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Old Jun 5, 2005, 7:32 PM   #1
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Hi everyone
I am currently looking for a ultrazoom for both indoors and outdoors photographs. I have been following the FZ series for a long time and had decided to get a FZ-5 after deciding that Minolta was not as good as the Panasonic. But with the arrival of S2 and H1, the compition has increased somewhat, so please advise me which one to get.
Please note that all cameras are stabilized 5M with 36~432 lens(12x)

Furthermore I would rate myself as a serious amuter, I occasionally go into apperture priority and sometimes shutter priority on my film cameras, with bravely venturing into Manual mode (including manual focus) on my older Cameras.. I have used SLRs and Rangefinders

The following is what I like /dislike about all of them
Panasonic:
Likes: Excellent Lens (2.8 ~ 3.3)
Lower Price as they are around for some time
Dislikes: No Manual Focus
Limited Shutter Options (8 ~ 1/2000)
Weak Flash with no hot shoe
Propretiery Battery

Sony:
Likes: OK Lens although though not a Carl Zies (2.8 ~ 3.7)
Solid(Sturdy) Build
Larger LCD (2.5')
Slow Shutter Speeds (30 ~ 1/1000)
Dislikes: Purple Fringing
No Orientation Sensor (correct me if I am wrong)
Memory Stick

Canon:
Likes: Tiltable LCD
Good Lens (2.7 ~ 3.5)
Variety of Shutter Speeds (15 ~ 1/3200)
Dislikes: No Reviews on Net

From the above comparison please dont think that I have a bone to pick with the FZ line, in my opinion they are great cameras and I was saving for like a year to get one of those (i saved and i spent) but now when i am ready to get one, good compitition had arrived.

BTW: As this will be my first real digital camera, so I am not biased towards SD and Memory Stick, but you cant forgo the fact that Memory Stick is more expensive.
Further more as I donot live in US so I dont have an option to walk in a store and test them. Plus as I would be asking someone else to get one from me so returning is also not an option.

Thanx in advance for the help.

Awais
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Old Jun 6, 2005, 3:44 AM   #2
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Hmmm... Dilema, Dilema.. Can I ask why you aren't considering the FZ20? Particularly if two of your dislikes about the FZ5 are no hot shoe or manual focus.. I can tell you that both have made a world of difference, especially coming from a long film SLR background. If size is the issue consider that to use an external flash on the FZ5, you'll need to add a flash bracket which pretty much will kill the size advantage. Batteries aren't a problem. Lots of aftermarket ones available and the entire Lumix FZ line uses the same one.

If you need some help pushing you to the FZ,

http://photobucket.com/albums/v285/jjmel/

The Sony, My biggest objection to the sonys (without actually having tried one) is the memory stick. What else uses it?? Who makes them? While a 30 second shutter speed would be nice, I think the 1/1000 speed would be a bit limiting.. Especially if you like to do sunset shots and that sort.. I've actually gone to 1/2000 with the FZ and wished I could go further..

Canon, Again, No experience with it.. Tilt LCD would definately be nice. I've read a lot of stuff about the S1 and user reviews are mixed. So, personally, I would not want to invest in an untested camera and be one of the folks that discovers it doesn't deliver.

I would suggest you go to the Sony and Canon forums (both here and at DPREVIEW) and ask folks what they DON'T like about the cameras.. Just like the Panasonics, you'll get all kinds of folks saying "love it".. Dig through here and read some of the gripes about the panasonics (screen dim under manual control with no gain up "feature" for instance)..

IF you go the panasonic route, for indoor photos, figure on using an external flash be it with the FZ20 or the FZ5..

Good luck,
Jeff
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Old Jun 6, 2005, 5:06 AM   #3
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Even I am faced with the same dilemma. I've been watching and following the panasonic line for quite a few months now. I had earlier pretty much decided on the fz20, but decided to hold on when sony announced the dsc-h1. This was followed by the fz5 and now the canon. I decided against the fz20 because of it's comparatively high noise and also some people had said that it had a preference to give a yellow or magenta color cast in it's photos. Now, this is going to be my first camera, so I really want to focus more on learning photography rather than spending time post-processing.
The sony, as you said has problems with CA, so that pretty much rules it out for me, along with the absence of a hot-shoe. The fz5 comes really close, but once again the lack of a hot-shoe is a turn-off. And as stated earlier, there are no reviews of the canon available so far.
Although it's quite a bit higher in expected price, but I have decided to wait for the Samsung Pro815. I'm in no hurry for one and plus, it's better to wait a short while for a better product (one that I am happy and satisfied with, anyway) than to buy one and say later that I miss this or that.
Just my 2 cents!
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Old Jun 6, 2005, 12:02 PM   #4
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Check out this review

