What I ended up with is Panasonic Lumix ZS3. I was also considering was the Canon xs200 is. It also has 12x. Both also shoot HD vid but the Lumix does so in stereo and allows optical zooming in the video mode while the Canon does not. I want to shoot my band to put stuff on iTunes only I will watch. Still when I went to the store (biggest in NYV) I thought I'd give the Canon a final chance. Both are supposed to be fragile with the video screen of the Lumix prone to breaking and the Canon having a problem with "lens errors." All along i wanted the Canon. Ive had several and they way they dial up the colors appeals to us amateurs. The Panny literally pales in comparison. Plus the Canon is more Mac friendly. I was looking at the Canon, getting the soft sell and thinking "hey this is nice." I made the mistake of asking how reliable they are and the guy said "very." at the same time I realized i couldn't shut it off. It wouldn't retract. The guy looked at it and said, "Hmm, lens error." Since the screen on the Panasonic did not break in my hands, i ended up that one. If you look on Amazon for the Canon, the first customer review is a ringing endorsment over the Panasonic. She amends her review though to add she has experienced the lens error. This is sad. I made sure to get a lengthy warranty. I couldnt get a spare battery. Sold our world-wide. I do have a Canon SLR but i need something pocketable for a trip. This is my first post. I think im going to need help with this thing so isigned up!