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Panasonic DMC-FZ20

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March 16, 2005 3:20:44 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

Just bought the DMC-FZ20 to replace a Fuji FP4900Zoom and the inital
impressions are interesting. Firstly, it makes me realise how
advanced the 4900Zoom was in 2000 when it was introduced.
The 4900Zoom ergonomics were/are excellent - although the FZ20 is
good, I find the location of the EVF a strange one being at the far
left side of the camera - the LCD gets smudged by ones nose!!
The Fuji has one more choice of file compression in the highest
resolution, it also had 2 locations to operate the zoom.
Fuji has little things like a lanyard on the lens cap and a dedicated
case which used the camera strap, and not another strap on the case.
The FZ20 does however that amazing stabilised Leica lens and the
double the zoom of the Fuji.
I wait with interest the quality of some pics - first impressions are
good.

More about : panasonic dmc fz20

Anonymous
March 17, 2005 12:38:26 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

Rob <colinstone@hotmail.com> wrote:
> Fuji has little things like a lanyard on the lens cap

My main quibble with the FZs, apart from the terrible neck strap!

pete
--
pete@fenelon.com "Send lawyers, guns and money...."
Anonymous
March 17, 2005 1:55:13 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

In article <18e7e4b7.0503161220.7e7afe4a@posting.google.com>, colinstone@hotmail.com says...
> , I find the location of the EVF a strange one being at the far
> left side of the camera - the LCD gets smudged by ones nose!!
>
>
Nope... Having a very dominant right eye I find it perfect !

T.
--
Please Tony, NO!! You'd look dreadful in a basque and fishnets..
Related resources
Anonymous
March 17, 2005 2:45:07 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

measekite wrote:
> Is the Panasonic FZ20, overall, the best Point and Shoot 5-7MP camera
on
> the market today. Is 5MP enough to do a 30% to 40% crop and print a
> sharp 8.5x11?

Do not know.

> Is the Leica lense on the Panasonic that much better than the
> competition? I do know of Leica's reputation on cameras and their
own
> slr lenses.

Believe so - the comparison resolution pics at dpreview.com shows that
it resolves to greater detail than some of the opposition. See
http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/panasonicfz20/page8.asp.
March 18, 2005 5:37:47 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

"Pete Fenelon" <pete@fenelon.com> wrote in message news:i09a1d.8nf.ln@fenelon.com...
> Rob <colinstone@hotmail.com> wrote:
> > Fuji has little things like a lanyard on the lens cap
>
> My main quibble with the FZs, apart from the terrible neck strap!

I hope you didn't buy it just for the neck strap. You forgot to snipe about
the off center tripod hole and the lack of a swivel LCD. I personally bought
it for the quality of the optics, the IS and the beautiful f2.8 12x zoom lens.
I can forgive them the mediocre neck strap and the lack of lens cap tether.
Anonymous
March 18, 2005 9:27:13 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

In article <i09a1d.8nf.ln@fenelon.com>, Pete Fenelon <pete@fenelon.com>
wrote:

> > Fuji has little things like a lanyard on the lens cap
>
> My main quibble with the FZs, apart from the terrible neck strap!

Can't you buy little stick-on lanyards?

I leave the lens adaptor/hood on semi-permanently and have replaced the
supplies cap with a generic 72mm one.

--
YAnewsWatcher.
Anonymous
March 18, 2005 9:27:14 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

Is the Panasonic FZ20, overall, the best Point and Shoot 5-7MP camera on
the market today. Is 5MP enough to do a 30% to 40% crop and print a
sharp 8.5x11?

Is the Leica lense on the Panasonic that much better than the
competition? I do know of Leica's reputation on cameras and their own
slr lenses.

YAnewswatcher wrote:

>In article <i09a1d.8nf.ln@fenelon.com>, Pete Fenelon <pete@fenelon.com>
>wrote:
>
>
>
>>>Fuji has little things like a lanyard on the lens cap
>>>
>>>
>>My main quibble with the FZs, apart from the terrible neck strap!
>>
>>
>
>Can't you buy little stick-on lanyards?
>
>I leave the lens adaptor/hood on semi-permanently and have replaced the
>supplies cap with a generic 72mm one.
>
>
>
Anonymous
March 18, 2005 9:27:15 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

measekite wrote:
> Is the Panasonic FZ20, overall, the best Point and Shoot 5-7MP camera
> on the market today.

