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frumious
10-06-2005, 12:59 AM
I opened the box of a new FZ 30 last night. After one day of trying out my new FZ30 in A-B comparisons with my trusty FZ20, here are my initial impressions:

Weight: Somewhat heavier than the FZ20, the FZ30 is a two-handed or tripod operated camera. The additional depth of the grip helps to compensate for the extra weight. I am interested to see how my wrists feel after a long session of handheld shooting.

Size: A little larger – but a familiar feel. The lens barrel is about the length of a fully extended FZ20 with a couple of filters.

Zoom Ring vs Zoom Toggle: It’s been a long time since I’ve used a zoom ring. I’ve become accustomed to the W/T toggles. It will take me some time to get reacquainted.

Complexity? While the FZ30 can be used for point and click right out of the box, enjoying the full benefits of this camera will take some study and practice. This camera has a moderate learning curve – and I am just at the beginning of it. The zoom and focus rings guarantee that your left hand will do more than just support the camera’s ample lens. As I said before, this is a two handed camera – two active hands. Photographers who use SLR’s or DSLR’s are going to feel right at home with the FZ30. While the function buttons and menus are intuitively designed and similar to the FZ20, there are a couple of new dials that I have yet to play with. Additionally there are several new preset modes to explore. Access to the Macro mode is via a switch on the lens barrel, not on the Mode Dial.

Low light: Low light operation and photos are the FZ20’s Achilles’ heel. The FZ30 offers significant improvement. At identical settings, the FZ30 produces a much brighter low light photos without flash than the FZ20. The auto-focus light is now in a location where your hand will not block it. The LCD and EVF can “see in the dark” compared to the FZ20. The shutter stays open as long as a minute compared to only 8 seconds on the FZ20. You will be taking handheld pictures well into dusk.

Picture Clarity: I cannot yet report about shots in full daylight as, thus far, I have shot in low light only. In low light, the improvements in clarity are easily apparent throughout the camera’s 1MP - 8MP resolution range. Ditto on color rendition. The auto white balance seems to be getting it right thus far. My FZ20’s auto white balance in low light was not always correct. The LCD and EVF are much sharper – another big plus in low light situations.

Quick to the Shot: While I never complained about the FZ20’s agility, this new camera’s speed is something to behold. Instead of the FZ20’s five-second turn on and shut down time, the FZ30 is ready for you by the time you get the camera to your eye – one second. There is no discernable shutter lag. The focus speed is remarkably snappy too. In this important regard, the FZ30’s performance has become similar to an SLR or DSLR.

What about Noise? I have yet to shoot in full light so I am hedging my report a bit. Having read many comments posted here I expected the worst. I am relieved: The noise level of the FZ30 is about the same as the FZ20 - with one advantage for the FZ30 - read on: I shot at ISO 80 and 400 in low light with both cameras. In low light conditions there was no apparent noise at ISO 80 on the FZ30. At ISO 400 there was noise on both cameras – akin to using ASA 400 film. Here is something that makes ISO 400 usable on the FZ30 (I never use it on the FZ20): ISO 400 noise is greatly reduced when the shots are taken at settings below 8MP. At 3MP the noise is much reduced – low enough to clean up sharply with Neat Image. At 1MP there is virtually no noise. Remember: my shots were in low light; low light shots produce the worst noise. If this is the worst this camera does, I’ll be a happy camper.

Extended Zoom: Contrary to a few comments I have read, the extended optical zoom, (available when shooting at less than 8MP) really does provide clearer shots than digital enlargement. The 19x optical enlargement at 3MP is pretty impressive. For kicks the camera can then multiply that 19x by 4x digitally (similar to enlarging with Photoshop) and give you an eye-popping 76x! I can’t wait to try out the FZ30's Leica optics on a clear day.

Battery life: So far, so good. Not an issue. I purchased a spare. Recharging is very quick.

Flash: Like the FZ20: Good to 20+ feet.

Fit and Finish: Tight tolerances, smoothly operating rings and dials. Similar to the FZ20.

