Olympus SP-550 UZ: 18x ultra zoom

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Ken, Jan 26, 2007.

  1. Ken

    Ken Guest

    This look like it will be a good one???

    Not yet in UK but anyone elsewhere got one or know the price range?

    Ken
    Ken, Jan 26, 2007
    #1
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  2. Only 7 megapixels - that is a let down. Should be at least 8,
    perhaps 10 or even 12.

    > This look like it will be a good one???
    >
    > Not yet in UK but anyone elsewhere got one or know the price
    > range?
    > Ken
    Paul D. Sullivan, Jan 26, 2007
    #2
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  3. Ken

    Skip Guest

    I might agree with 8 mp, but cramming 12 mp on a tiny sensor the size of the
    one on that camera would probably result in some quality issues. I think
    Oly is to be applauded for not getting into the megapixel race, but rather
    keeping the resolution proportionate to the sensor size and sacrificing
    "throw weight" for image quality.

    --
    Skip Middleton
    www.shadowcatcherimagery.com
    www.pbase.com/skipm
    "Paul D. Sullivan" <> wrote in message
    news:jtmuh.11106$Kf.436@trndny07...
    > Only 7 megapixels - that is a let down. Should be at least 8, perhaps 10
    > or even 12.
    >
    >> This look like it will be a good one???
    >>
    >> Not yet in UK but anyone elsewhere got one or know the price
    >> range?
    >> Ken

    >
    >
    Skip, Jan 26, 2007
    #3
  4. Ken

    Ken Guest

    My needs are for a camera with wide angle (28mm) which I have with my
    Olympus 5060 but missing a better zoom when I need to get further back! So
    will keep an eye on it as the 7 megapixels is fine for my needs.

    Ken

    "Skip" <> wrote in message
    news:QDmuh.18$...
    >I might agree with 8 mp, but cramming 12 mp on a tiny sensor the size of
    >the one on that camera would probably result in some quality issues. I
    >think Oly is to be applauded for not getting into the megapixel race, but
    >rather keeping the resolution proportionate to the sensor size and
    >sacrificing "throw weight" for image quality.
    >
    > --
    > Skip Middleton
    > www.shadowcatcherimagery.com
    > www.pbase.com/skipm
    > "Paul D. Sullivan" <> wrote in message
    > news:jtmuh.11106$Kf.436@trndny07...
    >> Only 7 megapixels - that is a let down. Should be at least 8, perhaps 10
    >> or even 12.
    >>
    >>> This look like it will be a good one???
    >>>
    >>> Not yet in UK but anyone elsewhere got one or know the price
    >>> range?
    >>> Ken

    >>
    >>

    >
    >
    Ken, Jan 26, 2007
    #4
  5. Paul D. Sullivan wrote:
    > Only 7 megapixels - that is a let down. Should be at least 8,
    > perhaps 10 or even 12.


    5 or 6MP would be a better match for the sensor size.

    David
    David J Taylor, Jan 26, 2007
    #5
  6. > Paul D. Sullivan wrote:
    >> Only 7 megapixels - that is a let down. Should be at least 8,
    >> perhaps 10 or even 12.

    >
    > 5 or 6MP would be a better match for the sensor size.
    >
    > David


    The Canon A640 does 10mp on its sensor. Is that not a good match
    either?
    Paul D. Sullivan, Jan 26, 2007
    #6
  7. Paul D. Sullivan wrote:
    >> Paul D. Sullivan wrote:
    >>> Only 7 megapixels - that is a let down. Should be at least 8,
    >>> perhaps 10 or even 12.

    >>
    >> 5 or 6MP would be a better match for the sensor size.
    >>
    >> David

    >
    > The Canon A640 does 10mp on its sensor. Is that not a good match
    > either?


    I suspect that for the great majority of uses, a 5MP or 6MP sensor would
    be a better compromise there as well. Of course, if your are regularly
    printing at greater than A4 size (210 x 297mm) you may prefer more pixels.

    Note that Nikon in its most recent DSLR has opted for a quality 6MP sensor
    rather than following the marketing droids "more MP is better".

