Compared to... Fujifilm Finepix S6000fd

Before we move onto comparisons with the S8000fd's direct competitors we though it would be interesting to see - in an admittedly rather unfair comparison - how it fares against the Super CCD FinePix S6000fd.

We have regularly highlighted the folly of cramming more pixels onto smaller sensors whilst also offering higher sensitivity settings. This comparison demonstrates what we've been talking about.

Studio scene comparison (S6000fd @ ISO 64, S6000fd @ ISO 100)

  • Fujifilm FinePix S8000fd: Aperture Priority mode, ISO 64, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.67 EV compensation

  • Fujifilm FinePix S6000: Aperture Priority mode, ISO 100, Default Image Parameters,
    Manual white balance, +0.3 EV compensation
  • Lighting: Daylight simulation, >98% CRI
Fujifilm FinePix S8000fd
Fujifilm FinePix S6000fd
ISO 64, 1/40 sec, F4.5
ISO 100, 1/70 sec, F5.0
2,914 KB JPEG
2,906 KB JPEG

Although these two cameras are unlikely to appeal to the same consumer, comparing the two of them demonstrates very effectively the compromises inherent in trying to build a 18x zoom camera in such a compact format. Lens design becomes more complicated the longer the range, so you wouldn't expect flawless performance all the way through an 18x zoom. Also, the only way to build a long-reach, relatively bright lens in such a small space is to build it around a very small sensor. By comparison, the S6000fd uses a shorter zoom (10.7x) and a larger sensor (1/1.7", rather than 1/2.35"), containing fewer pixels (6.3 million, rather than 8.0 million).

Even at the base ISO setting, the difference in performance is obvious, in part because of the differing qualities of the two lenses, but also the justifiably acclaimed 6.3MP Super CCD sensor. The 10.7x zoom on the S6000fd already covers the kind of range that could impact on image quality. Despite this, it outperforms the 18X zoom of the S8000fd, which isn't producing such sharp results, in spite of its higher resolution.