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Old Mar 28, 2010, 7:49 PM   #1
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Default Blast-from-the-past FZ5... time to upgrade?

My current camera is my faithful FZ5. I've taken thousands of fine pictures with this workhorse of a camera, but age-wise it's getting a bit long in the tooth.

This is going to sound silly, but how much better is the FZ35 vs. what I have now? I'm going on a big trip to Italy in September, so if I get a new camera, I want to have a couple of outings to get familiar with it before leaving. With the FZ-35 now going for $300, it seems like quite a bargain.

Alternatively, is there any ETA yet for the follow-on to the FZ35/38? With the 35 going for so cheap right now, might that signal a new model is imminent? I'd hate to buy my shiny new camera just to have Panasonic release the follow-on a week later with some new whiz-bang unit that will knock my socks off. (Which is exactly what happened when I got my FZ5... they released the FZ7 the next month, which corrected one of my big pet peeves of poor low-light viewfinder display and lack of manual focus; I often can't see what I'm doing in low-light situations, and have occasionally lost shots due to no focus.)

I keep gazing longingly at entry SLR's, but really don't want to be lugging that kind of bulk around while I'm about town... I consider myself a traveler who takes photos vs. a photographer who travels.

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Old Mar 28, 2010, 7:56 PM   #2
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There have not been to many rumors about a possible fz35/38 replacement. But with the price going down, it is a good time to get one if you are looking to replace you fz5.

If you want something small but have better performance and options then a megazoom like the fz, and want something small enough to travel with. You may want to look at the smaller micro 4/3 EVIL cameras like the panasonic GF-1 or olympus EPL-1. They will give you the options of a dslr, except for the action shooting. And still remain compact. And good for traveling. And like a dslr, you get lens options.

If you want the performance of a dslr and still want compact size the olympus e620 is the smallest dslr on the market. And it is a pretty good dslr with tons of feature.
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Old Mar 28, 2010, 8:17 PM   #3
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Oh, and that new HS10 certainly looks interesting too...

I'll have to check out the E620 again... I remember looking at it several months back, and was kind of put off by the lower-quality IS vs. the in-lens in Nikon and Canon DSLRs. How does the IS in the Oly body compare with that of the FZ35? Really, if I have decent IS, a compact size, and a price that won't break the bank, it is certainly a possibility. (The price and lack of u4/3 long-end zooms kind of knocks the GF-1 and EPL-1 out of the running for me. If I have to use a bulky non u4/3 lens, the compact body isn't nearly as useful.)

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Old Mar 28, 2010, 8:37 PM   #4
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It is not bad, I have in body IS on my epl-1, and it is not quite as good as my T1i, but I have IS on all my lenses, while my canon only has them on the IS lenses. It really is a give an take. I love that my epl-1 match with a panasonic 45-200mm lens gives me the option to chose in body or lens IS. But the bottom line is, the camera still has IS, so it will help no matter what.

The panasonic 45-200 is about 290 dollars. So it is not that bad vs say 250 dollars for the canon ef-s 55-250. The panasonic lens is a better lens then the ef-s. Also with m4/3 if you need more reach, get a 4/3 adapter and mount a olympus 70-300mm on it. It will not work as well on the gf-1 but it works fine on the epl-1
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Old Mar 28, 2010, 11:07 PM   #5
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At 14 ounces in weight, the FZ-35/38 will offer you a very measurable upgrade. The feature set is amazing, and with the price hovering at $(US)310 in the USA, the camera is a real bargain. It is an excellent DSLR alternative.

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Old Mar 29, 2010, 12:46 AM   #6
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Shoturtle and Sarah offer excellent advice, as always. Just make sure the extra weight and the hassle of changing lenses and possibly cleaning the sensor outweigh your need for the bigger sensor. If you are going to be shooting lots of action and low-light, and printing really big, then the DSLR is a no brainer.

Many FZ owners seem to own a DSLR as well, and use them in conjunction depending on their needs. Think of it this way - an FZ35 is about the same price as a new lens for your DSLR!

Good luck
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