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Old Sep 30, 2003, 6:45 PM   #1
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Default Panasonic Lumix FZ2 vs Fuji S5000

(I crossposted this thread in the fuji forum as well as Im guessing most people dont read both)

Ive spent aaaaaaaaaages reading all the various reviews on all the different sites and the consensus seems to be that the S5000 just doesnt cut it in too many ways...

I've started looking at the Panasonic Lumix FZ1 - and will depending on release dates more likely go for the FZ2 which allows a little more manual control. I like the idea of a stabilised Lens, but as a previous Fuji owner (2800z) im a fan.

Its one of those things - unless you have held and tried both for a couple of days under your own shooting requirements its hard to decide what to go for. The things that start to irritate you about a camera tend to only popup a week or so after you have really started to master it.

I know the Panasonic is only 2Megapixels, but Ive never had a problem with 2 Megapixels and image quality on my Fuji 2800z. Most of my images are never printed but only displayed online on web pages.

Macro is particularly of interest to me - and both cameras seem pretty equal. For macro I want to take product shots where the product is on a white seamless background. The 2800z does a great job with this so I presume the S5000 will be similar. The Panasonic FZ1 doesnt seem to have much white balance control, but hopefully the FZ2 which has it listed as one of the improvements will be better.

The rest of my shots are mostly stadium or indoor sporting events - hence the need for the zoom. Most of my shots are of athletes moving (gymnastic routines / bodybuilders actually) so I tend to shoot inside gyms under low light conditions - something several users have said the S5000 is terrible at ??? For pics of bodybuilders I always shoot without a flash on as I find the flash flattens out the detail and definition. It would be useful if the camera only had a short delay between taking pictures. Again I cant tell from the reviews which camera does this better. On the 2800z I currently have the shutter speed is too slow as soon as I turn the flash off so the people on stage blur badly.

The ISO sensitivity of the Panasonic is Auto / 50 / 100 / 200 / 400. Is the lower values of 50 and 100 useful ? I dont really understand what this means.... but it seemed one of the significant differences and I know it related to lighting situations.

Anyway - just my thoughts as I slowly go crazy trying to find the "right" camera.

Any opinions / thoughts / feedback welcome.
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Old Oct 1, 2003, 9:41 AM   #2
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Default Re: Panasonic Lumix FZ2 vs Fuji S5000

I won't tell you which one's better, but here are a few remarks (I own FZ1 btw, so I'll talk about it)

Quote:
Originally Posted by angusm
I've started looking at the Panasonic Lumix FZ1 - and will depending on release dates more likely go for the FZ2 which allows a little more manual control. I like the idea of a stabilised Lens, but as a previous Fuji owner (2800z) im a fan.
in terms of lens things look as if FZ1 Lieca lens is the king (apart from SLR lenses). take a look at this (if you haven't read it already):
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv...per/030807.htm

Quote:
Originally Posted by angusm
great job with this so I presume the S5000 will be similar. The Panasonic FZ1 doesnt seem to have much white balance control, but hopefully the FZ2 which has it listed as one of the improvements will be better.
never hird of such imprevements :/ FZ1 offers a possibility to set WB manualy - just carry a white paper sheat with you all the time and you'll be fine (although I always use auto, only with artificial lighting I turn on incandescent).

Quote:
Originally Posted by angusm
The rest of my shots are mostly stadium or indoor sporting events - hence the need for the zoom. Most of my shots are of athletes moving (gymnastic routines / bodybuilders actually) so I tend to shoot inside gyms under low light conditions - something several users have said the S5000 is terrible at ???
did'n try much, but FZ1 would not produce mirracles either. on high iso it tends to produce a lot of noise (Neat Image can take care of that). However, it can shoot at 4 frames per second and that may be usefull. IS would also help.

Quote:
Originally Posted by angusm
2800z I currently have the shutter speed is too slow as soon as I turn the flash off so the people on stage blur badly.
as far as I've noticed, panasonic IS helps at even up to 1/15 of a second (you can get non-blured images at full zoom with relative ease). However, the general quality is likely to be worse (due to high iso). FZ2 may be more usefull as you can set shutter speed. on the other hand, Fuji has manual controls too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by angusm
The ISO sensitivity of the Panasonic is Auto / 50 / 100 / 200 / 400. Is the lower values of 50 and 100 useful ?
absolutely. imho. anything higher than iso100 in good lighting conditions is redundant and will produce noise where it should not be.
However, samples I found at dpreview Fuji review are quite good (esspecially the one with fruits if it is taken indoors). It's unfortunate, that dpreview has no FZ1 review. here's the quote from Fuji review:
"Perhaps the only complaint could be a lack of optical stabilization, but at this price, size and weight you can't really expect it. "
well, FZ1/2 are cheaper, smaller and lighter. and they have optical IS. sadly they're being ignored on that site..

good luck!
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Old Oct 1, 2003, 3:08 PM   #3
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Thanks Kestas for your detailed reply! I'll check out that review.

Angus
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Old Oct 4, 2003, 1:04 AM   #4
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Angus,

I also have been looking at the FZ1 and the S5000. I've also considered the Oly 750,a used or refurbished Olympus 2100, the Nikon 5700 and the Toshiba 700.

