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Camera for traveling
I'm shortly heading off on a round the world trip, and I still don't have a camera! I have been looking around and one that keeps popping up is the Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ3..

Now, i've read some good reviews and some not so good reviews about the camera, like everything it isn't perfect. Now i've seen the camera in person and felt it wasn't too big and looked great. However my dilemma is, i've seen the new TZ4 & 5 are being released, would it be worth going for one of these? Or stick with the TZ3 considering I can get one for 150pounds and i'll expect the new ones well over 200. So the question I ask, is it worth stretching my budget? (remember i'm going traveling so need as much as I can for it!). Now the reason i've not put this in the panasonic section is I want to ask is there any OTHER makes/models you would recommend?.

If a mod feels it is appropriate I don't mind if this is moved..

Anyway, first post here...hope some of you can help!..

Comments (24)

Tough question. As there are just so many nice cameras to choose from for the travel mission. Agree the Panasonics are very good. Canon A720 IS, Fujifilm Z100fd, and Nikon P60 also look interesting. Partly depends on exactly what feature set you want..

Kelly Cook..

Comment #1

KCook wrote:.

Tough question. As there are just so many nice cameras to choosefrom for the travel mission. Agree the Panasonics are very good.Canon A720 IS, Fujifilm Z100fd, and Nikon P60 also look interesting.Partly depends on exactly what feature set you want..

Kelly Cook.

Problem is I don't have a clue what to look for, what would be the best for me. I'm new to the camera scene and have absolutely no knowledge. All I can see from the Panny is the 10x optical zoom and the 28mm wide lens...

Comment #2

MoSSy88 wrote:All I can see from the Panny is the 10x optical zoom and.

The 28mm wide lens..

These are good starting points. I would add optical image stabilisation as a must (to reduce camera shake), and, ideally, good high ISO performance (if this sounds like doubledutch, check out the Learn/Glossary section on this web site)..

If you're goint to be in places where recharging batteries is difficult, see if you can find a model that accepts standard AA or AAA batteries, alternatively, buy additional batteries for your camera type (third party will do)..

And, finally, do take a tripod, even a small one - there's nothing like a sharp, shake free low light shot you would not have been able to take without a tripod...

Comment #3

I would back off on the 10X zoom requirement. Very long telephoto is good for outdoor sports and wildlife. But otherwise not so useful. For simple sightseeing the "standard" 3X is adequate. 6X plenty for many of us. The difficulty with requiring the 10X is that it will cut out a lot of cameras that are actually excellent for travel..

In camera selection the place I would start is form factor (physical camera size and general design). Some folks want a camera that is as tiny as possible, some want a standard compact size with easy controls, some want an internal lens design with rugged front plate, some will take a little larger compact to get even more controls and features, etc, etc. This is not a minor factor. The camera needs to meet you expectations, and form factor is key there..

Lots and lots to consider. Meanwhile, here is a link to another thread for more ideas -.

Http://forums.dpreview.com/...ms/readflat.asp?forum=1002&message=26823859.

Kelly..

Comment #4

KCook wrote:.

I would back off on the 10X zoom requirement. Very long telephoto isgood for outdoor sports and wildlife. But otherwise not so useful.For simple sightseeing the "standard" 3X is adequate. 6X plenty formany of us. The difficulty with requiring the 10X is that it willcut out a lot of cameras that are actually excellent for travel..

In camera selection the place I would start is form factor (physicalcamera size and general design). Some folks want a camera that is astiny as possible, some want a standard compact size with easycontrols, some want an internal lens design with rugged front plate,some will take a little larger compact to get even more controls andfeatures, etc, etc. This is not a minor factor. The camera needs tomeet you expectations, and form factor is key there..

Lots and lots to consider. Meanwhile, here is a link to anotherthread for more ideas -.

Http://forums.dpreview.com/...ms/readflat.asp?forum=1002&message=26823859.

Kelly.

Thanks for all the replies, 10x isn't a requirement, just something people put in my head as being good and useful. The tZ3 wasn't too big when I seen it in the flesh but I guess something smaller would be good. I do however like the Panasonic designs, but i'll check that link out thanks..

Like I said above I don't know what I should be looking for and what would be best for me. So i'm gonna read the basics and see what is important and what would be good for me. I'm doing a round the world trip for 12months, North America, Fiji/OZ/NZ then SE Asia...

Comment #5

"tZ3 wasn't too big when I seen it in the flesh".

In my view that is very important. To get down to the store and handle these different size cameras for yourself. Obviously the tinest will be easiest to carry. But may lack the performance of a larger design. So the question becomes what is the larger size that you are completely comfortable with? Different folks will answer that differently. There are no rules..

Kelly..

Comment #6

What would recommend, did you see the countries i'm visiting? Something smaller than the TZ3 would be good but I found the TZ3 fine, not too big and reasonable for me to carry with me. If the 10x optical zoom etc isn't needed then it does open up a lot of options, although the TZ3 quality does seem better than a lot of the smaller cameras or is that not true?.

