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Old Mar 14, 2011, 10:57 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by boula View Post
maybe..but I was thinking about next series in the summer to be just announced - that is gonna by some more with EXR cmos senzor... in style of fujifilm f550
EXR is Fuji's own proprietary technology. No one else offers anything similar.

Also, Canon already made their announcements for this year so save for maybe the odd model here and there, and perhaps an SX30 replacement, there won't be anything else until next year.
Disclaimer: I take photos of life rather than live to take photos and my opinions of cameras are reflected accordingly.
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 5:27 PM   #32
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Default Hi, mtclimber

It was your user name that did it for me. That, and the reasonable, measured and informed advice you provide in the quoted post. Since it's later in the year, I hope you've acquired more direct experience with the present crop of super zooms and can help me make a choice, as I won't have the opportunity to test drive likely candidates.

I've retired recently and intend to devote the greater part of my time to long-distance trail and wilderness backpacking. I've done a lot of it over the years, and in an attempt to share my drug of choice with as many people as possible I've led several hundred city dwellers to places they would never otherwise have visited. Unfortunately, most of them retreated to their couches after the first trip, and at this point I would prefer to go alone and enjoy every minute rather than spending time policing off-limits cliff-edge antics and kitchen hygiene in bear country.

However, I'd still like to share (and remember) what I see out there, at least as long as there's an out there to see, and I'll need a more versatile and powerful camera than the old pocket point and shoot I've been using. Because I regularly walk 20 miles a day while ascending a total of 10,000 feet or more, a DSLR and an assortment of lenses is out of the question, so a super zoom is going to have to do. The following describes the photos I will be shooting:

1. 75% handheld macro or very long handheld or monopod-assisted still shots in daylight.
2. 20% handheld short to medium still shots in shadow or twilight.
3. 5% handheld or monopod-assisted moonlit shots.
4. Short to medium snap shots of the unexpected and hopefully infrequent encounter with wolf, sasquatch or bear.
5. Resolution and IQ sufficient for very good 8 or 9 x 10 or 11 inch prints (I've been asked to do a book).
6. Good performance and ergonomics would be much appreciated.

Everything I've read, including professional reviews, user reviews, and the occasional fan-boy review suggests that the FinePix hs20 or Sony hx100v are the top contenders. There may be others. I have good software for fairly sophisticated post processing and a lot of time to devote to becoming proficient with the camera.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Originally Posted by mtclimber View Post

What subjects you shoot are important, because a super zoom camera does not make a good sports camera. That venue is best handled by those very expensive DSLR cameras with the huge lens that you see at the Olympics and at major football games.

What kind of budget you have set aside is important as you will need some money for cards and a case, etc.

Why Auto or Manual? Because certain cameras are more adapted to, or have special features that make a manual operation much easier.

The Panasonic FZ100 is a good camera, but it is numerically ISO limited. The simple truth is that photo taken at ISO 400 (the maximum recommended ISO setting by most actual users) provides good image quality, but with visible noise, and only 5" X 7" prints at best and computer use is recommended by most users, if indeed image quality is a real priority.

The Fuji HS20 is a good, but surely not perfect camera. It does indeed have a long zoom reach of 30X optical zoom, but in my experience, the added small. and sometimes multiple manual settings need for EXR operation, are not adapted well to your 70% Automatic work flow HS10 photo quality is good, but notice the "added element" in my settings description in the attached photo below.

The Nikon P500, at least looking at the paper specification list looks to be impressive. However, the camera has not even reached the dealer's shelves yet and we have only seen previews, no professional reviews, or user reviews of the P500. And not a single photo has been posted. So we are waiting. The best review that I have seen on the P500 has been from Imaging Resource at this link:


The Sony HX100 falls into the very same category as the Nikon P500. It is not on dealer's shelves, no professional reviews, no user reviews, and only previews. Here is a link to the one provided by Steve:


Now the final camera that you seem to list in the title of your original post is: "550d." Canon does have a DSLR model called the "550d." Were you referring to the Canon 550D, a DSLR camera? I don't think that you are, as you have specifically said in you #2 post that: "...but i really don't want to have dslr if then i would have to change objectibe or to have big photo bag."

Super zoom cameras have always been a special interest to me. So, over the years, I have owned many of them. I realize that shooting styles can be very different. However, I have never had the need for a 4fps shot or higher. The Sony HX1 camera can shoot 10 fps, and I own one, but I have never used it for anything other than a hand held sweep panorama. The Sony HX1, the forerunner of the yet to be released, Sony HX100, has a Sony G class lens, which is Sony's highest lens rating, and is no slouchb bat all as the next attached photo demonstrates quite well. The HX1 is still available used and is selling for around $(US)300.00.

I have also be a longtime user of Panasonic's FZ series super zoom cameras. In terms of Panasonic, I began with the FZ1. In December 2010, I was in the market for a new FZ model. My possible choices were the FZ35, the FZ40, and the FZ100. Like you, after much research, I selected the FZ40 model, not the FZ100 model. I felt that the FZ100 model was not going to provide me with the image quality that I desired as the next attached photo show rather well. This is a photo of our family doctor, taken in his office during a regular appointment, without flash. In fact the ISO setting was ISO 3200, an ISO setting that, had the photo been taken with the FZ100 would have shown a whole lot of visible noise and reduced image quality.

Some super zoom cameras, such as the Panasonic FZ28, are much better specified to handle low light shooting where no flash can be used. That is why I asked about what ISO setting do you normally use. The attached photo above made with the FZ40, and this attached photo below, both required a numerically higher ISO setting to capture the photo.

Some cameras, like the Canon S3 and S5 are famous for their image quality, but have some really restrictive numerical ISO settings. Take for example, the S3 model had the highest level of image quality at settings of ISO 200 and below. Here is a good example of what the S3 could do when the ISO setting was held down to ISO 200 and less.

So, Boula, I think that you can better appreciate why the subject matter you are consistently taking does come into play when making a camera choice.

Some older cameras are notable as well. The Sony H9 had 15X optical zoom, but great image quality. Now 15X zoom is below your "16X or better" specification. Is that 16X or better specification "a line drawn in the sand?" The attachment below is a simple informal portrait of my husband taken in Automatic, using just the H9's built in flash unit. I am posting this photo to show you that certain cameras do very well indeed in the Automatic Mode.

And if you want brilliant color both the Panasonic FZ35 and the Sony H9 do very well indeed. The next attachment is from the FZ35 now selling at a record low price of $(US)214.00

The next attached photo is from the Sony H9 again:

So what is going to be your strategy? Are you going to wait for those super zoom cameras that have not yet reached the market yet, and on which we have no professional reviews, or user reviews? Or, do you wish to see the selection process speeded up, and make a selection of what is currently available?

Have a great day!

Sarah Joyce
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