The Fuji Finepix S1500 is a compact digital camera offering extra zoom. It has 10 megapixels and a 12x optical zoom lens. In terms of design it falls between two stools. It is not as large as cameras offering extreme zoom, but it is not as small as many cameras offering around the same amount of zoom. Key features include manual exposure controls, image stabilisation and a 2.7 inch LCD screen.
Why Buy The Fuji Finepix S1500
When it comes to price this camera is a step down from digital camera with extreme zoom lenses. This means it gives you the chance to buy a digital camera with extra zoom and a good set of features at a reasonable price.
102.5 x 73 x 67.8mm
AA * 4
Image Quality - See Sample Images Below
Outdoor Scenic Shots in Good Light
One point that is noticeable immediately is that the larger lens is able to control sun glare so much better than the lenses you find on smaller compact digital cameras. The colours are also accurate too. I am also happy with the level of detail and definition in the photo.
As I have noticed with other Fuji digital cameras the Finepix S1500 can fire off the occasional darker image. This does not happen often, but it is impossible to know when it is going to occur. This picture is darker than it should be when you take into account it was taken on a very bright, sunny day.
The perennial purple fringing problem that I see with long lenses is controlled well by the Finepix S1500. It will not be until you blow prints up to above A4 size that it will show in most cases. Even then it will only be noticeable in difficult conditions.
Compared to other super zoom cameras the Finepix S1500 just falls into the second level when it comes to sharpness of more distant subjects. This becomes increasingly important if you are planning to make larger prints.
When it comes to colours this photo has quite a strong, orange glow to it. I took this photo using a white balance setting of shady as the picture was taken in the shade. In this instance it has left the picture a little overcooked.
This is a very encouraging effort. The Finepix S1500 has produced a very natural looking shot. This has been achieved by the camera producing a very subtle burst of flash light.
Without flash being used noise levels are kept relatively low. Skin tones are slightly pinker than they should be, but otherwise the picture compares well with other cameras for this test.
Macro, Colours and Noise
As I mentioned with my first test shot a lens with a physically larger size normally leads to better picture quality. My macro shot is another example of this. If you are interested in close up work this type of camera is a good choice.
I like the colours the Finepix S1500 produces. Aside from the outdoor portrait they have a very natural look to them.
Noise levels at ISO 400 are roughly what I am used to seeing. If you go higher than that you find the colours start to break down.
Overall the Finepix S1500 puts in a decent performance. It does not quite hit the heights of the top of the range super zoom cameras, but then again it does not cost as much as the more advanced models.
The camera looks like a mini Digital SLR camera. It has a good sized grip to help hold the camera steady.
Shutter Lag Times
Single Shot With Flash
Five Shots With Flash
Turn on Time
Ease of Use
Obviously there are extra features to get to know, but everything is easy to find.
Points I Like
Shutter lag times - viewfinder - zoom in while shooting a movie
Where it Could Improve
Distant shots could be that bit sharper.
The Fuji Finepix S1500 is a little bit of a throwback. Many other brands have introduced smaller compacts with a similar amount of zoom. This camera retains the more traditional body shape. There is a lot to like about this camera and I think it offers fair value for money.
Top Rated Cameras in this Category
Nikon Coolpix S9300 Rating 86/100
For a camera that is small enough to take anywhere the Nikon Coolpix S9300 has a lot of features packed into it. If you are planning to take a holiday GPS tracking will tell you where you were when a picture was taken. The length of the zoom lens also gives you plenty of scope when it comes to picture opportunities. Although there is plenty of completion in this category the picture quality on offer here combined with the features makes this camera very attractive indeed. Recommended.
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Canon Powershot SX260 HS Rating 86/100
The Canon Powershot SX260 HS is one of the very best digital cameras in this category. In fact if you are happy to miss out on features such as 3D photography and 360 degree panoramas it is very hard to beat. It has a great set of features packed into its relatively compact body size and picture quality helps to make it stand out from the competition. Although it is one of the more expensive cameras in this field it still offers good value for money.
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Panasonic DMC SZ1 Rating 84/100
If you are looking for a simple, pocket camera that gives you some extra zoom and takes high quality snapshots the Panasonic Lumix DMC SZ1 is a very good choice. Compared to other cameras with similar features available at around the same price this camera has the edge when it comes to picture quality. It takes sharp, colourful photos and offers excellent value for money. Recommended.
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