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02-13-2011, 12:15 AM   #1
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Tamron 18-250 VS a super zoom.

The more I think about it, the more I think I'm leaning toward a superzoom P&S..
1) a hyperzoom like the tamron is quite a slow lens, and will only be use with enough light, same with a P&S
2) IQ wise, I think some P&S in daylight does really well, some of the superzoom P&S (are midrange to highend P&S) are equip with quite lens lens from the manufacture... so the IQ isn't all that bad.
3) Price, a superzoom (good one) can be have at 100-200 dollars, the tamron 18-250 is probably in the 300.

I guess, the real question is, what can the tamron 18-250 do that a superzoom P&S can't do.

02-13-2011, 12:54 AM   #2
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"I guess, the real question is, what can the tamron 18-250 do that a superzoom P&S can't do. "

Think of this: The 18-250 lens is a high quality lens coupled to what I assume is a high quality DSLR with a APS-C sensor taking a photograph. High quality glass coupled to a larger sensor and with all the attributes of a DSLR/lens combo. A P&S with a superzoom is a tiny (also slow) lens coupled to a camera with a tiny sensor and you get the result of those two with every picture you take. Admittedly, you can get some really great photos from a point and shoot camera and the ability to tuck them into a pocket or small bag has it's conveniences. That being said, the ability of a DSLR with just about any attached lens is almost 100% guaranteed to get you a much clearer photograph with better resolution in almost every shooting scenario imaginable. If you know how to shoot a DSLR, have a working understanding of what DSLR can give to you that almost every P&S cannot is a huge advantage. Yes, you can pull a P&S right out of the box and make decent looking photos whereas most people who have never shot with a DSLR requires a bit of a learning curve. When that curve is mastered, the ability to capture amazing shots on a regular basis is so much more often the case.
I have a Tamron 18-250 and love its convenience when in need of a lens with a huge range of focal lengths. Sure, you give up some speed as opposed to a more standard zoom at a f/2.8 constant, but the trade-off can be worth it depending on the circumstances. With a little bump of your iso speeds, the slower aperture isn't really a problem and I wouldn't think of it as simply a daylight lens only.

What is it about having a superzoom, be it in a DSLR/Lens combo or in a P&S is attractive to you? What kind of shooting do you do?

Jason
02-13-2011, 02:34 AM   #3
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I can provide you some direct insights into this comparison. I had two superzoom P&S: an Olympus Camedia C700 with 10 times optical zoom, and a Panasonic FZ20 with a 12 times optical zoom. I love the Panasonic FZ20, but I started to be frustrated by the average resolutions, the low light performances and the limited PP options. I add that I shoot often outdoor in any weather including foul weather and dusk and dawn when the lighting is below average.

I bought a Pentax K-7 with DA18-250mm. (The Pentax DA18-250mm is manufactured by Tamron and sold also as Tamron 18-250mm.) I skipped with kit lens. The results are beyond my expectations after a few weeks of learnng curve.

First a dSLR offers much more controls and options than a P&S.

Second the performances of a dSLR are much, much better than P&S in terms of IQ as soon as you have the right lens.

Third I got a weather resistant camera and that is a great asset when working outdoor. THe DA18-250mm is not WR but very sturdy, rock solid.

Fourth you can use a range of lenses without buying a new camera. For example, I bought a fast prime lens (Voigtlander Nokton 58mm f1.4) that is a real beauty for low light shooting. This expands drastically my capabilities and I love it. Similarly I bought an expensive full-frame lens (FA31mm) that is incredible. The lens is not cheap but its results are outstanding. That is something that a P&S will never provide.

Ultimately it may depend upon what you shoot. I shoot a lot of dynamic shots when I do not want to miss the opportunities. I do not want to miss some important shots an the dSLR is the way to go.

In summary, the Tamron 18-50mm can be highly recommended, ... especially on a Pentax.

Hope that the comments will help.
02-13-2011, 04:25 AM   #4
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Will the P&S zoom close focus as well?
Will it provide the same control over depth of field?

Can you provide the data for the P&S you are interested in?
I'm pretty sure that if you compute the equivalent lens for an APS-C sized-sensor, you'll get something that is slower than the 18-250.

What is the sensor size, focal range and f-stop range of the P&S you are thinking of?

02-13-2011, 05:18 AM   #5
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I bought a top of the range superzoom P&S for a trip to New Zealand in 2004. Did everything I wanted, but when I compare the IQ against my K20D there's no competition. K20D wins hands down.

Look at what you want/expect from your photography.

All other things being equal, a superzoom P&S will give good results vs excellent results from a DSLR.

If good is what you want/need (ie acceptable results up to A4 equivalent size) and you're prepare for the lack of versatlity, ie you can only operate within the lens design parameters, then a superzoom P&S is for you!

