Fujifilm FinePix 6900Z Review
Timings & File Sizes
As with most digital cameras with extending lenses the FinePix 6900Z's slowest function is powering on, there's roughly 3.4 seconds of the 4.7 it takes to power on taken up by the lens extension. Otherwise it's a quick and relatively responsive camera. The only caveat being that while the camera is writing images to the SmartMedia card (which it does 'in the background') you can not enter the menu system or change camera settings, although you can take another shot and zoom.
Timing Notes: All times calculated as an average of three operations. Unless otherwise stated all timings were made on a 2832 x 2128 FINE JPEG image (approx. 2.2 MB per image).
|Power: Off to Record||4.7||Lens takes 3.4 secs|
|Power: Off to Play||3.2||Busy egg timer *1|
|Power: Record to Off||3.3||Lens retract|
|Power: Play to Off||0.5||Lens already retracted|
|Mode: Record to Play||0.7||Busy egg timer *1|
|Mode: Play to Record||1.0|
|Play: Magnify||10.6||42 steps|
|Rec: Thumbnail view||3 x 3 thumbnails||0.5|
|Auto Focus LAG||Lens At Wide Angle||0.7 - 1.4||Average|
|Auto Focus Lag||Lens At Full Tele||0.7 - 3.4||Average - Slow *2|
|Shutter Release LAG||Using LCD or EVF||0.1||Fast|
|Total LAG||1.1||Average to Slow|
|Off to Shot Taken||6.9||Average|
|Shot to Shot||Postview Enabled, Manual Focus||2.8||Fast *3|
|Shot to Shot||Postview Disabled, Manual Focus||1.1||Very Fast|
|*1||Camera displays an animated egg timer before displaying an image, pressing the left or right arrows on the 4-way controller will move to the next image before the current is loaded but there is no on-screen indication of which image you are currently viewing.|
|*2||We were surprised to find that when the lens is zoomed to full telephoto it can take up to 3.5 seconds to auto focus, the 'hunt' takes far longer at this zoom than at full wide.|
|*3||Fast considering the postview image is displayed for 2 seconds during which time you can't do anything.|
The table below shows the results of our continuous shooting test, indicating the actual frame rate along with maximum number of frames and how long you would have to wait after taking the maximum number of frames before you could take the next burst.
|Image Type||Frames per sec||Max no. of frames *1||
|6mp: 2832 x 2128 FINE||5.0 fps||5||27 secs|
|6mp: 2832 x 2128 NORMAL||5.0 fps||5||21 secs|
|3mp: 2048 x 1536 FINE||5.0 fps||5||22 secs|
|1mp: 1280 x 960 FINE||5.0 fps||5||17 secs|
|VGA: 640 x 480 NORMAL||5.0 fps||5||13 secs|
|*1||In a single "burst" (finger held down on shutter release), the camera will shoot at 5 fps for as long as your finger is depressed or a maximum of 1 second.|
|*2||You must wait until the current burst of images is saved to the SmartMedia card before you take the next burst.|
As you can see, the limitation here is the size of the 6900Z's frame buffer before the images are converted to whichever JPEG size / quality you have selected. Whichever mode producing a surprisingly fast 5 frames per second (the fastest so far for a consumer grade prosumer digital camera).
File Flush / Display Timing
Timings shown below are the time taken for the camera to process and "flush" the image out to the SmartMedia card, the timer was started as soon as the shutter release was pressed (shutter click was heard) and stopped when SmartMedia activity indicator on the LCD stops animating. This means the timings also include the cameras processing time and as such are more representative of the actual time to "complete the task".
to store *1
to display * 2
|6mp: 2832 x 2128||HI TIFF *3||22.5||20.0|
|6mp: 2832 x 2128||FINE||7.3||2.1|
|6mp: 2832 x 2128||NORMAL||5.2||1.3|
|3mp: 2048 x 1536||FINE||7.1||1.1|
|1mp: 1280 x 960||FINE||4.7||0.7|
|VGA: 640 x 480||NORMAL||4.3||<0.5|
|*1||During this time you can take another shot almost immediately (assuming there is space in the cameras buffer for it), however you can not enter the camera menu, change any settings (macro, flash, drive, exp. compen, manual focus etc.) or switch to another mode until the current image has been flushed to the SmartMedia card.|
|*2||Pressing the left or right arrow key on the 4-way controller will cancel loading and move on to the next image, however there is no on-screen indication of which image you are 'on'.|
Here's a comparison of the average byte size of each of different image size / quality combinations.
|Image Size||Quality||Image format||File
(~ = approx)
|No. on 16 MB SmartMedia Card *2||No. on 128 MB SmartMedia card *2|
|6mp: 2832 x 2128||HI||TIFF||17,720 KB||0||7|
|6mp: 2832 x 2128||FINE||JPEG||~2,300 KB||6||53|
|6mp: 2832 x 2128||NORMAL||JPEG||~970 KB||13||113|
|6mp: 2832 x 2128||BASIC||JPEG||~380 KB||33||275|
|3mp: 2048 x 1536||FINE||JPEG||~1,200 KB||12||102|
|3mp: 2048 x 1536||NORMAL||JPEG||~490 KB||26||215|
|1mp: 1280 x 960||FINE||JPEG||~580 KB||25||204|
|1mp: 1280 x 960||NORMAL||JPEG||~220 KB||49||398|
|VGA: 640 x 480||NORMAL||JPEG||~60 KB||163||1330|
|*1||All file sizes are an average of three files. As is the case with JPEG it's difficult to predict the size of an image because it will vary a fair amount depending on the content of the image (especially the amount of detail captured). For example, take a photograph of a fairly empty wall and you'll get a small JPEG, take a photograph of a bush with a lot of detail and you'll get a larger image. File sizes here are closer to the later, the larger size of file you should expect.|
|*2||As estimated by the camera with a blank formatted card inserted.|
During the "development" of my Nikon Coolpix 995 review it became apparent that we needed to devise a reliable, repeatable battery test. This is what I came up with:
- Take 4 shots without flash
- Wait 2 minutes (50% of the time powering the camera off)
- Take 1 shot with flash
- Wait 1 minute
This test routine was carried out on five different cameras simultaneously. All batteries had been fully discharged and recharged before the test and all cameras were reset to their factory default settings. Here are the results:
|Camera||Battery||Power||Battery life||Number of shots|
|Canon Digital IXUS 300||NB-1L||2.5 Wh||1 hr 26 mins||155|
|Fujifilm FinePix 6900Z||NP-80||4.1 Wh||2 hr 29 mins||250|
|Nikon Coolpix 995||EN-EL1||4.8 Wh||2 hr 30 mins||255|
|Canon PowerShot G1||BP-511||8.1 Wh||3 hr 00 mins||300|
|Sony DSC-S75||NP-FM50||8.6 Wh||3 hr 15 mins||330|
|Sony DSC-S85||NP-FM50||8.6 Wh||3 hr 50 mins||400|
As you can see battery life was very similar to the Coolpix 995. The 4900Z has some fairly aggressive power saving features such as shutting off the LCD / EVF backlight after just 30 seconds of inactivity. All in all an impressive performance from such a small and lightweight battery (though I'd still recommend most people to invest in a spare).
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