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Old Feb 14, 2011, 3:22 AM   #1
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Default FZ observations & a couple questions

I've had the 3 and the 4 and recently the 5 - all were good until they died . . . not the 5 it's still going strong. I bought the 28 used less than a month ago and then learned I could buy a new 35 on Amazon for little more than I paid for the used 28. So I haven't had much time to get to know the 28 before getting the 35.

My first real use of the 35 was yesterday at an airshow. I took 171 pictures without help of tripod or even shoulder or elbow bracing. Two were blurred due to gross mishandling of the camera but many, many of the shots that would have been blurred with my earlier FZ's were sharp as a tack. The image stabilization on the 35 is phenomenal. Another very useful feature when taking pictures of fast-moving aircraft is the auto tracking - or whatever the feature is called that lets you lock on focus way out while the camera automatically adjusts the focus as the plane comes toward you so you can hit the shutter at just the right moment without worrying about focus. Everything I shot except the two I mentioned was perfectly focused.

Question - does the FZ28 I have also do the auto-tracking? I've read the image stabilization on the 35 was improved by a factor of 2 over the 28 so that alone is worth the upgrade, but I'm wondering whether the 28 has the auto tracking feature. I really didn't get to know the camera and it's going to take a while to do so since I'm going to be using the 35 for everything. I'll only be using the 28 when the 35 isn't with me for some reason. I keep one at home, one in whatever vehicle I'm driving and another one in the hangar (FZ-5).

A question about the 35. I have set the camera up to take 3 megapixel pictures. Yet I find for some reason that the camera has jumped up to higher megapixel settings - I notice this when it takes a longer time to write to the SD card (4GB Class 10 Transcend) or when emailing a picture I've taken. "Why is this taking so long?" I ask myself and then check the picture size and find it is up to 10.5 or something higher. I didn't do that! I set it back to 3m and find that later it has changed again. I suppose I'll figure it out eventually but it's easier to ask the 35 fundis here on the forum.

On the way back from the airshow I was shooting one-handed and blind at a friend on the freeway on a motorcycle, just guessing that it was framed. Naturally the framing left something to be desired, but the pictures were perfectly exposed and completely free of blur. This 35 is dramatically better than the FZ-5 in important ways. Whether it is that much better than the 28 I don't know yet, but it's one fantastic point and shoot.

I was laughing at the "pros" yesterday dragging around their bulky 10 pound "long" lenses. One fellow I asked was proud of the fact his monster lens was 200 mm. I mentioned my little toy with its Leica lens was just under 500 mm. He just nodded his head glumly.

From what I'm reading here on the forum if I shoot at 3 megapixels I'm actually able to get more than 500 mm at full zoom . . . am I understanding that correctly?

Thanks for any responses or tips on this new marvel. I've come a long way since my Brownie Hawkeye.

Mike
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Old Feb 14, 2011, 4:08 AM   #2
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From what I'm reading here on the forum if I shoot at 3 megapixels I'm actually able to get more than 500 mm at full zoom . . . am I understanding that correctly?
You sure are - it's automatic; as you reduce the megapixels, the maximum focal length increases.
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Old Feb 14, 2011, 12:02 PM   #3
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A question about the 35. I have set the camera up to take 3 megapixel pictures. Yet I find for some reason that the camera has jumped up to higher megapixel settings - I notice this when it takes a longer time to write to the SD card (4GB Class 10 Transcend) or when emailing a picture I've taken. "Why is this taking so long?" I ask myself and then check the picture size and find it is up to 10.5 or something higher. I didn't do that! I set it back to 3m and find that later it has changed again. I suppose I'll figure it out eventually but it's easier to ask the 35 fundis here on the forum.

Mike
I'm so glad to hear that you are having success with your FZ! Can you post a few images? I'm dying to see them. As for your question, that puzzles me why the image size changes. The only thing I can think of, is that if you set your camera to iA or one of the pre-set settings, it automatically changes the image size to a pre-programmed size. But I'm just guessing!
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Old Feb 14, 2011, 2:07 PM   #4
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Yes I've just left it on iA unless I'm shooting macro. I'll get around to exploring the scene modes I suppose. I have considered that in the iA mode the camera will decide on it's own what megapixel setting to use. I guess I need to get in the book unless else chimes in to explain this behavior.
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Old Feb 14, 2011, 3:24 PM   #5
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Looking at the FZ28 this morning I see that it does have the auto tracking feature. The only differences then that I know of are the image stabilization not as good as the 35. It (FZ28) doesn't have stereo microphones and I think it's not as capable with video - features I don't use anyway - not yet anyway. The files are too large to send to anyone over the net. I guess the only way around this is to use flash drives and send them through the mail, just like we used to do with photographs. The horror.

The3 28 looks just like the 35 in form and function now that I'm comparing them directly.

