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Old Mar 3, 2005, 3:37 PM   #1
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OK,



I've read and read and then read some more and as with many people I still just can't decide. I'm looking for a 10-12x zoom camera for pictures at the dragstrip mostly. Most pictures will be taken in the pits or at the starting line (car moving some but the camera still). I'm often in the spectator stands or far enough down track that the larger zoom cameras would really be appreciated. Mostly day shots but I'm sure I'd sneak in a few night shots as well.



I am very much so a novice but do own a digicam already. I have a Kodak DX7630, which I really like. I like the large LCD, which may not be the largest concearn to many but I really like it. I find the multiple preset scene modes very useful to a novice like myself. I like the size of the camera body as it fits my somewhat large hands. The picture quality seems very good to me and my wife finds it easy to use. All good things but it lacks in the zoom department terribly.



Knowing that I like the 7630 so much I've considered picking up a Kodak DX7590 for the much better 10x (38-380mm) zoom. With Kodak's current rebate ($50) it can be had for around $330. I think overall I'd be very happy with that camera and with my inexperience I'm most likely not know any different without using other cameras. However a couple of Panasonic digicams look to be better in terms of overall zoom and photo quality at longer zoom ranges.



The FZ10, FZ15 and FZ3 all look to be good options. I found a good amount of writing on the FZ3 and some notes about the FZ15 but really have not looked at the FZ10. Should I consider it?



The following link and others had good info about the FZ3 and cameras in general…



http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/view_topic.php?id=36177&forum_id=87&highli ght=fz15



Good info there…thanks.



So my dilemma is naturally which camera to go for? The 7590, FZ15, FZ3, FZ10?


Thanks for the help!
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Old Mar 4, 2005, 10:27 AM   #2
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Your question is one that many of us are considering right now. You might also want to look at the newly announced Lumix FZ 4,FZ5 and Konica Dimage Z5 as alternatives. I know i am anxiously awaiting full tests if these cameras before deciding.

I know i am looking hard at the actual length of time that elapses between pushing the shutter and taking the picture ( auto=focus time and shutter release time) as well as the shot to shot (recovery) time. Also a consideration is the ability of the viewfinder to "see" in low light situations. If you wear glasses then you want a viewfinder with an adjustable diopter which these three have.

AA batteries vs a specialty battery is not that big a deal anymore since the new batteries are not that expensive and take a lot of pictures. I actually like the proprietary batteries since they tend to weigh less as well as it is easier to carry one spare vs 4 .

I believe the lenses are comparable in the above units as are the lens stabilization corrections.



Good Luck
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Old Mar 5, 2005, 9:44 PM   #3
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Check out the Panasonic forum. I have the FZ20, amazing camera! If you are going to buy a "super" zoom camera do NOT get one without Image Stabilization-period. The Panasonics take beautiful pictures and you can get an array of tele/WA/Macro lens for them down the road. I can'tbelieve how well the IS works either even at full zoom-handheld. Gerry
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Old Mar 7, 2005, 4:20 PM   #4
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Thanks

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"I've been checking out the panasonic forums here and did find that people are generally happy with the FZ cameras. I don't have a major preference about batteries so that won't rule out a camera. I would like to keep that SD memory because I have several of them already, which is nice if I do go with a panasonic. Also as always budget comes into play and because this would be my second camera in less than one year I'd prefer to get a better deal on an older model than spend more to get the newest thing, unless there is good reason to;-)

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"I'll check out the Konica's as well...thanks.
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Old Mar 25, 2005, 11:06 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies. I picked upan FZ3 tonight. I hope to take some shots with it next week.
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Old Mar 26, 2005, 3:16 AM   #6
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I have an FZ10, and I'm very happy with it; however, with your stated inexperience level, I think you made the right choice with the FZ3. One thing that none of your choices would probably do well is night shots at the drag strip. You need a fast shutter speed to freeze movement; however, slower shutter speeds are required at night in order to let more light in.
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Old Mar 26, 2005, 1:16 PM   #7
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Does any of the FZ range accept tele converters? Also Minolta Z5 . henry b.
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Old Mar 26, 2005, 2:05 PM   #8
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"Does any of the FZ range accept tele converters?"

Yes, I bought the Pemaraal adapter with 58mm threads for my FZ10 and use a Sony 1.7 teleconverter as well as their .7 wide angle converter. The discontinued Olympus B300 and current Olympus TCON-17 with 55mm threads can be used, also, and are much lighter than the Sony lenses. I'm sure the lenses on the smaller FZ cameras are threaded as well although I don't remember the thread size.
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Old Mar 26, 2005, 2:16 PM   #9
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I just checked Steve's review of the FZ3. It comes with a two-part lens shade which consists of a petal-shaped shade and an adapter ring with 55mm threads to which you can attach filters or a teleconverter. The TCON-17 should be idealfor it. At around $300, the FZ3 is a bargain.
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Old Mar 27, 2005, 12:14 AM   #10
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Check the Panasonic forums for a thread about a metal adaptor ring that replaces the stock plastic unit to better handle tele lenses. Though I've seen it posted that the Tcon17 isn't too much for the stock items if handled properly the metel unit would be better.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Lucky,

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"So far, after only a few shots to check it out some, I'm very happy with it. I'm sure I'll be even happier with some experimenting and time. I'm also not very concearned about night shots at the dragstrip. I'm sure I'll take some but the majority of the shots I see myself really wanting will be during the day. I also expect there to be less action shots of cars actually going down the track than in the pits and right at the starting line. Hopefully I'll be at the track next month to find out how well the FZ3 suits me.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Thanks for the replies!
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