It depend what you want to do with it! Do you want very wide-angle
shooting, an articulated LCD, a very small camera, or 640 x 480 movies?
Then, no, as it doesn't offer those features. Do you want an image
stabilised long zoom camera with a top-quality f/2.8 lens? Then yes.

> Is 5MP enough to do a 30% to 40% crop and print a sharp 8.5x11?

Your question about prints begs the question: what do you mean by sharp?
I have seen good A4 sized prints from 3.2MP cameras, so cropping 35% of
the pixels from a 5MP image should be OK. That's a 17% linear crop.

David
Anonymous
March 18, 2005 9:33:02 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

"Ken" <ken@ken.ken> writes:

> "Pete Fenelon" <pete@fenelon.com> wrote in message news:i09a1d.8nf.ln@fenelon.com...
> > Rob <colinstone@hotmail.com> wrote:
> > > Fuji has little things like a lanyard on the lens cap
> >
> > My main quibble with the FZs, apart from the terrible neck strap!
>
> I hope you didn't buy it just for the neck strap. You forgot to snipe about
> the off center tripod hole and the lack of a swivel LCD. I personally bought
> it for the quality of the optics, the IS and the beautiful f2.8 12x zoom
> lens. I can forgive them the mediocre neck strap and the lack of lens cap
> tether.

My main quibble has always been the external flash interface -- when you shoot
in manual mode (which you need to do with non-TTL flashes), the EVF/LCD
reflects the actual aperture you select (ie, f/4, f/5.6, etc.) which means it
is very dark, and hard to frame.

A secondary quibble is the placement of the memory door in the battery
compartment, which means you have to remove the camera from the flash bracket
or tripod just to change memory cards. Having the tripod screw that close to
the battery door means you can't use any of the standard quick release
adaptors.

It also would be nice to have a less aggresive JPG compression.

--
Michael Meissner
email: mrmnews@the-meissners.org
http://www.the-meissners.org
March 18, 2005 6:05:47 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

"Michael Meissner" <mrmnews@the-meissners.org> wrote in message news:m364zptci9.fsf@glinda.the-meissners.org...

> My main quibble has always been the external flash interface -- when you shoot
> in manual mode (which you need to do with non-TTL flashes), the EVF/LCD
> reflects the actual aperture you select (ie, f/4, f/5.6, etc.) which means it
> is very dark, and hard to frame.

Yes, it would be nice if the display gained up in low light situations. The darkend display
is actually a design "feature" that backfired on them.

> A secondary quibble is the placement of the memory door in the battery
> compartment, which means you have to remove the camera from the flash bracket
> or tripod just to change memory cards. Having the tripod screw that close to
> the battery door means you can't use any of the standard quick release
> adaptors.

I solved the tripod hole problem by making a simple adapter. I can keep a tripod quick release
plate on the camera and still change the battery or memory card. Still have to take the camera
off the tripod but at least I don't have to remove the quick release plate.

http://ken.smugmug.com/photos/17316489-L.jpg

There is a guy on ebay that is selling a FZ-20 tripod adapter for $12. Not quite as versatile
as the one I designed but better than nothing.

http://search.ebay.com/_W0QQsassZrobobear
Anonymous
March 18, 2005 8:06:43 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

"Ken" <ken@ken.ken> writes:

> "Michael Meissner" <mrmnews@the-meissners.org> wrote in message news:m364zptci9.fsf@glinda.the-meissners.org...
>
> > My main quibble has always been the external flash interface -- when you shoot
> > in manual mode (which you need to do with non-TTL flashes), the EVF/LCD
> > reflects the actual aperture you select (ie, f/4, f/5.6, etc.) which means it
> > is very dark, and hard to frame.
>
> Yes, it would be nice if the display gained up in low light situations. The darkend display
> is actually a design "feature" that backfired on them.

I can understand it in the FZ10, since it was there first camera with an
external flash. But to repeat the mistake in the FZ20 after tons of people
have complained about it is just hard headedness. Every camera vendor seems to
have their own areas of blindness, that no amount of clue-by-4's seem to
overcome.

