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Old Dec 2, 2010, 8:43 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by peterbj7 View Post
I often see statements like this. Many Nikon devotees used to say that 12mp was the limit for quality pictures, so obviously Canon were at fault for breaking that physical limit. I haven't seen any of them making such rash statements since the D7000 came out.
Nothing was physically stopping anyone from upping the MP. It was merely a decision call. On the other hand, squeezing a larger sensor and a telescoping lens into a pocketable camera has its physical limitations.

Originally Posted by roaddawg31 View Post
You don't think that, if we are having this discussion in 2012 (supposing the world doesn't end that year of course ), that there won't be a profound feature introduced into the compact P&S market?
I didn't say that. You asked about a longer zoom and bigger sensor. However, no I don't think there will be any phenomenal breakthroughs in the next couple years in these cameras. CMOS is the new thing in these cameras and still very much in its infancy. It took them a couple years just to get the backlit CMOS sensors from camcorders into pocket cams. Now they need to try to work with this technology to get the most out of it.

The aim within the industry right now is "all-in-one." These pocket cams are focusing more on video and using tricks like stacking to improve low light output quality. They are putting better lenses and better image sensors in phones now. Heck, Panasonic already has a Lumix line of phones in the works.

Another feature that I think you will see making its way into more cameras soon is 3D of some kind. Panasonic is a giant in the industry and 3D is their baby. Just like they did with AVCHD, I think they will push 3D. Whether it will catch on or it I don't know but considering how much time and money they have put into 3D, I think they'll do their darnedest to push it forward.

Originally Posted by roaddawg31
i.e. 2010 seemed to be the year of compact megazooms. 2011, 2012, we won't see a push toward:

*low-light slaying pocket cameras?
*superb high-speed video (e.g. slo-mo in 720p)?

I gotta think that 2011 and beyond will continue to bring significant advancements to the marketplace.

You have to understand the physical limitations though. All the wishing and research in the world cannot change the physical limitations of certain things. The modern automobile was created over 100 years ago and you still can't get 100mpg in a gasoline-powered car. Time, money and positive thinking still can't change scientific limitations. To achieve this goal, they had to turn their attention towards hybrids and electric cars.

Low light pics are a similar situation. In order to improve low light image quality, you need to gather more light. We do this via the sensor and the lens. Well the sensor and lens are already at or near extremely near their physical limits. If you make the sensor bigger, you need to make the lens bigger. Now the camera is bigger. So no, you physically will not be able to squeeze much more out of these cameras and still have them remain the same size. You will always be forced to choose between zoom and sensor size in this form factor.

Now in terms of speed, I certainly think cameras will be able to obtain higher bitrate video. However, you can only go so far with a CCD sensor in terms of speed and again, this will never change. CCD sensors are simply not fast enough. This is one of the reasons why manufacturers are heading towards CMOS.

So I am not saying that there won't be advances, I am simply saying that the zoom and sensor size are physically limited from advancing and remaining in the same pocketable form factor.

Originally Posted by roaddawg31
(BTW, I do know about the ZS7. I *personally* have a problem with Panasonic at present, and I also don't want/need GPS. The camera also decidedly lacks a "fun" factor, and I've also read reports of bad indoor quality.)
Well if you want to let one experience sway your judgment, that's certainly you're right. Panasonic is and has been #1 in build quality for a few years running. As for their service, well I think everyone's service sucks these days.

The ZS7 does have poor indoor quality but so do all of the long zoom cameras you are considering. Agreeably, the ZS7 is a little worse than CMOS-based cameras. You need the sensor and/or the brighter lens if you want to shoot anything aside from a still object in low light. There's no way around it. No camera in its class has a better lens though.

The ZS6 is the same camera sans the GPS btw. usually "fun factor" refers to ease of use and honestly the camera coudln't be any easier to sue. The auto mode is one of, if not the, best in class.

I am no Panasonic fanboy though. I am quite partial to the color output of Canon and Nikon.
Disclaimer: I take photos of life rather than live to take photos and my opinions of cameras are reflected accordingly.

Last edited by FiveO; Dec 2, 2010 at 11:51 PM.
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