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Old Feb 28, 2010, 12:25 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by mtclimber View Post
As you add more zoom to the camera, the camera becomes physically larger. Yes, the 18X optical zoom, Panasonic FZ-35 is an excellent super zoom camera, but it weighs 14 ounces and it is surely not pocket sized.
That's true for 18x+ zoom cameras. However, as Sarah pointed out, there are 14x and 15x zoom cameras(well, the HZ35 has been announced but not released yet) that are very compact and slim. I'd also add the ZS3 and the new ZS7 to the mix. Both are 12x zoom cameras.
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Old Feb 28, 2010, 12:44 PM   #12
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Tullio-

I sort of drew the line at the 14X optical zoom line. But you are very correct. At its very low price of around $230.00, the Panasonic ZS-3 does offer a 25mm wide angle, 12X optical zoom and an excellent HD video mode, that allows you to zoom while filming. I own the ZS-3 and overcome the weak built-in flash unit that degrades indoor image quality, by using a Canon HF-1 slave flash.

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Old Feb 28, 2010, 10:48 PM   #13
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akmontgomery-

I do not want you to think that we are not staying with your camera search criteria. As you can see from the ongoing discussion, the obvious question is how much zoom do you really need.

That amount will vary from person to person. I have a very good friend whose requirements run somewhat close to your own requirements. She wanted a very small pocket size camera, with as much zoom as possible that worked well in the automatic mode.

I helped her and she finally settled on the Panasonic ZR-1 which she found for under $200 with free shipping at Amazon. The ZR-1 is thin and about credit card size. It has virtually zero shutter delay, and an excellent automatic mode called "Intelligent Automatic" that really works quite well. It is rather amazing that in a camera that small, she was also able to get 8X optical zoom (25mm to 200mm in 35mm terms).

The image quality has been quite good. Like its larger Panasonic relatives (ZS1, ZS3, and ZR3) it has a small and weak built-in flash unit. The Flash Range is effectively 8 to 10 feet, if the distance between camera and subject becomes greater, the ZR-1 increases the ISO setting automatically to compensate for the weak flash.

So there is another possible choice for your husband, as this camera easily fits into shirt or pants pockets.

Sarah Joyce

Last edited by mtclimber; Feb 28, 2010 at 10:51 PM.
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 8:27 AM   #14
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Sarah,

I'm curious - as someone who has used both cameras, how do you feel the image quality of the ZR1 compares to the ZS3?
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Old Mar 1, 2010, 11:35 AM   #15
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jazzer-

The image quality is a bit better. It is also the camera action that is different. The ZR1 has the improved OIS system and the the new image processor.

Have a great day.

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