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Old Sep 5, 2007, 2:45 AM   #1
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I am thinking of buying a digicam and wanted to know which will be the best camera for me.

I would like to have a high zoom camera which is capable of taking good pictures as well as record movies in MPEG4 format

I have searched a lot on the internet and found that Kodak Z612 and Kodak Z712 IS meet some of my requirements. Both have 12X optical zoom and record movies in MPEG4 format

Steve's reviewed the Z612 and from thereI noticed that while recording a movie if you zoom, then the focus is lost momentarily, but once the zoom has stopped the focus is restored. So I wanted to know does this also happen in Z712 IS as well?

Other high zoom cameras like Canon S3 IS does not have this problem I guess. So i would really be grateful if anyone out there can guide me onselecting the bestcamera for me. This is going to be my first purchase andI do not know much about photography.

I would appreciate if anyone cangive me some samples of the movies taken in Z712 IS and Z612.


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Old Sep 11, 2007, 11:24 AM   #2
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The Z712 and Z812 have the same lens/lens mechanism as the Z612 so will behave the same during video zoom.

Background: Zoom lenses historically have compensated for focus loss during zoom by mechanically coupling focus compensating lens elements to the zoom mechanism. These element generally had a different movement rate and motion pattern than the elements which changed focal length. Works fairly well although many recommended that the lens be refocused at the actually used focal length for critical applications. This mechanical compensation addscomplexity and cost to the lens.

Schneider/Kodak realized thatfor still pictures in ancamera with a fast, accurate auto-focus system this mechanical compensation was redundant, just zoom the lens and let the auto-focus do its thing. This is one of the factors that allows Kodak to produce an ISsuper-zoom at a price point at a $100 or more less than than the rest of the market.

What to do if your shooting videos? Do like the pros. Watch TV or movies and you never see an optical zoom. You'll see dolly shots where the camera physically moved with the subject or the scene may be shot at different focal lengths and the different views cut/merged totogether (with software nowadays.) This requires planning and forethought but then that marks a professional production. The amateur's issue with this methodology is not so much stitching the video segments together but managing the sound track. Obviously if dialog is present then the changes in focal length need to be done during pauses in the dialog.
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