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Old Jan 11, 2005, 7:57 AM   #1
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Hi,

I'm looking for a new camera, with a decent optical zoom, ie 10x or more. I want to know if image stabilisation is crucial for a lens this size?

I've just returned a Panasonic FZ3 I bought, it felt too plasticy and just didn't seem well built enough.

I've been considering the FZ20, but am concerned that it may be too big and I'll be paying for features I may never use. I've also considered the Olympus C765, but it has no image stabiliser.

So in short, is an image stabiliser crucial for a 10x plus optical zoom lens?

What's a good, well built, model with and without one, depending on your response.

Thanks in advance.
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Old Jan 11, 2005, 9:08 AM   #2
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u_luv_it wrote:
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So in short, is an image stabiliser crucial for a 10x plus optical zoom lens?

IS can make a difference from time to time, but I wouldn't say crucial. One can use a tripod when shooting at high zoom and low light levels, or other bracing methods...

PhilR.
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Old Jan 11, 2005, 1:04 PM   #3
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You will get a lot more sharp handheld telephoto shots with stabilization. You will also be able to take shots at wider angles indoors without flash if the lighting is decent. Now that I have used stabilization I won't have another large camera without it. It seems that at least half of what I want to take long telephoto pictures of want to be in the shade, and you usually need a tripod for shade without stabilization.

There are some advantages of the FZ20 over the 765 other than stabilization. It is almost a full f-stop faster at full zoom giving better ability to deal with subject motion that stabilization doesn't help with. It has a great burst mode that helps in marginal shutter speed situations – there is often a null moment and the burst helps hit it. The internal flash is more powerful and it has a hot shoe for an external flash. The manual focus setup on the FZ20 is nice except that it doesn't display the focus distance.

But the 765 is easier to always have with you. It isn't a pocket camera – at least not in the summer when you are wearing jeans and a T-shirt. But you can find nice belt pouches that make it easy to carry around. The FZ20 is too big to carry except when you plan on taking pictures. You do miss a lot of photo opportunities when you don't have your camera always with you.

I haven't read of reliability problems with the FZ3. It is light for its size and gives the appearance of not being tough. I would personally rather have a lighter camera than one that I can think of as "substantial". As long as it holds together that is. The FZ1 has been around for a couple of years and they don't seem to be falling apart. I think the build is about the same as the FZ3.

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Old Jan 11, 2005, 1:14 PM   #4
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I think anything to reduce blurriness is good, especially at high-zoom. So I would recommend that you go with a camera with IS for ultra-zooms. If you were getting a low-zoom camera, I wouldn't worry that much about IS. Also, if you plan to use a tripod, IS is useless.
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Old Jan 11, 2005, 1:16 PM   #5
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u_luv_it wrote:
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Hi,

I'm looking for a new camera, with a decent optical zoom, ie 10x or more. I want to know if image stabilisation is crucial for a lens this size?

I've just returned a Panasonic FZ3 I bought, it felt too plasticy and just didn't seem well built enough.

I've been considering the FZ20, but am concerned that it may be too big and I'll be paying for features I may never use. I've also considered the Olympus C765, but it has no image stabiliser.

So in short, is an image stabiliser crucial for a 10x plus optical zoom lens?

What's a good, well built, model with and without one, depending on your response.

Thanks in advance.


Hi,

I have the Kyocera M410R which has 10x zoom with no IS and I don't think its a problem, but not used an IS model so can't compare.

Have a look at some of the shots posted in the Kyocera forum.

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...mp;forum_id=19

This link will show you what can be done, also shows its not too bad in low light with high ISO speed.

When all's said and done it has to be down to you, and what feels 'right' when you hold and use it. Before I bought the Kyocera I went to the shop and played with all 3of the Ultra-zooms I'd narrowed my choice down to: Canon S1-IS, Panasonic Z3, and the Kyocera M410R.(I didn't look at the Olympus as I didn't want to go with the Xd card.)


