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Compared to... Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ18 and Olympus SP-560UZ

Below you will find a studio comparison between the Fujifilm Finepix S8000fd, the Panasonic DMC-FZ18 and the Olympus SP-560UZ at ISO 400.

Studio scene comparison (@ ISO 400)

  • Fujifilm FinePix S8000fd: Aperture Priority mode, ISO 400, Default Image Parameters, Manual white balance, +0.67 EV compensation

  • Panasonic DMC-FZ18: Aperture Priority mode, ISO 400, Default Image Parameters, Manual white balance, +0.66 EV compensation

  • Olympus SP-560UZ : Aperture Priority mode, ISO 400, Default Image Parameters, Manual white balance, +0.7 EV compensation
     
  • Lighting: Daylight simulation, >98% CRI
Fujifilm S8000fd
Panasonic DMC-FZ18
Olympus SP-560UZ

ISO 400, 1/220 sec, F4.5

ISO 400, 1/250 sec, F4.5

ISO 400, 1/320 sec, F4.5
3,447 KB JPEG
3,189 KB JPEG
2,530 KB JPEG

At ISO 400 all three cameras are suffering from the effects of noise - and more importantly of noise reduction, which means fine detail is taking quite a hit. At first glance the Fuji appears to have more noise in its shot than the Panasonic but closer inspection shows that it has also sacrificed less detail to NR. The Olympus, meanwhile, is starting to show little hints of both Chroma and Luminance noise and is losing texture to noise reduction.

The trade-off between distracting noise and overly-smoothed noise reduction requires a good sense of balance and it's arguably the Fuji that is walking the high-wire most confidently at this point. You're not going to see a huge difference in a standard sized print - all are 'usable' rather than really 'useful' at ISO 400, but that's what you get with such a small sensor.

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