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Saturday, October 22, 2011

Panasonic HM-TA20 Blue - Shoot & Share

I recently got my hands on Panasonics latest rugged camera the HM-TA20, for me this camera meets all my needs as a parent and avid beach go, fisher man and snap alcoholic.
My kids love to take photo's and for Christmas the kids all got camera's but we didn't like to take them to the beach, just to many opportunity's for it to go for a swim. That was until we got the HM-TA20.
First Impressions
The HM-TA20 is Waterproof to 3m, Shockproof to 1.5m and dustproof all the hall marks of a child friendly camera.
The Camera looks great and feels solid and practical in the hand, as I stated before in my teaser blog my youngest is 3 and can use the camera with ease, even with my large hands I can take photo's one handed or with two.
I was surprised with the actual size of the device, I thought that it would have been smaller, so was impressed that it was a decent size.

The Specs

Full HD Mobile Camera - 1920 x 1080 with 8MP Still Photo

Features Overview

Available in Blue & Orange
  • Full High Definition – 1920x1080p
  • 8MP Still Photo
  • 4x Digital Zoom
  • Records in MPEG-4 AVC/H.264
  • E.I.S – Electronic Image Stabilsation
  • 3m Waterproof
  • 1.5m Shockproof
  • Dustproof
  • Built in USB
  • SDXC Compatible
  • 3.0” Touch Screen LCD
The Camera
Front view of the HM-TA20, looks smart and nice clean lines… View of the LCD screen and on screen menu, which I will talk about latter…
Power button bottom and Lock LCD touch screen top… Two button combo to unlock the HDMI, Reset button and Headphone Jack ports…
Flap open from bottom to top – HDMI Port, Reset Button, Headphone Jack… The USB Connector is found in another flap below the HDMI flap…
Once open you will find the USB connecter and a Grey square button… By pressing the Grey square button, the USB Connector will pop out and lock enabling you to connect to your PC.
At the bottom of the HM-TA20 you will find another Waterproof flap that houses the SD Card slot… With the Flap open the SD card slot is in the middle, the circular slot at the top is in fact mini stand that comes with the TA-20…

The Ultimate Test

Have you ever been to a 9 Year Girls party with 7 screaming girls and throw in a 10 & 3 year boys you have a nightmare of a time thinking of ways to entertain them... not this time I just threw them the HM-TA20 and said have some fun.

The girls loved it taking pics of each other possing and just having fun, when the weather started to change for the worst and we had slight rain, no problems the kids kept taking photo's knowing the
HM-TA20 could handle it.

The Camera came through the ordeal a bit over used but other than being passed from many a hands no damage. Before I gave the camera to the little Princes I asked them that I would need their feed back on the camera and here is what they had to say...

"Loved it! was so easy to use..."

"Dose it come in Pink?..."

"It was so fun to use..."

"I want one..."

Things I loved and disliked

Overall I personally loved this camea and so did my family, so much so it now has become and main family camera, I still use my HTC Sensation smartphone (8 mp camera) as I my personal camera as I have it with me all the time, but wouldn't want to take it to the beach. My wife Lisa loved the simple to use menu system and that you just took the photo and let HM-TA20 do it's thing.

At the end of the day that is what is the clincher for me its Waterproof to 3m, Shockproof from 1.5m (This was tested by our three year old from about 50cm, not a problem for the HM-TA20) and is dust proof... that is a hell of a combo for a camera any every day family would want to use in Australia.

Whether you are tramping the Kimberley, Snorkling at Rottnest Island or visiting the Perth Zoo, the HM-TA20 will be there through thick and thin, through sunshine or rain.

The only thing that I would personally change and its not a deal breaker is the menu showing on the LCD, why have such a nice large screen and have half of it obsucred by the menu? Why can't the menu be on a pop up, say swip up and the meu pops up or have a small menu button at the bottom right or left corner.

So would I recommend the Panasonic HM-TA20 , Yes I would and so would my family, the HM-TA20 was so much fun to use and got us to have fun as a family taking photo's of each other and around the house.



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