The image stabilization is worth the upgrade. Many previous pictures taken with the FZ 3/4/5 (don't know yet about the 28) were blurry from shutter release shake and other movement. Those days are over with this FZ35.

There was something about the FZ40/100 that left me uninterested in it for some reason. I wonder what it was . . .
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Old Feb 14, 2011, 3:27 PM   #6
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Mike-

Welcome to the Panasonic P+S Folder. We are a friendly group and there is lots to learn in our folder. I have also attached the FZ-35 beginner's Guide for you. Also based on the photo format selected, 10.5 is the default resolution setting. So after setting the 3mp resolution, and then powering off that setting is deleted and on powering up the FZ35 returns to it default resolution of 10.5mp when the 16:9 photo format is selected.

Sarah Joyce

Panasonic FZ-35 Beginner’s Guide


The easiest way to get started is to first read completely through the Owner’s Manual and charge the battery. When you are ready to take your first photos, do this:

(1) Set “P” on the Mode Selector. “P” stands for Programmed Auto Mode. It is an Automatic Mode that allows the user to make adjustments to the ISO/Sensitivity, to the Exposure Compensation, the Flash Compensation, the WB or White Balance, the Burst Mode, the Scene Modes, and the Focusing Options.

(2) Set to ISO to “Auto ISO. You probably want to consider limiting how far the camera can increase the ISO/Sensitivity setting by itself. I would recommend that for outdoor photos that you limit the ISO/Sensitivity increase to ISO 400. For indoor use limit the ISO increase to ISO 800.


(3) Set the WB to White Balance to “Auto WB” when shooting out doors. If you are shooting with flash indoors you can keep the Auto WB in place. If you are shooting indoors without flash, use tungsten or incandescent WB, it is indicated by the small logo symbol of a light bulb. Set the Flash mode selector to the Auto Flash position. This is not a perfect mode and there are two instances where the camera can be confused on when to deploy the flash.

(4)Set the focus point initially to center point focus. This allows you to select
exactly where the camera will focus. Focus is attained by gently pressing the
shutter release to the half way point. When the camera locks focus, it will signal
that focus lock to you. Now, while holding the shutter release at the half way
point, re-frame your photo as necessary, using the EVF, or Electronic View
Finder.

(5) When you at pleased with the photo framing, gently depress the shutter to its full length. The emphasis here is on the word gently. Some users refer to the action as squeezing the shutter slowly. The main thing you want to avoid is jabbing at the shutter, as this will cause sudden camera movement overpowering the IS or image stabilization system and blurring the photo.

(6) After the photo has been recorded, check how the exposure looks on the cameras LCD screen. If it is to light, it is over exposed. If it is too dark, it is under exposed. You are looking for the midway point where the properly exposed photo looks like are properly tuned TV set. A photo that is too light can be correct by using Minus Exposure Compensation. Make the initial Minus Exposure Compensation setting EV-0.7, take the photo, and check the result on the camera’s LCD screen. Then increase or decrease the Exposure Compensation to attain the proper LCD screen appearance. If the photo is too dark, you will have to apply Positive Exposure Compensation. Begin with a setting of EV+0.7, and then again adjust the Exposure compensation again, as required to attain the proper LCD screen appearance.


(7) After the photo is taken, you will notice that a flashing red light will blink on the camera’s LCD screen. This is an indication that the camera is recording the image to the camera’s flash memory card.

(8) If you are indoors and desire to take a flash photo using the camera’s built-in flash unit (a) check that the Flash Selector is still selected to the Auto Flash mode. (b) recheck that the WB is still set to Auto ISO. (c) Keep the camera to subject distance at 11.5 feet or less to achieve the proper exposure. If you are photographing a group and you must increase the amount of light projected from the camera’s built-in flash unit so that the Flash Range can be increased from the normal maximum Flash Range of 11.5 feet, to a greater value. The adjustment on the Flash Compensation scale works in the same way as Exposure Compensation did. Positive Flash Compensation increases the flash output and the Flash Range. Negative Flash Compensation reduces the flash output and the Flash Range.


(9) If you want to take a close up photo, where the camera to subject distance is 30 cm (.99 feet) or less, you will have to select the Macro or Close-up Mode whose symbol is a small Tulip logo. Again the same photo taking procedure will apply. Gently depress the shutter release to the half way point, the camera locks the focus and give you the focus locked signal. Re-frame your focus as necessary after allowing the camera to focus on the exact point desired. If the photo environment’s lighting is low, select the flash, WB , and Auto ISO, as previously described. The built-in flash unit will reduce the light output of the flash due to the reduced Flash Range between camera and subject in this Macro or Close-up mode. After taking your close-up photo check the camera’s LCD screen for proper exposure. If the exposure is too light or too dark you will use the Exposure Compensation procedures outlined above. If you are taking the Macro or Close-up photo while employing flash, once again check the LCD screen for proper exposure. If the result is too light or too dark, you will use the Flash Compensation feature as described previously.

