your FZ "sweet spot": from FZ28 to FZ1000

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GeraldW Veteran Member • Posts: 8,805
Re: your FZ "sweet spot": from FZ28 to FZ1000

Stuart,

Thanks for asking.  Yes, we are well, just older.   Back in late 2019; we moved from our condominium of 25 years to a retirement community arranged around two large ponds.  Our place is single floor, as are all the others, and backs up on the larger pond.  Plenty of opportunities for photography here as we have resident populations of Mallard ducks and Canada geese, an occasional great blue heron; plus transients of other species, and lots of smaller non-aquatic birds.  It has been a great place to hide out from the pandemic until we could be vaccinated, which happened in February of this year.

Our pond is right around 3 acres, and wide enough that shots of birds on the far side require a long lens.  600 mm is not long enough, so I have added a Panasonic FZ80 which is not as good as I'd like; but the price was good.  I use it in the EX-M mode (9 MP) and that gives enough reach for reasonable size images of the geese and ducks.  However, the settings are not at all like those for the FZ300 and nearly all of the FZ series.

Do you recall the furor over finding the best settings for the FZ200 when they first came out, back in 2012?  Well those same issues exist for my FZ80, and I have finally figured out the rules of the game.

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Jerry

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windmillgolfer
windmillgolfer Forum Pro • Posts: 17,107
Re: your FZ "sweet spot": from FZ28 to FZ1000

Jerry,

Yes, the FZ80/82 is a temptation and I did succumb but didn’t keep it for long. The 20-1200mm zoom range is very attractive but the IQ just isn’t there at the longer end but I still think it is very good value for the occasional super long shot - https://www.flickr.com/photos/dieselgolfer/albums/72157698013761104/with/42899582865/ - bought at refurbished from Panasonic I sold it for very little loss.

I have the Panasonic 100-400mm sat, almost permanently, on my G9. Great for wildlife but a tad heavier.

We’ve visited the US many times, mainly Florida and the NW State parks. You guys certainly know how to organise a retirement community and it is easy to understand why they’re so popular, especially if you’re a golfer. (Despite my nickname I haven’t touched a golf club for over 10 years, since I tried to push my left kneecap through a concrete bollard - not recommended 😉)

Take Care

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Labe Forum Pro • Posts: 12,423
Re: your FZ "sweet spot": from FZ28 to FZ1000
1

windmillgolfer wrote:

Jerry,

Yes, the FZ80/82 is a temptation and I did succumb but didn’t keep it for long. The 20-1200mm zoom range is very attractive but the IQ just isn’t there at the longer end but I still think it is very good value for the occasional super long shot - https://www.flickr.com/photos/dieselgolfer/albums/72157698013761104/with/42899582865/ - bought at refurbished from Panasonic I sold it for very little loss.

I have the Panasonic 100-400mm sat, almost permanently, on my G9. Great for wildlife but a tad heavier.

We’ve visited the US many times, mainly Florida and the NW State parks. You guys certainly know how to organise a retirement community and it is easy to understand why they’re so popular, especially if you’re a golfer. (Despite my nickname I haven’t touched a golf club for over 10 years, since I tried to push my left kneecap through a concrete bollard - not recommended 😉)

Take Care

I do wish Panasonic would take the 82 a little more seriously like Nikon have .

fz330 quality with that focal range would be a best seller for them

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Badrmino
Badrmino Forum Member • Posts: 83
Re: your FZ "sweet spot": from FZ28 to FZ1000

I am a happy new owner of the FZ-200, In fact she arrived this Morning, I took it for some test shots and surprised me, so much that I decided to keep what was supposed to be a gift for a friend 😉, my GF6 will go instead.

Amazing image quality.!! OOC Jpegs. Obviously just tests but I love a close up shot with a blury background any time.

I haven't played with the settings yet, started with an f2.8 and ISO 100.

Badr

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GeraldW Veteran Member • Posts: 8,805
Re: your FZ "sweet spot": from FZ28 to FZ1000

As an owner of 5 FZ200's (not all at once; but over 9 years), I have found three major variations.  The first was in the first 7 or 8 months after the introduction in the summer of 2012, and they are Made in Japan.  The second were the Made in Japan models after early 2013.  And the third variation is the Made in China models.

For the early models, the best settings are to set sharpening to -2, and Noise Reduction to -2, and then set iResolution to +1.  Set color to +2 Amber.  You can also try color at +1 Amber, and +1 Magenta to see which you prefer.  The FZ series have pretty good color; but tend to be a little cool.

