The small sensor/ultrazoom/bridge etc thread

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It seems quite a few of us here have ultrazoom bridges and compacts in addition to our higher end kit... and there is no particular owners thread to discuss them. SLR exotic teles [and the V1/70-300CX and so on] top out around 800mm native, but I’m talking 1200-1800mm or even 2000-3000mm with the recent Nikon P series. Small sensors, smeary ISOs, imperfect detail... but great fun walkaround/glovebox/dogwalking/casual tools, and able to achieve the photographically impossible at times...

It struck me that rather than storming the ‘high end bridge’ thread, might it be sensible to have a separate owners thread for the ‘lower end huge zooms’? The FZ series, the P series, other compacts with ludicrous range, digiscoping etc?

Anyway, here’s a couple from the FZ82 for starters, all 1200-1800mm with EZ modes and Auto modes and all manner of other photographic sins applied :)

4B1B712E-82ED-4CFA-934C-C5C25B29B1C7.jpeg 16BF4833-2E62-49CF-BC51-FD1768B5E0D5.jpeg A464093C-D851-4DA2-8A08-61B681E5A692.jpeg
 
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Good idea just added a fz82 to my kit.
 
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danbroad
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Good idea just added a fz82 to my kit.
I’d be interested in the comparisons, briefly had a P900 but was chasing other goals at the time so it didn’t last long and I probably didn’t give it a chance. Likewise, I’d like to hear about P950 and P1000 experiences.
I mean, these things are slowish focus and low ISO tools, but I’m finding the FZ82 invaluable in other ways. If I’m walking the dog, or out for a jolly day with the kids, or just out for the day somewhere ..... something about the little FZ means I grab it on the off chance, and that’s something I wouldn’t necessarily do with the G80. As a result, I’ve got kingfisher pics from the weekend and kite pics from a few weeks ago that would’ve otherwise been stories to tell rather than pictures obtained...
They don’t compete on pure IQ - but then again, do they? Could I get a better shot of a kite 500 feet away with a D5 and 600/4 cropped to 1/10th of the frame? And would it be worth the extra ten grand? And even if I had it, would I have taken it out on the dog walk where I saw the bird at all? E95B4585-6831-477B-8370-01CD474E2392.jpeg
 
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danbroad
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Great photo, always liked the idea of IR on a cheapie. You'll have to let us know how to go about doing it!

if anyone has a better idea for the thread title to make it more inclusive or obvious, let me know. I'd sort of envisaged a "low end bridge" thread to go with the "high end bridge" thread, but not exclusively at the long end of the focal range and not just bridges ... just a sort of discussion/showcase thread for the fun stuff that isn't catered for by the other threads here on TP.

...thinking Panasonic FZ series, the Nikon P's and B's, TZ's, Sony HX's etc etc. I'd bet across the forum someone will have tried or owned/own one of these models, and it'd be a great useful resource to put discussions and samples in one place.

Anyone with a P1000? I am interested in seeing what you have as well. Places like DPreview are full of P1000 shots from across the world, but U.K. light isn't as good and so real world experiences of things like focus speed and accuracy, long end detail at U.K. ISO's etc...

...likewise, the FZ200/300 series with the constant 2.8. How useful in the real world do you find the extra couple of stops?
 
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Great photo, always liked the idea of IR on a cheapie. You'll have to let us know how to go about doing it!

if anyone has a better idea for the thread title to make it more inclusive or obvious, let me know. I'd sort of envisaged a "low end bridge" thread to go with the "high end bridge" thread, but not exclusively at the long end of the focal range and not just bridges ... just a sort of discussion/showcase thread for the fun stuff that isn't catered for by the other threads here on TP.

...thinking Panasonic FZ series, the Nikon P's and B's, TZ's, Sony HX's etc etc. I'd bet across the forum someone will have tried or owned/own one of these models, and it'd be a great useful resource to put discussions and samples in one place.

