newbie with a question


TPF Noob!
Apr 4, 2006
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west virginia
Hi everyone

Was wondering if I could get some advice/reviews on a camera I have been looking at. I want to upgrade my digital camera, a 5.0 mega pixel to a higher mega pixel. I have been looking at the Panasonic DMC-FZ30K Lumix Digi Cam. I like the fact that it is 8.0 m.p. and can be used on auto or manual focus. Has anyone here had experience with this camera or able to recommend another in that price range? Thanks :)
The first thing that strikes me about your question is that you probably don't actually *need* more megapixels. I could be wrong - you could be printing everything at A3 size and have found that you want greater size capability - but I doubt it. I suspect that you're actually wanting something which will yield better quality results than what you have at present.

Better results means better sensor and better lens, not more megapixels. For that kind of money, you might be able to stretch to an entry level DSLR with the kit lens - a superior technology sensor and the option to expand the lenses. Also, you'll get a proper viewfinder and more options for shooting modes.

The Panasonic Lumix FZ... models are all pretty good cameras, but top end ZLR type "pro-sumer" cameras are about the same price as entry level DSLR cameras, and it is well worth considering something with a bigger sized sensor.

Like Rob says - more mega pixels don't necessarily mean better shots.

The increase from 5mp to 8mp, while it sounds a lot isn't really. It's an increase of approximately 700pixels horizontally and 1000pixels vertically (depending on the cameras).
That small increase really only lets you increase the size of your prints by couple of inches without interpolating using software.
It's something to do with some inverse square law of's been mentioned on here before a couple of times.

You may be better off getting a camera along the lines of Canon's Digital Rebel XT or even it's predecessor, a used Digital Rebel and spending money on lenses. The Rebel XT is 8mp but it's a DSLR. The Rebel is 6.3mp so it'll be cheaper and again it's a DSLR.

You'll be amazed if you switch to DSLR - not by the increase in quality but by how much you learn and how quickly. The DSLRs are so flexible and fully manual if you want (your compact won't be as adjustable) so you'll see the effect that every change has on your shot more clearly because the DSLR has so many variables with smaller graduations. By that, I mean that your compact may have Av mode but it'll probably be f2.8 or f7...and that's it. DSLR has everything inbetween and beyond depending on the lens.

If you're up for changing lenses and carrying gear around then a DSLR is the way to go. But if you feel it's too much work and effort and just want larger images then the compact would suit you fine.
But remember, you'll outgrow your new compact at some point - you won't outgrow your DSLR kit. Sure, you may want to upgrade the body and keep your lenses but it'll probably keep you happier for longer.
My experience is that if you never print bigger than 6x4 then 2 megapixels is fine. If you want to crop your images (i.e. you just print small sections of the picture) then more resolution is good, the more the better in fact.


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