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Old Jun 16, 2004, 2:43 AM   #1
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Hello all,

sorry to bother you, but I need your opinions. I am looking for a allround digicam, robust in handling and quality to replace my Minolta Dynax 500si (traditional SLR) most of the time. I posted some information here:

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...amp;forum_id=9

As you can see - all photography needs are covered (ok - no under water and astro-photography most of the time ) but everything a family needs from macro to landscape, portrait, sports, vacation and small movies.

I tested Fuji F700 and Canon S1 IS and gave back both. The Canon is nice but AF id terrible in low light - I hope for much better on the Oly. Am not sure how the panorama assist works (stitching some pics together) with the Oly. I will use that feature quite often, on average with 2-5 shots at 35-40mm I'd say.

I like the idea of a durable body but heard of problems with the zoom lenses beeing somewhat "wobbly" - did you ever encounter problems?

I liked the image quality of the Canon in ISO 50 mode when I was outside in bright light... Reviews say the Oly sharpens way too much and pics are grainy... what do you think?

What's with PC connectivity and Software? OK for everyday needs?

Oh yes - the lens cover. Is it ok? I mean - is it securely fastened to the lens? The Canon one gets loose if a light breeze is going

Would be happy to hear your comments, thanks in advance.
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Old Jun 18, 2004, 1:50 AM   #2
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Many of these issues are due to a lack of understanding about photography in general.

The more you zoom, the less light you let into the camera. The C-7x0 cameras will have the same "problems" with low light that the S1 has. Some cameras (and add-on flashes like the FL-50/40) have focus assist beams, but they are only good for 15-20 feet. The reason why a certain amount of light is necessary is that focusing is done by detecting differences in contrast. Check out:
http://www.howstuffworks.com/autofocus3.htm

The wobbly lens complaints are a red herring...the C-Series lens is designed to "float" in the assembly. Most C-Series users recommend a filter tube adapter with a UV filter to be kept on the camera at all times.

With consumer cameras in this price range, there's certain limits to quality. Last night I used a professional camera (Olympus E-1) and there's no comparison when it comes to quality or speed. I had a look at your Dynax 500SI, and trying to put myself in the shoes as a user of that camera, I'd probably not be happy with anything less than a dSLR. Many of those issues will be resolved with a medium price dSLR which has a larger CCD.
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Old Jun 18, 2004, 5:37 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reply Mikefellh

I accept the argument with the light and the contrast. There are times when the camera logic will fail. I can live with that - there is MF to use then. But the Canon S1 IS can't AF even with high contrast in low light conditions.

I tried hours! Used all kind of stuff. My rule of thumb is: when I (with my eyes) can see it and can MF - then the camera can see it too and should AF correctly most of the time. With dim light I mean something where 1/30 at ISO 400 is enough for a good picture. Thats in the evening, or on a cloudy day in the wood, or inside with half-dimmed lights and so on. I bought me a new printer and had a HUGE white carton with images, graphics and text in different sizes and directions as a test object. I aimed at the black text on white/light grey background in dim light and the Canon was unable to get a sharp shot. Ridiculous.

As a comparison. I was in the shop yesterday to see how the 5060 will do. Had only problems when I was too near with the lenses/Zoom to an object (dont know the distance where AF starts working for the 5060 - bet around 15-20 cm or so). Everything else worked great and fast. High contrast and low contrast areas, objects behind glass with and without reflexions... Only time the cam fired the AF lamp was when I aimed at my shoes/trousers (black jeans) in a dark corner was not a fair test I know but the cam did surprisingly well!

Also the fitted carpeting (you know those things with no real color and no structures) was focussed correctly.

AF seldom cycled through whole focus range, mostly got "right direction" and it was like: press half down .. focussed.

So it can be done

Only read about the wobbly lens. Didnt found anything with my test model...

Well ... as for my Dynax 500si. I will not sell it It will still serve a purpose. But since I am using it quite often we have way too much photos in photo albums... Furthermore I like the possibilities a digicam offers (see pic right after shot, focus and exposure series, ...)

And the movie function. I had a super-8 film camera and didnt started with a camcorder, but sometimes movement is important to catch a moment. So this is a big thing for me and my wife. 640x480 at 15fps is what I am aiming for: was good enough at the Canon S1 IS - will comsume less memory than 30 fps.

I was tempted to test the 770 from Olympus but some reviews said the AF is not so good...

Regards
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Old Jun 21, 2004, 9:22 AM   #4
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[suP]I bought the 5060 a while back to replace an old Nikon 3mp I bought years ago. I looked long and hard, needing at least 5mp for decent print quality, but most of all I needed an adequate lens for everyday use, including family shots etc. I was attracted by the 5060 because it has a wide angle lens, and zooms to 110 from 28mm approximately. I also liked the fact that the screen is reversible to protect it when not in use. I can say that after 6 months use I am more than delighted with it, and can only say that if the 8080 had been available when I bought I would have bought that instead, because of the 28/140 range and 8mp quality. I particularly like the ease of use in aperture priority and shutter priority, with the thumb wheel exactly where the thumb falls at the top right rear of the camera body. There are a number of 5mp cameras out there, but I think that you will appreciate either Olympus mentioned because of the wide angle lens. It is so useful. Attached is a photo of a rhododendron I took a few weeks back on F2.8 AP, 28mm. If pictures paint a thousand words then this should convince you[/suP]
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Old Jun 22, 2004, 2:43 AM   #5
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Thanks for the info and the nice shot.

The 5060 did pass nearly all tests - it failed on the "my wife likes it" test. A bit too heavy and too big. I could live with that... but she saw the 770 standing right next to it. With the 10x Zoom and the MPEG-4 movie... you know.

I can compensate the 28mm with a panorama shot I guess. Oh well.
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