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Old Jun 29, 2005, 11:58 PM   #1
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I'm just getting into photography and digital photography more specifically and at the moment I have a Kodak CX7330 that was given to me. I'm starting to use it and realizing that the lense, zoom, and everything else about it is subpar to what I'm looking for.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Acamera with many different scene modes is important because I'm going to be taking a variety of different shots and a 10x to 12x zoom is also necessary (The 3x just isn't cutting it).

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"I work for a electronic retail store and everyday I check out the cameras to try and get a feel for what I like the most with the features i'm needing and I thought I found the camera for me.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"I really like the Panasonic DMC-FZ5. The optical stabilizer, zoom, and many scene modes are exactly what I'm looking for. My problem is that we also have one last Panasonic DMC-FZ20 which does have a larger body but that's one of the few differences I could tell.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"I've worked out a deal that I could land the DMC-FZ20 for under 350, so my question is should I run with that?

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Does anyone have suggestions to why I should get the FZ5 over the FZ20? Or go with another camera entirely?

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"I'm looking to stay in the $500 price range.

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

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Chip
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Old Jun 29, 2005, 11:59 PM   #2
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Don't know how I managed to butcher that one...



Sorry about that
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Old Jun 30, 2005, 3:47 AM   #3
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"My problem is that we also have one last Panasonic DMC-FZ20 which does have a larger body but that's one of the few differences I could tell."

The FZ20 has a flash hot shoe and manual focus, also.
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Old Jun 30, 2005, 10:53 AM   #4
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I think the FZ20 is the more competent camera if the size isn't a factor to you. Not that the FZ5 isn't an excellent camera.

If you are taking a zoom shot in shadow the extra half f-stop would be of value. You have a stronger built-in flash on the FZ20. And the manual focus can be handy in difficult situations. The hot shoe which lets you get better quality flash shots with a relatively inexpensive flash attachment is also a feature.

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Old Jun 30, 2005, 11:12 AM   #5
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Chip48 wrote:
Quote:
Don't know how I managed to butcher that one...



Sorry about that
Don't worry about that. There is something wrong with the way this site works, and this happens by itself on occasion.It's not your fault...

PhilR.
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Old Jun 30, 2005, 12:01 PM   #6
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Since you are somewhat new to photography it is more difficult to give
more of an objective opinion rather than a specific one regarding your
two excellent camera options. Most experienced users would opt for the
FZ20 simply because of the additional features. The hotshoe, manual focus
and more dsl size/feel.etc. That being said, you are the only one that
can determine your anticipated need of features, but the simple fact is
if you find the camera is uncomfortable to take on your photo outings and
leave it sitting on the shelf at home, then it would not be a good buy for
you and better be served with the smaller FZ5. Thats a super good price
for a new fz20 and would serve you well for an extended time. If you could
determine if its the one that fits your hands and you don't mind the
additional size to transport, then it's a winner for you could grow with both
knowledge, skill, fun, and outstanding pics.
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Old Jun 30, 2005, 4:43 PM   #7
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The replies and excellent advice are much appreciated. The size is not a factor and now that I think about I do remember seeing the Auto and Manual focus on the FZ20.

Another question that I had was that when I zoom in all the way, keep in mind that these are just things I've been trying in the store which is probably not the best place to test out a camera, there was still quite a bit of shake in the pictures. Should I attribute the shake to my untrained hand or is it something inherent in the zoom? I figured with the optical stabilizer I wouldn't have that problem, so does this come from something I'm doing wrong?
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Old Jun 30, 2005, 5:03 PM   #8
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There are two types of stabilization on the camera. Type I is not quite as effective for the photos but it stabilizes the viewfinder. Type II is a little stronger and doesn't stabilize the viewfinder. I like the viewfinder dancing to remind me to work harder at stabilizing the hold on the camera.

Take a look at the shutter speed. the standard shutter speed you need with a 420mm eq lens non-stabilized is about 1/400. Most people claim stabilization is good for only two stops and maybe a little more. Some of the manufacturers are claiming 3 f-stops. 2 would be 1/100 and you would be very unlikely to generate that inside. I think 1/60 is probably about the best you could get really sharp shots from, and I doubt you are getting that either inside unless the light is extremely good. Burst mode helps as there are moments of null hand movement. But you have to be realistic about what stabilization will accomplish.

You have to cup your left hand under the lens with both elbows in your chest. Trying to hold it by the ends doesn't work very well because of the design.

Keep in mind that the FZ5 would be more of a problem at full zoom inside because the shutter speed would be only 2/3 of what the FZ20 is generating.

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Old Jul 2, 2005, 11:14 AM   #9
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An amazing thing about "seeing shake in the pictures" through the viewfinder is that although at full zoom it's very difficult for any human to hold the camera steady enough to see a stable frame, nonetheless, the OIS system can most often snatch a sharp shot from it anyway. I happen to prefer Mode 1, just to see a more stable framing situation for my shaky old body, but even in Mode 2, when the frame can look jittery and even blurry, I still can get a sharp capture, more often than not.
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