Steve's Digicams Forums

Steve's Digicams Forums (
-   What Camera Should I Buy? (
-   -   Choosing A: Ultracompact with VGA movie rec capabilities. (

tphss Jul 8, 2005 6:58 AM

Hi all,

I'm in the process of buying 2 new ultracompact cameras.
As the title says a VGA 640x480 video shooting mode is a MUST (ofcourse, with sound).
I've decided to go with one of these: Fujifilm Z1 - Pentax S5n - Canon SD300. These 3 I can get for around 300$.

I know the SD300 has very good image quality, and supurb shooting performance, shot-to-shot times, shutter lag, autofocus... also has an optical viewfinder.

I'm am interested to know how does the Fujifilm Z1 and the Pentax S5n compares to the Canon SD300 in shooting performance (times, start-up and all the rest) and image quality.

I can't seem to find a review that has that information, and there are no reviews for the Fuji & Pentax on Steve's.
If someone can tell me how is the battery life of each camera if would be very helpfull as well!


tphss Jul 9, 2005 6:07 AM

No one knows how does shooting performace, image quality and battery life compares between these 3 cameras?

tphss Jul 9, 2005 6:19 AM

Another thing which is very important!
Do you know if any of these 3 cameras can use the Optical Zoom WHILE shooting a movie clip?

Thanks again!

slipe Jul 9, 2005 10:33 AM

tphss wrote:

No one knows how does shooting performace, image quality and battery life compares between these 3 cameras?
Probably not unless somebody happens to own all three of them. The S5n wasn't released in the US and nobody seems to be taking up the slack with a good review. I found one European sketchy review that said performance was the same for the S5 z and n as for the S5i. I'm not sure whether that is true without any actual tests being done, but if it is the S5i isn't too great:

Typical of the little folded lens design cameras the Z1 has only f3.5 and a weak flash. They put high ISO capability on it, but their 5Mp sensor doesn't seem as good as the 6Mp on the F10 for noise at higher ISO. Jeff at DCRP isn't big on numbers and his is the only test I have seen. It seems the full autofocus shutter lag is pretty good - maybe. It has a big LCD but it is no higher in pixels than the other two. I'm a little surprised you want to use a camera in sunny Israel without a viewfinder.

The SD300 seems like a nice all-round camera.

tphss Jul 9, 2005 1:36 PM

Well, one camera is for me, the other one for a friend of mine that counts on me to buy one for him. I think i'll drop the Pentax.

I already have more professional cameras, that are also big and bulky... and I am buying the new Minolta Dynax 7D in a few months anyway.

This ultracompact camera is mostly for taking pictures of people/family and other non demanding photos, also taking video clips. and it needs to be very compact and lightweight, the firned i'm buying one of these for, she won't car much for the better image quality that most people dont usually see, or care for, she is a very stylish person, I think I will buy the Z1 for her, not sure about me.

For a matter of fact the specs that are the same or better then the SD300 on the Z1 along with the design, color and looks of the Z1 looked better to me then the SD300.. But I couldn't see any pictures taken by the Z1, the pictures I saw here in the SD300 review were very good.

So I really need to decide, I hate slow cameras that have long start-up times, long lag time, long autofocus time, long pic-to-pic time and long time to store pictures.
For a fact, I know the SD300 is blitzing fast, I just want to make sure the Z1 doesn't fall much behind of the performance.

So if you can be any further assistance i'll much appriciate it! I have to purchase both cameras tomorrow!



Also, do you happen to know if any of these cameras can use their zoom while recording a movie clip?

The SD400 is also an option (it's nearly identical to the SD300, but it's 5MP).
And for me, the Casio EX-Z750 can also be an option.

Any of the cameras I have mentioned in this thread can use their optical zoom while recording a movie?

slipe Jul 9, 2005 2:54 PM

tphss wrote:

Any of the cameras I have mentioned in this thread can use their optical zoom while recording a movie?

I don't think any of those can use optical zoom during movies. It causes a lot of noise in the movies and most makers don't enable it. You can probably use digital zoom, but you likely know better than that.

I have a Z750 and really like it. It does everything very well and the control setup is excellent. It can't use the optical zoom in movie mode either.

Two caveats for the Z750:
- If you wear glasses for distance vision the small viewfinder might not be very useable as it has no diopter correction. No problem for contacts or normal vision though.
- A lot of people have had problems with lens errors from having the lens try to extend in a pocket or tight case. They usually get it sorted out, but it is something you have to pay attention to. Many people carry it with audio record mode selected on the mode dial so it won't try to extend the lens if it is accidentally turned on.

The past movie mode is a great feature I will miss if I ever get another camera with quality movies that doesn't have that feature. This is my 5th digital camera but the first I have used the movie mode on other than just test them. 640 X 480 at 30fps is quite good quality. And the Z750 does a good job with the movies.

I don't regret getting the camera and wouldn't trade it for any pocket camera on the market. But I don't think it is for everybody. With your photographic experience you would appreciate all of the controls and features.

turbodub_6 Jul 9, 2005 3:12 PM

I don't own a Fujifim Z1, but I looked at that camera pretty seriously when I was looking for my new digital camera. Having played with the Z1 for a considerable amount of time at BestBuy, I found it very quick; noticeably quicker than the Pentax s5z.

tphss Jul 9, 2005 3:30 PM

Thank you all.

I will wait untill tomorrow afternoon for maybe more people to reply and maybe give more information, after that i'll have to decide already. :O
For sure i'll update here after my purchases!

I think what I hate most is that I find out things (that are not for my liking..) after I purchase something... and then I regret.
That's why I want to get all the information I can :)

dottcomm1 Jul 9, 2005 10:14 PM

please post what you decide to get. i'm in the same boat wracking my brain! thanks!

tphss Jul 12, 2005 12:23 PM

I have purchased 2 x Canon SD300 cameras!

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 6:41 PM.