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Old Jan 5, 2013, 2:44 PM   #11
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I had the FZ20 way back when, which had one similarity with the FZ200...its f2.8 across the entire zoom range lens.
Thanks for that info about the f2.8 feature way back when the FZ20 was new. I wasn't aware of that, and I cannot recall that any of the current reviews mentioned that fact. So why then are we bombarded with pseudo startling news that the FZ200 has f2.8 throughout the zoom range? Good public relations?

However, the FZ200 does have a more extensive feature set that elevates it above the FZ20.

I think I observed the same softness in FZ200 images that you cited, but I chalked that off to the lower res of the images posted. I'd like to see some of those same images posted in HR.
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 6:48 PM   #12
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Indeed the FZ-200 wasn't Panny's pioneer in the f/2.8 stakes- although after the FZ20 (which I owned) the 200 was the first to get it back- after quite a few years away..!
I liked my old 5mp FZ20- but like most things- is now seriously trumped by today's comparable cameras.
The lens suffered bad fringing issues and image noise past iso 200 was awful..!!
Getting back to the F717- I guess it might be interesting to compare it to the FZ200's images if they were downsized to match the 5mp of the 717..!

Here's some various FZ200 images on a Flickr set...
http://www.flickr.com/photos/rudypoh...oto_8160736676

And a portrait...
http://www.flickr.com/photos/rudypoh...57631942039554
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 7:07 PM   #13
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There have been several threads here by new owners of the FZ200, posting their images.


I visited the Leica forum. There are some pics taken with the V-Lux 4 posted in HR on Flickr. But very few photos of people.

I can't see that many were what you'd refer to as tack-sharp. Some highlights were blown out as observed in a few FZ200 sample pics. But not that many.

From what I see, V-Lux 4 and FZ200 cameras are capable of giving very good photos. Also, I could not see any startling differences that would justify the huge price gap between the cameras.

But, when I called Leica with some questions, a man in New Jersey answered and responded directly and to the point. He actually has hands-on experiences with the cameras sold. Plus, the cameras are there close at hand, so he can provide better answers for questions asked. That was a very different experience from what I received from Panasonic. If I got through to anybody at Panasonic, it was a computer-monitor-screen-reader from the Philippines. Since that person's only knowledge comes from reading their monitor, it was no better than I had already seen. Then Panasonic emailed a reply to my question about any rubber eye cup protection, which said that the entire camera was rubber coated.

Would having a quality response from Leica be worth spending nearly twice as much? (I have no answer other than posing that question.)

Something else I learned, while I realize that my F717 is an ancient relic, it shares the same sensor size as FZ200 and V-Lux 4. From what I speculated previously, wider aperture lenses are possible with smaller sensors. Maybe I guessed correctly.

I still have not seen any superzoom camera yet that can deliver the image quality of the F717. I sure would like to see proof that a more modern camera will deliver what I want. I want to upgrade, not just spend money on new.

We were planning to be in Houston, Texas, in a few days, but those plans have been rescheduled until March. Houston Camera Exchange has both the V-Lux 4 and FZ200 in stock, so comparisons could be made first hand, provided they'd permit me to take pics with both cameras.
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Old Jan 5, 2013, 11:29 PM   #14
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Simon, thanks for the links to photos. Quick take looks like they have what I want. However, my wife says I've been online too much already. She's correct.

I also belong to a sport fishing forum. Weather here has been cold and rainy. Posts have been coming fast and furious, since nobody can get outdoors.

I'll go through the links to pics soon.

Have a great weekend or what's left of it.
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Old Jan 6, 2013, 7:58 PM   #15
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It would be a difficult thing to do unless you were able to exactly duplicate shots wouldn't it? That is why I hesitated so long before buying my FZ200. The pictures you posted were very nice and clear. What i am finding is that the FZ200 seems to perform very well in good lighting. In poor lighting things do get a little soft, but that is true with my Nikon D90 also. I will post a picture I took of my grandaughter that I think is pretty clear. The light was going fast, but I am pretty happy with this picture.

On another subject, do you have a simple explanation how the intillegent zoom works. Can you get a better picture shooting at 600 and croping or is it better to go to the 1200 zoom. I have mixed results both ways.
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Old Jan 7, 2013, 1:32 AM   #16
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dpmonk, could you post an HR of the photo to Flickr. Looks like hair strands to compare, so I'd like to see it full res. Thanks.
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Old Jan 7, 2013, 1:51 AM   #17
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Here's some various FZ200 images on a Flickr set And a portrait...


Certainly, the pic of Rudy's wife shows great detail!

The rest in the larger folder run the gamut. Most look good but I didn't see that many tack sharp pics. I wish that Rudy had not blurred out the eyes (and eyelashes) on many people. Maybe in Canada, that is required; however, in the US, if photos are taken in a public place, they are no longer considered private.

Also, I love to see the facial lines that have been imprinted by the course of events that we all have experienced throughout the years of our lives. In the pictures of my friends and family, I wanted to show them as they were at that time, which moment will never be identical, ever. That's what I enjoy most about doing pictures of people.

The lady with the pine branches in my previous post is my wife.

I suppose that retouching and airbrushing is appropriate for pinup gals and adolescents with acne blemishes. But even then, it would not be true.
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Old Jan 7, 2013, 10:50 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by dpmonk View Post
... What i am finding is that the FZ200 seems to perform very well in good lighting. ...

On another subject, do you have a simple explanation how the intillegent zoom works. Can you get a better picture shooting at 600 and croping or is it better to go to the 1200 zoom. I have mixed results both ways.
I believe that most new cameras will perform very well in good lighting. The challenge is to perform well in poor lighting, which many cameras fail to. I don't have the FZ200 but I've had many cameras with iZoom and none performed that well. To begin with, in order to avoid blurred images due to camera shake, the shutter speed would have to be set so high (if you follow the 1/FL rule-of-thumb - in this case, 1/1200) that for sure you'd need a lot of light. The 1200 magnification almost asks for a tripod if you don't have very steady hands. Also, the diffraction caused by the long zoom most likely will produce soft images, lacking contrast and color saturation. So, personally I think you'll be better off shooting at 600 and then cropping.
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Old Jan 7, 2013, 1:57 PM   #19
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I only have an old FZ7 but when I first got it,I checked out what they called digital zoom (is that what they now call intelligent zoom ?).
The FZ7 has a 12 times zoom = 420 mm, which digital zoom extends. So I took a pic of a car in the distance at 420mm then one at the extended zoom = around 600mm and cropped the 420mm to the same size and both images were the same under close inspection, as to be expected .I would expect the FZ200 to be the same, surely it's only a type of in camera cropping.
One thing I have found is that you are better getting in closer if possible than cropping with any camera/ lens I've owned.
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Old Jan 7, 2013, 2:40 PM   #20
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One thing I have found is that you are better getting in closer if possible than cropping with any camera/ lens I've owned.
That's very true as long as the camera can resolve a lot of details at the long end of the zoom otherwise you may be better off cropping.
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