I think I can bear to continue with the fz20 for another year or so, or until something comes out that is such a leap forward that it's irresistible. The fz30 ain't it. Nor is a dslr.
Driftwood floats after years of erosion
Incoming tide touches roots to expose them
Quicksand steals my shoe
Clouds bring the f-stop blues
Just a thought (please don't shoot me) - but if virtually everyone who has posted in this thread appears to already have an FZ20, why do you need an FZ30 exactly? Why is everyone in a big rush to upgrade if the FZ20 is such a good camera with a few annoying "quirks" or missing features? One or two new features that you like the sound of are cause for investing $700-$800 on a new camera? It's not even a different kind of camera, I mean I can see justifying the expense of buying another camera if it does something different than the one(s) you already have, but this is basically the same camera, upgraded. I don't see why everyone is so pissed off about it. You don't like it, don't buy it! That ought to send a fairly clear message to Panasonic, and in the meantime you can use the camera you already have which is perfectly fine! The only thing wrong with the FZ20 from where I'm sitting is it's not the "top of the line" anymore because a newer model came out.
Am I the only one who can remember the days when you bought a camera and it was sufficient to keep that very same camera for many, many years of service before thinking of upgrading?
OK, I'll take a shot at an answer...
I'm a Medicare-type guy, so I've been around the loop for a long time. I too remember when cameras lasted for years without crying to be replaced. But, the times have changed since then. Film didn't advance much over those many years we kept our cameras, but digital technology is leaping ahead by generations each year, to wit:
Originally Posted by SVT4ME
I started lusting for a Panasonic FZ1 before it became available, finally getting one and falling in love with it 2 short years ago, in April 2003. It only had 2MP, but boy, did it make shooting photos FUN! I shot something like 18,000 photos with that puppy. But, it was only 2MP, had few manual controls, and so the "wayward wind" caught me, and I "graduated" to an FZ10 in June of 2004. One of the things I learned to love about the long zoom stabilized cameras was being able to snap sharp photos of little birds off in the trees, or even sometimes in flight. My FZ1 was actually quicker at doing that than was my FZ10, so when an Aussie buyer from on-line offered me $400 for my FZ10, I shipped him my camera, and bought an FZ15 to replace it, in February of this year. I like lots of things about the FZ15, but the damn thing is STILL slow to start up, like 5 or 6 seconds to be ready to shoot the geese that just escaped over the horizon. Now, ALL of these previous cameras had 12X zoom, and I felt the need to augment their powers with telephoto extenders, most recently the Canon TL-55. Now, the FZ30 comes along with a startup of less than a second, and at 3MP EZ, it has more zoom power than any of my old cameras, with NO attachments!
For me the "noise" issue is almost a nit, as most of my shots are taken at low ISOs anyway, and the big thing that excites me is just in being able to CAPTURE the image sharply. I do have Noise Ninja for filtering noise when it's a bother, but I don't use it all that often.
be your umbrella!
The technological advancements of the digital camera have historically made them quick(er) to be obsolete, if you want to call it that, but wouldn't you agree that at the moment we are reaching something of a plateau? At this point it's mostly incremental advances and refinements to existing designs. One could easily hold onto that FZ20 for longer and it would work just fine, it's just the knowledge that there is a "better" model out there that kills some people.
I'll be the first to admit I have more cameras than I need (although very few of them were expensive purchases, some were even free) but I think it's somewhat short-sighted to rush out and upgrade to an FZ30 simply because it's there. People have a right to do with their money what they please, so it's not my place to suggest that buying an FZ30 even though the noise bothers them and they already have a good camera is silly, but it seems over the top to say (as one poster did) that they are "outraged" over the noise present in the photos. Outrage is a strong term for disappointment in the quality of a piece of consumer electronics. You get outraged when someone shoots your friend in the head, you get outraged when someone steals your car and burns it. You don't get outraged about a camera that you have a choice not to buy.
I think Jeff did a fine job in balancing the issue of increased noise vs. real-world output in the form of prints or reduced-size screen viewing.
