand new return, buyer didn’t like it) for £150 off eBay.

Attraction is the fact that’s a dive rated 31 metres, impact resistant, compact camera with a viewfinder and optional manual settings.

My first impression of the camera was good as it has a solid (its metal not plastic) feel to it, and holds well in the right hand like a larger camera rather than the usual finger and thumb feel of this type of camera.

Its main purpose for me is the attraction of being able to just slip it into a pocket to take underground, no worries about water and if it gets plastered just wash it off under a tap.

I took it up to Nenthead over Easter and tried it out in Rampgill, Brownley, and Marlbeck near Middleton in Teesdale.
First two mines it was a tripod job with multiple LED lighting. Drawback is that it only has the choice of 2 focal length settings, F3.3 and F10. I am usually permanently set on the middle range, say F5.6, so this presented some issues. I am a right fusspot and set sensitivity to ASA 100 for manual, it now occurs that I could use 200 with negligible loss due to the 20 meg pixel and stick with the F10.

Anyway, the results look fairly good so far.

(click image to open full size image in new window)

(click image to open full size image in new window)

Marlbeck was done differently. Full “Intelligent Auto” and the Imolent DX 80 on turbo at 32,000 lumens, camera handheld and the ‘torch’ if that’s a fair description, held out as far away as possible.
The photos look OK but properties sheet indicates some at ISO 1600 F3.3! They were a bit overexposed so had to darken them down in Photoshop.

(click image to open full size image in new window)

Maybe the torch was on a downer, but I was getting better from the Fuji XP120 I had before. Possibly the mine has different light absorption to Goginan where I was using the Fuji, it was on ISO 200 and 400 at the lower F stops.

There is another thing with it as well. Switch on and a pointless message about ensuring cover closed before the diving I wont be doing, another screen to OK. So I just switch on and press OK twice in quick succession without bothering to read the messages.
Wish I could disable this stuff like I have done with my car, at least it doesn’t interrupt my photo shoot to tell me to have a cup of coffee. Grrrr.

Apart from this I like it.

The viewfinder is so much to my taste and the feel of thing is very good. Bad workmen blame their tools, good workmen learn how to use them to best advantage. No need to take reading glasses now.


Looking forward to NAMHO 2019. www.cambrianmines.co.uk
Moore Books: Specialist Books I.A. Recordings: Mining and Industrial History DVDs Starless River - Caving Store Explore a Disused Welsh Slate Mine
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