Fujifilm Finepix F50fd Review
The F50fd is a complete redesign of the F31fd. The simple boxy shapes of its predecessor have been modified with a variety of curves and edges, all part of Fujifilm's 'Aero' design. Aesthetics aside, as a side-effect this makes you feel slightly more comfortable holding the camera with one hand, there is also a'hint' of a grip. Build quality and finish are excellent despite the use of some plastic. The F50fd has the look and feel of a premium product. The camera dimensions have hardly changed: the F50fd is still not the slimmest or most compact camera in its class.
The amount of external controls remains on a fairly minimal level, too. Although it offers a range of manual controls (Aperture and Shutter Priority) the F50fd is essentially a 'point and shoot' model. Manual control can be fiddly and changing most of the settings requires you to dive deep into the menus. Having said that, the camera performs well in full auto mode and there is not usually a need to modify anything more than ISO and AE-comp settings which are both easily accessible.
In your hand
The FinePix F50fd is not the smallest camera of its kind, but the protrusion-free design means it's definitely handbag and even jacket pocket compatible. At around 175g (including battery and memory card) it's hardly a lightweight amongst compact cameras either, but does feel reassuringly stable in use and is easily lightweight enough to carry with you at all times. The F50fd generally feels comfortable in your hand although there is so much screen on the back of the camera that (depending on the size of your hands) you could find it difficult not to leave your fingerprints on it all the time.