FZ200 First Impressions

Started Jan 22, 2013 | Discussions thread
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clv100
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FZ200 First Impressions
Jan 22, 2013

I've only owned the camera for 12 hours so all my opinions are very likely to change. Just thought I'd post some initial impressions.

A bit of background, I haven't bought a camera for some eight years, being happy with my 20D and IXUS 860 IS. I bought the FZ200 for the video, I was all set to pick up the V700 camcorder, but when I saw the FZ200 for similar price with similar video capture, I went for the camera instead. I've always been a bit sceptical of the image quality from these feature laden super-zooms but I thought it would be fun to play around with.

Initial impressions, it's light and plasticity, buttons don't have the same positive, heavy feel as my Canons. I even got out my old ~10 year old Canon G3, that also felt to have higher build quality.

The 1080/60p, 720/60p and 720/120fps are excellent, just what I was after.

But the noise in still images is crazy! I just did a side by side comparison against my old 20D, same field of view, both on ISO100, f4.5. (My SLR has the Sigma DC 17-70 f2.8-4.5 Macro). Very roughly speaking I'd say the FZ200 on ISO100 is somewhere around the same as the 20D on ISO400-800.

Is there a way to only engage the image stabilisation on shutter press (like with my IXUS). It's a bit disconcerting to have the FZ200's gyros running all the time the camera's on.

Any recommendations on how to get the cleanest JPEGs from this camera?

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