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12-13-2008, 09:33 AM   #1
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Favorite Point & Shoot Camera (Pentax or other brands)???

I'm a newbie here and tried to search for a discussion topic on this but came up empty. I suppose this probably changes quite often as new camera models come out literally every day.

I got a Pentax Optio for my daughter a few years back and was quite disappointed with it. I replaced my Sony W1 5MP a couple of months ago for a Panasonic TZ5 and quite happy with the upgrade, however I curious what point & shoot cameras are preferred by Pentax guys and why.

12-13-2008, 09:46 AM   #2
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I've always used Canon P&S cameras, I've been happy with them. Right now I have a SD880IS and the G9 (which is expensive but awesome....)
12-13-2008, 12:13 PM   #3

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QuoteOriginally posted by jas32 Quote
I'm a newbie here and tried to search for a discussion topic on this but came up empty. I suppose this probably changes quite often as new camera models come out literally every day.
There were some threads like what you're looking for in the P&S Forum.


But like you indicated, they somewhat read like a history lesson.

By the way, I use a Panasonic FX500 and I'm realy satisfied with it.
12-13-2008, 06:23 PM - 1 Like   #4
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Well, since you ask. I'll paste my reply from another thread......

I wanted a small pocketable point-and-shoot for those occasions where I did not want to lug the other gear.

It was a toss-up between this and a Panasonic LZ8, and the Nikon S550 was tempting for the size. I ruled out cameras that did not use an SD card. The Nikon did not have optical image stabilization, and the Panny was a bit bulgy due to the AA batteries. So, I decided on this camera after reading a few reviews.

I spent a couple lunch breaks just examining the features and how they interact (some features are limited or absent in certain modes), and went on one outing to have a real-world test.

I have mixed feelings about it.

Substantial feel.
Can produce nice images.
Red-eye reduction seems to work well.
Looks like decent editing software (which I've not used).

Has difficulty focusing, particularly in low light, and when digitally zoomed. Digital zoom on any camera is crap so I'm not too worried about it here.

Somewhat slow operation. The screen blanks out for 2 or 3 seconds (or an additional second or two if using flash) as the image is being written to the card. You can't change settings or do anything while this is happening.

Obvious barrel distortion at the wide end of the zoom.

*Quirks (May be good or bad according to your preferences):
Battery charges through the USB cable only, either from your PC's USB or a wall socket. This is convenient, yet it ties up your camera while charging. I got just under 200 shots in the real world, but over 450 at home when testing it. So, your mileage will vary greatly depending on how you are shooting.

Although there is a manual mode (M), you can only choose one of two apertures at whatever focal length you are at. These are normally the maximum and minimum available apertures. Though these choices really are sufficient, control freaks may be disappointed.

Continuous shooting is available in 2 modes, "continuous" and "shutter capture". "Continuous" is what most people think of but only about 1 shot per second (pretty slow). "Shutter capture" is a snappy 6 shots per second for a maximum of 5 seconds for a total of 30 shots. This is great performance - except the images are only 640 x 480 pixels, barely 4 x 6 inches at full size. The screen blanks out during all the shooting.

Exposure bracketing. This can be a great feature as it gives you three exposure choices. However, the difference is only 1/3 of a stop each way which is not very noticeable. It should be at least 1/2 stop (or more) either way to be useful, as editing software can adjust 1/3 stop easily. Also, the camera takes 3 shots in a row and the LCD will be blank during all of it, about 9 seconds.

The self-timer has some neat options such as taking 2 consecutive shots at a time (so you don't have to run back to the camera to "do" another one), or motion-detection that waits for everyone to settle down. However, once the shot is taken, the camera reverts to the normal mode. If you want to take a series of nights shots on a tripod with the self-timer to minimize blur, for example, you will have to set the self-timer each time.

