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Old Jun 6, 2010, 2:54 PM   #1
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Default Best compact for outdoor/nature with good zoom and HD video?

I currently have a Canon G7 which I've been leaving behind when I climb a mountain because of the weight. I'd like to get a more compact camera with a good zoom and HD video. I've been looking at the Panasonic Lumix. I've always had a Canon...which takes amazing close-ups, so I'm a little bummed I can't find what I'm looking for in the Powershot S series.
Are there any cameras that are clearly a leader for what I'm looking for?
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Old Jun 6, 2010, 3:17 PM   #2
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Elaine.jennifer-

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

For a really small high performing ultra compact zoom camera with HD video, take a look at the Panasonic ZR1 model It has 12mp the same imager and processor as the much higher priced ZS7 model and 8X optical zoom (25 to 200mm) all in a very small form factor.

Amazon has them for under $200, and I noticed the first ZR1's beginning to show up on E-Bay as well.

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Old Jun 6, 2010, 4:34 PM   #3
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Thanks Sarah. Is the ZR1 smaller in size to the ZS7? I've been reading some of the other threads which are looking at these models. I don't buy a camera often....so when I do, I don't mind spending more if I get more zoom. And I recall something about video format not being compatible with video editing software in the past. Was that this Panasonic video format?
Thanks so much for help! I've been looking on and off at cameras for a year. Vacation to Newfoundland is nearing and I need a decision!
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Old Jun 6, 2010, 4:37 PM   #4
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Elaine.jennifer-

Yes, the ZR1 is indeed smaller and thinner than the ZS7 camera.

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Old Jun 6, 2010, 9:53 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elaine.jennifer View Post
And I recall something about video format not being compatible with video editing software in the past. Was that this Panasonic video format?
AVCHD was widely unsupported by software for some time but that has all changed now. Adobe Premiere has supported it through 2 versions now. You can find a list of the most popular editors here.

Panasonic and Sony are the forefathers of AVCHD, but it has now become the video recording standard on consumer cameras and camcorders.
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Old Jun 7, 2010, 5:06 AM   #6
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Keep in mind the ZS7 has 12X Zoom (compared to ZR1 8X Zoom) and also GPS to determine your location in case of emergency...I don't know if this would be applicable for your application, but I am definitely going to use it hiking/biking in Colorado...
also note the dimensions and weights of each:

ZR1 = 3.8" X 2.1" X 1" Wt 4.8 ozs w/ 8X Zoom

ZS7 = 4.1 X 2.4 X 1.3 Wt 6.9 ozs w/ 12X Zoom at 12Mp (14.7X Zoom at 8Mp and 18.8X Zoom at 5Mp) and GPS which marks the position of each picture you take which to me would be cool for mountain climbing, hiking, and biking, but it does use extra battery life with GPS on....and 3" LCD Screen with dedicated Video Button on the rear panel which makes it easy to shoot video quickly without fumbling through the menu which is a big plus for myself...of course the cost is $120 higher than the great bargain on the ZR1 also...
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