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Old Feb 19, 2003, 2:55 PM   #1
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Default Advice On Fuji S304 And Olympus 730UZ


Can anyone help me?

I'm thinking of buying a digital camera, and have narrowed it down to two choices.

There are the Olympus 730UZ and the Fuji S304 (3800 in USA)
I've read reviews about both camera's and they both have their good and bad points.

For example:

The 730UZ has a Diopter Adjustment Dial next to the viewfinder to help bring the image into focus
for people who wear glasses (which I do!), where as the S304 doesn't.
Would the viewfinder LCD image be clear for a glasses wearer on the S304?

The S304 has a nice looking rubber eyepiece on the back of the viewfinder (which I like).

The reviews say that the S304 has a LCD resolution of 62,000 pixels where as the 730UZ has 114,000 pixels. Would this cause the S304 image to be fuzzy?

Does anyone have any problems with seeing the LCD's in light or dark conditions?

On the whole I prefer the Fuji S304 because I like the design of the camera and the layout of the buttons.

When I do buy a camera, I know I've got to also buy a good set of rechargeable batteries and a battery charger.
Can anyone recommend any?
Talking of batteries, How long do batteries last on the above camera's?

Thanks. :?
paulm10 is offline   Reply With Quote
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Old Feb 19, 2003, 10:43 PM   #2
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I had my search narrowed down to the same two cameras. I took the Fuji. It's insanely cheap and i am an amateur who likes to fiddle and the extra features of the C-730 may have been wasted on me at this stage.

The oly lens is NOT STABALISED so past 230mm (the fuji size) is essentially useless anyway. The fuji is easier to use and looks better too.

In saying that, the Oly has better burst mode, the great "my mode" settings, and is a MUCH MUCH easier shape to carry around, easily the weakest point opf the fuji .. it's a bitch of a shape to say the least.

Last week I was considerign sellign the Fuji and buying the oly ... then i checked www.dpreview and noticed ALL THE BITCHING about the poor picture quality on the Oly ...... a REAL SURPRISE (given their reputation) but everyone dislikes the quality.

The Fuji has most positive reviews re. pic quality and it is true.

If the Fuji wa seasier to carry around (that boxy shape is a disaster) then it would win easily ..... it's a close call but i think i made the right choice.
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Old Feb 20, 2003, 5:37 AM   #3
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Alfisti, have you personally tried using a camera with a long zoom and no IS? I have never used a camera with IS, and I am not arguing about its advantages, but I think this trend of saying that itís necessary needs to stop. You can easily live without it and take some really good photos as well, itís just down to technique. (See ĒWho needs ISĒ)

Also, I have learned to take what people say on dpReview with a pinch of salt. It seems that a few people on there say something and then everyone else just echoes that believing it to be gospel, and Iíd wager that half of them have never even tried the camera in question. It is true that C-730 (and yes, I do own one) can have trouble focusing in low/artificial light but so do many cameras in itís price range that donít have a AF beam of some sort. I have found this problem to be no where near the scale indicated on the internet though, and you always have quick access to manual focusing if you really need it.

As for noise in pictures: it is present in pictures taken under incandescent light, but in my experience it doesnít jump out you like you might be lead to believe, you really have to look for it. I think this is just a case of people jumping on the bandwagon again! It became fashionable for a while to post pictures from the C-730 saying ďOMG, look at the noise on thisĒ. Something you could do with select pictures from almost any camera in its price range I think.

I have come to the conclusion that because of such an impressive feature set, consumers were buying this camera expecting it to behave just like other cameras that match it in this respect (e.g. Fuji 620, Nikon 5700 and Minolta d7 series). Just look the price of the Oly though and itís obvious to me that this was never going to happen - otherwise they would be charging at least another £100 for it.

I really love my C-730. I am just a keen amateur that wanted to move up from automatic models and have more control without spending a lot of money. The C-730 has fitted my requirements perfectly. Iím not under any illusions that the camera doesnít have its small flaws, but the picture quality is absolutely fine for me and I just love that long zoom.

I havenít ever used (or even seen in real life) the Fuji so canít really say a lot about it. It has a decent zoom (although I prefer the option of my C-730ís huge zoom) but doesnít appear to have a variable ISO. My main concern with it though (from my point of view) is that it has no ability to use an external shutter control (either release cable or remote control) which I find I use a lot on my camera for low light tripod shots.

Well Iím going to stop writing now, Iíve already typed for twice as long as I should have done - I'm supposed to be working at the moment! Hope all that read OK, I haven't got time to go and proof read it properly.


P.S. - Have a look at http://www.askdirect.co.uk when you are ready to buy. Itís where I got my camera from and from my research they are pretty much the lowest prices in the UK and also were a great service.
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Old Feb 20, 2003, 5:20 PM   #4
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Well I got the impression the biiiiig zoom needs a stabaliser from Steve's review. As for Dpreview, well you may be right but once a camera gets past 50 reviews there must be some truth, i tend to believe formal reviews though rather than just user reviews.

The Oly's 12 shot burst mode, stitching, variable ISO and "mymode" are what i like ..... i don't need anymore manual settings because I am still learning.

All honesty, my biggest gripe is the shape of the fuji .. a right bitch at times.
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Old Feb 20, 2003, 5:33 PM   #5
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Alfisti, just want to apologise because I just reread my post from earlier and the first paragraph sounds a bit like a personal attack directed towards you. ops:

It wasn't meant to sound like this, I guess I was just a bit grumpy because I had only just crawled out of bed and had a long day of univeristy assignments and lectures ahead of me.

Sorry again - Ed
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