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Old Feb 24, 2010, 7:52 PM   #1
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Default Lumix ZR1 - Now or Wait?

In another thread, I saw that someone wrote that the Panasonic ZR1 has been discontinued and will soon be replaced. I just bought it today at Costco for a great price. It has the features I'm looking for - mainly a pretty fair (8x) zoom, power OIS, 25-200mm and great pocket size so I'll always have it with me. Its pictures quality reviews have been good.

Have not opened the package yet tho I'm itching to do so. Should I wait a few weeks until its replacement comes out to see what has been added/changed? Anyone have any scoop on why they've already taken this one out of production?
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Old Feb 24, 2010, 9:08 PM   #2
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loescraps-

Welcome to the Forum. We're delighted that you dropped by.

Both the Panasonic ZS1 and the ZR-1 are good cameras producing excellent outdoor image quality. It is with the indoor image quality that things begin to head south. The cause of the declining indoor image quality rests squarely on the very small and weak built-in flash unit.

The ZR-1 model was a "trial horse for Panasonic. It was the camera that was the very first camera to use the new and improved OIS (optical image stabilization) system, and it also attempted to create a "work around" kind of solution for the very weak, small built-in flash unit. The Owner's Manual calls for auto ISO to be used when the flash is used. In doing that, you can take built-in flash lighted photos from a flash range greater than 5 to 6 feet. The camera just automatically increases the ISO setting as needed to achieve a workable exposure. The problem is this: as the flash range increases to over 10 feet, the elevated ISO setting has now gradually, and gradually increased. At 14 feet, in most cases the ISO setting is at ISO 1250. As you might expect, that, all by itself, has a very negative effect on indoor image quality. So yes, there is indeed a "work around" but it really does not address the problem very well at all.

I own the ZR-1, ZS-1 and ZS-3 cameras. To recover indoor image quality, I use a Canon HF-1 Slave Flash. It actually works quite well. However, it is indeed, an added expense when shooting with those cameras. I have attached a sample photo taken from a distance of 12 feet using the added slave flash.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Feb 25, 2010, 8:31 PM   #3
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Thanks so much for the info and for the sample photo. Your lighting and clarity look great. My indoor photos are mostly at Christmastime so maybe by that time I'll add a flash.

I'm still curious why they've already discontinued the ZR-1. I'd like to take it on a trip soon but may hold onto it and return it if they're coming out with something that would be much improved. I only buy a camera about every 3-4 years and would hate to be behind in the technology right from the get-go.
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Old Feb 25, 2010, 9:09 PM   #4
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louscraps-

Yes, there will be follow-on cameras to come. This was the first time that Panasonic ever created a short lived prototype proving camera, and it was quite popular as I am sure the newly introduced cameras will be as well.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Feb 25, 2010, 9:12 PM   #5
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louscraps-

Here is a link to the follow-on camera:
http://www.panasonic.net/avc/lumix/c...zx3/index.html

Sarah Joyce
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Old Feb 26, 2010, 9:16 PM   #6
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This is so helpful. Thanks again.
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Old Feb 27, 2010, 4:25 PM   #7
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Louscraps-

I don't want to leave you with the wrong impression. The Zr-1 is a very good camera. Here is a nice sunset done with the ZR-1 using the Sunset Scene Mode.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Feb 27, 2010, 4:28 PM   #8
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Awesome!!!!
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Old Mar 2, 2010, 10:28 PM   #9
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lou-

Here is another photo sample form the Panasonic ZR-1. For a camera now selling for less than $(US)200.00, it sure does a great job.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Mar 7, 2010, 10:26 AM   #10
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Just back in town. This is a great photo. I've looked at the new features and they are pretty special. They just don't say how much the new version will sell for. Will have to decide something pretty soon. Thanks so much for your help.
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