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Old Apr 10, 2010, 5:34 PM   #11
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I looked at both these cameras recently. The A550 does have great reach, and good response time - my two biggest issues after overall image quality. However, I did want one dedicated lens and given the opportunity to change lenses (fish eye, macro etc.) I would! Which for me is danger zone. It ups the price of the camera both initially and over time for me. Secondly, I wanted FAST, and none of the sony's I've used or tried have great shot to shot time. According to people who HAVE tried the HS10, it does have admirable shot to shot recovery time, though I have yet to play and see. Mine is ordered and I am looking forward to checking it out! If I am not happy, I'm likely to return it and get something with a bigger sensor and faster turn over, which would have to be a DSLR, I think. The only OTHER camera in this class that I haven't tried is the Canon SX1is. I tried the SX20is, and wasn't impressed with the response time. hth!
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Old Apr 10, 2010, 8:17 PM   #12
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andytree-

You will have to purchase a used Canon SX-1 or a camera remaining in inventory. The SX-1 is no longer in production.Any DSLR will have a decidedly greater ISO capability and better image quality due to any DSLR camera's larger imager over the Fuji HS-10 camera.

I know that the HS-10 is very attractive, the specs made me dream too when I first read them as well. However, at the end of the day, the HS-10 is a small imager super zoom.

Sarah Joyce

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Old Apr 10, 2010, 9:02 PM   #13
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Mrs. MtClimber I been doing a lot of reading and have a bad headache. haha.. I am learning though. Since I am new to all of this I appreciate your help.

Tell me if the following is a good package.

a550
f58-am flash
16-35mm carl zeiss lens (indoor stuff - weddings, parties, etc...)
18-250mm sony lens (mult-purpose)

Does that sound good? That should be all I need.
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Old Apr 10, 2010, 9:17 PM   #14
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conradcjc-

That will work fine. However, you can purchase a Tamron 18-250 on E-Bay for around $350, rather than paying Sony's premium price. You should also buy the kit lens that can be included with the A-550 if it is available, because it is substantially discounted.

By the way, Sarah or Sarah Joyce feels a lot more comfortable that that moniker "Mrs MtClimber."

Sarah Joyce
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Old Apr 10, 2010, 9:48 PM   #15
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Thanks for the help Sarah. I am looking at the Tamron lenses now. I may even buy those they seem to get great reviews and much cheapier. I am looking at the 17-50mm f/2.8 and 28-300mm for the Sony. The reviews on B&H are fabulous for those lenses.

Thanks again for all your insight on this camera stuff.
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Old Apr 11, 2010, 9:07 AM   #16
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I just bought the a550 with kit zoom and SAL75300. I see you have settled on the body plus some better quality lenses. You might want to just get the kit zooms and see if they are good enough for you. They are pretty cheap. And if you ever loan your camera out, you might feel less worried if your good glass stays at home.

I've read a lot of reviews and none of them mention 16:9. Only Sony and Olympus DSLRs have this for in-camera jpeg. Also, the Sony has somewhat adjustable 2-shot HDR. This might help you with your outdoor shots. And, if you use it, the Live-View AF is top-rated.

I actually don't see this as either/or. A P&S has it's place (usually in your pocket). You'll grab shots when the DSLR is still in the bag or at home. I carry around a casio s12. Not for the IQ. But for the availability.
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Old Apr 11, 2010, 3:37 PM   #17
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I think the thing that really needs to be stressed here is that 99.9% of the time you cannot see the difference from a pretty good image quality (which from samples the HS10 looks) to an amazing image quality from high end SLRs and high end lenses.

Rubbish you say? No, itís because 99.9% of the time if you have framed the photo correctly you will be looking at the whole photo, e.g. full zoomed out and normally on a PC screen for a few seconds or printed out on a max of 10x8" print.

When you view the photo at 100% 1:1 on screen there will be a massive difference from a the 2 cameras in question but then you should expect this as there is a huge difference in price but more importantly to me size (portability wise) too.