Price: $530. Same price I paid a year ago for my FZ20. For today’s best price Google: Lumix FZ30 price

That's my first day. A good start. I hope you find this helpful. I'll post more as I gain experience with the FZ30.

genece
10-06-2005, 04:51 AM
Now that is exactly the way I see my FZ30, I am glad at least a few of us got good FZ30s.
And I can assure you the results in good light are at least as good.
It is really a great camera.
It would have been better with less noise, but for most of us the noise is not a problem.
The FZ10 was a good camera, the FZ15 and 20 were better and the FZ30 is another step ahead.


.

frumious
10-06-2005, 05:14 AM
I have enjoyed reading your posts this past year. I trust your posts and those of John Reed not only because they are consistently accurate but because they are of a generous spirit that is encouraging to those new to the cameras and forum. I am very glad that you purchased the FZ30. I know I will have a fabulous "consultant" and compadre.

Best to you.

Paladin24
10-06-2005, 09:40 AM
frumious.........

Thank you for your very insightful post. Very well written and extremely comprehensive! ;)

It will be a huge motivator for the fence-sitters. :rolleyes:

IMHO, your post deserves a 5-star rating......which is what I gave you.

John_Reed
10-06-2005, 12:15 PM
I have enjoyed reading your posts this past year. I trust your posts and those of John Reed not only because they are consistently accurate but because they are of a generous spirit that is encouraging to those new to the cameras and forum. I am very glad that you purchased the FZ30. I know I will have a fabulous "consultant" and compadre.

Best to you.Hmmmm....Do I detect a hint of Lewis Carroll in your screen name? (Something about a Jabberwocky?) ;)

I'm glad that you've been able to draw on this forum as a resource, and to have been a part of your resources. Now you are one yourself, and thanks for your post! I agree with you and Gene, this is one impressive camera!

tim11
10-06-2005, 05:14 PM
Frumious: Thanks for the journal. I will be first in line to buy the novel when it comes out.

frumious
10-07-2005, 02:20 AM
Paladin, John and Tim -

Thank you for your positive feedback. I enjoy and learn alot from this forum. Only sorry that I have not posted more.

John - Yes, Lewis Carroll's "Jabberwocky" is the correct source of my screen name. If you encounter a "Bandersnatch" online, that is me as well. The poem is a family favorite: http://www.jabberwocky.com/carroll/jabber/jabberwocky.html

Today I started experimenting with the FZ30's front and rear dials - new features not on the FZ20. What a great idea. This makes it so much easier to experiment with Depth of Field. This weekend a friend and I are going to take our cameras out for a day of scenic shooting. He has a Canon Rebel. I'm sure that we will be trading off cameras, comparing shot quaity, ease of use, versatility, etc.. I'll let you know how the camera's compare in the field. I am going to try the RAW mode. I purchased a copy of Adobe Photoshop Elements and downloaded the new Camera RAW3.2 plug-in.

dev
10-07-2005, 05:46 AM
The only thing this story needs is pictures.

John_Reed
10-07-2005, 07:45 AM
Gimme a photo of a JubJub Bird, pronto!;)

dev
10-07-2005, 08:20 AM
Here's one of my cat. NOW it's a five star thread. :D

John_Reed
10-07-2005, 10:15 AM
Thanks for posting it. FZ?? ?

dev
10-07-2005, 12:13 PM
Thanks for posting it. FZ?? ?

20. When the 30 came out, I rejected the idea of upgrading because of the noise issue. But I have to admit, the more pics I see taken with it, the more impressed I am.
I was only half kidding about posting pics, I really would like to see these low light shots.

frumious
10-07-2005, 10:54 PM
Dev, John, Tim, Gene, Paladin and others-

I would be glad to post the pictures - I've never tried this before - hope it works. The original pictures ranged from 337KB to 3.8MB. I have had to shrink them here to fit the forum's size limits. This limits our ability to look at them up close. However, even shrunk and compressed, there will be no mistaking the differences between the FZ20 and FZ30.

