Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ200 Review

4.5
October 11, 2012 | Mark Goldstein |

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#101 Esther

Dear all,
I am a mom wanting to take high quality SHARP pictures of my very ACTIVE little boy (3 years old) and everyday family pictures (both indoors and outdoors). I am the typical point and shoot camera user (never used anything other than a point and shoot pocket camera). I am willing to take the leap to a more sophisticated camera with the luxury of being able to rely on automatic settings when there is little time to adjust everything (especially the case with the little guy) . I am of course wiling to learn how to use my camera’s manual settings and play with it for the best result. However, I want to be able to rely on the automatic settings for say 90% of the time and have good results (sharp pictures) whilst having the opportunity to improve the results even more through time. I was hoping this would be the perfect camera for my situation. However, after reading Richard Hannan’s feedback on post #38 (and some other similar remarks), I am seriously wondering if I made the wrong conclusion:

Here is a snippet of the feedback:
This is not a camera for the casual amateur. It is for an amateur that seriously wants to learn good techniques, a serious amateur or as a professional back up camera.

Thanks in advance for your time and feedback,
Esther

10:37 pm - Tuesday, January 8, 2013

#102 Point and shoot Mom

Dear all,
I am a mom wanting to take high quality SHARP pictures of my very ACTIVE little boy (3 years old) and everyday family pictures (both indoors and outdoors). I am the typical point and shoot camera user (never used anything other than a point and shoot pocket camera). I am willing to take the leap to a more sophisticated camera with the luxury of being able to rely on automatic settings when there is little time to adjust everything (especially the case with the little guy) . I am of course wiling to learn how to use my camera’s manual settings and play with it for the best result. However, I want to be able to rely on the automatic settings for say 90% of the time and have good results (sharp pictures) whilst having the opportunity to improve the results even more through time. I was hoping this would be the perfect camera for my situation. However, after reading Richard Hannan’s feedback on post #38 (and some other similar remarks), I am seriously wondering if I made the wrong conclusion:

Here is a snippet of the feedback:
This is not a camera for the casual amateur. It is for an amateur that seriously wants to learn good techniques, a serious amateur or as a professional back up camera.

Thanks in advance for your time and feedback!

10:42 pm - Tuesday, January 8, 2013

#103 Point and shoot Mom

I am your typical point and shoot camera user willing to expand my horizons in order to take SHARP high quality photos for personal use. I have a very ACTIVE little 3 year old and looking for a camera to help me take great pictures of the family (both indoor and outdoor).  Until now I have only owned pocket cameras (current one an outdated Cannon Powershot SD 790 IS, so in an entirely different league of cameras).
I am looking for a reasonably sized and priced camera which can take clear and sharp pictures of the little one while active (both close up and far away) with good light and no red eye. I am certainly wiling to follow up on the suggestions posted thus far (especially post #70) in order to learn more about how to adjust the different settings/ functions of the camera so that I can improve my picture taking skills and take advantage of the options provided in these higher range cameras.
However, since my partner has made it clear he is not going to use anything other than the automatic setting options, I want to have the luxury of relying on the automatic settings for good quality pictures say 90% of the time.  In the meantime, I can learn more about the camera and play with it whilst he solely uses the point and shoot settings. I was hoping this would be the perfect camera for this. However, I am no longer sure in light of post # 7 and similar remarks:
This is not a camera for the casual amateur. It is for an amateur that seriously wants to learn good techniques, a serious amateur or as a professional back up camera.
This is my first time posting on such a site so my apologies if I provide too much/ or irrelevant information.
Thanks in advance for your feedback.

11:27 pm - Tuesday, January 8, 2013

#104 Esther & Point and shoot mom

SORRY for the overkill, I lost my original message, received two delivery errors and started all over again. The posts from Esther and Point and shoot mom are from the sam person, me.
Thanks for your understanding and looking forward to feedback.

11:31 pm - Tuesday, January 8, 2013

#105 Esther & Point and shoot mom

My apologies, I have been having several problems posting on this blog. As you can probably ascertain: Esther and Point and shoot mom are the same person. I received delivery errors and then eventually rewrote my message as a last ditch attempt just to find that my original message was posted twice.

11:53 pm - Tuesday, January 8, 2013

#106 Richard Hannam

Hello Esther
All I was trying to say was, don’t waste your money if you’re not really serious about learning to use this camera. In some respects, it’s more complex than the SLR cameras I use for my pro work.
So, if you’re not prepared to learn how to use it, you may as well just buy a decent point & shoot if you’re just going to use it in fully automatic mode.
Is it capable of doing the job you want? Yes it is. As an example, here are a few shots I took recently in an effort to really push the FZ200’s limits by photographing my watch in a variety of very challenging environments as if I was doing an advertising shoot:
https://picasaweb.google.com/103464086508170700630/FZ200
The complicated watch face is difficult enough on its own but even more so in the backgrounds I set. My SLR kit, which costs 6 times the FZ200, would struggle to do much better!
Finally, to help you even more, take a look at some of FZ200 expert, Graham Houghton’s excellent instructional videos here:
https://www.youtube.com/user/ghough12/videos?sort=dd&view=0&flow=list
If you have any more questions, by all means contact me again.

1:39 am - Wednesday, January 9, 2013

#107 JOE PRETE

Point & Shoot Mom,
I can’t say I disagree with the advice you’ve been given. This is a great camera, but you need to study to make use of all of it’s features, in fact learning it is a job in itself.  I’m sure that any camera shop would love to reel you in. The more the camera costs, the more money they will make. But in the same list price
range there is a much better option. I say “List Price” because it’s been known to go on sale for $80.00-$100.00 Less.
I’m referring to the Canon SX50 HS And from what you describe, it sounds like it was built for you. The Ai is amazing, it features a mode called “Zoom Framing Assist and Lock” and what it does is, Brackets lock onto the subject and keep him in focus as he moves around, the Brackets Follow, keeping him in focus. The High speed burst is 10 frames with continuos focusing. It also has a “Facial Recognition” feature that lets you enter their name in the camera, and when one is in the viewfinder their name pops up! The Record button is placed right next to where your thumb rests and it’s very easy to go right into video mode. It has 1080p FULL HD Video and Zoom while Recording.

Another nice feature is, the Mode that you are in can be read with Tele-Prompter like words at the bottom of the screen. Whether it’s directions, suggestions or a reminder of what mode you are using, it’s all printed at the bottom of the screen. It can be left on if you need it, or switched off if you don’t. It’s letting you learn as you are using the camera.
The six way Optical Image Stabilization gives you steady, sharp pictures whatever the conditions are. The Auto intelligence system picks from 58 Pre-Defined shooting situations and the best mode settings are automatically set for you. The Auto Focus is lightning fast, and you can use the Eye Level Viewfinder or the
2.8” inch LCD. It has a 12 Megapixel CMOS Sensor and the Digc 5 Image Processor. Oh, by the way, this is also a 50X Zoom that is now the longest of an integrated lens Camera in the industry. It’s a 24-1200MM (Surpassing the Canon SX40 HS)

This camera is reviewed on this site, just choose it from the “Camera Reviews” or type the name into the search and click on review. You might see some of my comments there! I would also go to Canon’s web site and choose Cameras>compact>SX50 HS It’s easy and very informative. You can call them with any questions, but look for the sales and you will find it soon. As you might guess, I own one of these and their G1 X along with my Pro Nikon DSLR’s and SLR’s
Happy Shooting,
... Joe Prete

2:27 am - Wednesday, January 9, 2013

#108 JOE PRETE

Point & Shoot Mom,
I would look at the Canon SX50 HS. From what you describe, it sounds like it was built for you. The Ai is amazing, it features a mode called “Zoom Framing Assist and Lock” and what it does is, Brackets lock onto the subject and keep him in focus as he moves around, the Brackets Follow, keeping him in focus. The High speed burst is 10 frames with continuos focusing. It also has a “Facial Recognition” feature that lets you enter their name in the camera, and when one is in the viewfinder their name pops up! The Record button is placed right next to where your thumb rests and it’s very easy to go right into video mode. It has 1080p FULL HD Video and Zoom while Recording.
Another nice feature is, the Mode that you are in can be read with Tele-Prompter like words at the bottom of the screen. Whether it’s directions, suggestions or a reminder of what mode you are using, it’s all printed at the bottom of the screen. It can be left on if you need it, or switched off if you don’t. It’s letting you learn as you are using the camera.
The six way Optical Image Stabilization gives you steady, sharp pictures whatever the conditions are. The Auto intelligence system picks from 58 Pre-Defined shooting situations and the best mode settings are automatically set for you. The Auto Focus is lightning fast, and you can use the Eye Level Viewfinder or the
2.8” inch LCD. It has a 12 Megapixel CMOS Sensor and the Digc 5 Image Processor. Oh, by the way, this is also a 50X Zoom that is now the longest of an integrated lens Camera in the industry. It’s a 24-1200MM (Surpassing the Canon SX40 HS)
This camera is reviewed on this site, just choose it from the “Camera Reviews” or type the name into the search and click on review. You might see some of my comments there! I would also go to Canon’s web site and choose Cameras>compact>SX50 HS It’s easy and very informative. You can call them with any questions, but look for the sales and you will find it soon. As you might guess, I own one of these and their G1 X along with my Pro Nikon DSLR’s and SLR’s
... Joe Prete

