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Old Apr 12, 2005, 5:59 PM   #1
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Hello,

I am looking at the following cameras as a first DC. I would like easy operation, good picture quality and a long zoom. I would like to keep the budget around $400US. The camera will be a general use family camera with both indoor and outdoor shots taken. My current camera is a Pentax ME Super and my wife's camera is a Canon AE-1, so you know what we are used to. Most pictures will probably be printed at 4x6, but some larger prints are also possible.

Thanks,

Steve
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Old Apr 12, 2005, 6:18 PM   #2
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I like the versatility a long zoom gives, and I also like to have image stabilization (IS) as well, which will help in those occasions when there isn't enough light to get the high shutter speed normally needed when shooting at high zoom levels. IS will also help you to shoot handheld at one or two speeds lower than what you could manage without. To that end, I would consider the "mega-zooms" that have IS too, which means the Panny's, or perhaps the Minolta Z3/5. I'm not sure if the FZ15 can be had in your price range, but if so, you might like it because it comes closest in mimicing a regular slr. Personally, I gave up the manual barrel focusing of the FZ15 for the much smaller size of the FZ3.

PhilR.
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Old Apr 12, 2005, 6:41 PM   #3
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PhilR,

The FZ3 is a possibility as well. However, I have found the FZ15 for only about $40 more and was thinking it would be the better buy. After reading some other threads, I see that the FZ3 can also meet my requirements.

Steve
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Old Apr 12, 2005, 7:08 PM   #4
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Based on your description, I think you will be able to find a long zoom camera tofit your needs. There are a lot of good choices out there.

From my experiences I would have to go with the Oly C770. A great 10x optical zoom lens, with a small size which makes it easy to stick in a coat pocket or brief case for travel or outdoor work, and the video is super -almost enough to make you sell your video camcorder. It's a good package, and most reviews give the picture quality edge to Oly. It's also an excellent indoor camera; it has a hotshoe, so you are not limited to just its built in flash.

Whenever I pick up a a Pana, it feels so bulky compared to the feel of the Oly.

Good luck in your hunt.

Steve R
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