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Old Dec 19, 2004, 2:36 PM   #1
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i love the construction of s1 IS. video mode is important for me. However, taking pictures in low light like sunset pictures or night shots without using flash are as important as the video mode. i hate noisy images which made me think about panasonic FZ3. But according to dpreview, all cameras are noisy above ISO 100or 200. so i need to know, should i change my mind? s1 owners please help me, tell me about the dark side of s1, if it really has. thank you..
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Old Dec 19, 2004, 3:05 PM   #2
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Someone with experience with chime in soon, but I just purchased the S1 and I really like it. I have just finished reading the manual a couple of days ago, but so far it has surprised me. It does take a few extra seconds to focus in low light, but the image quality is still good. Good luck on your decision. I know it is a tough one.
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Old Dec 20, 2004, 2:20 PM   #3
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I've used digital cameras in many years (of course before I've used SLR) and the problem is the same with almost cameras in low light or night-shooting.

Night shots are easier. Set 100 ISO, the aperture to 4.5 (to avoid ev. purple fringe). Manual focus at some shorter distance an subject (check the DOF at: http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html) and try different shutter speed.

Low light pictures are more difficult, but about the same procedure.

Remember: no camera can work in low light situation. AF-assist lamp works only for short distances. It's useless i.e. with tele...

TRY, TEST, TRY, TEST.....

Good luck!!!!


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Old Dec 20, 2004, 7:02 PM   #4
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S1 IS is not a very good camera for low-light (eg. indoors, night, etc). I would stay away from this camera if that is your primary use.

I think the S1 IS produces more noise than the Panasonic FZ3 but it isn't THAT significant. All these cameras (as well as nearly all consumer and low to mid-end prosumers) have high noise starting around ISO 200.

One flaw of the S1 IS is the lack of an AF-assist lamp. This makes it worse than other competitors for short-range night shots. (AF assist lamp only has a range of a few meters so this doesn't apply to long distance night pics).

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Old Dec 21, 2004, 10:17 AM   #5
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The quality of a picture in low-lighting conditions has nothing to do with AF-assist lamp. This will help only to focusing right (and for a short distance. You can't use it with tele!)A Sony with laser-beam will be usefull in total darkness but the result is depending from the lenses and the quality of sensor.

To use S1 with ISO under 200 will give enough good quality. Some noise can be repaired with i.e. Noise Ninja or Neat Image.
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 10:13 PM   #6
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I have S1 & FZ20. My S1 is better in low light than the Panasonic. I can use !SO 200 on shots with the Canon that I have to use 400 with the Panasonic. Framing the picture in low light is certainly no worse with the Canon especially in the program mode instead of the automatic than it is with the Panasonic & maybe even better. The one flaw with the Canon besides only being 3mp is the manual mode. To set the exposure setting in manual mode with the Canon you have to half press the shutter button which makes the exposure reading appear in upper left corner of screen. Then to adjust the reading you have to release the shutter button which makes the number disappear. You then guess how many times to press the arrow to adjust. Half press shutter to get reading. Release & adjust. Half press to get reading & release to adjust. Finally you have correct exposure. Now you manually focus. It seems that distance range for focus isn't very accurate & the adjustment is hard to control, so again it is a back & forth process. If you simply want a point & shoot with some neat features then the S1 is a great camera. If you'll use the manual mode a lot, save yourself the aggravation & get a FZ. When setting the exposure on a FZ you have a meter that lets you know where you are at all times & then a focus ring on the lens that is easy to use. They both take great pictures & horrible ones.
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Old Dec 22, 2004, 10:17 PM   #7
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Forgot to mention video mode, which I haven't even tried on Panasonic & barely on S1. However, on S1 zoom is really noisy when operating, so believe vocal overdub would be necessary if you use it in video. Then get less than 3 minutes of video per 256 mb of memory when using the fine setting. Picture quality good.
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Old Dec 24, 2004, 2:01 AM   #8
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Regarding the problem of S1 focusing in low light, I've found a solution for myself. If you don't have time to set manual focus, try this. Set you mode to TV, set flash range (preferrably more) as desired and start clicking. It gave me great results and focused well Let me know how others find...
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Old Dec 25, 2004, 1:47 AM   #9
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could you please send some night shots? aeapen? or anyone can send ??
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