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Old 13th Mar 2019, 6:18 pm   #1
merlinmaxwell
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Default My new camera

I have got a bit fed up with lugging about my Canaon DSLR and decided to go for a good compact digital camera. After some research I got myself a Panasonic Lumix TZ100 https://www.panasonic.com/uk/consume...c-tz100eb.html I am more than a trifle impressed. OK it has only one zoom lens but it will do for most situations, picture quality is better than any 35mm film camera I have owned. Very portable (just sits in my jacket pocket, ready for action). Obviously the DLSR won't go into retirement but I will have a camera with me at all times without losing it (leave bag in pub etc.).
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Old 13th Mar 2019, 7:08 pm   #2
SiriusHardware
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Default Re: My new camera

SWMBO has been using one of its recent ancestors, the TZ60, for a couple of years now. Can't fault it, if the TZ100 is even 80% as good then you have yourself a nice little camera. It can even shoot in RAW, which is relatively rare on a handheld compact.

Did you get a separate out-of-camera battery charger with it though? - the TZ60 didn't come with one, so the only place to charge the battery was in-camera - annoying if you have more than one battery. We bought a third party mains and DC powered charger / pod so we could charge batteries and use the camera at the same time.
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Old 13th Mar 2019, 7:16 pm   #3
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Default Re: My new camera

Very nice. Know what you mean about the DSLR. I know this sounds dreadfully perverse, but I use my digital cameras mostly for copying negatives and slides, which I still shoot on my film cameras and develop myself. I get a far greater sense of achievement out of using film and, to me it retains the magic that doesn't exist with the picture-perfect digital format. No 'chimping', no instant gratification... Someone said to me 'what if you take a botched shot?' To which I replied 'but why would I do that? I've taken plenty botched shots on film and digital, as well as many a shot 'which seemed a good idea at the time'.

I use my Canon EOS 5D DSLR for copying 35mm and my Sony RX-100 II for copying 6x6.

I haven't ditched digital photography altogether, and use it for colour shots (colour chems are expensive and don't last long when made up) and for 'work' shots: 'scope and VNA displays, etc... I'm not above taking the little Sony out with my Pentax MX or Mess-Baldix either.

There's no doubting that digital photography is a fantastic thing. I reckon mirrorless cameras will do well as it's realtively easy to fit old lenses to them without infinity compensation and reap the quality of old glass.
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Old 13th Mar 2019, 7:18 pm   #4
merlinmaxwell
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Default Re: My new camera

Quote:
Did you get a separate out-of-camera battery charger with it though?
No I didn't, however one and a spare third party battery are coming (remarkably cheaply). Real test tomorrow, how does it do inside a museum?
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Old 13th Mar 2019, 7:20 pm   #5
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Default Re: My new camera

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I get a far greater sense of achievement out of using film.
My darkroom hasn't been used in years, converted it into the dedicated electronics workshop. Now I take pictures rather than get bogged down in all those chemicals, fun as it was.
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Old 13th Mar 2019, 7:47 pm   #6
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Default Re: My new camera

I have an older (much cheaper) Lumix model and have been very impressed with it. I normally leave it on full automatic and it works amazingly well, even with difficult shots such as directly into sunlight.

Older digital compacts are appearing in charity shops now, as people decide to just use their phone cameras, and there are some real bargains to be had.
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Old 13th Mar 2019, 8:37 pm   #7
russell_w_b
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Default Re: My new camera

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Originally Posted by merlinmaxwell View Post
My darkroom hasn't been used in years ... Now I take pictures rather than get bogged down in all those chemicals, fun as it was.

I don't have a darkroom - our club used to have one at work - and I just use a changing bag at the kitchen sink. From putting a film in the tank to hanging up the negs in the shower to dry (less dust) takes about fifty mins. I could spend that time bimbling about with images on the PC!

