Panasonic FS12

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS12 front
  • 12MP - 1/2.3" Sensor
  • 2.7" Fixed Display
  • ISO 80 - 1600 (Bump to 6400)
  • Optical Image Stabilization
  • 640 x 480 video
  • 31-124mm (F2.8-5.9) lens
  • 129g - 97 x 55 x 22mm
  • Launched April 2009
  • Read full specs
  • Alternatives
  • Size Comparison
  • FAQ

Panasonic FS12 summary

Panasonic FS12 is Panasonic's Ultracompact camera initially launched on April of 2009. The camera houses a 12MP, CCD 1/2.3" sized sensor and has a max resolution of 4000 x 3000.

The FS12 comes in at #137 out of 151 in Ultracompact cameras & over all #1228 out of 1465 for digital cameras in our database. You should look at our Smart camera search to find camera rankings based on your personal criteria.

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The following is a graph of different factors used in the rating system.

Panasonic FS12 family

The Panasonic FS12 has a history of related digital cameras. Underneath, you can see all earlier and most recent models alongside main specifications.

ModelVisualizeLensResolutionSensor SizeReleased
Panasonic-Lumix-DMC-FP5 front thumbnailPanasonic FP5
FS12 vs FP5
Panasonic-Lumix-DMC-FP7 front thumbnailPanasonic FP7
FS12 vs FP7
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Panasonic-Lumix-DMC-FP3 front thumbnailPanasonic FP3
FS12 vs FP3
Panasonic-Lumix-DMC-FP1 front thumbnailPanasonic FP1
FS12 vs FP1
Panasonic-Lumix-DMC-FP2 front thumbnailPanasonic FP2
FS12 vs FP2
Panasonic-Lumix-DMC-FP8 front thumbnailPanasonic FP8
FS12 vs FP8
Samsung Releases Faster Versions of EVO MicroSD Cards
Panasonic-Lumix-DMC-FS12 front thumbnailPanasonic FS1231-124mm
Panasonic-Lumix-DMC-FS15 front thumbnailPanasonic FS15
FS12 vs FS15

Panasonic FS12 Pros and Cons

Below is a collection of pluses and minuses of the Panasonic FS12 based on features which are typically considered important in a camera.

above average minimum ISO (80)
has built in flash
image stabilization (Optical)
in built zoom lens (31-124mm 4.0 x zoom)
does not have HDMI socket
does not have headphone socket
does not have mic socket
does not have Time Lapse mode
does not offer selfie friendly display
external flash not possible
fixed screen
focusing manually not possible
lack of phase detect AF
lack of RAW support
lens is fixed (fixed lens mount)
low resolution screen (230 thousand dots)
manual mode not possible
max zoom aperture not good (f5.9)
megapixel count low (12 megapixels)
no aperture priority
no shutter priority mode
screen is somewhat small (2.7 inch)
slow continuous shooting (2.0 frames/s)
sluggish maximum aperture (f2.8)
very small sensor (1/2.3")
video quality not great (640 x 480 pixels)
wide angle not good (31mm)
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Panasonic FS12 Sensor info

The sensor specification on the Panasonic FS12 is 6.08mm x 4.56mm (1/2.3"). The 28 mm² sensor has the capability to capture 4000 x 3000 pixels and aspect ratios of 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9. The camera comes with Image Stabilization (Optical). In body stabilization is more desirable than digital stabilization since the latter can lead to cropping.

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The CCD sensor has 12 megapixels and delivers a native ISO range of 80 to 1600. This ISO can be widened digitally to a high of 6400. Sadly, RAW files are not saved therefore you have less margin for error.

The picture underneath displays the FS12's sensor dimensions in comparison to other common sizes. The FS12 sensor has a crop factor of 5.9 and is highlighted in green.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS12 sensor size Photography Glossary

To get a sense of various aspect ratios, you can refer to the visual below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Panasonic FS12 dimensions

Panasonic FS12 weighs around 0.28 pounds (129g / 4.55 oz) & the measurement of the camera is 97mm x 55mm x 22mm (3.8" x 2.2" x 0.9"). The weight of typical Ultracompact camera is 121g and the Panasonic FS12 is very much the same in comparison with its rivals.

