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Old Dec 7, 2004, 10:05 PM   #1
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Hi everyone. I'm looking to purchase a new ultrazoom camera and need some feedbacks from you guys.

I dont need more than 3-4 megapixel since I almost never print pictures , but when I do it's mostly in the 4x6 -5x7 range.

My choices.

canon powershot s1 is

fuji finepix s5100

panasonic fz3.

if you have any other suggestions let me know.



I will mostly use it for portrait shooting, action shots like F1 racing, car, kitesurfing, etc.. also landscape, interior shots.

I've seen lot of pics now of what the cameras can do.

here are some examples:

fuji s5100 user gallery:http://borlack13.tripod.com/index.html

canon powershot s1:http://www.pbase.com/rhiggs1

and the fz3 i've looked in the panasonic forum of this website plus pbase too.

and also the galleries from the reviews websites too.

I have to say I'm leaning towards the fuji and canon. Image quality is good , the conveniance of AA batteries for when I travel or if I need juice right away is good.

I like the movable lcd screen from the canon for those akward shots , the CF cards , AA batteries. if it had an AF assist light it would almost be perfect

Only thing I don't like about the fuji is the xd card because it's more expensive. the lack of image stabilization doesn't bother me since the long exposure shots you need a tripod anyways . I like the shape of the camera which looks like a small slr camera, Af assist light .

I dont really need the the long zoom of the panasonic , but everyone says they are better in image quality. from the shots I've seen I don't see a big difference. yes the shots are very clear ,but can be noisy too.

Anyways I don't need the camera right now so I can take my time to shop and try them before I buy , but I heard canon is coming with the new s2 camera maybe in february. I don't know if i should wait to see what they come up with. maybe we will see a super camera(the almost perfect camera maybe:shock.

let me know what you think.

thanks
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Old Dec 8, 2004, 11:53 AM   #2
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Hi! I have both a S1 & a FZ20, which is similar to FZ3& while they are both good cameras. It is really no contest. The FZ is by far my favorite. The thing that bothers me most concerning the S1 is the manual mode. There is no exposure meter, just small number up in left side of screen. In order to get exposure number to appear you have to half depress shutter release. However to change exposureyou have to release shutter button, which makes the number disappear. Then you push left & right arrows, pausing ever now & again to half depress button to see if you've found zero before pushing arrows again. Now that you've got the easy part done (sarcasm) you get to use the manual focus. While holding the manual focus button in with the left hand, you get to push the up & down arrows back & forth which is hard to do in small degrees to adjust the focus.

On the FZ you have an exposure meter so you know where you are & its much easier to set exposure. Then you have a focus ring so the left hand is adjusting focus not holding a button in. The right hand is ready to push the shutter button. Its not adjusting the focus.

Really can't believe thats the best canon could do, but haven't found an easier way.

Then the FZ has some neat scene modes. The panning mode made it much easier to get some decent action shots of the river otters. I have to admit got a few with canon in fast mode but not as many. Also FZ has a party mode for dim light situations which helps.

Color is excellent on Canon,but good on Panasonic & haven't tried vivid yet which I might like better. If I decided on S1 I'd definitely wait for S2. Haven't been troubled by noise so much as by the 80% + of shots that are trash, no matter what camera i'm using.

You're right about the batteries you can't beat the 4AA's which is one of the reasons that I bought the S1. The other is that already had compact flash memory from a Minolta S414. Was dissatisfied with some long distance shots of mountain goats & felt didn't have enough optical on Minolta & enough megapixel on Canon so got FZ. Must say I'm thankful for 18 month no interest offers. Felt earlier shots taken with 4mp & 4opx Minolta were better than Canon shots. Though saw goats at different times, different scenery &with different cameras, so comparision maybe not valid. However you cansometimes get extra battery at Circuit city (like now) & had no trouble on ebay getting what I believe is quality battery for less $20,which is high compared to $1 each for 2000mah 4AA.

If can be of any farther help let me know.


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Old Dec 8, 2004, 2:12 PM   #3
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ferrarista wrote:
Quote:
canon powershot s1 is

fuji finepix s5100

panasonic fz3.
If you care about pic quality, the FZ3 is best... if you care about video, I think the S1 IS is best (I bought my S1 IS over the FZ3 primarily because it has a good video mode).

Obviously other ultra-zooms from Konica Minolta and Olympus should be considered (but only KM has image stabilization)...

Quote:
I have to say I'm leaning towards the fuji and canon. Image quality is good , the conveniance of AA batteries for when I travel or if I need juice right away is good.
Panasonic has better image quality than others (from what I understand). It definitely has better pic quality in low-light (Canon S1 IS sucks in low light)...

Quote:
I like the movable lcd screen from the canon for those akward shots , the CF cards , AA batteries. if it had an AF assist light it would almost be perfect
Lack of AF-assist is a huge negative... but the S1 IS definitely has better minor features (like AA batteries, snap&twist LCD, etc).

Quote:
the lack of image stabilization doesn't bother me since the long exposure shots you need a tripod anyways .
How about at high zoom? The best thing about IS not really long exposures but high zoom. Camera shake is more noticeable at high zoom and IS should theoretically help...

Quote:
Anyways I don't need the camera right now so I can take my time to shop and try them before I buy , but I heard canon is coming with the new s2 camera maybe in february. I don't know if i should wait to see what they come up with. maybe we will see a super camera(the almost perfect camera maybe:shock.
You won't get a "perfect" camera any time soon. Ultra-zooms will still likely have a small sensor compared to low-zoom cameras (so they will have more noise).

I'm not sure where you heard that Canon is coming out with S2 but it wouldn't surprise me if they did. Right now, the S1 IS is lacking some key features compared to the Panasonic FZ3 and they need to introduce some new things to compete better. However, they may also wait until September (or thereabouts)...

If you can wait, I recommend that you wait... you might need to wait until Sept 2005 but it will be worth it IMO (assuming new versions of cameras come out)...
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Old Dec 9, 2004, 8:59 PM   #4
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As negative as I am about the manual focus mode on S1, I must say some of my best photos have been shot with S1, though in program mode. Also it does better in low light situation than FZ-20, maybe because of more megapixels. Can take manual shots in ISO 200 with S1 that have to use 400 with FZ20.
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