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Old 04-17-2013, 08:24 PM   #1
Shelly S
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Help with camera choice.

I was looking at a Panasonic FZ200 24x optical zoom with Leica lens and a cannon Sx50 with 50x optical zoom. Both these cameras get great reviews and it is hard to choose one. It seems the Panasonic will take better low light and action shots with a better lens and the cannon has the awesome zoom. I was also told that a polarizer filter will go right on the Panasonic but would need an adapter to go on the cannon. I want this polarizer or Hawaii.

I know almost nothing about cameras. These were recommended to me at the camera shop and then I went home and looked at the reviews. I am going to Hawaii, have a few Disney trips coming up, two cruises and hope to go back to Alaska soon. I like to take tons of pics at Disney day and night, as well as nature, wildlife, and sunrise/sunsets.

If anyone has used these cameras, has a different suggestion,or if there is one which is a combination of these two I would appreciate your thoughts. I am not really looking at a SLR as I don't know enough and don't want to change lenses.
Thanks for any help you can offer.
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:32 PM   #2
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Personally, I'd go with the Panasonic. 25x zoom is plenty to capture pictures from far away but there are so many low light aspects of Disney and the rides move just as much as the animals.
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:34 PM   #3
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Shelly S I do not have either one of those cameras so all I can do is offer you my opinion.
I for one would not give up low light for more zoom if I had 24x to begin with. I can tell you that you will need low light if you plan to take pictures inside the rides at Disney.
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:41 PM   #4
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I'd rather have the fz200. A constant 2.8 aperture is very valuable. It will let you get more effective zoom than the Canon. While the Canon may technically have more possible zoom, it won't be nearly as usable unless you're in perfect bright light.

Would you rather have blurry grainy 50x close up or a sharp clear 20x close up?

Neither camera has great image quality. The Canon surprisingly has slightly better image quality ratings, but the Panasonic should perform much better in low light, for action shots, and for real world use of telephoto.
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:06 PM   #5
Shelly S
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Quote:
Originally Posted by havoc315 View Post

Neither camera has great image quality. The Canon surprisingly has slightly better image quality ratings, but the Panasonic should perform much better in low light, for action shots, and for real world use of telephoto.
Thanks for the quick answers everyone. If neither has great image quality is there another camera I should be looking at?
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shelly S View Post
Thanks for the quick answers everyone. If neither has great image quality is there another camera I should be looking at?
You're probably looking at the right cameras for your needs.

There are no super zoom compacts with great image quality. They achieve the zoom by shrinking down the sensor, and thereby reducing the quality. Then they usually use slow lenses, reducing quality further. There is a reason you never see a dSLR lens that is "20+ times zoom". For a dSLR, 10x is huge.

There are a few compacts with excellent image quality, but they cost more, and they don't have the big telephoto abilities. I shoot with the rx100, great lens, amazing image quality, but only 4x zoom.
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Old 04-17-2013, 09:51 PM   #7
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I'm not a camera guru, but I have the Canon SX 40 (model previous to the SX 50, I believe), and I have been very happy with it. So far it has well suited our needs. Love the big zoom for the kids sports and I'll be taking it to Disney in June!
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Old 04-28-2013, 04:44 PM   #8
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Hi Shelley,

This info is probably coming a week too late and you've probably made your choice, but if not, hopefully I can be of some help.

I'm like you in that I'm not ready for a DSLR. I'd love to know how to use them one day, but right now I don't have the time, patience, or money to learn.
I own the Panasonic FZ100 and it's the third camera of the FZ range that I've owned. You can probably guess by this that I think they are very good cameras. I love having the big zoom as it allows me to play around more with composition, and I've always been happy with the pics I've been able to take in outdoor, daytime lighting. But (and it's a big but), I've never been happy with their capability in low or artificial lighting. There are manual white-balance settings which despite playing around with, I can't seen to get artificial lighting shots that don't come out quite yellowish and with a lot of noise. (I think this is part camera and part my lack of skills.)
I understand that the FZ200 has made moves to amend this, but for the sake of wanting good low-light pics without lots of manual adjustments, I have temporarily shyed away from his brand of camera.

From my research I've discovered that big zoom and quality low-light pics do not really go hand in hand. My next camera will be the Sony RX100. It gets rave reviews for it's image quality and I've seen samples of night pics taken with the camera that I would be really happy with. I'll take it and my Panasonic to Disney so I can get the best of both worlds.

I think basically you need to decide what is most important to you. If it's image quality and low-light, go for something like the Sony RX100, if it's zoom the Panasonic's are great, if it's a compromise between each, perhaps start researching good quality cameras with about 10x zoom.

In case you're interested, all the pics from my first and third blog entry were taken with a Panasonic from the FZ range. The Fiji post was a mixture of my Panasonic and my waterproof Sony TX10.
The most recent Langham photos were taken with my waterproof Sony. I don't love these indoor shots, but the indoor shots I took with the Panasonic were worse.
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