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Old Jun 14, 2007, 4:51 PM   #1
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Hello everyone,


I am looking for a new camera. I want a bridge camera from my Powershot A520. I have been doing research for quite some time now and just when I start leaning one way, I'll read an article that makes me question my decision.
Here's the thing, I love what the FZ8 has to offer with it's lens and RAW support. There is nothing in that range that has close to the lens quality and that supports RAW capture. Yet I don't see one site raving about the camera. Is this simply because Panasonic is new to the game and less people go out and buy these cameras or is it simply that it's direct competition in the S3/5 IS series is that much better. It seems like throngs of people buy the Canon because of the name and as a result there are many more user opinions. If one were to look at reviews and user opinions alone it would be a no brainer which camera to choose, however, I wonder if this is simply because a lot of newbies bought this camera and the pictures "seem" great to them and therefore rave about the camera.


Don't get me wrong, I have always loved Canon but it has always been because of the name and not because I knew anything about the camera. Now that I am getting more serious about improving my photography, I have begun to question the whole name thing and am really trying to get the best for my money. From what I see (empasis on I) there is no contest between these two cameras but 99.9% of the online sites would disagree. I just don't understand what makes the Canon so great. Am I missing something? Do the S3 and S5 IS models take such outstanding jpegs that RAW becomes irrelevant?


Can anyone provide any insight? Sorry for the long message.
Brad
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Old Jun 14, 2007, 6:12 PM   #2
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Boorad-

Because I own both the Canon S-2IS and the Panasonic FZ-7 I would like to share with you my feelings, since you asked for input from others.

The is no doubt that the FZ-7 and FZ-8do a much better job out of doors. It is when you switch on the built-in flash or attempt any existing light photos that things come to a screeching halt and the tide of approval changesdramatically. For Flash or existing light photos you are limited to ISO 200 or less. To go aboveISO200invites very measurablenoise.If you can deal with that restriction, then the most probably the FZ-8 will be a good "fit" for you.

The Canon S-3IS is not much better, as it has the very same problems. Its big saving grace is that it has a great video mode. Personally, I much prefer the Fuji S-700 or S-6000fd. No they do not have IS, but they do very well with both indoor and outdoor photos, ven at the higher ISO settings. The S-700 is limited realistically to 800 ISO , and the S-6000 to ISO 1600 IMO, but he results surpass both the S-3IS and the FZ-8.

I am attaching aphoto sample from the S-700 at ISO 800 taken without flash for your reference.

Sarah
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Old Jun 14, 2007, 6:43 PM   #3
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Thanks Sarah!

This helps in one sense but in another, makes me want to go back to square one and re-evaluate which camera I want to buy. Call me biased (maybe stupid) but I will have trouble buying a Fuji camera. I might need to get over that however.

Most of the time I do not like using anything above ISO 200. In fact, I try to shoot everything (even in very low light using a tripod) at 100.

Does the fact that I can shoot RAW with the FZ8 make up for any of the shortcomings with noise (throught processing)?

Thanks again.
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Old Jun 14, 2007, 7:12 PM   #4
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Booorad-

Unfortunately, I do not believe that RAW processing will steer you completely around the FZ-8's noise problems.

BTW did you know that the new Fuji F-40 and S-700 both use SD cards.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jun 16, 2007, 3:18 PM   #5
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Hi again Sarah

It looks like I might need to consider an SLR. I am just not satisfied with the image quality in a broad range of light conditions that any of compact or bridge cameras have to offer. I am currently selling a bunch of stuff on ebay so I can purchase a new camera. My budget, therefore, will be determined by how much money I get from the stuff I am selling. So, if it's okay with you, I would like to pose a two part question to you. If I am in the XTi, D40x, E-410 price range, which camera is the best (excluding lens). I plan to buy the body with a better lens. Does one of them stand out as far as the sensor goes? Secondly, if I am in the EOS 30D, D80, etc. price range which camera is the best (including lens)?

Thanks for your help! Do you think I should start a new thread with this?

Brad
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Old Jun 16, 2007, 6:00 PM   #6
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Brad-

In the 10mp range the Canon XTi is the very clear winner IMO. And I own the Nikon D-40X. I have used the XTi and believe me please, there is a big difference. Yes, I would agree that the body of the XTi feel sort of "plasticy" but you can overlook that. It simply takes great photos and the user interface with great LCD screen info is excellent.

Moving up the ladder, I would clearly opt for the Canon 30D. I own the Canon 20D and it has been great.

Sarah Joyce
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