Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS15 review

A 12-megapixel digital compact camera packed with hi-tech features

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For those of us who prefer to take control of our cameras, there's the Normal Picture mode.

This is still semi-automatic, but among other accessible settings, you can access a dedicated Macro mode, adjust or switch off the flash, and dial in Exposure Compensation. Plus 2-second and 10-second self-timer options if you want to be in the family portrait picture you're about to take.

The Macro mode enables you focus on objects just 3cm away. You need to be on the wide angle end of the lens for the Panasonic FS15 to focus, unless you select the special AF Macro and Macro zoom, which we found both worked better for taking close-ups

Flash settings include Auto, Auto/Red-Eye, Force Flash On and Force Flash Off so you decide exactly when the flash fires.


The Exposure Compensation is a major bonus as it enabled us to manually adjust the exposure so our shots appeared as we wanted. We were able to adjust in Exposure Compensation up to +/- two stops to make our images brighter or darker; this was helpful when taking portraits without flash and with a bright background and we wanted to brighten up the people in the scene.

Autofocus modes

In Normal Picture mode you can also choose from four AF modes; AF tracking – to help you focus on moving subjects; 11-area-focusing – which works much like the Auto AF Point Selection on a DSLR by using all focusing points to try and achieve focus on what the camera thinks you want to focus on. We found this generally tried to focus on whatever item was closest to the camera, not necessarily the item we wanted to focus on.

There's 1-area-focusing – which is basically the same as selecting the single central focusing point on a DSLR, and is helpful when you want to focus on whatever you've positioned in the centre of your composition. The final AF mode is Face Detection, as discussed above.

Scene modes

In Scene mode, you have a choice of 26 Scene modes (very similar to those available on the Panasonic ZX1) that suit a variety of situations. Most of more of a gimmick that really helpful and we rarely resorted to using any of them to be honest. But you might find the Sports, Sunset or Fireworks settings useful one day.

Tech Specs

Product TypeCompact Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Maximum Video Resolution640 x 480
Effective Camera Resolution12.1 Megapixel
Product FamilyLumix FS
HD Movie ModeNo
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, MultiMediaCard (MMC)
Image StabilizationOptical
Optical Zoom5x
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NamePanasonic
Screen Size6.9 cm (2.7")
Video FormatsQuickTime Motion JPEG
Viewfinder TypeNo
Weight (Approximate)116 g
Maximum Image Resolution4000 x 3000
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height54.4 mm
Width97 mm
Depth21.7 mm
Product SeriesFS
Focal Length5.60 mm to 26 mm
Image FormatsJPEG
Focus ModesAuto
Product ModelDMC-FS15
Product NameLumix DMC-FS15 Compact Camera
Product LineLumix
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberDMC-FS15EB-S
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

The DMC-FS15 features a 29mm wide-angle 5x optical zoom LEICA DC VARIO-ELMAR lens (35mm film camera equivalent: 29-145mm). Renowned in the film camera world for its superb performance and compact size, the LEICA DC VARIO-ELMAR lens inherits its outstanding quality and form. The 29mm wide-angle lens can be used to capture groups of people at parties and other indoor scenes, as well as magnificent architectural structures and landscapes. The 5x optical zoom allows you to capture distant subjects without degrading image quality.

Package Contents
  • Lumix DMC-FS15 Compact Camera
  • Battery Charger
  • Battery Pack
  • Battery case
  • AV Cable
  • USB Connection Cable
  • AC Cable
  • Hand Strap
  • CD-ROM