I'm just reading over things just now and seeing what would be best for me, price, size, features. My budget would be along the lines as up 150pounds. Other issue is I leave in 3 weeks, and getting round the shops to see more camera won't be easy, and I live in a small place so not much here but a jessops!.

I'll post back what I find and what other options I find myself, but recommendations from everyone here would be great and give me a starting point!..

Comment #7

As I mentioned in my earlier post, the Canon A720 IS and Nikon P60 are a couple of alternatives to the TZ3. About the same physical size. Both feature a viewfinder. The Canon A720 has proven itself to be very popular. All of these, including Panasonic, have decent performance. You can split hairs about which is best under which circumstances.

Most stores with cameras will have the Canon to show. These more expensive Nikons and Panasonics can be harder to find..

Don't think the country visited has any influence on camera selection. More a matter of what subjects are most important to you..

Kelly..

Comment #8

I picked the fujifilm f40fd. seems like a good walk around and low light camera, and plus there's a 50$ rebate right now. total cost=129$shipped from BeachCamera.~K10D~AF360FGZ~~DA21/3.2~DA70/2.4~FA50/1.4~DA18-55~Tamron70-300~A50/2~M50/1.7~..

Comment #9

Kww_2007 wrote:.

I picked the fujifilm f40fd. seems like a good walk around and lowlight camera, and plus there's a 50$ rebate right now. totalcost=129$shipped from BeachCamera.~K10D~AF360FGZ~~DA21/3.2~DA70/2.4~FA50/1.4~DA18-55~Tamron70-300~A50/2~M50/1.7~.

Problem being I live in the UK! But i'll see what kind of offers there is here..

Kelly i'm going to try look at these in flesh as well. In regards to smaller cameras I have been looking at Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS3 8.1 / Panasonic Lumix DMC-FS20EB 10.1 aswell as the fx35/55 & 100. There seems to be so many different cameras, i'm just going to sit here and read up about all of them and then when I find the ones I like go find them in a shop !..

Comment #10

Hi,.

I can't advise you as to which camera to go for but I travelled around the world going to the same countries/areas but in the reverse direction in 2001-02 before digital really took off. I had a 35mm Canon SLR with a 28-80 zoom and a 70-300 zoom, I met so many other travellers who said "I've got a camera like that, I wish I'd brought it with me but I left it at home because I was worried it would get stolen". So remember your going on a once in a lifetime trip buy the best camera you can afford and don't worry about it, just be sensible about where and when you use it. I also had an expensive pair of binoculars and had no worries in 10 months of travelling..

For me a long lens was important because I'm interested in wildlife, even if your not that interested you may well want to get shots of say monkeys in S.E.A, kangaroos in OZ and maybe whales/dolphins and fur seals in NZ so you might need the 10x magnification. In NZ I saw loads of tourists walking right up to fur seals trying to get a shot with their tiny point and shoots despite all the warning signs about telling you to keep your distance because they bite..

Anyway hope this helps a bit..

Comment #11

Are you going to be 'backpacking'? or will you have suitcases and hotels? If it is the former I suggest the Olympus Stylus ### SW range..

Without music, life would be a mistake. Nietzschehttp://www.flickr.com/photos/audiovore/collections/..

Comment #12

Backpacking, going around the world using suitcases and hotels doesn't appeal to me and just wouldn't feel right. Obviously spending lots of money on a camera isn't the best idea with how i'm doing my trip, but I need a good camera to go away so my photos are decent, although I'm sure that comes down to the user of the camera too !..

Comment #13

Well I think the SW line is a great backpacker cam, Waterproof, shockproof and crushproof..

Without music, life would be a mistake. Nietzschehttp://www.flickr.com/photos/audiovore/collections/..

Comment #14

Im leaning towards the TZ3 still, also thought about the more compact ones like the fx35. I've been looking into all the camera recommended and will let you all know my decision...

Comment #15

MoSSy88 wrote:.

However my dilemma is, i've seen the new TZ4 & 5 are being released,would it be worth going for one of these? Or stick with the TZ3considering I can get one for 150pounds and i'll expect the new oneswell over 200..

The one feature I'm excited about learning more about on the new models is the "intelligent ISO" feature. The TZ models don't allow you to separately control saturation, sharpness, and contrast, and I find that all my TZ1 pictures have more contrast than I care for. I can get good results, but only by setting the camera to "natural" for a saturation level I'm comfortable with, underexposing a bit to preserve highlight detail, then reducing contrast and opening up shadows in post-processing. The Popular Photography hands-on report of the new TZ5 says, "Shadow and highlight detail is good, and we were quite frankly surprised to see toe and shoulder details in some shots we thought would suffer from serious cases of blowout and blockup." For me anyway, the TZ5 sounds like it could be a good upgrade while the TZ3's sample images and reviews (dpreview calls it's tonal curve "unforgiving") didn't make it sound compelling...

Comment #16

Moss....

Just my opinon. A travel camera should be small, light, and have image stabilization and sufficient zoom range. AA batteries are only a good idea if you plan to camp out in the woods. If you have access to an electrical outlet the rechargable Lithium Ion batteries will work much better..

