After much research I just bought a Lumix FT6 ($337)instead of the Olympus TG4 for an upcoming 10 day rafting trip. Although the TG4 has some nice features (such as RAW), at the end of the day I couldn't bring myself to spend $130 more for the TG4 given its high level of audible noise when taking video's. So far as the FT6 goes I haven't tested underwater performance yet, but test images in normal daylight (overcast or full sunshine) seem quite acceptable for a compact camera and the sunset mode gives better automatic exposure/colour results than my DSLR does (these images are straight out of the camera other than being downsized to 800 pixels wide to fit this website).
I'm pretty impressed with the automatic panorama mode (works very well if the light across the field of view is fairly even).
Auto white balance seems to give fairly good colours most of the time and I like that you can take photos in different aspect ratios (6:4 or 16:9) since I'm not particularly keen on the standard 4:3 format of compact cameras. I also like the ease with which you can quickly manually adjust the exposure or autobracket. Full HD video performance looks good. My only significant let down is that there is only a choice between two apertures if you want to shoot in fully manual mode (f3.3 or f10). F10 is quite acceptable for landscape shots though. The camera's LCD screen is very bright, making it quite usable in bright sunshine. However, as has been the experience with all of my digital cameras, the actual image may look a bit dimmer on your computer monitor than it does on the camera's LCD screen (even though my monitor is fairly bright). I found that images straight from the camera were acceptably sharp, but to my eyes they did sometimes benefit slightly from applying additional auto sharpening in Photoshop Elements. I will be able to report back in a couple of months how it fared on the river for casual snaps of the trip (I will still use a DSLR for the more important shots though). I bought two extra batteries for this 10 day trip, as I suspect it will chew through them pretty quickly (at least the second party batteries were pretty inexpensive compared to DSLR batteries). The FT6 will also accompany me in my shirt pocket on future bushwalks so that I don't have to put down the backpack and pull out the big camera if I just want a snapshot. As none of the waterproof cameras I've seen seem to have a lens cap (they usually appear to have the lens sealed safely away behind a piece of toughened glass) I also bought a small camera bag so that the front of the camera needs less cleaning between uses on a trip.
Last edited by farefam
on Wed 21 Dec, 2016 12:18 am, edited 5 times in total.