Picture the scene, you are on a nice walk with the dog, lots of lovely scenery so nice big wide shots. Then all of a sudden you spot a dear, eagle, penguin (you choose) and you want a shot it. The SLR would give you a much better shot, it would be better exposed, the expensive glass would give you less chromatic aberration, there would be less pixel noise, the DR would be far greater but by the time you have reached for your bag, carefully got your over priced lenses out, skilfully juggled the lenses and lens covers and swapping the lenses over without getting big splodges of dust or dirt on the glass or sensor then the split second moment is long over and you have missed the opportunity.

I think itís that, that should be the deciding factor from a bridge camera or an SLR, the price is just another factor in favour of the bridge camera. Something else that favours the HS10 but this time only over the current Sony SLRs is the ability to take videos too. 1920x1080 at 30fps is nothing to be scoffed at and taking thirty 2.1mp photos every single second with the same optical quality as any photo taken with the camera is a very handy tool to have when you are not sure when the best time to take the photo is. OK its nowhere near as good as a photo would be (due to compression algorithms) but a frame grab from the split second you wanted, and would have otherwise missed, you get a fairly printable photo.

The other factor is with such a great zoom then you can overcome the image quality by optically zooming in more. e.g. 720mm with so-so image quality will still look a million times better than 450mm (300mm + 1.5x crop) from a high end SLR once you have to start zooming into the photo to get closer to the object.

Anyway, just my thoughts on the subject but am very excited to see how the HS10 reviews go.

Philip Loadwick,
CEO of Fuji
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Old Apr 11, 2010, 4:27 PM   #18
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loadwick-

Thanks for a well constructed thesis. I happen to agree with your approach. In good lighting conditions, it is generally difficult to see the rather subtle image quality differences between high end super zoom or bridge cameras like the Fuji HS-10 and the entry level DSLR cameras.

It is when the going gets tough and rough that you have better equipment. For example in a very poorly lighted photo environment that requires at least ISO 3200 to come away with a usable image. That is when I put my HS-10 back in the camera case and reach for my Pentax Kx model DSLR.

It is a matter of matching your equipment to the photo environment that you encounter.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Apr 11, 2010, 4:29 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by p_loadwick View Post
Picture the scene, you are on a nice walk with the dog, lots of lovely scenery so nice big wide shots. Then all of a sudden you spot a dear, eagle, penguin (you choose) and you want a shot it. The SLR would give you a much better shot, it would be better exposed, the expensive glass would give you less chromatic aberration, there would be less pixel noise, the DR would be far greater but by the time you have reached for your bag, carefully got your over priced lenses out, skilfully juggled the lenses and lens covers and swapping the lenses over without getting big splodges of dust or dirt on the glass or sensor then the split second moment is long over and you have missed the opportunity.
I understand your point but this scenario is ludicrous. Who would carry a bag loaded with a DSLR and lenses while walking the dog?
When I'm out walking the dog I rarely carry a camera unless my cell phone counts. If I were carrying a DSLR the lens would already be attached so all of the negatives you stress would be irrelevant. There is time and a place for everything when it comes to cameras. Most of us who have been shooting pictures for awhile realize that there times when pocket cameras are more convenient than DSLRs. We also realize that if you want the best images possible, smaller sensored cameras just don't cut it, though there are some that do a great job.
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Old Apr 11, 2010, 5:01 PM   #20
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@ Sarah Joyce - Yes I agree, no small sensor camera will ever compete in low light conditions with an SLR from both a sensor and lens point of view. For me though it’s rare that I truly need top quality photos at super high ISOs. The flash normally does the trick most of the time or long exposures but I totally understand that sometimes neither of those will be suitable and an SLR is required. On a side note, from sample photos the HS10 looks pretty good even at ISO-800. Wondered what your experience was.


@meanstreak

The scene I was setting was not to be taken so literally. It was just a typical holiday situation or safari or hike in the mountains or air show etc. And yes you can have your tele-photo lens on all the time as wide angle shots are rarely needed quickly but I was merely pointing out the hassle of carry 2,3,4 lenses around and having to change them every time you want a different focal length.
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