Here are the first two comparative shots. They demonsrate the difference in image brightness between the two cameras at the same settings. The first is from the FZ20. The second is from the FZ30. Both were shot at ISO 80 in Program ("P") mode at F2.8. Both were shot from a tripod with a 2 second delay with the OIS on Mode #2 to avoid shake. Both were Auto White Balance. Both had all four Picture Adjustments (Menu) set to Standard. Both were shot at their respective highest resolution, largest size and highest quality. Both are moderately zoomed to 4x optical.

If these come through on the post, I will post the others.

Frumious

John_Reed
10-07-2005, 11:25 PM
It's interesting that you're saying that at the same settings, the FZ30 is registering more light than the FZ20. I wonder if you could equate that to, say, a higher ISO setting on the FZ20 to equal the light-gathering power of the FZ30 at ISO 80? If you set the FZ20 at auto ISO, its ISO would be bumped up, but by how much?

I use a web-hosting site, http://www.smugmug.com. I upload my full-sized photos to Smugmug, and after uploading, each image has a unique URL, which can be pasted here for viewing. Since it's just a short hypertext link, taking up very little space, it allows you to post any size photo you want, without that PITA re-sizing to try to make it under the small file size limit of this site. Should you decide to go that route, I'd appreciate your using my referral number if you sign up there, which saves both you and me some $$: KbqSTTveOkoqg

frumious
10-07-2005, 11:28 PM
OK. That worked. The FZ30 took a brighter shot than the FZ20. All shots were take under the same incandescent light.

On to the next comparison: Same settings as above but zoomed in to 12x optical - the optical zoom limits of each camera at their highest resolution. Again, the first is the FZ20.

A couple of things to observe in these shots: Again the relative brightness. Also look at the difference in color rendition. Notice too, the contrast in the shutter of the Lumix LZ-2 taken by the FZ30; compare it to the FZ20 shot.

Interestingly, what is going on here is that the FZ30 is boosting the brightness and doing a good job anticipating the proper color. What you can not see is that the actual light and color for the shot was much closer to what the FZ20 shows. I'm very happy with the FZ30's boost.

Oh yes, about the Lumix LZ-2 in the shot: This is my other Panasonic Lumix. I love this little camera! I keep it in my car and slip it in my pocket in case a photo-op presents itself unexpectedly. It is the only pocket-size 6x 5MP optical-image stabilized camera on the market. It takes very good snap shots and its Marco mode is simple to use. This little gem should be getting a lot more attention. Ridiculously affordable: $230.

Coming next comparative noise shots ....

frumious
10-08-2005, 01:13 AM
These two shots are taken at the same settings as the prior shots except that the ISO has been set to 400.

I'm afraid these pictures are not going to help the discussion about noise. Why not? The process of reducing the pictures to fit the Forum's image size limit renders invisible the noise differences between the two photos. (Darn!)

Here is what you can not see: At ISO 400 both cameras produced a noticeable amount of noise. I really can not say which produces more noise, but I can see that the nature of the noise of each of the pictures is different. The FZ20 noise is a patterning of the pixels - in some places a houndstooth pattern. The FZ30 noise is the addition of foreign colored pixels - particularly blue speckles. In the attachments here, these details can not be discerned.

So I guess those skeptical about the noise level of the FZ30 will have to look at non-compressed, non-resized shots to make the comparison. To my eye, the enlarged originals show different types of noise, not greater or lesser amounts.

One thing you can see here is that the FZ20 does just what you would expect it to do at ISO 400: It takes a lighter picture.

The FZ30 picture, however, does not become lighter. I am at a loss to explain why not.

I have one last set of comparison pictures from this set that I want to share. These will show what happens when you shoot with each camera set to a lower resolution. Stay tuned.....

frumious
10-08-2005, 02:20 AM
What I had hoped to show is that with the FZ30 the amount of noise at ISO 400 diminishes as the number of pixels in the shot was reduced. Alas, as above, the shrinking and compressing of these shots erases the noise.

So I will just give a quick comparison of what happens to the maximum optical zoom range when the number of pixels shot are reduced. These two shots use optical zoom only.

