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Old Mar 10, 2006, 7:21 PM   #1
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Hi everybody,

here's the deal: I went to a local camera shop with the semi-firmintentionof buying the FZ30 because I had heard good things about it. It sells for 695 euros with a 1 Gb mem card in this neck of woods.

However, it turns out the shop also has a special price for the Nikon D50 at the moment, it's 599 euros with 18-50 Sigma objective (whatever that is?) It sounds tempting.

I am an absolute beginner with cameras, so I would appreciate any opinions on which camera I should choose. As it is my first camera, price and ease of use are important factors. What I mostly will be using the camera for is to shoot pictures of small objects such as miniatures and plastic models, so a good macro is a plus. Of course, I would use the camera for general shooting as well.

Thanks in advance!




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Old Mar 10, 2006, 8:27 PM   #2
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While the Nikon D-50 does indeed have an Automatic Mode, it is a much more complex camera than a point and shoot camera and a much better camera IMHO due to the fact that you have the ability to interchange lenses. However, those additional lenses also add to the expense total.

So you must first decide if you are willing to consider a dSLR camera.

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Old Mar 10, 2006, 11:07 PM   #3
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It depends on what pictures are pleasing to you. I personally didn't care for the pictures I took with my FZ30, though others have taken lovely pictures with the same model. You might look at the other Panasonics (FZ20or FZ5), which (again, just my opinion) seem to have slightly better quality photos than what I was getting (but don't have some of the features that the FZ30 has). If you are taking pictures in good light, the FZ30 will give you nice pictures.

Just my opinion, but I don't think any of the fixed lens cameras will give you as good quality photo as a dSLR (as to do with the size of the sensor). Butare you that picky?Many people are very happy with the photo quality from their fixed lens cameras - take a lookaround at some of the other forums where examples are posted.

Itis all subjective - if you will be happy with what you get from a fixed lens camera, then save your money, get one and have fun taking photos. Any dSLR will cost you more in the long run (lenses get expensive) and will be much more frustrating to get right for someone without a photography background.

So how much do you want to learn about photography? If you don't want to learn about photography, just take snaps, then get the FZ30. If you want something to learn more on then get the FZ30 - you can always upgrade to a dSLR later if you decide that you want more than the FZ30. If you want the absolute best quality pictures you can get right now, then get the Nikon but plan on spending lots of time reading about photography terms, and principles, and be prepared to buy more lenses later on.
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 4:31 AM   #4
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I have no particular aversion for learning the technical side of the camera in the long run, and I rather suspect that with macro photography of small itemsthe automatic settings won't give me an optimal result anyway, so fiddling with aperture sizes and exposuretimeswill berequired eventually? Is my hunch correct? And you can manually set these on the FZ30 as well, right?

I understand that a DSLR is a more long term project in terms of learning to use it and cost, but on the other sideit will also last me a longer time due to it's versatility.

And like I said, the price seems very good on the D50. What about the lense that comes with it, the 15-80 Sigma? How good is that for macro shooting?






















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Old Mar 11, 2006, 4:37 AM   #5
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Have you had a look at the Fuji S9000? It's somewhat a compromise between the FZ30 and the D50...

photos:

http://www.digicamfotos.de/4images/c...php?cat_id=514


http://www.pbase.com/cameras/fujifil...pix_s9000_zoom
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 10:09 AM   #6
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The Sigma 15-80mm lens offered to you with the Nikon D-50 will not take the kind of macro shots that a P&S camera can take. A widely accepted macro lens for the Nikon D-50 is the Nikkor 60mm macro. Thus a second lens would be required to do macro shots. The Fuji S-9000/S-9500 is more adapted to doing close range macro shots.

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Old Mar 11, 2006, 10:36 AM   #7
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So with a D50 I am looking to spend another 400-600 euros on the macro?

I take it you recommend Fuji S-9000 for macro shooting over the Panasonic FZ30, MT?

BTW: is s9000 the same as s9500?
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 11:58 AM   #8
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Yes, it is the same cam. The S9500 has nice macro and wide-angle capabilities as well as a 10x zoom (28-300mm). If it is better for macro shots than the FZ30 I don't know, but for me it offers the better "package", though it is not as easy to handle (for beginners) as the Pana.
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Old Mar 11, 2006, 12:06 PM   #9
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Ron-

Yes, I know of two persons who are using the Fuji S-9000/S-9500 for doing rather precise macro photos of small electronic components that are published in their promotional stock book. Yes, the S-9000 and the S-9500 are the very same camera. Here in the USA it is called the S-9000, while in Europe, Fuji sells the very same camera as the S-9500.

And for clarity sake: Yes, it you desired to do macro photos at a close distance with the nikon D-50, you would have to purchase an additional lens.

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Old Mar 11, 2006, 12:17 PM   #10
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I wouldn't say that the Fuji has asignificantly bettermacro capability than the Panasonic. ItIS better in low light/fast shutter speedconditions if you aren't into manipulating your own photos (the Panasonic doesn't do much noise reduction, so you'd have to do it yourself). It seems to me that both cameras have equal functionality (ability to adjust settings etc.).

If you don't mind a slow shutter speed (use a tripod) or have lots of light, you can take OK macros. Here's an example I took (and remember, I ended up selling mine after a month for a dSLR). If something like this is pleasing to you, and you like the weight/size and where the functions are on the Panasonic, then get it. If you don't want to learn a photo manipulation software, or if you prefer the feel of the Fuji, then get that one - either one will give you good quality photos. If you want better quality than this, buy the Nikon.


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