Whatever you choose, may you have good light!
02-13-2011, 05:29 AM   #6
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The biggest thing is that you have an SLR behind the Tamron 18-250. That means that if you want to experiment with macro photography or narrow depth of field photography, you can get a cheap lens and play to your heart's content. With a point and shoot/bridge camera, the lens is what it is. Image quality is usually decent (not great in low light settings), focus doesn't need to be terrbily good, because everything is in focus anyway.

An SLR is a camera that can grow with you, as you learn about photography and what you like and dislike. A point and shoot, however nice, will have difficulty doing that and eventually you will feel frustrated with it.
02-13-2011, 06:06 AM   #7
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It really boils down to: What do you want to do with your pictures? Is it your intention to take quick snap shots and have a local minimart 1 hr. photolab print out 3 1/2 X 5 or 4 X 6 prints, and maybe the occasional email attachment? get the P&S Superzoom. Anything beyond that, you want better IQ (Image Quality).
02-13-2011, 06:31 AM   #8
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I use both, the 18-250 on a Kx and a Panasonic FZ35. For small size family prints in good to moderate low light, you won't see a difference and the FZ35 is far more convenient. For very low light, the 18-250 will give much better shots, even with small prints. I made the decision a long time ago not to take my DSLR on family vacations and use a high level point and shoot, Canon SD4000 IS, for the low light shots. For me, it's so much easier to take the two small cameras rather than a DSLR. Once you take the DSLR with the 18-250, why not bring a prime and maybe one other lens just in case? Before you know it, you're lugging around a bag of lenses. The other posters are correct, however, in that a DSLR has a far greater potential for creativity and large prints.

02-13-2011, 07:03 AM   #9
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I guess it is an apples and pears discussion IMHO.
You should compare the whole package: lens + camera for a better comparison.

Let me try and do this for you.

Advantages of the DSLR / 18-250mm:
1) Overall image quality, an APSC sensor camera has much less noise and much more dynamic range in any given situation.
2) Low light is achievable without flash
3) Colour reproduction
4) The ability to mount superior glass (primes)
5) Controls & features

Advantages of a good Superzoom (Lumix FZ 35 and the like):
1) Very good / sharp glass over the whole range (zoom lenses for small surfaces / sensors are easier to make than for large surfaces)
2) Small and easy to carry
3) Price
4) Versitality
5) H.264 AF video

Disadvantages of the DSLR / 18-250mm:
1) Size & weigth
2) Price
3) Lens quality & zoom range good be better (vignetting @ 18mm & soft focus @ 250mm, I know I have one)
4) Limited video capability

Disadvantages of a good Superzoom:
1) Good IQ in broad daylight, else not so good
2) Small flash capability (external flash eliminates some advantages)
3) Limited controls
4) Limited / less quality electronic viewfinder (don't underestimate this disadvantage)

Hope this helps.
A lot of people own a DSLR & Superzoom.
Sitting in a restaurant with a DSLR + flash is different from bringing a small sized P&S.

- Bert
02-13-2011, 07:58 AM   #10
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I have to retouch on some of the comments on this thread.

1) someone mentioned macro photography, I doubt that the 18-250 will do macro better than a P&S... that small sensor allow very good macro photography. And I actually have a dedicated 100mm macro lens + macro coupling rings ect... so we can take that out of the equation.

2) Low light capacity on the 18-250 is also non existent, again a slow lens, not suitable for low light.

3) what I'm really looking is... rather than carrying the 18-250 as an extra around, why don't I just have a superzoom, walk around with that, and have my DSLR on me at low light events.

I own a sony H55, it's packed with sony G lens (pro line), i saw some of the images, it's actually not bad at all in day light.

I think i'll do some image comparision and post it up. see if it's good enough.
02-13-2011, 08:20 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by clockwork247 Quote
I have to retouch on some of the comments on this thread.

1) someone mentioned macro photography, I doubt that the 18-250 will do macro better than a P&S... that small sensor allow very good macro photography. And I actually have a dedicated 100mm macro lens + macro coupling rings ect... so we can take that out of the equation.

2) Low light capacity on the 18-250 is also non existent, again a slow lens, not suitable for low light.

3) what I'm really looking is... rather than carrying the 18-250 as an extra around, why don't I just have a superzoom, walk around with that, and have my DSLR on me at low light events.

I own a sony H55, it's packed with sony G lens (pro line), i saw some of the images, it's actually not bad at all in day light.

I think i'll do some image comparision and post it up. see if it's good enough.
You need to get what you think you need, but I don't think this group is too enthusiastic about the P&S. That small sensor is the problem. It is also what makes the camera more compact. You will get better low-light capacity with the DSLR sensor, and you will get higher quality at an ISO several stops higher, which renders the 18-250 effectively a good deal faster than you may be assuming.