I really like the TZ3/4/5 cameras but I also agree that 10X might be overkill. And while it is small, I would prefer even smaller. Plus I'd much rather settle for a 4X zoom with a wide lense, the wider the better, since I would do a lot of shooting in close quarters. Indoors, museums, crowded streets, etc..

I also am not crazy about carrying very expensive cameras while travelling. They are too easy to lose, get stolen, or be dropped. Unless you are a working pro, you really shouldn't be hauling around a DSLR plus lenses and flash units. I will admit, these will make better images, but the whole idea of "travel camera" is defeated by lugging around a large bag of gear..

This means I would be very interested in the Panasonic FX35 with it's 25mm f/2.8 lens, 4X zoom capability, and optical image stabilization..

Unfortunately this camera is a very recent release, and prices will probably be pretty high right now..

The Fuji 50fd looks interesting too..

Good luck on whatever you decide...Martyhttp://flickr.com/photos/7735239@N02/Panasonic FZ7, FZ20, FZ30, LX2.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window..

Comment #17

Before shelling out the $$ for a Pany FX35 I would also take a hard look at the new Nikon S600. No manual controls, but otherwise a sweet camera design..

Kelly Cook..

Comment #18

KCook wrote:.

Before shelling out the $$ for a Pany FX35 I would also take a hardlook at the new Nikon S600. No manual controls, but otherwise asweet camera design..

Kelly.... the S600 looks like a nice camera, but I really can't find any price advantage for it over the Panasonic FX35. Both cameras are brand new, and both are selling for around $299..

In fact, even their specs are pretty similar. The Panasonic is wider and has a faster shutter speed, but the Nikon seems to have a slightly faster lens..

Http://www.dpreview.com/...eras=nikon_cps600%2Cpanasonic_dmcfx35&show=all.

Both have 4X zooms and image stabilization.Martyhttp://flickr.com/photos/7735239@N02/Panasonic FZ7, FZ20, FZ30, LX2.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window..

Comment #19

Just read a user on here has had a bad experience with the FX35 and he was disappointed with the picture quality.."grainy"..

2weeks tomorrow I leave so I better hurry up and choose, although I may leave it until I get over to Canada to buy the camera as it may well work out cheaper!..

Comment #20

I keep going back to the idea of the TZ3, I can get very cheap and it comes packed with some good features. Size isn't the smallest, but looking at the FX35 reviews don't seem to be great in regards to the quality. I've looked at the FS range but this is more of the budget range?.

Another camera thats popped up has been the Ricoh R7, not too bad. Not the main feature needed for my camera but I want it to look nice, the Pannies look great to me, the Ricoh isn't bad but a lot of the Fuji/Canon etc are so ugly!.

I'm no closer to choosing a camera and I may wait until I arrive in Canada to buy it now as I'm running out of time and it may save me some cash!..

Comment #21

Looks like you have already made your decision. The Panasonic seems to be very appealing to you...maybe you are wanting someone to say that's the right one and go buy it?.

Not taking the mikey either...I'm exactly the same...can't make my mind up once I have looked around and just wish someone would just point to one and say that's the one you'll need...it'll be perfect.Anyone willing to do that here????? And then do the same for me?..

Comment #22

The review of the TZ5 I read suggests it's a little better than the TZ3 in terms of noise reduction problems ( "the Panasonic problem" as I call it ). It's very hard to argue with that zoom range if that's what you want..

I think most of the compacts now available are quite good, but I lean towards the Fuji F50 and the Canon A720 IS myself. The F50 has better noise performance and is smaller, although the Canon uses AAs and is quite good and is hardly huge. The A720's zoom range is OK, although not very wide, so if you need wide I'd suggest you consider an SD870 although it's debatable if that's better than the TZ5..

I personally have the slightly older A710 IS and I use it with a Joby Gorillapod, which I strongly suggest you consider as a light, flexible travel tripod for a small compact. Any camera I mention here can use one..

You need to know two things :.

(1) For social occasions use the flash - forget this high ISO nonsense. I have an F30 and I still use the flash on it..

(2) Use the tripod to take shots of things like interiors of churches, museums, nighttime shots of cities, landscapes etc. - static scenes. Don't rely on IS. Using the tripod lets you keep ISO to the lowest setting which reduces noise and gives better images. Use the camera's timer to shoot - don't handle it..

I speak as one who went through the painful learning curve to give you this..

In the unlikely event you want to try RAW you can get RAW on some Canon Powershots using the CHDK hack - google this. I mention it just in case..

StephenG.

Pentax K100DFuji S5200Fuji E900PCLinuxOS..

Comment #23

Well i've been looking at the Canon sd870 and it looks great, and from what i've seen can produce some decent pictures. I'm stuck between this, TZ3/5 and the FX35 just now. I was very interested in the FX35 but it does seem to have some issues with the picture quality, but still a very good camera. I leave in one week tomorrow so will be ordering this week and i've been trying to get a look at the new pannies in the flesh but no luck here..

As said before I may just end up going for the TZ3 due to such a low price right now. The canon and fx35 being around the same price then the TZ5 which I would say will be too much for me to spend even though I would like to...

Comment #24

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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