2:34 am - Wednesday, January 9, 2013

#109 JOE PRETE

Esther,
I would look at the Canon SX50 HS. From what you describe, it sounds like it was built for you. The Ai is amazing, it features a mode called “Zoom Framing Assist and Lock” and what it does is, Brackets lock onto the subject and keep him in focus as he moves around, the Brackets Follow, keeping him in focus. The High speed burst is 10 frames with continuos focusing. It also has a “Facial Recognition” feature that lets you enter their name in the camera, and when one is in the viewfinder their name pops up! The Record button is placed right next to where your thumb rests and it’s very easy to go right into video mode. It has 1080p FULL HD Video and Zoom while Recording.
Another nice feature is, the Mode that you are in can be read with Tele-Prompter like words at the bottom of the screen. Whether it’s directions, suggestions or a reminder of what mode you are using, it’s all printed at the bottom of the screen. It can be left on if you need it, or switched off if you don’t. It’s letting you learn as you are using the camera.
The six way Optical Image Stabilization gives you steady, sharp pictures whatever the conditions are. The Auto intelligence system picks from 58 Pre-Defined shooting situations and the best mode settings are automatically set for you. The Auto Focus is lightning fast, and you can use the Eye Level Viewfinder or the
2.8” inch LCD. It has a 12 Megapixel CMOS Sensor and the Digc 5 Image Processor. Oh, by the way, this is also a 50X Zoom that is now the longest of an integrated lens Camera in the industry. It’s a 24-1200MM (Surpassing the Canon SX40 HS)
This camera is reviewed on this site, just choose it from the “Camera Reviews” or type the name into the search and click on review. You might see some of my comments there! I would also go to Canon’s web site and choose Cameras>compact>SX50 HS It’s easy and very informative. You can call them with any questions, but look for the sales and you will find it soon. As you might guess, I own one of these and their G1 X along with my Pro Nikon DSLR’s and SLR’s
... Joe Prete

2:50 am - Wednesday, January 9, 2013

#110 Joe Prete

Hi Esther,
Richard is right, the FZ200 camera can be difficult to master.
It sounds like the camera for you is the Canon SX50 HS It is a camera that you can actually learn from. It has many features like “Zoom Framing Assist & Lock” the brackets lock onto a moving subject and continue to focus until you get your shot or shots.
The High Speed Burst is 10 Frames with continuos focusing. It has a Facial recognition mode, you just enter the name and it identifies your subject, the record button is at your thumb and you can also Zoom while recording. The Zoom is silent. The Video is Full HD 1080p Your actions can be read at the bottom of the screen with Tele-Prompter like Quality, it can give directions, suggestions or just remind you of what mode you are in, or be turned off if you don’t need it. It’s teaching you every mode that you are using. It has 6 way Optical Image Stabilization. The Ai system has 58 Pre-Defined Shooting situations and it picks the best suited mode. The AutoFocus is lightning fast. It has an Eye Level Viewfinder and a 2.8” LCD. A 12 MegaPixel CMOS Sensor and a DIGIC 5 Image Processor. I can really go on and on, The Zoom Lens is the largest integrated lens in the industry now, it’s 50X OPTICAL ZOOM is 24-1200MM (Surpassing the Canon SX40 HS) The Ai is simply amazing! No I don’t work for Canon, actually I’m a Nikon Shooter, but for compacts I’m using The Canon G1 X and the SX50 HS The HS is for High Sensitivity. This camera is about the same list price as the FZ200 but it frequently goes on sale for $80.00-$100.00 off.  There is a review on this site, but I think you should also go to Canon’s own web site. Remember their price is not what we pay. This is one of the most advanced cameras on the market. The reason for the sale prices, it’s too close in price to Canon’s entry level DSLR’s (We got lucky!!)
Happy Shooting,
... Joe Prete

3:33 am - Wednesday, January 9, 2013

#111 JOE PRETE

Esther,
There has been a lot of trouble with the site today, if you enter a post and don’t get a denial screen, it may go through. It could take from two minute to two hours. Yes it is very annoying, especially with a long and detailed post. It is better to wait and see. If it doesn’t show in two hours, it probably wont. I’m not sure how you wound up on this page unless you did a specific search.

I just wanted to say that many people are at a standstill with this camera, it’s a lot to learn. it is just too deep for most people that just want to take good pictures. I do feel very strongly about the SX50 HS. It’s not very often that I am so amazed with a camera, that I really don’t need, but I yet I have to have it. I’m not sure where you’re from, but if you need any more help, just let me know. When I bought mine, I got it for $383.00 The very next sale, it was down to $350.00 As for the long zoom lens, if you don’t need it, don’t use it. It just comes with the package, but if you don’t Zoom out far, it will be the same size as it’s competitors. You’re not really paying extra for that. If you need any more help, just ask. I’ll be around.
Best Regards,
... Joe Prete

4:29 am - Wednesday, January 9, 2013

#112 Fabio

To Point and shoot mom
  All bridge cameras have compact sisters that sometimes share the same sensor and processor, so basically bridge cameras may look like a “professional camera” but they have the heart and soul of point and shoot cameras.
  Why carry such a big camera if you can use a pocket camera that will deliver the same results most of the time?
    You need a camera with fast focus, easy to operate, long zoom, no red eyes, good movies . I strongly suggest the Panasonic TZ30 or ZS20, they are the same camera.
    It fits in a pocket, has 500 mm max zoom (the FZ200 is 600mm max,) the flash is fixed in the body, no red eyes, movies are great, automatic mode works very well and maybe the most important thing for your husband , the touchscreen. You can operate it like a cell phone, touch the screen and you set the focus point and if you wish it takes the picture too. Burst modes are great.
  It also has all controls that you find in professional cameras, meaning that if you learn how to make use of aperture, speed and ISO, the controls are there.
    Another important point is that you can operate it with just one hand, get the camera, press the on button and it’s ready to take pictures, no lens cap to worry about, turn it off and throw it in your pocket or bag. 
    It costs less than half the price of the FZ200. I had the TZ30/SZ20 and liked it very much. I spent 3 days with a FZ200 and after testing it with other bridge cameras I’m sure it’s not the eight wonder of the world,  go for the compact and you won’t miss the big one, in fact I bet you will take much more pictures and movies with the small one.

10:01 am - Wednesday, January 9, 2013

#113 esther & Point and shoot mom

Dear Richard, Joe and Fabio,
Thank you very much for the feedback and especially for your understanding about the multiple postings.
Richard, the pictures you took look of your watch look great and the tutorials are perfect for a beginner like myself: not too fast, nice visuals and very well presented. However, after discussion with my husband we have decided that we will opt for a decent point and shoot camera in automatic mode (and extra options so that I can learn how to improve my picture taking). I realize the rewards derived from the FZ200 will make up for the time invested, I must admit that I am not up for the challenge at this time.
Pete and Fabio, the Canon Powershot SX50 HS and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS20 are great suggestions and I am trying to decide between the two. I like the options on Canon and and the compact size/ price of the Panasonic. I am reading the reviews (which is how I came across this blog) and will be sure to revert back to you both when we make our choice.
Thanks again to you all for making my first blog experience so positive. Best regards, Esther

9:08 pm - Friday, January 11, 2013

#114 Richard Hannam

Hello Esther
The pleasure was as much ours as yours. I’m glad we were able to assist in our own different ways.
From what you say, I think your choice is about right. You may find that the ZS20 focuses faster than the Canon. Worth checking.
Another alternative would be to get a used version of one of the earlier Panasonic models. I shot my first professional shots with an FZ28. A couple of years ago this was a $300 camera but now less than half that now. Not unsimilar to the FZ200 but at a quarter of the cost & the opportunity to progress your knowledge & technique in the future.
As always with any technology, it’s much better to buy one model behind the latest one every year or so!
Best wishes, Richard

11:48 pm - Friday, January 11, 2013

#115 John Wewege

Have a look at the (reputable) reviews on the internet and you will find that the Panasonic FZ200 is the best bridge camera currently available.
It is by no means perfect, but incorporating everything that is suggested in the comments below, will increase the price drastically.You cannot compare the FZ200 with a DSLR or a “prosumer” compact with a larger sensor such as the G15. Its like comparing apples with pears!
Show me a camera with a 1/2.3” sensor and at least a 600mm reach that performs better and have better specs/features. The FZ200 must be the best bridge camera for action photography (sports and wildlife)

7:40 am - Friday, January 18, 2013

#116 H. MONETTI

John,
As long as you keep the ISO low, it’s fine!

