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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    8

    can u talk me out of getting an FZ7?

    Hi guys, came across the site and read the reviews, very useful. i have seen other people leaning towards an FZ7 and people either being neutral or suggesting something else, no real proactive supporters from what i gather. so ill list my requirements below.

    Budget

    * What budget have you allocated for buying this camera? Please be as specific as possible.

    -I'm in the UK so about £200 which is roughly $400

    Size

    * What size camera are you looking for? Or does size not matter at all to you?

    -smaller is better, but a medium sized one is good too, will be used by more than me so a generally convenient size is best

    Features

    How many megapixels will suffice for you?

    -6 seems a good choice, willing to go a little either way

    * What optical zoom will you need? (None, Standard = 3x-4x, Ultrazoom = 10x-12x, Other - Specify)

    - i would realy prefer 10 or more as i want it for an all round camera for everyone in the family for all conditions

    * How important is “image quality” to you? (Rate using a scale of 1-10)

    - 8

    Do you care for manual controls?

    - i and maybe my dad too, may venture into a little amateur photography of sorts so manual controls are good

    General Usage

    * What will you generally use the camera for?

    -everything, friends and family shots indoors, outdoors, anything that catches my eye etc..

    * Will you be making big prints of your photos or not?

    - i dont plan to, but the possibility would be nice

    Will you be shooting a lot of indoor photos or low light photos?

    - most definitely, have heard the FZ7 has excessive noise, looked at the S3 people have also suggested as a contender, in the review of it it seems to have similar noise levels

    Will you be shooting sports and/or action photos?

    - yep, have little cousins, 1 and 3

    Miscellaneous

    Are there particular brands you like or hate?

    no preference

    Are there particular models you already have in mind?

    - FZ7 and S3

    (If applicable) Do you need any of the following special features? (Wide Angle, Image Stabilization, Weatherproof, Hotshoe, Rotating LCD)

    - the only thing i NEED is image stabilization as my dad will be using it and has a shake in his left arm (early parkinsons), hotshoe hasnt struck me as a necessity.

    i like the sound of the FZ7, and it seems a good choice, the EVF and a 2.5" LCD (my mum is long sighted and dad has mild parkinsons). USB doesnt bother me a bit, i have a built in card reader on my laptop. im a little concerned about peoples mentions of excessive noise, but ive never had a decent camera so anything is better than what i have now. my uncle has a sony cybershot T3, thats an ultra-portable point-and-shoot and takes excellent indoor pics, so i assume something like the FZ7 should be a better than that which would make me happy for the general shots of the children.

    so in asking for someone to help me decide i would rather u criticize my choice and let me see whats wrong with it and what else i might want to go for.

    thanks alot

    any replies welcome

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    1,056
    the worst thing about FZ7 for me is it doesnt have a hotshoe
    its probably not the best choice if you need to work it indoors
    in fact i would aviod that

    it has very similar noise patterns to the S3is
    as they both use the same sized sensor
    either of them is only any good for iso400 on a good day
    but i prefer the FZ7 to the S3, reason ? lens is better quality

    as for talking you out of it
    there should be a few deals going on post christmas to clear excees stock
    the Olympus E300 dSLR has just become a discontinued product as of a few days ago
    maybe theres some cheap alternate that you thought was out of your price range that suddenly has become so

    Riley
    Riley

    Pentax 110 auto SLR

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    WI
    Posts
    1,965
    Quote Originally Posted by Riley View Post
    it has very similar noise patterns to the S3is as they both use the same sized sensor
    Using that logic, any digicam with the same size sensor, in this case 1/2.5", would have a very similar noise level. In other words, the FZ7, S3, H2, S5200, and so on would all have noise very similar. However, I don't think that's the case.

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

    Cool As an old guy with a shaky left hand...

    Quote Originally Posted by jonomab View Post
    Hi guys, came across the site and read the reviews, very useful. i have seen other people leaning towards an FZ7 and people either being neutral or suggesting something else, no real proactive supporters from what i gather. so ill list my requirements below.

