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FZ20 v S1 IS



 
 
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  #1  
Old October 27th 04, 09:49 AM
Kilroy_Woz_ere
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Default FZ20 v S1 IS

I've narrowed my choice down to either Panasonic FZ20 or Canon S1 IS. Price
is a factor but better night time, floodlit football photography would swing
the decision as would decent movie capture under the same conditions. It's
main use would be at football so 90+ minutes of battery life is essential
taking approx 100 photos and 20 movies.

As far as I'm aware (correct me if I'm wrong), both have aperture & shutter
pririoty control manual control and decent ultra-zoom lenses. I've read many
reviews on both but not being camera-literate, the more I read the harder
the decision gets.

In my pure amateur mind, the benefits I see for each a

FZ20 - decent resolution, better zoom, decent lense, li-ion battery and it
uses SD cards which I already have for my pocket pc - otherwise it would put
it out of my budget.
S1 IS - silent zoom, zoom while recording movie. What I don't like are the
AA batteries and not being able to use my existing SD cards.

It's not an easy choice, at today's online prices the S1 even having to buy
decent rechargeables and CF card comes in quite a bit cheaper than the FZ20
which appears to be on back order anywhere selling it at a decent price
(GBP330-340).

Be gentle, I'm an amateur but I need help deciding!

Kilry aka Brian


  #2  
Old October 27th 04, 10:14 AM
Sepe
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"Kilroy_Woz_ere" wrote:

S1 IS - silent zoom, zoom while recording movie. What I don't like are the
AA batteries and not being able to use my existing SD cards.


AA-batteries are a good choice, Here in Europe you can buy a small
smart-charger and four 2100mAh or 2300mAh NiMH-batteries at about 30 euros.
If you do not want to buy extra set of rechargeable batteries you can always
use alkaline batteries instead - for a few pictures at least.
CF-cards are cheaper than SD:s and you would like to start with 256 ...
512MB at least! However CF-cards will be replaced with smaller media in the
near future, also in Canon cameras.

Sepe


  #3  
Old October 27th 04, 10:22 AM
David J Taylor
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Kilroy_Woz_ere wrote:
I've narrowed my choice down to either Panasonic FZ20 or Canon S1 IS.


Brian,

Get yourself along to a decent photo dealer and actually handle both
cameras - you are now at that level of decision. Both will produce
excellent pictures (and perhaps movies within the limitations you list).
The Canon is perhaps smaller and is definitely cheaper (well, it costs
less!), but has less zoom. Some people find small cameras difficult to
handle. Try it with gloves on for those cold winter nights! How easy are
the menus to use? For the functions /you/ need?

A good dealer may price match an Internet site....

Cheers,
David


  #4  
Old October 27th 04, 10:28 AM
Kilroy_Woz_ere
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"David J Taylor"
wrote in message ...
Get yourself along to a decent photo dealer and actually handle both
cameras - you are now at that level of decision. Both will produce
excellent pictures (and perhaps movies within the limitations you list).
The Canon is perhaps smaller and is definitely cheaper (well, it costs
less!), but has less zoom. Some people find small cameras difficult to
handle. Try it with gloves on for those cold winter nights! How easy are
the menus to use? For the functions /you/ need?

A good dealer may price match an Internet site....


Excellent advice, something to do this lunchtime but I'd still appreciate
feedback on both cameras, sales people sometimes have other reasons for
pushing specific cameras.



  #5  
Old October 27th 04, 10:30 AM
David J Taylor
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Kilroy_Woz_ere wrote:
[]
If one li-ion battery will last the afternoon then I'd prefer that to
AA's.


Absolutely! Compare fumbling with 8 AAs (four out, four in) versus a
single exchange. The manual for the camera lists the expected battery
life. You can download the manual from the Web.

Cheers,
David


  #6  
Old October 27th 04, 10:50 AM
David J Taylor
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Kilroy_Woz_ere wrote:
[]
Excellent advice, something to do this lunchtime but I'd still
appreciate feedback on both cameras, sales people sometimes have
other reasons for pushing specific cameras.


OK, but I can only comment on the FZ20. Had one for a few days and been
very pleased with it. Not interested in movies or sound so can't comment
on that. Being left eye dominant, I find the position of the EVF (right
on the left of the camera) means that my nose is resting against the LCD.
The LCD doesn't swivel (which I am used to), but I prefer to use an EVF
and I think for telephoto shots holding the camera against the face
provides better stability than at arm's length (of course, a tripod would
be better, but I don't carry one around).

The stabilisation works really well, including on indoor wide-angle shots.
(One reason why I didn't buy a Minolta A2 earlier this year was that on
indoor shots the stabilisation indication changed from "active" to "sorry,
but I can't help". What use is that!).

Yes, there is a little more noise in the images (even in daylight shots)
than on my Nikon 5700. This is to be expected as the Nikon is a 1/1.8"
sensor versus the 1/2.5" sensor in the Panasonic. Both are 5MP. You
don't see the noise until you look at the print at full magnification on
the screen. (Equivalent to an image 30" wide on the screen).

