Fujifilm have kept to the overall look of the previous x700 series compact digital cameras but handed the body design to F.A. Porsche, grandson of Prof. Ferdinand Porsche who's design studios have brought us stylish watches, pens, kettles, toasters and hair dryers. And they've done an equally good job on the 6800Z, probably one of the best looking digital cameras on the market (along with Canon's Digital IXUS 300 / S300). Probably one of the most distinguishing single design elements is the new "burred" metallic mode dial which sits proudly at the top rear of the camera and has an excellent quality feel.
Build quality is overall very good, the camera feels solid with no noticeable creaks or rattles, buttons have a good feel, my only niggle would be the fact that the pop-up flash doesn't fit flush into the body and appears to be made from a slightly different material (though is still cool to the touch, suggesting metal).
As you can see the 6800Z isn't that much bigger than Canon's Digital IXUS 300 and yet Fujifilm have managed to squeeze a larger (2.0") LCD display and status display LCD on the rear of the camera.
As with the 4700Z I have problems gripping the 6800Z firmly, when you first grab it your thumb naturally wants to rest right over the glass display panel, it takes a little adjustment to slide the whole camera upwards in your grip so that your thumb sits in the indentation on the back, this also helps your forefinger grip the front "bulge". All in all it's sufficient for holding the camera but certainly doesn't provide a stable grip for slow shutter / low light shots.
Main LCD Display
Display Panel LCD
As with almost all compact digital cameras the 6800Z's viewfinder is a disappointment, a very small, narrow view, you get a cropped and distorted view of the scene. The small center circle indicates the center of frame / focus spot, the viewfinder does have parallax correction lines which indicate the top corner of the frame for close range shots (less than 1.5 m / 4.8 ft).
The light beside the viewfinder indicate:
|Green Steady||Camera ready to shoot|
|Green Blinking||Auto Focus / Auto Exposure in progress / Shake warning|
|Green / Orange Blinking||Recording to SmartMedia|
|Orange Steady||Smartmedia activity / image writing|
|Orange Blinking||Flash charging / USB communication|
|Red Steady||SmartMedia error / Lens error|
Battery & Compartment
The 6800Z uses the NP-80 Lithium-Ion battery which we saw on the 2700Z / 2900Z / 4900Z and have seen (with a different label) on other digital cameras (Kodak DC4800). The battery compartment is accessed by sliding a small door in the base of the camera. The battery provides 1100 mAh into 3.7 V and is charged in-camera by simply placing the camera into the supplied cradle (described below).