It doesn't look like my 3000z Zoom lens functions while recording a movie...It stays set to whatever it was set to prior to pressing the shutter button to begin recording...then I can't change it (zoom no longer works after recording starts)... Is this the way it's supposed to work?
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Are you sure you did not change anything in the monitor settings?
Press the menu button, then got the wrench symbol in that part of the menu choose monitor settings and then press ok,
See what mode you are in and cycle through the possibilities. Don't stop where it says monitor off, but in one of the other settings.
On p. 100 in the manual it states that the zoom does not work when shooting a movie with the cd400 only.
The cd400 has quite a few more features,for example the higher resolution and the Carl Zeiss lens, compared to the cd250, thereby justifying the higher price. It has more functions as a still digital camera, more manual settings, etc., so I guess you have to sacrifice that one function. No digital still camera will replace a camcorder - the fact that you can record a movie as long as the cd allows is a lot better than most other still cameras. So you and your friend have the best of all worlds together, you just have to share!
I have taken thousands of pictures with my cd400, and the picture quality and the cheap storage are great. Happy shooting!
I have tried a couple of external flashes on the 3000Z. It is my understanding from reading various Internet posts (and I am sure someone will correct me if I am wrong) that, other than triggering the flash to go off, there is no communication between the external flash in the hot shoe of the 3000Z and the 3000Z itself. Settings need to be made manually in the manual mode to set the f-stop and the aperture to get good exposures. The Metz flashes are expensive. Most have opted to use less expensive flashes such as the Vivitar 283/383, or a Sunpak, or even a "Wal-mart" flash. I chose an inexpensive bounce flash with a secondary "fill-in" flash to get rid of the shadows sometimes seen with indoor bounce flash pics. I purchased the Phoenix 82ZBDA Multi-dedicated twin flash from Porter's Photo Catalogue for $37.95. This flash works fine, but is not that powerful (GN 79 ). If you need a more powerful flash, you might consider the Vivitar 383.