"Great camera with only minor niggles"4.0 starson by jrk358
Pros: Crisp well saturated images.
Stabilizer allows hand held photos at max zoom.
Intelligent Auto handles difficult lighting superbly.
Excellent viewfinder combined with tilting LCD screen.
Shoots RAW (but see Cons)
Software supports MAC.
Cons: No RAW in full Auto.
Tendancy to blow out highlights.
No rubber eye cup on viewfinder.
Easy to knock focus selector and viewfinder dioptre controls.
Silkypix software/RAW converter not the best.
Manual only on disc/internet - not printed.
Summary: I find this camera subjectively better than my Canon EOS 50D which I replaced with the Lumix. It was a choice between this as a 'bridge' camera or an ILC camera but despite there being more noise from the tiny sensor in the FZ200, it is well controlled. The constant f2.8 long zoom is much more versatile, especially for holiday use when I don't want loading down with a bag of lenses and accessories. Highlights are easily controlled in 'creative' manual modes where you can also use RAW for even greater control of the final image.
One of the best feature is the 'back-light' function where the camera takes 3 exposures and combines them as an HDR image which brings out the best in both shadows and highlights when shooting against the light.
The minor niggles are easily overcome, but the lack of a paper manual means a long learning curve sitting in front of a computer screen.
I would recommend this as an ideal travel camera because of its sheer versatility, good image quality and lightness.
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