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Digital cameras you are considering for upcoming safari???

Digital cameras you are considering for upcoming safari???

Sep 29th, 2005, 07:04 PM
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 18
as per one of the earliest posts on this thread, we bought the Panasonic Lumix Z20 w/ 12 x zoom for our Singita trip...I am an absolute know nothing guy re: cameras and neve owned a digital before...didn't even try it till we got there...the fact that it has 'simple mode" made it a breeze and my photos are off the charts...thanks to this thread, the world's most amateur photographer (me0 had huge success...very cool indeed (oh, and singita wasn't too bad either ;}

fanelli is offline  
Oct 12th, 2005, 09:12 PM
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 49
Do I need an external zoom lens or can we rely on a built in zoom in the camera that comes with the camera?
536547869 is offline  
Oct 17th, 2005, 12:19 PM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 2,501

The only way you can get an external zoom is to buy an SLR, which is more than most casual photographers need (if you are a serious photographer, that's a different story).

If you buy a prosumer digitial camera with 10x or 12x OPTICAL zoom (ideally with optical stabilisation to keep images from blurring when you use the far end of that zoom lens), you will be fine. The best cameras in this class are the Panasonic Lumix range -- FZ20, FZ30, etc. Many of us (including me) own and use the FZ20 and have obtained amazing results.

Digital zoom is next to useless -- the quality of the photos degrades noticeably. Don't let a slick sales person tell you that 12x digital zoom is the same thing as 12x optical -- it most definitely isnt't!

Search for 'FZ20' or 'Panasonic camera' if you want to read more about this range of cameras.

jasher is offline  
Oct 18th, 2005, 12:39 AM
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 5,215
Besides the Panasonic FZ20, Canon and Sony have almost identical models. Take a look at all of them if you can.
regards - tom
cary999 is offline  
Oct 18th, 2005, 02:42 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 304
I used a Canon S1 in June when we went to Kenya and Tanzania, and what a great camera that is. The only drawback to the S1 is that it is only 3 megapixels, not enough if you want to blow up a photo larger than 8x10. I didn't think I would ever want to do that, but then I went to Africa, and guess what? African photos can be so cool, so beautiful, that, by gosh and hot-damn, I would be perfectly happy if I could make huge murals and plaster them all over the house and pretend every day that I was back in the Serengeti or in the Masai Mara!!!
So, since I'm probably going back next summer to take my son as a college graduation present, I decided to get a camera with more megapixels. And to make a long story short, it boiled down to the Canon S2 and the Panasonic FZ5, both cameras having 5 mps and 12x optical zoom. I decided to go with the Panasonic FZ5 because I could get it on the internet for about $350, but I couldn't touch the S2 for less than around $500. If you go to www.dpreview.com, you'll also see some other differences, such as the fact that the FZ5 weighs significantly less than the S2. I am extremely happy with my FZ5, but I know the S2 is a great camera, too. You can't go wrong with either one. Jack
wjsonl is offline  
Nov 27th, 2005, 05:13 AM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1
Hi, sorry to return to an earlier thread, but had a problem with a Lexar CF card on my 20D..I had taken a number of images and then the dreaded CF ERR popped up forcing the card useless. Without Formatting it, I simply downloaded a free application called PC Inspector at www.pcinspector.de - roamed through all the sectors on the card an recovered everything (even when you have formatted the card it can be used). One of those great life saving apps we Digital users can depend on...It even found images I had previously wiped off on an earlier format. Just wanted the world to know !
cybershot is offline  
Nov 27th, 2005, 10:08 AM
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 43
I need to get a new camera (point and shoot), so I thought I could get some suggestions from this posting as what would be a good choice....BUT I can see I am way out of my league here. You all sound like professionals and the pictures prove it. They are amazing!!

I have a 3 megapixal Sony now and I have been happy with it. I was thinking about getting another Sony since I have memory cards already. YET...Sony has rarely been mentioned in this posting. Is it because there is a problem with Sony cameras???
MariMari is offline  
Nov 27th, 2005, 01:06 PM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 121

My first digital was the 3 MP Sony DSC-P7. I upgraded to a Panasonic Fz20 for the zoom needed for wildlife shots and now I'm thinking about making the leap to dSLR.

To address your question, there is nothing wrong with Sony cameras. The Sony H1 mentioned above is rated as a good camera. HOWEVER, I assume your 3 MP is a few years old. Mine can only take a max 128 mb card and I don't think it's compatible with the new Memory Stick Pro media. One of the major advantages of the newer digicams is the ability to shoot 640x480 video at 30 frames/sec, but for Sony's this requires the Pro version of the memory stick. Thus, if you own only regular memory sticks, forget about them and make your camera decision independent of any pre-conceived brand.

Memory gets cheaper all the time. When I got my Sony a 128 mb memory stick cost around $80. I just ordered a 1 GB high-speed SanDisk Ultra II SD card that will be $60 after rebate. I'd switch to a camera that takes the secure digital because that's where the point-and-shoot industry is heading (and, to a lesser extent, the consumer dSLRs as well). Feel free to check out the Sony H1, but also look at the S2 IS from Canon and the Panasonic Fz4 or Fz5.

99mkw is offline  
Nov 27th, 2005, 02:22 PM
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 43
You are so right about my camera being from "the past". When you mentioned 'memory stick pro', I recall reading that when I was looking at new Sonys....not realizing that my old sticks will not work.

SO.....I am printing your reply and I will use it as a guide when I am ready to buy....probably after Christmas. Thank you for helping me!!!!
MariMari is offline  
Nov 27th, 2005, 04:32 PM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 4,222
I am not a photography person, and I just got the FZ5 in the mail yesterday. In the semi-dark this evening, with very little manual studying, I took some photos in my backyard. Compared to what I am used to, they are FANTASTIC. Can't wait to get familiar with this camera, and I'm looking forward to seeing how much better my shots turn out in TZ in June!

And, by the way, I bought it based on this very thread. Thanks all.
Leely is offline  
Nov 28th, 2005, 06:16 AM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 20,132
Hi Matt,
Where did you get the San disks /c rebate for 60.USD?
I shot some photos of a lighthouse and my cottage down the Cape 1 mile away with clarity with my Fz30. I'm very impressed - love it.
cybor is offline  
Nov 28th, 2005, 07:05 AM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 121

I bought mine from Buy.com and their rebate EXPIRES TODAY (it's a decent site but they force you to register). I noticed on Pricegrabber.com that a few other vendors also have the rebate-- their list prices are a bit higher but maybe you have more time. I should also mention that you can get $20 off the Ultra II compact flash, memory stick pro, or MS pro Duo if that's what your camera takes.

99mkw is offline  
Dec 1st, 2005, 09:02 AM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 121
For those that missed the Ultra II rebate but are looking for memory, there is a $10 rebate on the 1 gb Kingston Elite Pro SD card for a final price of $50 delivered (see pricegrabber). Not as theoretically fast as Ultra II but you won't notice difference in 99% of world's cameras (exception may be something like Pentax dSLR).
99mkw is offline  

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