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Old Jul 7, 2009, 9:49 AM   #1
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Default Serious zoom Lens Question. Camcorder Vs Camera

I have a SX10 which is 28(W) - 560(T) m. I travel quite often and like to take pictures of far-away objects such as dimly-lighted streets across my hotel room (just an example). I found that when I zoom the camera to the max, there is hardly any degrading of image quality. However, one limitation is that the zoom lens of 560mm is not quite enough for me especially when I am taking pictures of far away scenery. My question is whether should I buy a Panasonic 70x optical camcorder (SDR S26) to enable me to take this kind of picture? I am quite surprised that camera zoom can only reach up to 26X while camcorder zoom can go up to 70X (seriously, looking at the size of the camcorder aperture, I doubt it can produce "viewable" image).

My second question is that binocular has a brightness measure. A 10X25 binocular is much worse off than a 10X70 binocular in terms of brightness. Can anyone enlighten me is there a measure of brightness for camera when zooming? Thanks.
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Old Jul 7, 2009, 10:21 AM   #2
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You are right about the quality of the video cam. I has a very small CCD which is what allows the huge zoom range and it records stills at 640 x 480, you are better off with the SX10 and then just cropping down, you could also use the 80x digital zoom but to me this is a waste as you might as well work with a larger photo and crop if needed.

As for the brightness of a camera this is measured in stops and it is represented by the aperture. Every time you change by a stop you either double or halve the amount of light depending on which way you go.

Here are the 1 stop increments.

f1, f1.4, f2, f2.8, f4, f5.6, f8, f11, f16......................

The widest aperture at full zoom on the SX10 is f5.7 and the widest is f2.8 so you have less than 1/4 the light getting into the camera when fully zoomed than when you are shooting wide.
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Old Jul 7, 2009, 11:42 AM   #3
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Thanks Mark for your enlightening ans. Can I ask will it help if I buy a telephoto lens for my Canon camera? Actually I do not see any telephoto lens sold as its accessories but I have read somewhere Canon produce telephoto lens for P&S camera also.
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Old Jul 7, 2009, 4:00 PM   #4
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I'm sure that you could get an adaptor as it as a 52mm thread but I've not looked into this, however if you say went for a 2x converter you would lose two stops of light making it hard to get a fast shutter speed. Are they any specific examples you have of where you can't get in close enough?

Another problem with a 2x converter is that you can lose quality quite a lot of quality.
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Old Jul 7, 2009, 8:39 PM   #5
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Mark, I'm sure you must be thinking of teleconverters for SLR cameras. Many of the TC lenses used as add-ons for P&S cameras have a larger objective lens opening and, if used with the cameras they were designed for, cause no light loss. Usually, though they are limited to around 1.5x to 1.7x, such as those designed for the Minolta and Olympus models. There are still quite a few available, and used equipment sellers such as KEH have them available for quite reasonable prices.

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Old Jul 7, 2009, 9:26 PM   #6
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For example in a concert which accommodates 50,000 people in an indoor stadium where I am sitting at the back row. Actually I realized that Olympus SP-590UZ is currently the leader with 26-676mm lens and with a 1.7 telephoto, I guess the camera can go up to 1100mm
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Old Jul 8, 2009, 1:55 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VTphotog View Post
Mark, I'm sure you must be thinking of teleconverters for SLR cameras. Many of the TC lenses used as add-ons for P&S cameras have a larger objective lens opening and, if used with the cameras they were designed for, cause no light loss. Usually, though they are limited to around 1.5x to 1.7x, such as those designed for the Minolta and Olympus models. There are still quite a few available, and used equipment sellers such as KEH have them available for quite reasonable prices.

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You are right, I really wasn't thinking correctly.
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