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Old Jul 31, 2012, 4:46 PM   #1
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Default FZ150 Advice

After reading almost every review and forum page online trying to decide between the Lumix FZ150 and the Canon SX40, I've finally decided on purchasing the FZ150. Ive now had it a few days and taken a few test shots mostly under low light conditions in the evening and my inital reaction is that the photos are a bit underwhelming. I find them a bit hazy and slightly blurry and not as crisp and clear as I would have preffered. Am I expecting too much or do I need to play around more with the camera to find the ideal setttings? Does anyone have any advice on getting the most out of this camera which according to most of the reviews is the 'king of bridge cameras'? I want to love it but part of me is wondering what the Canon would have been like...!
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Old Jul 31, 2012, 5:53 PM   #2
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What mode are you shooting in ? Is your shutter speed too low ? Are you using a tripod- and what type of shots are you trying to capture..?
You also have "handheld night shot" option via the dial- which shoots a burst of several shots and combines them for a cleaner image.
I've owned both- and there's very little in the IQ overall... maybe the Canon edges the low light work (just...) and possibly the Panasonic at lower iso's (again, just...).

Here's some results at elevated iso settings.....
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...-high-iso.html
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Old Jul 31, 2012, 6:07 PM   #3
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Just as an example- here's a shot I just taken,outside of my window,mid-zoom,using the "handheld night shot" mode.
Both "as is" out of the camera- save a slight crop on the first and a bigger crop on the second to show the IQ.....
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Old Aug 1, 2012, 8:22 AM   #4
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Thanks for the response simon. On reflection I think this was a case of the workman blaming his tools and I believe I have made quite a few mistakes using the wrong settings. The shots I took were of a family event at home therefore the light wasnt good. The camera was set to iAuto mode which again probably doesnt give the best results. Finally I took some burst shots of kids blowing out candles on a birthday cake. All of these were blurred due to movement however this is obviously too slow a shutter speed and no flash in the burst mode that I used. I am very much a beginner with obviously a LOT to learn but I have a passion to do so and make the most of this wonderful tool that I've bought.
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Old Aug 1, 2012, 9:04 AM   #5
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iA mode works pretty well outdoors- and certainly if your subjects aren't moving.
However,with fast moving subjects,indoors,low light with some movement etc will require some careful manual manipulation via the mode dial etc... kind of a trial and error process...
But that's half the fun....
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Old Aug 2, 2012, 9:13 AM   #6
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Yes I'm beginning to realise that I have a lot to learn but over the past few days having posted on this and the dpreview forum and receiving some good advice and comments I'm beginning to get the hang of it. I was initially dissapointed but I've now played about a bit more, read up a lot on the settings and noticed a few things.
  • Firstly the PC monitor I'm viewing images on is crap which doesnt help so thats gotta go.
  • Secondly my first shots were indoor and low light situations which I see now required a flash and this is why they appeared hazy/blurry/noisy.
  • Thirdly when I did use a flash I possibly had the wrong setting selected which caused the photo to become overexposed and look too bright.
  • Fourth it's taking time to learn about the zoom and how close I can zoom on an object before it becomes unable to focus on it i.e. flowers (initially I thought I could zoom all the way into the centre and that the camera would easily focus on it). I need to play about more with this as well as the macro settings.
  • Fifth the camera is so sensitive and so fast it will focus on anything in an instant therefore when taking a photo I must ensure that what I want in focus is correct and that the camera hasnt focused on something in the background i.e. the wall or a tree etc.
  • Lastly the burst mode in zoom isnt as quick as I'd thought therefore movement still becomes blurry as the shutter speed isnt fast enough.
Hopefully what I've said makes sense but if anyone has any tips or further advice it would be greatly received. Obviously I still have a lot more to learn but the past week has been eye opening and I'm now enjoying the experience of playing and working out what the camera can do.

I've posted this same message on the dpreview website as a lot of people helped me there too and there's also some photos that I've taken which image quality wise I'm very happy with. They arent "good photos" in any way but simply test shots to show that I am learning...slowly!

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=42171926
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Old Aug 2, 2012, 9:45 AM   #7
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With regards focus selecting something at random- you can select centre area AF- and adjust the area size- just make sure you keep your subject in the centre.
If you want to increase your standard shot to shot time- turn off the image review.
Burst speed in zoom doesn't change- provided you select the appropriate shutter speed and iso for correct exposure- blur shouldn't be an issue.
With macro- as you found out- zooming increases the minimum focus distance- though just move closer- or purchase the optional adapter and close up lens.
With regards flash- this seems to be one area where the iA works well- providing you not too close to your subject.
Here's some I took with 5.5fps burst mode and zoom together.... nearly all taken in shutter priority at 1/500th sec with auto iso.....
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...-fz-150-a.html
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Old Aug 2, 2012, 10:57 AM   #8
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Thanks simon, I've so much more to learn but I really appreciate your advice! The snowdon race photos are fantastic, the FZ150 is obviously a wonderful camera in the right hands....lets hope I get the hang of it haha! By the way I also came across some photos of yours when I was researching cameras (couldnt decide between the FZ150 and the SX40) - they were photos of a gig in bangor cathedral - my sisters fiancee Math Bolton was in one of the photos - small world eh!!
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Old Aug 2, 2012, 3:48 PM   #9
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G'day drm

Also - regarding flash ... within the scenes collection of items there is "burst with flash" setting > where you can get multiple images at reduced mpx but with flash on each one. Have a look & give it a try, if only to file it away in the "forgettery"

Regards, Phil
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Old Aug 2, 2012, 6:14 PM   #10
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Wow dnm'... small world indeed...!!
Talented chap Mr Bolton... though the gig was in the Victoria Hotel in Menai Bridge...!!
I don't think they'd be up for those kind of tunes in Bangor Cathedral...lol..

Last edited by SIMON40; Aug 2, 2012 at 6:16 PM.
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