(10)As lighting conditions change you will have to adjust your camera’s WB to get
the correct color in your photo. There are fixed WB settings for bright sunshine,
cloudy or foggy conditions, tungsten or incandescent lighting, and for fluorescent
lighting (several varieties).

(11)Keep in mind that there are indeed minimum focus distances for each lens
position. In the Macro or Close up mode, the minimum focus distance is 2.5
inches. In the normal focus mode, without any zooming, the minimum focus
distance is 36 inches, or 3 feet. As the camera zooms out further, expect the
minimum focus to also increase. So, if the camera will not lock focus, the
problem is most probably that you are at less than the minimum focus distance
for that lens setting.

(12) The better the light, the better your photos will be. As the light level decreases
measurably you will find the photo quality will fall and the camera will have a
harder time recording your photo. So good light is essential to good photos.

(13) Photographers are like concert pianists: the more you practice and learn, the
better your photos will be.

(14) Take your time and learn how the changes that you make to your camera,
directly affect how your camera records your photo.

(15) Here is a quick review of the options on your Mode Selector:

IA= Intelligent Auto. Keep in mind that the ISO/Sensitivity range can be selected in the camera menu as well.
P=Programed Auto. This works just like Full Automatic only it allows you to make some changes to ISO/Sensitivity, flash options, Exposure Compensation, Flash Compensation, White Balance etc.
S=Shutter Priority. You select the shutter speed and the camera adjusts for the proper exposure by adjusting the aperture.
A=Aperture Priority. You select the aperture and the camera automatically sets the proper exposure by adjust the shutter speed.
M=Manual Mode. You select the shutter speed and aperture and the camera reports if your selection will produce the produce the proper exposure, by displaying the wrong exposure in red color and the correct exposure in green color. So understand that using the Manual Mode will require some manual adjustments on your part.

Important Note: This guide is not intended to replace the Panasonic FZ35 Owner’s Manual. It is only an informational guide to facilitate new owners getting started with their FZ35 cameras.
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Old Feb 16, 2011, 11:34 PM   #7
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> . . . the FZ35 returns to it default resolution of 10.5mp when the 16:9 photo format is selected.

Where does one select the photo format?I notice my FZ28 stays at whatever megapixel setting I set it at. Is this something new with the 35?

Anyway . . . I don't see a menu option for changing aspect ratio. I expect this is because of having it set on iA. I'll need to go to another dial setting to get to the aspect ratio choices I suppose. Which means, if I use iA most of the time I'll have to constantly be on guard for picture size changes.

The 35 is out in the car and it's raining right now. You can't expect me to go out in the rain.

I do have the book next to me. Guess I better break the cellophane .

Mike
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Old Feb 17, 2011, 9:58 AM   #8
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""I was laughing at the "pros" yesterday dragging around their bulky 10 pound "long" lenses. One fellow I asked was proud of the fact his monster lens was 200 mm. I mentioned my little toy with its Leica lens was just under 500 mm. He just nodded his head glumly.""
I couldn't help but observe the comment and must say , there are NO comparisons when trying to compare between the 2. His "10 pound long lense" will out perform a P&S by FAR so there;s NO comparisons, sorry I'm not trying to be rude so please don't take it that way as I used to think this way until I went DSLR and tried a 400mm and the wow factor was amazing with excellent detail etc that can't be found in a p&s...
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Old Feb 18, 2011, 2:05 PM   #9
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Actually I only saw two guys with long lenses.

There was a time in my life when I thought I could tell the difference in quality between a picture taken with a long lens and one with an FZ. That's not true anymore.

Other than the really poor low-light capability of the FZ's (at least the earlier ones with which I have experience) I never find myself wishing for a more capable lens these days.

I think the long lenses are for those for whom photography is a very serious hobby or is their profession. In this era of camera phones and twitters, quality photography is appreciated only by the experts. The quality of the FZ lenses seems excellent to me. I'm pretty sure I couldn't tell the difference between a shot taken with a long lens and one with my FZ35.

Mike
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Old Feb 18, 2011, 2:19 PM   #10
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Actually I only saw two guys with long lenses.

There was a time in my life when I thought I could tell the difference in quality between a picture taken with a long lens and one with an FZ. That's not true anymore.

Other than the really poor low-light capability of the FZ's (at least the earlier ones with which I have experience) I never find myself wishing for a more capable lens these days.

I think the long lenses are for those for whom photography is a very serious hobby or is their profession. In this era of camera phones and twitters, quality photography is appreciated only by the experts. The quality of the FZ lenses seems excellent to me. I'm pretty sure I couldn't tell the difference between a shot taken with a long lens and one with my FZ35.

Mike
Mike - I agree that in most cases, for personal use and sharing with friends, FZ35 is plenty good enough. It's a real nifty little camera!
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