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Fujifilm Finepix S6000fd / S6500fd Review

December 2006 | By Simon Joinson


Review based on a production Fujifilm Finepix S6500fd

Originally announced in July, but only just making its way onto the shelves in time for Christmas, the S6000fd is the latest in a long line of keenly-priced big zoom 'bridge cameras' from Fujifilm that can trace its roots back to 2001's FinePix 4900 Zoom. The new model has several key features of interest; top of the list being the 6.3MP, 1/1.7" Super CCD sensor used to wide acclaim in the F30 and F31fd and offering 'full resolution' shooting at up to ISO 3200. The S6000fd (known as the S6500fd in Europe) also has a different lens to its recent predecessors, sporting what appears to be the same 28-300mm equivalent 10.7x zoom as the S9100/9600. It's also the first camera to feature Fuji's hardware face detection - a feature so important that Fuji decided to append 'fd' to the camera's name. Elsewhere there's a comprehensive suite of photographic tools, raw mode, electronic viewfinder, 2.5" screen and VGA movie mode - all in a package that costs less than half what you'd pay for a budget SLR with a similar lens - and weighs less too. But is it any good? Let's find out!

Note: the S6000fd and S6500fd are the same camera; Fujifilm uses different names in different areas of the world. In this review we will refer to the camera as the S6000fd.

Headline features

  • Hardware based Face Detection technology
  • Sensitivity range of ISO 100-3200 for low-noise photography in all light situations
  • Super CCD HR VI sensor delivering six million effective pixels
  • Real Photo Processor II reduces noise and delivers enhanced color reproduction
  • Fixed 10.7x (28-300mm equivalent) optical zoom lens with twist barrel control
  • Intelligent Flash achieves the optimum combination of high sensitivity and natural skin tones
  • Manual, shutter- and aperture-priority and program exposure modes
  • Single, continuous and manual focus modes
  • Jpeg and RAW file formats
  • High Speed Shooting Mode with a shutter lag of just 0.035 seconds
  • High resolution 2.5 inch LCD screen with reinforced, scratch-resistant glass
  • TV-quality VGA movie recording of 30 frames per second with sound
  • PictBridge™ compatible for direct printing without a PC

S6000fd (S6500fd) Key specifications

Street price • US: $400
• UK: £300
Body Material Metal/Plastic
Sensor • 1/1.7" Type CCD
• 6.3 million pixels total
Image sizes • 2848 x 2136
• 3024 x 2016 (3:2)
• 2048 x 1536
• 1600 x 1200
• 640 x 480
Movie clips • 640 x 480 @ 30 fps
• 320 x 240 @ 30 fps
• AVI Motion JPEG with WAVE monaural audio
Lens

• 28 - 300 mm (35 mm equiv)
• F2.8 - F4.9
• 10.7x optical zoom
• Mechanically linked zoom ring

Focus

• TTL contrast-type autofocus
• Single / Continuous AF
• Manual focus / One-touch AF
• Focus lock
• 1-point AF (Center / Moveable)

Focus distance

• Normal: 40 cm (wide) / 2 m (tele) - Infinity
• Macro: 10 cm (wide) / 90 cm (tele)
• Super macro (wide only) 1 cm

Metering • TTL 256-zone metering
• Multi-area
• Average
Shutter speed

• 30-1/4000 sec (extremes depending on exposure mode)

Aperture • F2.8-F11 (wide)
• F4.9-F11 (tele)
Shooting mode • Auto
• Picture Stabilization (auto High ISO)
• Scene Position
• Macro
• Movie
• Continuous
Sensitivity • Auto
• ISO 100
• ISO 200
• ISO 400
• ISO 800
• ISO 1600
• ISO 3200
White Balance • Auto
• Fine
• Shade
• Fluorescent (daylight)
• Fluorescent (warm white)
• Fluorescent (cool white)
• Incandescent
• Custom
Image parameters Finepix color (Standard, Chrome, B&W)
Continuous • 2.2 fps, max 3 images (Top-3 or Final-3)
• 0.7 fps, unlimited
Flash • Built-in pop-up
• Range (Auto ISO): 8.3 m (w), 4.6 m (t)
• Modes: Auto, Red-eye reduction, On, Off, Slow Sync, Slow + Red-eye
Storage • 10 MB internal memory
• xD-Picture Card (not included)
Viewfinder • 0.33" electronic viewfinder (EVF)
• 115,000 pixels
LCD monitor • 2.5" TFT LCD
• 235,000 pixels
• Brightness boost
• 100% coverage
Connectivity • USB 2.0 High speed
• A/V out (NTSC/PAL switchable)
Power • 4 x AA batteries alkaline or NiMH (alkaline included)
• Charger optional
Other features

• DPOF
• PictBridge
• Index view
• Histogram
• 2 and 10 sec self-timer
• Hardware-based Face Detection AF/AE

Optional accessories • Wide and Telephoto adaptors
High Power Flash HF-DC1
Soft Case PSC-1
Compact AC Power Adapter ACK-DC20
Weight (no batt) 600 g (1.3 lb)
Dimensions 131 x 98 x 128 mm (5.2 x 3.8 x 5.0 in)

* Supplied accessories may differ in each country or area


If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Conclusion / Recommendation / Ratings are based on the opinion of the reviewer, you should read the ENTIRE review before coming to your own conclusions.

Images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of the image, clicking on the image will display a larger (typically VGA) image in a new window.

To navigate the review simply use the next / previous page buttons, to jump to a particular section either pick the section from the drop down or select it from the navigation bar at the top.

DPReview calibrate their monitors using Color Vision OptiCal at the (fairly well accepted) PC normal gamma 2.2, this means that on our monitors we can make out the difference between all of the (computer generated) grayscale blocks below. We recommend to make the most of this review you should be able to see the difference (at least) between X,Y and Z and ideally A,B and C.

This article is Copyright 2006 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

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