View Full Version : compact for mountain biking
23-08-12, 09:51 PM
Hi folks. As you can see I'm a newbie to the site. After years of using a simple Olympus for taking photo's when I go out Mountain biking it gave up the ghost. It was also the families compact and my wee girl now 10 loved the video feature. Now I have a dilema, I'm looking for a replacement you see. A compact that is fast enough to capture a fast moving subject without shutter lag, with a good zoom, and video feature. Ideally I'd be looking at around £150. Hope you don't think it cheeky joining and posting for buying advice but I do have an alterior motive in trying to get my wife into the hobby. (need to keep her busy so that I can get out on the bike more often ;) ) we have a conon 450d but that's obviously a bit bulky to take biking and the number of times I fall of it wouldn't last long. Thanks in advance
24-08-12, 02:48 PM
Have a look at the Panasonic TZ20 CLICKY (http://www.photographyblog.com/reviews/panasonic_lumix_dmc_tz20_review/). It has been reduced to under half price at £149.99 which is a real bargain as it started out at around £350! CLICKY (http://www.jessops.com/online.store/products/80675/show.html)
A compact that is fast enough to capture a fast moving subject without shutter lagNo camera has nil shutter lag. You need to learn Panning CLICKY (http://digital-photography-school.com/mastering-panning-to-photograph-moving-subjects) which gives the subject a sense of movement while the main subject stays sharp. Or Pre-Focus CLICKY (http://digital-photography-school.com/pre-focus-to-combat-shutter-lag) that helps with focussing which is the main cause of shutter lag.
I shoot with the Panasonic TZ7 and TZ10 CLICKY (http://www.amateurphotographer.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?71760-TZ7-zoom-range-%287-images%29&highlight=zoom+range+images) for some test zoom shots.
24-08-12, 07:47 PM
Thanks Chris. There's a bewildering number of compacts out there, having looked at one or two reviews it looks a good bet, and the price fits in well too and thanks for the links.
03-09-12, 01:20 AM
The TZ20 is an excellent choice. My only concern is your comment about falling off your bike a lot with it, and whether it would withstand such abuse. An alternative is to consider a 'tough' camera - waterproof, shockproof, drop proof etc, but you'd have to sacrifice the big zoom.
03-09-12, 10:21 AM
Hi Nigel. Thanks for the advice, much appreciated. The camera will be in a very well padded in a backpack and is usually wrapped in some clothing. The other camera worked well but unfortunately got wet and died hence the search for a replacement. As I said the camera has to double as the family point and shoot as well so I will be trying to look after it as much as possible. Nigel your not related to Gee or Rachel Atherton by any chance :). Anyway they do say that if you don't fall off your not trying hard enough ;). Cheers again
04-09-12, 03:48 PM
There are a couple of options and one camera that has been mentioned is the Panasonic Lumix TZ20. It has been superseded by the TZ30 but the advantage this brings is that it’s cheaper than ever before. For £150 you get a 16x optical zoom lens that’s equivalent to 24-384mm, it records full HD video (1920x1080) in the AVCHD format and is very simple to operate. Our only slight concern however is how well it’ll survive your mountain biking pursuits. A bit of care and a protective compact case should prevent damage, however the last thing you want is to spend £150 and for it to break the first time you land on it after coming off your bike.
As Nigel has commented, the alternative is a ‘tough’ camera that’s been designed to survive any situation that’s thrown at it. You will have to sacrifice a big zoom and pay a bit more than you’d hoped for but you can rest assured it won’t break easily. For £100 more than you were hoping to pay you could pick up the Panasonic Lumix FT4. It offers good ISO range of 100-6400 and the shutter speed can be set to a maximum of 1/1300sec, which should be fast enough to freeze any of your fast moving subjects. It has a 4.6x optical zoom that covers a focal length equivalent to 28-128mm and it features full HD video that you desire. For the extra money we’d say it’s definitely worth purchasing a ‘tough’ camera and when you consider the demanding conditions it’s going to be faced with and how long you want it to last it makes the sensible choice.
I hope this helps you come to a decision.
Kind Regards, M
05-09-12, 09:05 PM
hi michael. having looked at the camera, it's definately one to consider. Will have to run it past she who thinks she knows how much things cost. What's your thoughts on a Go Pro as a sports camera? Thinking I might squeeze one of these in exclusively for the biking and get something for the rest of the family to fiddle with.
10-10-12, 08:52 PM
Well we plunged in and bought the tz20 and I have to say how impressed I am with it's picture quality. We took it to the alps with us and the pictures are excellent and the video is great too. The only gripes i have are the touch screen photo taking (loads of pics of sky/feet/up noses etc) and it's inability to take pics through a fence/cage i.e at the zoo. The first one I'm sure I can fix (read the instructions I hear you say) the second one I don't think I can fix. Thank you very much for your help we are very happy with the camera.
10-10-12, 09:12 PM
Hi. Glad to hear you had a good experience with the TZ20.
Not sure if I can help with the touch screen (thank heavens it's digital and not film lol!)
As for shooting through mesh link fences and cages. I always got as close as I could then used Spot Metering - that's only one focus point! Unfortunately the Panasonics doesn't have an Infinity setting that would help...
Still, glad you got some decent images with it :)
13-10-12, 06:33 PM
yeah, i think so, TZ20 is an excellent choice. My only concern is your comment about falling off your bike a lot with it, and whether it would withstand such abusehttp://www.okhealthy.com/image/56.jpg
14-10-12, 09:46 AM
Hi steven. Last month I was taking part in an event in wales and managed to fall off at 20-25 mph and break my collar bone. the camera was in my back pack and survived no problem as it's kept in a specific media pocket which is well padded and up around the neck area. That said you're right I was worried about that point too as I'm sure it's not shock proof or a sports camera but that's the worst accident I've had in eight years on the bike and I would hope the worst i would want to experience and it hasn't suffered at all. I see Sony and JVC are venturing into the sports camera sector to give go pro a run for their money so I might just look at one of them after they've had time to be evaluated.
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