Good luck

Ian

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Old Jan 11, 2005, 2:23 PM   #6
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Whatever static shot you can get handheld without stabilization you can get in 1/4 to 1/8 the light with it. Minolta and Nikon are claiming 3 full f-stops and I don't' think Panasonic is saying, but it is at least 2 f-stops and probably more.
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Old Jan 11, 2005, 2:31 PM   #7
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PhilR. wrote:
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u_luv_it wrote:
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So in short, is an image stabiliser crucial for a 10x plus optical zoom lens?

IS can make a difference from time to time, but I wouldn't say crucial. One can use a tripod when shooting at high zoom and low light levels, or other bracing methods...

PhilR.

IS makes a difference every time you shoot. Now if you only use a tripod then no, you don't need IS. But for those of us who like to carry our cameras and know we can ALWAYS get the shot, yes it's a big deal.

If you check out the Panasonic forum you'll see hand-held 12X optical + 4X digital (48X total) shots of moving subjects. That is impressive.

This individual said that the FZ20 might be too big. That would most certainly mean to me a tripod is out of the question.
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Old Jan 11, 2005, 5:10 PM   #8
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i agree, if your using 10x zoom, you need IS. especially if tour not steady handed pro. Also, its a know fact that a heavier camera can be held sturdier. That goes back to 35mm film lore!

Have you tried looking at the canon S1? Its also made of plastic, but it feels solid compared with the FZ3 and is about the saem size. Alot of people who own it had compared it with the FZ3 and decided the same thing you did.
The FZ20 is a way better cam, but its bigger and costs more. try one out, you just might like it

P.S. Don't pay any mind to those that dis the S1, i would say that for every person who dises it,there are two people who praise it! Mind you those that dis it had it for about a week, got frustrated and gave it up. those that praise still own it.
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Old Jan 11, 2005, 6:53 PM   #9
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Only get the S1 if you value movie mode.
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Old Jan 11, 2005, 10:10 PM   #10
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tacticalnuke wrote:
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Quote:
tacticalnuke wrote:

IS makes a difference every time you shoot. Now if you only use a tripod then no, you don't need IS. But for those of us who like to carry our cameras and know we can ALWAYS get the shot, yes it's a big deal.
Quote:
I don't know why you would think that just because I said IS wasn't crucial, that it meant that IS wasn't a big deal. Anyway -- IS does *not* make a difference every time you shoot. If your shutter speed is high enough, then IS won't matter at all. IS only make a difference if the light levels are too low to shoot handheld, and that does not happen every time one shoots. IS will also *not* give you the ability to "always get the shot". In fact, no camera will allow you to always get the shot. It is possible to shoot outside the parameters of any camera, IS or no. IS does help, indeed sometimes a lot, but it does not perform miracles. If you think that your IS camera will allow you to "always get the shot", then you have been greatly misinformed. If so far all your photos have come out just fine, then good for you - you are cruising down the middle lane of photography...
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If you check out the Panasonic forum you'll see hand-held 12X optical + 4X digital (48X total) shots of moving subjects. That is impressive.
Quote:
And your point is? I know what pictures are there - I use an FZ w/IS and I know what it is capable of. Thepictures of which you speakare indeed impressive, but then again I didn't say they were not. In fact, I said thatIS can help, as those pictures you mention prove. Perhaps you should re-read my post.
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This individual said that the FZ20 might be too big. That would most certainly mean to me a tripod is out of the question.
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Certainly you can assume that, even though no one said if he/she would even consider it. I only answered his question, and stated other options if they so desire. If you want to state what you think they desire, that's up to you. As for me, I won't assume anything...
Quote:
I think it is obvious that you believe that I'm trying to say that IS isn't needed or wasn't useful, since you are trying to prove they are. If I thought that IS wasn't useful, I wouldn't have purchased a Panasonic. But despite the fact that it is indeed helpful (a point on which we seem to agree), it *isn't* crucial. If it were crucial, then we wouldn't have all those wonderful photographs from the decades before IS became available. Instead of trying to use your limited photographic knowledge toprove a useless point, I'd like to seeyou try to explain toeveryonehow those Oly and Fuji mega-zoom camera users get such good photos without IS, or how we got along during thedecadesbefore IS was invented.....

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