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Old Jul 11, 2008, 11:34 AM   #1
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A few years ago I bought my wife a Panasonic FZ5 and she has gotten alot of enjoyment out of it. Recently, she has wanted an upgrade so that she can print out larger size prints without all the noise that the FZ5 pics exhibit.

The Panasonic was her first digital camera, as she used a Canon AE-1 before. She tends to use the fz5 in P&S mode mostly, with the occasional setting change to B&W or sepia. I was looking at the FZ50 (since she has occasionally wanted the ability to use manual focus) as an upgrade to the FZ5, but for a small budget increase, I could also get her a Sony A200 DSLR with a 2 lens kit. The Sony looks like it would be a decent choice for someone going from a P&S and looking to learn the ins and outs of a DSLR.

She likes to take outdoor pictures and pics of the kids doing various activities in the youth group they belong to. Which camera do you guys think I should be looking at? Is the FZ50 a decent upgrade from the FZ5, or would a starter DSLR give consistently better resutls? TIA.
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Old Jul 11, 2008, 11:59 AM   #2
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The Sony. IMO (and I'm probably biased since I shoot with a Sony A700 now), the A200 has the best "bang for the puck" (cost/performance ratio) of any entry level dSLR model.

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Old Jul 11, 2008, 2:28 PM   #3
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MLoot wrote:
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A few years ago I bought my wife a Panasonic FZ5 and she has gotten alot of enjoyment out of it. Recently, she has wanted an upgrade so that she can print out larger size prints without all the noise that the FZ5 pics exhibit.

The Panasonic was her first digital camera, as she used a Canon AE-1 before. She tends to use the fz5 in P&S mode mostly, with the occasional setting change to B&W or sepia. I was looking at the FZ50 (since she has occasionally wanted the ability to use manual focus) as an upgrade to the FZ5, but for a small budget increase, I could also get her a Sony A200 DSLR with a 2 lens kit. The Sony looks like it would be a decent choice for someone going from a P&S and looking to learn the ins and outs of a DSLR.

She likes to take outdoor pictures and pics of the kids doing various activities in the youth group they belong to. Which camera do you guys think I should be looking at? Is the FZ50 a decent upgrade from the FZ5, or would a starter DSLR give consistently better resutls? TIA.

I have a Panasonic FZ20 I'd let go for $300. Bought it for $550 from Ritz Outlet brand new just a year ago. I dropped my FZ5 and broke it (DOUGH!) and some half rate online retailer who has since shut down didn't want to honor the extra 50 dollar warranty I bought.

Give me until the weekend to get back to my parents house and I can throw in the box and all manuals, 2 batteries, 2 chargers, neck strap...all the accessories that came or I bought with it.

Say $325 shipped for everything? I think I also have a raynox telephoto lens you can thread on to the end of the camera that extends the 12x zoom out even further. Pm me for details if you're interested. Great little camera with a ton of "DSLR - like" Features without the compact size of a high end point and shoot. It also does have the ability to focus manually, which I tend to use a lot for macro shots.

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/spec...ic_dmcfz20.asp

And to be fair the Sony A200 leads the top of my list and I'm in the search for an entry level DSLR.

Hints trying to sell the FZ20




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Old Jul 11, 2008, 4:36 PM   #4
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I had the FZ30 for a month and disliked all the extra noise (my previous camera was a Sony F717)- your FZ5 is a very nice camera and I'm not convinced the FZ50 would be that big of an upgrade. I ended up opting for a dSLR and have been much happier so I'd opt for the Sony (though I shoot Pentax and love it).

Would it consistently give better results? Since your wife has SLR experience, probably. For someone without SLR experience, it depends on whether they are willing to invest the time to learn basic photography principles and how to apply them.In your case, itreally depends on whether she's willing to trade the convenience of the smaller camera for the extra quality she can get with a dSLR and all of it's accessories (and whether she's willing to spend the extra money that you end up spending when you buy a dSLR). There's no right answer to that question, just personal opinion/needs and everyone is different.
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Old Jul 11, 2008, 8:47 PM   #5
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Thanks for all the input, guys. It looks like for $600 I can get either a Sony A200 or Olympus E-510 (both with a 2 lens kit). This should cover most shooting opportunities while my wife learns all about using a DSLR. We'll most likely keep the FZ5 for when convnenience is more important. I appreciate all your help.
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