Fuji Finepix Z2 Review

Ultra Compact

Picture
Fuji Finepix Z2 Ease of Use 8
Features 7
Movie Mode 8
Build Quality9
Colours 8
Photo Quality 8
Style 9
Lowlight 7
Macro 8
Value for Money 7
5 Megapixels
3x Zoom
2.5 inch LCD Screen
90 x 55 x 18.6mm
130g

Overview

The Fuji Finepix Z2 is a five megapixel digital camera. It is small and slim. This is the type of camera that you can easily slip into a pocket or small bag. The Finepix Z2 is straightforward point and shoot model making it easy to use. It is likely to appeal to someone who is looking for a camera that can be taken anywhere and takes no time at all to get used to.

Main Features

Megapixels:
Zoom:
LCD Screen:
Dimensions:
Weight:

5
3x
2.5 inches
90 x 55 x 18.6mm
130g

Macro:
HD Movies:
Manual Controls:
Batteries:
Memory Cards:

8cm
No
No
Lithium-ion Rechargeable
xD

Image Quality

On the whole I was pleased with the quality of the images I managed to produce with the Finepix Z2. The camera had no problem focusing in standard lighting conditions and the colours are strong. Although there is a slight fall off in sharpness towards the edge of each photo this is typical of this type of digital camera and is nothing to be overly concerned about with this camera.

Starting with the outdoor test photos the camera handled these well. The photos are an accurate reflection of the conditions at the time the photos were taken. Whereas some digital cameras can struggle with areas of light and dark the Finepix Z2 was able to cope with this. It also had no problem with glare from the sun. Sky colours are a pleasant shade of blue. This all suggests that if you are planning to use this camera primarily for landscape type photos you should not encounter too many difficulties.

Both the indoor and outdoor portraits are successful in terms of skin colour, sharpness and brightness. There is also no red eye in the indoor portrait. There is something that troubles me with these shots though and that is there is a degree of pixilation. This is where the photos are not completely smooth in certain areas and you can notice a jagged look in certain areas. This certainly detracts from the overall quality of the pictures.

My other indoor test shot of some beer bottles is taken in almost complete darkness. This is a picture the camera truly struggles with. Most digital cameras have an Autofocus Illuminator. This casts a beam of light onto the subject and helps the camera to focus. The Finepix Z2 does not have one and is unable to focus properly when the light is very low. The result is a shot clearly out of focus.

By way of contrast the macro shot works very well indeed. It is bright and sharp, comparing favourably against those taken by other similar digital cameras.

The dedicated test for colour is another photo to create a positive impression. The colours are deep and vivid with no single colour dominating.

All digital cameras tend to lose quality when the ISO rating is increased. This is often referred to as noise. Using a higher ISO rating can help when taking pictures in lowlight or if you are trying to reduce blur when you are taking a picture of a moving target. The Finepix Z2 does lose quality when the ISO rating is pushed up to 400, but it is a lot better than the majority of digital cameras. In fact you can push the ISO rating all the way up to 1600 with this camera and the picture it takes compares nicely with other cameras where the ISO rating has only been push up to 400.

See sample images link arrow

Shutter Lag and Recycling Times

I managed to take a single shot in 0.33 seconds. This is an average time. It took 6.74 seconds to take five consecutive shots. This works out at a rate of one photo every 1.55 seconds. This is a fast time.

You can compare this camera to other models by taking a look at the Shutter Lag Comparison Table.

Features

The 3x optical zoom lens has a focal length equivalent to 36 to 108mm in 35mm format. The maximum aperture size is f3.5 - f4.2. For close up photography the lens can focus from 8cms. There is also a digital zoom feature. This gives an extra 5.7x zoom capability.

For composing images there is a 2.5" LCD screen. This is made up of around 232,000 pixels. There is no room for a viewfinder.

To help make picture taking easier there are a number of predefined scene modes. All you need to do is select the most appropriate scene for the picture you are taking and the camera will select the optimum settings. The scenes available are Portrait, Landscape, Sports, Night Scene and Natural Light. There is also a continuous shooting mode for when you would like to fire off a number of shots in quick succession.

The flash unit has a maximum range of 3m. This falls to around 2.3m when the zoom lens is in use. The flash modes available are Auto, Red-eye Reduction, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Synchro. Red-eye Reduction + Slow Synchro.

For when you would like to appear in the picture yourself there is a self timer. The delay time can be set to either two or ten seconds. To help preserve the memory of a shot you can add a voice memo to a photograph after it has been taken. The maximum length of the voice memo is up to thirty seconds.

There are a number of different resolutions you can take pictures at. This could be useful if you are looking to take pictures for use on the Internet or to send by email. There is also a resolution with a 3:2 aspect ratio. This is useful if you are planning to make 6x4" prints as this is the perfect shape and the photo will not need to be trimmed at all to fit on the paper.

To add something different to your photos you can shoot in black and white or chrome.

You can shoot movies up to the capacity of the memory card. The maximum resolution is 640 x 480. The maximum speed is 30 frames per second. This should be good enough for playback on a television set. Sound is recorded with a movie, but you cannot zoom in and out while shooting.

More advanced settings include shutter speeds in the range of 4 seconds to 1/1000 seconds, multi zone metering, ISO sensitivity equivalent to 64, 100, 200, 400, 800 and 1600. There are also a number of white balance settings (Fine, Shade, Fluorescent light(Daylight),Fluorescent light(Warm White) Fluorescent light(Cool White) and Incandescent light).

