FZ100 - Africa Safari - disapointing pictures

Started Nov 6, 2010 | Discussions thread
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Jay Rowland
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FZ100 - Africa Safari - disapointing pictures
Nov 6, 2010

I recently bought a FZ100 and went on a 3 week dream safari to Kenya and Tanzania in October 2010. I thought it would be the perfect camera due to the wide angle and 600 mm zoom. I did read about some criticism of the image quality but there were also many supporters of this camera.

I had been waiting months for the GH2 to come out but it wasn't available by the time I left. Regrettably I took a chance and paid the price for my bad decision.

I should mention that I am a very experienced photographer and in the past shot exclusively with Leica R lenses withSL2, R3 and R4 cameras so I know what a good photograph looks like. I know what you are thinking - "He should have know better".

I took 4000 still pictures and about 2 hours of video clips.

On the plus side, the video in 1080 was very good and the handling of the camera was very enjoyable.

The deal breaking negative of this camera is the lack of clear focus on any of the shots! Thus the image quality is terrible in real life shooting conditions. The exposures were OK but I did not get one picture that had the 'wow' factor despite the most amazing photgraphic oportunities of my life. My friend had a Nikon SLR with the 80 - 200 F2.8 zoom and he got great results with excellent clarity.

Many of my pictures had no point of focus anywhere in the shot - even in the wide angles. I tried all sorts of different modes and types of focussing pattern but they all had the same result. I had the camera suported by a Gorillapod for critical long zoom shots. The light levels were high (ISO usually 100) and the exposures were 1/500 or higher. I did not have a computer with me so I was not able to properly judge the camera output until I got home. And when I did I went into a depression of regret.

It is possible the camera is defective but I don't care to find out.

My local Vancouver camera store graciously took it back with a restocking fee. Good riddance.

So the lesson learned is that these bridge cameras tend to go a few bridges too far. I am now waiting for the reviews on the GH2 to come out before I make my next camera decision.

Those considering the FZ100- BEWARE!

 Jay Rowland's gear list:Jay Rowland's gear list
Panasonic Lumix DMC-LF1 Sony RX100 II Nikon D600 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 16-35mm f/4G ED VR Nikon AF-S Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED VR +4 more
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