I purchased an FZ1 a week before a very important sports event to give me time to learn how to use the machine. I too was impressed by a Washington Post article, the Leica name and image stabilization. I put the FZ1 through the usual shots of inanimate objects and action shots of our dog in action outside. I also took about a hundred shots in various controlled lighting inside. (I put myself through college doing studio shots of sculpture and architecture students models).

The brightlight outside shots of still objects and animals in action were very good. The interior shots left alot to be desired. Focusing in low light was very poor as was white balance. Noise was much greater than I care for at all settings over iso 50. However, there are workarounds you can employ to limit the above problems. I know there is a definite learning curve for any new camera.

There is no workaround for poor battery performance and the FZ1 I purchased was an energy hog. I'd forgotten why many years ago I stopped buying SLRs that used only proprietary batteries. A camera is usless if it is out of power. The ability to use standard AA batteries is essential to anyone who shoots alot of images (film or digital). I like to be "green" and use re-chargable AAs as my primary source, but sometimes you don't have access to AC power to recharge rechargables.

The final straw with the FZ1 was the day of our big game when the FZ1 lens would not extend, nor would the camera come out of review mode. The camera had been in my possesion for only 6 days. We checked the battery, tried the spare i bought (just in case) but nada, nothing, only review mode.

Granted, I probably got the one bad FZ1, but I've owned Canons, Konicas, Pentax, Olympus and others and no camera has ever given up the first week. My Canon SLR 35mm had to come to the rescue for our big game. I returned the FZ1.

I had tried out the Fuji S5000 at our local photoshop prior to buying the FZ1 and loved the way it felt and the position of the controls. It's rubberized exterior and solid lens hood said "I can take whatever ya got". It had the low-light focus assist many digital cameras (and the FZ1) are missing. But I was swayed by image stabilization and the Leica name on the FZ1.

Photogs have been taking telephoto still-shots with SLRs for years without IS, you just need to take a breath and squeeze on the exhale or use a remote, support or POD. Any camera will take good pictures in the early morning or during beauty light before dusk. My senses told me theFuji S5000 felt wonderful in hand but my brain saw only Leica and and new video cam-corder technology that promised shortcuts.

Learn your craft and go with your heart. I always liked Fuji film colors better than Kodak so why shouldn't they be able to do it digitally. I'm buying a S5000 tomorrow. Good luck with your decision.
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Old Oct 4, 2003, 2:23 AM   #5
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Thanks for the feedback on the FZ1. I actually bought a S5000 yesterday for various reasons. I have owned several Fujis before and had always been happy with them. I mainly wanted one for sports photography and decided that the ability to take multiple photos with very little lag time between was the main thing I liked about the S5000. I havent yet taken any outdoor photos - but so far so good. I did buy a UV lens filter which attaches to the 55mm lens extension nicely to protect the lens. I also bought a small portable tripod to account for the lack of stabilisation at long zooms. I dont like how the LCD on the back is so small. Anyway - so far so good.
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Old Oct 4, 2003, 5:58 AM   #6
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Congratulations on your new Fuji!

However..

Quote:
Originally Posted by webfoot
The brightlight outside shots of still objects and animals in action were very good. The interior shots left alot to be desired. Focusing in low light was very poor as was white balance.

There is no workaround for poor battery performance and the FZ1 I purchased was an energy hog.
I must disagree completely with all statements. focussing is fine for me. White ballanse is very good (however, you cant use auto in low loght without flash - just change to incandescent). Battery life is huge ands easily equals the life my pal gets from his really good AA rechargables with Olympus 4000Z. never in four monts I felt the need for the spare one. However, you should have constant autofocussing off (it'll be on by default) - it eats battery and is hardly usefull for the most part. Thats just my experience.

Please, post you first impressions with Fuji in comparisson to FZ1 if you get a chance on this same thread.

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Old Oct 9, 2003, 11:10 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by webfoot
The brightlight outside shots of still objects and animals in action were very good. The interior shots left alot to be desired. Focusing in low light was very poor as was white balance. Noise was much greater than I care for at all settings over iso 50.
Absolutely true. That's the reason I abandoned it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by webfoot
There is no workaround for poor battery performance and the FZ1 I purchased was an energy hog.
This is strange though. Something must be wrong. The FZ1 performed the best in terms of battery life among all the digicams I ever owned!
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Old Oct 9, 2003, 11:46 AM   #8
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[quote="webfoot"]Angus,

There is no workaround for poor battery performance and the FZ1 I purchased was an energy hog. I'd forgotten why many years ago I stopped buying SLRs that used only proprietary batteries. A camera is usless if it is out of power. The ability to use standard AA batteries is essential to anyone who shoots alot of images (film or digital). I like to be "green" and use re-chargable AAs as my primary source, but sometimes you don't have access to AC power to recharge rechargables.

<Response>
I really felt obligated to respond to this comment. Battery hog is definitely not an adjective that you can use aboutthe FZ1. Even when the camera is left on for extended periods of time after you take the photo, 150-200 shots is the low average. I've conditioned myself to take the photo and turn the camera off. Using this approach 400-500 shots is easily in reach. I can't explain your experience, but I believe many will support my comments that the FZ1 provides very good battery life.
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Old Oct 9, 2003, 4:32 PM   #9
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I have owned digicams from fuji (AAbatteries) Olympus (proprietary batteries) and Panasonic fz1 (proprietary) The fz1 by far out preforms anything I have ever used in regards to battery life. I get 300 or more shots with lcd on. I think I have it set to 5min standby.
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