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Author Topic: new point and shoot  (Read 4772 times)

mattpallante

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new point and shoot
« on: September 05, 2008, 09:54:32 am »

So I'm thinking of getting this new LX-3, which should be available this month. I really like the f2-f2.8 lens for speed and more selective depth of field. The 24mm-60mm range is right in my (Most of the time!) sweet spot. I like the 3" 460K display.
    I don't like the lack of a viewfinder, though the viewfinders on these point and shoots are very limited. Or, are there exceptions? I wonder if I will adapt to a camera with no viewfinder. I'm unsure if the aperture range stopping at f8 will be too limiting. I've heard an optical viewfinder will be available, but it will run $200-$300!
    I know we can't have everything, and if we did it sure would'nt be a $500 point and shoot, but I'd like to get other folks opinions on this camera, and others which they like and use. I also wonder when we might see a new Canon G10, and what it will be like, though I like the fact Panasonic seems to have sacrificed pixel count for quality pixels! Whoda thunk it?
                        Matt
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Robert Roaldi

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new point and shoot
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2008, 10:53:42 am »

I can only really reply to the viewfinder question so I will stick to that.

Whether you can adapt to not havng an optical viewfinder depends on your personal taste but let me tell you what I have found with my Fuji P&S (31fd). I need reading glasses now, and so using the LCD is a big pain for me. Aside from bright sunlight viewing issues, I can't properly see the LCD without glasses to begin with. When casually walking around, I don't want my reading glasses around my neck. So, the framing of shots is guess work, to some extent. Back home on the computer, I often discover details in pictures that I was unaware of when taking the picture. Also, I have lots of non-horizontal horizons. In some sense, for me, using a LCD viewfinder p&s is a lot like shooting with film. I don't know what I really have until I "develop" the picture.

I have owned a P&S with an optical viewfinder (Canon G3). The usual complaint with these is that they do not show 100% of the scene and that you can get parallax errors depending on subject distance. I find that the more I use a camera the better I can compensate for these, but I can't compensate for not being able to see the rear LCD.

Having said all that, for casual use I can live with the LCD framing. I lose the odd picture, but so what. I would not give up the chance to have a wider angle lens just because there was no optical viewfinder, for instance.

In the past week, my 31fd has developed an extreme banding problem and I think it's dieing. I am tempted by the wider angle LX3 and the Sony W170 (wider and optical finder but no diopter adjustment) but may end up with a Fuji 40fd just because it's cheaper and because I already have the right type of memory card for it. From what I can tell, these things aren't designed to last very long so even if you buy something you don't really like, it may not matter much  because you'll end up buying another in a year or two regardless.
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Jost von Allmen

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new point and shoot
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2008, 01:36:19 pm »

Hi Matt
I bought the LX-3 as soon as it was available here in Switzerland.
While I think it's the best compact digtal camera I have ever owned and used (including Canon G9 and Sony W170), considering it's image quality, it's not revolutionary!
I guess as long as they don't finally include a seriously bigger sensor (like APS-C) into those systems, there will still be a big gap between them and DSLRs.

However, obviously the lens (from 24mm) is great, and noise is quite well controlled:
Very good at the lowest settings (no noise at 80 ISO) and perfectly usable for me at 400 ISO.
What I really like about the LX-3 is it's general handling, speed, build quality, menu structure and options to configure it (as a photographer) in more ways than all the other compacts.

I didn't consider buying the extra viewfinder, because it will increase the size of the camera too much for me, and it's a bit pricy.
However with the preferences described, it might be a very good solution for you.

Actually you can't go wrong with buying one - but maybe just wait, till all the news from photokina have arrived....
« Last Edit: September 05, 2008, 01:38:15 pm by Jost von Allmen »
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Er1kksen

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new point and shoot
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2008, 04:35:37 pm »

You might want to hold of until after photokina, as the first micro4/3 cameras are slated to debut there, for sure from panasonic and possibly from olympus. Given the larger sensor and the proven capacity for great glass both of these companies have shown, they might well bring out your ideal compact.
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dalethorn

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new point and shoot
« Reply #4 on: September 05, 2008, 06:16:04 pm »