    David
    David J Taylor, Jan 26, 2007
    #7
  8. Ken

    ASAAR Guest

    On Fri, 26 Jan 2007 14:34:44 GMT, Paul D. Sullivan wrote:

    >> 5 or 6MP would be a better match for the sensor size.
    >>
    >> David

    >
    > The Canon A640 does 10mp on its sensor. Is that not a good match
    > either?


    If 7mp is too many pixels for the SP-550's 1/2.5" sensor, then 10mp
    is also too many for the A640's larger 1/1.8" sensor. The A640
    doesn't cram the pixels quite as tightly, but it's pretty close,
    with less than a 10% difference. If you want to work it out for
    yourself, dpreview gives these dimensions for the sensors, including
    for comparison APS-C, which is roughly comparable to the size of
    most DSLR sensors:

    > 1/2.5" == 5.760mm x 4.290mm == 24.71 sq.mm
    > 1/1.8" == 7.176mm x 5.319mm == 38.17 sq.mm
    > 1.8" (APS-C) == 23.7mm x 15.7mm == 372 sq.mm


    Comparing the 10mp A640 with the 7mp A620, the increased number of
    pixels doesn't translate to the same increase in resolution. The
    horizontal and vertical absolute resolution increased from 1,550 and
    1,600 LPH to 1,775 and 1,850 LPH. This is very close to what you'd
    expect from an increase of 7mp to 8mp. If the A640's resolution
    increased in proportion to its 10 mp, it would have achieved 2,214
    (hor) and 2,286 (vert) LPH. Along with its very modest improvement
    over the A620, the A640 is probably a bit noisier at the high ISOs.

    (see http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canona640/page15.asp )


    How does my old Fuji S5100 with its small 1/2.5" 4mp compare?
    According to dpreview, absolute resolution is 1,200 and 1,250 LPH.
    Not too bad, and the diminishing returns gotten from the higher mp
    count sensors is apparent. If the S5100's sensor was enlarged in
    its physical dimensions to provide an increase from 4mp to 7mp and
    10mp (assuming a perfect lens to match), its resolution would
    increase to 2,100 and 2,188 LPH (7mp) and 3,000 and 3,125 LPH
    (10mp). The A620 (which I also own) and the A640 don't come close
    to matching these resolutions. In other words, as most people here
    have long recognized, the megapixel race is mainly a numbers game
    devised by the camera manufacturers' marketing departments. It
    helps sell cameras, but doesn't help make good purchasing decisions.
    ASAAR, Jan 26, 2007
    #8
  9. Ken

    Alfred Molon Guest

    In article <45b9fa35$0$31237$>, says...
    > My needs are for a camera with wide angle (28mm) which I have with my
    > Olympus 5060 but missing a better zoom when I need to get further back! So
    > will keep an eye on it as the 7 megapixels is fine for my needs.


    If you don't need live preview you could get an E400 with the double
    lens kit. You'd cover the 28-300mm range and still have a very compact
    package.
    --

    Alfred Molon
    ------------------------------
    Olympus 50X0, 7070, 8080, E300, E330, E400 and E500 forum at
    http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/MyOlympus/
    Olympus E330 resource - http://myolympus.org/E330/
    Alfred Molon, Jan 26, 2007
    #9
  10. Ken

    Ken Guest

    "Alfred Molon" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > In article <45b9fa35$0$31237$>, says...
    >> My needs are for a camera with wide angle (28mm) which I have with my
    >> Olympus 5060 but missing a better zoom when I need to get further back!
    >> So
    >> will keep an eye on it as the 7 megapixels is fine for my needs.

    >
    > If you don't need live preview you could get an E400 with the double
    > lens kit. You'd cover the 28-300mm range and still have a very compact
    > package.
    > --
    >
    > Alfred Molon
    > ------------------------------
    > Olympus 50X0, 7070, 8080, E300, E330, E400 and E500 forum at
    > http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/MyOlympus/
    > Olympus E330 resource - http://myolympus.org/E330/


    I'll take a look at it but in my work I haven't time to change lenses.