Fuji supplies all cables and software to connect the Finepix Z2 to a computer, television set and PictBridge compatible printer.

A cradle is supplied with the camera too. The camera needs to be placed in the cradle before it can be connected to the external devices mentioned above. The cradle is also used when you wish to use a tripod. This is a bit of a drawback to be honest. The camera is a little loose in the cradle. This is even more of a problem if you are shooting a portrait picture with the camera upright as it is liable to fall out of the cradle. This is certainly an important point if you are planning to use the camera with a tripod.

Ease of Use

There is nothing particularly difficult about the Finepix Z2. Being a standard point and shoot type model there are not too many features that you need to get to grips with. All the main controls such as zoom, flash, self timer and image review are controlled through buttons on the back of the camera. The menu system is also fairly straightforward, although in my opinion the screens are a little cramped.

Cost

You can pick up a Fuji Finepix Z2 for around £225. This compares to around £215 for a Canon IXUS 55, £210 for a Sony DSC T5 and £200 for a Pentax Optio S5z.

This makes the Finepix Z2 one of the most expensive five megapixel digital cameras. To be honest although it has many plus points I think some of its competitors offer better value for money.

Style

The Finepix Z2 has a very simple design. I must admit to really liking the clean style of the camera. It is available in black and white and I am personally quite taken by the black one. The lens is non protruding and is protected by a large sliding cover.

The camera weighs 130g and has dimensions of 90.0 x 55.0 x 18.6mm.

Batteries and Memory Cards

A rechargeable lithium ion battery is used to provide power to the camera. Fuji supplies both a battery and charger with the Finepix Z2. The downside to this type of battery is that a spare battery is more expensive than a set of AA batteries. Therefore you may decide it is best to just make sure the battery is always fully charged before you set off to take any important photos.

Images are stored on xD Picture cards. A 16mb card is supplied as standard. I was able to take 13 photos using the default settings before the memory card became full. This means it is a good idea to pick up a high capacity card to go with the camera. Click here to save money on xD cards..

Points I like:

Style and design
Low noise at high ISO

Where it is not so hot:

Pixilation of pictures

Summary

There is a lot to like about the Fuji Finepix Z2. It has a very stylish design and is easy to use. There are now a large number of digital cameras to choose from if you are looking for a pocket sized camera. At its current price I feel it is a bit expensive and better value can be found elsewhere.

Fuji Finepix Z2 Front View Fuji Finepix Z2 Front View

Fuji Finepix Z2 Back View Fuji Finepix Z2 Back View

Fuji Finepix Z2 Top View Fuji Finepix Z2 Top View

Sample Menus

Fuji Finepix Z2 White Balance Fuji Finepix Z2 iso

Fuji Finepix Z2 setup menu Fuji Finepix Z2 scene modes

Top Rated Cameras in this Category

Canon IXUS 510 HS Rating 86/100

If you are prepared to pay a bit more for extra quality then the Canon IXUS 510 HS is likely to be of interest to you. For a pocket camera picture quality is very good. Add in the impressive set of features including a touch screen and Wi-Fi and you can start to see that you do get more for your money compared to a lot of digital cameras. The power of the lens also gives you plenty of scope for capturing a wide range of photo opportunities. It is true you pay a little extra than with more standard pocket cameras, but if you also include the stylish look of this model there is a lot on offer for the price tag.

Read Review: Canon IXUS 510 HS Review

Canon IXUS 125 HS Rating 86/100

If you are looking for a pocket camera and you are prepared to pay extra for picture quality and build quality then the Canon IXUS 125 HS is a good choice. Although it doesn’t have all the latest features like 360 degree panoramas it does an excellent job when it comes to taking pictures. It is straightforward, easy to use and will fit into just about any pocket.

Read Review: Canon IXUS 125 HS Review

Canon IXUS 1100 HS Rating 85/100

The Canon IXUS 1100 HS is a very good choice if you are looking for a pocket digital camera with a combination of a longer zoom lens and touch control. Once you get used to the screen and improve your touch accuracy it responds well. Picture quality compares favourably with other pocket cameras. The style and build suggest a bit of extra class too. The IXUS 1100 HS ticks most of the boxes for a camera in this category.

Read Review: Canon IXUS 1100 HS Review

Related Pages

Fuji Finepix Z2 Review Fuji Finepix Z2 Specification Fuji Finepix Z2 Sample Images Fuji Digital Cameras

Best Deals



Read a Review



Photography Courses

photography courses

Search By Price

Digital Cameras Under £50
Digital Cameras £50 - £100
Digital Cameras £100 - £150
Digital Cameras £150 - £200
Digital Cameras £200 - £300
Digital Cameras £300 - £500
Digital Cameras £500 - £1000
Digital Cameras Over £1000

Search By Camera Type

Simple and Easy Digital Cameras
Pocket Sized Digital Cameras
Extra Zoom Digital Cameras
Super Zoom Digital Cameras
Advanced Digital Cameras
Waterproof Digital Cameras
Compact System Cameras
Digital SLRs

Search By Camera Brand

Canon Digital Cameras
Fuji Digital Cameras
Nikon Digital Cameras
Olympus Digital Cameras
Panasonic Digital Cameras
Sony Digital Cameras

Buyers Guides

Digital Cameras
Memory Cards
Digital SLRs
Major Features
Shutter Times
Batteries
Where to Buy

More Guides

Local Guides

All Local Guides
England
English Counties
London Locations
Northern Ireland
Scotland
Wales

News Feeds

XML RSS My MSN My Yahoo