Fujifilm Finepix F31fd Review
In the fast-moving, 'bigger better faster' world of the digital compact the Fujifilm FinePix F30 will be one of the rare few that are remembered after they have gone (the nearest this throwaway business gets to a 'classic'). The reason this unassuming, blocky little camera stands out from the scores of other cameras launched last year - and why it has a mantelpiece covered in industry awards - is simple; image quality, or more specifically, high ISO performance. The F30's low light capabilities come from a combination of clever technology (Super CCD and Real Photo Processor) and a 'swimming against the tide' attitude to specification, which means a bigger sensor with fewer pixels. The F30 also, against all the odds, actually sold pretty well, going against the conventional wisdom that consumers buy on pixel counts alone. Although it has its share of faults the F30 became the benchmark by which all compact cameras in the 6-8 megapixel sector were judged. The excellent battery life and high speed performance certainly helped too.
Now we have the F30's replacement, the F31fd - an upgrade so minor that we would not normally even bother to review it (the only spec changes are a Face Detection function and infra-red communication). But such is the continuing level of interest in the F30 that it would be remiss not to update the review for the new model, and that is what we have done - the majority of this review is taken word-for-word from the F30 review, but the image samples are all new, and all the tests have been re-done.
In 2007 the market has, inevitably, moved on again, with 8,10 and even 12 megapixels common in even fairly inexpensive compacts, so the F31fd will have an even tougher job competing for attention, and we were interested to see how it stacks up against the latest generation of high resolution compacts; all boasting 'high ISO' capabilities - on paper at least. We were also interested to see if the internal changes (the sensor is the same but the F31fd has a new version of the Real Photo Processor) had upset the fine balance of hardware and processing that made the F30 what it was. We'll start, as ever, with the headline specification:
- Face Detection Technology built-in to the camera’s processor
- Real Photo Processor II and new Super CCD HR VI
- ISO 3200 sensitivity at full resolution
- 6.3 million pixels
- 3.0x optical zoom
- Long-life battery (up to 580 shots)
- IR Communication (IR simple™)
- VGA movie capture of 30 frames per second with sound
- PictBridge™ compatible for direct printing without a PC
- Quick response times (0.01 second shutter lag and 1.5 second start-up)
- Aperture and shutter priority modes
Changes over the F30
Where the F30 was quite a leap forward from the F10/F11, the F31fd, as mentioned above, is a pretty minor, incremental upgrade to the F30. The biggest change is the processor, which has been upgraded to the latest Real Photo Processor II. As well as minor image processing changes the RPP II processor also brings Fuji's hardware-based Face Detection technology to the F31fd. Aside from a slight color change and a redesigned grip the only other difference is that the new camera - like most of Fuji's new models - sports IrSimple - a fast infrared comms system that allows you to wirelessly share pictures with other F31fd users and use print kiosks without removing the card. Not exactly what we'd call a key feature.
FinePix F31fd specifications
|Street price|| US: $290
|Body Material||Metal and plastic|
• 1/1.7" Super CCD HR
• 2848 x 2136
|Movie clips||• 640 x 480 @30fps
• 320 x 240 @30fps
• with Monaural sound
|File formats||• JPEG (Exif 2.2)
• Movie: AVI (Motion JPEG)
|Lens||• 36-108mm equiv
• 3x optical zoom
|Digital zoom||Up to 6.2x|
|Focus||AF with Macro|
|AF area modes||
|AF assist lamp||Yes|
|Focus distance||• Normal: 60cm-infinity
• Macro: 5cm (wide)
|Metering||256- zone TTL (Multi, Spot, Average)|
|ISO sensitivity||• Auto
• ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
• ISO 800
• ISO 1600
• ISO 3200
|Exposure compensation|| +/- 2 EV
1/3 EV steps
|Shutter speed|| 3 - 1/2000 (Manual Program)
3 - 1/1000 (Aperture/Shutter Priority)
1 -15 sec in Night Mode
|Aperture|| Wide: F2.8 - 8
Tele: F5.0 - 8
• Program AE
• Aperture Priority
• Shutter Priority
|Scene modes||• Natural light
• Natural light with flash
• Flower close-up
|White balance||• Auto
• Fluorescent light (Daylight)
• Fluorescent light (Warm white)
• Fluorescent light (Cool white)
• Incandescent light
|White balance fine tune||None|
|Self timer||10 / 2 secs|
|Continuous shooting||2.2fps max 3 images|
|Image parameters||• Standard
• Chrome (vivid)
|Flash||• Auto / Intelligent flash mode / Red eye reduction / Forced flash / Suppressed flash / Slow synch / Red eye reduction & Slow synch
• Range (Wide): approx. 60 cm-6.5 m (2.0 ft.-21.3 ft.)
• Range (Tele): approx. 60 cm-3.5 m (2.0 ft.-11.5 ft.)
