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Old Dec 6, 2005, 4:44 AM   #1
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I read ALL the review, but I can't come to a final conclusion:

For the s9000 I like the 28 mm range, AA batteries and high ISO.

For the Panasonic I like the high zoom, picture stabilizer and smaller size.

Please give an advice!


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Old Dec 6, 2005, 10:03 PM   #2
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I was debating these same two cameras and last week ended up buying the Panasonic. The main reason is that the faster lens at full zoom (Panasonic f3.7, Fuji f4.9). The other reason had to do with the stories of initial build qualityproblemswith the Fuji - while it sounds like Fuji has been good about repairing/replacing the faulty units, I couldn't find either camera in my area, so I was going to have to order it. I didn't want to deal with the possibility of having to return whatever I bought. If the Fuji had been a clear winner, I would have ordered it, but it didn't seem a clear-cut winner. Looking at the photos posted on this site, both cameras can take great pictures.

I got the Panasonic Friday and I'm quite pleased. I LOVE the big zoom!
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Old Dec 6, 2005, 10:35 PM   #3
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I have been looking at both as well. I will buy the Panasonic FZ30 when it falls below $500. The anti shake is a big + for me. The Fuji raises your film speed to compensate for shake, this is not as good as true anti shake. I also like that the zoom increases to more than 12Xwhen you set your camera to 5MP or 3MP. I have to believe the manual focus feature to be a great help. It seems most reviews are very positive on the FZ30, some disliking the noise when printing over 8X10.

My current camera is a Fuji 609z which I have been very satisfied with, so it's not that I feel the Fuji a bad camera.


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Old Dec 6, 2005, 11:04 PM   #4
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You have high ISO settings on the S9000 but they aren't that useful. The 9Mp sensor seems a lot noisier than their great 6Mp sensor.

Stabilization is advertised to give about 3 f-stops advantage for handheld shots in limited light. That means you can take the same shot at ISO100 with the FZ30 that you need ISO 800 for in the S9000. ISO100 on the FZ30 is less noisy than ISO400 on the S9000. So you get better shots with the stabilization. The S9500 is the same camera as the S9000 sold outside the US.

But stabilization doesn't help at all for subject motion. The S9000 would be better for that, but only slightly looking at the ISO400 shots. The wide angle capability is nice to have.

I have a camera with AA batteries and don't intend having another unless there is a great camera with AAs I can't live without. Or I finally go to DSLR. It adds more weight than is needed as well as bulk. Electronics are good enough anymore that the lithium batteries will fill a pretty large card. And if you check with other users you can find aftermarket lithium spares that are pretty cheap and as competent as the originals. Just drop a charged spare lithium somewhere handy – it will hold its charge for months unlike NiMH.

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Old Dec 10, 2005, 9:14 PM   #5
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It came down to these 2 cameras for me as well. As far as I can tell, if you want to take action shots the s9000 has an advantage because it's images look cleaner at high ISOs than the Panasonic, and therefore higher shutter speeds become more practical.

In every other regard however, the Panasonic appears to be a superior camera.
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