Zoom Point & Shoots
Old 11-04-2016   #1
wildmuskellunge
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Zoom Point & Shoots

I love handling and framing with P&S cameras with zoom lenses. However, I have been disappointed by the results of the cameras I have been using. Are there any amazing P&S with zoom lenses that I'm missing?

I have a Fuji DL Super Mini Zoom and an Olympus Stylus Epic Zoom 80.
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Old 11-04-2016   #2
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I like the results from the Konica Z-Up 80 RC. Not a zoom camera, but also very good is the Nikon TW2AF (dual focus 35 and 70mm).
The Olympus Superzoom 120 is another one I like.
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Old 11-04-2016   #3
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The Fuji ZoomDate f2.8 (a.k.a. Silvi) still is a favourite of mine - a 24-50mm zoom range is much more convenient than the very slow long lenses on most other zoom compacts. Apart from that, somehow I keep returning to the Olympus mju::V - gave it away twice, only to purchase it again.
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Old 11-04-2016   #4
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Contax TVS I, II, III

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Old 11-04-2016   #5
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Old 11-04-2016   #6
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I like very much what I get from my Rollei Prego 90. Ive tried the Prego 140, but the lens in the 90 (Schneider Variogon 28-90) is really a better performer by many kilometers (or miles)
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Old 11-04-2016   #7
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Canon Sureshot Z135. Not the prettiest thing out there but a Razor sharp lens with a good zoom range.

Otherwise the Sureshot Classic 120 is also a very good camera very classy polished metal looks that could easily be mistaken for a modern digital.
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Old 11-04-2016   #8
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Pentax Espio 24EW is nice, and wider than most. All of the IQZoom/Espio cameras are quite good.

The Konica Lexio 70 has a nice 28-70mm range, but the camera can be a little fragile.

But the best zoom lens P&S that I have ever used is the Vivitar Tec 155. Manual zoom Series 1 lens on a point and shoot. It was also sold under the Panasonic brand, but I do not remember the model number.

Also, the massive Canon Zoom XL has an SLR-quality zoom lens, but it is bigger and heavier than most SLR cameras. The SK optics on the Samsung ECX line are exceptional, as are they on the Rollei Prego cameras.
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Old 11-04-2016   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sevo View Post
The Fuji ZoomDate f2.8 (a.k.a. Silvi) still is a favourite of mine - a 24-50mm zoom range is much more convenient than the very slow long lenses on most other zoom compacts. Apart from that, somehow I keep returning to the Olympus mju::V - gave it away twice, only to purchase it again.
Is there another model name for the mju::V? I rather liked how the mju:ii 80 handled.
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Old 11-05-2016   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wildmuskellunge View Post
Is there another model name for the mju::V? I rather liked how the mju:ii 80 handled.
Hi,

The instruction manual lists three names on the cover:-

μ[mju:]-V

Stylus Select 105

μ METAL

and gives instructions for the date version so QD might just be added to the variations.

Regards, David
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Old 11-05-2016   #11
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Originally Posted by wildmuskellunge View Post
Is there another model name for the mju::V? I rather liked how the mju:ii 80 handled.
The US name may have been Stylus Select 105. It was introduced in 2002, among the last film mjus ever made (the final mju:III was released half a year later), so its local availability will depend on the degree to which digital had taken over. The UK in particular obviously received more than the local market could absorb - I bought two out of three as NOS from ebay UK sellers, for prices below 15€...
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Old 11-05-2016   #12
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I heard that MJU 100 is really nice performer. Another good camera is Leica CM zoom or Minilux Zoom , both fitted with Vario elmar 35-70mm
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Old 11-08-2016   #13
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It is good comparison you link to there. I dont have any of these three but the TVS Digital.

I read up on these three film TVS compacts some months ago and my general impression is that TVSII seems to be the best of them.
TVSII is said to have better, brighter viewfinder than TVSI and it still used the same zoomlens as the original TVS but have a built in automatic lenscap and at least I think that you can still use the usual lenscap for it as a complement if you would like to do so.

There is at least three, to me disadvantages, with the zoom in the newest of them, the TVSIII, which you should be aware when you look at these three.
TVSI and TVSII Vario Sonnar T* 28~56 F/3.5~6.5 (6 elements, 6 groups)
TVSIII Vario Sonnar T* 30~60mm F/3.7~6.7 (6 elements, 5 groups)

As you can see the TVSIII is only 6 elements in 5 groups compared to 6 elements in 6 groups for TVSI and II.
Further on the TVSIII have marginally slower widest aperture at each end of the zoom.
The TVSIII zoom is a 30mm wide at the wide end but not 28mm compared to TVSI and II. However it have just a little better reach, 60mm instead of 56mm.

