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Pansonic DMC FZ4 & the FZ5

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Old Thursday 2nd March 2006, 23:01   #1
JTF
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Pansonic DMC FZ4 & the FZ5

I have been comparing the Pansonic DMC FZ4 & the FZ5. Price for the FZ4 is $399.00 canadian and the FZ5 $549.00. Is there much difference in the two that would justify paying the $150 more for the FZ5. Main use is for wildlife/bird photography, the 12 x lense appears to be the same? Any comments or opinions would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old Friday 3rd March 2006, 06:56   #2
normjackson
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FZ4 is slightly stripped down version of FZ5. Differences as far as know :
1) No microphone on FZ4 hence no sound in movies
2) FZ4 is a 4MP camera as opposed to 5MP of FZ5
3) FZ4 has slightly smaller LCD : 1.5" 114000 pixel rather than 1.8" 130000 pixel
4) FZ4 only availabe in silver?
For use you state, suspect that difference in cost might be better put towards Olympus TCON-17 teleconverter.
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Old Friday 3rd March 2006, 14:43   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by normjackson
FZ4 is slightly stripped down version of FZ5. Differences as far as know :
1) No microphone on FZ4 hence no sound in movies
2) FZ4 is a 4MP camera as opposed to 5MP of FZ5
3) FZ4 has slightly smaller LCD : 1.5" 114000 pixel rather than 1.8" 130000 pixel
4) FZ4 only availabe in silver?
For use you state, suspect that difference in cost might be better put towards Olympus TCON-17 teleconverter.
Can the FZ5 take teleconverters? I was under the impression that you needed to do some DIY modifications before doing this - due to a plastic thread on the FZ5 rather than the metal one found on the FZ20?
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Old Friday 3rd March 2006, 20:20   #4
normjackson
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Good point Marc.

Should have mentioned this. My understanding is that problems attaching accessories to the plastic FZ5 adaptor is the same as was with FZ1 adapter : namely that the adapter has a 55mm female thread at front but also an unthreaded lip in front of this. The result is that there is some inconsistency in the security of attachments. With FZ1 I found a cheap Hama UV filter attached very securely to the unmodified adapter, a standard Hoya UV less so and a Hoya polarising hardly at all. The TCON-17 (I see from dpreview thread mention below) attaches with a 3/4 turn to the plastic FZ5 adaptor which is really not enough.

To attach a TCON-17 the simplest solution is to attach a filter to the adaptor that does attach well, then use the front metal thread of the filter to attach the TCON (the glass can be removed from the filter if it is only wanted as an adaptor).

The other solutions involve removing the unthreaded lip from the front of the adaptor; sanding it down with a circular movement on a flat abrasive surface being the easiest. Once this is done, the TCON can be attached directly to the plastic adaptor or, as many prefer, a filter is attached first to the adapter to offer a more robust metal thread to the TCON.

Those from the States anxious about this undertaking have been reassured that replacement adapters are available at only $14US. Look for part number VYQ3388 in left hand boxes :
http://www.pasc.panasonic.com/epartr/
Not sure of availability elsewhere. Maybe this gives the option of having an adapter permanently attached to TCON which can be added or removed using the adapter's bayonet fitting to camera.

Here is the dpreview thread I mentioned :
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=16535670

The more complicated DIY adaptation devised by Fred Moore (and a link to his instructions is given in thread) takes more off of the adapter which makes it unusable with the supplied lenshood, I think. But this somewhat more radical approach was really designed to allow wide angle converters to get as close as possible to the Panasonic lens and thereby hopefully reduce vignetting.
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Old Monday 17th April 2006, 10:17   #5
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Black pictures

Hi,

The question I have has nothing to do with birdphotograpy, but still, if the problem cannot be solved, I cannot take pictures of birds.
I'm encountering the following problem.
When I work with my FZ5 in P-mode, all my pics are black. When I press the button, before taking the picture, I can see the little thingy showing -2 - + 2, with the 0 in the center, but the pic is all black. Changing aperture value or shutter time does not solve the problem. I've taken the pics without flash inhouse.
Hope somebody can tell me what I am doing wrong.

Kind regards,
Geert
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Old Monday 17th April 2006, 17:53   #6
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Hi Geert.
Maybe you've set a minus EV value which would make your pictures darker. If you set the "Heart" or simple mode do they come out better? Accidentally leaving the flash up could mess up camera settings too. If you can't solve it, maybe could let us see the EXIF data on one of these photos?
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Old Tuesday 18th April 2006, 20:52   #7
gvenhuizen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by normjackson
Hi Geert.
Maybe you've set a minus EV value which would make your pictures darker. If you set the "Heart" or simple mode do they come out better? Accidentally leaving the flash up could mess up camera settings too. If you can't solve it, maybe could let us see the EXIF data on one of these photos?

Hi Norm,

Yes in 'simple mode' they do come out the way I expect. I have to try taking pics outside, inside it just may have been too dark. What are EXIF data and how/where do I read these?

Geert
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Old Wednesday 19th April 2006, 00:05   #8
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Here's an anwser to the "What is EXIF" question :
http://www.digicamhelp.com/what-is-exif/index.htm

For a Windows user, a freeware example of an image browser that displays EXIF info on your pictures:
http://www.faststone.org/FSViewerDetail.htm
And a program that's rather more dedicated to viewing and manipulating EXIF data :
http://www.friedemann-schmidt.com/software/exifer/

If in the same situation a photo in the Heart/simple mode looks OK and in the P mode it looks very dark, then the liklihood is that quite a large negative EV compensation value has been set (which gets overridden in the heart mode).
Not sure if the means of changing this is the same on FZ5 (best to check manual) but on ealier models, pushed top of the "rocker" on the back to select; then side arrows to increase or decrease the set value; then bottom of rocker to set new value.
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Old Tuesday 13th June 2006, 17:00   #9
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I'm just looking into getting a better camera, and the FZ5 is on my shortlist, anyone got any input that could swing me for or against this camera?
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Old Thursday 22nd June 2006, 21:03   #10
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The FZ-7 is $400.00 too, but has 6 MP. Other than MP's I am not sure what the dif. is between the three?
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Old Sunday 30th July 2006, 11:18   #11
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Dear Friend,
I own a Panasonic FZ20, but photos are not sharp as i operate it with 48 X zoom most of times, i am looking for a convertor which will enable me to enhance optical zoom from 12 x to 18 or more X. Hence which convertor a panasonic recommends DMWLTZ10 , but i understand Sigma & Tameron lens can also be put. Can any one guide me,Thanks Ajey India
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