The Fuji Finepix S8100FD is a standard super zoom digital camera. It has a fairly typical set of features for this type of camera including manual exposure controls, image stabilisation and face detection technology. It has 10 megapixels, an 18x optical zoom lens and a 2.5 inch LCD screen. There is also an electronic viewfinder.
Why Buy The Fuji Finepix S8100fd
The Finepix S8100 is a mid range super zoom camera. It is cheaper than other similar models and the chance to save a few pounds may well help to make your mind up in its favour.
Image Quality - See Sample Images Below
Outdoor Scenic Shots in Good Light
The first outdoor shot confirms that you should be able to produce bright, colourful scenic shots with the Finepix S8100fd. The camera handles sun glare a little better than some similar cameras have managed in my tests.
With parts of the scene very distant many digital cameras find this test harder than any other test shot. The Finepix S8100fd finds it hard going to show detail even where the scene is less distant. Although a wide angle lens is a help when it comes to squeezing wide scenes into shots, this type of picture is not one of the strengths of this camera.
Purple fringing is a common problem amongst digital cameras with long zoom lenses. As I have seen with other Fuji digital cameras in this series the Finepix S8100fd suffers more from purple fringing than other super zoom models do. This will not be an issue with smaller prints, but if you are planning to blow your prints up you may find you need to clean up the problem with a package such as Adobe Photoshop.
When it comes to focusing and overall definition in the shot the results are inline with those produced by many super zoom digitals without quite matching up to the best models. You can achieve sharper focus if you are prepared to pay a bit more for your camera than you can with the Finepix S8100fd.
There is not too much to report with this picture. Colour balance and focusing are good. The skin tones have a natural look.
This is a good effort. The flash light spreads out evenly across the picture. Focusing is sharp. All of these points suggest you should be able to take decent portrait shots with flash.
Without flash the definition is not perfect as a small amount of noise shows in the photo. This is something that happens with many digital cameras and you are likely to have to revert to using flash almost as soon as the available light starts to fall.
If you are not sure whether you will achieve the best results with or without flash there is a natural light plus flash setting. This takes two photos allowing you to choose the best one.
Macro, Colours and Noise
Super zoom digital cameras tend to take better quality macro shots than smaller, pocket sized models. The Finepix S8100fd is capable of producing good quality close up shots. There is a high level of detail showing in my test shot.
The Finepix S8100fd has produced strong colours throughout by tests.
At ISO 400 picture quality is better than I am used to seeing and noise control is good in the brighter areas of the photo in particular. Stepping up to ISO 1600 is a different story and most of the picture quality has disappeared.
In terms of picture quality the Finepix S8100fd sits somewhere in the mid rank of super zoom digital cameras. I have no serious complaints about picture quality, but there are one or two areas where it could do better.
The design of super zoom digital cameras is pretty standard. The majority are based on the design of Digital SLRs. With this camera I like the rubber grip on the front and back of the camera. It just helps that little bit when it comes to holding the camera steady. The camera fits my hand very well.
Shutter Lag Times
Single Shot With Flash
Five Shots With Flash
Turn on Time
Ease of Use
Any camera with manual controls will be more difficult to use than a more straightforward point and shoot camera. Even so there is nothing especially frightening about this one. The menus are easy to follow, if a little fiddly.
Points I Like
Close in macro focusing - feel of camera in the hand - value for money
Where it Could Improve
Nothing stands out
The Fuji Finepix S8100 is a bit cheaper than many of its competitors. Taking this into account when looking at the quality of the photos it produces means it offers decent value for money. There is not a great deal to choose between a lot of these super zoom cameras and I am sure this camera will sell well.
Top Rated Cameras in this Category
Panasonic DMC FZ48 Rating 87/100
The Panasonic Lumix DMC FZ48 is very hard to beat. It is up against some stiff competition, but the combination of features, image quality and pricing makes it the outstanding model in its category. When it comes to picture quality it has few weaknesses and its length of lens means it can cope with more or less any photo opportunity.
Read Review: Panasonic DMC FZ48 Review
Fuji Finepix HS30EXR Rating 86/100
The Fuji Finepix HS30EXR does offer a number of differences to rival Super Zoom or Bridge digital cameras. The main difference is the twisting lens barrel, but there are other handling aspects that make it that bit closer to a Digital SLR experience. In terms of features Fuji have packed in just about everything they can think of. Picture quality compares well against rival cameras and shutter response times are also impressive. This makes this camera a very attractive proposition if you are looking for a fully featured camera with a great deal of zoom power.
Read Review: Fuji Finepix HS30EXR Review
Canon Powershot SX40 HS Rating 85/100
Your decision to buy the Canon Powershot SX40 HS is likely to be based on whether or not you prefer the simplicity and lower price of a digital camera with a fixed lens or whether you prefer the ultimate flexibility of a Digital SLR. If you prefer a camera where one lens covers just about all photo opportunities then the Powershot SX40 HS is hard to beat. There are no real issues with picture quality and it has a set of features that few other models can match. Recommended.
Read Review: Canon Powershot SX40 HS Review