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Old Feb 19, 2007, 8:04 AM   #1
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I've narrowed my choices to the S3 IS and the DMC-FZ50.......but can't decide. Continuous (burst) shooting is very important to me. From what I read, the S3 IS is slightly faster. Anyone know for sure? Also - is the 6 mega-pixel THAT much of a step down from the 10 mp offered with the FZ50? I usually don't print larger than 8 x 10. Any opinions on these items in particular -- and overall opinions of the 2 cameras would be so helpful!! Thank you!
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Old Feb 19, 2007, 10:34 AM   #2
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Unfortunately you did not tell us much about the kind of photos you like or want to take. We know that burst shooting is important to you, with both cameras being about the same in terms of burst shooting, in my opinion, we ought to consider the physical size of these two cameras. The FZ-50 is physically much larger than the S-3. Personally I would find the size of the S-3 much more convenient.

The megapixel difference is not a factor to be concerned about. You should ask yourself: Yes, the FZ 50 has more mp, but what is the photo quality? When you cram more pixels on to the very same size imager, noise increases and image quality decreases. Thus, the image quality will be equal to, or better on the Canon S-3 camera probably than the FZ-50 camera.

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Old Feb 19, 2007, 1:41 PM   #3
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Not only does 6MP vs. 10MP not make that much difference in resolution for 8x10" prints, overall image quality on consumer cameras, with today's technology, is often better. They are packing more and more megapixels onto the same size sensor. That means less sensor space per pixel.

Less megapixels, and therefore a larger "pixel pitch", can mean a cleaner image, with less "noise", or graininess (particularly at higher ISO), but at the cost of less resolution. So you will still want the additional MP if you are doing larger prints from low ISO shots (where noise tends to be low on all of these). And if you are going to crop much, you definately want as many MP as you can get. Otherwise, you might prefer the quality of a lower MP camera.

As for how large you can print, with 6MP, an 8x10" print would be 275 PPI (pixels per inch). 300PPI is considered the standard for fine art prints, so you'd be pretty close to that. And it should still look good at 200PPI, or 10x15".

If that's sufficient, you might want to compare the 6MP FZ7 as well--its smaller and faster than the S3.

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Old Feb 19, 2007, 10:28 PM   #4
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I think S3 is better interms of speed and convenience. Whatever is your shooting position you can take picture comfortably because of variangle LCD. besides, the noise reduction of panasonic is not good.
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Old Feb 19, 2007, 10:53 PM   #5
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I have the Panasonic FZ30 and like it a lot, and don't find the noise to be a huge problem. At ISO 80 and 100 the images are just fine and usually don't require any cleanup, particularly if you shoot RAW.

As for the FZ50, I think they pushed the limits of the sensor too far. While they improved the noise reduction dramatically, images at ISO 100 do not look as clean as they did on the FZ30. If you go above ISO 100 the noise reduction does make the image look a lot smoother than it did on the FZ30, but the way the details get smudged out, I think you'd actually be better off with a 5 megapixel image that doesn't need the noise reduction.
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