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Old Jul 21, 2004, 11:15 AM   #1
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Hi
Im John, im from the UK, this is my first post here.
Im currantly looking for my first digital camera and have had my heart set on the S7000 for quite a while. Anyhow, last night while browsing the net i found the Fuji S20 pro for £400 which i thought was a good price, untill i found out it has less True Pixels than the S7000? Why is this? I would think for paying more money the camera would be better, but it doesnt seem to be.
Can anyone help me with this? Is the S20 pro a better camera than the S7000? Is it worth me paying the extra cost?
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Old Jul 21, 2004, 11:34 AM   #2
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John:

More pixels does not necessarily mean "better".

Keep in mind that a CCD used inconsumer level cameras, is very tiny, compared to the type of sensor used in a DSLR (like the Nikon D70 or Canon Digital Rebel).

Because there are so many pixels, packed into such a tiny area, the photosites for each pixel must be smaller. As a result of their small surface area, more amplification of the signal is needed for equivalent sensitivity to light. This amplification increases noise (similiar to film grain). This is especially noticeable at higher ISO speeds. Although, Fuji does incorporate in camera processing for noise in the S7000, their noise reduction blurs detail, as higher ISO Speed are used.

Smaller photosites also have far less dynamic range. As a result, it's more difficult to record scenes with both bright, and shadow areas. As a result, sometimes you have to underexpose the shadow areas, to prevent blowing the highlights (resulting in loss of detail).

Fuji got a lot of criticism over the performance of the higher resolution CCD used in the S7000. As a result, they are using a lower resolution sensor in the newer model, designed to improve dynamic range. Although, to be frank, reviews that I've seen don't show anyreal advantage to this new design in the dynamic range department.

If you need much larger prints, then ahigher resolution CCD is desirable. However, if you don't need extremely large prints, then a lower resolution CCD with larger photosites for each pixel tends to produce better images.


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Old Jul 21, 2004, 11:43 AM   #3
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I have about £400 max to spend and i can get either the S20 or S7000 for that, but what camera would u recommend? I dont want one of these 'style' camera's. The reason i was going for the S7000 was cause of the body being quite big. Most of the reviews ive read on the S7000 complains about noise in the photos, but looking round the forums at users photographs, i see no extream noise in any.
If u could recommend a camera i would be gratful, and if there are any S7000 users on here i would be happy to hear your opinions on the camera.
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Old Jul 21, 2004, 12:28 PM   #4
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Well, some reviewers tend to be critical than others of things like noise.

Whether or not it becomes objectional usually depends on your subject type and lighting (noise is usually far more noticeable in sky and shadow areas), and the size you will be viewing or printing at.

So, if you're printing at 8x10" size, you probably would [EDIT:]NOTnotice things like JPEG Compression artificats causing loss of detail, noise, etc. However, if you're printing at much larger print sizes, then these image defects become more noticeable. But then again, if you're going to stick with 8x10" or smaller print sizes, you're not going to see any difference between a 3 Megapixel and a 6 Megapixel Camera anyway.

You'll need to decide which camera is best for you. Each user's preferencesin a camera will vary, and image quality is subjective. What's great to one user, may be unacceptable to another.

I'd only suggest looking at the review conclusion sections carefully, where Steve goes into more detail on each models strengths and weaknesses.


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Old Jul 21, 2004, 12:42 PM   #5
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The Idea with that sensor was to put 3Mp of regular sensors plus 3Mp of lower sensitivity and smaller sensors. Combining the two gives a 3Mp image with superior dynamic range because the small sensors wouldn't burn out the highlights. None of the reviewers seem to think the small dynamic range improvement is worth paying through the nose for a noisy 3Mp camera.

I'm not a real big fan of the S7000 either, but would take it over the S20. The only way to get a really good image you can blow up is to shot raw, which is an enormous file upsampled to 12Mp for some crazy reason. 6Mp and below has a lot of junk from an overly aggressive JPG compression as the best quality. Jeff goes into the compression and quality issues well:
http://www.dcresource.com/reviews/ca...il.php?cam=493
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Old Jul 21, 2004, 1:07 PM   #6
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Thanks for the replys but to be honest neither of these help.
Ill tell u what i want the camera for first.

I go to alot of metal/rock festivals and its hard to get a good shot in the crowd and if your not in the crowd your normally too far away to get a photograph with a normal camera. I would use the camera for everyday use like Partys, Special Events etc. I would also like to get into photography taking floral photos etc as a hobby. I pretty much need an all round camera with a good zoom that isnt going to let me down and has good picture quality (i personally am not to bothered about noise).

The S7000 seems to suit my needs but since i have never owned a digital camera before i could be wrong. £400 is alot of money and i really dont want to be wasting it on an ok camera when i could of got better.....

For anyone who doesnt know £400 = $750

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Old Jul 21, 2004, 1:47 PM   #7
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One of the tradeoffs with a small sensor camera is increased noise at higher ISO speeds.

Even though you indicate you don't care about it now, if you need to shoot photos in low light (such as at a night concert) without a flash, then you'll need to shoot at higher ISO speeds, so that you have shutter speeds fast enough to prevent blur from motion.

Images can get pretty ugly at higher ISO speeds in lower lightfrom a small sensor digital camera. Unfortunately, in order to get longer focal lengths (i.e., more zoom), without the camera being much larger and heavier, you will need to go this route.

The best camera for this kind of use is a Digital SLR (like the Canon EOS-300D, or Nikon D70) with a bright lens. However, this would increase your cost substantially.

Now, the S7000 really excels in one area -- flash range. So, this could be a helpful factor, if you can get "close to the action" (within about 26 - 28 feet). Most models can't do nearly as well, without using an external flash.

Nobody can decide for you. You'll need to make the decision. Hopefully, you'll get some more opinions on this model. However, take these opinions with a "grain of salt", because each users opinion will likely be biased, including mine.

You're better off reading theopinions from a Professional Reviewer (like the ones here at Steves-Digicams), paying close attention to each review's conclusion section for the strengths and weaknesses of a given model.

Then, compare images from the cameras you are considering, letting your own eyes decide which model does better. However, most digital cameras do great in good light, at lower ISO speeds (which is the way most review's sample images are shot).

In lower light and/or higher ISO speeds, it's "anotherballgame", where some models do MUCH better than others.

I'dalso make use of aphoto sharing site like pbase.com. They have a camera database, that lets you see sample photos from users of most popular camera models, taken by their subscribers. So, theseare"real world" images from camera users, taken in a greater variety of conditions, compared to the samplesyou'll find in the reviews (where photos tend to be taken in very good light, under optimal conditions).

Go to http://www.pbase.com/cameras and selecta camera model to see user albums. Then, look forphotos that are taken in the conditions you'll want to take them in with your camera.

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