Anyone with a P1000? I am interested in seeing what you have as well. Places like DPreview are full of P1000 shots from across the world, but U.K. light isn't as good and so real world experiences of things like focus speed and accuracy, long end detail at U.K. ISO's etc...

...likewise, the FZ200/300 series with the constant 2.8. How useful in the real world do you find the extra couple of stops?
Maybe “Small sensor” in the title somewhere?
 
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danbroad
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I've rewritten it so many times...

the "low end" bridge camera thread? (But not just bridges, and there's nothing low end about your images? )
The '1/23rd" sensor" thread (other sensors are of course welcome... )
The small sensor/ultrazoom/bridge/compacts thread? :)

It's tougher than I thought
 
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Images from various generations of "superzoom" cameras.

Panasonic FZ40...

Absailing window cleaner 3 DSC-S40.jpg

Nikon S10...

Austrian police officer in the Zillertal S10 NIK_1082.jpg

Sony HX90...

Bathroom blinds reflected in cabinet mirror HX90 DSC00397.JPG

Fuji SL300...

Bus driver smiling at colleague SL300 DSCF3452.jpg

Panasonic TZ4...

Didcot cooling towers TZ4 1000529.JPG

Panasonic TZ40...

Frog in the garden TZ40 1020277.JPG

Panasonic TZ70...

Three men on bench outside Sidmouth Market TZ70 P1030382.JPG
 
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Great photo, always liked the idea of IR on a cheapie. You'll have to let us know how to go about doing it!

if anyone has a better idea for the thread title to make it more inclusive or obvious, let me know. I'd sort of envisaged a "low end bridge" thread to go with the "high end bridge" thread, but not exclusively at the long end of the focal range and not just bridges ... just a sort of discussion/showcase thread for the fun stuff that isn't catered for by the other threads here on TP.

...thinking Panasonic FZ series, the Nikon P's and B's, TZ's, Sony HX's etc etc. I'd bet across the forum someone will have tried or owned/own one of these models, and it'd be a great useful resource to put discussions and samples in one place.

Anyone with a P1000? I am interested in seeing what you have as well. Places like DPreview are full of P1000 shots from across the world, but U.K. light isn't as good and so real world experiences of things like focus speed and accuracy, long end detail at U.K. ISO's etc...

...likewise, the FZ200/300 series with the constant 2.8. How useful in the real world do you find the extra couple of stops?
ive still got a P1000 - it’s very good! I’ve done plenty of pics in the high end bride cameras thread.. will try and add some here!
 
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It has to be said if you want to chase ultimate IQ then these are not the cameras for you, if you just want to have fun taking pictures with the ability to go from wide angle to ultra telephoto with the push of a button they can do this and provide a lot of fun.

Nikon P900

original image

25986213354_7fc7c4657f_o.jpg

After editing

re edit 72.jpg
 
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Good idea for a thread...I too, thought about storming the "High End Bridge Camera" thread...but with my puny little tiny sensor FZ330, i probably wouldnt have been accepted;)
Ive been shooting with Panny FZ small sensor cameras for a decade now(along side other systems like - Nikon DX/FX, Nikon V1). Even now, i shoot with a Panny FZ330, an at the same time use my MFT Panny G80 together in a session. I do use close up filters with both systems though, an even when i want to go for macro images, i still use an old Panny FZ50, coupled to the Raynox 250/150's.
Ive owned quite a few of the Panny FZ range over the years(so i know a little about em) such as - FZ28/FZ38/FZ45/FZ150...an for the last year, ive been very happy with my FZ330.
These cameras do have their limitations, so as long as you shoot in good light, try not to go too far above ISO 100, then they can be a low budget, useful tool.
Just recently, ive been shooting roosting butterflies in low light conditions (after 8.00pm) so ive been dropping shutter speeds right down, an shooting at f/3.2 an f/2.8, but still keeping ISO at 100, with some surprisingly good images produced. But normally, i dont shoot below f/4 an 1/200.

