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Fujifilm FinePix F900EXR Digital Camera - Red (16MP, 20x Optical Zoom) (discontinued by manufacturer)
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- 16.0million pixels
- 1/ 2-inch EXR CMOS II with primary color filter
- 20× FUJINON optical zoom lens
- Wireless Image Transfer
- Full HD video and Advanced Art Filters
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From the Manufacturer
With a good quality FUJINON 20× optical zoom lens, plus a powerful new EXR-CMOS II sensor with extra fast Phase Detection AF and an EXR Processor II, the F900EXR offers near instantaneous reactions and excellent functionality.
Super-fast response times
The F900EXR's new "Intelligent Hybrid Auto Focus (AF) system" focuses in as little as 0.05 seconds*. when employing the new Phase Detection AF which uses special new pixels that have been added to the EXR-CMOS II sensor. Its speed ensures that your subject will be captured at the precise moment you want it to be, avoiding missed photo opportunities. The camera automatically switches between Phase Detection AF and Contrast Detection AF depending on the subject and scene, guaranteeing superb ease-of-use and fast, accurate, autofocus whatever the shooting conditions.
The powerful 16 megapixel EXR-CMOS II back-side illuminated (BSI) sensor has been engineered to ensure that there will be enough light available for Phase Detection AF at larger apertures and in circumstances where the angle of incidence of light is high.
In addition, the EXR Processor II more than doubles the performance of the first-generation EXR Processor. With a super-fast startup time of 1.1 seconds**, an interval between shots of 0.5 seconds**, and burst-mode rates of 11 frames/seconds** (max. 5 frames), the F900EXR offers fantastic response times that make it a joy to use and ensure you should never have to worry about missing that special shot again.
What's more, you can take advantage of the superb capabilities of the EXR-CMOS II sensor and EXR Processor II just by selecting FUJIFILM's EXR AUTO mode. In this mode, the camera has the ability to automatically optimise output by choosing between 108 pre-determined scene types and adjusting the settings to suit the scene for hassle-free, high-quality results.
20× optical zoom and Intelligent Digital Zoom up to a 40× zoom
From 25mm*** (wide) to 500mm*** (telephoto), the F900EXR offers an impressive zoom range packed into a very slim-line camera body. With the ability to combine the 20x optical zoom with the Intelligent Digital Zoom allowing magnification up to 40×, the F900EXR will capture crisp images of subjects at an impressive distance.
Featuring advanced CMOS-shift image stabilisation which reduces the blurring which often occurs at long zoom ratios from camera shake or subject movement, the F900EXR is built to help you take good quality long zoom shots. With its superior grip for additional hold, you will feel in total control when you're snapping away on your travels.
Wireless Image Transfer to smartphones and computers
The F900EXR's new wireless feature lets you transfer photos and videos**** from the FinePix F900EXR to smartphones, tablets, and computers. For first time, via Wi-Fi®*****, FUJIFILM is able to offer a means to back up your photos on your home PC. Just install the free "FUJIFILM PC AutoSave" software onto your PC and select which folder you want the photos to back up to, and then by linking your Wi-Fi Router and the F900EXR camera you will have set up a very simple to use backup for your photos on your home PC.
To connect to smartphones and tablets you will need to download the free dedicated "FUJIFILM Camera Application" to your iPhone, iPad, or Android™ smartphone or tablet device to transfer up to 30 pictures at a time from the FinePix F900EXR. The app also lets you download videos****, expanding the range of options available for enjoying pictures taken with the camera. Pictures stored on the camera can be viewed and selected for download on large smartphone or tablet screens for a smooth download experience. No wireless LAN access point or complicated ID or password entry is required, and once pictures have been downloaded to the smartphone, it's a simple task to upload them to social networking sites.
High-quality pictures and videos**** can be uploaded hassle-free to the smartphone or tablet of anyone who has downloaded the free "FUJIFILM Camera Application".
