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Old Nov 27, 2010, 7:13 PM   #1
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Default canon sx130is vs. panasonic lumix fz35

Hi All~

I've spent the entire day reading forums here and price checking on-line. Time to ask the experts.

I'm a stay-at-home/homeschooling mom of three, and we need a new camera. We have an old fuji that was a black friday special several years ago, gifted to us. It is on the fritz, all pictures show up blurry, the "shake" function is going haywire. And I hate it. lol

I've narrowed it down to the two in my heading, but am open to advice. I would need the camera for family functions, scouts, 4H, camping, and would like to do some decent family snapshots to frame. Nothing special, just some nice shots of us with the dog, sparing the chaos that my three kids and our german shepherd would bring to a studio.

Anyway, thoughts on these two? I like the canon because of it's price and features, and because it's not small. I am not a fan of the tiny pocket cameras. It seems a good starter point and shoot.

I like the panasonic because it seems highly recommended for a starter, it has more functions, and could lead into a dslr down the road when we can afford more; particularly if the kids get serious about photography, which I can see happening. The reviews say that it is easy to learn as well. I am willing to read the manual and play with it to see how to make it perform well, so am not necessarily needing an open and go model (but wouldn't knock it either!).

I'd really appreciate the help.
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Old Nov 27, 2010, 7:31 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mallorie View Post
Hi All~

I've spent the entire day reading forums here and price checking on-line. Time to ask the experts.

I'm a stay-at-home/homeschooling mom of three, and we need a new camera. We have an old fuji that was a black friday special several years ago, gifted to us. It is on the fritz, all pictures show up blurry, the "shake" function is going haywire. And I hate it. lol

I've narrowed it down to the two in my heading, but am open to advice. I would need the camera for family functions, scouts, 4H, camping, and would like to do some decent family snapshots to frame. Nothing special, just some nice shots of us with the dog, sparing the chaos that my three kids and our german shepherd would bring to a studio.

Anyway, thoughts on these two? I like the canon because of it's price and features, and because it's not small. I am not a fan of the tiny pocket cameras. It seems a good starter point and shoot.

I like the panasonic because it seems highly recommended for a starter, it has more functions, and could lead into a dslr down the road when we can afford more; particularly if the kids get serious about photography, which I can see happening. The reviews say that it is easy to learn as well. I am willing to read the manual and play with it to see how to make it perform well, so am not necessarily needing an open and go model (but wouldn't knock it either!).

I'd really appreciate the help.
I have the FZ35, and I just ordered the the sx130 so that I could
have a everyday use camera, the FZ35 is a very nice camera, but
the auto mode is lacking, I want a camera that I can just grab and
quickly take pictures without tinkering with settings, if you try that
with the FZ35 the images will not look very good, the FZ35 "can"
take amazing pictures, but only with effort from the user.
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Old Nov 27, 2010, 7:39 PM   #3
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Are those the best options that are less than $300? I'm trying to stay under that limit, but the pull of something like a G12 is hard to resist. (I think the G12 is what I liked, they're all running together at this point.)
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Old Nov 27, 2010, 9:07 PM   #4
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The "G"s will ultimately have better IQ than the SX series, but offer only 5x optical zoom. Is that enough for you? I've seen some remarkably good results from an SX110, two models before the current 130. For me the only major downside to the the SX130 is that it can't record RAW, though I believe there is a "hack" that can fix that without invalidating the warranty.
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Old Nov 27, 2010, 9:14 PM   #5
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For me the only major downside to the the SX130 is that it can't record RAW, though I believe there is a "hack" that can fix that without invalidating the warranty.
CHDK is not yet available for the SX130, but that may change

SX130IS - CHDK Wiki
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Old Nov 28, 2010, 6:41 AM   #6
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We Home School also:
The FZ35 is an excellent family camera...it does well everywhere up to ISO800...great for trips, home school, field trips, even records nice video...the flash works well up 10ft in a dark room...it is also user friendly...you really can't beat it for the price right now and the phots are great...$249 + Free Ship...
http://www.electrobrands.com/product...oduct_id=13780
Examples:
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...-seaworld.html
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...ntain-zoo.html
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...abilities.html
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...res-these.html
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...n-sees-me.html
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...-55-combo.html

From our Home School Field Trip:
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/pa...beds-hike.html

Last edited by LTZ470; Nov 28, 2010 at 6:58 AM.
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Old Nov 28, 2010, 8:21 AM   #7
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Ok, the FZ35 is the one I really want. But...i'm afraid that it's a bear to learn how to use?? I know NOTHING about cameras, but would like to learn. I think it would be a great thing to teach the kids, too (or y/k...learn with them like everything else lol).

