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  1. #1
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    Post An Amateur's Take on the XZ-1

    Let me start off by saying a little bit about myself. I recently started working at a very photogenic location and was inspired to start taking photos with my iPhone. The quality of the pictures was surprisingly good but I needed more options. The shutter lag and shots per second were just miserable, so I started doing some research into a camera I planned on really investing some time and money into for once! I've had a P&S in the past but never knew much about it and basically just used it for the occasional vacation or family outing. I also own a Kodak ZX-1(one of the Flip competitors) which I used for the same kind of thing.

    When starting to do my research, I originally looked into DSLRs and loved them but found them to be a little too large and costly for my liking. I didn't need something pocketable or cheap but I believe I found a good balance of size, cost, and functionality in the XZ-1.

    I haven't had a ton of time with the XZ-1 but I have taken a wide range of photos, such as action shots of animals, long exposures of the night sky, and family portraits.

    I love having so many options for taking action shots. If I can anticipate the action, I can set M/S/A/P or even iAuto and grab a great shot at least once a second. If I can't anticipate the action but I just have a feeling, I can turn on the HI1 or HI2 setting and take some decent shots 7-15 frames a second. These settings work especially well in bright sunlight. Darker shots tend to get too noisy since the high shutter speed bumps the ISO up quite high.

    I've only tried the night sky photography a few times but I've had some great results. Comparing my results to a friend with a more expensive DSLR left me fairly surprised. I'm not sure what camera model or lens was being used but when using similar settings to mine, my shots came out much clearer and brighter. Once my tripod arrives, I'll be experimenting more and update the review with some examples.

    The family portraits I've taken have been very successful. I was happy and surprised with the depth of field capabilities of the XZ-1. I've never owned a camera with this ability at all so its a lot of fun to experiment with.

    Some of the other features of the XZ-1 include a scalable flash, 720p video and some fun ART filters. The scalable flash is very interesting to someone who has never owned a camera like this and as definitely come in handy. I enjoy taking pictures of my dogs inside and a full blown flash can just ruin the shots. When I put the flash on 1/64th or 1/16th, I can get some nice action shots without over exposing. I haven't tried the video at all but I will be going on vacation in a few months and I'll update the review then =). The ART filters can be fun. Pop Art takes some great shots of locations with a wide range of color and dramatic tone can take some great shots of nature. I also find dramatic tone to be fun in combination with a full flash, especially with animals with fur. The only thing that definitely doesn't work with dramatic tone is portraits of people...unless of course you're making a zombie movie...

    I plan on posting examples soon so check back! Also, if you have any questions feel free to reply here or PM me. I'm sure I'm missing a lot from this review so if I think of anything, I'll update it.

  2. #2
    Liz
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    Re: An Amateur's Take on the XZ-1

    This is a GREAT review! It's better than a lot of user reviews I've read for different cameras. I could not have done such a nice job. I have this camera myself, and I learned a few things (about the flash for example) from your review.

    You also did a good job composing your review - and it was interesting to read. Thanks for taking the time to write it - and post it.

    I look forward to seeing the pics when you get a chance too. :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

    Liz

  3. #3
    Junior Member fotomatix's Avatar
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    Re: An Amateur's Take on the XZ-1

    I've owned this cam for a few months and must say it's a gem and pleasure to shoot with. I sold my EPL-2!!!!!
    I'm not patient enough to pay attention to all the details of taking the right shot, in the specific setting with the right lens....

    The XZ-1 makes a novice like me (maybe above average knowledge) look like a pro. The shots are vibrant and crisp and the art filters add variety and spice.....

    I experimented with the flash intensities as well, funny enough on my Lab pup indoors.....really improves your image....

    great post, thanks 'weilkevin'...cheers
    You took a photo of what?
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  4. #4
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    Re: An Amateur's Take on the XZ-1

    Here are some sample shots =)

    Starting off with a few portraits. Keep in mind that chickens and dogs rarely stay still so these shots were fairly lucky in my opinion.







    This was taken using HI1 or HI2 and the ISO was bumped up to 1000 which, in my opinion, doesn't completely ruin the shot.



    I believe this one was just a lucky shot since I wasn't using HI1. I'm very happy with how clearly the XZ-1 was able to capture this action shot without blurring it.



    These next two shots were taken using 100% flash and the dramatic tone ART setting. I really love how interesting these shots can be without too much effort =)





    Just a close up of some flowers. Might have been taken with macro mode but I can't recall =)



    Shows off some of the depth of field capabilities of the XZ-1.



    Fairly low light shot with some very fidgety baby goats!



    F1.8 | Shutter 20s | ISO100 . The XZ-1 was sitting on a railing...I really need a tripod...



    Extremely close up portrait of Zoysia goat again showing off the great depth of field abilities of the XZ-1.

    Last edited by weilkevin; 06-27-2011 at 09:47 AM. Reason: added context to pictures.

  5. #5
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: An Amateur's Take on the XZ-1

    Very impressive. They certainly don't look like p&s pictures.
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  6. #6
    Liz
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    Re: An Amateur's Take on the XZ-1

    Nice work there! I especially like the close-up (macro?) shots. They are quite sharp - and of course, enjoy that famous Olympus color!

    Thanks for posting. It looks like you're enjoying your new "toy!" :thumbsup:

    Liz

  7. #7
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    Re: An Amateur's Take on the XZ-1

    Amateur here too. like to ask how to take a double explosure with xz-1? thanks

  8. #8
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    Re: An Amateur's Take on the XZ-1

    If you turn the control dial to Scene setting and scroll the options using the lens control ring you'll find the option called multiple exposure. Then you can just take a few shots and it will automatically superimpose them for you.

  9. #9
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    Re: An Amateur's Take on the XZ-1

    Very impressive.



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