Record Full HD movies, thanks to the EXR- CMOS II sensor
Shoot video footage in Full HD at a smooth 60 frames per second with improved Phase Detection AF without losing any of the superior colour reproduction qualities offered by the EXR-CMOS II sensor with high bit rate. Video recording can be started with a single press of the dedicated "Movie recording button". You also can record high-quality sound during filming using the built-in stereo microphone.
Optical zoom and still image photography are available during video recording. Plus friends and family will always be in focus thanks to the face- tracking autofocus feature, which even tracks subjects that look down or away.
The Intelligent Hybrid AF is active during video recording for fast, precise focus. The camera also offers a Scene Recognition for video recording feature that automatically adjusts camera settings for landscapes, close-ups, night landscapes, portraits, backlit portraits, and night portraits for high-quality, hassle-free results with a variety of subjects.
This fully featured camera makes photography a snap
The FinePix F900EXR offers "Advanced Art Filters" for hassle-free access to innovative forms of artistic expression. You can preview these on the LCD before you take your shot.
- Toy Camera – Create shaded borders as if you were taking a photo on a toy camera
- Miniature – Add top and bottom blur for a diorama or miniature effect
- Pop Colour – Emphasise contrast and colour saturation
- High Key – Enhance brightness and reduce contrast to lighten tonal reproduction
- Low Key (NEW) – Create uniformly dark tones with few areas of emphasised highlights
- Dynamic Tone – Create a fantasy effect by dynamically-modulated tonal reproduction
- Soft Focus (NEW) – Create a look that is evenly soft throughout the whole image
- Partial Colour – Retain one selected original colour and change the rest of the photo to black and white. Colours can be selected from red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple for dramatic effect
Further improvements have been made to "Advanced Anti-blur" mode, in which the camera takes four shots in rapid succession at high sensitivity settings and combines them using advanced image processing technology to reduce the effects of blur: it now works effectively with moving subjects for even more beautiful blur- and noise-free shots in low light and at high zoom ratios.
Combine two shots using "Multiple Exposure" mode for a unique effect. Superimposed over the view through the lens in the monitor, the first shot serves as a guide to composing the second shot, allowing more accurate composition and giving you a better idea of how the picture will turn out for unique, creative works of art.
The "Motion panorama 360" feature makes it easy to record dynamic, seamless 360° panoramas. And "Film simulation" lets you choose from five different combinations of colour gamut and tonal range, just as you used to choose the appropriate Fujifilm colour reversal film.
Extra clear display and superb ease-of-use for a variety of shooting modes
Its bright, high-precision, premium 3.0inch, 920,000-dot LCD monitor offers a Monitor Sunlight mode for enhanced viewing in bright sunlight and a greatly improved viewing angle, thanks to a special film overlay employed. The improved viewing angle allows you to take photos from higher angles and makes it easier to show your photos/videos to a group of people crowded around the camera.
Additionally, frequently-used options can be assigned to the camera's "E-fn" or extended function button for enhanced ease of use.
* FUJIFILM research as of November 2012. Compared with other digital cameras, based on CIPA standards, and conducted in High Performance mode at the maximum wide-angle position with AF-area mode set to centre position.
** FUJIFILM research based on CIPA standards.
*** 35mm format equivalent.
**** "FUJIFILM Camera Application" for iOS may not save the movie files that
***** Wi-Fi® is registered trademark of the Wi-Fi Alliance.
Li-ion battery NP-50A
Battery charger BC-50B
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O.K. Let's kick off this review with looking at what's good about this camera:-
Overall build quality - The F900EXR has a really nice high quality feel to it, ergonomically it fits nicely into one's hand and it looks good. One thing to point out is that if you have very large hands this camera and its buttons may be too small for you, but for the most people like myself with average size hands, or people with small hands, this camera fits like a hand in a glove.
Hi-Resolution Monitor Screen - Put simply, it's lovely; images and video displayed on the camera's monitor screen have a real wow factor to them, with great colour, contrast and clarity; top marks here.
Customisable function buttons - A good and very usable feature: I set my `Fn' button for Quick ISO selection and the `E-Fn' for quick access to continues shoot, dynamic range, metering modes and white balance.