The first shot is, again, the FZ20. It has been shot at a smaller dimension and at a smaller file size. The second shot, the FZ30, has been shot at 1MP.

The FZ20 stays at 12x. The FZ30 is able to "extend" optically to 19x.

Once again, I apologize that the noise comparison can not be demontrated with these attached shots because the shrinkage and compression required to post them alters the pictures too much to allow a meaningful noise comparison. (sigh)

My last two shots are for amusement: They show the outrageous range of the FZ30 zoom: The third attached shot is taken with no zoom (at 1x). The final attached shot is the "extended" optical 19x zoom multiplied by the built in 4x digital. That calculates to 76x! Yikes!

Enjoy.

Billy@Martin
10-08-2005, 05:16 AM
I have owned an FZ1 (still do) 10/2 x20s/5 and now a 30..All the highly amusing misinformation and conjecture about noise and many other 30 'attributes' are in my humble opinion 'codswollop'..The 30 is one hell of a camera..
Cheers
Billy
Some of my 'proof' can be found here...
http://wigandia.smugmug.com/gallery/851790
also late September at the same site!
P.S. If you don't like plant/garden photography..don't look!!

John_Reed
10-08-2005, 07:30 AM
These two shots are taken at the same settings as the prior shots except that the ISO has been set to 400.

I'm afraid these pictures are not going to help the discussion about noise. Why not? The process of reducing the pictures to fit the Forum's image size limit renders invisible the noise differences between the two photos. (Darn!)

Here is what you can not see: At ISO 400 both cameras produced a noticeable amount of noise. I really can not say which produces more noise, but I can see that the nature of the noise of each of the pictures is different. The FZ20 noise is a patterning of the pixels - in some places a houndstooth pattern. The FZ30 noise is the addition of foreign colored pixels - particularly blue speckles. In the attachments here, these details can not be discerned.

So I guess those skeptical about the noise level of the FZ30 will have to look at non-compressed, non-resized shots to make the comparison. To my eye, the enlarged originals show different types of noise, not greater or lesser amounts.

One thing you can see here is that the FZ20 does just what you would expect it to do at ISO 400: It takes a lighter picture.

The FZ30 picture, however, does not become lighter. I am at a loss to explain why not.

I have one last set of comparison pictures from this set that I want to share. These will show what happens when you shoot with each camera set to a lower resolution. Stay tuned.....It seems like you have an "ISO discrepancy" at ISO 80, that is, the FZ20 under-exposes, the FZ30 gets it about right. Then, at ISO 400, the "discrepancy" disappears. Can you post the full EXIF files for the 4 shots? Thanks for your comparisons!

John_Reed
10-08-2005, 07:34 AM
I have owned an FZ1 (still do) 10/2 x20s/5 and now a 30..All the highly amusing misinformation and conjecture about noise and many other 30 'attributes' are in my humble opinion 'codswollop'..The 30 is one hell of a camera..
Cheers
Billy
Some of my 'proof' can be found here...
http://wigandia.smugmug.com/gallery/851790
also late September at the same site!
P.S. If you don't like plant/garden photography..don't look!!Just a garden-variety photographer from Australia? Welcome aboard, Billy! You're right about this FZ30 marque - it's a brilliant piece of work.

genece
10-08-2005, 07:53 AM
Billy I did not think I would ever hear you say that....But I agree on the one good camera.

Glad to see your still around.

Gene



I have owned an FZ1 (still do) 10/2 x20s/5 and now a 30..All the highly amusing misinformation and conjecture about noise and many other 30 'attributes' are in my humble opinion 'codswollop'..The 30 is one hell of a camera..
Cheers
Billy
Some of my 'proof' can be found here...
http://wigandia.smugmug.com/gallery/851790
also late September at the same site!
P.S. If you don't like plant/garden photography..don't look!!

frumious
10-08-2005, 10:20 AM
It seems like you have an "ISO discrepancy" at ISO 80, that is, the FZ20 under-exposes, the FZ30 gets it about right. Then, at ISO 400, the "discrepancy" disappears. Can you post the full EXIF files for the 4 shots? Thanks for your comparisons!