    Ken
    Ken, Jan 26, 2007
    #10
  11. Ken

    ray Guest

    On Fri, 26 Jan 2007 11:43:47 +0000, Ken wrote:

    > This look like it will be a good one???
    >
    > Not yet in UK but anyone elsewhere got one or know the price range?
    >
    > Ken


    Now if they'd scrap the stupid xd cards and get with the rest of the world.
    ray, Jan 26, 2007
    #11
  12. Ken

    grruffbowwow Guest

    On Jan 26, 11:55 am, ray <> wrote:
    > On Fri, 26 Jan 2007 11:43:47 +0000, Ken wrote:
    > > This look like it will be a good one???

    >
    > > Not yet in UK but anyone elsewhere got one or know the price range?

    >
    > > KenNow if they'd scrap the stupid xd cards and get with the rest of the world.


    I agree whole-heartedly - what a waste. Both Fuji and Olympus are
    coming out with some very interesting and innovative cameras, but
    they're hobbled by the stupid cards. This new Oly camera looks really
    good; I too have an Oly C-5060 that I'd like to replace with a "wide to
    long-zoom" for lightweight general use. I broke down and bought a Fuji
    F10 a while ago, and was pleasantly surprised to find that an xD card
    wasn't twice the price of other formats anymore; more like 10% higher -
    and a lot less than a Sony memory stick. Still, I feel like I'm being
    bent over the cash-register when I think about buying another.
    grruffbowwow, Jan 26, 2007
    #12
  13. Ken

    Alfred Molon Guest

    In article <>, ray says...

    > Now if they'd scrap the stupid xd cards and get with the rest of the world.


    I'd say it's highly irrelevant what card format they use. Cards are
    cheap nowadays and it's very likely you won't reuse the cards you buy
    today with your next camera. Besides, what is the rest of the world -
    CF, SD or what else? CF sucks by the way. I bought a USB card reader and
    cannot insert anymore the CF card because one of the pins got bent. Why
    on earth does a memory card have to have so many pins?
    --

    Alfred Molon
    ------------------------------
    Olympus 50X0, 7070, 8080, E300, E330, E400 and E500 forum at
    http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/MyOlympus/
    Olympus E330 resource - http://myolympus.org/E330/
    Alfred Molon, Jan 26, 2007
    #13
  14. (Alfred Molon) wrote:

    > I'd say it's highly irrelevant what card format they use. Cards are
    > cheap nowadays


    Yes, even XD cards are pretty cheap now (not as cheap as SD, but a lot
    better than in the past.

    Although I love the 28mm wide end, the big factor for me so far with
    this camera is the EVF (the factor which stopped me buying the similarly
    compact Canon S3). The preview at
    http://www.dcresource.com/reviews/olympus/sp550uz-review/index.shtml has
    no details but says the EVF is ok. Hard to tell much from that though. :)

    Andrew McP
    Andrew MacPherson, Jan 27, 2007
    #14
  15. >> I'd say it's highly irrelevant what card format they use.
    >> Cards are cheap nowadays

    >
    > Yes, even XD cards are pretty cheap now (not as cheap as SD,
    > but a lot better than in the past.
    >
    > Although I love the 28mm wide end, the big factor for me so
    > far with
    > this camera is the EVF (the factor which stopped me buying the
    > similarly compact Canon S3). The preview at
    > has no details but says the EVF is ok. Hard to tell much from
    > that though. :)


    I have an XD card for my Oly C5050, but was happy that it came
    with a Compact Flash slot, which I had thought would be the
    dominant format, but it looks like SD cards have taken over
    completely.

    I ended up not getting the Canon S3 because of the lower pixel
    resolution and also the EVF.

    I opted to get the Canon A640 instead, which is SD based. I
    really do prefer the SD format to the XD card. XD is just too
    small for me physically. I might lose it if I took it out and
    swapped it every now and then.

    I wonder if ANY super-zooms are going to have a standard Optical
    Viewfinder? I also wonder when they will get to 8 or 10
    megapixels to make it worth the step up from my Oly C5050.
    Paul D. Sullivan, Jan 27, 2007
    #15
  16. Paul D. Sullivan wrote:
    []
    > I wonder if ANY super-zooms are going to have a standard Optical
    > Viewfinder? I also wonder when they will get to 8 or 10
    > megapixels to make it worth the step up from my Oly C5050.


