Conclusion - Pros

  • Relatively good 3+ megapixel resolution
  • Excellent, vivid, yet accurate colour reproduction
  • 6 megapixel mode good for large prints straight out of the camera
  • Images seldom need any post-processing
  • Virtually no chromatic aberrations
  • Compact size, light weight, metal case, sleek design
  • Unique "Display Panel" LCD / cursor control works well
  • Supplied cradle for charging and connectivity
  • Good build quality
  • Very quick operation, good buffering excellent shot-to-shot times
  • Automatic lens cover
  • Supplied Lithium-Ion battery and new power saving features work well together
  • Web-cam mode (in cradle)
  • USB connectivity

Conclusion - Cons

  • No creative controls in continuous shooting mode
  • Only one movie mode setting (320 x 240, 10 fps)
  • Still no option to have LCD on at startup
  • Lens distortion / unsharp in corners
  • Lens barrel distortion at wide angle
  • No manual exposure features (no aperture or shutter priority)
  • Night exposures are a no-no
  • Record menu is overly complicated, layout sometimes confusing
  • LCD sometimes difficult to see in bright sunlight
  • Flash doesn't have the power or the cover wide angle shots
  • Auto White balance doesn't work well in artificial light
  • Relatively expensive for its limited feature set

Overall conclusion

Here's my rating of the Fujifilm FinePix 6800Z: (3 megapixel compact)

Detail Rating (out of 10)
Construction 9
Features 7
Image quality 8
Lens / CCD combination 7
Ease of use 7
Value for money 6.5

The Fujifilm FinePix 6800Z is a well built, sleek designed, high resolution compact digital camera. Its image quality can be compared with some of the best of the current three megapixel crowd and it is also capable produce large file sizes which are ideal for large sized (A4) prints.

Despite the slightly confusing marketing signals the 6800Z did prove that it could squeeze just slightly more resolution out of it's "SuperCCD" sensor than a traditional 3 megapixel, though it does so not without the introduction of artifacts (moiré / uneven edges). Colour reproduction is something else, in good natural light the 6800Z produces excellent colours which are both vivid and accurate.

Fujifilm still need to work on a few details which may well spoil the overall "ownership experience": the lens isn't sharp right up to the corners, something we could excuse of such a compact lens system, but not on a $900 camera, lack of creative modes places this camera on the expensive side for its feature set, white balance doesn't work at all well in artificial light and the general layout of the user interface could be improved.

All that said I have to give Fujifilm extra points for the 6800Z, they've definitely made a lot of improvements since the 4700Z, the new cradle is an excellent addition and if you're into it you can even use the camera as a webcam. Now, if only they could do something about the price...

Above Average

So which one should I buy? A question I get asked several times a day, and I wouldn't like to say. In a new addition to my reviews (after the amount of feedback I normally get) I've added a link to a specific forum in which you can discuss the review or ask me specific questions which I've not answered in these pages.

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