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Old Nov 3, 2004, 9:02 AM   #1
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my local store is selling it for $179. My only concern is the 2 megs. Will this be enough. I only should 4 x 6 and occasionally a 5 x 7 and maybe an 8 x 10 out a 1000. Any opinions. Thanks
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Old Nov 3, 2004, 9:27 AM   #2
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I just ordered one, and here are my thoughts. I do not have the FZ1 yet, but I already have a 2mp camera and am happy with the resolution.

I showed my girlfriend online pictures of the same exact thing from three panasonic cameras and she picked the fz1 as the best knowing NOTHING about which one is better or cheaper etc. She especially said the colors were more vibrant and real. So, we have a $169 camera here that, to an untrained eye, beats a $350 and $600 camera. With that endorsement how could I go wrong at just more than half off the next one.

http://www.steves-digicams.com/2004_...s/p1010056.jpg -- fz20, $600.00
http://www.steves-digicams.com/2004_...s/p1010082.jpg -- fz3, $350.00
http://www.steves-digicams.com/2003_...s/P1010127.JPG -- fz1, $179 street

Since all I want is shots for the web, 3x5 and 5x7, occasional 8x10 with post processing (interpolation to higher DPI) 2mp with a stabilized 12x (35-420mm zoom on a 35mm camera) Leica lens (wow) is all I'll need for the forseeable future. High quality lens and low megapixels also saves on the card requirements.

Main limitation is one has to compose in the camera as there is little room for zooming in and cropping with photo editing software on the PC. I already compose in the viewfinder as I am a trained photographer, but this may take some adjustment and learning to really think about how you want the final shot to look before you press the button. I almost never crop, so I am not really limited by this. Also with a 12x zoom you will more rarely need to crop, heh.

So, it really depends on your composition style wether or not 2mp is enough. But 2mp through a good lens can look better than higher MP's through a crappy lens.

I am excited for mine to get here, and do not forsee me returning or exchanging it.

take care,

Jester
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Old Nov 3, 2004, 9:31 AM   #3
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A 2 megapixel image is fine for 4x6 & 5x7 prints. At 8x10 it will start to get a bit grainy as the resolution drops to about 150dpi. Just look at the pluses and minuses for the FZ1.

Pluses: 12x zoom, stabilized lens, fixed 2.8 aperature, low noise.

Minuses: only 2 megapixel, af+shoot slower than latest generation, no full manual mode (even with v2 software)

Unless you are doing sports photos that require fast focus, need to print poster sized images, or require full manual control, the FZ1 would be an excellent choice. At $179 you'd be comparing against entry level 3 megapixel cameras with 3x zoom. No comparison at all as the FZ1 is a much better camera.
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Old Nov 3, 2004, 9:32 AM   #4
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2 MP is enough for 4x6 but anything bigger than that requires interpolation.
Here is a good link: http://www.photozone.de/7Digital/digital_4.htm
If i were you i would buy the camera anyway because it has excellent price/quality ratio.
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Old Nov 3, 2004, 9:54 AM   #5
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Get the fz1 you will be amazed what 2mp can do. You can print nice 8x10's if you start from a very sharp picture. Definitely worth the money.

I crop my pictures all the time sometimes to double the subjects size and the pictures still look great from a sharp picture. This photo has been cropped double the size of the subject:




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Old Nov 3, 2004, 10:32 AM   #6
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Since I just paid $200 for mine, you probably should not buy that camera, but instead tell me where to go get it for $179 so I can return mine and save $20.

Several of my buddies want the same deal.

Seriously, have you read any reveiws?

The "Should I buy an FZ1 even though it is only 2MP" has been answered to death, here and elsewhere.

Few pics need anywhere near 2MP, but ALL shots need good optics, and most photographers would benefit from image stabilisation. Especially here in the Pacific NW, where the coffee kicks ass.