10:12 am - Friday, January 18, 2013

#117 H. MONETTI

And btw,
For the record, the Best is the Fujifilm X-S1
Hank

8:35 pm - Friday, January 18, 2013

#118 Jozsa

Can someone tell me what is the difference between the electronic zoom and mechanical zoom? What are their advantages and disadvantages for stills and video? I would like to buy this camera, but I have on my list another camera, the Fujifilm X-S1. Would I miss the mechanical zoom if I would choose the FZ200? Answer will be apreciated.

9:27 am - Saturday, January 19, 2013

#119 Joe Prete

Jozsa,
Electronic Zoom, much better known as “Power Zoom” Works by way of a “rocker switch” and an electric motor.

Mechanical Zoom, much better known as “Manual Zoom” works by you turning or pushing/pulling part of the lens barrel.

In the past, people chose a Manual zoom, because the noise of the power zoom motor was heard during a Movie recording and/or because it drained the battery power faster.

Both of the problems have gone away, on this and other High end cameras, The FZ200 and Canon’s SX50 HS motors are near silent, and the noise is not heard during recording. Also, advancements in motor design have resulted in motors that do not drain power nearly as much. I can’t say for lower end cameras, because my work has been with top of the line Digital SuperZoom cameras. So why now, would one choose one over the other, in the case of the Fujifilm X-S1, it is built as a DSLR replacement for those not wanting to carry and change lenses, and DSLR Cameras do not have Power Zoom lenses. So, for those customers, they would probably expect a “Manual Zoom” lens.
... Joe Prete

11:03 am - Saturday, January 19, 2013

#120 Joe Prete

Jozsa,  Part 1
Electronic Zoom, much better known as “Power Zoom” Works by way of a “rocker switch” and an electric motor.

Mechanical Zoom, much better known as “Manual Zoom” works by you turning or pushing/pulling part of the lens barrel.

In the past, people chose a Manual zoom, because the noise of the power zoom motor was heard during a Movie recording and/or because it drained the battery power faster.
Both of the problems have gone away, on this and other High end cameras, The FZ200 and Canon’s SX50 HS motors are near silent, and the noise is not heard during recording. Also, advancements in motor design have resulted in motors that do not drain power nearly as much. 
... Joe Prete

11:08 am - Saturday, January 19, 2013

#121 Joe Prete

Jozsa Part 2
I can’t say for lower priced cameras, because my work has been with top of the line Digital Super Zoom cameras. So why would Fujifilm put a Manual Zoom lens in the X-S1 camera.
The X-S1 is built as a DSLR replacement for those that don’t want to carry and change lenses, and Since DSLR’s do not have “Power Zoom” lenses, people that buy it would never really expect it to have it. I think that it also, would have made a very expensive camera, even more expensive. That was a very good Question, even though our Spam filter didn’t think so. I would be happy to discus the choice further with you if you want. My email is on the Nikon L810 Review Comments at number 102 I think. There are a few other things that you should know for such a large one time investment.
... Joe Prete

11:25 am - Saturday, January 19, 2013

#122 Randy Swain

Trying to choose either Nikon D3100, D5100 or Canon SX50 or Panasonic FZ200.  I have very little experience with Digital point and shoot cameras, the last one was the Canon A590IS which went bad on me a few years ago and took very good photo’s.  I am a novice, I really have a desire to have a good excellent camera for video taping my daughters at home, indoors, school and outdoors, and of course indoor photo’s.  I would like to have one that I can grow with, use for nature/wildlife, scenic photo’s, close-ups and just everyday photography.  I would like to have the option if I wanted to enlarge a photo to 16 x 19 or so that I would have the option to do so with good results, my first choice was the Panasonic FZ200 but I was told that I should go with the D3100 or D5100 for the sensor size and they produce excellent low light video and photo quality.  I even thought about trying out the Canon SX50 since I work at Walmart and can get it for 10% off, or I could try the Nikon D3100 or D5100 with the same discount.  I know that the Nikons come with the 18-55 VR lens and that is O.K., for me it is if I get the Canon or Panasonic if I will regret it and wish I would have gotten the Nikon’s.  I realize know one can make the decision for me, I just need some good hard and sincere imput to try to influence me :). Hopefully one day I will have the opportunity to take some photo classes in college and getting into photography more but I’m sure that will if ever come later.  Thanks!

6:49 am - Monday, January 28, 2013

#123 Richard Hannam

To: Randy Swain #122
My suggestion would be to invest in some classes first. Then you will have the basic knowledge to make your own choice of equipment rather than be confused by the widely varying opinions of other folks which will only confuse you further.
The money you save by buying the right equipment will more than pay for your lessons!!

11:07 am - Monday, January 28, 2013

#124 hash50

I have a Lumix FZ-20 from 2005 which was the last Lumix with the great Leica constant f2.8 aperture 12x lens, and the pixel count was 5MP. I am very happy with the quality of the pictures (mainly due to the lens I suppose) I have taken with it. I was hoping Panasonic would come back with a constant f2.8 lens with a larger sensor and a smaller zoom, rather than the same sensor and twice the zoom. I doubt if the FZ-200 gives any better photos since they have packed 12MP in the same sensor size. I believe the low light performance of FZ-20 would be better (bigger pixels in 5MP) than FZ-200 although the resolution is slightly better(about 50% more pixels in each dimension) in the FZ-200.

1:05 pm - Monday, February 11, 2013

#125 Prakash Wadhwani

I have a Nikon D-90 with an 18-200 lens and consider myself a power-user. I’m a DJ & need to carry my camera to my gigs to shoot some stills in the extremely low-light / highly colored lighting + videos of people dancing & enjoying themselves within the above-mentioned lighting parameters.

My SLR (D-90) seems a little bulky to carry around & as such I’m looking for a super-zoom to fill the slot. I need stills taken (mostly without flash) to capture the heavily colored/tinted lighting projected by the array of DJ lights + videos of the same too.

I’ve been considering between the SX-50 & FZ-200 and since the 1200 reach is not that important for me I was sorta inclined towards the FZ-200 due to the f2.8 right throughout the focal length.

Q1) I’m a little wary as I’ve read the Panny is a little more noisy than the Canon.

Q2) Should I be considering any Fuji’s eg. FinePix SL1000 or HS30EXR or FinePix HS50EXR ?

Please note that of crucial importance to me is “pristine” picture quality with as less noise as possible as a lot of my shooting would be in the dark. Equally important is having great video. I’m also looking for a camera having a zoom of at least 25x & above.

I’d really appreciate some input from all you gurus here.

Rgds,
Prakash.

10:07 pm - Saturday, March 2, 2013

#126 Richard Hannam

To Prakash in reply to #125
In a nutshell, no superzoom will satisfy the requirements you have specified.
Only a DSLR or compact camera like the NEX 7 will do that.
You also seem to contradict yourself as you said, “...he 1200 reach is not that important…” but then said,”...I’m also looking for a camera having a zoom of at least 25x & above.”
Regards, Richard

10:50 pm - Saturday, March 2, 2013

#127 Prakash Wadhwani

Hi Richard ... Thx for your feedback. I don’t think I’ve contradicted myself. I’ve stated my main usage for the camera ... and also a minimum zoom requirement so that it satisfies some outdoor shooting on days when I don’t wanna carry my SLR around. Sort of a 1-stop-shop with a compromise on quality as compared to my DSLR.

If the zoom wasn’t so important I’d probably be going with a Canon G15 or something similar.

What I’d like is ... given the above parameters of my requirements, which of the cameras requested would come closest to satisfying them?

Thx for taking the time to answer.

Rgds,
Prakash.

12:57 am - Sunday, March 3, 2013

#128 Andy

How viable/practical is it to buy and attach a 1.7x magnification filter to the end of the FZ200’s lens, thus extending the Optical Zoom limit from 600mm to 1020mm, which would then compete with the Canon SX50HS (1200m) and the new Fujifilm HS50EXR (1000mm)?
Would this affect image quality or zoom-abilty of the lens- or just cost too much?

11:27 pm - Thursday, March 7, 2013

#129 Richard Hannam

In reply to Andy #128
As always, when you add to a lens, no matter how good the base lens & camera are, there will be some degradation in quality. Adding an extender to the FZ200 is reported to provide an acceptable result.

