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Old Nov 7, 2009, 10:24 AM   #1
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Default Is the Pentax k-x $300 better then the Panasonic FZ35/38 ?

I understand that a DSLR is better in low light, for fast action sports, and in less then optimal indoor conditions.....I'm comparing these two becuase the Pentax is the lowest price DSLR that shoots HD and the Panasonic FZ35 seems to be one of the better P/S superzooms that shoots in HD as well and has a real good pedigree with IQ....My picture taking would mostly be outdoors and family gatherings in the home....So, my question is....is it worth the extra $300 to go the Pentax route ? (could be more when you add on lenses in the future)
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Old Nov 7, 2009, 10:52 AM   #2
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If you can do everything you want with an FZ35, then no.

But the KX is capable of much more.
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Old Nov 7, 2009, 10:59 AM   #3
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There are pros and cons to either model. For your indoor photos in the home, you may miss the ability to use an external flash for a more diffused light source with the Panasonic. You may also want a higher quality lens than the lens on the Panasonic for some of your outdoor shots (as purple fringing appears to be quite high in some conditions when zoomed in towards the longer end of it's zoom range). With a dSLR, you can buy lower or higher quality lenses as desired. Of course, size and weight should be taken into consideration, along with any inconvenience from swapping lenses. But, lenses become more of an investment with a dSLR (since you can usually take the lenses with you if you upgrade your body within the same camera brand).

You may also miss the ability to get a shallower depth of field to help isolate your subjects from distracting backgrounds (which is much tougher to achieve using a model with a small sensor like the Panasonic).

As you've already noticed, you'll have much better results in less than optimum conditions with a dSLR model, too (much lower noise levels as ISO speeds are increased, etc.).
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Old Nov 7, 2009, 11:05 AM   #4
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Yes, DSLR's can "do" much more as I stated in my original post.....so, both cameras side by side on a sunny day outside, would anyone be able to tell the difference ?
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Old Nov 7, 2009, 11:10 AM   #5
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That would depend on the subject type, lens used, focal length used, and more. You'll have a big difference in areas like Depth of Field with a small sensored model like the Panasonic (much greater depth of field for a given subject framing and aperture). But, for something like landscapes, you may not see a lot of difference between them. Dynamic Range may also be different (the ability to capture a greater range of bright to dark). Usually the DR is better with models using larger sensors (and Dynamic Range is quite good from the newer Sony 12MP CMOS Sensors, which is what the K-x appears to be using).
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Old Nov 7, 2009, 11:25 AM   #6
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I would be using the kit lense due to my budget. I don't mind going all out and getting the Pentax as long as the extra $ is worth it over the highly rated FZ35
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Old Nov 7, 2009, 11:28 AM   #7
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anthony_b-

Outdoors on a tripod doing landscapes, it would be difficult to see a difference, if a focal length of 28mm or more was used in 35mm terms.

However, I would surely miss being able to use an external flash with all it capabilities, especially bounce flash which I use a lot. However, in fairness, the FZ-35 could be equipped with a Metz-28 or a DigiSlave 3000 allowing bounce flashes and the difference begin to narrow once more.

The big difference, will be the high ISO capability of the Pentax Kx model. While the FZ-35 will be topping out at ISO 800 the Kx can go to ISO 6400, and even 12800 ISO in a pinch.

Have a great weekend.

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Old Nov 7, 2009, 4:34 PM   #8
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My first digital camera was a Panasonic DMC8 with the zoom 'Leica' lens. I got it in late 2004 and although it's alright, in my case I found myself frustrated by what it couldn't do. However the Pano your looking at is much newer, with better technology so I'm sure it's a better camera than my 2004 Panosonic. BTW...my Pano lens is branded Leica, but I have a 60 year old...real Leica (Leitz) lens and there is little comparison, IMO. The oldie is a genuine one and the quality is better...again, MO.



The shutter lag on the point and shoot almost drove me barmy...as the Brits say. I would press the shutter and a little while later the shutter actuated...but by that time the bird I was taking a pix of... was long gone.

I hated the fact that all the Pano had was the lens permanently attached. The sharpness of the pix and the lack of ability to put on a real wide angle or a long telephoto to take the pix I wanted was also frustrating. I also found that the difference between my Panasonic zoom lens and the kit lens on my KM is significantly different. The kit lens is better, IMO.

But then I was coming from a long experience with film slr and medium format cameras which I'm sure led to a lot of frustration with the Pano P + S. It couldn't do what my film SLR's or Mamiya TLR with interchangeable lenses could. Apples and oranges yes...but in the end you need to determine what your needs are. If a enhanced P+ S fills your needs and you have no intention to do anything besides taking birthday or holiday snaps...then maybe the Pano is for you.

If your a beginner the Pano you're looking at, maybe fine...but if you want to grow photographically...I would recommend the DSLR your considering....in your stated case the Pentax KX.

I've never used the Pano your talking about so hard for me to compare. Check out some tests where they show the pix from both cameras...that might give you the facts you want.

Last edited by lesmore49; Nov 7, 2009 at 4:50 PM.
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Old Nov 7, 2009, 4:53 PM   #9
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Lensmore, I hear ya loud and clear. In my heart I know the Pentax would be a better investment in the long run, I just want to make sure Its IQ is $300 better then the Panny.
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Old Nov 7, 2009, 5:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anthony_b View Post
Yes, DSLR's can "do" much more as I stated in my original post.....so, both cameras side by side on a sunny day outside, would anyone be able to tell the difference ?
Within the narrow scope of that scenario, no. Plus the FZ35 has a longer lens than the KX with its kit lens.

There are lots of reasons to choose a dSLR over a P&S, but shooting outside on a sunny day isn't one of them.
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