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Old Jun 16, 2005, 11:47 PM   #1
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I have done quite a bit of research now on "ultra-compact" cameras, including looking at Canon, Nikon, Sony, Panasonic, and Casio models. I finally narrowed it down to either the Casio EX-Z750 or the Panasonic DMC-FX7. I went ahead and bought the Casio EX-Z750 two days ago, and have been pleased overall with the performance. Picture quality, however, great as it is, seems to still be lacking in a couple areas: pictures are slightly blurry in some areas, and saturation of colors, especially greens, is very high. I have read at various places, including DPreview and CNET that Panasonic's DMC-FX7 produces outstanding picture quality: crisp and clear. I also like the nice style of the FX7 because it's small and comes in Black. On the other hand, the FX7 also lacks much in the way of manual control compared to what is so well layed-out on the EX-Z750. Now get this: from being in my pocket all day today I find that a piece of dust has worked its way to the center of my LCD on the INSIDE!! I did not expect such a thing to happen so soon. I'm at the point now where I've tested the Casio EX-Z750, but will probably return it to either get the same model with a dustless screen or the Panasonic DMC-FX7. Which one? Maybe some others have done some research into these same two models... I'm leaving soon on vacation with ONE of these cameras, so I'd love to hear your opinion: EX-Z750 or DMC-FX7?
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Old Jun 17, 2005, 11:37 AM   #2
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I just ordered a Z750 – don't have it yet. I hope I don't get dust on the CCD. Another problem some people have with the camera is that if it gets accidentally turned on inside a case you can get lens errors when you use the camera. I plan to glue a small O-ring around the power button to preclude the possibility of its getting turned on accidentally. Many people also report a whine from the LCD being picked up by the mic during movie recording. Evidently new ones don't have the problem and Casio says they will release a firmware soon to correct it.

The FX7 was never a consideration for me. The lack of an eyelevel viewfinder combined with failure of the LCD to gain up properly in low light would make it a nuisance in low light. I use manual mode often on my old C50 and wouldn't be crazy about a pure point and shoot.

In Simon's conclusions at dpreview in the FX7 review he said:
" My biggest complaints are the poor battery life, made worse by the lack of an optical viewfinder and, ironically, the problem of camera shake, which would doubtless make the FX7 unusuable in all but the brightest conditions if it weren't for the image stabilization system."
The stabilization just about makes up for the unsteady hold without an eyelevel viewfinder.

The Z750 is near the top of the compact group in battery life. It will evidently fill a 1Gb card with power left over.

I had narrowed it down to the Sony P200 and Z750 after eliminating the Fuji F10 for a lot of the same reasons as the FX7. I don't use shutter and aperture priority that often in a camera without a hot shoe, but they are nice to have sometimes. Manual exposure on the P200 would probably have been sufficient. Manual focus is something I missed on my C50, so I wanted that. I wouldn't have taken an inferior camera to get it, but the Z750 seems competent.

The buffer in the movie mode on the Z750 seems like a nifty feature. Rather than grind away you can wait for something to happen and then press the record.

Most people who have the Z750 have lowered the saturation and sharpening one notch and like the results. Have you tried that?

I really wish someone had made a competent small camera with stabilization or that Fuji had put their great lens and CCD in a more competent camera. But the Z750 seemed to be the only thing out there that is tiny, has a large LCD for my old eyes, has full exposure and focus modes and an eyelevel viewfinder. I've really grown to like stabilization with my large Panasonic, but am just not willing to put up with the compromises of their small cameras.

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Old Jun 19, 2005, 6:33 PM   #3
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Thanks for the info, Slipe... looks like I'll probably be going with the Z750 after all. If any one else out there has opinions on either the Z750 or the FX7 please speak now, for I will be making my final decision soon! Thanks
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