Wi-Fi Upload - I like its Wi-Fi ability to upload pictures directly to one's PC using one's wireless router; although setting this option up can be something a task in itself and you have to download a bit of software from the Fuji web site.
20 x Zoom - A good and very useful zoom range that in the 35mm film format equates to a range of 24mm to 500mm, more range than most people will ever need. The sensor-shift image stabilisation helps keep things steady to prevent camera shake, however at when zooming towards the maximum side you still need steady hands. It's not the best image stabilisation out there, but it does a reasonably good job.The 20x zoom maintains good clarity and sharpness throughout its range, which indicates good quality optics from Fuji.
Full HD Video - On the video side the full HD video produces good results, although not as good as a dedicated camcorder. I like the fact that that the speed of zooming in and out is controllable, if you turn the zoom control a bit it zooms slowly and if you turn it more, it zooms fast (very fast), however, there is nothing in between and more control over the zoom rate would be useful. The ability to zoom slowly does help one to frame your scene when taking pictures and that's a good point. Sound is recorded in stereo with the camera's internal microphones; there is however no option to plug in an external microphone to give better sound quality. For full HD video, I recommend using a Class 10, SDHC memory card, 16GB does the job nicely.
Dual-focus system - The dual-focus system using contrast and phase detection works really well, even in low light; focusing is quick and accurate. There is no manual focus option and I would have liked to have seen it included.
RAW - The fact that one can take RAW and Fine Jpeg images at the same time is really great, it's the best of both Worlds and is a key selling point for this camera. To see the results of what is achievable in RAW, I have posted 20 images for you to see and hopefully enjoy: click on the 'See all customer images' link on the top of the this product page (black colour camera model). The RAW converter software that comes with the camera is however somewhat limiting and a better option would be to use Adobe Lightroom to process your RAW images, or Photoshop CS6 if you can afford it.
EXR Modes - For me personally, the key selling point for this camera (besides RAW) is the EXR DR (Dynamic Range) mode: In this mode the Fuji sensor takes two pictures at the same time at different sensitivities and combines them to produce an image of far greater dynamic range than would otherwise be possible. The ability to take pictures in bright sunlight conditions without blowing out all the highlights in the image is simply amazing and the extra headroom that RAW provides enables one to produce images that are truly stunning and exceptional. All the 20 images ('See all customer images' link on the top of the this product page - black colour camera model) are taken in EXR DR mode and one can see the benefit for yourselves; quite simply it puts other compact cameras in the shade. In practice, DR set to 400% works best for me.
Pro Focus mode - A really great feature that nicely blurs the background while keeping the subject sharp; great for portrait shots and gives a nice professional touch to the image. Although one cannot take RAW images in this mode, one can in the `save data setup' menu select the option to save the original unprocessed JPEG image as well as the Pro Focus image. Note: Flash cannot be used in this mode.
Pro Low-Light mode - Another great feature that takes four pictures in rapid succession and produces a good detailed image with very low noise, very useful when working in low light conditions. As with the Pro Focus mode, one cannot take RAW images in this mode, however, one can in the `save data setup' menu select the option to save the original unprocessed JPEG image as well as the Pro Low-Light image. Flash cannot be used in this mode.
JPEG Images - The in-camera processing of its JPEGs is in fact very good; images have plenty of detail and image noise is kept under control, which is good news for those who want to stick with JPEGS rather than work with RAW images.
Image Display Zoom - In the menu, under `Screen Setup' one can set the image preview to zoom automatically to maximum after a picture is taken; this enables one to quickly check that the image is ok (in sharp focus and free of camera shake); there is however no quick option to delete the photo if its a dud, one has to go into the playback menu to do this.
O.K. Now let us look at what's not so good about this camera:-
EXR NR Mode - The EXR NR (Image Noise Reduction) mode which reduces the noise visible in an image at higher ISOs, performed below expectation, in fact it was hard to see any the difference at all. On my older model the Fuji F200EXR, this feature performed admirably and made a big improvement in image quality by reducing the noise in the image, the Fuji F900EXR is poor by comparison and that's why I give this product only four stars.