I went through a phase of P&S, and the biggest drawback is that with that tiny sensor, you have to nail the exposure and nail it with a low ISO. Cropping is also a problem as is noise reduction. If you will always be in a situation where you can use low ISO and don't need to crop or post process, you can get excellent results. However, with the DSLR, you have low light capabilities, lens interchangeability and post processing to correct errors that a P&S cannot approach.
02-13-2011, 11:31 AM - 1 Like   #12
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I have had a number of P/S and DSLRs over the years, and will likely continue to have both in my toolkit - currently a Pentax K5 and Canon s90 (not a superzoom).

For me, the point and shoot is for convenience - toss it in your pocket and you're good to go - barely notice it's there. Much more inconspicuous for street shooting. Also, with a P/S I won't be as upset if something bad happens to it (theft, damage, etc), so I am more likely to take it into sketchy situations.

In daylight, image quality is more than acceptable for most use (web, 4x6 prints), but once you get past ISO 400 or so, it starts to really suffer, especially dynamic range. Heck, cell phones are already good enough image wise for a lot people in a lot of situations, and I see them taking a big cut of the P/S market in the coming years.

One fairly important drawback to P/S for me is the inability to get good shallow DOF. I would go full frame or even medium format if I could afford it.

The main drawback with P/S for me though, is that I don't get the same visceral pleasure taking photos with it that I get from a DSLR - no, or very crappy viewfinder (big deal for me), cramped and limited controls, difficult for me to hold steady due to featherlike weight, limited positive feedback during the taking of a picture, etc. P/S takes the pleasure out of capturing photos for me and I begrudgingly use it for the convenience. May not seem like a good reason, but for me photography is an enjoyable hobby and a P/S take much of the joy out of it.
02-13-2011, 03:38 PM   #13
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I've recently bought two superzooms (last year a Nikon P100, and this year a Panasonic FZ100). I banished the Nikon to its box after a while, was not happy with the shots, thought I had made a grave mistake, and the P100 just was notup to scratch. So I bought the Panasonic this year, thinking that it would be hands down much better than thte Nikon. It wasn't. And it was only after I got to thinking seriously about what I was expecting that I realised that its the quality of a dslr I was seeking. I had had a few other superzooms in the past and they all seemed to have great quality (but I went with dslr when i wanted more control)...

So in the end, my lesson was this: there will never be a time when you get the same quality of shot from your P&S superzoom bridge camera as you do from your dslr. I was expecting way too much. I should add here that I also have a TZ7 and a Canon G11. The Canon is my go-to when I don't want to carry lots of stuff. Bigger sensor, very decent quality/

If all you want to do is post on facebook or your website, or take family and travel snaps, the superzoom will be just fine. If you want to do more, get the 18-250 (if you can find one... a friend of mine is snapping mine up next week)
02-13-2011, 05:07 PM - 1 Like   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by clockwork247 Quote
2) Low light capacity on the 18-250 is also non existent, again a slow lens, not suitable for low light.
Your Sony H55 has a 25-250 / F3.5 - 5.5 lens.

The 25-250mm are not the true focal lengths end points but the FF equivalents. However, the f-ratios seem to be the actual ones, not FF-equivalent ones.

The size of the H55's sensor (6.18 x 4.55 mm) yields a 3.7 crop factor relative to FF.

That means your lens is, in true FF terms, a 25-250 f/13-20 lens.

The APS-C crop factor relative to FF is ~1.53 (depends on the camera).

The FF-equivalent for the Tamron (18-250 f/3.5-6.3) therefore is a
27.5-382.5 f/5.3-9.6.

You can see that the Tamron does not only have more reach at the long end, but also is much faster! The FF-equivalent f-ratios for your H55 lens show you that you'll find it difficult to blur backgrounds with it unless you are really close to your subjects. All that glass in the Tamron is there for a reason. If they could make it as small as your H55 lens, they would.

I hope you can now see that the Tamron is nowhere near as slow as your P&S lens. Combined with great high ISO performance (such as from the K-x, K-r, K-5) and shake reduction, it will give you very good low-light images.

In comparison to other DSLR lenses, it will give you less opportunities for shallow DOF at the lower focal lengths, but that's about all.

Last edited by Class A; 02-13-2011 at 05:36 PM.
02-14-2011, 01:05 AM   #15
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QuoteQuote:
Class A: Will the P&S zoom close focus as well?
Will it provide the same control over depth of field?

I've had several P & S cameras which close focus to 0 inches, that is, as close as you can get to the subject without touching it, and still acquiring enough light. That coupled with the incredible DOF on P & S, means Macro was superb when done right.

Obviously the sensor on the Point & Shoot can not produce shallow depth of field, but neither can the sensor on the Pentax produce the tremendous depth of field the P & S produces. All systems are a trade off.

I know one thing, for sure. I get a whole lot more return on my dolllar with my P & S cameras than I do with my Pentax crop sensor. Crop Sensor DSLRs are for enthusiasts, those who want incremental gain potential in IQ, for substantial gains in bank account shrinkage.
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