I call the FZ330, my perfect Butterfly camera...it has a very useful touch screen, rapid AF, great battery life, whats not to like. I dont print my images (ever) i shoot jpeg, handheld, an 99% of my images are not cropped at all. Saying that, i can crop into my images, with good results, but i just try to get the image/composition right, without the need to crop. I only ever upload small image sizes to sites, if my image is not cropped, then uploaded, the image file will be just 20% of its full size.

Several images then, all shot with the FZ330, coupled to a Canon/Polaroid 500D close up filter.

Note- All my images are of wild UK creatures, very much alive an kicking...errrrrrrrrrrr an if they have wings, alive an flying!


Chalk Hill Blue Butterfly(male). Image is not cropped. Shot at f/5, 1/500, ISO 100, lens at 35.6mm. 7.30pm.

Chalk Hill Blue Butterfly (male). No cropping. by Tort Man, on Flickr


Female Chalk Hill Blue Butterfly. Image is not cropped. Shot at f/5, 1/640, ISO 100, lens at 50.2mm. 6.16pm.

Female Chalk Hill Blue Butterfly. No cropping. by Tort Man, on Flickr
 
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Another example of why i like the "tiny, puny" 12 megapixel sensor of the FZ330!!
Back in June, i was shooting images of Marbled White butterflies, it was close to 6.45pm, the sun had gone behind the clouds, an i had to shoot into the light.
Because of the conditions, i dropped the shutter speed down to 1/200, i also went from f/5 to f/4, the butterflies were back lit.

The result was, i ended up with one of my best butterfly images of 2020.
Another good thing about the FZ330, is electronic shutter...you can shoot fast, the AF will focus rapidly. The body is lightweight(even with the extra weight of the chunky close up filter) on the front of the lens, its still a lightweight set up...i shot this image one handed!

A pair of Marbled White butterflies. Image is not cropped. Shot at - f/4, 1/200, ISO 100, lens at 33.5mm. June 13th 2020, 6.41pm.

Female and male Marbled White Butterflies (back lit). No cropping. by Tort Man, on Flickr

Even though i always shoot in Jpeg, i do have to apply some form of editing/PP, but i cant push the editing too far, otherwise the final image will suffer. Generally, i spend less than a couple of minutes editing (unless i need to clone) so, its basic stuff, such as - colour balance, saturation, contrast, light/dark etc. just some small adjustments, depending on whats required.
Overall, im trying to display my images, just as i saw them, when i shot them, at that time.
I see a hell of a lot of wildlife images overcooked/oversaturated/oversharpened etc etc. This is something i try to avoid, if anything, i probably dial back contrast/saturation a little too much sometimes. The SOOC images will not be that far from my edited images, it will be a subtle change overall.
So back to the image, as with all my butterfly images(closed or open wings) im trying to get as much of the subject in focus(whilst keeping a clear uncluttered background). For f/4, an 2 butterflies across the frame, the FZ330 did real good!

Male on left, female on the right. Cheers Paul.
 
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danbroad
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So many great shots... light and subject always before sensor, and thanks for the info on the FZ330 Paul. I recently went from a Sony A7 to a MFT setup because I was hitting a brick wall on affordable and smaller lenses.. I could get what I wanted far more easily in MFT. But then the little FZ82 came up for a song and I figured I'd give it a whirl, flip it if I didn't like it.. and here I am. A sort of rebellion against the march of the FF sensor!
I stopped looking at the gear and started looking at myself... that good light days inspire me to go take pictures [fairweather photography?], that I value grab and go' kit with minimal fuss, the dream of solo photo trips vs. the reality of dogs and kids and impatient other halves :-], that my photo output was for phone screens, composite photobooks and Flickr... and the FZ has given me plenty of reach beyond any SLR lens, and IQ that looks good at those outputs, I print plenty but it's all under 6x4's these days.
I'm really drawn to the idea of the FZ330, with its 2.8 I could almost even see the big Panny prime hardly getting a look in in the darker months. The eye opener for me was finally getting some real reach, that kite photo for example would have been a black dot in a blue patch with even my most expensive kit, and I've had so many days from hides where I enjoyed the day and was disappointedly the photos because I just couldn't get in far enough. Fieldcraft is impossible on an RSPB reserve, for example - everyone knows to get closer, but on tended or commercial sites that's a no no.

