Five goes kayaking

When I posted about my selection of a tough camera I had yet to truly try it out. Now the Olympus Tough TG-5 has been taken on a couple of kayaking trips around the Skerries of Arisaig on the west coast of Scotland and I can report on how it performed.

These sample images were shot as raw and put through Lightroom with the Camera Vivid profile applied, along with a few other adjustments and a crop down to 16:9 aspect ratio:

Red pole navigation hazard marker

Me in a Perception Expression 14

Me in a Perception Expression 15

In addition to numerous stills we also shot several video clips, opting for the 4k resolution (3840 x 2160 pixels). Obviously the best playback option is to watch this full screen on a 4k display but it will also look good on QHD (2560 × 1440 pixels, this is what my Eizo ColorEdge gives me) or otherwise regular HD.


There were only a few minor issues, here's a quick summary:
  • With no viewfinder composing on the rear screen can sometimes be tricky in bright light.
  • On our first outing I had accidentally selected Pro-Capture mode, this takes several consecutive frames to allow the best (decisive) moment to be selected. It works well but in conjunction with shooting RAW+jpeg it did mean having a huge number of files to process.
  • The interface for uploading the files is only USB2 so uploading a few hundred files takes a while.
  • I used the Lightroom import and this resulted in having all the files in the same folder for the upload date rather than splitting them into the original shoot dates. Not sure but this maybe an issue with the EXIF data from the camera. I then had to manually re-organize the files, no big deal but it's an extra task that shouldn't be necessary.


Overall I'm very pleased with how the TG-5 performed. Water and getting a few knocks were not a worry. The image quality is good for the size of camera (compact). The raws process quite well and the 4k footage is quite adequate. Options like Pro-Capture mode could really help in capturing key action moments. Features like geo-tagging all the photos is an added bonus, helpful on longer trips and when out at sea with more limited landmarks to pinpoint positions.


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