I cant help but pray that Panasonic is playing a cruel joke on all of us and will be releasing the "real" FZ30, and the one that Jeff reviewed was just a prank I know, its not gonna happen but man, I was so happy to hear that the LCD and EVF are FINALLY usable in low light! Then I read on and the noise issue was worse than I had anticipated! If the noise were better or even teh same as the FZ20 Id replace my FZ20 in a heartbeat because of the other improvements. In my opinion its not worth it to upgrade now when HOPEFULLY the replacement for the FZ30 will do better in the noise area. I hope Panasonic will get there heads outa there a@$#% very soon and listen to there customers. I really hope this "new and improved" model fails miserably in the sales so maybe they will wake up! Ill stick with my FZ20 for another year... Thanks panasonic
SVT, I think you misunderstand the way a lot of people feel:
The FZ20 is a great camera, but it has a lot of really annoying shortcomings. They're well-known enough to prevent me from listing them. I am quite irritated by a lot of things with the FZ20, but it's strong suits are enough to make me shrug them off and remember that no camera is perfect.... The FZ30 is perfect. Well, should be perfect. It's not quite there because of the much lamented noise issue.
The point is this: Every flaw, every little nuisance, irritation, "wish was there", lacking feature - is added or fixed in the FZ30. It truly is a prosumer's wild dream. If it wasn't for the noise problem, I guarantee you the FZ30 would become the absolute standard for ultra zoom digital cameras.
I would gladly upgrade to the FZ30 simply for many added features, like the mechanical zoom and focus ring, the independent ap/shutter control dials, and the vastly improved LCD (can you say 'gain up'?). These and other improvements make the FZ30 the end-all, be-all, perfect prosumer digicam. Except for IQ.
That is why so many people are frustrated with the results of the camera. And the term 'outraged' is just getting into semantics - of course no one is as 'outraged' about the results of the FZ30 as they would be at a friend's suicide - you have to be realistic and relative obviously
Good points, but perhaps I am not making my point clear enough, which is that no one is holding a gun to your head to buy this camera. If you do indeed want or need something better, and this isn't it... well, buy something else. There is never, NEVER, going to be a "perfect" anything. Take the best you can get, and if something you want isn't the best, buy the one that is. Choosing not to buy the FZ30 because you are upset about the quality of the images, sends a message to Panasonic (especially if you let them KNOW you went out of your way to not buy the product for that exact reason, via email or letter). Griping about it on the internet might make you feel better, knowing that other people feel the same way, but it doesn't change anything.
That's all I'm going to say, I don't want this thread to get totally side-tracked by my posts.
Ah SVT4ME, you should read your own statement:
"Griping about it on the internet might make you feel better, knowing that other people feel the same way, but it doesn't change anything."
It does make us feel better, that's why we do it
We all love our FZ20's, there's no questions there. We all know what we'd love to have improved, there's no questions there. The disappoint comes from seeing every single thing we wanted to see in the follow up to our baby, only to have those same hopes and dreams taken away by this phrase:
"The big disappointment on the FZ30 was the higher than average noise levels, especially at high ISO sensitivities."
I'm sorry, but IQ is everything and to take away from something that the camera did such a good job at before (except for low light and high ISO settings) has essentially made the FZ30 just a really big, awesomely featured paper weight.
BTW, that also sums up why those of us with the FZ20 want to upgrade and were looking to the FZ30 for it...because it has EVERYTHING we wanted...just not the most important feature of all....IQ.
Yes, noise is somewhat subjective...but the fact of the matter is we should'nt have to post process all of these images to get an "acceptable" picture. Post processing should be to make something special or extra perfect, it shouldn't be just to get something descent.
Oh well, I commend Panasonic for getting everything they did in the FZ30...I mean WOW. If I didn't already have an Ultra Zoom, it would definitely be on my short list. The Noise issue, however, is just not enough to warrent shelling out the extra $ to upgrade.
Until next year then...
My Family's website
Panasonic DMC-FZ20 - and loving every minute of it!!!
Canon s60 - keeps the wife from using MY FZ20 :P
never mind what i typed
Last edited by tim11; 08-18-2005 at 06:02 PM.
Reason: never mind what i typed
No one else is bugged by the RAW Catch-22?