If we take photographs for the pleasure of displaying them to others, then using the 'ooh/wow responses' measure, the FZ has been my most successful camera to date!
 
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No problems Dan, if i can offer some advice on the FZ330, then its all good (although ive only been shooting with it for just a year) so my experience might be limited.

I suppose you could run the FZ330 along side your FZ82, use the massive zoom/reach of the FZ82 for birding, an use an FZ330 for other stuff, that might require that f/2.8...but if it was me, i doubt i would own both those cameras. Saying that, they are cheap enough to buy 2ndhand. I bought my FZ330 2ndhand for just under £200, it was like new, with less than 500 clicks, so i drove the 100 mile round trip for it, because at that real low price, it was worth the drive!

FZ330 does macro quite well too, ive tried it with both 250/150 Raynox, an ive even stacked the Raynox together. For macro shots, i use max f/8, an i also use on board camera flash, with homemade pringles Diffuser.

Some examples of FZ330 macro. Images are not cropped, Raynox 250 an 150 stacked, ISO always set at 100. Shooting at f/8.
I do like to shoot Jumping Spiders, early in the year (before the Butterflies start to emerge!).

Female adult Zebra Jumping Spider.
Jumping Zebra Spider (Salticidae) Female. Uncropped. (garden photo) 12th April 2020 by Testudo Man, on Flickr

Male adult Zebra Jumping Spider.
Zebra Jumping Spider (male). Salticus scenicus. by Tort Man, on Flickr
 

Ajophotog

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No problems Dan, if i can offer some advice on the FZ330, then its all good (although ive only been shooting with it for just a year) so my experience might be limited.

I suppose you could run the FZ330 along side your FZ82, use the massive zoom/reach of the FZ82 for birding, an use an FZ330 for other stuff, that might require that f/2.8...but if it was me, i doubt i would own both those cameras. Saying that, they are cheap enough to buy 2ndhand. I bought my FZ330 2ndhand for just under £200, it was like new, with less than 500 clicks, so i drove the 100 mile round trip for it, because at that real low price, it was worth the drive!

FZ330 does macro quite well too, ive tried it with both 250/150 Raynox, an ive even stacked the Raynox together. For macro shots, i use max f/8, an i also use on board camera flash, with homemade pringles Diffuser.

Some examples of FZ330 macro. Images are not cropped, Raynox 250 an 150 stacked, ISO always set at 100. Shooting at f/8.
I do like to shoot Jumping Spiders, early in the year (before the Butterflies start to emerge!).

Female adult Zebra Jumping Spider.
Jumping Zebra Spider (Salticidae) Female. Uncropped. (garden photo) 12th April 2020 by Testudo Man, on Flickr

Male adult Zebra Jumping Spider.
Zebra Jumping Spider (male). Salticus scenicus. by Tort Man, on Flickr
Superb photos Paul, I have been taken macro photos with the fz series since I first bought my FZ8 quite a few years ago now. That was a great little camera for macro and still has a life in my sons hands since I converted it to Infrared. I hate to think how many photos I have been taken with that little camera and it is still going strong.
Here is one from back in the day (2008).

Syritta pipens
by Ajophotog, on ipernity
 
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Superb photos Paul, I have been taken macro photos with the fz series since I first bought my FZ8 quite a few years ago now. That was a great little camera for macro and still has a life in my sons hands since I converted it to Infrared. I hate to think how many photos I have been taken with that little camera and it is still going strong.
Here is one from back in the day (2008).