John -

I would be glad to post the full EXIF files. I've never done this before. How do I do it?

I can't explain why the FZ20 handles ISO 80 vs 400 one way in low light and the FZ30 handles it in another way. But I like the results of the FZ30. One thing I did not notice yesterday but have since observed is that while the FZ20 remains at F2.8 regardless of how tightly one zooms, the FZ30 changes F-stop gradually as one zooms from no-zoom (F 2.8) through 4x optical (F 3.5) to 12x optical (F3.7).

Also: Thank you for your direction to the web-hosting site, http://www.smugmug.com. When I get a moment, I will look up the site and see what is involved. If I join, I will use your referral #.

By the way, I've been finding a number of your shots posted on other threads. Very nice! I particularly like the pano of Sedona.

I'm running out the door to try my first full-light shots on the FZ30.

Still on a steep learning curve.......

linux-works
10-08-2005, 02:05 PM
I have owned an FZ1 (still do) 10/2 x20s/5 and now a 30..All the highly amusing misinformation and conjecture about noise and many other 30 'attributes' are in my humble opinion 'codswollop'..The 30 is one hell of a camera..


yes, according to rumor, the fz30 can produce some halfway passable pics.

but also according to rumor, the fz30 is twice the camera the fz15 is.

;)

John_Reed
10-08-2005, 02:44 PM
John -

I would be glad to post the full EXIF files. I've never done this before. How do I do it?

I can't explain why the FZ20 handles ISO 80 vs 400 one way in low light and the FZ30 handles it in another way. But I like the results of the FZ30. One thing I did not notice yesterday but have since observed is that while the FZ20 remains at F2.8 regardless of how tightly one zooms, the FZ30 changes F-stop gradually as one zooms from no-zoom (F 2.8) through 4x optical (F 3.5) to 12x optical (F3.7).

Also: Thank you for your direction to the web-hosting site, http://www.smugmug.com. When I get a moment, I will look up the site and see what is involved. If I join, I will use your referral #.

By the way, I've been finding a number of your shots posted on other threads. Very nice! I particularly like the pano of Sedona.

I'm running out the door to try my first full-light shots on the FZ30.

Still on a steep learning curve.......In fact, the images you have already posted come with the EXIF data embedded. I did a check on your ISO 80 shots for the FZ20 & FZ30. To wit:

FZ20 shot at 1/4 second, ISO 80, f2.8 aperture
FZ30 shot at 1 second, ISO 80, f3.7 aperture.

Which explains a lot why the FZ30 photo is much brighter than the FZ20 one; it's shot two stops slower, less maybe 1/2 stop for the f2.8/f3.7 difference. I guess in order to make a quantitative comparison, you should switch to manual mode, and take your shots for both cameras at f4.0, ISO 80, say 1/2 second shutter speed.

I don't know what image-processing program you use, but many of them allow you to read EXIF data from images. I know Photoshop does it through a "File -> Get info -> EXIF" command, and I think other programs do that too. I'm using iPhoto5, and to read your EXIFs, I added the two photos to the iPhoto5 library, then simply did a "get info" on the files to see the exposure info.

If you're stymied by file size limitations for uploading here, try creating "100% crops," clipping a small rectangle from the images to demonstrate your point, saving the crop as a small JPEG, and then uploading that, which will then be displayed here accurately. One reason I like Smugmug is that I don't have to screw around and keep on whittling a file just to make it uploadable under these quite limiting constraints here.

justshootme
10-08-2005, 03:44 PM
Let us know as soon as you can about the loss of a stop on the zoom.

That's what would concern me, but it might not be an issue at all.

:)
**************

I opened the box of a new FZ 30 last night. After one day of trying out my new FZ30 in A-B comparisons with my trusty FZ20, here are my initial impressions:

Weight: Somewhat heavier than the FZ20, the FZ30 is a two-handed or tripod operated camera. The additional depth of the grip helps to compensate for the extra weight. I am interested to see how my wrists feel after a long session of handheld shooting.

