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Old Jul 19, 2005, 12:26 PM   #1
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i am having some serious problems deciding on a camera. i was set on the z750, but then i read somethings like not very good image/movie quality, low-res lcd screen and common lens errors. the v550 looks really good, everybody says that it takes very good pictures and video, plus it can zoom during video, but it has short battery life and no manual controls. also i've heard that you'll need a high-speed sd card to be able to take video with it. i already have a 1gb sd card, so it would really suck to have to spend another $100 on a high-speed 1gb.

which camera should i get? image and video quality are number one for me, they have to take very good pictures and videos. i'd like the movie mode to be vga with 30fps for the whole memory card. i really want some manual controls like my f700 had, but if it takes good pictures on auto or the scene-selection, i guess i could live without it. long battery life is pretty important to me. my f700 had a short battery life so i was left camera-less for some shots. i will mainly be using it for action shots and nature/scenery. i don't shoot inside often, but when i do, i'd like it to be able to take nice shots without a tripod. my f700 took HORRIBLE shots inside, to the point where i'd have to raise the iso to 800 and it had a lot of noise and whatnot. i really don't want to have to install any software to use the camera. i just want to be able to connect the camera and drag/drop the pics to my hard drive. compatability with linux is a big plus. the spending limit is around $400, though i can go over if i really have to. if there are any other camera's you'd recomend for me, i'm all ears.

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Old Jul 27, 2005, 1:30 PM   #2
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Have you considered the Fujifilm F10? Great for low light but you must use their adapter gizmo to download to your computer. Something of an annoyance. No optical viewfinder but a huge LCD. Good luck. Sam
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Old Oct 1, 2005, 9:53 AM   #3
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Check out this short review. Besides high ISO capability, the noise level on the F10 is remarkable, more in league with the SLR than the point and shoot.
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Old Oct 2, 2005, 7:28 AM   #4
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Have you considered the Fujifilm F11, everything that the F10 has plus these improved features:

• A (aperture priority AE) and S (shutter priority AE) modes
• Improved macro shooting mode for subjects as close as 5cm (F10: 7cm)
• Maximum sensitivity of ISO 800 in movie shooting mode, for bright & clear movies
• High-resolution 153,000-pixel 2.5-inch LCD monitor for optimum clarity and detail
• 256-zones metering enabling more precise AE for a variety of a scene.
• Improved sensitivity/ shutter speed programming for better image quality.
• Faster time required for AF in lower light condition or tele-angle.
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Old Oct 2, 2005, 3:22 PM   #5
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according to FUJI, the F11 will not be made available in the USA.

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Old Oct 2, 2005, 10:20 PM   #6
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Not sure where you read the photo quality isn't good on the Z750. The resolution is probably higher than any 7Mp pocket camera and the quality is great. Edge sharpness is better than average for a pocket camera and purple fringing is relatively low. Movies are MPEG4, so you get a lot more on the card. The movies are quite good but there are minor compression artifacts. I don't notice them on a 19 inch screen, but Steve is able to compare cameras and says they are there. He says they are bad on the V550, but owners seem to like the movies on that as well. You won't get a lens error if you carry the Z750 with the mode dial in audio. I've been carrying mine everywhere I go for over 5 months now with no lens errors. The LCD quality is fine for me, but my near vision isn't great. If I dig out a pair of reading glasses I can see the blockiness. Battery life is exceptional. The optical viewfinder wouldn't be too good for someone who wears glasses for distance vision. It is small and has no diopter correction. My only complaint about the optical finder is that it has no spot metering target.

All cameras with f2.8 to around f5 at telephoto are going to be about the same indoors with available light. The only exceptions I can think of in your price range are the Fuji F10 with its high ISO capability and the Panasonic FX9 with stabilization. Stabilization will give you better shots for still subjects with lower noise, but stabilization doesn't help for subject movement. Both are excellent cameras but point and shoot with no viewfinder.

My only knock on the V550 is the poor full autofocus shutter lag at zoom. Battery life isn't great, but that seems to be a tradeoff with the high quality LCD. The FX9 seems to have an excellent LCD as well and better battery life.

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