One question about TVS film compacts here. Do the flash always need to charge up, even when set to Off in startup, (if that setting is available) on a first turn-on when you turn on the camera?
My TVS Digital is like that and it takes a whole 8 secs to charge the flash capacitor from zero to full so that I can take a picture even though the flash is set to Off in startup.
I see that flash recycle times for TVSI, II and III is 4 respectively 6 seconds.
Like the TVS Digital it seems like these three film compacts also are designed by Zeiss/Contax and manufactured by Kyocera.
Further on the two other Contax digital cameras I have i4R and U4R have the same "problem" as TVS Digital.

The only way around that I've found is to turn on the camera some time to let it charge up the flash, before, if you know that you may soon face an photo opportunity. Nobody wants to miss a good picture due to something like a low startup. That and the AF-screen freeze is two things which I not like very much on an otherwise very good digital compact which otherwise also have a good and intuitive user interface.
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Old 11-08-2016   #14
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I've got an Olympus Stylus Epic Zoom 80 that is very handy, and the picture quality isn't bad. The metering is always perfect, and sometimes the resolution is quite good. It might do for you.

Scott
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Old 11-09-2016   #15
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Hi,

Most of the P&S's with zooms are OK. The real problem is the usual one, meaning they are all old and second-hand.

So hunt for them, don't pay a lot* and test with a film.

I've had one or two of the posher and dearer ones and was disappointed. So I'll offer a little advice and that is don't expect much if the tele end is more than 100mm as at that point they are wide open at f/11 or thereabouts. 28 to 85 or 90 can cover a wide range of situations and there's some great cameras out there. I'd also be careful about the metering, some offer centre weighted which is usually needed enough to justify the search or else they offer +1½ or +2 EV which is as useful.

And always open the battery compartment to check for corrosion. That is the main or most common problem with the duds.

Regards, David

* An exception the Leica C3, well worth chasing and good luck needed as it's all electronic.

Last edited by David Hughes : 11-09-2016 at 02:35. Reason: Comment on the C3
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Old 11-09-2016   #16
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I'm a fan of the Contax TVS cameras.
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Old 11-09-2016   #17
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Hi,

There's a Nikon called something like the 90S One Touch that was introduced this century and so would probably be the youngest P&S you can buy.

And, another minor point, look at the batteries the things take. Some take those expensive 6v ones and others two 3v but best of all take one 3v (or two AA's which some would say was better still but they would be rather large and old).

Regards, David
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Old 11-09-2016   #18
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I remember a P&S that had a manual zoom that looked really interesting way back than. Can't remember if it was Nikon or Vivitar Series-1. Everyone went power-zoom so it didn't last long if I remember right. I still don't feel comfortable with a power zoom, but that's me.

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Old 11-09-2016   #19
wildmuskellunge
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brennanphotoguy View Post
I'm a fan of the Contax TVS cameras.
If I remember correctly, the TVS has auto flash, or rather you have to turn the flash off every time you want to take a picture... is that not true?
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Old 11-09-2016   #20
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I own both the Pentax Espio 24EW and the Rollei Prego 90. The Pentax zoom is 24-105mm. I bought it because it went down to 24mm.
I got the Rollei first. It zooms 28-90mm. Some have a Schneider Variogon lens. Others have a Rollei Phototechnic VarioApogon lens. I have no idea which lens might be better. Anyway, this camera has more program and auto settings than any other camera I've ever seen. Some, I'm sure, are unique to this camera. Several you might never use; however, the time lapse mode with intervals settable up to one hour is found on very few cameras and would be quite valuable if you needed it. You can check all these specs out on Google.
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Old 11-09-2016   #21
sevo
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Some have a Schneider Variogon lens. Others have a Rollei Phototechnic VarioApogon lens. I have no idea which lens might be better.
They might be the same - Rollei and its associates often changed hands, and with each owner, different branding rules applied. IIRC the Prego 90 was made (or at any rate distributed) by Samsung (then owner of Rollei), and the lens was made (or branded) by the then Korean Samsung-Schneider joint venture, which eventually reverted to Samsung only, along with Samsung divesting itself of Rollei as well. At any rate, after that point, Rollei and Schneider had separate owners, which may have prompted a renaming from Schneider to Rollei (a renaming to Samsung on a camera touted with vague hints of a German origin would have been damaging to its sales).
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Old 11-09-2016   #22
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Years, I heard nothing but raves for the huge Olympus IS-3. I had a boss 15 years ago that had one and loved it. I don't own one, so I have no direct experience with it... only hearsay.



