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Thread: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

  1. #1
    Stimpy_7
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    Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Hello DPI Forum,

    Iíve been lurking around here for some time now, but this is my first post so please do be kind!

    Firstly, I am brand new to this hobby of photography. It is always something that Iíve been interested in, Iíve even had a play with an old skool SLR from time to time, but Iím practically a total novice.

    Iíve done all the reading and research I can, but Iím ultimately stuck in a bit of a rut in regards to what camera I should be buying myself. This is where I need your advice!

    The 2 cameraís I have narrowed this down too are the Panasonic Lumix G1 and the Panasonic DMC LX3. I know my two choices are totally different beasts but I am aiming to go travelling in August, so thereís a niggle at the back of mind that even the G1 will be too big to lug around. This is where the LX3 looks appealingÖ

    My question is, is it worth me getting the G1, which will give me greater creative versatility in the future. Or, shall I buy the LX3 for its portability, but run the risk or limiting myself creativelyÖ.

    I know this is a slightly unfair comparison, but I was just wondering what you guys would do if you were in my position? Would I find it hard to learn the basics on a LX3? Would I be limited as much as I think I would?

    Or is it simply a case that they are 2 different cameraís for 2 different jobsÖ

    Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated and thank you for taking the time to read my monster post

    Adam

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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Welcome to the forum!!!

    If I were traveling and didn't want the bulk of the G1, for me the LX3, while an excellent camera, would not be my other choice. The Panasonic TZ series would be my choice. They just announced a new version TZ7/ZS3 (Europe/US). These camera aren't much bigger than the LX3 but to me have a much more useful zoom range for a travel camera. The caveats here are the smaller sensor and lack of manual controls and a slower lens. I've used the TZ3 extensively and love that camera. If you like to use manual controls, you will need to spend some time with the TZ's to learn them well and be able to understand how to get the most out of them with less control.

    I also own the previous version of the LX3 wrapped in Leica garb the d-lux3.
    Last edited by Terry; 17th February 2009 at 08:51.

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    Senior Member Brian Mosley's Avatar
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Hi Adam, I think Terry's advice is sound - check out the TZ7/ZS3 here.

    Alternatively, see if you can get a twin lens E-410 kit... it's the world's most compact DSLR and may be quite a bit cheaper than the G1.

    Good luck!

    Kind Regards

    Brian

  4. #4
    Stimpy_7
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Thanks for the advice guys, i'll definately look into the opitions you suggested...

    Do you think the G1 might be a slight waste of money then? I have a bit of cash to play with so i'm ideally looking for something that is going to last me a while.

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    Super Moderator Cindy Flood's Avatar
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    If you are looking for room to grow, I would go with the G1 or Oly 420 with the kit zooms. It will leave you room to "grow". Just know that a digital workflow will have growing pains.
    Since you have used an SLR in the past, I think the LX3 (as your only camera) will leave you wanting.
    I carry my G1 or M8 with me wherever I go. Get a nice little camera bag and enjoy.

  6. #6
    Stimpy_7
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    I hadn't looked into the Oly 410/420, looks as though I can save a bit of cash compared to the G1 (although I had a play with one today and it is amazing!). I think you are right though, i think i'd just end up buying a 'proper' SLR after a while anyway.

    Do you think there will be a big difference in quality between the olympus' and the G1?

    The 410 was recently available for £160 in the uk, quite a bargain.....

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    Senior Member back alley's Avatar
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    the g1 is very easy to carry everywhere, has lots of manual, semi auto and no brainer options. and the kit lens is a near perfect all day kinda lens, just needed to be a bit faster.

    joe

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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Quote Originally Posted by Stimpy_7 View Post

    Do you think there will be a big difference in quality between the olympus' and the G1?

    The 410 was recently available for £160 in the uk, quite a bargain.....
    There are good reasons why the E410 is so cheap .... old technology.
    The E420 is a much better bet - same JPG quality & LCD as the E520, and with many more features to boot. The E4XX may not even survive this year ... who knows.

    The G1 kit with 14-45 has outstanding IQ - unless you really need the OVF, it worth a good look, especially now that new deals are around. m 4/3 is where the smart money may well be going.

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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Just to be clear about my post, I was not recommending against the G1 but giving an option other than the LX3 if the G1 is not chosen.