ISO & Noise - When it comes ISO / Noise level performance, the auto ISO setting of the camera; for example, when scene modes are selected, or when using auto ISO options; it is well controlled by the camera firmware and does not seem to go to unnecessary high ISO levels (which is good), however, the total pixels to sensor size ratio means that noise becomes a major issue above ISO 800 and it is best to keep within the range of ISO 100 to ISO 400 where possible. People have been miss sold the notion that more pixels gives better and more detailed images, however, putting more pixels on small sensors means that the individual pixels have to be smaller and therefore the light gathering area of each pixel is reduced and this leads to more noise in the image, which reduces the overall picture quality. In my view, if Fuji had made this camera a 12 mega pixel instead of 16 mega pixel, the images produced would have been significantly better and so would the results in EXR ND mode; unfortunately, people still want more pixels for their money.
Auto ISO - Although Auto ISO works very well, there is no indication of what the actual ISO that has been selected is, prior to taking a picture and one has to keep going into the playback menu to find out; this uses more of the Camera's display monitor and drains the battery more quickly.
When it comes to battery life, it's o.k. but nowhere near exceptional, so one will need to get a couple extra; they're not expensive and you can use either NP50A, or NP50 batteries. Fuji can do better here, their Fuji F31fd was known as the 24hr camera because one could take pictures all day long (over 400 images) and there will still be power left in its battery.
The F900EXR is a very nice camera, full of good useful features and produces nice images with plenty of detail and good colour and really shines in EXR DR mode and RAW enables one to get the maximum out of your images. The F900EXR is a good high-end compact camera and better than many I have looked at before making my purchase; it doesn't replace my SLRs, not by a long shot, but it is a good camera to have in your pocket for those unexpected photo opportunities.
I've a Fuji F70exr also (still working to this day) and a Fuji XS-1 bridge camera, both are also EXR models
The F900 is a good "8 megapixel camera" but an average 16mp one. Ignore the number, and try some settings to get the best out of the camera. Once set up you'll get consistently good images in bright and lower light levels.
I'll summarise with a pros and cons at the end of the review, and start with the settings first:
At the full 16mp resolution in anything other than really good light, image quality will quickly drop off, even in raw once the ISO levels increase the noise does, and after extensively testing the camera at 8mp and 16mp the differences are so marginal in most situations that I can say in confidence shoot the camera in 8mp (M image size setting)
I would suggest P mode, half resolution (M which is 8mp) and fine. DR should be set to DR400% (you can leave it on auto if you want but DR400 is ideal) Auto ISO to 800 or 1600, if you are using flash you might want to limit the ISO to 800 at most. You can leave the flash at auto so it only uses it when it needs to, or for daylight fill in shots you can use force flash (fires every time) I use Provia, I find Velvia too punchy for me (avoid it for people shots too)
For raw shooters you can get 8mp raw files too. The full 16mp raw might be worth a look for good light and very low ISO levels, but in most cases stick to half resolution
The jpegs will be quite good enough, and even in low light the results will be decent
EXR mode can be useful, you can leave this on auto (it picks what it thinks it best) but I would suggest setting it again to "Dynamic range". In this mode you can't shoot raw, and you get again half resolution 8mp images.
The EXR sensor works by expanding the dynamic range using the unique sensor (takes 2 exposures very quickly to improve the shadows and highlights) but you lose half the resolution. If you use the full resolution 16mp then the camera has to increase the ISO level (with worse image quality) to improve the dynamic range.
Signal to noise works in a similar way to the dynamic range mode, but I've yet to see any obvious advantage in most cases even in low light DR mode works well (S/N mode doesn't take 2 exposures though it combines the 2 sets of images taken at the same time and makes a smaller image) It's worth experiementing a bit though.
You can't shoot raw in EXR mode, just jpeg. You do have additional settings of DR800/1600%. This can improve DR a bit more, but even at half resolution it's increasing the ISO even in good light (thus images will degrade a bit)
Bottom line to get consistently good images in various lighting, either use P (or A) or simply leave the EXR mode to dynamic range. I prefer P as you have flash control (you don't in EXR mode)
If you want the full auto do nothing experience, set the dial to the camera icon (in between the EXR and Adv. mode position) Set image size to M, DR to 400% and Auto ISO to 800/1600, in this mode you can still set flash to auto or forced and you get a full point and shoot auto experience!
