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Old Jun 8, 2010, 11:32 AM   #1
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Default zx1(zr1) low light/indoor performances

I've read quite a lot of reviews about this camera but I still can't decide (the alternative is the fuji f70). My main concern is the indoor/low light (without flash) performance as I can not find (on the field) pictures at 400-800-1600 ISO...so I can not really compare to the fuji...

I've been using a fuji f100fd (that has to be replaced..) and I'd like to know if the panasonic has at least similar low-light skills...

thanks!
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 11:48 AM   #2
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What do you mean by "on the field"?

The Panasonic DMC-FZ35 (DMC-FZ38) was announced at the same time as the DMC-ZX1 (DMC-ZR3) and has the same sensor from what I can see of the specs. So, noise levels should be comparable (chances are, the image processing is the same in two cameras using the same sensor that were launched at the same time). IOW, you should be able to look at DMC-FZ35/FZ38 samples and see if you think the noise level is acceptable at the viewing/print sizes needed.
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 11:52 AM   #3
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I mean photos taken by (common) people in real situations, not in reviews...
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 12:01 PM   #4
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Some of the photo sharing sites allow you to search by camera model now. Here's one example:

http://www.flickr.com/cameras/panasonic/dmc-zr1/

Just use the drop down list on the page to pick a photo type and it will pull up the ones tagged that way by users.
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 12:49 PM   #5
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non of the megazooms will perform well in low light without the flash. 1600iso is put into the camera, but it gets really noise up there. About 800iso is where they perform well upto. Allot of the photos you will see of higher iso will be post process with noise reduction for higher iso shots or shot with a longer exposure time and lower iso.
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 2:04 PM   #6
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on flickr I can not find many indoor photos, just a couple...

then of course it's a compact camera, so no miracles...but I just ask myself if the panasonic is better than my broken fuji f100fd in low light and if the fuji f70 is a better choice for my "needs" (I like very much zx1 pics in normal light conditions as well as hd videos of course)
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 4:47 PM   #7
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This past Saturday my granddaughter had her dance recital, indoors with poor lighting and fast action. I knew this would be a real challenge for my FZ28 and it was my first try in this type of situation.

Looking back, my biggest mistake was paying too much attention to keeping my ISO as low as possible (noise phobia) because my best pictures were at 800 iso. I'm sorry to report than only 6 of over 200 pictures were at this setting, the rest at 400 iso.

I shot all in shutter priority (1/160-1/200). Also, I used the EVF almost exclusively and was 60-75 feet from the dancers. Using the view finder worked well except I didn't take the time to review many shots and make adjustments.

None of my pictures would win any contest, but several are certainly good enough to share with friends/relatives. But shooting at 800 iso produced the best IQ, at least for me.

One more thing. I shot at 5mp instead of full 10mp thinking the lower resolution would help with noise. Is that thinking correct?

This first picture is at 800 ISO, f3.2, 1/160, 86mm. The example of 400 iso wouldn't load. I'll try again.
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 5:00 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoelG View Post
One more thing. I shot at 5mp instead of full 10mp thinking the lower resolution would help with noise. Is that thinking correct?
You're usually better off using the camera's highest resolution and quality settings, then downsizing yourself later. But, that varies by camera.

Quote:
...The example of 400 iso wouldn't load. I'll try again.
The image size or dimensions were probably way too large if it was rejected.

In most cases, if you exceed the maximum limits we have set (image dimensions should be no larger than 1024 pixels on their longest side, with a file size of no larger than 253.9KB or 260,000 bytes), the forums software will attempt to downsize and recompress them for you. But, if they exceed the limits too much, it may not take them at all.

We used to give an error message and refuse to let members upload images that were any larger. But, we decided to try and resize and recompress them instead.

However, it's a bad idea to exceed the set limits you'll see when uploading a photo. That's because you'll end up with softer looking images compared to downsizing them yourself with most editors (and the EXIF is stripped out if the forums need to downsize them, too).

Note my comments in this post:

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ge...ml#post1026659

So, I'd make sure to downsize them so that they're no larger than 1024 pixels on their longest side, and no larger than 260,000 bytes before attaching them to a post here. That way, the forums software will not attempt to modify them.

If you don't have an editor capable of downsizing, just use something like the free Irfanview. After opening an image for viewing, you can downsize it using the Image>Resize/Resample menu choice. When you use "Save As" after downsizing, just change the JPEG Quality slider to around 80% and it will probably keep the file size within the max limits set for uploading to the forums if the image dimensions are within limits (no larger than 1024 pixels on the longest side).
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 5:04 PM   #9
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This one's 400 ISO, 1/160, f3.0, 61mm.
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 6:03 PM   #10
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thanks for the images, but it's a fz28, not a zx1, right?
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