    I really don't know the full range of Oly lenses and what you would ultimately want on the camera (on the telephoto end) but I do value the image stabilization and remember with the Oly 4 series you don't get it. So, if I was keeping the interchangeable lens system and wanted small, I do like the fact that in addition to OIS you also get the tilt and swivel screen.

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    Super Moderator Cindy Flood's Avatar
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Quote Originally Posted by TEBnewyork View Post
    Just to be clear about my post, I was not recommending against the G1 but giving an option other than the LX3 if the G1 is not chosen.

    I really don't know the full range of Oly lenses and what you would ultimately want on the camera (on the telephoto end) but I do value the image stabilization and remember with the Oly 4 series you don't get it. So, if I was keeping the interchangeable lens system and wanted small, I do like the fact that in addition to OIS you also get the tilt and swivel screen.
    Those are really good and valid points, Terry. Image Stabilization is a big plus, especially when you are just new to a system.

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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    I was in a similar situation to yours and I ended up choosing the LX-3 (D-Lux 4 version) for now. It's a great all around or travel camera IMO as long as you realize and recognize the limitations it possesses. If you want a longer zoom the TZ series certainly is a good choice in a compact option as is the Ricoh GX200 (from the results I've seen.)

    The G1 is almost like comparing apples to oranges in a sense. It's a totally different animal (although the costs are somewhat similar in some ways) but like everyone says the kit lens covers the majority of the general shooting range for most people. The camera isn't really pocketable but it's a more "future proof" solution. I don't think you could go wrong with any of the choices that you mentioned so it really all comes down to what you are personally more comfortable with using while on vacation. A great option, if you could swing it, would be to try out all of them and keep the one that works best for you.
    Sony Visible Light & IR Photographer
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  12. #12
    Stimpy_7
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Thanks so much for all the replys guys, it's really appreciated.

    Definiately given me a bit to think about.... I am leaning towards the G1 I think. Although financially the E420 might make a bit more sense. Looking at the prices here in the UK there is a chance I could get both the E420 (second hand) and the LX3 for the price of the G1, give or take a few pounds. Or even get the E420 and save a bit of cash for the travels....

    Do you think that the price increase for the G1 is justified over the E420? Is Image Stabilization going to be a deal breaker.? Obviously the screen tilt and swivel screen is a lovely edition but am I simply paying a premium for new tech that as a novice i might not appreciate?

    Obviously the idea of buying into old or dying tech is something that borhers me too...

    Thanks once again, i'm really quite impressed with this forum!

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    Senior Member Brian Mosley's Avatar
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Quote Originally Posted by rich s View Post
    There are good reasons why the E410 is so cheap .... old technology.
    The E420 is a much better bet - same JPG quality & LCD as the E520, and with many more features to boot. The E4XX may not even survive this year ... who knows.
    Rich, Adam is looking for a camera to travel with, and use to take photographs - not a bleeding edge status symbol.

    When I realised that many of my friends were saving a fortune by purchasing previous generation models I even gave it a name... Lagging edge wisdom

    The E-410 is superb value for money - and will accept all 4/3rds lenses so if you find you're really enjoying learning your photography, you can add some seriously capable lenses... like the 9-18mm for UWA and 50mm f2 for macro/portraits.

    If you become obsessed with pixel peeping, shoot RAW and use a free RAW converter like Raw Therapee... you will find that the E-410 is no less capable than the E-420.

    Hope that makes sense, spend your G1 budget on an E-410 + 9-18 for travelling

    p.s. you won't miss IS if you learn good technique... and you can upgrade to a more serious 4/3rds body in due course (always consider the recently superseded model for the very best vfm).

    p.p.s. remember, when you're choosing a system - consider the quality and value of the lenses first... good lenses will outlast several generations of camera body.

    p.p.s. there's an online reference to optimising the E-410/E-510 jpeg in camera settings to get the very best image quality by Andrej Wrotniak here.

    Kind Regards

    Brian
    Last edited by Brian Mosley; 18th February 2009 at 01:40.

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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Brian, you can actually get an E420 very reasonably if you look around, and I would never advise getting an E410 if the E420 is there for the having for noy much more ££ with its much improved image quality, features etc.

    The E420 I bought for my daughter was s/h and absolutely like new for example. Why get an E410 only to want to sell it for peanuts in 9 months having been frustrated by the blown highlights & lack of IS for example?!

