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Old Jan 28, 2008, 11:14 AM   #1
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Hello all,

I am fairly new to digital camera's and new to this site. I currently have a HP R507, which is ok, but I cannot get the shots I want.

I am currently looking at a new camera, but don't have the budget for an SLR. Therefore I am looking at bridge camera's.

I have been looking at the Panasonic FZ18 and the Canon S5 iS.


Both seem good cameras, however, I will be using it for taking motorsport pictures (hence the zoom) at tracks and also indoor shows, where maybe light could be a problem. The subjects at indoor shows would 99% of the time be static.

Could anyone recommend the best camera for the job please?


I have read the reviews on here and cannot seem to determine which would be best for my needs.

Any help appreciated.

Cheers
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Old Jan 28, 2008, 5:11 PM   #2
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Either will do just fine for outdoor daylight motorsports. Indoor shows will depend on the exhibition hall. Our local new car autoshow (Quad Cities Autoshow held each FEB) is held in a very well lit exhibition hall (River Center, Davenport, IA) and there is plenty of light for almost any newer digital camera (I use my Kodak Z612 and my son uses his Kodak C533) without jacking up the ISO unreasonably. It would a fairly easy task for either of the cameras you mention. BUT, the lighting quality in exhibition halls vary considerably. The rest of the shows in this area are outdoors in the summertime.

I'd pick the camera that felt the best in my hands and had the most logical (to me) menu structure.


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Old Jan 28, 2008, 5:32 PM   #3
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The indoor shots are going to be the tough ones... (pretty much the case with any P&S... in my opinon)

I've used my S5 IS at the drag strip... haven't tried circle or road course...

These were taking with IS set to Panning...







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Old Jan 29, 2008, 3:18 AM   #4
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Many Thanks for your replies.

I've never been able to get a good picture from the indoor shows that I go to with my current camera. If I have the flash on the picture comes out too dark, and if I have the flash off it comes out blurred. The only way I can get a half decent image in aperture priority and the EV turned up a bit.

If I can get shots like that outdoors then I would be very happy. Very good pictures, thanks for showing me what can be done.

Does anyone know if they have a continuous focus, so if a car is coming towards you it will be in focus when you take the picture? Don't know if such things exist on these type of cameras but I did hear that the S5 may have.

Many Thanks for everyones help and advice.
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Old Jan 29, 2008, 7:01 AM   #5
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I think you'll find that indoor car shows are going to be tough unless you do step up to an DSLR... I personally have not tried using my S5 indoor for something like that... perhaps some other folks can comment on that...

But my feeling is if you are looking for high quality indoor shots you'll need the DSLR...

As a side note.. I decided this year I was going to get serious about my automotive shooting... so i've invest in a couple new lens for my 20D.... I tried out my 17-40L last week at the Detroit Auto Show...






Can't wait for Spring and for the tracks to open!!!
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Old Jan 29, 2008, 10:13 AM   #6
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Many thanks Mr_Saginaw.

The photo's you took look fantastic. They are the type of events that I will be attending. Unfortunatly i do not have the budget for a DSLR. Maybe in a few years time I will get one.

At the moment I am trying to get the best all-rounder for my needs. I guess the canon may be better in low light because of the hot shoe capability allowing for a better flash to lighten the image rather than high ISO which would cause noise, i suspect!

Does anyone have experience of these cameras in low light?

Many Thanks

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Old Jan 30, 2008, 1:02 PM   #7
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I am not going to argue that a P&S is equal to a DSLR but I believe you can get pleasing photo at auto shows with either the S5 or the FZ18. I try to use avalable light where it is feasible. My rationale is the exhibitors have generally spent some time arranginglighting already, especially for feature cars, and I like to take advantage of their efforts rather than simply overpowering their efforts with flash. The pictures following were taken at the previously mention QC AutoShow with my Z612 during the second month I owned that camera. EXIF data is included.
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Old Jan 30, 2008, 1:04 PM   #8
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Full car
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Old Jan 30, 2008, 1:05 PM   #9
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Again
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Old Jan 30, 2008, 1:08 PM   #10
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I'm not dogmatic about not using flash. As I am as interested in the mechanical bits as the styling I will use flash to illuminate those pieces when required.
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