Pre-PMA 2004: Fujifilm has today announced the all new SuperCCD SR based FinePix S3 Pro. The S3 Pro appears to be still based on the N80 (F80) body but is now much rounder and compact in appearance as well as including a vertical hand grip. The S3 Pro has a 6mp + 6mp SuperCCD SR sensor with the same output image sizes as the S2 Pro (12 megapixel maximum) but (as we hope) with higher dynamic range as each pixel location has two photodiodes, one which has normal sensitivity and one with lower sensitivity for capturing the highlight detail. Ever since Fujifilm announced the SuperCCD SR design we've been waiting for the moment they'd introduce it into a digital SLR, well here it is. At this stage there are no detailed specifications available, although we have produced a 'what we know so far' list.

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Phil: We loved the S2 Pro, I'm looking forward to testing its replacement.

Fujifilm FinePix S3 Pro - what we know so far

  • Based on the Nikon N80 (F80)
  • SuperCCD SR sensor, 6 million pixel locations (2 photodiodes per pixel location)
  • Image sizes: 4256 x 2848, 3024 x 2016, 2304 x 1536, 1440 x 960
  • JPEG (Fine / Normal / Basic), CCD-RAW (14-bit)
  • Same 1.5x Field of view crop as S2 Pro (and Nikon DX digital SLR's)
  • New body with rounder design, molded rear grip
  • Vertical hand grip with shutter release, lockable
  • Dual LCD design (like S2 Pro)
  • New 2.0" 235,000 pixel LCD monitor
  • Larger buttons, adjusted control layout on rear of camera
  • Redesigned storage compartment door
  • Sensitivity: ISO 100, 160, 200, 400, 800, 1600
  • Shutter speed: Bulb, 30 to 1/4000 sec
  • Flash X-Sync max 1/180 sec
  • Storage: xD-Picture Card, Compact Flash Type I/II (inc. Microdrive)
  • Connectivity: USB 2.0, IEEE 1394, DC-IN, Video Out, PC Sync terminal
  • Power: 4 x AA batteries only (2 x CR123A's no longer required)
  • D-TTL Flash metering
  • Dimensions: 148 x 135 x 80 mm (5.9 x 5.3 x 3.2 in)
  • Weight (no batt/lens): 835 g (1.8 lb)

Fujifilm FinePix S3 Pro Brochure

The brochure below is the exact same that will be handed out at the PMA 2004 show later this week, we've now got an official copy for you to download. It's PDF format and 319 KB in size.

PDF format, 319 KB

Press Release:

2004 successor for FinePix S2 Pro

Development of new SLR almost complete

5 February 2004 - PMA, Las Vegas, USA*: This year will see the eagerly-anticipated launch of the FinePix S3 Pro –successor to Fujifilm’s critically-acclaimed FinePix S2 Pro digital SLR. Set to confirm Fujifilm’s status as one of the top three digital camera makers, this model has been conceived as the camera of choice for photographers who wish to achieve image quality worthy of Fujifilm’s professional film heritage.

This camera will be a breed apart from all other DSLRs because of its sensor and processor technology, without doubt the most important components within any digital camera. The FinePix S3 Pro's 4th Generation Super CCD SR sensor will use 6.17 million S-pixels and 6.17 million

R-pixels (12.3 million effective photodiodes) to deliver 12 million recorded pixels. The picture quality from this 23 x 15.5mm sensor will show noticeable image improvements to that of single-pixel cameras. The SR sensor's unique double photodiode design will produce images with a dynamic range four times greater than that of a sensor working on single-pixel technology. This dramatically broadens tonal capability, and guarantees exceptional rendition from bright highlights to deep shadows. It gives greater sensitivity, improved signal-to-noise ratio and consistently natural colour reproduction.

The camera is designed around the long-established Nikon F-mount, and will have two shutter release buttons to ensure comfortable shooting in both landscape and portrait orientations. A further improvement on the S2 Pro is that power is provided by four AA batteries.

The FinePix S3 Pro's Intelligent Flash with D-TTL full-aperture exposure metering will enable photographers to achieve outstanding results with compatible Nikon DX-series Speedlights. Appearing for the first time in a Fujifilm digital camera, this will allow a new level of creative lighting options for FinePix S3 Pro users. What's more, the PC sync connection will allow strobes or other external flash systems to be connected for ultimate studio connectivity.

The camera will accept both xD-Picture Card™ and Microdrive™ media, for more flexible storage. It incorporates a newly-developed, bright two-inch 235,000 pixel LCD monitor (with approximately 100% frame coverage) alongside a second LCD data display for information on settings. And for improved data transfer speeds, the camera is set to offer both high-speed IEEE1394 and USB 2.0 interfaces.

Feedback from customers on the design and functionality of the FinePix S2 Pro was an integral part of Fujifilm's design process for its successor. As a result of this input, and the success of the FinePix S2 Pro, Fujifilm has retained the camera's solid, one-piece body made from durable polycarbonate, as a basis for the FinePix S3 Pro.

Adrian Clarke, Director of Consumer Products, Fujifilm UK, said, "For many years, the world’s top photographers have chosen to load their cameras with Fuji film, to produce the very best images from their cameras. Once they see the images produced by the S3 Pro’s Super CCD SR, we are confident that Fujifilm will be their choice for years to come.

“Rather than follow the trend of removing features from the digital SLR, our mission has been to improve on a top-class product. Almost all the development effort is being focused on where it matters most – the imaging sensor and processing. This announcement reconfirms Fujifilm as one of the three leading developers of digital SLR cameras."

Pricing and availability

Pricing and availability of the FinePix S3 Pro will be announced soon.

* The PMA (Photo Marketing Association) Annual Convention & Trade Show takes place in Las Vegas from 12 to 15 February 2004. Fujifilm's can be found at stand number A1/E10/E2.

Fujifilm FinePix S3 Pro more pictures