Fuji don't do a great job of explaining how to effectively use their cameras, and this has been a problem for some time. I hope that quick guide is of use for some users.
My quick summary of good and bad points are:
+ Good bang per buck nice lens range 20x (25-500mm 35mm equivalent)
+ Autofocus is fast in good light with decent accuracy (has phase detect on sensor) lower light levels really you need the AF assist to be on.
+ Build is good, solid enough metal body, fits the hand nicely.
+ 1/2-inch EXR CMOS II sensor is quite good (slightly bigger than most rivals) Image quality is quite capable (see points about settings above)
+ Option for raw shooting
+ Has built in wifi (I would prefer GPS but that's me)
+ Well featured, more modes than you can shake a stick at (I don't use most of them) though the sweep panoramic is ok, the pro low light can be useful (takes multiple shots and merges them together) Also some higher speed shooting modes 3/6/11/16 but with reductions to image size
+ Good 3" 920K LCD screen it's usable even in harsher light, but take note the screen contrast can be somewhat different to the final image
+ Bracketing is well catered for, exposure, dynamic range and flim simulation
+ Mostly consistent metering, exp compensation available for +/- 2 stops, most of the time it's about right though
+ Flash exposures are good, balancing the ambient with the flash output, no white out flash blasts!
+ Full manual controls PASM modes as well as other special modes (pro focus to blur the background)
+ The lens is quite sharp, across most of the range, but some softness in the extreme corners at the wide end
- No obvious advantages to shooting at full 16mp resolution
- Auto white balance does ok in most situations, but a bit "cool" in daylight (adjust this either in camera or later on)
- Not the easiest camera to get the best out of (requires some persistence and effort)
- Battery life is not great, about 220 odd in my field use, get a spare
- No viewfinder (would be useful at times)
- Shutter speed limited to 8 seconds (at most) could be a limitation if you are a keen night/tripod shooter
- Paint finish can be liable to chipping so take care (get a decent case)
- 16mp raw files are big (over 24MB) and even with a fast card slow the shoot to shoot times a lot
- Full HD video has stereo and AF available (you might hear the AF in quiet environments though) it's ok but nothing stand out v rivals
Taking into account the attractive price, appealing and useful all in one range of the lens, the potential to "grow" into the camera and experiment with some of the more advanced features, it is worth serious consideration (it's priced some way below rival models)
The only caution I have is if you don't really see yourself getting more into photography then you might find a less intimidating model would suit you better. The camera once set up (as above) isn't hard to use, and shot in half resolution capable of decent image quality.
The images are not as good as larger sensors such as the X10, XS-1 and don't even start to compare it to DSLR sized sensors. But..as a starting point for someone who might have an interest in photography, it is a camera that can be quite fun to experiment with, a fairly modest price, and with care the images can be of quite good quality and "good enough" for many users. But do give yourself the time to learn the camera, it's more advanced and a bit more complicated than your normal point and shoot superzoom.
I have just one reservation - and that is to do with the pop up flash / I feel its likely to meet with damage quite easily due to its position (the 200's flash was contained within the body of the camera).
Some of the functionaiity works a bit differently to my earlier model - but once I got used to that - it was just as good, if not better than my 200 (which I adored, and lasted me 5 years - with pretty intensive use)
The F900EXR is fantastic. Great performance with endless configuration possibilities and a wide range of cool special effects. I especially like the colour filter ones. Battery life is reasonable given the cameras crisp clear screen resolution.
The zoom is good and video recording is fine. Shame it doesn't have true GPS instead of Geo Tagging and the wifi transfer is a little fiddly. Raw photos are a plus for this camera but JPEG pictures come out well to.
If you use a Mac then you'll soon discover the Fuji Film software is not great!
Other than than that, I love it. Enjoy!
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