    Budget

    * What budget have you allocated for buying this camera? Please be as specific as possible.

    -I'm in the UK so about £200 which is roughly $400

    Size

    * What size camera are you looking for? Or does size not matter at all to you?

    -smaller is better, but a medium sized one is good too, will be used by more than me so a generally convenient size is best

    Features

    How many megapixels will suffice for you?

    -6 seems a good choice, willing to go a little either way

    * What optical zoom will you need? (None, Standard = 3x-4x, Ultrazoom = 10x-12x, Other - Specify)

    - i would realy prefer 10 or more as i want it for an all round camera for everyone in the family for all conditions

    * How important is “image quality” to you? (Rate using a scale of 1-10)

    - 8

    Do you care for manual controls?

    - i and maybe my dad too, may venture into a little amateur photography of sorts so manual controls are good

    General Usage

    * What will you generally use the camera for?

    -everything, friends and family shots indoors, outdoors, anything that catches my eye etc..

    * Will you be making big prints of your photos or not?

    - i dont plan to, but the possibility would be nice

    Will you be shooting a lot of indoor photos or low light photos?

    - most definitely, have heard the FZ7 has excessive noise, looked at the S3 people have also suggested as a contender, in the review of it it seems to have similar noise levels

    Will you be shooting sports and/or action photos?

    - yep, have little cousins, 1 and 3

    Miscellaneous

    Are there particular brands you like or hate?

    no preference

    Are there particular models you already have in mind?

    - FZ7 and S3

    (If applicable) Do you need any of the following special features? (Wide Angle, Image Stabilization, Weatherproof, Hotshoe, Rotating LCD)

    - the only thing i NEED is image stabilization as my dad will be using it and has a shake in his left arm (early parkinsons), hotshoe hasnt struck me as a necessity.

    i like the sound of the FZ7, and it seems a good choice, the EVF and a 2.5" LCD (my mum is long sighted and dad has mild parkinsons). USB doesnt bother me a bit, i have a built in card reader on my laptop. im a little concerned about peoples mentions of excessive noise, but ive never had a decent camera so anything is better than what i have now. my uncle has a sony cybershot T3, thats an ultra-portable point-and-shoot and takes excellent indoor pics, so i assume something like the FZ7 should be a better than that which would make me happy for the general shots of the children.

    so in asking for someone to help me decide i would rather u criticize my choice and let me see whats wrong with it and what else i might want to go for.

    thanks alot

    any replies welcome
    I might be qualified to speak on this issue. I don't know your father's age, I'm 67. I don't have early Parkinson's, but I'm told it's some kind of tremor caused by possible minor brain damage at birth. For that reason, I got really excited about the Panasonic cameras - they weren't the first to use image stabilization, but they were the first to offer it in a low-cost camera, like the FZ1 I bought almost 4 years ago. The OIS system has enabled me to shoot long-zoom shots that I couldn't get in any other way. Of course there are now more modern cameras than the FZ1. I myself have progressed through several Panasonic models, through the FZ10, FZ15, FZ30, which I still use, and now a TZ1 and an FX50. Though I don't own an FZ7, I have no doubt that its OIS system works just as well as the system on the cameras I do own, and that's great!

    One benefit your Dad will get from the FZ7 (also true of the S3), is having an Electronic Viewfinder (AKA EVF), which lets one hold the camera to the face while framing a shot. This can take the left-hand shakiness out of the equation, and allow sharp shots with the zoom fully extended. So I think it's important to have some sort of eyepiece viewfinder for your Dad, though I've done surprisingly well with the EVF-less cameras in my stable. Still, I think I get ~1 f-stop improvement at least with the viewfinder in use, maybe more. (By that I mean if I could handhold a shot at 1/50 with my TZ1, I could get a sharp result with my FZ30 at 1/25 or even slower) I will add a caveat, and that is, if your Dad has eyeglasses, the hard plastic ring around the EVF of the FZ7 could scratch the coating on the lens (mine are those hard plastic lenses with a coating; learning this lesson with my FZ1 cost me ~$600 for a new pair of glasses a couple of years back!). If you get one, get a rubber eye cup along with it, to avoid this issue, or get slightly higher priced and larger FZ30, which are now selling for about FZ7 prices, and already have a rubber eye ring.