I've done some tests now comparing RAW images from the LX3 (converted to JPEG) to JPEG's from Pana's TZ5 with its 1/2.33 CCD.  In some cases, shooting against the light, the LX3 has shown lower noise in shadow areas, but in all other cases, the images look about like the TZ5's, viewed at 100 pct.  This is not what I expected from the LX3.  See my images in the user critiques.
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John Clifford

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« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2008, 02:31:31 am »

If you want the best image quality you can get in a point-and-shoot digicam, the only choice is the Sigma DP1. What you give up for that image quality is shooting speed/lag time, high ISO performance, and more than one focal length (the camera has a 28mm-equivalent f/4 lens). What you get are beautiful images.
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mattpallante

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new point and shoot
« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2008, 10:48:05 am »

I have been looking at the Ricoh GX200/GX100. I like the full coverage optical viewfinder. This camera seems to have been designed by a photographer, reading about it's features. It would run about $750 for the GX200 with viewfinder. I would really like a camera that has 24mm lens capibility, and it zooms to 70mm. Not quite as fast as the LX3 at f2.8 to 4.4. Does anyone have any experience with the Ricoh GX200 or GX100? I'll probably be making a decision after Photokina is done. Thanks for the replies so far.
                                             Matt
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Tony Beach

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new point and shoot
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2008, 04:14:29 pm »

Quote
I really like the f2-f2.8 lens for speed and more selective depth of field. The 24mm-60mm range is right in my (Most of the time!) sweet spot.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=219601\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Don't let the marketing hype regarding format equivalents fool you.  The actual lens is 5.1mm-12.8mm; which gives it the same "DOF isolation" as a 60mm lens at f/11 on a 135 format.
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cricketer 1

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« Reply #8 on: September 09, 2008, 06:28:42 pm »

Quote from: mattpallante,Sep 6 2008, 09:48 AM
I have been looking at the Ricoh GX200/GX100.

In answer to your question, I recently purchased a used Ricoh GX 100 with the VF-1 viewfinder after reading Michael Reichman's review on this site and reviews on other sites, and am very pleased with it.  (Unfortunately, Ricoh has no dealer in Canada where I live).  Like many DSLR users, there are times when you do not wish to lug heavy gear around.  It fits into a shirt pocket but I have more respect for it than to place it there.  Another bonus for SLR users is that security personnel around office towers and people in public places, etc,  generally ignore point and shooters.  

It has a very sharp fast f2.5 -f4.4 lens and a 24mm-70 35mm equivalent zoom, RAW format and image stabilization.  It fits well in my hands with nicely spaced controls and buttons.  I am not unduly bothered by it's slow buffering of RAW images or noise that is apparent at 400 asa, or difficulty in seeing the LCD in bright sunlight as the detachable viewfinder can be slipped on quickly.  It has so many fine features including excellent image quality.  The current GX200 is reputed to have a faster buffer and less noise which you can verify on the Ricoh website.
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Moynihan

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new point and shoot
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2008, 08:01:45 am »

Quote
I don't like the lack of a viewfinder, though the viewfinders on these point and shoots are very limited. Or, are there exceptions? I wonder if I will adapt to a camera with no viewfinder.
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I have one camera without a viewfinder. It is a Fuji F20. I attached one of those Delkin pop up shade things:
[a href=\"http://www.delkin.com/products/popupshades/mini/]http://www.delkin.com/products/popupshades/mini/[/url]

It helps..............some.

dalethorn

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new point and shoot
« Reply #10 on: September 28, 2008, 08:45:03 am »

I've just discovered (or realized) a feature of the Pana LX3 that may be unique among pocket cameras. If the camera's in a pocket or case of some kind and gets accidentally turned on (playback switch up for shooting), the lens will not attempt to pop out, because of Pana's safety feature to not do so when the lens cap is on.
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BernardLanguillier

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new point and shoot
« Reply #11 on: September 28, 2008, 10:00:55 am »

Quote
Does anyone have any experience with the Ricoh GX200 or GX100? I'll probably be making a decision after Photokina is done. Thanks for the replies so far.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=219827\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I don't use it much, but I have been owning one since it was out here in japan.

Good for a compact, but there is a significant amount of noise even at base ISO, and DR is of course nowhere near DSLR level. Lens is brilliant though, probably better than my Nikkor 24-70 f2.8 at 24 mm in terms of corner sharpness.

The GX-100/200 does remain one of the best, if not the best, compact out there IMHO.

Cheers,
Bernard
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