XZ1 for dance festival or...?
The family is going to the World of Dance show tomorrow in the SF Bay Area and I'm not sure what camera to bring. The choices I have are the XZ1, EPL1 w/14 and 45, or K30 w/18-135. For those not familiar with the event, it's a mix of hip hop, bboy, and street styles of dance so there will be some pretty quick movements throughout.
Perhaps none of the options are really suited for this type of shooting, but what would give me the best chance of catching some of the action?
Assuming that the venue has no restrictions on cameras, I would probably still not take the XZ-1. While it is great in low light and the digital zoom works very well if you are not close, I think that the shutter delay (time between shutter press and the shot being taken) like in most compact cameras would make you miss a lot of shots. You could try by pre-focusing (either using the half-press of the shutter button or manually focusing) and trying to anticipate the movement. Or set the camera for multiple shots and hope for the best. But I think either of the other cameras - again depending on where you are seated AND assuming that the venue has no restrictions on cameras. At lot of theaters (I am assuming this is not an outdoor event) restrict the type of camera you can bring in. I have used the XZ-1 (and now the XZ-2) at concerts, so I know it can perform well, but not sure how it would deal with dancers.
I was curious, so I found some pretty amateurish videos on youtube. Here's one. WOD Video The shooter was too far back, in my opinion. Looks like an open air stage?
It's a matter of getting a good spot that matches your lenses. Your XZ1 at 112 mm is the longest kens you mention. EPL1 and K30 being around 90mm. So take at least two of those camera. Maybe the K30 and the XZ1. Maybe all three because you may need the 45mm on the EPL1 if the stage isn't that bright.
Tough choices here mate,
pentax - very good sensor but slow lens with longer focal length longest battery life
EPl-1 - good sensor very good fast lenses.
XZ-1 - ok sensor very good lens, not the best for action.
If the event is in low light then the EPL-1 would be my choice for sure, but I am a sucker for good glass that is why I have a XZ-1
For getting good dance shots - you need to know the dances and the characteristic movements in them. Watch the dancers for some time before you even touch the camera. If you have no involvement with any form of dance, you are shooting blind, regardless of which camera you use.
As to the camera - can you operate it in your sleep? For dancing, it needs to be the extension of your hand, and definitely not confuse you with dozens of possible settings.
This said, I would use the XZ-1. It is the one least likely to trip you up with technical quandaries.