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-   -   ultrazoom with excellent image quality (

garwink Mar 31, 2007 2:24 AM

I need to buy an ultrazoom camera until 10-15th April.

I'd buy the H9 without thinking, but it seems that it won't arrive until end of April.

So the H5 which got great reviews about its image quality is an option.

Also the Panasonic FZ8, but I am still not sure about the noise. Some people say that there is still a lot of noise compared to the h5, some reviews say that it noise isn't a big problem with the FZ8 anymore.

I'd consider the Kodak Z712 if it ships anytime soon too, but like with the H9 the release date is unknown.

Does anyone have any ideas? How is the image quality of the FZ8 compared to the H5?

Here are things which are important:

- good image quality, no(low) noise, good colors
- doesn't use XD cards
- image stabilization
- acceptable indoor pictures

I don't need to take videos with the digital camera.

thanks for any advise!

rinniethehun Mar 31, 2007 9:05 AM

the Hun

garwink Mar 31, 2007 10:51 AM

thanks for the links. I saw them and while I'd like to trust pictures of lesnumeriques, they are shot in Auto Mode at low light. The H5 beat any other camera which I compared it with.

Even the A100 DSLR

So I am not sure how much I should rely on this site for low light performance.

Greg Chappell Mar 31, 2007 11:28 AM

Sounds to me like you need a Nikon D40x and the two cheapest kit lenses Nikon makes. The performance will be what you want and image quality won't be compromised.

There a comes a point where,if youset your listof expectations high enough (which is what you've done)that none of the digicam models are gonna meet every check mark,and your list of requirementsis going to lead you down a path of disappointment in the end. I've not seen one digicam yet with a combination of featuresthat (1)exhibited no(low) noise at any setting above ISO 200, (2)has image stabilizationAND (3)didn't used xd cards. You've obviously marked off the list a couple of cameras that come closest to what you want in terms of image quality in the Fuji F30 and S6000fd, but they use xd cards... the biggest weak point, but people who use the F30 seem to "get by". Guess it depends on which is more important, how fast the card is, or how good the pictures look. I know which way I'd go.

I am glad to see someone else say they don't care about video quality on one of these type cameras. If you really are a movie buff and want the type quality that you'll be happy to watch years from now, you need to be shooting movies with a dedicated movie camera.

In the end you are going to have to compromise some part ofthe standard you are looking for in a digicam, because that model doesn't exist,or be prepared to find nothing you'll like.

Justinian Mar 31, 2007 11:40 AM

For low light performance, you can't beat the Fujifilm Finepix S6000fd (although it does not have image stabilization and uses xD memory cards). The Panasonic Lumix TZ3 has also received very positive reviews as Panasonic seems to have addressed the noise issue in this model by using a new and larger sensor - Venus III. If you want manual controls and don't care about camera size, the Fuji S6000fd will suit your needs nicely. If you want the portability that a compact UZ offers, then the TZ3 will do. I was in your position until yesterday, when I finally decided on the TZ3, based on professional and consumer reviews, size and the fact that it has image stabilization and uses SD cards. Review links below for each model may help you.
Fuji S6000fd:
Panasonic Lumix TZ3:

mtclimber Apr 1, 2007 11:53 AM


Thanks for the excellent post. I happen to agree with you that the Panasonic TZ-3 has a lot going for it. I would love to see some sample photos when you receive your new TZ-3. Thanks.


garwink Apr 4, 2007 1:57 AM

I was considering a DSLR(D40,D80...), but the cost of the lens would make the package too high.

The TZ3 is interresting and I might consider replacing my SD500 with it before summer. I am waiting for the W200 from Sony to come out since it got a bigger CCD even if 12 MP is a turn off. At the end it will be between TZ3, T100 and W200.

I need to take animal photos so I'd like a bigger zoom than the TZ3 for my second camera. I'd take the Fuji, but I really need image stabilization.

There are only few full samples of the FZ8 which I could find, but I might go with it.

Shahmatt Apr 4, 2007 4:26 AM

The lack of image stabilization for the Fuji is not really a problem. The camera has a nice weight which is stabilizing in itself, and the high ISO quality is perfect for low-light problems as well as counters any stabilization issues. You also might find the manual zoom lens useful. You should seriously consider it.

flippedgazelle Apr 4, 2007 10:00 AM


Thanks for the excellent post. I happen to agree with you that the Panasonic TZ-3 has a lot going for it. I would love to see some sample photos when you receive your new TZ-3. Thanks.
Sarah, I also had high hopes for the TZ3, but alas! the NR bug yet again smites (but not fatally) another worthy Panny entry.

I guess I won't be giving up my lovely Fuji S6000fd just yet... until I check out the Sony H7/H9 !

- Chris

mtclimber Apr 4, 2007 10:27 AM

Hello Chris-

Yes, you are correct, regarding the Panasonic TZ-3. The concept is great. However, the execution, due to the very heavy noise reduction is flawed. Just like a lot of other folks, I had been very hopeful for the TZ-3.


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