Fujifilm Finepix F420 Zoom
Review Date: August 21st 2004
The FinePix F420 Zoom has a 3.1 megapixel CCD that delivers 6 million recorded pixels. There are four image sizes available (2,816 x 2,120 (6.0 million), 2,048 x 1,536, 1,280 x 960, 640 x 480 pixels). The camera features a Fujinon 3X optical zoom lens that is equivalent to a 36–108mm lens on a 35mm format camera. In macro mode the camera can focus as close as 8.5 cm from the subject. The Fujifilm Finepix F420 only supports the xD-Picture Card format.
This camera offers one exposure mode (Program AE) and one type of focusing (Autofocus). The aperture range is f2.0– f8.0 and the shutter speed range is 2 sec. – 1/2000 sec, depending on the shooting mode. There are 4 ISO speeds available, equivalent to ISO 160/200/400/800, but if ISO 800 is selected the image resolution is automatically set to 1M. There are 7 different White Balance settings to choose from (Automatic, Fine, Shade, Fluorescent light (Daylight), Fluorescent light (Warm White), Fluorescent light (Cool White), and Incandescent light).
The FinePix F420 Zoom has a number of different shooting modes, including Auto and Manual and four Scene modes (Portrait, Landscape, Sports, Night Scene). There is a continuous shooting mode in which you can take 4 frames at 4 frames/sec and choose to keep either the first 4 or last 4 frames of a 25 frame sequence. The FinePix F420 Zoom also has a self-timer which has a 10 second delay, and there are 3 special colour modes ( B&W / Chrome / Standard).
The built-in flash offers a range of different modes (Auto, Red-eye Reduction, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Synchro, Red-eye Reduction and Slow Synchro). The effective range is approx. 0.6 m – 3.5m at the wide-angle lens setting, and approx. 0.6m – 2.7m at the telephoto lens setting.
Images are recorded as JPEGs in a range of different quality and size settings. To compose your images, you can use both the LCD monitor, which has 100% scene coverage, or the traditional optical viewfinder, which offers approx. 80% coverage. The FinePix F420 Zoom has a 1.8 inch colour TFT LCD monitor which has 134,000 pixels and is powered by either the supplied proprietary NH–20 rechargeable battery or 2 x AAA size alkaline batteries / Ni-MH rechargeable batteries.
The FinePix F420 Zoom can record movies of 320 x 240 pixels at30 frames/sec. with monaural sound. They are recorded in the Motion JPEG format, a type of AVI format that can be played back by QuickTime 3 or later. You can also record voice memos up to 30 seconds long in WAV format. The video-output socket allows you to connects the camera to your television, to your computer via a USB cable, and to the optional PictureCradle accessory. The camera is PictBridge compatible, which is the industry standard for printing images from a digital camera without using a PC.
The F700 zoom dimensions are 77 (W) x 69 (H) x 26.4 (D) mm, and it weighs 145g without batteries and storage card fitted.
Finally, the box kit that I reviewed contains an 16MB xD-Picture Card, rechargeable battery (NH–20), battery charger (BC–NH20), camera strap, USB cable and a A/V cable. The supplied software CD includes USB drivers and Fujifilm's FinePix Viewer 4.0 for image browsing. You will need to invest in a few more xD-Picture Cards to store your images on, as the supplied 16Mb can only store approximately 19 images at the 3M file quality setting.