For the later Made in Japan models, set Sharpening to +1, NR to -2.  Set color to +2 Amber or +1 Amber, +1 Magenta depending on your taste.

For Made in Japan models, I usually use Exposure Compensation at -0.3.  But that will vary depending on the lighting and the subject.

Made in China models seem to have slightly darker exposures, so I set Sharpening to +1, NR -2, and left Exposure Compensation at 0.  Color settings are like the Japan models.

These settings were all with the cameras set to P, A, or S.  I never tried the automatic settings, and didn't use the M (manual) setting.

And yes, after all these years, I still have a later Made in Japan model.

I don't know how to tell an early from a later Japan model.  But a few shots will tell you.  I'd start with the later Made in Japan settings, set Auto ISO, and take some pictures in relatively low light, so the camera sets itself to ISO 800 or 1600.  Then try the same shots with Sharpening -2, NR -2, and iResolution.  That should tell you very quickly the era the camera is from.

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Jerry

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Badrmino
Badrmino Forum Member • Posts: 83
Re: your FZ "sweet spot": from FZ28 to FZ1000

GeraldW wrote:

As an owner of 5 FZ200's (not all at once; but over 9 years), I have found three major variations. The first was in the first 7 or 8 months after the introduction in the summer of 2012, and they are Made in Japan. The second were the Made in Japan models after early 2013. And the third variation is the Made in China models.

For the early models, the best settings are to set sharpening to -2, and Noise Reduction to -2, and then set iResolution to +1. Set color to +2 Amber. You can also try color at +1 Amber, and +1 Magenta to see which you prefer. The FZ series have pretty good color; but tend to be a little cool.

For the later Made in Japan models, set Sharpening to +1, NR to -2. Set color to +2 Amber or +1 Amber, +1 Magenta depending on your taste.

For Made in Japan models, I usually use Exposure Compensation at -0.3. But that will vary depending on the lighting and the subject.

Made in China models seem to have slightly darker exposures, so I set Sharpening to +1, NR -2, and left Exposure Compensation at 0. Color settings are like the Japan models.

These settings were all with the cameras set to P, A, or S. I never tried the automatic settings, and didn't use the M (manual) setting.

And yes, after all these years, I still have a later Made in Japan model.

I don't know how to tell an early from a later Japan model. But a few shots will tell you. I'd start with the later Made in Japan settings, set Auto ISO, and take some pictures in relatively low light, so the camera sets itself to ISO 800 or 1600. Then try the same shots with Sharpening -2, NR -2, and iResolution. That should tell you very quickly the era the camera is from.

Thanks Jerry, very helpful. Mine is made in Japan, will try these settings

Badr

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OP jf_tea Senior Member • Posts: 1,521
Re: your FZ "sweet spot": from FZ28 to FZ1000

GeraldW wrote:

(...)

For the early models, the best settings are to set sharpening to -2, and Noise Reduction to -2, and then set iResolution to +1. Set color to +2 Amber. You can also try color at +1 Amber, and +1 Magenta to see which you prefer. The FZ series have pretty good color; but tend to be a little cool.

For the later Made in Japan models, set Sharpening to +1, NR to -2. Set color to +2 Amber or +1 Amber, +1 Magenta depending on your taste.

For Made in Japan models, I usually use Exposure Compensation at -0.3. But that will vary depending on the lighting and the subject.

Made in China models seem to have slightly darker exposures, so I set Sharpening to +1, NR -2, and left Exposure Compensation at 0. Color settings are like the Japan models.

These settings were all with the cameras set to P, A, or S. I never tried the automatic settings, and didn't use the M (manual) setting.

And yes, after all these years, I still have a later Made in Japan model.

I don't know how to tell an early from a later Japan model. But a few shots will tell you. I'd start with the later Made in Japan settings, set Auto ISO, and take some pictures in relatively low light, so the camera sets itself to ISO 800 or 1600. Then try the same shots with Sharpening -2, NR -2, and iResolution. That should tell you very quickly the era the camera is from.

Interesting information to know. Thanks.

After getting frustrated with sometimes awful AWB results of in-camera JPEGs, I decided to use RAW.

The one setting which still matters is Exposure Compensation. I usually set it to -0.3 in all my cameras. Sometimes, for specific scenes (e.g. backlit), I need to adjust it to +something.

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-JF

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John McCormack
John McCormack Veteran Member • Posts: 6,638
Re: your FZ "sweet spot": from FZ28 to FZ1000

As others have mentioned I agree that the FZ300/330 is excellent and I've owned the 18, 28, 35 and 150 also.

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"A good photograph is knowing where to stand." - Ansel Adams

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