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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Derbyshire, UK
    Posts
    10

    Yet Another Which one question !

    Budget : around $400

    Size: smaller is better really. I have an Olympus fe-120 that I carry when walking, but want an upgrade.

    Features: Mega pixels is not essential, but I am looking at an Ultra-Zoom
    Image quality is very important as the pictures are usually viewed full screen on a 21" monitor, and eventually some are printed A4 size.

    Manual controls would be nice to help with learning how to take better shots, but at first I'll be using point and shoot mode a lot I guess.

    I'll mainly be using the camera for daytime scenery shots, and I use macro mode quite a lot for insects and flowers etc, but having never taken any slow apperture night shots would love to see if I can do it.
    (and of course the obligatory family pics!)

    I have been turning circles reading review after review, and I am having real trouble deciding which camera, out of the 3 that I have targetted.

    Sony DSC-H5
    Canon Powershot S3 IS
    Panasonic DMC-FZ30

    I'm leaning towards the Sony, as it appears to be the best "all rounder" and the 3" screen appeals to me, but to be honest I'm really struggling to pull a winner, as they all do exactly what I want.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    125
    None of the three cameras you mentioned I would consider small. The Panasonic FZ30 I would consider to be quite the opposite. Out of the Canon S3 and the Sony H5 they are both very similar cameras and they do not differ by much, it is normally the slight differences of ergonomics and same of the additional features (3” LCD, Swivel LCD) which sets them apart. If you have not already done so I suggest you go and hold both of them in your hand and get a feeling for them.

    There is one more camera which I would consider worth a look. That is the Panasonic DMC-TZ1. Its key point is that it is relatively compact for a large zoom camera. It has good image quality at low ISO sensitivity settings. It does lack same of the manual controls of the larger cameras.

    The only other compact ultra zoom is the Nikon Coolpix S10. It is slightly lighter then the panasonic TZ1 but also slightly higher. I have not read any reviews on it, or have any first hand experience but dcresource has a review planed sometime in late November for it. If it is anything like its predecessor then its photo quality and performance would be quite average.

    The Kodak V610 might also be worth a glance. It is by far the smallest camera which offers such a zoom range. It seems to have decent camera performance but only average image quality.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    WI
    Posts
    1,992
    I agree except I don't like the Kodak V610. It has no IS and I've only seen bad reviews of it.

    Why do you need an ultrazoom for daytime scenery shots and macros? Would a Canon A630/A640 be good enough for that with 4x zoom? Or Canon A710 with 6x zoom? They are smaller than the ultrazooms and may be cheaper.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Los Altos, CA
    Posts
    2,635

    Red face Check out the DMC-TZ1?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zigtek View Post
    Budget : around $400

    Size: smaller is better really. I have an Olympus fe-120 that I carry when walking, but want an upgrade.

    Features: Mega pixels is not essential, but I am looking at an Ultra-Zoom
    Image quality is very important as the pictures are usually viewed full screen on a 21" monitor, and eventually some are printed A4 size.
    I have a 20.1" Formac monitor. It takes a 1600 X 1200 image to cover its screen, i.e. 2MP. Monitors are not a "quality determinant," usually. A4 size printing requires ~4MP to print at 200 pixels/inch. So any camera generating over 4MP should suffice for your needs. I've printed ~A4 size (8X10) photos from my TZ1 and they look very sharp.
    Manual controls would be nice to help with learning how to take better shots, but at first I'll be using point and shoot mode a lot I guess.
    The TZ1 has no manual controls, except for EV (exposure) compensation. I haven't found it to be a drawback, because it also has a lot of scene modes that help out in extreme situations.
    I'll mainly be using the camera for daytime scenery shots, and I use macro mode quite a lot for insects and flowers etc, but having never taken any slow apperture night shots would love to see if I can do it.
    (and of course the obligatory family pics!)
    Daytime, macro, night time TZ1 shots:





    I have been turning circles reading review after review, and I am having real trouble deciding which camera, out of the 3 that I have targetted.

    Sony DSC-H5
    Canon Powershot S3 IS
    Panasonic DMC-FZ30

    I'm leaning towards the Sony, as it appears to be the best "all rounder" and the 3" screen appeals to me, but to be honest I'm really struggling to pull a winner, as they all do exactly what I want.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.
    As others have said, your choices are on the "big" side, hence the TZ1 as an option. The TZ1 is too small to have a 3" screen, but its 2.5" screen works very well in most lighting conditions. I recently took it along with me as my only camera on a trip to France, shot over 1,000 photos, and didn't have any trouble not seeing the screen for framing.
    Let a be your umbrella!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    43
    What about Panasonic Lumiz FZ7. It's smaller than FZ30, H5, S3 and is easy to use. The user ratings are good! http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/read...nasonic_dmcfz7
    Picture quality should be better then TZ1 due to bigger lens?
    The issue of noise on high ISO could be reduced by the use of a tripod?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Derbyshire, UK
    Posts
    10
    Hi Guys n Gals,
    Thanks for all your inputs, and giving me yet more reading to do

    I really like the TZ1 idea but, after much deliberation I am still swayed towards the DSC-H5, though having resigned myself to a bigger camera.
    I think it will provide me with the opportunity to take my photography up a good few levels, without the true DSLR price tag.

    Just have to go and get my hands on one to really get a feel for it and see if I like it now.

    I will of course let you all Know what I think when I have taken a few shots.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    2
    what about the fuji f6500 fd, It had wide angle of 28 mm, manual zoom ring, good ISO performances. 300 mm tele.

    I am going to buy the fuji probably in december.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    WI
    Posts
    1,992
    Quote Originally Posted by Luscinia View Post
    The issue of noise on high ISO could be reduced by the use of a tripod?
    I think a tripod would only reduce blur, not noise.

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