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Old Aug 1, 2006, 6:43 AM   #1
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I am basically looking for recomendations on the following cameras;

Canon S3 IS

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ7

Fujifilm Finepix S5200

I am new to digital photography but am very keen to learn and want a camera which I can have full manualcontrol over and will take nice pictures, upto ahigh (ish)standard. Price is an issue and to me (not knowing much about camera's) the camera's all look reasonably similar (less megapixels in Fujifilm and no stabalisation). However, it has got great reviews and wondered wether it was worth while?

The price difference between the Panasonic and Canon (about £50) pushes me towards the Panasonic but I am just looking for any advice from you guru's out there! :-)

By the way, prices i have found are about £280 (S3) £220 (FZ7) and £170 for Fujifilm.


Oh, and by the way. The manual focus on these camera's is like an SLR with a focus ring on the lense right? someone told me its a joystick which sounds well, not great for manual focusing which is what I will do with the camera most...
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Old Aug 2, 2006, 12:20 AM   #2
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I work in a camera store so I have managed to get a hands on with all 3 cameras. First off, I own the Canon S3IS so I may be a little biased in my opinion here. The Canon S3IS is a great camera is all features except for the manual focus because that requires using the 4 way controller which is a bit tedious.

All the cameras you mentioned here do not have focus rings.

As for Panasonic FZ7, it is a great camera, very light, very versatiles and an excellent lens. Also in the kit is a filter adapter and lens hood (something canon makes you pay $40 for) which is a significant plus in value. And the lens cap is SIGNIFICANTLY better. The Canon's slide on lens cap will fall off easily over time while the Panasonic's is a snap on.

Both cameras have Optical Image Stabilization...something the Fuji lacks. Also both take SD cards...that would reduce your overall cost.

What I did notice though is that the zoom on the Canon is faster than the Panasonic. And the Panasonic joystick is a bit of a pain the use (but then again my 4 way controller is a bit faulty as with most initial shipments of S3IS) so its up to your preference cause the joystick you don't have to move your finger much (its easier for manual focusing)

Fuji sports a super CCD (which is great for sensitivity) and is cheaper but I would definately recommend Canon or Panasonic over the Fuji.

Value wise though...Panasonic is king.
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Old Aug 2, 2006, 5:08 AM   #3
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Thanks for the advice.

I agree that fuji not having OIS is a bit of a problem and for £50 more the panasonic is probably a better deal.

Shame though cos i really want a camera with manual focus ring. However, the one which looks best with that is the Panasonic DMC-FZ30 but it costs £340...

I am just slightly worried that becuase the FZ7 and S3 have joysticks and 4 way controller they are not really designed with manual focusing in mind. I really want to be using the manual focus and settings 90% of the time, and feel that it might not be done as i had hoped...

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Old Aug 2, 2006, 10:10 AM   #4
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Take a look at the Fuji S-9000. No IS but, I think it does have a focus ring.

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