http://www.dcresource.com/reviews/so...ew/index.shtml
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Old Jun 6, 2005, 5:18 PM   #5
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Looking at that review and the specs listed at DPREVIEW, the sensor is the same size (almost) as the FZ20. Nightime noise is CLEARLY visable at higher ISOs as shown in the dcresource review. All 3 cameras will have roughly the same noise issues at ISO 400.. If that is your reasoning for not considering one or the other, you might want to look at a camera with a larger sensor..
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Old Jun 7, 2005, 2:46 AM   #6
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jsiladi wrote:
Quote:
Can I ask why you aren't considering the FZ20? Particularly if two of your dislikes about the FZ5 are no hot shoe or manual focus..
.......
The Sony, My biggest objection to the sonys (without actually having tried one) is the memory stick. What else uses it?? Who makes them? While a 30 second shutter speed would be nice, I think the 1/1000 speed would be a bit limiting.. Especially if you like to do sunset shots and that sort.. I've actually gone to 1/2000 with the FZ and wished I could go further..
.......
Canon, Again, No experience with it.. Tilt LCD would definately be nice. I've read a lot of stuff about the S1 and user reviews are mixed. So, personally, I would not want to invest in an untested camera and be one of the folks that discovers it doesn't deliver.
Jsiladi thanks foryour comments
I agree with you that Fz-20 is better of the two but it is also priced higher. With the exchange rates in my country it woud take me atleast another couple of months to save for one :-?although it was one of my first choices and I would still prefer to get one had I had the resources.
.......
I fully agree with you on the Sony issue but since as I have not yet invested in either SD or Memory Stick so that should not be problem however ther is the fact that if i choose Memory stick then my options are limited for futue upgrades.
.......
Canon's tiltable LCD is definately nice but there is still the problem of no online review so it still remains a wildcard so to say.

Any way I can wait a couple of weeks max before I have to make my decision, hopefully there would be more reviews of H1 and Canon and they would help me make the decision.

Anyway thanks again for the help
Awais
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Old Jun 7, 2005, 3:00 AM   #7
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mukul wrote:
Quote:
Although it's quite a bit higher in expected price, but I have decided to wait for the Samsung Pro815. I'm in no hurry for one and plus, it's better to wait a short while for a better product (one that I am happy and satisfied with, anyway) than to buy one and say later that I miss this or that.
Mukul i agree with you that I definately donot want to be bitter later that I missed this or that feature in the other camera. but the fact is that I have not been able to find the specs for the 815, all i could find were the intros to it and t tell you the truth they seem quite nice but with no release date or specs it is hard to wait on it. (if you know some site please guide me)

Plus it is not even mentioned in the samsung section on dpreview (correct me if i am wrong). Furthermore Samsung has not had a vast experience with electronics especially the digital camera. The optics etc are nice but you cant tell if the camera will also perform as nicely. Futher more the Samsung forum here is also quite inactive (I havnt checked dpreview yet) so it might suggest that the Samsung might not have a huge following as does Panasonic, Sony orCanon have. Lastly there is the issue of the higher price (although i have not been able to get a quote, so tell me if you know). As i noted above that higher the price, more difficult for me to buy.

Plesae dont think that i am putting the samsung down but the fact remains that you have to consider all options when making a purchase. Anyway thanks once again for the comments

Awais
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Old Jun 7, 2005, 3:12 AM   #8
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I am sorry i would like to take a couple of my word back.

I was able to find the official announcement for 815 on dpreview, but no IS..... what do thay want us to do with the ultra zoom ??? plus a price that high (estimated at 1k) why not get a DSLR in the range with a couple of good lenses....

Ok it would be nice to have manul zoom and focus like in the SLRs and large LCD but still....
Furthermore it might be the slowest lens in the catagory (2.2 ~ 4.6), a 4.6 at 420 mm beats even Sony which was the previous leader with 3.7....


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