However, don’t forget that the FZ200’s 600mm zoom can be ‘pushed’ to 1200mm anyway. I’ve tried it & was surprised at the quality.

It all depends on how much quality you need with either method. I use a 1.5x extender on my Canon L class lenses. Even at this level of lens quality & dedicated extender , there is a noticeable albeit slight drop in quality.

11:46 pm - Thursday, March 7, 2013

#130 David

I cannot get my new Panasonic Lumix FZ200 to display on a UK Sony PAL TV by HDMI cable?
How do I tell if the camera is just for NTSC playback? I set it for PAL output.
Is the camera only designed for playback on a Panasonic TV?
What are the correct camera settings?
Thanks, David

11:33 am - Thursday, March 14, 2013

#131 Richard Hannam

In reply to David #130
The FZ200 displays quite happily on both PAL & NTSC so I guess you’re doing something wrong.
A lot of problems are caused by incompatible cables.
However, your best bet is to contact Panasonic. Their customer support is always excellent in my experience.

5:52 pm - Thursday, March 14, 2013

#132 JIM SMITH

I JUST PURCHASED APANASONIC FZ200 CAMERA AND I CANNOT FIND OUT HOW TO CANCEL THE DATE STAMP FEATURE SO IT IS OFF ALL THE TIME.I CANNOT CROP PICS MADE IN THE IA MODE DUE TO DATE STAMPING.I WANY TO TURN IT OFF.CAN SOMEONE HELP ME—-JOE PRETE OR ANYONE?THANKS.

3:16 am - Thursday, March 28, 2013

#133 Mary Rogers

Question: I’m fairly new to photography so forgive my ignorance/stupidity.  I notice that in Manual mode the FZ200 does not allow exposure compensation to be changed.  Even if I increase or decrease the exposure in say, P mode, then go back to M mode the exposure in this mode is not changed (it’s still set on 0). Any reason for this?

9:33 am - Thursday, March 28, 2013

#134 JOE PRETE

To Mary Rogers,
1)You should know that this is the very worst Camera choice for a beginner. The setting you seek is only found in Program, Aperture or Shutter Priority. It (might) be added by using one of your custom settings, but Panasonic isn’t very clear about that.

Reading from page 79, they call it “compensating the exposure”. Not a “Photographic” term. We call it “Exposure Compensation”. and it’s usually found in every mode on all other cameras. Panasonic makes everything from Auto radios to Vacuum cleaners, so it must be hard for them to relate.

2)Aside from building a high priced, difficult camera, they failed to hire an experienced writer for their owners guide. You just got the camera and like the YELLER before you,  you also found problems at the most basic of settings. I warn you, their Tech support knows about as much as you do about this Camera.

It seems, they did only one thing right. That is, license the use of Leica’s Lens formulas. My first warning, buy a camera you can pick up and use, I just spent a few months helping someone who didn’t have an option for tech support in India. Richard tried to help him too. He is a well educated Adult & Parent, so the problem can not be blamed on him. He just made the wrong choice. Now I warn you, there will be comments disputing everything here, you see they are investors, i.o.w.,They drank too much of Panasonic’s cool-aid so their only release is to drag others into the fire with them, so they boast about the camera. 

So I urge you to -
3)Return it while you can and buy a Canon, Nikon Fuji, Pentax Olympus or even Sony. Otherwise you will have an ulcer long before you master this camera. As good as they claim it is, it’s really very different from the rest of the world!  While I always recommend reading the full guide, you will have nothing but problems with this camera. I’m doing this over 40 years now, and I can use any other camera without even using the basic guide.
If you keep it, you will spend so much time reading that you won’t have time to use it.  I say to the people who will write in Panasonic’s defense, why didn’t you answer this woman’s question?  You should kindly ask Richard Hannam as a second opinion and then get something that’s much more “User Friendly” Before you spend all your days watching Graham Houghton’s
you tube videos.
Good Luck Mary Rogers,
... Joe Prete

11:38 pm - Thursday, March 28, 2013

#135 Joe Prete

To Mary Rogers,
I’ve replied to your question, but due to problems with the Moderator/Spam filter it’s not getting through. When this happens, we tend to trim them down a bit. Yesterday 6 variations printed on the L810 comments. If you want to email me I can Help you. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) You can send it anytime and I will respond same day. Unless you want to wait here. I assume Richard Had the same problem, He always tries to help. Whatever works for you.
Regards,
... Joe Prete

12:37 am - Friday, March 29, 2013

#136 Alex

I bought a camera in Japan. Unfortunately, there is no function in the menu to change the language to English.The Representative of Panasonic CanadaI told me that it was impossible to do. Maybe someone knows how to reinstall the program

5:59 pm - Tuesday, May 21, 2013

#137 Phil

I am running around in a circle between the P510, the FZ200 and the SX50.  Please help!

I will almost always be shooting outdoors and in good light.  Alot will be sports (windsurfing) and zoom is very important.

I will learn a couple of advanced functions but am not and never will have time to learn how to be a real photographer.

Burst mode is very useful too,

I would like good quality video too.

I think from all I have read that the FZ wins in Burst mode, video and image quality.

Yet I am very tempted by the SX50’s zoom as that will make a huge difference to how much action I can capture that’s out at sea.

Suggestions?

10:21 am - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#138 Prakash Wadhwani

Hi Phil,

I’d put my money on the Canon based on your requirements. The extra reach of the zoom will play a pivotal role as per your requirements. The picture quality of the Canon also seems to be a bit better, so is the burst mode + the video is good too.

Checking this link where a head-to-head comparison is made might aid you in deciding.

http://snapsort.com/compare/Canon-PowerShot-SX50-HS-vs-Nikon-Coolpix-P520

If at all you decide for the Nikon, perhaps you should opt for the newer 520 as against the older 510.

Do check all review sites & see test pix & videos for yourself + read a lot of user reviews. Try to go to a store & hold both in your own hands too & see which feels better.

Good luck ... :)

11:10 am - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#139 Fabio

  To Phil
  First of all , forget that snapsort comparison, it’s full of errors as they always are, sadly a lot of people trust them to choose a camera, even reviews here with examples can be misleading,  there’s nothing like using the camera by yourself.
  , surfers move towards the beach and that makes photo easier as they get closer to the photographer. Windsurfers as far as I know tend to move in a paralel line to the beach, so they will get closer and them move away , I think that 600 mm may be too short for those photos , but you know better how far you will be from them.
  The Nikon P510 is a slow camera with an extraordinary lens, even digital zoom is very good, so the diference from 1000 to 1200 isn’t important, the digital zoom in Nikon doesn’t look digital at all , pictures taken at 2000 mm look very good, look for them on Flickr.  As I sad before it’s slow, the P520 is faster but still slower if you compare with other bridge , but the lens is remains the same for a good reason, it’s very sharp, much sharper than my 70 -300 VR or my 45-200 micro 4/3.
    Think of the Nikon as a sniper rifle, slow but very accurate.
    The Canon is a very good do it all camera , I don’t like the small and low resolution LCD. The EVF is also small and low resolution , about the same as Nikon, but in good light they can be used without problems,, my main concern with Canon for you is chromatic aberration, purple fringe is very easy to apear with this camera, and your type of shooting, a surfer in bright light with the sky as background is the perfect situation for chromatic aberrations, Nikon P510/520 is excelent in that area. I tested them and all serious reviews show that problem with Canon.
  Burst mode in Nikon makes the EVF/LCD to turn black, you can’t see what the camera is doing, not good, there’s a pre cache function that is fantastic because you can take the picture before pressing the shuter, it is avaliable in some camras, but Nikon decided to keep file limited to 3MP in that function, a shame !  I can’t remember if burst mode in Canon shows every frame , you should check it. 
    The Panasonic should be a better camera for your purposes but it’s only 600 mm,  the 2.8 aperture will be useless for your purposes, unless you need to use it in very cloudy days, image quality is good , but in my tests I found Nikon to be better, but it’s slow, I think of it as a sniper rifle, not a machine gun, slow but very accurate, if you don’t mind take your time and compose ypur shot it’s a great choice.
    There are 2 more contenders in this area, Sony HX300 and Fuji HS50 , both are very fast in focus and overall operation and movies with Sony are always excelent.

12:56 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#140 Richard Hannam

I’d better toss in a curved ball here. I have an FZ200 & bought it for social photography to save lugging around my heavy pro kit. However, the Panasonic is so ggod that, in certain situations, I’ve used it on pro shoots too!
One of the things I like is that, although the advertised zoom is 24x, it’s actually possible to get up to 96x zoom!!
Mind you, unsurprisingly, you’ll need a tripod!

