Monday, 27 February 2006

New Camera

Brett's my best mate, because he's bringing me back a new camera from the US. I'm envious of the low prices and fast shipping Yankees get!

I'd been trying to decide between the Fuji S5200 and Panasonic FZ7, both compact long-zoom cameras. I'd been waiting on reviews for the new FZ7 before I chose, but when they came in I decided to go with the S5200. There are tradeoffs between the two that, in my opinion, make both cameras equally good choices.

The FZ7 has 6 megapixels over the S5200's 5 megapixels, but actual resolution tests put them pretty much on par with one another.
The FZ7 has 12x zoom over the S5200's 10x zoom. That would have been nice to have.
The FZ7 has optical image stabilisation (OIS), which would be very nice to have, especially for handheld zoomed shots.

The S5200 has better noise control than the FZ7. For a given amount of noise you can use one higher ISO sensitivity rating, thereby doubling shutter speed and somewhat mitigating the need for OIS. OIS still has the advantage in coping with camera shake though.
In my opinion, the noise that is present is nicer on the S5200 than the FZ7. The FZ7 appears to have more colour noise (pixels are the wrong colour), which gives a splotchy image (though it can look attractive, like it's painted). The S5200 appears to have more luminance noise (pixels are the wrong brightness), which looks more like traditional film grain. Personally I prefer the latter.
The S5200 has a fixed lens barrel with 55mm threading on it for conversion lenses and filters. That could be fun to play with.

In the end, the most deciding factor was that I could get the S5200 for $100 cheaper. I figure, I'll get this camera on the cheap, and if I really want then in future I can put that money towards a proper digital SLR.

Now I can't wait for Brett to get back! Uh, cause he's me mate and we miss him and stuff! :P

1 comment:

Brett said...

Im glad im missed.... even if its cause of the loot iim bringing back :P