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Old Feb 10, 2008, 2:36 AM   #1
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I am about to purchase a new camera - an upgrade from my Fuji S5700. Which by the way i am not completely unhappy with i just want to take a step up in image quality and want the benefits of RAW.Unfortunately a DSLR is out of the picture cause I cant afford one that will do what i want i.e. i need a large zoom and the cost and the weight factor ( i hike a lot in very steep country and weight is paramount). I was all set to buy the Fuji S9600 and I saw a review of the Panasonic FZ18 which did impress me. Most of my photography is outdoors between sunrise and sunset, with lots of sunsets and a number of family portrait shots and some sporting shots eg Aussie rules football and cricket action shots. Therefore my ISO is nearly always set to 64 or maybe 100. I love the look and feel of the Fuji but dont know if the pana might take better pics. I would appreciate any feedback you may have.


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Old Feb 10, 2008, 9:18 AM   #2
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The S9600 is a nice camera, but the FZ18 has a much longer telephoto reach. The Panasonics have long been cursed with poor higher ISO performance (due mainly to their use of a 1/2.5" sensor), but in your case ("Therefore my ISO is nearly always set to 64 or maybe 100."), that may not be a factor. They are both good cameras.

However, you may want to consider the newest top end Fuji P&S, the S100FS, which is due to be released this month. It has a 2/3" sensor, which is huge when compared to the Panasonic, or even the S9600 (1/1.6"). It retains the manual zoom and focus ring from the S9600 (which are great features) and adds a more powerful zoom (28-400mm), IS, high speed shooting, a host of other new features, and they claim a dynamic range similar to negative film. Take a look:

http://www.steves-digicams.com/pr/fu...s100fs_pr.html

http://www.fujifilmusa.com/digitalca...vBarId=I877242

Good luck with your choice.

the Hun


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Old Feb 10, 2008, 9:42 AM   #3
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rinniethehun wrote:
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However, you may want to consider the newest top end Fuji P&S, the S100FS, which is due to be released this month. It has a 2/3" sensor, which is huge when compared to the Panasonic, or even the S9600 (1/1.6"). It retains the manual zoom and focus ring from the S9600 (which are great features) and adds a more powerful zoom (28-400mm), IS, high speed shooting, a host of other new features, and they claim a dynamic range similar to negative film. Take a look:
That's a good looking camera, Rinnie. I'm glad to see it because I wasn't pleased with the s8000's replacing the outstanding s6000. I thought Fuji dropped some of the best features of the s6000 (particularly manual zoom) when they pulled it out of the line. This one looks like it has kept most of the best features and improved upon them.

Paul
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Old Feb 10, 2008, 11:20 AM   #4
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Cursed?? Like no other cameras in the Panasonic class have a similar sized sensor or high ISO noise issues?

It is obvious that some people are pro one brand and anti others. All you have to do is research their posts.

For a value priced feature packed camera the FZ18 is hard to beat.

Sure the newly introduced Fuji is an appealing camera with it's larger sensor but at a much higher price. Also you might want to check on it's size and weight.

Go to the Panasonic forum and see what other people are doing with their FZ18s. It is not a perfect camera but for now it is pretty much the class of the superzooms.
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Old Feb 10, 2008, 12:10 PM   #5
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"Like no other cameras in the Panasonic class have a similar sized sensor or high ISO noise issues?"

There are others, however the OP was looking for feedback between the Fuji and the Panasonic, not other brands or models.

" It is obvious that some people are pro one brand and anti others. All you have to do is research their posts."

And you are obviously one of those.

"It is not a perfect camera but for now it is pretty much the class of the superzooms."

I'm really surprised you admitted it's not perfect.

the Hun

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Old Feb 11, 2008, 1:00 AM   #6
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I own the s9600 and in my opinion it is much better than the Panasonic for night time shooting. However, the s9600 does not have image stabilization which can cause image blur at times. The deciding factor for me was that the Fuji used standard AA batteries and CF cards, which I already had. For a side by side comparision between the s9500 and the Fuji FZ-30 check out dpreview here: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/fujifilms9000/
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Old Feb 11, 2008, 11:44 AM   #7
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The Hun loves nothing more than to prove he is right. I have no ax to grind one way or the other as to camera brands, but I do have an ax to grind with his argumentative style. For some reason he disses Panasonic a lot. I have a Panasonic FZ8 and really like it but it certainly is not the perfect camera. All cameras are compromises otherwise we would all be shooting with the same brand and model.

Here is a review of the FZ18 http://www.digicamhelp.com/camera-logs/9/index.php

Image stabalization is really nice and even Fuji is going that way. Small sensors are mostly a problem at low light or high ISOs but if most of your photos are taken outdoors during daylight and you want a light camera with a long zoom then the FZ18 might be the ticket. At it's price point it is really hard to beat.

Hun, I will give you the last word, because regardless of how many times someone who disagrees with you posts, you will always be plus one!
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Old Feb 11, 2008, 12:20 PM   #8
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"The Hun loves nothing more than to prove he is right"

It's a lot easier to prove you wrong. Nice web site...Gail's Digital Photography Blogs... Great FZ18 article...make sure you read page 14:

http://www.digicamhelp.com/camera-lo...z18-issues.php

Blue banding, noise, yellow splotching...wow, it's even worse than I thought. I like Panasonics new fix for the blue banding - send the FZ18 in for repair.

"...but I do have an ax to grind with his argumentative style."

The OP asked for feedback. I provided some. You were the one starting the argument, wolfie...

"Cursed?? Like no other cameras in the Panasonic class have a similar sized sensor or high ISO noise issues?"

"It is obvious that some people are pro one brand and anti others. All you have to do is research their posts."

Pannyman to the rescue - attacking all who might criticize the wonderful FZ18. C'mon dude, even your beloved Gail has issues with the noise. Why do you pretend that there is no noise issue with Panasonic cameras? Why do you attack anyone who dares to point that fact out to a potential buyer?

I thought you had better things to do than argue with me?

the Hun



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Old Feb 12, 2008, 6:05 AM   #9
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Thanks guys ... i dont know whats more enlightening, the info or the banter lol.

I do appreciate it all tho and I am fast coming to the conclusion that the best camera is probably going to be the one i learn to use properly. I hav read nearly all the reviews on the net and am still fairly confused as to which camera is "better". The one thing i hav noticed tho is that if you look around the user forums on the net for these particular cameras u can find some pretty amazing pics for BOTH cameras and some pretty ordinary ones too. I have seen some that would nearly rival DSLR photos so it just goes to show i guess that if u take the picture properly u will be happy. I do prefer the S9600 asthetically so i am probably going to go down that path.

Thank u all for ur help as i said i do really appreciate it :-)
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