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Old Jan 25, 2007, 9:23 PM   #1
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I currentlyhave twodigital cameras to choose from. (1st) Fuji Fine pix f20----(2nd)Olypmus FE-230. i am a novice at taking pics, so I don't need anything hardcore. I feel the specs of these two are sufficent for me. Which camera is the better of the two? Please explain andhelp me decide. Thanks
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Old Jan 25, 2007, 9:28 PM   #2
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Are you looking for more zoom, more exposure control, or more photo quality. Please tell us a bit more.

MT/Sarah
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Old Jan 25, 2007, 9:37 PM   #3
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Iwill favorphoto quality, exposure control, mechanical endurance, easy usage.
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Old Jan 26, 2007, 6:41 AM   #4
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I owned my Panasonic FZ-20 for about 2 weeks and found the visible noise in the high ISO settings very undesireable. So I sold the camera. I do own two other Panasonic cameras, the FZ-7 and the TZ-1, and have found that if you keep the ISO setting at ISO 200 or less, you can capture good photos without the noise problem.

However, there is another trade-off that has to be taken into consideration as well. That is that when you have the ISO setting throttled back to ISO 200 with an existing light photo, where no flash is being used, you have very slow shutter speeds. My Panasonic cameras have been very reliable.

The Olympus FE-230 was just announced yesterday (01/25/07) and will probably not be available until mid March.

Here is a sample photo taken with my FZ-7where the low ISO setting of 200 did work nicely.

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Old Jan 26, 2007, 11:26 AM   #5
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I would go for the F20. It doesn't give alot of control, but it has a bit more than the FE-230, which I think doesn't even have white balance adjustable (not even presets).

Also, while the FE-230 is a new model, and we won't really know how good it is until it's reviewed, the FE series in general hasn't gotten great reviews.

Steve recently reviewed the FE200, the current top of that line, and concluded:

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At about $249 or less, the FE-200 doesn't offer the greatest value, we suggest you take a look at other manufacturer's entry-level models before making a final decision.

http://www.steves-digicams.com/2007_...fe200_pg5.html

If you read the review though, it wasn't that bad, as it took generally good photos and had pretty good ergomnimics. The biggest complaint is that it's very slow for a camera of this type.

The FE-230 will likely be similar. It's also a 7.1 MP model, and I'd be concerned that Olympus has seemed to have more image quality problems on some of their other 7.1 MP models, some of which seem to be too noisy even at ISO 100. Some of the Stylus 7.1MP models seem to be even worse in that regard than the older 8MP Stylus 800, though I'm not sure why that would be.

If you want alot of manual controls and settings, the Olympus SP-350, while it shares the sluggishness of some of the other FE and SP models, is loaded with more controls and settings than anything else in that price range, and also has good image quality. That's probably more complicated than you would want, but I think the flaws in that case might at least be worth accepting if you want those features on a budget.

The F20 doesn't seem to have been reviewed either by any of the major reviewers, but it's very similar to the F30, which has had some of the best reviews of any camera in 2006. Really it's an F30 with a less expensive LCD, smaller battery, and less manual controls. Image quality should be the same. I'd still like to see a review on it, as I might be concerned that the smaller battery might make it too a bit sluggish. It also uses the same xD cards as the Olympus models, but the F30 is pretty peppy using those cards, so I don't think that's the only thing slowing down the Olympus cameras. What user reviews I've seen have been generally good though.

Aside from a nice wide angle, the only real advantage I see in the FE-230 over the F20 might be that it's a bit slimmer and more stylish. But if you want someting slim and stylish, you might want to compare to the recently announced Fuji Z5 (or even the older Z3).

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