Panasonic has announced the launch of its new rugged 14.1MP digital camera, named as Panasonic LUMIX DMC-TS2, which features HD video recording capability in AVCHD Lite format and enhanced toughness (compared with LUMIX TS1) – waterproof to 33 feet (10 meters), shockproof to 10 feet (2 meters) and dustproof, as well as freezeproof to 14° F (-10° C), ideal for extreme active outdoor use.

“We have been very pleased to see that consumers found true value in Panasonic’s first rugged digital camera, knowing that they could take it on their outdoor adventures where it could withstand drops, water and dust. But even more, we saw that users enjoyed our LUMIX TS1 for their daily photo needs – they were able to take high-quality video and photo without worrying if they casually tossed it in their bag or used it in the rain,” commented David Briganti, Senior Product Manager for Imaging at Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company. “The new LUMIX TS2 gets tougher and we expect it to be a key product in 2010, as its rugged features are becoming even more desirable for active users, especially with this year’s new freezeproof capabilities. Families will enjoy this digital camera, both for their own outdoor activities, vacations, but also so they can allow children to take photos without the anxiety they might otherwise feel of damage.”

Features of Panasonic LUMIX TS2:

  • Airtight body protected against water immersion, dust and sand
  • Venus Engine HD II, and 28mm wide-angle LEICA DC VARIO ELMAR lens with 4.6x optical zoom
  • 2.7-inch (230,000 pixels) Intelligent LCD screen with a wide-viewing angle
  • Record HD video in Motion JPEG and AVCHD Lite formats
  • Dolby Digital Stereo Creator for high quality audio
  • Panasonic’s iA mode includes POWER O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabilizer), Face Recognition, Intelligent Scene Selector, Intelligent Resolution, Intelligent Zoom, AF Tracking, Intelligent ISO Control, Intelligent Exposure and more
  • Sonic Speed Auto Focus enables super-fast response time, and shutter release time lag as short as approximately 0.005 second, focusing on object in approximately 0.24 second(wide-end)/0.28 second (tele-end), plus short startup time of just 1.1 second
  • Happy Mode, High Dynamic and Video Divide function
  • Captures up to 360 images with single battery charge

Panasonic LUMIX DMC-TS2 rugged digital camera will be available in 4 variants of colour – silver, blue, orange and yellow, but the price and launch date of LUMIX TS2 have yet to be announced.

UPDATE: Panasonic LUMIX TS2 is scheduled to be available in mid-March 2010 for around $400.