Excerpt: The Fujifilm FinePix S100 is one of the most comprehensive superzooms available in the market. I am quite impressed with what the camera can manage. Featuring one of the best feature sets in the business, in true Fujifilm style, this comes as close to a cheap SLR as possible. It's quite bulky even by entry-level dSLR standards, at 133 x 94 x 150 mm, and pretty heavy too at 918g. That said, the company's taken care to build an easy-on-the-wrist form factor.
Conclusion: With the price of DSLRs dropping all the time, the justification for bridge cameras between compacts and full-grown DSLRs looks increasingly weak. The S100FS makes a game job of proving that there is still room for such a camera. It represents an awful lot of camera for comparatively little money and one that is more flexible than a DSLR kit for the same outlay. Its feature set, including very respectable RAW performance and dynamic range optimization is impressive.
Pros: Very useful zoom range, Excellent resolution and good edge to edge detail, Sharp, generally high-quality lens, Expanded dynamic range option (and it works), Excellent high-ISO performance for a non-DSLR, Full photographic control, huge range of SLR-like features (real SLR-like handling too), Bright, sharp, electronic viewfinder (better than most) and articulated screen, Macro modes make lens even more flexible, Fast RAW performance, RAW processing software included, A...
Cons: Strong, visible chromatic aberration at the most useful focal lengths, Noise reduction attacks fine detail if you look too close, 230 shot battery life somewhat limiting, Film simulation rarely useful, RAW processing software is unusable, Electronic viewfinder glitches if you pan the camera too quickly, Continuous shooting buffer not as large as on latest entry-level DSLRs, Unnecessarily large RAW files (23MB each)
Summary: As it turns out, we are indeed being fair to Fujifilm. The S100FS resolves many of the complaints I had with previous all-in-one, fixed-lens DSLR-type cameras. The camera is reasonably fast, performs well at higher ISO settings, and has extended dynamic range to prevent loss of highlight details due to overexposure. The limitations of this camera turned out to be quite minor and partially unavoidable based on the design.
Pros: Shooting speed and responsiveness similar to DSLR, Usable ISO performance even at high sensitivities, Consistent auto focus across the lens range, Amazing dynamic range, similar to DSLR, Huge zoom range; reasonably fast apertures throughout, Amazing high-speed flash sync performance
Cons: Slow from initial power-on to first shot, Macro focus isn't easy outside of the "sweet spot", Bloated menu system is sometimes difficult to navigate, 400 percent dynamic range mode limited to ISO 400, Some lens faults show up in your images, A little expensive compared to entry-level DSLRs
Summary: FinePix S100FS (Film Simulation) digital camera, its most advanced SLR-styled camera to date. The FinePix S100FS provides an all-in-one solution for photo enthusiasts and advanced amateur photographers seeking the manual controls and functionality of a Digital-SLR, without the hassle and expense of additional lenses and other accessories.
Summary: The Fuji Finepix S100FS is an outstanding camera with unique features for its class such as expanded dynamic range and film simulation. It also features a mechanical zoom covering a 14.3X range from a 28mm wide-angle to a 400mm super-telephoto. This camera does nearly everything and does most things well. We have a few quibbles with it, listed under Cons to the right, nothing serious though.
Pros: Mechanical wide angle 14.3X zoom lens, Low image noise, Excellent dynamic range, Flexible rendition of image colors, Great lens sharpness, Good white-balance, Effective stabilization, Very short shutter-lag, Excellent macro mode, Good ergonomics, Good build quality
Cons: Pronounced chromatic aberrations, LCD does not always show correct exposure, Focus speeds not on par with camera price, Playback mode ignores buttons while info is not displayed, Slow to flush buffer, AF-On only works in MF, No white-balance button, Slow to wake-up after auto-off, Tiny viewfinder, Short battery-life, Competition from DSLRs
Conclusion: Fujifilm FinePix S100fs digital megazoom camera The market for the so-called bridge cameras is very much under pressure due to the DSLR cameras becoming cheaper and cheaper. And yet the bridge cameras are obviously in favour, especially when they have a huge zoom range. It's quite clear that a camera offering an all-round zoom range puts less weight and costs on you than a similar DSLR camera. Fujifilm have broad experience and has been active for years in this segment.
Excerpt: The Fuji FinePix S100fs ($799) is one of the more unique fixed-lens
cameras on the market today. It features a larger-than-normal (2/3"),
11.1 Megapixel SuperCCD HR sensor, which (at least in theory) should give it
better low light and high ISO performance than other compact cameras. The other
"big" feature on the S100fs is its impressive lens: it covers an
incredible range of 28 - 400 mm, and it has optical image stabilization, too.
Pros: Very good photo quality; outperforms other super zooms at high ISOs by at least a full stop (though see issues below), Whopping 14.3X, 28 - 400 mm zoom lens, Optical image stabilization, SLR-like body has excellent build quality; easy to hold; manual zoom and focus rings, Articulating 2.5" LCD display with good outdoor & low light visibility, Effective dynamic range expansion feature (though ISO sensitivity goes up, too), Redeye not a problem thanks to auto removal fe...
Cons: Lots of purple fringing; SuperCCD tends to smudge fine details a bit, Expensive for a fixed-lens camera, Below average battery life, Awkward manual focus system, Full shutter speed range not available in shutter priority mode, Very slow RAW editing software, Buttons are scattered all over the body, require user to search for them, Not much built-in memory
Summary: This Fujifilm FinePix S100fs Review is based on a production
model. All sample images are unretouched, except
where specified. The Fujifilm FinePix S100fs is the "almost DSLR" Super Zoom. Not only does it handle and feel like a DSLR, it is also easy enough in point-and-shoot mode to obtain high quality images that are properly exposed and with pleasant colors.