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stevetracey Mar 21, 2006 1:34 PM

I've read all the reviews and everthing that you have all posted on this forum about the FZ30.

I STILL CAN'T MAKE MY MIND UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have a FZ20 which I've had for the last 15 months. What a great camera!

I am now thinking of changing it for the FZ30, seeing there doesn't seem to be any announcement of a FZ40. But is it really worth it?

I've got the raynox DCR-1540 telephoto and the DCR-150 & 250 macro lens for the 20.

I know the macro lenses will fit the FZ30 but the telephoto won't. So it means I will need to buy a new telephoto lens as well.

I'd like to hear from FZ20 users who have upgraded to the 30.

Do you think it was worth doing? The 20 is a great camera, but do you really see a difference in using the 30.

I'm on the edge of buying the FZ30, but just need that reassurance.

Please help, I'm sure I'm not the only FZ20 user in the same this position.

Please HELP!!!!!!

fmoore Mar 21, 2006 1:54 PM

I don't have the fz30 (fz5 is more my style) but I'll give you my $.02 anyway. The fz40 (if there is one) probably wouldn't be announced until July (fz30 was announced last July)so don't totally give up on that possibility. I would certainly expect the dcr1540 to work well with any fz series. You would just need a 55-52mm step down ring with the fz30. I'd wait another couple of monthsto see what might be in the pipe line.

digcamfan Mar 21, 2006 1:59 PM

I had an FZ20 for a short time and sold it on Ebay.

I then bought an FZ30.

I find it better for me than FZ20 for at least one big reason:

Zoom is all done internally. Lens barrel on FZ30 is fixed.

There are lots more reasons but that is one reason for me!

Corpsy Mar 21, 2006 4:40 PM

I only owned the FZ30, but if I had the FZ20 I'd probably keep it. The question is, after all the research you've done, do you think the minor upgrades the FZ30 offer are really worth nearly $600? More when you add the cost of another telephoto.

I think if I were in your position, I'd probably put the money towards something that's either significantly better (ie wait for the FZ40), or a camera that fills a different niche. Both the FZ20 and FZ30 are great all purpose cameras, but both are pretty weak in low light situations, particularly indoors with people. I'd probably consider getting a cheap DSLR like the Konica 5D to use in those situations and keep the FZ20 for outdoor stuff. The nice thing about that route is that if you want to pursue the more professional photography later on, you can put your next investment into lenses for the SLR rather than another replacement camera.

genece Mar 21, 2006 4:54 PM

I upgraded to the FZ30 while I had a FZ10 and 20... and I would do it again.

The FZ30 is a much improved camera.....the low light capability has not improved much but the camera is great.....and the Raynox lens should work better on the FZ30.

Just my slant on it.

KENNETHD Mar 21, 2006 6:06 PM

I debated buying the FZ 20. It was a hard thing to say no. I bought the FZ 30. I had experimented with the FZ 20 quite a few times. I liked it but am glad I bought the FZ 30. I like so many things about it it would take a page to list them all. I also find that the more I use it, the better pics I'm getting. (Ya, I know. d u h h h h ! ) Very nice camera.


squirl033 Mar 21, 2006 7:00 PM

i've had an FZ20 since November of '04. when the '30 was announced, i looked at the features, considered the relative value of the new bits and whistles, and decided it wasn't worth my money and the hassle involved to "upgrade". from what i can tell, the '30 does not give you any better pictures, just bigger ones. it is an incremental improvement on the FZ20, and even then only in terms of some handling features and tricksy capabilities. if i'm going to spend money upgrading my equipment, it's going to be for something that will really BE an upgrade, and will give me a noticeable, dramatic improvement over what i can get from my FZ20. those who follow my posts know i've recently ordered a Canon 30D for just that reason.

my 2 cents? keep the FZ20, and when you do decide to move up, really move up. don't waste money on a half-step that you'll want to upgrade again in 6 months or a year. the FZ20 will provide image quality just as good as the '30, and if you aren't trying tomake mural-sized prints, you'll likely never see the difference, so unless the handling features are a real sticking point for you, save the money and start a cookie-jar fund to buy something that will be a real upgrade for you.

LadyhawkVA Mar 21, 2006 7:22 PM

I agree with Squirl on this one. I have the FZ20 and have never considered upgrading to the FZ30. When I upgrade it will be a true upgrade to a DSLR.

Timewarp Mar 21, 2006 8:57 PM

I've been a happy owner of an FZ20 since 12/04. When the FZ30 came out, I was certainly tempted, but for my purposes, I couldn't find enough justification to warrant the cost of upgrading. I suppose if I could sell my FZ20 for a good price, I would consider it, but otherwise I have to agree with Squirl and Ladyhawk.

I have also been interested in trying a DSLR, but found the prices (especially for the lenses to even come close to the capabilities of the FZ's) to be prohibitive. When there didn't appear to be either an FZ40 or a reasonably priced Panasonic DSLR on the horizon, I took the plunge for an Olympus E-500 DSLR. If anyone else is interested in exploring the DSLR format at a reasonable price, you can get the E-500 with two lenses for $699 (after a $100.00 rebate). With the two lenses, it gives you about a 30mm to 300mm (35mm equivalent) range. It still won't match the range of the FZ's, but it does seem like a good way to get introduced to the DSLR world.

That's not to say that I expect the E-500 to replace my FZ20. I still expect to use both in different situations. I also expect that in a year or two, I will probably be looking for an FZ?? to upgrade my 20.

Bottom line though... only you can know if you find enough advantages in the FZ30 to warrant the upgrade at this time. Good luck in whatever you decide.

KENNETHD Mar 21, 2006 9:48 PM

Taking into account the timing, and the fact you already have the FZ 20, if it were me, I would be tempted to wait and see what happens in the next year. You already enjoy your FZ 20. Unless you think you'd like to crop more, 5 MP should be ok. On the other hand, if you want to sell the FZ 20, and put the proceeds toward an FZ 30, it might be an easier transition financially. Sometimes I buy an item because it is the latest and greatest, even if it isn't a huge leap in technology. It's just fun to own an item for your hobby. I do the same with video cards in my computer. I love seeing how fast the best they have becomes yesterday's news as another faster, more powerful card emerges. For the games and software I run, I know I don't need the absolute best video card. But I like having one. But getting back to the FZ game here. I don't know if you can find the same deal I found, where I was able to use the camera for 30 days and return it if not satisfied, no hard feelings and full refund, but it would tell you for sure whether it's a good choice for you or not. I believe the FZ 30 is a bit more refined, and has "slicker" control features...the lense barrel doesn't extend, I love the two zoom/focus rings, neat swivel lcd...there are lots of very nice things on this camera. For me it's not just all about taking the same quality pictures. Essentially the internal combustion engine still gets us around now like it did 60 years ago. But holy cow! The packaging sure is a lot neater.


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