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Old Sep 30, 2003, 7:01 AM   #1
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Default Fuji S5000... king of the 10x category?

Hellos,

I didn't want to start a thread about this, but after seeing the reviews about Kodak DX6490, posts about Minolta DiMAGE Z1 on the Minolta forum and discussions about the C-750 on Dpreview, the conclusion is ... clear?

The s5000 is the best all-round 10x amateur camera for $400 ?

And with the prices going down, currently less than $350 at reputable dealers, I think we definately have a winner here.

Please do not post things like "X sucks, Y rules". I just want to hear honest opinions about this. I'm not a longtime Fuji fan, I come from a Canon background, but I think that Fuji really deserves the crown this time....$350 for an excellent camera, with just a few minor inconsistences.

Cheers,
veedee.
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Old Oct 1, 2003, 3:08 AM   #2
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Some people have asked me how did I come to this conclusion.

Firstly, let's see the competition:
- Olympus C-750
- Minolta DiMAGE Z1
- Kodak DX6490

anything else?

After reading as much information as humanly possible about the competition, I came to the following conclusion: every manufacturer intentionally (more or less) leaved out some features on their cameras.

According to Jeff Keller's review, the DX6490 has un-threaded lenses and problems with image quality (as s5000 has with high compression and noise some would say). Also it has an AWFUL shot-to-shot speed (2.5 seconds delay between photos), no manual focus (really bad when using aditional close-up lenses or reverse-macro objectives), no TIFF/RAW mode. It also has problems with red-eye reduction (I used to hate Canon for their POOR red-eye reduction system), purple fringing, too saturated colors, underexposure, grass and shrubs get "muddied up", softness, and so on.

The C-750 does not have an AF assist lamp, thus a lot of problems for low-light situations, slow auto-focus system, some red-eye problems, 15fps movie-mode (sucks), poor burst mode (1.3fps comparing to 5fps on the s5000), ISO 50-400 (which translates to good at ISO 50, bad at ISO 200, totally unuseable at ISO 400), big price, and so on.

The Minolta DiMAGE Z1 according to the users on the Minolta forum has also some problems with: - when using video record mode , the camera makes clicking and whirling noises, problems with auto-focus in a room with normal lighting, and some problems with picture quality too (too early to tell as we haven't seen any reviews yet). Ah, also ISO 50-400 (read above).

I'm not saying that these cameras are bad. But, one has to count for certain features/quality at a certain price.

And right now, from what I know the price of the s5000 is the lowest?

I'd like some honest opinions on this. Thanks.
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Old Oct 3, 2003, 2:19 PM   #3
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Default Doubt

I still don't understand, why anyone would need a 380mm tourist-class camera? Especially without image stabilization?
1) It's not a PRO nor a semi-PRO camera - why would anyone using tripode buy S5000? To spy a neighbours?
2) Well, OK with 10x - but why not 30-300mm? 30mm much more frequently for indoor shooting, than 380 mm to capture a nude girl on the yaht (you willn't see anyshit 'course of overcompression)

I really would want to hear a reasonable explanation of possible use of 380mm for a consumer.
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Old Oct 3, 2003, 3:35 PM   #4
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From what I understand, the s5000 is an "AMATEUR" level camera, not prosumer or consumer. Below s5000 is just point and shoot.
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Old Oct 3, 2003, 3:55 PM   #5
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Klyak, you seem to have some sort of fixation with spying on other people!


Such a long focal length is really one of those things that most people don't see the point in until they've owned a camera with the capability. Ask those who have a camera capable of 380mm and most will tell you that they couldn't go back to a smaller zoom after experiencing the versatility they now have.

Regarding your comment about image stabilization, there is a common miscomception that anything over about 6 zoom is usless without it; this is simply not true though. I can get vary satisfactory results at 10 in normal to early-evening daylight, as can most other people that have a fairly steady hand. On moving subjects and in low light, obviously IS is a huge advantage but there are techniques to get by without it.