Hmmm... I wonder how much they are on eBay?

Scott
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Last edited by skucera : 11-09-2016 at 20:27. Reason: Added a picture for the absurdity of its form factor
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Old 11-10-2016   #23
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Originally Posted by skucera View Post
Years, I heard nothing but raves for the huge Olympus IS-3. I had a boss 15 years ago that had one and loved it. I don't own one, so I have no direct experience with it... only hearsay.



Hmmm... I wonder how much they are on eBay?

Scott
Hi,

I think that is what we call an iS-000 over here; if it is them I picked one up a few years ago and was very impressed. I use it regularly, just a couple of weeks ago, f'instance.

I'd be quite happy to own just two cameras and this would be one of them and the other a small P&S with some over rides and a prime lens.

The ED lens is very good, covers a usable range (and there's a wide angle supplementary if you need it). Although it's a film SLR it is very simple to use as it's like a good digital SLR with a wide choice of modes (M, P, A and S) with spot metering, a pop-up flash and a separate dedicated flash and so on. In other words, Olympus's usual practical design.

Also the manual that came with it is brilliant; almost a book about photography.

As for prices, they are almost giving them away over here as it's an oddball by most idiots' standards. Say £10 for a good one and £20 for one with all the trimmings on ebay.

Regards, David

PS (EDIT) I would have called this a SLR not a P&S.
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Old 11-14-2016   #24
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Hi,

Not really bumping this but here's a long article about the iS series:-

http://esif.world-traveller.org/om-s.../is-series.htm

BTW, I mentioned being happy with two cameras and this being one of them. The other would be the Contax Tix which (alas) is APS but is almost perfect as small pocket cameras with prime lenses go, and one or two of them go the extra mile.

And, yes, I realise they are both film.

Regards, David
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Old 11-14-2016   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillBingham2 View Post
I remember a P&S that had a manual zoom that looked really interesting way back than. Can't remember if it was Nikon or Vivitar Series-1. Everyone went power-zoom so it didn't last long if I remember right. I still don't feel comfortable with a power zoom, but that's me.

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Old 11-14-2016   #26
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Originally Posted by skucera View Post
Years, I heard nothing but raves for the huge Olympus IS-3. I had a boss 15 years ago that had one and loved it. I don't own one, so I have no direct experience with it... only hearsay.



Hmmm... I wonder how much they are on eBay?

Scott
Quote:
Originally Posted by David Hughes View Post
Hi,

I think that is what we call an iS-000 over here; if it is them I picked one up a few years ago and was very impressed. I use it regularly, just a couple of weeks ago, f'instance.

I'd be quite happy to own just two cameras and this would be one of them and the other a small P&S with some over rides and a prime lens.

The ED lens is very good, covers a usable range (and there's a wide angle supplementary if you need it). Although it's a film SLR it is very simple to use as it's like a good digital SLR with a wide choice of modes (M, P, A and S) with spot metering, a pop-up flash and a separate dedicated flash and so on. In other words, Olympus's usual practical design.

Also the manual that came with it is brilliant; almost a book about photography.

As for prices, they are almost giving them away over here as it's an oddball by most idiots' standards. Say £10 for a good one and £20 for one with all the trimmings on ebay.

Regards, David

PS (EDIT) I would have called this a SLR not a P&S.
Just now resurrecting our specimen (birthday present for wife in 1999(?). First roll in progress...
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Old 11-14-2016   #27
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I ended up getting an IS-3dlx off of eBay, and it arrived today. It's clean, and came to life with new batteries. I loaded a roll of film, so we'll see what it does.

David is right... this thing is an SLR. It's also much bigger than I remember. My boss may have had one of the smaller but similar models that Olympus sold back in the late Nineties. It also offers full manual operation, though the controls are utterly unique to do it. I've got to RTFM now....

[Edit: Oh, it was $10 + s&h.]

