The company’s sixth-generation premium underwater camera is the Olympus Tough TG-6. It features a camera of 12 Megapixels, a 4X optical zoom lens, various sensors, and, of course, significant element safety.
Olympus Tough TG-6: Price
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Olympus Tough TG-6: Build Quality
As robust as they come, the TG-6 is. It is 15m / 50ft waterproof, dustproof, 1 to 2.1m / 7ft shockproof, crushproof up to 100kg / 220lbs, and freezeproof up to -10 ° C / 14 ° F.
It also features dual-pane safety glass construction with superior anti-fogging on top of that. In reality, the glass on the rear LCD panel looks quite a bit thicker than the TG-5’s. Your poor handset will wince at the punishment this screen might bear.
Even, though it would take a hammer to literally smash it, the panel could probably (and certainly did, in our tests) pick up marks and bruises, but if you’re banging it around, don’t expect the show to remain pristine.
That said, fingerprints seem rather impervious to the lens itself. We can’t call it a selling point in good faith, but it was a breath of fresh air not to have to brush stray smudges off the lens each time we fired.
However, it is worth noting that the plastic thumb grip panel popped off the body in our very first drop test (which you can see in the above video). It would be quick to reassemble, and it would not impair the operability of the camera, but it was a little disappointing to find such a weak spot. In later bash-testing, little more came off.
Olympus Tough TG-6: Key Specifications
- 12MP, 1/2.3″ BSI-CMOS sensor
- 25-100mm equivalent F2.0-4.9 stabilized lens
- Waterproof to 15m (45ft), shockproof from 2.1m (7ft), crushproof to 100kgf (220lbf), freezeproof to -10°C (14°F), dustproof
- 3″, 1.04M-dot display (non-touch)
- Raw support
- 1cm (0.4″) minimum focusing distance
- 20 fps burst shooting
- Pro Capture mode saves photos before and after the shutter release is pressed, to help you capture the right moment
- 4K/30p video
- Built-in GPS, altimeter, compass, thermometer, and accelerometer
- Optional conversion lenses and flash accessories
Olympus Tough TG-6: Modes
A slew of high-speed video recording modes is new to the Tough TG-6. It can also capture 1080p at up to 120fps, 720p at 240fps and 360p at 480fps, in addition to being able to film 4K footage at 30fps.
It’s a genius feature on a camera like this to shoot 120 frames at 1080p, making it a feasible intense camera for vlogs and blogs to capture video. And while most people are likely unlikely to drop all the way to 720 or 360p, it should be enough to excite every Instagrammer to have the promise of super slow-mo 480fps holiday footage.
A fresh underwater mode is another new trick the TG-6 has over its older brother to supplement the current large, snapshot, macro and HDR options: Underwater Microscope.
It has to be said that among the absolute highlights of the TG-6 are the macro and microscope features. The camera has an absolutely crazy close-focusing distance in addition to focus stacking and focus bracketing; it will focus up to 1cm from the lens on paper, but we were able to take pictures of the subject literally touching the lens and the camera still finding focus.
The TG-6 will fire at 20fps for burst shooting and we’ve been able to log 47 frames per burst. It also has a Pro Capture variant, included in the Olympus OM-D E-M1X flagship, which begins buffering shots when you half-press the shutter and holds six pictures to make sure that vital moment is not lost.
Olympus Tough TG-6: Image Quality
When shooting close up at this widest setting, the wide-angle 25mm-equivalent view of the TG-6 invariably offers a subtle fisheye effect, although we find that photos are close to overexposure in especially bright and sunny settings, with a lack of highlight information.
Of course, if you grasp this at the time of filming, it is possible to manually turn down the exposure or change the ISO level, but bright conditions also impact the brightness of the LCD panel, which does not help matters.
While it is beneficial to have a zoom lens, the range offered here is modest, and we found that detail suffered towards the full telephoto environment, especially when shooting handheld. The operator must be vigilant to prevent stray fingers or the camera strap falling into the edges of the shots, as in any camera in which the lens is internally stacked (and so is not proud of the body).
Olympus Tough TG-6: Conclusion
The Olympus Tough TG-6 seems to be indistinguishable from the TG-5 at first sight and also at second and third sight. However, the TG-6 offers some worthwhile new functionality including a screen that is twice the resolution, high-speed camera modes and a new underwater mode.
This is the best all-proof camera out there if you’re looking for an outdoor camera that can go into the water, get coated in sand, be dropped on concrete, and still take pictures and video even at freezing temperatures.