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Old Jun 3, 2009, 2:25 PM   #1
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Default On review overload, need some help

I'm new, confused, and desperately need some help.

My Canon point and shoot recently died and it's time to replace it. I'm a camera novice and will probably stay that way. I've got four kids and we take active, but non-sports, pictures of the kids outside and indoor pictures of family get-togethers (birtday parties, etc). I want a high optical zoom--at least 10x (my wife has complained incessantly about the poor quality of digital zoom pics). Although I can't imagine actually getting prints of our pics (I honestly can't remember the last time we did), my wife insists we might and wants to be sure the image quality will be good if we do. Most importantly, we're taking the kids to Disneyland later this month and I've got to come back with good pictures.

A self taught crash course in ISO, apperature, shutter speed, etc is going to make my head explode. I've read lots of Steve's reviews, which have been helpful, but I'm stuck between a few choices. Last thing I should mention is I'm trying to stay closer to $200 but can go up to about $300. dSLR is just not an option right now. I need a smaller size and not overcomplicated. I also prefer to stay with the SD card format over Sony memory stick or others.

I'm looking at the:
--Canon SX110is: Don't like that you have to raise the flash manually and have might be concerned about ISO if I thought I actually understood it).

--Canon SX200is: Seems a big price jump to get a flash that pops up automatically, but seems otherwise the same as the 110ix.

--Panasonic DMC TZ4/5/50: These sound good, but I'm still looking for a store I can around with them, but they sound good. I've been told to go with a company that has always made cameras over a company that hasn't, but not sure if that really holds. I'm intrigued with the Wi-Fi of the TZ50, but not sure I'll have occassion to use it outside of my house.

I've only owned a Canon before, so I'm not sure how the Panasonic will hold up to use, etc.

Thanks in advance for any comments, insights anyone can offer. I know the specs for the cameras, I'm really looking for advice on quality of pictures. It seems unlikely to me that I'd be taking many (if any) pictures in low light situations without a flash, but who knows, I guess.

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Old Jun 3, 2009, 4:10 PM   #2
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I've only owned a Canon before, so I'm not sure how the Panasonic will hold up to use, etc.
The recent issue of Consumer Reports found Panasonic cameras to be the most reliable.
Panasonic FZ28
Canon A720is
Sanyo Eneloop Batteries
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Old Jun 4, 2009, 8:58 AM   #3
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The latest version of the Panasonic TZ series, the ZS3 (and ZS1) have received excellent reviews, so you might not want to overlook them.


The Canon SX200 pop-up flash is actually kind of a problem for several users reviewing it on the Canon website. The flash pops up when the camera is turned on, and you cannot put it down to leave it down. This caused several folks to wish Canon had given them the option. It also can get in the way of holding the camera. I'm also a Canon owner, but would not want this camera due to the flash popped up all the time.


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Old Jun 4, 2009, 7:07 PM   #4
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I very much appreciate the input. I've avoided even looking at the Sony's because of the proprietary memory (I've got plenty of SD cards and didn't want to buy new memory), I think the Sony DSC-H20 is the way I'm likely to go. If anyone has advice to the contrary, warnings, or further recommendations I'd still love to hear it. All in all, it just seems the Sony has had less (frankly none I could find) negative comments than either the Canon or the Panasonics.

Thanks again to all
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