Syritta pipens
by Ajophotog, on ipernity
Cheers for that Alby.
That is a cracking shot of a Hoverfly, just goes to show what these FZ cameras can do.
Looks like you have a few more FZ years experience than me! I got my 1st FZ camera a decade ago. I bought the FZ28, i was seduced by its 18x optical zoom!
But way back then i should have bought the FZ50, but i was into birding, so the FZ50's 12x zoom was less than the 18X zoom of the FZ28! Another neat trick with the FZ's was if you lowered the megapixels, you got at lot more zoom too!

Anyway, 5 years ago, i finally got my hands on the legend that is FZ50, an i still use that camera for macro today. I know its only 10 megapixels, an it has a tiny screen/monitor...mines well worn, with all the hand grip rubber missing etc, but it still works good!

Several images shot with the FZ50/Raynox 250/Pringles diffuser. Single images (ive never stacked images to date). Cheers Paul.

Wasp.
Wasp, garden photo (uncropped). 7th-August-2017. by Testudo Man, on Flickr

Solitary Bee (wet from the rain).
Solitary Bee, after the rain! garden photo.(uncropped). 20th-July-2017. by Testudo Man, on Flickr

Garden Spider, preying on a White Butterfly.
Female Garden Spider with prey("White" Butterfly) uncropped. garden photo. 23rd-September-2017. by Testudo Man, on Flickr

Red Mason Bee.
Red Mason Bee, on a closed Daisy(uncropped) garden photo. 28th-April-2018. by Testudo Man, on Flickr
 

Ajophotog

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Cheers for that Alby.
That is a cracking shot of a Hoverfly, just goes to show what these FZ cameras can do.
Looks like you have a few more FZ years experience than me! I got my 1st FZ camera a decade ago. I bought the FZ28, i was seduced by its 18x optical zoom!
But way back then i should have bought the FZ50, but i was into birding, so the FZ50's 12x zoom was less than the 18X zoom of the FZ28! Another neat trick with the FZ's was if you lowered the megapixels, you got at lot more zoom too!

Anyway, 5 years ago, i finally got my hands on the legend that is FZ50, an i still use that camera for macro today. I know its only 10 megapixels, an it has a tiny screen/monitor...mines well worn, with all the hand grip rubber missing etc, but it still works good!

Several images shot with the FZ50/Raynox 250/Pringles diffuser. Single images (ive never stacked images to date). Cheers Paul.

Wasp.
Wasp, garden photo (uncropped). 7th-August-2017. by Testudo Man, on Flickr

Solitary Bee (wet from the rain).
Solitary Bee, after the rain! garden photo.(uncropped). 20th-July-2017. by Testudo Man, on Flickr

Garden Spider, preying on a White Butterfly.
Female Garden Spider with prey("White" Butterfly) uncropped. garden photo. 23rd-September-2017. by Testudo Man, on Flickr

Red Mason Bee.
Red Mason Bee, on a closed Daisy(uncropped) garden photo. 28th-April-2018. by Testudo Man, on Flickr
Lovely shots Paul, l bought a panny fz50 a couple of months ago for £26. Absolute bargain and a very capable camera.
 
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Meike m4/3 flash on FZ82, what made me question if it would work i dont know,i guess it should be obvious but a couple of rubbish subject test images to show it does, the flash i think may need better diffusion but i can work on that.

P1120333.jpg

P1120334.jpg
 

Ajophotog

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Thanks, its the Panasonic FZ82
Cheers Mike, I have thought about getting the fz82 myself then I think the fz330 and I go through this circle of thinking until I think I will stick with what I already have. lol One day I will make my mind up and bite the bullet.
 
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Cheers Mike, I have thought about getting the fz82 myself then I think the fz330 and I go through this circle of thinking until I think I will stick with what I already have. lol One day I will make my mind up and bite the bullet.
The 330 would be of interest to me but i want the long zoom for small birds in the sub 50ft range
 
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