If you have a truckload of money, get a more extreme unit. If you want to get amazing results, buy an FZ1 and sharpen your skills.

Try to remember, this is NOT a $200 camera, but a really good deal on a $450 camera. Spend your dough on a case, filters, 256 or bigger high speed card and a card reader.

I really really want the underwater housing, but even Panasonic can't find a price. I am hoping it is not "Vaporware".

My next cam will be SLR, probably 12 to 15MP, probably $1500, probably 2006, maybe later.

Go buy it, use it, love it, or sell it on Ebay!
Luke
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Old Nov 3, 2004, 10:43 AM   #7
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I've recently got the FZ1 as a spare DC.
I also upgraded the firmware to control the shutter speed and aperture manually and I took some shots:

http://www.pbase.com/afukuda/fz1v2

Its a great small camera - higly recommended like the other FZs

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Old Nov 3, 2004, 12:52 PM   #8
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Okay... here I go again:

1. They're giving these things away. Yes! Buy it.
2. 70% to 90% of pics are viewed on a PC monitor. A PC monitor is 72 pixels per inch. You will throw 1/2 your pixels away with the FZ-1 to scale an image to fit within your monitor. Your will throw 3/4 of those expensive pixels away with the FZ-20.
3. It is very compact... big plus
4. Prints photoquality up to 6X4... most of what you print will probably be this size.
5. 8X10's are fine. You will notice some grain in contrast-y areas viewed at close range. Read up on upping resolution.. get yourself Genuine Fractals (100 uses trial) or Fred Miranda's "Staired Interpolation" action for Photoshop ($15), and the slight grain goes away when viewed up close. In EITHER case, the slight grain on an 8X10 disappears completely when viewed from arm's length. Again, this applies to 8X10's or larger. I have taken 2,000 pictures with the FZ-1. I've printed around 100 to 150 6X4's, I have printed 7 or 8, 8X10's. I am amazed at the quality of the 8X10's, especially those where I tested Genuine Fractals to boost pixel density. I also seem to get somewhat better results using the highest DPI settings on my photo-inkjet on larger prints, for what it's worth.


It's a great, compact, digicam with a 12X optical zoom and image stabilization with very good image quality that you can carry around anywhere. No worse than your average pocket-sized digicam as an indoor camera due to its weak flash (and the ISO limitations of most fixed-lens digitals) There are lots of inexpensive slave flash solutions for that, just make sure you get one that compensates (delays firing) for white-balance preflash, like the Vivitar DF200. IMO its size, zoom range and IS system make it a "revolutionary" underated, point-n-shoot snap-shot camera. The FZ-1 and FZ-3 are >in my opinion< the best of the line due to their compact size. FZ-1 is "the best" right now from a value standpoint because they're being virtually given away. The rest of the line, you can have (too large and you're paying for extraneous megapixels that get heaved - literally, 70% of the time or more. There are effective software work-arounds for boosting resolution when needed.)

Yes, heartily recommended!



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Old Nov 3, 2004, 1:00 PM   #9
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I crop my pictures all the time sometimes to double the subjects size and the pictures still look great from a sharp picture.

How far one can crop is, to a large degree mathematical. With 2mp you can crop and still get a good 4x6 and marginally a 5x7, but it would be awfully hard to crop half the picture then print an 8x10 which you could do with more megapixels. But for web use one can crop away!

So, we are both right, but it is a limitation to being on the edge of the resolution game. That andI dont see anything wrong with encouraging people to be better photographers

take care,

Steve
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Old Nov 3, 2004, 1:17 PM   #10
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I thank you all of you for helping me out in making this EASY decision. A currently have teh compact LC33 (3 mg) and I have been very happy and very pleased with the results. My wife carries the camera everywhere she goes so I have been looking to get myself another panasonic. I came across this model and I thought that "Am I going to be happy with the 2MG?", but I figured that for the $$$ and the quality how could I go wrong. I thank you for helping answer this question.
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