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Old Feb 11, 2006, 11:47 PM   #1
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Hello. I'm looking into buying a camera and I need some information I couldn't seem to find through my own research. Do both of these models record movie with sound in MPEG-4 format and is the length of the movie limited only by size of SD card? Also, do these cameras have any panorama shot features? Thanks.
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Old Feb 12, 2006, 5:09 AM   #2
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Yes to the video mpeg4 aboutI have 512mb card in my s600 15 mins hq, 30 mins normal quality, 1hr 22 mins on LP, z750 will be virtually the same,not sure about panie,depends what you want to do, mys600 doesnt appear to have any, thoughhave just only got it so working my way through it, though you can have a user definedbest shot setupI am sure you could set something up using this, thez750 has more manual features and setupswould image that would have something. Will have a look further on the s600 for you any post if find anything.

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Old Feb 18, 2006, 9:54 PM   #3
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The MPEG4 movie mode on the Z750 is great and I assume the S600 is the same. The Z120 doesn't have MPEG4 however. So it not only uses more space but can't buffer the great past movie mode the Z750 and S600 have.

I take a lot of panoramas with my Z750 although it doesn't have a panorama mode. I have no idea how I could set up a custom mode to do it.

The standard way to do it with the Z750 would be to set a fixed white balance and manual exposure so you don't get stitch lines. Manual mode in the Z750 has no metering and it is a hassle to get it set quickly. You have no manual modes on the S600.

I was having a similar problem with my old Pentax S4. Pentax has no clue of how to design a panorama mode and the exposure and WB vary with each panorama shot. Someone on another board suggested I just shoot in continuous mode. That is the mode where you just hold the shutter and the camera keeps snapping pictures. All of the parameters are set with the first shot. So I pre-meter by half pressing the shutter aimed at what I consider the average exposure. The Pentax was always in continuous if you just held the shutter, but you have to set it with the Z750 – easy enough to do as the controls are great.

The first two shots come pretty quickly. But the buffer fills with one best quality 7Mp shot and the rest are over a second apart. I find that perfect for panoramas. Hold the camera with the long side vertical and you get more resolution. I would guess you can do the same with the S600.

I often take 3 quick shots with the camera vertical to get a standard format wide angle shot. Besides getting a 4:3 shot at around 27mm, the resolution is over 10Mp. They make great large prints. With a shot taken with all of the shooting parameters the same you can stitch with simple software that stitches quickly. There is no variation where you stitch and it looks like a single photo.

I find it easier to just use continuous and concentrate on holding the camera level and getting the right overlap. You need a lot of overlap only for sophisticated software that tries to balance out panoramas taken with different metering and WB. With a little practice you can grab a panorama almost as fast as a single shot. I doubt I would use a panorama mode even if the camera had one.

I put this online during another discussion. I just walked out of my computer room, put the camera in continuous with the camera vertical and held down the shutter for about 5 shots. It stitched in 5 seconds or less because the stitching software didn't have to make any adjustments. It was taken at the widest lens setting and no adjustments were made to the individual images or final panorama. Many people get light dropoff in the edges at wide and have to zoom some or do some work on the panorama in an editor with other cameras. The panorama gives you an idea how good the Z750 lens is at wide.

Edit: I lied – I did straighten the right horizon a little because someone complained about it. But there weren't any other adjustments. It wasn't meant to be a work of art as I just grabbed it for a demo of the continuous mode and lack of stitch lines. Someone wanted to critique it anyway, so I straightened the horizon a little.
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