• Range (Macro): approx. 30 cm-80 cm (1.0 ft.-2.6 ft.)
|LCD monitor||• 2.5-inch
• 230,000 pixels
• Anti-glare/low reflection
|Connectivity||• USB 2.0 high speed
• Video out
|Storage||• 10MB internal memory
• xD-Picture Card
|Power||• NP-95 Li-ion battery
• AC adapter AC-5VC included
|Weight (no batt)||155 g (5.5 oz)|
|Dimensions||92.7 x 56.7 x 27.8 mm (3.6 x 2.2 x 1.1 in)|
The new compression standard is set to reduce video file sizes by half to save space and speed-up transmission, paving the way for more portable 8K footage.
Sony recently confirmed plans to launch a successor to the video-centric a7S II. We don't even know the name of the camera, but Jordan already has a feature wish list for the new 'a7S III' – and it doesn't include 8K.
The Profot B10 is the first studio flash system that can be used when shooting with an iPhone camera.
The Pixii camera is an interesting little rangefinder camera that features a 12MP APS-C sensor and lacks a rear LCD display, opting instead to pair with your mobile device, which can be used to view and transfer images.
Sirui is launching an Indiegogo campaign for a wide-angle answer to its existing 50mm F1.8 anamorphic lens. The 35mm APS-C lens will come in a Micro Four Thirds mount with adapters for other systems.
Sony has added a 12-24mm F2.8 to its top-shelf 'G Master' series of lenses. It's the widest constant F2.8 zoom currently offered for full-frame, with a hefty price tag to match: it will sell for $3000 when it ships in mid-August.
Take a look at the view from Sony's new ultra-wide F2.8 zoom – we paired it with the a7R IV for some initial shooting.
Canon's EOS-1D X Mark III is one of the best DSLRs ever made. With fast burst speeds, great video quality and impressive autofocus, the 1D X III is equal parts cinema rig and sports shooter. Find out how it fares against steep competition in our full review.
Nikon Rumors is reporting that Nikon will announce successors to its Z6 and Z7 camera systems by the end of the calendar year.
Canon says the event, set to take place at 14:00 CEST in two days on July 9, will be its 'biggest product launch yet.'
The Verge Video Director, Becca Farsace, shows how she built a custom Raspberry Pi camera with effectively zero coding knowledge over the course of just three days.
The EOS R5 has been in the works for some time, and Canon has published a handful of specifications, but there's still plenty we don't know. What are you hoping to see from Canon's forthcoming flagship camera?
Canon's CE-SAT-IB satellite camera was destroyed alongside six other satellites during Rocket Lab's ironically-named 'Pics or It Didn't Happen Mission.'
This sample gallery includes images from our recent review of the Tamron 28-200mm F2.8-5.6 Di III RXD zoom lens. Check out these photos to see how it performs, from wide-angle to telephoto and everything in between.
The Tamron 28-200mm F2.8-5.6 Di III RXD provides a wide zoom range in compact, weather-sealed design. Find out why it's Chris and Jordan's new favorite travel lens.
Kodak Portra 800 is a wonderful and versatile color film. And any rumors of it being discontinued, we're pleased to report, are simply untrue. That's a good thing, because it's capable of producing lovely results in all sorts of conditions.
Boering has left the World Press Photo without much of an explanation from either him or the organization, but he tells DPReview the COVID-19 pandemic is forcing the WPP to change the way it makes money.
The standard-size deck of playing cards features unique photography-oriented artwork and act as cheat sheets for photographers.
The Sony ZV-1 and Panasonic Lumix DC-G100 are the first cameras we've seen that are overtly designed with vlogging in mind – and the changes they represent could have implications for the future of all cameras.
The utility allows the E-M1X, E-M1, E-M1 Mark II, E-M1 Mark III and E-M5 Mark II cameras to be used with video conferencing apps over USB.
Olympus is showing final images of its under-development 150-400mm F4.5, which it says will arrive this winter. An unspecified macro and 8-25mm F4 Pro have also been added to the lens roadmap, and the E-M1X's AF gains bird detection.
The scam, which involves sending fake copyright violation notices, has been circulating on the social media platform since at least June 9.
Fujifilm is one of just two producers of tape media (the other being Sony) and it is hard at work on a breakthrough that will allow single tape storage drives to offer 400TB capacities in the coming years.
The National Parks Service says it's investigating the incident, which took place just two days after the park opened following a shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Professional full frame lenses are usually large and have fast apertures. In this episode of DPReview TV, Chris and Jordan argue that there's a need for slow professional lenses – inspired by some of their favorite Micro Four Thirds lenses.
The camera maker joins Olympus, Fujifilm and others is a legal tussle over US digital camera technology patents held by DigiMedia Tech.
NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) photographs the sun every 0.75 seconds. In its first decade in space, the SDO has captured more than 425 million images of the sun. NASA has compiled these images into an amazing time lapse, come check it out.
The lens is available for Leica M, Sony FE, Nikon Z and L-mount camera systems, and now holds the title as the world's widest rectilinear lens for full-frame camera systems.
Tamron's new 28-200mm F2.8-5.6 is a versatile zoom lens for Sony E-mount. Well-suited for travel photography, it's compact, lightweight, and fast/quiet to focus.
Fujifilm has announced that its GF 30mm F3.5 R WR wide-angle lens for its medium format cameras will ship in late July or early August.