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Compact Superzoom Suggestions?

Discussion in 'Other Systems' started by Biro, Dec 19, 2011.

  1. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Hi there... very occasionally I still find a use for a compact superzoom, usually in situations where anything other than a compact is either not allowed or is simply impractical. Hard to believe, but sometimes even :43: won't fill the bill - particularly if you need smallness and zoom range.

    Currently, I have a Canon SX230 HS, which generally is considered to have the best image quality in this class - particularly at higher ISOs. I have no reason to doubt this. But, of course, this being basically a point-and-shoot camera, shutter response is still just a bit off (but better than such cameras were even two years ago) and I find the zoom action to be a bit slow. Yes, I'm well-aware of the general limitations of these cameras.

    So, my questions for mu-43.com's best and brightest are: Are any you still using a compact superzoom camera? If so, which one? Do you have any suggestions for me - a camera like this with fast response and image quality comparable to the SX230 HS? And what about Fuji's F600/550/500 EXR family of cameras? I like reaching outside of the box and I'm tempted to try one. But they get very mixed reviews.

    Of course, it may be that I already have the best camera in the class already and this is as good as it's going to get for a while. But I'd appreciate the feedback because most professional reviews really don't answer my questions and general consumer reviews simply can't be trusted. But you guys... yeah, I trust you guys. :) 
  2. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    My wife bought a Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS10 this spring. Just under $300 at Costco. She is very pleased with it.

    I am now going through our images from a trip to Southern Africa and hers are astonishingly good competition to mine taken with a G1 and a 100-300. The biggest problem, common to all these little viewfinderless cameras, is camera motion.

    One thing she wanted was a better wide-angle. The ZS10 goes to 24mm (equivalent), which IMHO is enough for good interior shots where 28mm is simply not wide enough to give a sense of space.
  3. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Check out the Olympus SZ-10. Sweet little camera, with quick response for a point and shoot and an 18x zoom starting at 28mm. It's surprisingly small for a camera of its versatility.
  4. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Now that's an interesting suggestion because I had written off Oly's compact superzooms (like almost all of their compact cameras) as not being top-tier in their segment. But I'll check it out.
  5. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    This year's batch of Oly P&Ss of all models perform much better than previous years - including response, picture quality, and even style. Since the PEN technology has a lot in common with Point-and-Shoot technology, I imagine all their hard work in R&D for the PEN line is trickling down now. I mean, they were the first to get CDAF to work as fast as PDAF, in a mirrorless camera that responds instantly in every way. You'd think they'd be able to make a decent performing compact too, right? Comparing this year's models with a couple years ago, I'd say yes. :) 
  6. phrenic

    phrenic Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 13, 2010
    I'm a big fan of the Panasonic ZS series for that sort of purpose..I've been tempted to pick one up up again if I see a deal. Prints nicely up to 8x10 imho.
  7. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Uh, sorry. The EP3 I assume you're referring to finally caught up to the GH2 and G3 that had been out for almost a full year before Olympus went from "marginal" AF speed to "state of the competition".

    The EP3 is only remarkable in comparison to its dog-slow predecessors, not in any way the Panny lineup
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