> > A secondary quibble is the placement of the memory door in the battery
> > compartment, which means you have to remove the camera from the flash bracket
> > or tripod just to change memory cards. Having the tripod screw that close to
> > the battery door means you can't use any of the standard quick release
> > adaptors.
>
> I solved the tripod hole problem by making a simple adapter. I can keep a tripod quick release
> plate on the camera and still change the battery or memory card. Still have to take the camera
> off the tripod but at least I don't have to remove the quick release plate.
>
> http://ken.smugmug.com/photos/17316489-L.jpg
>
> There is a guy on ebay that is selling a FZ-20 tripod adapter for $12. Not quite as versatile
> as the one I designed but better than nothing.
>
> http://search.ebay.com/_W0QQsassZrobobear

Yep. I just don't get why manufacturers seem to go out of their way to put in
tripod sockets that aren't at the nodal point, made out of metal, and far
enough away from the battery door so quick release mechanisms can be used. I
get the sense that some of the designers just don't understand how a camera is
used by higher end users.

--
Michael Meissner
email: mrmnews@the-meissners.org
http://www.the-meissners.org
March 19, 2005 7:24:55 AM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

"Michael Meissner" <mrmnews@the-meissners.org> wrote in message news:m3d5twr4lo.fsf@tiktok.the-meissners.org...

> Yep. I just don't get why manufacturers seem to go out of their way to put in
> tripod sockets that aren't at the nodal point, made out of metal, and far
> enough away from the battery door so quick release mechanisms can be used. I
> get the sense that some of the designers just don't understand how a camera is
> used by higher end users.

Even thought I have never cracked the case on my FZ I have always presumed that
it was a design trade-off to accomodate the placement of a much more important
part of the camera's internal mechanisms. If it was placed there intentionally the person
responsible should be burned at the stake.
Anonymous
March 19, 2005 12:46:54 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

"Ken" <ken@ken.ken> writes:

> "Michael Meissner" <mrmnews@the-meissners.org> wrote in message
> news:m3d5twr4lo.fsf@tiktok.the-meissners.org...
>
> > Yep. I just don't get why manufacturers seem to go out of their way to put
> > in tripod sockets that aren't at the nodal point, made out of metal, and
> > far enough away from the battery door so quick release mechanisms can be
> > used. I get the sense that some of the designers just don't understand how
> > a camera is used by higher end users.
>
> Even thought I have never cracked the case on my FZ I have always presumed
> that it was a design trade-off to accomodate the placement of a much more
> important part of the camera's internal mechanisms. If it was placed there
> intentionally the person responsible should be burned at the stake.

That's because manufacturers don't think it is important to do the job right.
They know they have to put a socket in, but don't take the time to design it
properly, possibily because they assume their market segment doesn't care. For
95-99% of the users, that is probably true.

--
Michael Meissner
email: mrmnews@the-meissners.org
http://www.the-meissners.org
Anonymous
March 19, 2005 5:59:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

> >>>>Yep. I just don't get why manufacturers seem to go out of their
way to put
> >>>>in tripod sockets that aren't at the nodal point, made out of
metal, and
> >>>>far enough away from the battery door so quick release mechanisms
can be
> >>>>used. I get the sense that some of the designers just don't
understand how
> >>>>a camera is used by higher end users.

With many cameras, having the socket under the lens centre would add
6mm to the camera height to allow for the socket depth. I think it is
a case of trying to keep the dimensions down.

BTW, as with other computer driven projects, does firmware for cameras
get updated/new versions???? Has anyone managed to extract and reverse
engineer a cameras "BIOS". I would have thought that with a USB
connection, this should be possible.
March 19, 2005 7:28:28 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

"Michael Meissner" <mrmnews@the-meissners.org> wrote in message news:m3wts38zhd.fsf@glinda.the-meissners.org...
> "Ken" <ken@ken.ken> writes:
>
> > "Michael Meissner" <mrmnews@the-meissners.org> wrote in message
> > news:m3d5twr4lo.fsf@tiktok.the-meissners.org...
> >
> > > Yep. I just don't get why manufacturers seem to go out of their way to put
> > > in tripod sockets that aren't at the nodal point, made out of metal, and
> > > far enough away from the battery door so quick release mechanisms can be
> > > used. I get the sense that some of the designers just don't understand how
> > > a camera is used by higher end users.
> >
> > Even thought I have never cracked the case on my FZ I have always presumed
> > that it was a design trade-off to accomodate the placement of a much more
> > important part of the camera's internal mechanisms. If it was placed there
> > intentionally the person responsible should be burned at the stake.
>
> That's because manufacturers don't think it is important to do the job right.
> They know they have to put a socket in, but don't take the time to design it
> properly, possibily because they assume their market segment doesn't care. For
> 95-99% of the users, that is probably true.