Size: A little larger – but a familiar feel. The lens barrel is about the length of a fully extended FZ20 with a couple of filters.

Zoom Ring vs Zoom Toggle: It’s been a long time since I’ve used a zoom ring. I’ve become accustomed to the W/T toggles. It will take me some time to get reacquainted.

Complexity? While the FZ30 can be used for point and click right out of the box, enjoying the full benefits of this camera will take some study and practice. This camera has a moderate learning curve – and I am just at the beginning of it. The zoom and focus rings guarantee that your left hand will do more than just support the camera’s ample lens. As I said before, this is a two handed camera – two active hands. Photographers who use SLR’s or DSLR’s are going to feel right at home with the FZ30. While the function buttons and menus are intuitively designed and similar to the FZ20, there are a couple of new dials that I have yet to play with. Additionally there are several new preset modes to explore. Access to the Macro mode is via a switch on the lens barrel, not on the Mode Dial.

Low light: Low light operation and photos are the FZ20’s Achilles’ heel. The FZ30 offers significant improvement. At identical settings, the FZ30 produces a much brighter low light photos without flash than the FZ20. The auto-focus light is now in a location where your hand will not block it. The LCD and EVF can “see in the dark” compared to the FZ20. The shutter stays open as long as a minute compared to only 8 seconds on the FZ20. You will be taking handheld pictures well into dusk.

Picture Clarity: I cannot yet report about shots in full daylight as, thus far, I have shot in low light only. In low light, the improvements in clarity are easily apparent throughout the camera’s 1MP - 8MP resolution range. Ditto on color rendition. The auto white balance seems to be getting it right thus far. My FZ20’s auto white balance in low light was not always correct. The LCD and EVF are much sharper – another big plus in low light situations.

Quick to the Shot: While I never complained about the FZ20’s agility, this new camera’s speed is something to behold. Instead of the FZ20’s five-second turn on and shut down time, the FZ30 is ready for you by the time you get the camera to your eye – one second. There is no discernable shutter lag. The focus speed is remarkably snappy too. In this important regard, the FZ30’s performance has become similar to an SLR or DSLR.

What about Noise? I have yet to shoot in full light so I am hedging my report a bit. Having read many comments posted here I expected the worst. I am relieved: The noise level of the FZ30 is about the same as the FZ20 - with one advantage for the FZ30 - read on: I shot at ISO 80 and 400 in low light with both cameras. In low light conditions there was no apparent noise at ISO 80 on the FZ30. At ISO 400 there was noise on both cameras – akin to using ASA 400 film. Here is something that makes ISO 400 usable on the FZ30 (I never use it on the FZ20): ISO 400 noise is greatly reduced when the shots are taken at settings below 8MP. At 3MP the noise is much reduced – low enough to clean up sharply with Neat Image. At 1MP there is virtually no noise. Remember: my shots were in low light; low light shots produce the worst noise. If this is the worst this camera does, I’ll be a happy camper.

Extended Zoom: Contrary to a few comments I have read, the extended optical zoom, (available when shooting at less than 8MP) really does provide clearer shots than digital enlargement. The 19x optical enlargement at 3MP is pretty impressive. For kicks the camera can then multiply that 19x by 4x digitally (similar to enlarging with Photoshop) and give you an eye-popping 76x! I can’t wait to try out the FZ30's Leica optics on a clear day.

Battery life: So far, so good. Not an issue. I purchased a spare. Recharging is very quick.

Flash: Like the FZ20: Good to 20+ feet.

Fit and Finish: Tight tolerances, smoothly operating rings and dials. Similar to the FZ20.

Price: $530. Same price I paid a year ago for my FZ20. For today’s best price Google: Lumix FZ30 price

That's my first day. A good start. I hope you find this helpful. I'll post more as I gain experience with the FZ30.