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Down below is a shot of the Panasonic FS12 with a soda so you're able to get a feel for its scale.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS12 dimensions scale

The top view underneath will show you the button design on the FS12.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS12 topview buttons dials

Panasonic FS12 Lens info

The FS12 has a built in lens featuring a focal range of 31-124mm making it a 4.0 x zoom which is not great nevertheless it will be useful in a few cases.

At the widest 31mm, it comes with an aperture of f2.8 which is somewhat slow and not very good for low light events and you will likely find it difficult to get a shallow depth of field. You might also need to increase the ISO producing noisy pictures. At the tele end, 124mm comes at f5.9 making it fairly sluggish and you might need to utilize slow shutter speeds.

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Panasonic FS12 Connectivity

The FS12 has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes

Digital cameras that incorporate NFC and / or Bluetooth compatibility can be controlled wirelessly via smartphones. You will be able to send pictures and sometimes adjust camera settings without connecting straight to the camera.

Some applications even provide a Liveview and hit the shutter if you are not close to the camera. If the camera comes with a HDMI port, it can be connected to an external screen. The majority of cameras enable you to charge the battery pack through the USB socket.

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Panasonic FS12 Video info

The max video quality on the Panasonic FS12 is 640 x 480 and you can shoot in Motion JPEG format. 480p is low for today's requirements. You really should shoot for at least 1080p quality for video recording. The camera does not have a microphone and / or headphone socket which means that you have little control over the audio. It is probably a better idea to have a look at another model in case you want better audio for your video clips.

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Panasonic FS12 Weather Sealing

There is no environment proofing on the Panasonic FS12 so you need to be careful in wet and dusty conditions.

Panasonic FS12 Display and Viewfinder

The Panasonic FS12 is equipped with a 2.7 inch fixed display screen supporting a resolution of 230 thousand dots.

Please note that the display has no touch support.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS12 screen and viewfinder Photobucket discusses licensing 13 billion images with AI firms

The ViewFinder specifications for Panasonic FS12 are below:

  • ViewFinder None

Viewfinders are rather handy during sunny outdoor conditions which can make the camera display washed out and difficult to see.

Panasonic FS12 Shutter info

Panasonic FS12 continuous shooting rate is 2.0 frames/s. The maximum shutter speed is 1/2000 sec.

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Panasonic FS12 Flash and Hot shoe info

Panasonic FS12 comes with only built-in flash lacking external flash support.

Panasonic FS12 Autofocus info

Panasonic FS12 comes with just Contrast Detect Auto Focus & is missing Phase Detect Auto Focus. Phase Detection autofocusing is more snappier & precise when compared to Contrast Detect autofocusing.

Panasonic FS12 lacks manual focus. Manual focus mode can be useful during low light conditions or you require more exact control on depth of field.

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Panasonic FS12 Battery life

The usual Ultracompact camera battery life is 214. Nikon L32 comes with the maximum (320) battery life within this class of cameras.

Here is a listing of Ultracompact cameras which have the strongest battery life:

Panasonic FS12 for different categories of photography

The following bar chart displays a summary of the Panasonic FS12 for different categories of photography. To learn more, browse to the specific section underneath.

Panasonic FS12 Portrait photography advice

The Panasonic FS12 receives a points total of 21 which is bad, meaning that it is just not appropriate for portrait photography. Taking portrait photos leans heavily to sensor dimension, support for RAW photos along with the ability to utilize off-camera flash.

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manual focus not available
no manual control
external flash not possible
resolution not great (12MP)
sensor size is small (1/2.3")
lacks RAW support

Panasonic FS12 Street photography highlights

Getting a average points tally of 57, the Panasonic FS12 is somewhat appropriate to buy for street photography. A good street photography camera has a good balance of picture quality plus portability.