7:08 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#141 Jim

The specifications listed at snapsort are correct and can be verified at the manufacturers home page. I have used all three cameras. The FZ200 IS excellent, but it only reaches 600mm The Canon SX50 HS is the clear winner here with it’s 24-1200mm lens. The focusing is lightning fast, accurate smooth and quiet. You won’t hear the Zoom motor in the HD Videos. It also has a hot shoe. Many people that bought the FZ200 wish it had a longer Zoom, most likely the next model will have a longer Zoom. It’s the only drawback of the FZ200. If you shoot sports, wildlife or anything that requires the long Zoom, the SX50 HS can’t be beat! Ironic, but it costs less too!

7:41 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#142 Richard Hannam

As I said above, the FZ200 can achieve 96x zoom.

7:44 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#143 Jim

We are talking “Optical Zoom” here, any camera can reach higher levels of Zoom digitally, either in camera, or on the computer. If that were the case, the Fujifilm HS50EXR with it’s 24-1000mm has a switch to go right to 2000mm By the way, the HS50EXR with the CMOS II Sensor is the only Super Zoom with Phase Detection, along with Contrast Detection, and it’s sensor is 2/3 inch, way bigger than any other in it’s class. It does have Manual Zoom, but it saves battery power and it stops at any focal length, not the pre-set stops like so many other cameras. Do your homework Phil, don’t depend on others to make your decision for you. ..... They may just be wrong! Then, who can you blame?

8:03 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#144 Jim

Gee Richard, I’ll bet you own an FZ200 and FABIO has a P520, Do you two have stock in these companies? Yes, I returned both those models for the SX50 HS, but now I wish I waited for the Fujifilm HS50EXR. They are putting Phase Detection into all their better cameras. As each one is updated, Phase Detection goes in. That’s what DSLR’s use to focus fast and accurate. The FZ200 is a year old already, the replacement won’t come out until their new sensor is ready. And Nikon, they just have the reputation of the P510 to stand on. They have plenty of refurbs. on their site. What does that tell you? Already a refurbished P520,  What a Camera!!!

8:23 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#145 Richard Hannam

Why is it that practical comments lead people to think they are biased in some way? Perhaps it’s because someone doesn’t agree with them & they don’t like it!
Anyway, the FZ200 is an excellent camera…better than some people think. But to get the best out of it requires at the very least, a basic understanding of multiple photography techniques. Having said that, a beginner can get good results generally when using just the basic automatic settings. But don’t buy it unless you have the desire to improve your photography. If you just want to take snaps, save your money & spend under£100 on a simple point & shoot. On the other hand, it won’t do the job of a SLR either.
Coming back to the zoom, it doesn’t matter to me whether I’m using optical or digital zoom. It’s the results that count & I defy anyone to tell the difference i shots I’ve taken with both types of zoom.
After all, I’m a working pro & therefore in a good position to judge.
Whatever camera you choose ultimately, you won’t be fully saisfied with it sooner or later.

8:42 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#146 Phil

Thanks for the comments guys.  The debate is good.  I can see there is no clear winner.

My ideal situation would be an hour at the beach with each, but that’s not going to happen so I’ll have to stick to translating everyone’s comments to my desired use, skills and situation. 

At my local beach its cross shore wind, so people are moving towards and away from the beach.  The outside distances can be quite significant.

I think I can rule out the Nikon if its slow and particularly if it blanks the EVF while I try to get a sequence of someone jumping, wave riding etc.  That would be a total pain.  If its a sniper rifle I think I want a cross between a machine gun and a shotgun - with good range.  Not asking too much am I?

Re the SX50, a bit of imperfection in the colors probably isn’t a big deal, provided they are nicely focused, so if that is the biggest downside of the SX50 I think I am ok with it.  It also sounds easier to use for a novice.  Or am I underestimating the effects of the aberrations?  Is there a good sample that shows how they appear, worst case? 

I do wish the SX50 had AVCHD and could do movies at 60fps like the FZ200 though. 

Can the FZ200 use its intelligent zoom in movie mode to go beyond 24x?  How does it look - anyone have a sample of a 1080p movie at >24x zoom off the FZ200?

To give you an idea of what photos I’d be taking, check out a pro’s website here in Tenerife and click the windsurfing link http://www.bj-productions.com/

So, 1080p Vs 50x zoom….. decisions, decisions!

9:11 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#147 Jim

Phil, you can find many examples on youtube. There’s even a guy giving lessons, learning how to shoot with the FZ200. It’s a very odd camera to say the least, and Panasonic wrote their guide with their eyes closed so watching those youtube lessons will just about be required. One thing for sure, if it’s windy and near the sand you will want to get a plastic cover for the camera that fits into a lens protector element like a UV or Skylight filter because that sand will damage any of these cameras. I’m not describing an under water housing, these are inexpensive covers that will save you from the high cost of repairing a damaged camera. Wind + sand=Damage. I would also suggest going to each manufacturers website before choosing and it wouldn’t hurt to at least take a basic course on Photography. Some camera shops offer them for around $50.00 for a two hour class. Some camera shops will give you the class if you buy from them, depending on your location, it may be better than the lowest cost on Amazon. There are still some real camera shops around.
If your subjects are distant, obviously you want as much OPTICAL zoom as you can get 1200mm is becoming standard. Digital Zoom is the same as cropping on the computer or Kiosk. Figure on an extra $50.00 to print the manual, Canon’s is 185 pages, you’ll use all of your ink, that’s why people go to a printer store.
Fujifilm is the only company giving Paper users guides, others give a CD-ROM, Sony posts it on their site. Hard to read like that

9:58 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#148 Phil

Hmm ... Just read the reviews for the Fuji.  1080p AND 42x optical zoom.  I think I have a new favourite.

10:01 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#149 Jim

Canon SX50 HS is Full HD 1080p Just look at their respective sites.

10:08 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#150 Phil

Thanks for the advice about the cover, I’ll make sure to get one. 

Re 1080p, I should have said 60fps Vs 30fps (both at 1080p).  The higher fps really makes a difference when recording fast moving sports.

So, in very simple terms, for my requrements, the weakness of the Fuji is image quality, the Canon SX50 only does 30fps and the Panasonic only has a 24x zoom.

I need to decide which of them bothers me the least :)

11:03 pm - Thursday, May 23, 2013

#151 John Wewege

Looking at the reviews on reputable websites, there is doubt that the Panasonic FZ200 is the best all round bridge camera. Most camera manufactures initially chased the pixel numbers, now it is the turn of the x zoom! An optical zoom of x50 is no good as the image quality of the photos at the tele end is not up to scratch. In my expereinces a zoom of around x24 is more than sufficient if you want decent pics without the associated blurr that one experience despite image stabilising. The same apllies to the pixel count. For bridge cameras the ideal pixel count is around 12. A much higher pixel count in any small size sensor is senseless. The performance of the FZ200 in terms of shutter and focus speed, continious shooting, high aperture acroos the x24 zoom, video quality is the best. The camera offers so much. Its an ideal camera for wildlife and action phtography!

5:47 am - Friday, May 24, 2013

#152 Eric

Just how many reviews have you done, and where are all of your reviews posted?

6:10 am - Friday, May 24, 2013

#153 john wewege

Eric, I was referring to reviews by Photography Blog, DPReviews, What Digital Camera, Expert Reviews, CNet (UK), Cameralab and the like. DPReviews have a good camera comparison facitlity, which is far better than Snapsort that is inaccurate and does not factor in all the important aspects in their comparisons.Regards, John

6:25 am - Friday, May 24, 2013

#154 Eric

John,
Of the names you’ve listed, dpreview is the best one to trust, but I don’t believe the Fujifilm HS50EXR or the SL1000 have been fully reviewed by any of them. The Sony HX300 hasn’t been around enough yet either. Truth is, even dpreview doesn’t give any camera near 90- 100% grade. Even a camera with a high score needs to have a track record, and today anything that doesn’t get a Firmware update is very rare. Many lenses are getting F.W. updates too, not just cameras But you know that one mans treasure is another mans ... let’s just say not his treasure. I think people should consider their own needs more than those of reviewers and commenters. Like Phil said above, a little color fringe really won’t bother him if the camera otherwise suits his needs. Btw, John, I didn’t mean any disrespect to you, I should have phrased that much better than I did. My bad!  John, your name reminds me of the famous “Weegee”  Regards. ....Eric

8:17 am - Friday, May 24, 2013

#155 Riccardo

Hallo and thanks for all your usefull reviews!!!
Sorry for my bad english… I follow your blog since it seems here in Italy there is nothing at your level. Said that I would like to have your opinion…. I am starting now with photography and I wouldn’t like to start with a reflex.
I am thinking about buying a bridge camera or something similar.
Would you prefer this Panasonic DMC-FZ200 or a Fujifilm FinePix HS50EXR ?
Thanks in advance for your help

10:20 am - Friday, May 31, 2013

#156 Claude B.