Scott
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Last edited by skucera : 11-14-2016 at 19:28. Reason: Added the price
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Old 11-15-2016   #28
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Oh dear, this is proving to be an expensive thread for others. Apologies for that but - if it's any consolation - the Fuji X100 etc threads turned out to be expensive for me...

Anyway, I hope you are happy with them. It's an easy beast to master; once you've RTFM.

EDIT:- Having RTFM, what did you think of it? I like it very much as it gives you a lot more detail and so on than other manuals.

Regards, David
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Old 11-15-2016   #29
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Vivitar Tec 155.
Hi,

I guess the digital version would be the Leica Digilux-2.

Regards, David
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Old 11-15-2016   #30
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I ended up getting an IS-3dlx off of eBay, and it arrived today. It's clean, and came to life with new batteries. I loaded a roll of film, so we'll see what it does.

David is right... this thing is an SLR. It's also much bigger than I remember. My boss may have had one of the smaller but similar models that Olympus sold back in the late Nineties. It also offers full manual operation, though the controls are utterly unique to do it. I've got to RTFM now....

[Edit: Oh, it was $10 + s&h.]

Scott
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Old 11-15-2016   #31
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I've had very good luck with the Olympus Stylus Zoom. I literally wore one out and bought another before they discontinued it.
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Old 11-15-2016   #32
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Anyway, I hope you are happy with them. It's an easy beast to master; once you've RTFM.

EDIT:- Having RTFM, what did you think of it? I like it very much as it gives you a lot more detail and so on than other manuals.

Regards, David
I "skimmed" through its 96 pages last night, and it impressed me with the thoughtfulness they designed the camera. It has capabilities I've never seen on a point-and-shoot. It's as if they were competing with Canon EOS cameras, and were swinging for the fences.

I've got a Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX55 that handles much like this monster. There was a Leica version of that camera too, back in the day. Both used the excellent Leica zoom lens. Funny, but I dug it out of the back of the closet and charged its battery too. I used that camera for years, and loved it.

Scott
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Old 11-16-2016   #33
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I "skimmed" through its 96 pages last night, and it impressed me with the thoughtfulness they designed the camera. It has capabilities I've never seen on a point-and-shoot. It's as if they were competing with Canon EOS cameras, and were swinging for the fences.

I've got a Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX55 that handles much like this monster. There was a Leica version of that camera too, back in the day. Both used the excellent Leica zoom lens. Funny, but I dug it out of the back of the closet and charged its battery too. I used that camera for years, and loved it.

Scott
Hi,

It's interesting the way Olympus often seem to go out on a limb and then you realise that they were right and all the others were wrong. They've done it time and time again; it's quite an achievement.

Regards, David
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Old 01-15-2017   #34
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The nice thing about the Contax TVS (version I) is that you can get filters for it. I think they are 30.5mm or something, but you can find them on Ebay or filterfind.net. It's a nice camera. I don't remember off hand if the flash is auto or not but I think it can be turned off before taking the photo (don't have it with me at the moment sorry). I do like the wide to normal zoom length.
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Old 01-25-2017   #35
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The Pentax 928 gets respect around here
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Old 01-25-2017   #36
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The main problem w/ P&S zooms is that by their very nature they have slow lenses. Since these cameras use AE, if you have a slow zoom you are going to have a slow shutter speed at long focal lengths, which will cause shaky pics. As you need more exposure as you go up in focal length, there is really no way around this problem unless you either put the camera on a tripod (which defeats the whole purpose of owning a P&S camera), or use really fast film. That will cause over exposure on the shorter focal lengths because the P&S cameras usually do not have a high top shutter speed, but at least you can mitigate that w/ filters. And the trouble there is that P&S cameras often do not have threads that you can screw a filter on to, and if they do, you won't be able to retract the lens w/ one on it.

I had an Olympus zoom for a while, and the image quality was not nearly as good as the fixed lens camera. My take on this is to buy the camera that has the best fixed lens you can find and crop the shots rather than use a zoom that will degrade your pics. If you want high quality zoom shots, you need an SLR.
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Old 01-25-2017   #37
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Contax TVS III.
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Old 01-25-2017   #38
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The Pentax 928 gets respect around here
Excellent camera -- nice lens and well thought out controls.
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Old 01-25-2017   #39
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Excellent camera -- nice lens and well thought out controls.
Hi,

I'll second that, not many have a B setting and the zoom range is sensible; or am I thinking of the M version? It's late at night here...

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