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Old Jan 2, 2018, 1:36 PM   #1
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Default Getting back into photography, do I want mirrorless or bridge?

Hello Steve's:

I've been around photography (and this forum) for a few years. I actually used to do portrait and wedding photography. I got out of portraits and weddings in 2008-ish and sold ALL my gear (two D200s, external flashes, lenses, etc) and replaced it all with just a Panny FZ150 (long story why I went this route) and I've just been shooting as a hobbyist since then.

I'd like to get into something other than the FZ150. Primarily, I'm interested in something with WiFi abilities so I can (1) control the camera via a smartphone and (2) transfer photos directly to my phone after the shots are taken.

I do not have a huge budget and I'm actually starting to save up from $0 for my next camera. I'm interested in mirrorless or even an older DSLR. I'm also considering "bridge" cameras because there have been lots of advances in the cameras and also there's no need to carry additional lenses and the need to swap out lenses when needed. That and the cost of additional glass is something I would have to take into account down the road.

I am not in a rush to make a purchase. As I mentioned, I am starting at $0. It will be a few months before I have the funds available to make a purchase and newer models could be introduced by the time I'm ready. I'm just looking for what road I should go down.

I am open to your suggestions. Please provide your thoughts and opinions.

I look forward to reading your suggestions.

Thank you.
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Old Jan 2, 2018, 7:49 PM   #2
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I'd say that, while larger image sensors provide better image quality, a superzoom camera will be optically superior to a superzoom lens on an interchangeable lens camera. I'm most familiar with Sony's products, so I'll use them as a reference when I say that I would choose an RX10 over an A6500 with an 18-200 lens.

As far as mirrorless goes, they all feature a short flange focal length. As a result, they must bend light more in order to project an image over the entire sensor. That effort naturally increases the tendency to distort, vignette, and produce chromatic aberration and field curvature (soft corners), and the larger the sensor, the greater those tendencies. Of course, those are not insurmountable problems, but the task of surmounting them requires better, more expensive lenses, or cheap software tricks in-camera. Unfortunately, the "cheap software tricks" is the path most often taken, though not without creating some new problems. And of course, nobody has yet come up with a cheap software trick for the soft corners. So if you're considering going the mirrorless route, I suggest a smaller image sensor like the m4/3 systems.

Do with that what you will.
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Old Jan 2, 2018, 11:47 PM   #3
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My thoughts,

During 2013/14 I was fortunate enough to shoot with 6 different cameras not counting my phone, The Panny FZ200 being one of them.

I remember that for what it was, a super zoom 25-600mm with a constant 2.8 lens, the Panny was a very nice camera. For 90% of photography enthusiast it's more then likely all you would ever need. I liked the colors the camera produced they were very vibrant. The AF was good, not much to complain about. It was a nice camera. The only negatives I can remember was cropping photo's during processing. The small sensor didn't work well for me. The lack of really good shallow DOF was noticeable such as a portrait isolating the person from the background. The Panny just limited my ability to get creative on a few occassions.

The NEX-6.
I like this camera. I would choose this camera over the Panny. The larger sensor, ability to change lenses, crop without as much image degradation. Those things are important to me. I was hiking a lot then and with the small 16-50 lens it would fit in my pocket. The 18-200 lens and I have captured some really good images with both the Nex & A600. It may not test well in a lab but in real life shooting it is a great combo. I have since upgraded to a A-6000 but still have the NEX-6.

I had several opportunities to shoot with a A99 during that time. Very nice camera.

The Sony A850 & 900 are my currently workhorse cameras. They do everything I need.

The Canon S95 is my camera when I don't want to carry a camera. It's old but I just got some great photo's a Clapton concert recently. It fits into my pocket nicely.

With all that said. Considering your background in photography and the fact that the Panny FZ150 is an older camera, wanting to upgrading is not surprising. The new Sony RX10 sounds like a very logical upgrade from your Panny if you want to stay with a bridge camera. But I have no problem recommending a mirrorless camera either.

Tough choice.
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Old Jan 3, 2018, 10:20 AM   #4
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Thank you both TCav and lomitamike for your detailed reply. I really appreciate it.

The RX10 is a camera I have on my short list. Maybe by the time I'm ready to make a purchasing decision, I'll be able to find one used for a good price. The older models are less than $800, but I can't justify the price of the III and IV right now.

The NEX-6 looks good and looks like it can be found for less than $300.

I don't shoot weddings anymore and if someone asked me to, I feel that my fee would have to justify renting all the necessary equipment and buying a RX10-IV for me!

I don't really do portraits, but I wouldn't mind doing a few here and there.

I've been shooting mostly landscapes, scenics, street, etc.

Here's a Super Moon shot I just took on the 150 on Monday. I didn't spend much time outside because temps were in the single digits!

I haven't been shooting many concerts (as an official event photographer) lately either, but I still enjoy shooting concerts. I'll be going to a concert in April and I have a feeling I'll be in nosebleed seats.

I think a bridge camera would best suit me just because I want to be able to shoot whatever I'm going to shoot and not have to worry about what lens I have on the body and potentially miss a shot. I live in the Shenandoah Valley and I'm not far from a national park, state park, and several local parks along the Shenandoah River. I can't exactly tell an eagle or heron to hold that pose while I adjust!
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Old Jan 3, 2018, 10:22 AM   #5
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FWIW - That shot was handheld. I was shooting some on tripod, but the frigid temps and winds made me retreat to the car and I shot from the car.
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Old Jan 3, 2018, 2:51 PM   #6
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*Do* consider the Panasonic FZ1000 since you're leaning towards a bridge camera. Most excellent!
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Old Jan 3, 2018, 3:43 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gjtoth View Post
*Do* consider the Panasonic FZ1000 since you're leaning towards a bridge camera. Most excellent!
Okay, other than the fact that I already use Panasonic (I also have a TZ5) please sell me on the FZ1000.

The RX10 has 24mm-600mm f/2.4-4

The Panasonic is 25mm-400mm

I'm not sold on any camera at this point. I'd like to know why you pick the FZ1000.

Thank you


And I like your signature.
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Old Jan 3, 2018, 6:02 PM   #8
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According to DxOMark, image quality from the Sony RX10 and Panasonic FZ1000 would be similar.

The same is true for the later models of the RX10 and the Panasonic FZ2000.
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Old Jan 3, 2018, 6:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TCav View Post
According to DxOMark, image quality from the Sony RX10 and Panasonic FZ1000 would be similar.

The same is true for the later models of the RX10 and the Panasonic FZ2000.
Thank you.
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Old Jan 3, 2018, 8:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Photog4Christ View Post
Okay, other than the fact that I already use Panasonic (I also have a TZ5) please sell me on the FZ1000.

The RX10 has 24mm-600mm f/2.4-4

The Panasonic is 25mm-400mm

I'm not sold on any camera at this point. I'd like to know why you pick the FZ1000.

Thank you


And I like your signature.
Thanks!

Check 'em out side-by-side https://www.dpreview.com/products/co...s=sony_dscrx10

Note that the FZ1000 has a fully-articulated LCD, has a 16x optical zoom, has more focus points, viewfinder rez is almost twice that of the Sony, faster shutter speed, 12 fps vs 10fps on the Sony, 4K video to name just a few of the differences.
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