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Old Jun 18, 2010, 6:51 PM   #1
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Default Need Advice

New member and a novice photographer.

I'm in need of a new camera and have researched too much and become very confused at what to buy. I need a camera that can take pictures indoors from a distance (such as an awards program, concert, or ballgame sitting at a distance) It also needs to be able to do well at soccer games and indoors for taking pictures of children. As you can probably guess this would be the main family camera so we would also like it for vacations and occasional video. My wife likes to scrapbook, so cropping and enlarging photos are occasionaly done too.

I realize that all P & S cameras are a compromise, but I'm not prepared to move into SLR's.

I'm looking at the following:

Large Superzooms
Panasonic FZ-35 (probably our top choice)
Canon SX20 IS (my wife saw this used at an awards program sitting in the back and was impressed with the photos)

Compact Superzooms
Canon SX120 IS (tested, and liked it in the store good price currently $179)
Panasonic DMC-ZS1 (was my initial choice until my wife saw pictures from the SX20; price good now $189)
Fuji JZ 300 (haven't been able to find out much about this; but the price is right)

Basic Camera
Canon SD 780 IS (like the size and video; $169)
Canon A3100/A300 (very basic; but have heard image quality is good)
Sony DSC-W330

Would the more expensive cameras (FZ-35) be worth it over the Canon SX120 and others? Image quality is probably the most important thing next to cost; however I also like the fact that the Canon's I've tested can zoom past optical into digital; does the panasonics do this?

I've been unable to 'test' any panasonic cameras, how does the size of the FZ-35 compare to the Nixon L110. The nixon felt very comfortable and not overly big. I'm concerned with the large size of the SX20 and the FZ-35, so would it make sense to buy an inexpensive compact like the last three for the sake of size in addition to one of the larger superzooms.

Sorry for so many questions. I would appreciate any advice.
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Old Jun 18, 2010, 7:18 PM   #2
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Fuji HS10 is another good choice for large superzoom worth looking at, it is a bit more the the fz 35
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