Good day,

I’m very surprised to see the quality in RAW file is a lesser quality then JPG!

On another well known site DPreview.com*, it is completely the opposite!
* http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/panasonic-lumix-dmc-fz200/4

8:37 pm - Friday, May 31, 2013

#157 Eric

Claude,
dpreview can be trusted, here it’s more of an amusement!

9:03 pm - Friday, May 31, 2013

#158 Claude B.

@Eric, Ouf!  I like your response. :)

1:53 pm - Saturday, June 1, 2013

#159 Gabi

When is the new model coming out???

7:26 pm - Monday, June 3, 2013

#160 Claude B.

FZ200 A Top Choice in Advance Cameras as per ConsumersReport (August, 2013) distributed across North America (US and Canada

#1 Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ200
#2     ”        ”    DMC GH3
#3 Nikon D7100

              :)

8:17 pm - Thursday, July 4, 2013

#161 Joe Prete

I wouldn’t rush out to buy the FZ200 just yet, unless there’s a large discount in the price. Panasonic has their own, all new sensor and they are working on another, in a joint project with Fujifilm. Just when you think a camera is the best, they often come out with a better one! 

I can’t wait to see the DMC- FZ250

And, if you are “Left eye Dominant” Be aware, the D7100 may not be for you. This Viewfinder is only for the Right Eye!
... Joe Prete

8:39 pm - Thursday, July 4, 2013

#162 Claude B.

Thanks Joe for your repply.

DMC FZ250? Hmmm!
It is a rumor?  Or a 100% possible fact?

My need is before Sept. 2013
As for the Nikon D7100, no problem I’m a cyclop. :)

9:14 pm - Thursday, July 4, 2013

#163 Joe Prete

Claude,
It’s no secret, Panasonic’s Micro color splitter is a significant improvement from the bayer sensor that has been in use for a long time by everyone except Sigma who use the Foveon sensor. (They bought Foveon quite a while ago) The agreement with Fujifilm has just recently been signed. But these are two different avenues. I assume the PANFUJI design will take more time, but Fujifilm should not be underestimated. Open up a recent LCD TV and you’ll find Fujifilm’s back lit LED Panel in there too. I would say the next few months should be interesting, and worth the wait too! Regarding Nikon’s D7100, a very nice APSC/DX Camera, it is almost unusable with the left eye due to the recessed OVF and it should have been placed better too. Left handed people have suffered enough with cameras. They have had to adapt to the SLR, now the DSLR and I don’t think they’re comfortable with the advanced compacts either. Years ago, in schools, it was common for the left handed student to get cracked on the knuckles with the wooden ruler. My left handed brother had to learn guitar in a very uncomfortable position. Now they come both ways, but it’s too late for him, he’s adapted to a right handed world. It did give many start-up businesses an open new field though! I should say, I’m happy to be right handed. But shame on you, Nikon.
... Joe Prete

12:11 am - Friday, July 5, 2013

#164 Rob Fieser

I have the FZ200 after having had the Nikon P510.
I had Fuji Superzooms earlier and liked them. Just one thing about sensor size. I believe the Fuji HS50exr sensor is 1/2”, not 2/3” The X-S1 does have the 2/3” sensor. The F/2.8 max aperture from 25-600mm is what makes the FZ200 so special for me, a sports enthusiast. Its picture quality is not as good as a decent DSLR with a 70-200mm F/2.8 lens, but it is pretty good at ISO 100 and 200. The camera costs much less than most of the F/2.8 70-200mm lenses. The 8X slow-motion videos are also very useful for athlete or his/her trainer in analyzing a certain movement.

11:53 pm - Tuesday, July 9, 2013

#165 Joe Prete

Hi Rob,
The X-S1 is old technology now, yea you have the sensor sizes correct, but who are you replying to? We were talking here 4 days ago. I think you’ll find some of that information on the HS50EXR Comments section if you need to. Btw, the FZ200 will shoot at F2.8 in Aperture Priority, or some extremely specific situations. Actually, we had a hell of a time trying to get it to use F2.8 in any other mode so if you need F2.8 use Aperture Priority so that you’ll be sure that’s what you get.
... Joe Prete

12:29 am - Wednesday, July 10, 2013

#166 Rob Fieser

Hi, Joe,
I was responding to a post by Jim on May 23rd. I couldn’t see that anyone had corrected it. I know the focusing on the HS50exr is faster than on the X-S1. I have used the Aperture setting a lot on sports photography, and it has really helped. F/2.8 really makes lot of shots possible that weren’t with my Nikon P510. Of course, I miss the extra zoom.

7:38 pm - Wednesday, July 10, 2013

#167 Joe Prete

Hi Rob,
He doesn’t sound too friendly, some have that “mine is better than yours” attitude that we can live without. We try to help people get the best results with what they have. Richard Hannam Knows the FZ200 very well, he’s getting great images at 96X by also using the Digital Zoom. He’s right too, I tried it with the FZ100, and I was very impressed. I got used to avoiding Digital Zoom, but apparently we were missing out until he said that. I never updated because I’ve got way too many cameras to keep.

All brands, these are paid for, not given to us for review, that may have been many years ago, but some think it still exists. I’ve got some comments on one of these pages about Panasonic’s newest sensor. I’m looking forward to it, I wondered how they could top the FZ200 Rob, mark the post, so you can join the conversation. Your name sounds so familiar, are you a Teacher?
Photographer? Maybe both! I may have met you.  Anyhow, keep in touch, it’s good to hear from you!
... Joe Prete

8:07 pm - Wednesday, July 10, 2013

#168 Richard Hannam

The best resource by far I’ve come across to get the best out of this camera, and others, is Graham Houghton’s videos on YouTube. Well worth a visit.

8:21 pm - Wednesday, July 10, 2013

#169 Rob Fieser

Thanks, Joe, for the welcome and thanks, Richard, for the information about the instructional video.
I have used three cameras at recent athletics (track field) meets: the Casio ZR100, the Sony A65, and the Panasonic FZ200. They’re all valuable in their own way. I think the FZ200 is the most versatile. The image quality isn’t as good as a DSLR with a good lens, but it’s not far off at ISO 100 and 200. Among the features I really like is the 8X slow motion VGA video, great for all kinds of trainers and athletes when analyzing a movement. The other, longer superzooms are capable of great sports shots, too, but, in less than full daylight,  I think they are restricted by their F/5.6 and above maximum apertures at full zoom. In order to get the same amount of light as the FZ200 at ISO 200, they have to hike their ISO to 800 or higher. If I could ask for an improvement , it would be to extend the zoom range to maybe 840mm with F/4 available at full zoom and F/2.8 at 600mm, like now.
I am a teacher and I love to take pictures, but I am a mere enthusiast and not a professional.

11:32 pm - Thursday, July 11, 2013

#170 mario

I have recently bought an FZ200 and still struggling to get the most out of it, looks nice tough I’m not an expert at all. Is there a way to view photos without turning the camera on? Some cameras allow to do that by simply pressing the preview button but it does not work with the fz200

8:52 pm - Monday, August 5, 2013

#171 Alvaro Serpa

We all know: there are no FULL PERFECT Cameras. But this FZ200 is near that state.

8:35 pm - Sunday, August 11, 2013

#172 Graham

I purchased a FZ200 and most of the time it does all I want. However I can’t get good pictures at football matches under floodlights unless I’m close to the subject and actually under the floodlight.

I’ve been using the iA mode under floodlights - would another mode be better?

Any advice would be appreciated.

12:44 pm - Sunday, September 15, 2013

#173 Claude B.

@Graham, the professional photographers are in the front row, they have big lenses but they don’t have the f/2 all the way through the zoom up to 600m as the FZ200.  :)

4:39 pm - Sunday, September 15, 2013

#174 Rob Fieser

I am kind of echoing what Claude wrote. Shooting outdoor sports under the lights is challenging. Pros have “bright” lens (with big maximum apertures (usually F/2.8 or F/4.0) on their expensive DSLR’s which can use high ISO settings (1600 and above) and still have little or no noise in their images. Those lenses cost thousands of dollars (or Euros or pounds or ...)  The pros need that in order to get a fast enough shutter speed to freeze the action. How fast is enough? For me, it’s 1/250 of a second and above. For others it’s 1/500 of a second, at least. Still others want 1/1000 of a second. If I were using the FZ200, I would set the aperture to F/2.8 and the ISO setting to 800 or 1600. There will be noise in the pictures, but you have a chance at getting image quality good enough for small prints and web use.