Photography Glossary
has image stabilization (Optical)
screen is fixed
very small sensor (1/2.3")
doesn't have RAW files

Panasonic FS12 Sports photography info

A bad sports photography score of 25 suggests the Panasonic FS12 is just not appropriate for photographing sports. A camera really should have good tracking and fast continuous shooting for sports photography.

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built in image stabilization (Optical)
continuous shooting slow (2.0 frames per second)
no shutter priority
megapixel count low (12MP)
sensor is very small (1/2.3")
no phase detect AF

Panasonic FS12 Travel photography details

Size is pretty crucial when getting a camera for travel. Overall, the Panasonic FS12 gets a moderate 51 as a travelling camera which is fairly appropriate to take with you on your trips.

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flash built-in
missing Timelapse function
sensor resolution low (12 megapixels)
display is not selfie friendly
wide angle not the best (31mm)
sluggish maximum aperture (f2.8)

Landscape photography with Panasonic FS12

For anybody planning to pick a digital camera for landscape pictures, the most significant factor will no doubt be image quality. The Panasonic FS12 with it's bad grade of 28 for a landscape camera is just not appropriate in the current marketplace.

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built in image stabilization (Optical)
manual focus not available
lens is fixed (fixed lens mount)
wide angle not the best (31mm)
sluggish max aperture (f2.8)
small screen (2.7 inches)
no manual control
sensor resolution low (12 megapixels)
sensor size is small (1/2.3")
doesn't have RAW files
does not have Time Lapse recording

Panasonic FS12 Vlogging features

A camera for vlogging should have a moving display, microphone port and if possible IBIS. Taking all things into account, the Panasonic FS12 is just not appropriate for vlogging as it receives a bad rating of 25.

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has image stabilization (Optical)
wide angle not the best (31mm)
somewhat slow maximum aperture (f2.8)
screen is not selfie friendly
low res video (640 x 480 pxls)
no external microphone port

Panasonic FS12 Alternatives

If you are interested in alternatives to the FS12, here is a number of the top placed cameras that fall into the family of Ultracompact.

The chart underneath will give you an overview of the FS12 vs it's top scoring competitors suggested above.

There are more cameras you may take into account as alternative options. To go through a full comparison, click the "compare" link.

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General Information
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS12
Physical type
Sensor Information
Sensor type
Sensor size
Sensor dimensions
6.08 x 4.56mm
Sensor area
Sensor resolution
12 megapixels
Anti aliasing filter
Aspect ratio
4:3, 3:2 and 16:9
Max resolution
4000 x 3000
RAW support
Max native ISO
Max enhanced ISO
Min native ISO
Manual focus
Touch to focus
AF continuous
Single AF
Tracking AF
Selective AF
AF center weighted
Multi area AF
AF live view
Face detect focusing
Contract detect focusing
Phase detect focusing
Lens mounting type
fixed lens
Lens focal range
31-124mm (4.0x)
Maximum aperture
Macro focus range
Crop factor
Display type
Fixed Type
Display size
2.7 inch
Resolution of display
230 thousand dots
Selfie friendly
Touch screen
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder type
DXO scores
DXO Overall score
not tested
DXO Color Depth score
not tested
DXO Dynamic range score
not tested
DXO Low light score
not tested
Min shutter speed
60 secs
Max shutter speed
1/2000 secs
Continuous shutter rate
2.0 frames/s
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Manual mode
Change WB
Image stabilization
Built-in flash
Flash range
6.30 m
Flash options
Auto, On, Off, Red-eye, Slow Sync
External flash
AE bracketing
WB bracketing
AF area
Center weighted
Video features
Video resolutions
848 x 480 (30 fps), 640 x 480 (30 fps), 320 x 240 (30 fps)
Max video resolution
Video data format
Motion JPEG
Mic port
Headphone port
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
Environment sealing
Water proof
Dust proof
Shock proof
Crush proof
Freeze proof
129g (0.28 lbs)
Physical dimensions
97 x 55 x 22mm (3.8" x 2.2" x 0.9")
Self timer
Yes (2 or 10 sec)
Time lapse recording
Type of storage
SD/SDHC card, Internal
Card slots
Retail pricing