The consumer is as much to blame as the manufacturer. If the consumers were willing
to pay for what it costs to design a product for maximum functionality the manufacturers
would be more than willing to provide it for them. Consumers are typically frugal bastards
who want the best products for prices much less than what manufacturers can afford to
produce them. Manufacturers have to keep product costs down to appeal to the market
segment that can afford them and if that means placing the tripod socket off to one side
the consumer shares in the blame. I don't think it fair to blame the manufacturers exclusively.
The old adage that you get what you pay for is as true today as it was when it was
first coined.
Anonymous
March 19, 2005 9:20:32 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

Ken wrote:

>"Michael Meissner" <mrmnews@the-meissners.org> wrote in message news:m3wts38zhd.fsf@glinda.the-meissners.org...
>
>
>>"Ken" <ken@ken.ken> writes:
>>
>>
>>
>>>"Michael Meissner" <mrmnews@the-meissners.org> wrote in message
>>>news:m3d5twr4lo.fsf@tiktok.the-meissners.org...
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>>Yep. I just don't get why manufacturers seem to go out of their way to put
>>>>in tripod sockets that aren't at the nodal point, made out of metal, and
>>>>far enough away from the battery door so quick release mechanisms can be
>>>>used. I get the sense that some of the designers just don't understand how
>>>>a camera is used by higher end users.
>>>>
>>>>
>>>Even thought I have never cracked the case on my FZ I have always presumed
>>>that it was a design trade-off to accomodate the placement of a much more
>>>important part of the camera's internal mechanisms. If it was placed there
>>>intentionally the person responsible should be burned at the stake.
>>>
>>>
>>That's because manufacturers don't think it is important to do the job right.
>>They know they have to put a socket in, but don't take the time to design it
>>properly, possibily because they assume their market segment doesn't care. For
>>95-99% of the users, that is probably true.
>>
>>
>
>The consumer is as much to blame as the manufacturer. If the consumers were willing
>to pay for what it costs to design a product for maximum functionality the manufacturers
>would be more than willing to provide it for them. Consumers are typically frugal bastards
>who want the best products for prices much less than what manufacturers can afford to
>produce them.
>

That because they want the consumers to support those piggish upper
management bastards. Look at Carli at HP. That is bullshit!

>Manufacturers have to keep product costs down to appeal to the market
>segment that can afford them and if that means placing the tripod socket off to one side
>the consumer shares in the blame. I don't think it fair to blame the manufacturers exclusively.
>The old adage that you get what you pay for
>
Yeh, that is why a DSLR costs about 4 time more than an SLR.

>is as true today as it was when it was
>first coined.
>
>
>
>
Anonymous
March 20, 2005 2:07:32 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

colinstone@hotmail.com wrote:
[]
> BTW, as with other computer driven projects, does firmware for cameras
> get updated/new versions???? Has anyone managed to extract and
> reverse engineer a cameras "BIOS". I would have thought that with a
> USB connection, this should be possible.

Yes, the firmware for my Nikon Cameras has had one update for each model,
as I recall.

Someone reverse engineered the Canon BIOS for the deliberately crippled
300 DSLR, and uncrippled many of the features....

Cheers,
David
Anonymous
March 28, 2005 4:51:48 PM

Archived from groups: rec.photo.digital.zlr (More info?)

Ken <ken@ken.ken> wrote:
>
> "Pete Fenelon" <pete@fenelon.com> wrote in message news:i09a1d.8nf.ln@fenelon.com...
>> Rob <colinstone@hotmail.com> wrote:
>> > Fuji has little things like a lanyard on the lens cap
>>
>> My main quibble with the FZs, apart from the terrible neck strap!
>
> I hope you didn't buy it just for the neck strap. You forgot to snipe about
> the off center tripod hole and the lack of a swivel LCD. I personally bought
> it for the quality of the optics, the IS and the beautiful f2.8 12x zoom lens.
> I can forgive them the mediocre neck strap and the lack of lens cap tether.

Indeed. A few quid on a decent Tamrac strap and I was using the camera
in comfort. The lens is astonishingly good (it's still surprising me
after nine months with an FZ10), and the combination of f2.8 and IS means
that you rarely need a tripod!

pete
--
pete@fenelon.com "Send lawyers, guns and money...."
!