6:00 pm - Sunday, September 15, 2013

#175 Graham

Not too worried about a bit of noise - Having set the camera to ISO 800 and the aperture to f2.8 which is the best mode to you?

6:32 pm - Sunday, September 15, 2013

#176 Graham

Should have said best mode to use (not to you)

6:33 pm - Sunday, September 15, 2013

#177 Rob Fieser

I would put it in P (program) mode. I would first try to get the WB (white balance) adjusted) I would then set up the burst mode to continuous autofocus (which is supposed to shoot at 5.5 FPS). But this is only, my preference. You may find some other setting better. Play around with it. You will figure it out fast.

6:47 pm - Sunday, September 15, 2013

#178 Gilles

Hello,

Is it better than Sony RX10 at sport, low-light ?

Thansk for the answer

10:07 am - Wednesday, January 15, 2014

#179 Rob Fieser

I would say that both the RX10 and Olympus Stylus 1 are better in low light. However, the RX100 costs more than twice as much and the Stylus 1 costs between $100 and $200 more AND they have half the zoom range.

4:13 pm - Wednesday, January 15, 2014

#180 Roald46

If you are interested in the video performances of this camera: Look at this nature film (21’)
http://youtu.be/LVgCpbqZMfU
shot mostly with Lumix DMC-FZ200. The rest was shot with a video-camera SONY HDR-CX730E (you can see the difference, sharp but not crispy-sharp like the Lumix).
First minutes are all Sony, after the snow is mostly Lumix DMC-FZ200, night-shots at the end are again with the Sony video-camera.
All shot in AVCHD 1920 x 1080 50P, edited in 50i with Edius 7.
Sorry that the commentary is in Dutch, but that’s not what it is about here. Is it? Enjoy!

3:38 am - Wednesday, January 29, 2014

#181 Joe Prete

Roald46,
All things considered, the DMC-FZ200 Does a very decent job, but this camera is usually bought for it’s fast F2.8 lens (for stills, you need to shoot in Aperture Priority or Manual mode to take advantage of that) But if you wanted to go one better, you could Buy the camera that the FZ200 was modeled after, but it does cost a bit more, The Leica V-LUX-4 sells for about $900.00 U.S.

It seems like the consumer grade Camcorders days are numbered, with almost every Digital camera having 1080p HD Quality video.
… Joe Prete

5:00 am - Wednesday, January 29, 2014

#182 Roald46

J.P.,Tnx for comment. I will wait until there is a successor for the FZ200. The FZ72 is definitely not. Zoom-lens is OK, but very difficult, not to say almost impossible, to work manually with focus. Since in the same shop (Belgium) the prices from the FZ200 recently went down from €550 to €379, could mean that they are liquidating their stocks for something new.
Que sera sera. Didn’t know that there was such a difference in lens between Lumix and Leice? But if you say so I will definitely take your advice seriously.

11:42 pm - Wednesday, January 29, 2014

#183 JOE PRETE

Roald46,
The DMC-FZ200 Will be very hard to top, and as for price, it’s been selling for near full list price for quite a while, and still it is often “Sold Out”. It takes an extremely good camera to do that!

Tip: When you post on Youtube, try to lead with the highlight, in this case, FZ200 will get you many more views. That’s where you will find Graham Houghton’s excellent technique illustrations.

With your post, a side by side comparison may take some time to prepare, but it would draw a much larger audience. With some practice, you’ll get there. Good Luck. ... Joe Prete

2:04 am - Thursday, January 30, 2014

#184 Roald46

Tnx again for the tips.
I’ve put already the highlights. If I find the time I will try to do a comparison like I did for the FZ72 which collected now more then 37.000 views:
http://youtu.be/csSFrNPx2CI
You can also email me on .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

12:31 pm - Thursday, January 30, 2014

#185 jan

i love this site,because this is a real site you can trust,i believe other sites somethimes get payd ,or dont dare to give a bad review of a cam,because they then lose sponsering from the manufacturer..beside that..
First o read that the canon sx280 is a fantastic compact camera,so i bought these..ok,the close up pictures are “somethimes"good,but the zoom is useless,you get massive quality loss.
then i returned it .
Then i dont want to take a risk and get a Fuji xs1 with the large sensor,if you believe the internet,the size of a large sensor is all what matters!!what a joke ;i got better pictures of a 2 year old s100 canon.
Everything from the xs1 dont look crisp,indeed a very fast and very good in low light camera,but i want a good picture!!! .then i read 2 nights forums,i dont believe review site ‘s anymore…
Lot of crap..
i take the xs1 and returned it,and got the fz200.
Lucky that the shop easy take back cameras that are nicely opend..
and after a “scaring"test i finaly got a cam with a fantastic lens,nice colors,good in the low light..
I dont believe it,this cam has at full zoom a perfect quality!!the micro is so good..and very nice to use..
i look also at the Panasonic fz70/72,but the pictures are not so good as the fz200,you can see at the Panasonic site this cam is quality wise under the fz200,and is also cheaper then the Fz200.
On the lens you dont see “Leica”, thats probely the reason for the less quality.
and ,now ,finaly take pictures!!

 

7:47 pm - Sunday, February 2, 2014

#186 Roald46

Despite I am filming and rarely take pictures, i can fully agree with your opinion of FZ200 against FZ72.
The lens of the FZ72 is not the worst:
http://youtu.be/csSFrNPx2CI
but no quik-focus, no external micro input, fixed lcd.I have FZ200 and “had” FVZ72 which I sold after 2 months and bought the Sony HX300 which, until now, seems to be a better choice because of more logical ergonomic and, most important, a focus-ring and cheaper then the FZ72.Still i think FZ200 is more crispy but can you compare the sharpness of a 50x zoom against a 24x zoom ???

11:35 pm - Sunday, February 2, 2014

#187 JOE PRETE

@ JAN, Post 189,
Jan, so are you settled now on the Panasonic DMC-FZ200? As you implied, the lens is a Leica formula and design, but the fact that it has a very fast F2.8 Aperture makes it one of the best low light performers in it’s group. The camera that the FZ200 was modeled after costs about twice the price, The Leica V LUX-4 (Note: to use that fast lens at F2.8, you need to set it in Manual or Aperture Priority Mode)  Regarding the FZ200, it has been a class leader since it’s introduction, the other Panasonic models in the group are priced lower accordingly. So, if the 25-600mm lens is right for you, then it is still the one to get. If you need a longer zoom, write us with that information and we’ll help you sort it out. The 1200mm lens the longest available in this group.
... Joe Prete

6:49 am - Monday, February 3, 2014

#188 JOE PRETE

Jan,
Sorry, Post #185
... Joe

7:04 am - Monday, February 3, 2014

#189 Roald46

Want to know what the FZ200 offers in video?
Here are the work-shots of my new nature-film about a green spot in the city of Antwerp. These shots are all taken with a slider and FZ200. Sometimes I use a Canon CU-lens 500mm or even Raynox250. The second shot of the little white mushrooms (0,5mm) were taken with a Canon 50mm SLR lens mounted in reverse on the Lumix lens. The bird was shot on 6m distance with the Lumix tele-converter 1.7x. Enjoy!
http://youtu.be/GHfx6_AKYnE

1:47 am - Thursday, March 6, 2014

#190 Mark

HI, can anyone tell me which bridge cameras is better between Canon SX50 HS and the PANASONIC LUMIX DMC FZ200 in your opinion? Thanks

6:46 am - Tuesday, April 15, 2014

#191 Claude B.

@Mark, post#190

I asked the same question before I bought the FZ200.
I went to a store who had those two cameras, the first test I feel in difference was the handling both of them, It was very clear the FZ200 was more confortable and secure in holding the camera. Then both have great lenses, I ask myself if a 24-1200mm was any help for my need. I’m not a spy, I don’t want to carry a tripod for shots over 700mm!
But I didn’t not compare the photos quality on both, not in store anyway. After I’ve seen many very positive opinions* on the FZ200, my choice was easy: Lumix FZ200.
In conclusion, go to a store and compare them on the place.
* See those videos from Graham Houghton he’ve done extremely great informations, 21 videos, on FZ200. He have a free iBook on that camera alone.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLFoIf_3ex-YIxsyKHN7DlBdZsMcAkWvot

http://www.photographyblog.com/reviews/canon_powershot_sx50_hs_review/conclusion/

2:49 pm - Tuesday, April 15, 2014

#192 Joe Prete

DMC-FZ200 vs. SX50 HS You are kidding, right?
You should realize that the FZ200 and the SX50 HS are two very different cameras. The FZ200 has an advantage if you need the fast lens, but it’s F2.8 is only guaranteed in Aperture Priority, or Manual Mode, any other setting will most likely be other than F2.8 Graham’s videos are great, but you should know that this technology is close to two years back now, so be prepared for the Camera market to amaze us again, as it so often does. The FZ200 is still selling at $500.00 US so if that is a big investment for you, it should be taken into consideration. Many buy this camera for that fast lens, but lack the ability to utilize it, so they “think” they are getting some benefit
but it may only be the placebo effect! Panasonic, is one of the Big leaders of technology, and based on their recent 4G cameras, I would expect their next SuperZoom camera to be spectacular. Some people believe that it may be coming this July. I don’t know, but it would be unusual to leave a camera in their lineup over 2 years, and we are coming close to it now. As for the SX50 HS, I’m using it for1.5 years now, many times at 1200mm’s and I have never put it on a Tripod once! Canon’s Image Stabilization is fantastic. I never expected to hand hold 1200mm’s but I’ve had very few deleted images. Most VR & IS Systems would need to be shut off, when using a Tripod. It’s one or the other, but not both.
… Joe Prete

4:02 am - Wednesday, April 16, 2014

#193 Chuna North

will pana will produce FZ250 ever ?