On a moon-shot there seemed to be a slight amount of red fringing at full
zoom, and I see that on the Panasonic forum:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/forum.asp?forum=1033

at least one person has sent their camera back because of this. However,
this does not seem to be an issue at all in normal photography. From that
person's description it seem they may have a dud.

The forum may be worth a visit.

Cheers,
David


  #7  
Old October 27th 04, 11:05 AM
John Bean
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On Wed, 27 Oct 2004 09:50:18 GMT, David J Taylor wrote:
The stabilisation works really well, including on indoor wide-angle shots.
(One reason why I didn't buy a Minolta A2 earlier this year was that on
indoor shots the stabilisation indication changed from "active" to "sorry,
but I can't help". What use is that!).


The indicator changes below a certain shutter speed - 1/30th I think - as a
warning, but it doesn't imply the AS isn't still working, it is. And very
well, too. Being a user of both the Panasonic and Minolta stabilization
systems I'd say the A2 is a touch ahead at very low shutter speeds but both
are pretty good.

--
John Bean

If you drink, don't drive. Don't even putt (Dean Martin)
  #8  
Old October 27th 04, 12:06 PM
David J Taylor
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John Bean wrote:
On Wed, 27 Oct 2004 09:50:18 GMT, David J Taylor wrote:
The stabilisation works really well, including on indoor wide-angle
shots. (One reason why I didn't buy a Minolta A2 earlier this year
was that on indoor shots the stabilisation indication changed from
"active" to "sorry, but I can't help". What use is that!).


The indicator changes below a certain shutter speed - 1/30th I think
- as a warning, but it doesn't imply the AS isn't still working, it
is. And very well, too. Being a user of both the Panasonic and
Minolta stabilization systems I'd say the A2 is a touch ahead at very
low shutter speeds but both are pretty good.


Thanks, John. Well, Minolta lost a sale partially because of that
indication, partially because of the tinny construction of the swivel LCD,
partially because of the poor image quality recorded in JPEG mode, and
partially through their dishonesty in describing the viewfinder as 0.9MP
(or whatever it was). VGA 0.9MP in my book - 0.3MP instead!

The level of detail in the EVF was certainly a pleasure to work with.

Thanks for your comparison - there needs to be an objective test of
stabilisation systems....

Cheers,
David


  #9  
Old October 27th 04, 12:25 PM
John Bean
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On Wed, 27 Oct 2004 11:06:08 GMT, David J Taylor wrote:

John Bean wrote:
On Wed, 27 Oct 2004 09:50:18 GMT, David J Taylor wrote:
The stabilisation works really well, including on indoor wide-angle
shots. (One reason why I didn't buy a Minolta A2 earlier this year
was that on indoor shots the stabilisation indication changed from
"active" to "sorry, but I can't help". What use is that!).


The indicator changes below a certain shutter speed - 1/30th I think
- as a warning, but it doesn't imply the AS isn't still working, it
is. And very well, too. Being a user of both the Panasonic and
Minolta stabilization systems I'd say the A2 is a touch ahead at very
low shutter speeds but both are pretty good.


Thanks, John. Well, Minolta lost a sale partially because of that
indication, partially because of the tinny construction of the swivel LCD,
partially because of the poor image quality recorded in JPEG mode, and
partially through their dishonesty in describing the viewfinder as 0.9MP
(or whatever it was). VGA 0.9MP in my book - 0.3MP instead!


I think you are being a little unjust about the bogus use of megapixel wrt
the EVF, it's the norm in the business even though it's wrong. When Minolta
say the A1 EVF is 235k or the A2 is 922k they all use the same (wrong)
definition, but comparison is fair. The only reason I see the A2 singled out
for this criticism is that it is such a huge number it causes people to
think harder about what it means. Minolta are not the only manufacturer who
use this measure of EVF resolution, check out a few.

--
John Bean

I always keep a supply of stimulant handy in case I see a snake - which I
also keep handy (W. C. Fields)
  #10  
Old October 27th 04, 12:50 PM
David J Taylor
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John Bean wrote:
[]
I think you are being a little unjust about the bogus use of
megapixel wrt the EVF, it's the norm in the business even though it's
wrong. When Minolta say the A1 EVF is 235k or the A2 is 922k they all
use the same (wrong) definition, but comparison is fair. The only
reason I see the A2 singled out for this criticism is that it is such
a huge number it causes people to think harder about what it means.
Minolta are not the only manufacturer who use this measure of EVF
resolution, check out a few.


John, you may be right that I am being unjust, but it was there on the
outside of the box shouting out at me as one of the "features" of the
camera. 900,000 pixel EVF! Not a claim made on the Nikon 5700 box, not
so on the Panasonic FZ20 box. Their claimed features were correct. Any
it made me think: "If they lie about this, what else are they lying about?
Can I trust this manufacturer?".

But it was primarily the poor recorded picture quality in JPEG mode that
stopped me buying the camera - this had been reported on the A1 and I had
foolishly thought that the manufacturer might have paid attention and
fixed the problem on the A2. No, they hadn't. Again, it said something
about the manufacturer.

Cheers,
David


 




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