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Old Sep 7, 2010, 12:34 PM   #1
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Default Which P&S Super-Zoom for Concert Video/Stills?

I'm in the market for a point & shoot to be mainly used for shooting rock concerts - bot video and still shots. I have a budget of about $600 to work with. Basically this is a Christmas present for myself this year...

Right now I'm looking at the Canon SX20IS and the Panasonic FZ35 which both come in way under my price point. Right now I'm leaning towards the SX20 as the reviews on it seem a little better than the FZ35. I know the SX20 is slated to be replaced shortly - so I may wait on the purchase a bit to see how the replacement compares.

Are there other cameras I should be looking at as well?

I may consider stepping up to a dSLR if someone can comment on how easy or difficult they are to get into a concert. My experience has been that P&S cameras are a little more widely accepted at concert venues as opposed to the dSLR's.

The SX20 seems pretty good:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k_Aa4jDwqd4
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZTP1U_8xV3s

The one thing I've noticed with quite a few videos on various digital P&S are those vertical lines (see second video). What is the cause of this? Is it something that can be avoided somehow?

Also, I did notice that the FZ35 has an external mic in, although I'm not sure if it's a proprietary connection or not. I do have a decent audio recording setup... AT-933 stealth mics with interchangeable elements (omni, cardioid, and hyper), a battery box with bass roll-off and level adjusts, and a dual channel preamp for lower SPL's (sound pressure levels).

Any advice or recommendations would be greatly appreciated!
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Old Sep 7, 2010, 12:48 PM   #2
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moonchildave-

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

You have already hit on the key issue: Canon will be announcing a SX-20 replacement within the month. So it might be wise to wait and see what improvements that a SX-20 replacement can offer.

The two cameras mentioned: the Panasonic FZ35 and the Canon SX-20 dominate this field. Yes, there are other super zooms, but they do no approach the quality and performance offered by either the SX-20 or FZ-35.

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Old Oct 8, 2010, 10:46 PM   #3
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Ok, now that the SX-30 and the FZ100 are out - I'm in a bit of a quandry as which direction to head in. Anyone got any ideas of which camera would be best suited for my needs? I do like the fact that the zoom on the SX-30 is supposed to be very quiet.
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Old Oct 9, 2010, 8:57 AM   #4
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You may want to comb the forums here and see what owners have to say. I have an FZ35 and I enjoy it, though there's definitely a learning curve if you want the optimal shots from your camera in any given environment, but a friend has a Canon G11 - though I think the G12 is also due to come out soon - that she also enjoys very much.
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Old Oct 9, 2010, 6:43 PM   #5
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Ok, it seems as if one of the big differences between the SX30 and the FZ100 is the sensor. From what I've read, CCD has issues with vertical banding (which is what I asked about in the first post). That's a big killer in my opinion as my main purpose for the camera is shooting video at rock concerts (and an occasional still or two). Those bands are really annoying.

From what I have seen, the FZ100 takes a much more vibrant and colorful photo than the SX30.

There seem to be a lot of comparison shots - but no videos I've seen. I'd love to see some good concert videos and stills, but I imagine I may have to wait for those.

Also, one thing I haven't seen is talk about zoom noise on the FZ100.

I'm kind of in a rush to pull the trigger as I've got 2 concerts coming up fairly quick. I've got tickets to Trans-Siberian Orchestra on Nov. 18 and I'm also considering going to check out Suicidal Tendencies on Nov. 12.

So right now I'm leaning towards the FZ100 unless I find some other issues that would be a deal killer.
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Old Oct 9, 2010, 9:03 PM   #6
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I wouldn't worry too much about the streaking. The type of lighting at concerts isn't typically bright enough to cause issues. Either camera seems like a good choice.
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Old Oct 9, 2010, 9:36 PM   #7
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Actually, if you click on the second link in my first post (U2/Mysterious Ways) - the streaking is actually quite apparent (that is the SX20). Trans-Siberian Orchestra also has one hell of a light show.
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Old Oct 9, 2010, 9:44 PM   #8
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i dont think there is a big difference in still image quality between the sx30 and the fz100. the sx30is photos look good so far.

however, for video, i would definitely get the fz100, the cmos sensor will not show the banding which really is a problem for all ccd sensor cameras.

for the video being a priority, get the fz100, and probably better to get it now and learn to use it a bit.


(the things i am not sure how easy it will be to get any bridge superzoom into a concert, as they are nearly the \size of a dslr, and for sure you would never get a dslr into a concert)
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Old Oct 9, 2010, 10:06 PM   #9
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moonchilddave,

here's a link to a video i shot with a panasonic lumix fz35 back in march

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j4EnEOkhjt8
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Old Oct 10, 2010, 1:29 PM   #10
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Thanks all for the input... I went ahead and pulled the trigger on the FZ100 from Amazon for $418. Seemed like a good deal, and Amazon is pretty good about returns if things don't work out.

Everyone seems to say that the Panasonics have a bit of a learning curve... are they really that bad to figure out?
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