9:51 am - Wednesday, April 23, 2014

#194 Joe Prete

Chuna North,
If you read the post just before yours, I said that,  more than likely   the release will be in July. The FZ200, like the SX50 HS is having a two year run. In both cases, they are still selling well, and the FZ200 is still selling for $500.00 For that reason, Panasonic is more than willing to wait this out. Can you blame them?
… Joe

 

 

6:22 pm - Wednesday, April 23, 2014

#195 Gabor

How do you clean the lense when it is dirty or has fingerprints on?
(I have used a lense cleaning set by Hama for my previous cameras - this must contain alcohol as it evaporates fast and disolves fingerprint type pollution)
This is what the users’ manual states “When there is dirt (water, oil, and fingerprints, etc.) on the surface of the lens, ... Lightly wipe the surface of the lens with a soft, dry cloth before and after taking pictures”
Experience suggests that such cleaning will not clear oily pollution or fingerptints just make a large patch out of it…
Could the lense be coated with anything that is hurt by alcohol type lense cleaning fluids?
Thanks in advance… Gabor

9:53 am - Saturday, May 3, 2014

#196 Mel

Hi,
Firstly this blog is great. I’m pretty much cross eyed with all the reading I’ve been doing the last few days - both reviews and comments - and I can’t believe how helpful both are. But I’ve come to a grinding halt and I really am unsure which way to go with my camera choice.

So the deal is this. I’m a total novice. I don’t understand a lot of what I’ve been reading, though the more you read, the more you start to learn, which is good. And I do want to learn, though I won’t pretend and say that I am ever going to work my way up to professional levels because nope. I’ve strictly been a point and shoot person until now. I want to move beyond that, though. I have a Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZR1. It’s nice enough, but it just doesn’t cut it for certain circumstances.

So I go to conventions. Comic Con type events. Sometimes I’m close to the stage. Sometimes I’m not. Depending on the venue and the tickets I get, distance can vary, but my current pocket camera really can’t handle it either way. I can zoom in well enough usually, (again that varies) but the pictures are always grainy and pretty awful. It can be low lighting - always indoors. Sometimes lights on, sometimes off. Depends on which event organisers are running it. Flash is permitted for a little while but then must be turned off when taking pics. And the biggest issue I have with my little camera is that it’s not fast enough. The guests on stage always like to walk around. Now I’m not talking about speeds like a bird in flight or fast sports. But they’re always in motion. So mostly I end up with grainy, blurry photos that are really disappointing.

So to sum up, I want something with a decent zoom, can handle low lighting and is good with speed. Other than these events, I just take regular snap shots of my cat (a bit obsessively) and family stuff around the home.

Aaaaaand now you all know I’m a geeky cat lover! But I’d appreciate it if you’d help me out with a camera recommendation anyway!

I was totally sold on the Nikon P520 until I realised the speed issues. I believed the best analogy I read was the “sniper not a machine gun” comment. Or words to that effect. I then moved onto the Panasonic FZ200 as it sounds SO good. But to be honest, I’ve been scared off by how complex it is to operate. Beginners beware warnings and all! Or is it really not that bad?  But now I’m (maybe) leaning towards the Canon SX50. But it’s difficult because I was really, really hot on the Nikon and the Panasonic.

So, over to you guys. Any feedback would be most welcome.

Mel

4:13 pm - Saturday, May 3, 2014

#197 Joe Prete

Mel,
What is your budget for this? The FZ200 is due to be replaced, most likely in July, but right now it’s selling for the full list Price $599.95
There’s a lot going on at Panasonic, many rumors. I would be very cautious right now. Is Flash allowed at this convention? Also, you never really said the focal length you need. Are you always going to be close to the stage? I might say the Panasonic LX7 is good, if you’re always going to be that close. It has the Fastest lens of the compact cameras, but I don’t think you understand what “Fast” is in Photographic terms. The LX7 does have a short Zoom, the FZ200 is a Medium Zoom and the SX50 HS is a Super Zoom. The SX50 HS is twice the focal length of the FZ200. Is there going to be any other use for this camera. or is it just for this convention type of shows?

You are most definitely not ready to buy, there is more to know before you blow your budget on the wrong camera. Where are you located? That can play a big part in availability. I’ve heard of Comic- con, I believe that’s in the US, maybe the West coast? If you don’t have someone to help coach you, send me an email and I’ll explain a few things to you. My email is already in the comments section of many reviews, but let me know here, if you need it again.

Whoever sent the request about cleaning his lens, STOP, and wait for some help, before you damage the surface. If it doesn’t come through here, try writing back. I received the message, but no name
… Joe Prete

5:33 pm - Saturday, May 3, 2014

#198 Mel

To Joe Prete

Thank you so much. I’ve just emailed you.

Mel

6:59 pm - Saturday, May 3, 2014

#199 Joe Prete

Gabor,
I see you’ve posted earlier, and asked again, but that one must be stuck at the moderator. Either way, when cleaning a lens, you want to start with a mild cleaning and advance slowly, never putting too much pressure, or strong chemicals on the glass. Start with a Bulb type of blower, and blow off any dust or lose dirt on the lens. You can’t overdo it with a bulb blower, so do it from all angles. Next, have a good Microfiber cloth ready, and give the lens a Huff of your breath, as you see it fog up, start with the microfiber cloth in the center, and move it lightly in a circular motion, work your way to the outer part of the lens. It will dry on it’s own, so you need to do this quickly, but again, no real pressure, the cloth can be folded, and use a very light touch. You can repeat this as necessary, but it should come clean with this process by the second or third try.

In the future, try to prevent the lens from getting dirt and the oil from your fingers. If it’s a very expensive lens, you may want to keep a UV or Skylight filter on it, until you need it for an important shoot. I only use a filter when it’s necessary, as in the case of a Cir. Polarizer, but many people believe in keeping that UV filter on, even for shooting. That is a personal decision. A lens hood will also help to protect the glass, and of course the lens cap should be on when you’re not using the lens. Just in case the lens did not come clean with the process I gave you, check your owners manual and/or call the manufacturer and find out what they recommend. Remember that if they do recommend any fluid type of cleaner, never wet the glass with it, put it onto the prescribed cloth. Too much liquid can seep into the edges, and get behind the glass. One other thing I should mention, some people worry about a few specs of dust, and although it is annoying, it most likely will not effect your images. If you have any doubt, hold a tooth pick in close to the front of the lens, and take a picture. When you print, or post that picture, look for the tooth pick. It probably won’t show up at all.

The brand Blower that I use is GIOTTO, there are several versions, and the back breather hole is not effected by using it, so you won’t pull dust through the blower and spray it on the lens. Cost $8.00
They can be cleaned with water, and air dried. They last for years.

The cloths are made by many companies, I use “Photo-Clear” it’s made by Schneider Corporation of America, Woodbury NY Phone number is 516 496 8500 it should cost about $5.00 for a 4X4 inch cloth, and it can be washed, and reused. I’m sure there are many other good brands available. If you have any other questions, just ask. Someone on, or watching the blog will help you.
… Joe Prete

8:15 pm - Saturday, May 3, 2014

#200 Joe Prete

Guys,
Panasonic slashed their prices, THE FZ200 is now $389.00
that’s down from $599.00 Check Amazon, B&H is still closed.

12:57 am - Sunday, May 4, 2014

Entry Tags

hd video, 3 inch LCD, review, 1080p, 12 megapixel, video, movie, super-zoom, RAW, 1920x1080, super zoom, f2.8, wideangle, ultra-zoom, mega-zoom, Panasonic, Lumix, 12fps, 24x, fz200, DMC-FZ200, dmc fz200

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