Then when I've copied the negs to digital, THAT'S when I bimble about on the PC.
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Old 14th Mar 2019, 9:23 am   #8
Dickie
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Default Re: My new camera

I have had a TZ100 for just about a year now, and It's never been found wanting.It usually gets used as a "point and shoot camera", but on occasion I pluck up the courage and try something more ambitious and its quite remarkable. Especially the macro zoom facility, the various video options, and its low light ability. The only problem I have is remembering to put it back to automatic "point and shoot" before turning it off. Otherwise the other half gets very cross when she tries to use it and it doesn't do what she expects.
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Old 14th Mar 2019, 10:46 am   #9
Hartley118
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Default Re: My new camera

For over 10 years now, I've had great service from a number of the Panasonic TZ series cameras. They've always been very easy and quick to use, giving decent quality pictures, particularly in good light. The way that the electronics automatically compensates for the natural aberrations in lens performance is quite remarkable. The main remaining limitation has been sensor and electronic noise becoming obvious at higher gain (high ISO) settings.

I've now been enjoying using the TZ100 for a few months and find its larger sensor has introduced a much improved signal-noise ratio, making the camera very usable in poor light. I now at last can usually leave the SLR and its heavy lens collection at home because the picture quality of the TZ100 is good enough for most of my requirements.

It claims to have a 'one inch' sensor which, in the especially strange language used to describe camera sensors, doesn't mean any of its dimensions are one inch. As far as I can gather, it refers to the size of sensor that was used in a one--inch diameter professional video camera tube back in the day. Anyway, its noise performance seems comparable to my 'micro four thirds' SLR (more obscure language!).

As usual, it's difficult to keep up with developments and I see that there's now a TZ200 on the market, which seems to be a TZ100 with a still wider zoom range. Should I respond to temptation?

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Old 14th Mar 2019, 10:55 am   #10
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Default Re: My new camera

Quote:
Should I respond to temptation?
Of course...
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Old 14th Mar 2019, 3:50 pm   #11
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Default Re: My new camera

I am amazed how good a sub 100 camera can do.
I have just tried a raw image and zoomed it up on a desktop computer.
The full image obviously does not have any justice done to it by posting it in the forum however taking a close up by cropping I was able to get part of the image up at full definition with the first signs of noise from the CCD.
For a plastic lens it is not that bad.
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Old 14th Mar 2019, 10:36 pm   #12
Tyso_Bl
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Default Re: My new camera

Quote:
Originally Posted by paulsherwin View Post
Older digital compacts are appearing in charity shops now, as people decide to just use their phone cameras, and there are some real bargains to be had.
Very true, I recently bought a HP compact 5mp from a local animal shelter charity for 1.50, decent enough, and fine to stuff into the works bag as I don't have a smartfone anymore.

Couple of weeks later from the same place a Fuji S5600 complete kit with bag, card instructions, accessories, for 15.00 . About the going rate, but the money going to help animals makes it a no brainer for me.

T
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Old 15th Mar 2019, 2:40 am   #13
SiriusHardware
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Default Re: My new camera

We have its successor the S5700 in our stable but it has always had a tendency to over expose whenever it is left to its own devices, which means we have to use it Program mode all the time and keep the exposure dialled down a couple of steps.

It has a (for the time) respectable 10X optical zoom, good for stand-off shots of nervous subjects like butterflies and dragonflies, and still the best super-macro capability of any camera we own.
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Old 15th Mar 2019, 12:28 pm   #14
brunel
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Default Re: My new camera

Two essentials in a camera

1. Eye level viewfinder.

2. Shoot in a RAW format.

Raw format requires post processing, There are a few free programmes available if you search carefully, they do have a bit of a learning curve.

https://www.darktable.org/

I use an elderly version of ADOBE LIGHTROOM.

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Old 15th Mar 2019, 12:47 pm   #15
Radio Wrangler
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Default Re: My new camera

If you want a free photo editor, there's the Gnu Image Manipulation Program usually shortened to "GIMP" But be cautious if you type that name into a search engine

It's quite comprehensive and regularly updated but expects you to be fairly familiar with creatin executable files. Every now and then someone creates a wrapped-up easy to load version.

