Wednesday, July 25, 2007

New cameras from Fuji: F50fd, S8000fd, Z100fd, Z10fd, A920, F480, S5800fd

  • Details at DigitalCamera.jp
  • Recurring theme: Sensor-shift image stabilization, first 7th generation SuperCCD at 12mp, new version of face detection that can detect faces at angles or even profiles.

  • Fuji joins the 18x super zoom party with the S8000fd, featuring an 18x 27mm-486mm equivalent lens, 8mp sensor (presumably dropping to 1/2.5" size), not SuperCCD, September at 50,000 yen or $400 in the USA. Shoots at the blazing speed of 1.3 fps (three shots) at full resolution (how sad is that for a 2007 model!). It does have full manual controls, image stabilization, although it's not clear whether it's optical or sensor-shift (conficting reports), and runs on AA batteries. The sensor is also conflicting, some places say SuperCCD but the digitalcamera.jp story says "no honeycomb CCD". Fuji's Japanese site says it uses a 1/2.35" CCD, but not SuperCCD, and sensor-shift stabilization.



  • Once upon time known for their low noise performance, the F50fd goes megapixel crazy at 12mp 1/1.6". Ouch! But it addes sensor-shift stabilization, something Fuji was lacking. Late August and 45,000 yen. In the US, it is $300 in September. This one has full manual controls (hoooray!), a 2.7" LCD, ISO to the moon, an makeover portrait mode (I kid you not!), 230 CIPA LiIon. And to clear up the confusion, the F50fd is a new 12mp camera. The F40fd is at 8mp, the F45fd is a blue version of the F40fd, and the F47fd is a 9mp version of the F40fd. The F50fd is different.
  • Not to be outdone by the Sony T100, Fuji comes up with the Z100fd using a 5x optical zoom hidden inside the camera body. Also sensor-shift stabilization, 8mp 1/2.5" sensor, not SuperCCD, 40000 yen in late september. The Z100fd has not been announced for the US market!
  • Fuji's Japanese press release says that Fuji will adjust to the users of each market, so some cameras will be here, some there and some over there.
  • With that in mind, the following cameras were not announced in Japan today:


  • The Z10fd, a 7mp, 3x optical bijou for the Y generation with a blog function. Late September for $200. Jeff Keller (of dcresource) praises the design of this one. 2.5" LCD, 200 CIPA LiIon, in five fashionably vibrant colors.


  • The Fuji F480 on the entry-level of things, with 8mp and 4x optical starting at 28mm wide. Priced at $180 in the US this looks like a market share grabber candidate, with a September 2007 release. Also features 2.7" LCD, 230 CIPA LiIon battery.


  • The Fuji A920, a follow-up to the A900, remains at 9mp 1/1.6", 4x optical starting at 39mm, 2.7' LCD, uses 2 AA batteries for a change. The A920 is compatible with the Fujifilm WP-FXA800 Aquamask
  • But wait, there's more! According to CNet Asia there's also the S5800fd, which looks like a sequential update to the S5700 (aka S700). Specs of the S5800fd. It will be available in Singapore, not in Japan, not in the USA. I do not know about the rest of the world.
  • The Fuji CEO talked about having 10% market share based on CIPA numbers and wanting 15%. Not sure if he is talking about the Japanese market, or worldwide.
  • More details emerging at DCI, and at IR, dcresource, PopPhoto, and CNet's Crave Blog. Buy.com has the F50fd listed but their server cannot handle the hits at the moment.


    My Early Opinion
  • The introduction of sensor-shift stabilization was much needed for Fuji as they were the last of the major manufacturers to add it. This was the positive news.
  • And now the bad news: Pixel-stuffing the F50fd whose claim to fame was low noise performance at 6mp. We do have to give the 7th generation SuperCCD a chance to showcase its results, but we've already seen a loss in low noise improvements with the 8mp and 9mp 1/1.6" sensors. Finally Fuji added full manual control but not looking good on paper. Also gone is the SuperCCD sensor from the S8000fd, which opts for a standard 8mp 1/2.5" sensor and an 18x optical zoom that's becoming popular now. At least this one has image stabilization. The Camcorderization of Long Zooms continues!
  • The Z10fd and F480 look like models that could bring in new sales to Fuji, especially since they can take SD cards and they cost under $200


    UPDATE: Questions Answered! Unanswered questions on the Fuji S8000fd As of right now (3am New York time), there are unanswered questions on the Fuji S8000fd because of conflicting information on the various websites. Here is a quick summary:
  • Sensor: Is it a 1/2.5" standard, 1/2.35" standard, or 1/2.5" SuperCCD (not SuperCCD more likely). Update: It uses a 1/2.35" Bayer sensor, not SuperCCD.
  • Image Stabilization: Is it sensor-shift or optical. (Sensor-shift more likely). Update: It uses sensor-shift image stabilization
  • This will probably be sorted out by tomorrow morning.

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