    I wouldn't worry much about noise as an issue. It's often reported in reviews, and many people worry about it, but most users are finding that it's not a big deal. Most photos you take will be at ISO 80, and even photos taken at higher ISOs in low lighting are safe up to around ISO 400, from what I've seen of the FZ7. If you're concerned about noise after shooting with the camera, you'll find that a good NR program like Neat Image or Noise Ninja will clean up what noise there is and still leave you plenty of details.

    So I can't talk you out of the FZ7? I tried.
    Let a be your umbrella!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    8

    thanks for these replies

    thanks guys for the replies, especially john for the insight into my dad using the camera. he (dad) is 64 and also has a shakey left arm so should be able to handle the camera reasonably well, though glasses wont be an issue.

    the camera will be a step from a point and shoot to a bit more advanced use (some experimentation into photography). so im starting to think maybe an SLR is a consideration, though the size is a bit of an issue, and i dont really know if i need one, as appealing as they are in functionality and picture quality. ill have a look at the FZ30 and maybe others that are suggested, image stabilization is a MUST though.

    as was said before and in other posts, people seem to focus mainly on the noise issue. seems that its not going to be that much of an issue outdoors, but indoors is where i will be wanting to use it too, can someone tell me if i can just have one all round lense like the FZ7 has inbuilt if i do go for an SLR.

    im in no real rush to buy, i want to make sure im making the right decision on a camera that will last me for a long while and have the thing i need.

    also, does anyone know if there will be any new models coming out to be the successor of the FZ7? as if they are in my price range and are better it may be worth the wait.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    1,056
    Quote Originally Posted by bascom View Post
    Using that logic, any digicam with the same size sensor, in this case 1/2.5", would have a very similar noise level. In other words, the FZ7, S3, H2, S5200, and so on would all have noise very similar. However, I don't think that's the case.
    not entirely the use of logic to determine a result
    more like a bi-line to the result
    quite honestly we've been over this like a dozen times with these two cameras
    i would be surprised if even the webmaster didnt have an opinion on it by now
    Riley

    Pentax 110 auto SLR

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    10

    So which is it?

    I am down to the S3 and the FZ7. My main goal is to take photos at baseball games (still and action) and enlarge them to 8x10. Which one would be best. My knowledge of cameras is far less then most on this site, but I know what I want to do with it. Please give me any and all thoughts that might help me make the final decision.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    8

    FZ7 it is i believe

    well ive looked and i guess ill settle on an FZ7, i dont like the S3 all to much from the look alone. seems to suffer from "button clutter", and the screen just doesn't seem big enough for my long sighted mum even with the lower than desirable resolution on it.

    just got to go price hunting now, ebay seems my best bet, also now that Christmas is over people may start getting rid of them for one reason or another.

    having a quick look into lenses and filters etc.. while im at it. is there anything i should avoid totally, or maybe something recommended thats not to expensive.

    one last note for this post is; will any old 52mm lense or filter fit on the FZ7 (i know the included adapter is needed, but is there anything else required as well?)

    thanks for the replies so far

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Guelph, Ontario
    Posts
    1,903
    i've been using all my old 52mm filters with included adapter with no issues.
    Canon EOS 7D

    flickr®
    FLUIDR

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    1,056
    if you can score a wide adapter or tele converter with it all the better
    look for extra memory, and batteries too

    its better if they come with the box and accessories, check the reviews for 'whats in the box' to make sure you get all you should
    Riley

    Pentax 110 auto SLR

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