Fujifilm FinePix S9000 / S9500 Review
Announced at the end of July 2005, the FinePix S9000 (S9500 in Europe and Asia) is the latest in a long line of Fujifilm 'prosumer' camera designed to bridge the gap between fixed lens compacts and interchangeable lens SLRs, and effectively the replacement for the popular S7000. With each generation that gap has been closed a little bit more, and with the arrival of the S9000 Fujifilm's marketeers have taken the brave step of openly positioning it as a true alternative to a digital SLR... even going as far as to say in many ways it's actually better... And certainly, on paper, they've got a point; it's designed to look and feel like an entry-level SLR, it has a broadly comparable feature set, and it has a big zoom covering a useful 28-300mm focal length range. It's also got an SLR-like sensitivity range (80-1600), fast startup and a screw thread for filters and add-on lenses, hot-shoe and pc-synch flash compatibility, and movie mode and live preview - something many compact users upgrading to an entry-level DLSR sorely miss. Let's find out if the S9000 really is an SLR-slayer, or merely a sheep in wolf's clothing..
Here's a quick run through of the main selling points to get us started:
- New Fujifilm Super CCD sensor with 9.0 million effective pixels
- New 28-300mm (10.7x) Fujinon zoom lens with manual twist-barrel zoom control
- Class-leading sensitivity setting of ISO 1600 for photography in low light conditions
- 1.8” tilting LCD screen for easy high and low angle shooting
- 0.01 second shutter lag and 0.8 second start-up
- Real-time histogram
- Highlight Warning feature for displaying highlight areas in playback
- VGA movie capture of 30 frames per second with zoom capability and sound
- Closed unit design to eliminate dust accumulation on the CCD
- Hot shoe and PC sync terminal
- RAW format shooting
- Dual storage options (CompactFlash and xD-Picture Card)
*Note: The FinePix S9500 used in this review is the same camera as the S9000 sold in the US. Throughout this review any reference to the S9500 applies equally to the S9000.
Fujifilm FinePix S9500/9000 vs S7000 (differences)
Fujifilm FinePix S7000
Fujifilm FinePix S9000
|Sensor||1/1.7 inch Super CCD||1/1.6" SuperCCD HR|
|Effective Pixels||6.0 million||9.0 million|
|Maximum file size||4048 x 3040 (interpolated)
||3488 x 2616|
|Lens|| • 35-210mm F2.8 - F3.1
• Minimum aperture F8
• 55 mm thread (via optional adapter)
|• 28-300mm F2.8 - F4.9
• Minimum aperture F11
58mm filter thread
|Zoom control||Electronic (buttons)||Mechanical (zoom ring)|
|ISO settings|| • Auto (ISO 160 - 400)
• ISO 200, 400 (manual)
• ISO 800 (at 1 / 2 / 3 MP only)
ISO 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
|Shooting modes||Portrait, Landscape, Sports, Night Portrait, Black & White, Auto, Program (with shift), Aperture Priority, Manual||Portrait, Landscape, Night Portrait, Anti-Blur, Natural Light, Auto, Program (with shift), Aperture Priority, Manual|
|Continuous shooting|| • "Top 5" (3.3 fps up to 5 frames)
• "Final 5" (2 fps, up to 40 frames, records last 5)
• "Long period" (1 fps, up to 40 frames at 1 MP / 2 MP / 3 MP only , only available in Auto exposure mode)
| "Top 4" : up to 4 frames (1.5 fps)
"Final 4": last 4 frames before releasing the shutter button
Long-period continuous shooting: up to 40 frames (1.1 fps max.)
|LCD Screen||• 1.8", 118,000 pixel||• 1.8", 118,000 pixel
• Tilt (hinged at top)
• W: 0.3 - 8.5 m (11.8 in - 27.9 ft)
|• W: 0.3– 5.6 m (1.0–18.4 ft )
• T: 0.6– 3.0 m (2– 9.8 ft)
|597 g (1.3 lb)||745 g (26.3 oz)|
|Dimensions||121 x 82 x 97 mm (4.8 x 3.2 x 3.8 in)||128 x 93 x 129 mm (5 x 3.7 x 5.1 in)|
|Other||• High speed shooting mode
• Optional 60 fps LCD refresh rate
|Street price|| US: $699 (FinePix S9000)
UK: £480 (FinePix S9500)
• 1/1.6 inch 5th-Generation Super CCD HR
• 3488 x 2616
• 640 x 480 (30 fps)
28 - 300mm equiv. (10.7x optical zoom) Fujinon
|Focus|| Contrast-detect through-the-lens (TTL) AF
Auto and manual focus
Continuous and single shot AF
Area, Center and Multi (manual AF point selection) autofocus
1cm closest focus (Super macro mode, wideangle)
• Programmed AE with program shift
|Metering||• TTL 256-zone metering
• Multi, Spot, Average
|Shutter Speeds||• P / A / S: 4 sec to 1/4000 sec
• M: 30 sec to 1/4000 sec
• Bulb: up to 30 sec
|Apertures||F2.8 - F11 up to 13 steps in 1/3 increments (wideangle)|
|White Balance|| Auto
Manual (two custom settings)
|Image parameters|| Contrast (3 levels)
Saturation (3 levels)
Sharpness (3 levels)
Color options (standard, chrome, black & white)
|Continuous|| Top 4-frame: up to 4 frames (1.5 fps max)
Final 4-frame: last 4 frames before releasing the shutter button
(1.5 fps max)
Long-period continuous shooting: up to 40 frames (1.1 fps max.)
|Flash|| Built-in pop-up flash
Auto, Manual on/off, Red-eye reduction: on/off, Slow sync: on/off
Range (Auto ISO):W: 0.3– 5.6 m (1.0–18.4 ft ); T: 0.6– 3.0 m (2– 9.8 ft)
Hot-shoe for external flash
|Storage|| XD-Picture Card
CompactFlash Type I / II (inc. MicroDrive)
|Viewfinder|| 0.44 inches, 235,000 pixels electronic viewfinder
Approx coverage 100%
|LCD monitor|| 1.8" TFT, 118,000 pixels
approx 100% coverage
|Connectivity|| USB 2.0 High Speed (480Mbits/second)
|Power||• 4x AA batteries (Alkaline included)
• Ni-MH batteries recommended
• AC-5Vx AC adapter (optional)
• AA-size alkaline batteries (LR6) (4)
RAW shooting option
|Weight (inc batts)||745 g (26.3 oz)|
|Dimensions||128 x 93 x 129 mm (5 x 3.7 x 5.1 in)|
* Supplied accessories may differ in each country or area
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|Last Glow by Domenick Creaco|
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