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Old Oct 10, 2008, 7:49 PM   #1
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Okay folks. I've been researching and doing all my "due diligence" towards finding out which camera I want to purchase, and it's come down to the excellent FZ28, or, finding an FZ50 and just adding a good (Raynox?) wide angle lens (I don't think native 35mm is enough). I still have a Canon for video mode, so that point is covered. And I think the superior ISO performance of the 28 is easily offset by the superior IQ of the 50, and boy did I just open a can of worms with that statement. But I've got to tell you, although I've seen some really good samples taken with the 28, there are also some not-so-good ones out there. Conversly, I have yet to see a less-than-great shot from an FZ50.

Oh sure, I know there are many variables involved in the quality of a picture, and that the larger sensor in the 50 should inherently produce a better IQ, and that it's larger, heavier, and I'd have to carry around and swap out the WA lens whenever I wanted it, but man, it's really hard to fault that camera. No wonder just about every review done of it called it the best bridge camera available. And no, I don't want a dslr.

I was really anticipating the FZ28, and hoping the Venus IV engine would help with the noise, which it has. But every time I convince myself to buy the 28, I wander back to some 50 picture somewhere and go ................jeez..............................

So what do you more experienced folks think? Am I missing something obvious, or am I looking at this whole thing wrong? It's hard to ignore the almost cult following of the FZ50. Yet the FZ28 is the closest all-in-one do-everything camera I've ever seen.

Thanks for your help and expertise,
Scrench
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Old Oct 10, 2008, 8:25 PM   #2
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Depending on the wide adapter you pick out for the FZ50, you'll wind up with either a 28mm or 24mm wide angle end.

If you go for the FZ50, forget the Raynox wide lens...not a good option. Cheap because it's one of the worst performers.Take a look at these, shot with the FZ50 and Panasonic DMW-LW55, which gives you a 24mm f2.8 wide angle..

http://gmchappell.smugmug.com/galler...39939626_8RhPe

The other thing you have to consider is, these wide ad-ons also add on some bent-line distortion that you need to correct. In my case, there's a program called PTLens with a profile for the FZ50+DMW-LW55 combination, so it takes me all of two clicks to correct an image shot with that combination.

I agree, at ISO 100 and 200, the FZ50 will give marginally better image quality, with many nice features like the manual zoom ring and hot shoe. I still have and use mine from time to time, especially when I want to use flash with my Olympus TTL flash unit, but the FZ28 has tons to recommend it with better JPEG ISO 400 performance and a much smaller size, making it very easy to carry.

Actually, both are easy to carry. I took my FZ50 and the wide lens to Paris last year instead of my DSLR outfit and love the light-weight of the FZ50 compared to the previous year when I took the DSLR and three fast, excellent but extremely heavy lenses.

You wouldn't go wrong either way.
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Old Oct 10, 2008, 8:49 PM   #3
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Hi Greg,

First off, thanks for your reply. I've enjoyed reading many of your posts here and on other forums, and you always have something relevent and insightful to say. Your expertise is greatly appreciated.

Your FZ50 shots on your link are wonderful, completely pushing me more in the 50 direction, especially the St Genevieve shot. I'm not so sure that the 28 could have done quite the justice the 50 did. That shot even up to X3 looks spectacular in my opinion. I wasn't aware that you owned both cameras. Another frequent poster, Sarah Joyce (Mtclimber), owns both, and is of the opinion that the IQ from both cameras is prettty close. What do you think?

Thanks for the heads-up on the Raynox. I just assumed it was the way to go since it appears that most people buy them for their macro shots. I didn't notice any bending in your photos (unless intentional), so your combination definitely looks like a winner to me.

And now the most obvious question. Since you already owned the FZ50, and obviously get stunning results with it, why did you get the FZ28?

Thanks Again,
Scrench

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Old Oct 10, 2008, 9:19 PM   #4
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Hello Again Greg,

OK, I just got finished looking at all of the images you posted, besides the first page, and can't help but feel like they're making the case for the FZ50. Extremely cool choice to not use the PTlens on the Thanksgiving Stairway shot. Each pane is easy to zoom in on and still see great detail. Not just that one, but the colors in many of your interior shots are just gorgeous. Did you use the hotshoe flash with them, and are they in jpeg or RAW? And I've got to say that as much as I'd love to have a 27mm wide angle, 24mm would be that much better.

To be fair, have you assembled a site with images from the FZ28 for comparison? There is no doubt that you are a very capable photographer, probably a pro for all I know, so any differences in quality would have to be attributed to the cameras. And I realize you already said that you thought the 50 was marginally better, but every time I see 50 shots like yours, that margin looks to me like a gaping chasm.


Thank You,
Scrench
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Old Oct 10, 2008, 9:38 PM   #5
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Scrench wrote:
Quote:
Hi Greg,

First off, thanks for your reply. I've enjoyed reading many of your posts here and on other forums, and you always have something relevent and insightful to say. Your expertise is greatly appreciated.

Your FZ50 shots on your link are wonderful, completely pushing me more in the 50 direction, especially the St Genevieve shot. I'm not so sure that the 28 could have done quite the justice the 50 did. That shot even up to X3 looks spectacular in my opinion. I wasn't aware that you owned both cameras. Another frequent poster, Sarah Joyce (Mtclimber), owns both, and is of the opinion that the IQ from both cameras is prettty close. What do you think?
Quote:
I would agree with Sarah, and with your comment about the X3 size. At that point, you'd be talking about a really big print. The X3 is my favorite size to view my images on Smugmug, other than the fit to page size where I can see it all at once.

Thanks for the heads-up on the Raynox. I just assumed it was the way to go since it appears that most people buy them for their macro shots. I didn't notice any bending in your photos (unless intentional), so your combination definitely looks like a winner to me.
Quote:
The Raynox macro lenses are excellent. I have the lower power version myself. PTLens does work wonders with that combination in correcting the distortion.
Quote:
And now the most obvious question. Since you already owned the FZ50, and obviously get stunning results with it, why did you get the FZ28?
Quote:
Uh, OH.....I knew this was coming at some point! I love Panasonic digicams. Have SEVERAL...the FZ50, TZ5, LX2, two TZ3's I need to give away to someone, and now, this FZ28.....not to mention the DSLR outfit I use to shoot weddings and family events.
Quote:
I'm not going to carry the DSLR everywhere, so I need a smaller camera. I needed the FZ28 like a hole in my head, but for most of the type stuff I'll shoot with it, I prefer the FZ28 to the FZ50 because of the extremely small size and because, honestly, the technology in it is muchimproved compared to the FZ50. A benefit of already having the FZ50 is, the battery is the same one for the FZ28 and I already had three extras, so I alreadyhave plenty of backup power for a full day shoot with the FZ28.
Quote:
I like taking cameras to sporting events, but often DSLR's are not allowed in to college and/or pro events with thelonger tele zooms. People have even looked funny atmy FZ50 because of it's physical size, but no one will look twice at the FZ28 and it has the great tele zoom on it.
Quote:
I don't need an LX3 either.....but I'm very tempted in that and the 18mm super-wide accessory lens.
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