Billy@Martin
10-08-2005, 04:09 PM
[QUOTE=John_Reed]Just a garden-variety photographer from Australia? Yeah that's me! Welcome aboard, Billy! Thanks John..I do hope this place is a touch more civilised and less 'tech' tragic than that 'pommy' site..Too much brow beating and not enough camera use methinks..Lets get on with the show!!You're right about this FZ30 marque - it's a brilliant piece of work.[/QUOTE...Yep you seem to be able to work around its huge raft of flaws admirably!!]

Billy@Martin
10-08-2005, 04:30 PM
[QUOTE=genece]Billy I did not think I would ever hear you say that....But I agree on the one good camera.

Glad to see your still around.

Gene
Gene..I call a spade a spade..every fz model I have owned has delivered more than enough 'goods' for this brown duck..the 30 makes me swoon!
Enjoyed yer input on that 'other' site..Its become more like a medical waiting room than a camera/photography site..the Good Dr forever peering over his glasses!!
Best
Billy]

Billy@Martin
10-08-2005, 04:33 PM
yes, according to rumor, the fz30 can produce some halfway passable pics.

but also according to rumor, the fz30 is twice the camera the fz15 is.

;)
Hey Bryan you can count too!! Yeah I don't read camera reviews I just tally up the numbers..Buying the FZ1 was easy..no other noise around at the time and most camera owners can't count past 15!!
Best
Billy

meillana
10-09-2005, 06:33 PM
great post frumious.....
it's people like you, john, gene, dev and everyone else which make this forum warm and friendly.... kudos to all.
hope to have my hands full on a 30 when i have the buying capacity..... perhaps i can sell the 20. :)

John_Reed
10-09-2005, 08:28 PM
great post frumious.....
it's people like you, john, gene, dev and everyone else which make this forum warm and friendly.... kudos to all.
hope to have my hands full on a 30 when i have the buying capacity..... perhaps i can sell the 20. :)Pardon my phonetic Tagalog, Meillana! Thanks for your kind remarks - after all, it's people like you who make the process rewarding for all us contributors! Salama!

meillana
10-09-2005, 09:52 PM
Pardon my phonetic Tagalog, Meillana! Thanks for your kind remarks - after all, it's people like you who make the process rewarding for all us contributors! Salama!

"magandang umaga" (good morning) to you too and "maraming salamat" (thank you) john..... and your tagalog really sounds quirky! hahaha.
that really made my day!!! :)
-manny

frumious
10-10-2005, 01:22 AM
Let us know as soon as you can about the loss of a stop on the zoom.

That's what would concern me, but it might not be an issue at all.

:)
**************
Justshootme -

The FZ30 aperture is officially F2.8 - F3.7: F2.8 at wide (1x/35mm) and F3.7 at full optical zoom (12x/420mm). I was confirming this above and noting that the change from F2.8 to F3.7 is gradual - spread across the zoom range. This is different from the FZ20 which maintains F2.8 throughout its range.

In the couple of days that I have had the FZ30, the lack of one stop at full zoom has not seemed to be an issue. Even if it were, the camera lets you gain up to 2 stops in the exposure control. Plus any post processing that you might want to do will let you increase the exposure (within reason) with little or no loss of image quality.

Let me offer here my final thought on the FZ30's low light shooting and noise: Compared to the FZ20, the FZ30 can shoot in Program mode (P) at lower light and with less noise. Here is why and how: In Program mode, the FZ20 is handicapped when shooting in low light at ISO 80. (See John Reed's explanation of this on the follow-on thread: Explanation of FZ20 vs. FZ30 "ISO discrepancy") The FZ20's image comes out very dark and it is very difficult to see the shot on either its EVF or LCD. The FZ30, on the other hand, shoots reasonably well in low light at ISO 80 in P mode. My FZ30 shots captured about the same image brilliance at ISO 80 as those captured by the FZ20 at ISO 400. (John figured out why.) Since ISO 80 shots have little or no noise, that is the ISO I will be using in low light. In P mode I will be avoiding ISO 400 in low light with the FZ30 because it does not produce a noticeably brighter picture and, like the FZ20, ISO 400 produces some noise.

I hope this is useful information. Thank you all for being patient with me. Today I took my first outdoor shots. What fun! I'll be posting a new thread on this experience in a few days.