    Unlikely, as the cost, size and weight of the viewfinder lens would be too
    high.

    The EVF is already a through-the-lens viewfinder, so can provide precise
    framing and lack of parallax. All it needs is more resolution, and
    Minolta have already shown that is possible with their VGA-resolution
    finder for the Minolta A2.

    David
    David J Taylor, Jan 27, 2007
    #16
  17. Ken

    Alfred Molon Guest

    In article <fJGuh.46$Hb6.23@trndny02>, Paul D. Sullivan says...

    > but it looks like SD cards have taken over
    > completely.


    Have they? I used to think that CF is the dominant format.
    --

    Alfred Molon
    ------------------------------
    Olympus 50X0, 7070, 8080, E300, E330, E400 and E500 forum at
    http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/MyOlympus/
    Olympus E330 resource - http://myolympus.org/E330/
    Alfred Molon, Jan 27, 2007
    #17
  18. >> I wonder if ANY super-zooms are going to have a standard
    >> Optical Viewfinder? I also wonder when they will get to 8 or
    >> 10 megapixels to make it worth the step up from my Oly C5050.

    >
    > Unlikely, as the cost, size and weight of the viewfinder lens
    > would be too high.
    >
    > The EVF is already a through-the-lens viewfinder, so can
    > provide precise framing and lack of parallax. All it needs is
    > more resolution, and Minolta have already shown that is
    > possible with their VGA-resolution finder for the Minolta A2.


    Isn't Minolta leaving the market though?

    I have a very hard time using EVF's. I have poor eyesite and
    cannot seem to view LCD's nearly as well as others, but have no
    trouble with optical viewfinders by comparison.

    I am baffled as to why they have not upped the Megapixels to at
    least 8mp.
    Paul D. Sullivan, Jan 27, 2007
    #18
  19. Same here. But suddenly, so many of the new cameras seem to use
    SD, and Digital Video Recorders even come with 'em now. I was
    confident Compact Flash would have won, but I guess its size
    makes it less desireable.

    > In article <fJGuh.46$Hb6.23@trndny02>, Paul D. Sullivan says...
    >
    >> but it looks like SD cards have taken over
    >> completely.

    >
    > Have they? I used to think that CF is the dominant format.
    Paul D. Sullivan, Jan 27, 2007
    #19
  20. Paul D. Sullivan wrote:
    >>> I wonder if ANY super-zooms are going to have a standard
    >>> Optical Viewfinder? I also wonder when they will get to 8 or
    >>> 10 megapixels to make it worth the step up from my Oly C5050.

    >>
    >> Unlikely, as the cost, size and weight of the viewfinder lens
    >> would be too high.
    >>
    >> The EVF is already a through-the-lens viewfinder, so can
    >> provide precise framing and lack of parallax. All it needs is
    >> more resolution, and Minolta have already shown that is
    >> possible with their VGA-resolution finder for the Minolta A2.

    >
    > Isn't Minolta leaving the market though?


    Indeed - they only used that viewfinder in one camera. Too expensive,
    perhaps?

    > I have a very hard time using EVF's. I have poor eyesite and
    > cannot seem to view LCD's nearly as well as others, but have no
    > trouble with optical viewfinders by comparison.
    >
    > I am baffled as to why they have not upped the Megapixels to at
    > least 8mp.


    Of course, you need to use what best suits you. The EVF should offer at
    least VGA resolution, and with the chance to present a larger, brighter
    image, I am surprised a high-resolution EVF doesn't suit you. It has the
    potential to be bigger and brighter than the viewfinder in a DSLR, which
    can be limited by the small aperture lenses frequently used. The typical
    DSLR viewfinder no longer offers the focussing aids for accurate manual
    focussing, although it will offer depth-of-field preview (at even more
    reduction in brightness).

    For what applications do you need 8MP?

    David
    David J Taylor, Jan 27, 2007
    #20
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