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Old May 31, 2009, 3:51 PM   #1
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I am in the market for a new digital camera, my choices so far are the Canon SX10iS the SX1iS or the Panasonic FZ28. I would like to put a good flash unit in order to get good low light pictures even when I will be using the zoom indoors. Movies are not a great priority that is why I was leaning more for the SX10iS sort of save money on the camera spend more for the flash. But if the SX1iS is that much better I will go for that or the Panasonic FZ 28. This is a question for Sarah because she seems to like the Panasonic a lot, do you use a flash for low light situations and if not, are the pictures good with just the built in flash. By the way any other camera I should be looking at. Thank you lou.
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Old May 31, 2009, 6:54 PM   #2
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The Canon SX-1 is more expensive and it has IQ problems of it own especially in low light level environments. Take a few minutes and check the professional reviews. I believe that the SX-10 would be the better choice, it has a hot shoe and it is best paired with the Canon EX-430 flash.

The Panasonic FZ-28 does not have a hot shoe so you would have to get a slave flash that fires when it "sees" the FZ-28's built-in flash fire. The Digislave 3000 is a good slave flash whose hear swivels and tilts.

Both the SX-10 and the FZ-28 will do well in a low light level situation, as they are capable of better than average photos at an ISO setting of 800.

But the Canon SX-10 camera and flash combo will force you into an outlay of more than $(US) 600.00 That makes it wise to consider the consumer level DSL cameras as well. If you need that long zoom then the SX-10 wins.

The Panasonic package will cost roughly $(US) 400.00, including the slave flash.

If you don't need that long zoom the Pentax KM-2000 package includes the camera body, the kit lens, and an non tilting external flash that is good out to about 30 feet, for about $(US) 500.00 You can get the Pentax 50-200mm lens (75mm to 300mm on 35mm terms) for around $(US) 200.00. That would get you a DSLR camera with much greater/better low light capability, much better IQ, and with 10X optical zoom at a price that is just about $(US) 50 to 60 more than the Canon SX-10 kit. The Pentax KM-2000 package is less expensive than the Canon SX-1 package. In fairness, it is something to consider.

And the KM-2000 camera is about the same physical size as the SX-1 or SX-10.

Sarah Joyce

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Old May 31, 2009, 10:01 PM   #3
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Sarah's recommendation of the Pentax K2000 sounds very good, at first. It would certainly be MUCH better than a point and shoot with a small sensor, but there might be some irritating issues with the Pentax that would sour your experience down the road.

You can read Steve's review of the Pentax here. And, you can read the DPR review here. One very attractive point about a Pentax K2000 is that it is "compatible with every Pentax lens ever made", as stated in Steve's review. The DPR reviewer was not happy with the JPEG engine results, the lack of orientation of the sensor (portrait orientation must be manually rotated), and the Auto focus feature does not show you which of the five focus points it is using. These may or may not be issues for you, but they would be for me. I have not made switch to a DSLR yet, and these are some of the issues I will look at when my time comes.

Dennis
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Old Jun 1, 2009, 12:47 AM   #4
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Dennis-

Yes, I did my share of reading about the Pentax KM-2000 as well. And at first glace they seem to contradict each to some degree. Bu then I had a chance to use a KM-2000 for 14 days, and through hands on experience, I found the jpeg allegation to be completely bogus. And I also determined through personal experience that photo orientation was not that big a deal. Now, I will also admit that I had even further motivation. I was able to purchase an "open box" KM-2000 and saved an additional $(US) 125.00. I ended up paying just $(US) 375.00 for the whole kit.

My net cost on the KM-2000 kit, which includes an external flash (one of the OP's requirements) was less than the cost of some point and shoot cameras. The immediate improvement in IQ was very evident, as was the ability to shoot at higher ISO settings, due to the camera's very seriously larger imager were huge improvements. To me it was win-win all the way around.

Sarah Joyce
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