As for the uses of 380mm, well there are countless times where it comes in useful. I am far from being an experienced/well practiced photographer, but here are a few examples of when I have used my camera in the 350-380mm range:As you can see, I just couldn't have got these photos with a 3 or even a 6 camera. Like you say, it would be good if they offered a slightly wider angle than 38mm, but they don't , so we just have to live with that by buying add-on lenses if we really need to.

You also talk about these cameras being "tourist-class", but I have to disagree with you there I'm afraid. I don't know if tourist-class is a specific term for a camera but I'd consider such a thing to be your very basic point-n-click type that gives 3 zoom if any and allows no manual control over photographs. While I am under no disillusions that the long zoom cameras from Fuji, Oly, Minolta etc are (semi)Pro units, they certainly offer much more creative control than a fully automatic model. Most will allow you make all the manual tweaking you could want to do, though obviously not to the extent of pro cameras, and they'll never match them for quality. For what you're paying for though (compared to many other cameras in the same price band) long zoom cameras are good value for money in my opinion - at least the ones with full maual control anyway.
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Old Oct 3, 2003, 7:38 PM   #6
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Quote:
few examples of when I have used my camera in the 350-380mm range:
Squirrel
Wood mouse
Sheep drinking at lake
Wild horses
Tall ship's ropes
Are you sure you don't need better camera for this? If this is your work - I will be pretty sure it is. If it's your hobby and you can't afford nothing better - it could be an option. Anyway - I think you're only on this forum doing such things.
Quote:
results at 10 in normal to early-evening daylight
I did it 1st day trying the camera - objects in the corners I alweys got diffuse (I got the same at 7x, but even software IS can handle it).
Quote:
t would be good if they offered a slightly wider angle than 38mm, but they don't ,
I had Minolta DiMAGE 5. 28-200 mm. I never needed more versatility.
Walking Buenos Aires and making pics I never needed more, than 250 mm, the same for shows and sport (well, I have to admit I never needed faces of players - just an action).
I'm pretty sure - there are things, some might need 380 mm, but those are RARE things, usually needed a high quality too - and it's completely another price category.
Quote:
You also talk about these cameras being "tourist-class"
I meant - camera you using daily, for memorizing what you've seen - not a special purpose becourse of luck of image quality.
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Old Oct 4, 2003, 7:55 AM   #7
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Well, everytime when I was in the zoo, bird park etc., there're times I felt I just wanted to reach out a bit more when I was already at max zoom (380mm or 420mm with FZ1).

And when taking babies/kids photos at home too, I'd like to step back to an optimum distance and zoom in to get a close up - to avoid hurting their eyes by frequent uses of flash.

After owning C2100UZ, FZ1 and now S5000, I'd NEVER go back to a 3x. I find that sometimes it's just useless once stepping out of the door. Unless it has a huge resolution to afford cropping.
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Old Oct 4, 2003, 8:29 AM   #8
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Default Re: Doubt

Quote:
Originally Posted by Klyak
I still don't understand, why anyone would need a 380mm tourist-class camera? Especially without image stabilization?
At day time outdoor, normal people won't need IS at 380mm.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Klyak
...you willn't see anyshit 'course of overcompression
Again, 'overcompression'. What make you people think S5000 is over-compress the pictures? I personally think that it's just lack of a choice of Fine mode.

I just don't understand. Well maybe most people out there are always using SHQ or Fine mode with their digicams for the peace of mind. For S5000's 3MP at 800+KB, it's definitely not over-compressed than C2100UZ's 2MP at 450KB (HQ) or FZ1's 2MP at 350KB (Normal). From my past experience, an amateur won't see the difference between SHQ and HQ, or Fine and Normal mode under normal use.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Klyak
I really would want to hear a reasonable explanation of possible use of 380mm for a consumer.
Well, some people can live with a 20GB HD (me) but some may yearn for a 120GB. Some would be happy with a PIII 733MHz (me), while others cry for a P4 3.2GHz. It just depends on the user.
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