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Old May 28, 2005, 12:51 AM   #231
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Mpeg4 format is the closest quality match to DVDs on TV at the moment, if you want to squeeze an hour of 640x480 30fps video onto a 1gig sd card. Motion Jpeg & others give 8-10 mins of same quality video onto the same 1gig.

pls, correct me if i am wrong ...
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Old May 28, 2005, 4:49 AM   #232
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MPEG-4 is technically superior in size AND quality, but current devices haven't perfectly implemented MPEG-4 yet (it demands faster chips), so practically it generally looks worse than MPEG-2 (at the same resolution, e.g. 640x480@30).

For the time being, you must decide between size (MPEG-4) or quality (MPEG-2).

Yes, 640x480@30 is similar to DVD quality. (While the quality that DV camcorders deliver is inferior - it's actually not 720x480@30, but 720x240@60, which is smoother in movement, but has a worse still picture quality)
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Old May 31, 2005, 8:27 AM   #233
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bjohn wrote:

I was not recommending the camera for you; I recognized the purpose of your post. I was merely adding another happy experience as well as further information to those surfing this thread.

In answer to your questions, I have an iMac G5 computer and am very happy with the iPhoto, iMovie and iDVD software that came bundled with it. That is what I use to edit and work with my photos and videos. I use the Sandisk Ultra.

Your fellow 'Z' owner,


Thanks for the tips John. I use the same brand and type of SD cards. Concerning the software, I don't use Mac OS (unpopular in Portugal). The problem that I found is when converting the videos to VCD there's a little jumpiness when I make movements with the camera. I've tried different softwares and the best yet is Ulead VS 8. However the jumpiness still there.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"For those that are wondering if the jumpiness is noticeable watching minolta's "Z" series movies in the computer, just relax, the quality is 4.5* and the sound is 3.5* (on a 5* scale). I'm only referreing to the low choice of 320x240 30fps. When it comes to 640x480 30 fps then it is 5*.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"If anyone has any doubt concerningZ3 model I'm more than glad to help in the best way I can.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Manuel
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Old May 31, 2005, 8:39 AM   #234
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sfpeter wrote:

I was wondering if anyone can make recommendations for a camera, specifically I'm looking for a camera that can take 640X480 movies at 30FPS as a stand-in for a camcorder. Here's the things I'm looking for:

unlimited length of movie clips
SD card or preferably microdrive support
Decent sound
Mpeg movie format, AVI as a secondary consideration
Optical zoom that can operate when taking movies
Cost is an issue, so older or cheaper models would be preferrred.

All other considerations (still resolution, lens, features, etc.) wouldn't matter as I've already got a decent still camera. I'm looking right now at a Powershot S1 even though it does AVI movies. Any ideas would be appreciated.


I make john's words as mine. In fact the minolta's "Z"series it is something that you should consider if cost is an issue. Canon specs are better but when it comes to movies you have to think if that is exactly what you really want. Excellent quality but not for too long. When I was considering buying a camera I looked at S1 but I found that Minolta balances quality vs. compression in a better way.

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Old Jun 1, 2005, 5:01 PM   #235
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Ther seems to be little mention of the Casio EX-Z750 here lately, this camera is massive in MPEG4 movie mode and is a very(read very) capable and swift(important) camera, do not forget to look at this camera - no its not the cheapest but look at the specifications.
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Old Jun 6, 2005, 11:16 AM   #236
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Another contender : Samsung L55W

Looks like from the press release on June 2nd 2005 that this camera will be a step up in the video category. It has a 4.8X optical zoom which you can use while recording. The camera has a 2.8" LCD and uses MPEG4. The PR says you can pause and resume recording and take stills during playpack. It also has movie stabilization. This one will be interesting to watch. It sounds a little like Kodak's V550 set to launch this month (already available at some stores) but perhaps a step better in the video department. Time will tell.

No word on target launch date from the press release or price other than "later this year".

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Old Jun 6, 2005, 2:25 PM   #237
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The two ultra compact cameras with MPEG4 to look at today are:

Casio Z750
Kodak V550
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Old Jun 6, 2005, 8:06 PM   #238
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Agreed, the V550 looks very interesting, but the L55W looks like it will be a step up. No way to know for sure right now, and the V550 is reasonably priced and ready now. Still, the L55W looks to me like the one I've been waiting years for ( as I am disappointed at the Powershot S1 successor, the S2).
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Old Jun 8, 2005, 11:07 PM   #239
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Any more suggestions for my added preferences to 640x480 movies?

a. MPEG-4 or better compression/quality movie at 640x480, and OPTICAL ZOOM during movie capture.

b. Weight under 200g (incl battery/card)

c. Reasonable quality lens

d. Reasonable shutter lag (< 0.2s), and preferably around 1 shot/s continuously

e. Preferably some manual shutter/aperture controls.

f. Acceptable noise level at iso200

g. Orthogonal design (not too much thickened on the RHS grip). Yes, I know I am trading off firm-grip for ease to carry.

Kodak v550 meets nearly all but not sure d,e & f, and there are not reviews about it at this moment. While Casio EXZ-750 fails (a) - no optical zoom during movie.

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Old Jul 3, 2005, 2:38 PM   #240
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Any sample videos from the Optio MX/MX4 available?

Let me explain a little bit first, I have a Minolta A200, which is an excellent camera for most anything I need to do, and has a fantastic movie mode. However, I have a need for something cheap(er) to take videos and pictures where the A200 might get damaged.

Lately I've been using a DXG 301V that does 3.2MP stills and fair quality 320X240 video for when I go canoeing or when it might rain. It works, but I'd like to get a 640X480 30FPS camera if possible. Basically I just need something for snapshots and home video when I don't want to risk the ruining the good camera, unless someone makes an affordable underwater housing for the A200.

I've also noticed the MX is supposed to take video in MP4 format, while the specs for the MX4 lists Quicktime. Is that right or a misprint?

Thanks for your help,

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