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Old Jun 15, 2006, 1:57 AM   #1
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Does anyone have experience with the Panasonic TZ1?I'm trying to decide on a new camera to upgrade from my Canon S1 (3.2 MP; 10x zoom) and my Canon S400 (4 MP; 3x zoom).I like that the TZ1 (5 MP; 10x zoom) is compact, has 10x zoom and image stabilization.* However, I know there are some complaints about image quality.Any suggestions on what camera to get next???
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Old Jun 15, 2006, 8:28 PM   #2
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Please help if you can...Thanks
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Old Jun 16, 2006, 10:27 PM   #3
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I've had the TZ1 for about 2 weeks now. I also tried the Casio EX-S600, Canon SD700IS and Fuji F10, and decided to keep the TZ1.

Panasonics in general do seem to have the reputation of "above average noise". My experience with the TZ1 is that noise is easily visible in ISO400 pictures at 100% size, and also not difficult to find on ISO200 pictures at 100% size. If you are just printing out 4x6 pictures, or viewing them on your computer monitor at normal size, it isn't bad. (Unless you have one of those 30-inch 2560x1600 LCD monitors, you won't be viewing pictures at anywhere near 100% size.) With normal outdoor situation you'd be taking mostly ISO80 / ISO 100 pictures, and noise is not a problem at those speeds. I'd avoid using ISO800 and ISO1600 modes. You should search the web for TZ1 reviews, look at the sample pictures and decide for yourself.

I should mention that all other aspects of picture quality (e.g. color fidelity, purple fringe) are just fine with the TZ1.

With your experience on your 2 previous cameras, you should have a very good idea of what you want for your next camera, e.g. do you need a compact / ultra-compact, or are bigger sizes okay? You should know very well whether you need/want a 10x zoom or not. If you need a compact ultrazoom, there are very little choices: TZ1, Kodak V610, (Nikon Coolpix S4?); and only the TZ1 has optical stabilization. Obviously I prefer the TZ1 over the others. If you don't need a pocket ultrazoom, I'm sure there are better choices than the TZ1 for you, depending on what your major needs/wants are. If you need/want a pocket ultrazoom, then carefully examine the TZ1 sample pictures on the web and decide if the picture quality meets your standard.

My own major need is actually "better video mode" (and must be pocket-size), and the TZ1 is one of the few models (all Panasonics) that take 848x480 30fps videos. (Canon S80 takes 1024x768 video but 15fps only -- too choppy.) The rest of the features (10x zoom, optical zoom while taking videos, optical image stabilization) were icing on the cake for me. I didn't know that I "need" a 10x zoom before, but now I am having fun with it. I spend some time examining the picture quality, and determined that they are fine with me. I am also getting to appreciate some of the other "little" things more and more -- the big (for a pocket-size cam) lens, the feel of the tough metal case, the high resolution LCD, lens that won't zoom out if the camera got accidentally turned on in my pocket, etc.

Some other digicam web forums have more TZ1 "fans". (I don't want to "advertize" potential "competitors"; you can search the web.)

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Old Jun 17, 2006, 10:06 AM   #4
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I have had my TZ-1 for a month and I really like the camera a lot. Here is a nice photo sample for you. Overhead the pool table is a huge metal light fixture.

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Old Jun 17, 2006, 10:16 AM   #5
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Here is another TZ-1 sample photo taken at ISO 800 without flash.

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Old Jun 19, 2006, 2:30 PM   #6
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Thanks sslu and mtclimber for the help. * I still haven't made a purchase yet.* *I think what is attracting me to the camera more than anything else is how it feels in my hand.* I can hold it comfortably* with one hand and shoot without touching any buttons on the back...while also being small enough to keep in a pocket.
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