The other thing, I have heard it has "poor low-light capability". Is that something where it's going to take a bad indoor photo, or are we talking night-time?

I have so much to learn. I guess what I'm looking for, is which is a better basic camera? Or does it just come down to how much time i'm willing to spend?

Great pics, LTZ470!

ETA: Now looking at the Panasonic ZS7. Would that be a better starter? ugh...here we go again...

Last edited by Mallorie; Nov 28, 2010 at 8:46 AM.
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Old Nov 28, 2010, 9:00 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mallorie View Post
Ok, the FZ35 is the one I really want. But...i'm afraid that it's a bear to learn how to use?? I know NOTHING about cameras, but would like to learn. I think it would be a great thing to teach the kids, too (or y/k...learn with them like everything else lol).

The other thing, I have heard it has "poor low-light capability". Is that something where it's going to take a bad indoor photo, or are we talking night-time?

I have so much to learn. I guess what I'm looking for, is which is a better basic camera? Or does it just come down to how much time i'm willing to spend?

Great pics, LTZ470!
You will do fine with the FZ35...it is a great camera...we really like the Canon S95 also, it's a great family camera too!
Turn the FZ35 Flash on put in iA Mode and shoot indoors easily...

12 feet distance flash:

My son was scared of Pinocchio, but Pinocchio finally won him over:






Bougainvillea my favorite:







Last edited by LTZ470; Nov 28, 2010 at 12:30 PM.
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Old Nov 28, 2010, 9:18 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mallorie View Post
Ok, the FZ35 is the one I really want. But...i'm afraid that it's a bear to learn how to use?? I know NOTHING about cameras, but would like to learn. I think it would be a great thing to teach the kids, too (or y/k...learn with them like everything else lol).

The other thing, I have heard it has "poor low-light capability". Is that something where it's going to take a bad indoor photo, or are we talking night-time?

I have so much to learn. I guess what I'm looking for, is which is a better basic camera? Or does it just come down to how much time i'm willing to spend?

Great pics, LTZ470!

ETA: Now looking at the Panasonic ZS7. Would that be a better starter? ugh...here we go again...
The ZS7 is an excellent camera, but the flash is only decent for a few feet (6-9 depending on circumstance)...it would struggle more indoors as it has a smaller Aperture of 3.3 and the FZ35 has 2.8 (Yes the smaller the number the larger the Aperture/Opening inside the camera allowing more light in to take as better photo in low light)

I would use the FZ35 as a discovery camera as it will open up many doors to photography and is very small and light! The battery has excellent life and an extra is cheap being an older model...The LCD and the EVF will work decently also...it is a very fun camera...take the time out and just go shoot photos whether of flowers, animals, children, I learned also by taking my children to the park and while they played I would photograph them and this helped me learn along with the FZ35...

Make sure you use good technique by taking deep breaths then letting the last out with the Shutter Button half pressed with the focus box green and then depress the shutter button fully without moving or shaking the camera...this will help you get some very nice photos and the photo will be very clear...

For help go to the Panasonic Forum here at Steve's and there is a wealth of knowledge from many folks there...willing to help in anyway...they helped me learn also...Sarah loves to help others with the FZ35 as well as Clint and me too!!

Mallorie I would also buy from a vendor like Amazon that has the 30 day No Hassle Return Policy even if it was a few more dollars then if you are overwhelmed you can return it and rethink another choice...that gives you 30 days of shooting and you can evaluate your results...


Last edited by LTZ470; Nov 28, 2010 at 11:14 AM.
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Old Nov 28, 2010, 10:55 AM   #10
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This camera is small and light? It looks big on the pictures! That is good to hear, because while I don't want a huge camera with changeable lenses (yet anyway) I don't want an ultra-small pocket camera that they are making now. I hate the small phones too. LOL

Your pictures are great! I'm off to order, thank you so much for the help! Looking forward to seeing you all on the Panasonic forums!
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