    Cameras aren't "just" for travel - they are for all uses, and with the added features of G1 esp. IS with the kit lenses, might will provide a far broader range of uses than an outdated E410 might. That's all I'm saying, but then it depends on the budget the OP has available and the direction he sees his photography & interests developing.

    Rich

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    Senior Member Rawfa's Avatar
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Canon has just launched a camera that could be a bit better than the new Panasonics if you are looking for full control. It's the SX200 IS, which has the same massive 300mm zoom as the pana (except with a 28mm instead of a 25mm) BUT it has full manual control. Plus the Canon is 50$ cheaper . Both shoot HD video, which might be a bonus if you're traveling. I'm looking forward to seeing a comparison.
    P.S - I tend to make around 10 trips per year and I really have learned to love the freedom that a small compact can give you. My motto if "if you have to carry it on a bag it's not for me".

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    Senior Member Brian Mosley's Avatar
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Quote Originally Posted by rich s View Post
    Brian, you can actually get an E420 very reasonably if you look around, and I would never advise getting an E410 if the E420 is there for the having for noy much more ££ with its much improved image quality, features etc.

    The E420 I bought for my daughter was s/h and absolutely like new for example. Why get an E410 only to want to sell it for peanuts in 9 months having been frustrated by the blown highlights & lack of IS for example?!

    Cameras aren't "just" for travel - they are for all uses, and with the added features of G1 esp. IS with the kit lenses, might will provide a far broader range of uses than an outdated E410 might. That's all I'm saying, but then it depends on the budget the OP has available and the direction he sees his photography & interests developing.

    Rich
    Hi Rich, the E-420 does not offer a significant improvement in image quality - and the enhancements are largely cosmetic.

    As for blown highlights - check the Wrotniak site for jpeg settings, shoot RAW and / or use an ND graduated filter. Same advice goes for the E-420 - learn how to avoid blown highlights as a photographer.

    It's his choice - but my advice would be to save on the body and invest in a better quality lens.

    Kind Regards

    Brian

  17. #17
    Stimpy_7
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Thanks for your thoughts everyone, although I now have even more options! Not great for me as i'm stupidly indecisive at the best times...

    To be honest if i'm going down the DSLR route it might be best to opt for the E410/E420 as although i'm passionate about photography, i'm not certain i should be blowing £500+ on a hobby that i'm just starting is the best move. Size was my primary concern with the DSLR's, so knowing that there is a cheaper small alternative is a plus! That was the major draw of the G1.

    I guess I won't really know if a E410 or G1 will be a burden to carry until i get out and about with it.

    As HiredArm right points out, I could ideally do with having a play with both then decide how I get on. This is quite difficult to do though...

    Also, thank you for the link Rawfa, I don't have to make my decision right this second so i might wait to see the reviews on the SX200 IS

    Adam

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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Quote Originally Posted by Stimpy_7 View Post
    Hello DPI Forum,

    Firstly, I am brand new to this hobby of photography. It is always something that I’ve been interested in, I’ve even had a play with an old skool SLR from time to time, but I’m practically a total novice.

    The 2 camera’s I have narrowed this down too are the Panasonic Lumix G1 and the Panasonic DMC LX3. I know my two choices are totally different beasts but I am aiming to go travelling in August, so there’s a niggle at the back of mind that even the G1 will be too big to lug around. This is where the LX3 looks appealing…

    Adam
    Adam:

    The LX3 is really not as good beginner camera, while the G1 might be. I think you have gottten many good ideas in this thread but I want to ad a few things about the LX3.

    Most beginners do not have a need for a very wide lens and want more telephoto. I think you will be disappointed with the LX3 lens. Also, the LX3 is a photographers tool, and that's where it gets it rep. If you aren't going to use the high end manual capabilities, you are only stuck with it's few flaws: odd non pocketable size, lens cap that must be dealt with (most tiny cameras don't have this), no veiwfinder, small sensor.

    The G1, or even Oly 4XX or Canon Rebel will all give you more to playwith and the G1 will do it in the smallest package.

    Tom

  19. #19
    Stimpy_7
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    Re: Is the G1 for me? Advice please.. :)

    Thanks Tom,

    Yes I think you are right, I will be definitely be looking at getting either the Oly 4xx or the G1 having had a good think about it. I'm pretty sure i will be left wanting if I pick up any P&S. I will just have to accept the bulk for what i will gain in return...

    Thanks to everyone that has contributed, I've recieved some really solid advice here.

    Cheers

    Adam

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