At the top end of the scale there is Adobe's Photoshop but it's no longer an expensive purchase, it's now an expensive monthly rental. When you stop paying, it stops working. Being a user must feel like being an involuntary blood donor, there are all sorts of lock-ins.

Lightroom is Adobe's photo library organiser with basic adjustments. Supposed to be quite good.

I've settled on Affinity's Photo programme. Just about a full equal of photoshop, and smooth to use. A one-shot purchase, and affordable. This is a full blooded editor. No library, but I look after my own files.

David
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Old 15th Mar 2019, 1:26 pm   #16
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Default Re: My new camera

Another good free programme is CHASYS DRAW

http://www.jpchacha.com/chasysdraw/index.php
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Old 15th Mar 2019, 1:57 pm   #17
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Default Re: My new camera

Quote:
Originally Posted by SiriusHardware View Post
We have its successor the S5700 in our stable but it has always had a tendency to over expose whenever it is left to its own devices, which means we have to use it Program mode all the time and keep the exposure dialled down a couple of steps.

It has a (for the time) respectable 10X optical zoom, good for stand-off shots of nervous subjects like butterflies and dragonflies, and still the best super-macro capability of any camera we own.
Talking of insect photography, I often use the older Lumix LX5 , which is also great for low light and landscape photography. For more serious macro work, I use a Canon Eos 1100D either with a dedicated macro lens or modified legacy lenses.
Here are some of my bugs
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Old 15th Mar 2019, 3:04 pm   #18
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Default Re: My new camera

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Originally Posted by brunel View Post

I use an elderly version of ADOBE LIGHTROOM.
I do too (LR 3.6), and can link to my elderly version of Photoshop 7 as an editor. Essential for inverting negs.

Trouble with that version of Lightroom is that whilst it takes CR2 (Canon) RAW files, it won't take Sony ARW RAW files (why do camera / software manufacturers do this? ) and I have to use the Sony software to conver to TIFF files first. Then it's no bother. Fuji files didn't work directly either.

RAW is best as it's more likely you in control of the pic than the camera, which just fires an image out from an algorithm as to what the camera 'thinks' it sees as determined by the manufacturer. But even RAW isn't completely naked.

Faststone viewer will open proprietary RAW files from different manufactuirers and Irfanview (freeware) will but editing is limited.

I won't be buying another Sony. They're too finicky, a little precious to use and until I got it, didn't realise there was so much stuff I could do without. I was tempted by the Panasonic range and if I don't go back to Canon when the Sony gives up the ghost, I may consider a Lumix. But only if it has a decent macro setting. By that happening they'll be well-upgraded anyway.
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Old 15th Mar 2019, 4:00 pm   #19
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Default Re: My new camera

Another free photo editor worth a look is Nikon's Capture NX-D
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Old 15th Mar 2019, 6:10 pm   #20
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Default Re: My new camera

My latest camera is a Fuji X-T20. This is a truly excellent camera and if like me you hanker after 'traditional' styling yet with the best that digital imaging can provide, this is worth serious consideration. It creates astoundingly good raw images - I take most in raw - and also videos in ultra-high definition.

The raw files output in Fuji's RAF format but are easily converted. I use Adobe's free DNG converter to load files into Lightroom and Photoshop.
The camera is extremely versatile and the range of settings for jpg include a film simulator. Ultra-high definition video is a joy to use, too, though it eats memory and you do need a suitable card.

As for Lightroom, its good but it does not take the place of Photoshop and I usually finish images from Lightroom processing by importing them into Photoshop. The latter program has become a pain in the posterior, with its 'rental' and other limitations and I am looking for an alternative. I intend to try the ones mentioned in this thread.
I have been a lifelong lover of photography, starting at about nine with a box brownie. Did the lot: twin lens and single lens reflexes, enlarging, film processing, you name it. When digital started up it was laughably bad compared to the film quality obtained from my (then) Olympus and other SLRs but I would not go back to film now, not with the results I get from this Fuji.

I often have the eminently pocketable Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS18 on hand which, for its tiny size, produces excellent images. Its extending lens can pick up fluff, however, and it is a pain to take apart just to remove a tiny speck.

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