Movie mode has a high-res option, yet at a reduced frame-rate so it may appear slightly choppy. You can zoom while filming, which is a plus. But, I can't get any sound when played on my desktop PC, though it is audible when played in the camera or on my laptop.

The user manual is on a PDF file. However, there is a dedicated "mode" on the dial that is a help guide. There is a printed quick-start quide to get you going, and as most the options are pretty straight-forward, you should not have a big problem operating the camera.

For a basic camera, I think it is OK, with a few good features. For anything advanced, you might think it is missing a few features. If it had a viewfinder, I would probably give it another star because the blank screen would be less of an issue as you could still accurately frame the subject.

10-05-2011, 04:24 AM - 1 Like   #5
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I use a Panasonic DMC-FS15 as a point-and-shoot camera and it is nothing short of brilliant. It also does a lot more that just point-and-shoot. I have also recommended other non-DSLR point-and-shoot Panasonic models to friends who are similarly impressed. It is my opinion that Canon and Nikon are only interested in professional DSLRs because their so-called point-and-shoot cameras are below par when compared to Panasonic products and other manufacturers too.

10-19-2011, 03:46 PM   #6
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I have been using my Panasonic lumix TZ6 for a cople of years now and it is almost faultless using ambient light. I use in a variety of modes and have a handle on how to push and pull the exposures when needed.

I get great shots hand held at slow shuuter speeds and even better shots on a tripod. Great from about 25mm to 300mm lens and no vignetting.

Worse point, poor skin tone rendition and bad shadowing using flash indoors unless you back it up with an off camera slave bounced of a white wall

Second downside, no matter how fast they quote the shutter responce, there is always a lag compared with an SLR and it can seem like years when it is ony 0.2 of a second ( not sure of real lag, just for illustrative purposes)
10-19-2011, 04:03 PM   #7
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Count me as an another fan of Panasonic's PnS cameras. I've owned three of them since 2003, the last one a TZ1 that worked flawlessly until it was stolen last year. I haven't gotten a replacement yet, but I'm borrowing my wife's old Canon Powershot A430 (4 mp), that refuses to die and takes quite nice photos.
10-19-2011, 05:29 PM   #8
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I'm fond of my old Panny Fz-7, (he's a little behind the times but I still love the design. ) Seems the Lumix line just does colors wonderfully. My Nikonian friend has an LX3, and I like the rendering. (Also very Steampunkey to be able to say, 'This device utilizes a Venus Engine.' )

I actually want a Pentax WG-1 for my sweetie, though. That'd be just about a perfect fit, and I'm pretty impressed.

If I were looking now for myself, I might wish for either a weatherproof Pentax bridge camera set up like a little version of their DSLRs, Or maybe one of those Fuji X100s, depending how they turn out. Or, well, I suppose I'd be looking at various things: might even be interesting to see where the Q system goes.

10-19-2011, 09:43 PM   #9
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Canon S90

Canon S90
10-20-2011, 04:21 AM   #10
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Pentax Optio 30

Pentax Optio 30... bought it in 2004 and it just keeps on clicking.

Could not be more pleased with this tiny P&S.

10-20-2011, 07:09 AM   #11
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This would be my LX5 right now.
10-20-2011, 07:15 AM   #12
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I have a W90 but only use it for the wet environments etc. Other Pentax P&S seem to come up very short for me. I use a E-P1 or GF2 to fill this roll currently or my Galaxy. My wife as an LX3 that rocks in this role.
10-20-2011, 09:48 AM   #13
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Panasonic GF1. It's a wonderful camera.

10-20-2011, 10:21 AM   #14
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When it comes to high end P&S cameras I've always done Fuji. They make great ones I think. Good value for the $$$. That being said my new little $2 pocket Polaroid is pretty cool. Screen's a little dark but it takes some nice pics for what it is.
10-21-2011, 02:25 AM   #15
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I use a Ricoh GRD-II now, but if I was in the market I would look at the Olympus XZ-1 (in fact that will be my next camera, I think)

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