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Old Jan 22, 2005, 6:33 AM   #1
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I'm looking to get a new camera, preferably with a long zoom and a decent video mode (640x480?), all for around £350. The camera's i am looking at are:

Fuji S5500, Kodak DX7590, Panasonic Lumix FZ20 or the Minolta Z3.

Does anybody have any experience of these camera's and make a recommendation as to the best all rounder, or maybe even confuse me further by throwing another model or two into the mix! How important is Anti Shake or Image stabilization? I'm sure it would be handy but is it essential on a long zoom camera?



TIA


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Old Jan 22, 2005, 6:44 AM   #2
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Hello,

Don't know about any of those, although the Panasonic has good reviews.

I didn't choose this as I wanted to stick with AA batteries its also fairly big.

I bought the Kyocera M410R. Check out our pictures we've all been posting

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


Here's a review

http://www.dcmag.co.uk/news/article/mps/UAN/480/v/1/sp/

10x zoom but no IS no manual mode either, the video mode is very good though.but look at the pics.

HTH

Cheers Ian

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Old Jan 22, 2005, 8:12 AM   #3
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Ultra zoom with good movie... that is exactly what the Canon S1 IS is. The camera has a 38-380mm range, it can record movie in 640x480 at 30fps with 16bit of sound(instead of 8), it can zoom during the movie and its limitedto 1gig of movie or 1 hour of recording whichever comes first. 1gig, that's quite good, it means about 12minutes of movie in 640x480 mode.

Besides that, the camera is quite good, it does have some problems to focus in low light conditions... Other than that Camera, I'd suggest the Panasonic FZ3, FZ15 or FZ20... The Minolta Z3 might also be good... but one thing is sure, with an ultra-zoom, I suggets getting IS, so that is why those cameras are all interesting.
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Old Jan 22, 2005, 9:21 AM   #4
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I'll throw in a second vote and agree w/Nicolas - the Canon S1 IS would be perfect for you....

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Old Jan 22, 2005, 11:14 AM   #5
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Panasonic doesn't have [email protected] movie so you have to rule that out if you want good video.

I highly value image stabilization, especially for ultra-zooms (since camera shake is more apparent at high zoom). IS isn't going to eliminate blur (due to camera shake) completely but anything that helps is worth it IMO.

If you want good video and image stabilization, then you are left with the Canon S1 IS and Konica Minolta Z3 (KM announced a new model recently so if you can wait a few months it's worth waiting). Out of those two, the Canon is better (brighter lens, superior video, etc).


I think the best match for your requirements is Canon S1 IS. I have the S1 IS and I think it's a good camera. Its pic quality supposedly isn't as good as the Panasonic Lumix line but if you care about video, you won't find another ultra-zoom that is better.

(Do note that a lot of companies are about to announce new cameras for the photo trade show in February(?) so if you can wait several months, it may be worth waiting. Konica Minolta already announced some models (their new ones are 12x zoom vs 10x now) and Canon/Olympus/etc may announce new ones in Februaray(?). However, the price of new models will be higher than the price of 2004 models. A Canon S1 IS, for example, costs US$100 to $150 (~30% of price) less than when it was released)
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Old Jan 22, 2005, 11:29 AM   #6
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Thanks for the replies, I kind of ruled the Canon out as it is only 3 megapixel, I like to get large prints, and not sure this would be much of an improvement (sizewise) onthe 2.1MP Canon that i have already
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Old Jan 22, 2005, 1:15 PM   #7
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going from 2.1 to 3.2, is actually a far greater increase then going from 3.2 to 4mp. what other features are you looking for in a camera???
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Old Jan 22, 2005, 1:38 PM   #8
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Main features I'm after are a good zoom, good movie mode and battery life, high enough MP rating to be able to crop a picture and still print to a5/a4 size. Must be under £400 max.The canon seems to be everything I want but I just can't convince myself that a 3MP camera is a good idea.
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Old Jan 22, 2005, 1:52 PM   #9
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the m410r is incredibly fast 3.3fps continuous shooting until the card isfull or 2 fps with autofocus until the card is full. it has 10x zoom no image stabilisation but i cant say i have needed it at all, due to the continuous shot mode. it also can go upto iso800, although grainy i think its useable.

The camera never seems to be mentioned and is not well know... yet everyone that uses one loves them. Its worth checking out steves review too. bear in mind the price too.... it is cheap! and small!

my boss has just bought one for £227 so isincredible value.



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Old Jan 24, 2005, 9:09 AM   #10
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Thanks for the replies everyone, I picked up a Fuji 5500 yesterday for the bargain price of £180. I can't believe you can get a camera of that spec for the price, it's amazing!
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