Fujifilm FinePix S20 Pro
Review Date: 29th June 2004
The Fujfilm FinePix S20 Pro has a 3.1 megapixel CCD that delivers more than 6.03 million recorded pixels. There are 4 image sizes available (2832 x 2128, 2048 x 1536, 1600 x 1200, 1280 x 960), which can be recorded as JPEGs or in the RAW format. The camera features a Super EBC Fujinon 6X optical zoom lens that is equivalent to a 35–210mm lens on a 35mm format camera. The xD-Picture Card and Microdrive memory card formats are supported via 2 different card slots (some CompactFlash cards can be used in the Microdrive slot).
This camera offers a full range of selectable exposure modes, with Programmed AE, Aperture Priority AE, Shutter Priority AE and Manual, as well as a number of scene modes (Portrait, Landscape, Sports, Night Scene). The Fujfilm FinePix S20 Pro has 3 exposure metering modes (64-zone TTL metering - multi, spot, average) and there are 3 different types of focusing available (TTL–contrast type, Auto focus, Manual focus). The aperture range is f2.8 – f11 and the shutter speed range is 30 sec. – 1/10000 sec in Manual mode. There are 2 macro modes available - Macro, which allows you to shoot approximately 10cm – 80cms away from your subject, and Super Macro, which allows you to shoot approximately 1cm – 20cms away.
ISO speeds range from 160 to 1600. Unfortunately 160 is only available in Auto mode and 1600 is only available when the camera is set to record 1M files, and not for the larger image sizes. There are 10 different White Balance settings to choose from.
The Fujfilm FinePix S20 Pro has a continuous shooting mode with various options. Top 10 allows you to take 4.5 frames/sec. up to 10 frames and keep the first 10 frames of the sequence. Final 10 allows you to take 4.5 frames/sec. up to 10 frames and keep the last 10 frames of the sequence. Long-period continuous takes up to 40 shots at up to 1 frame per second, but only using the 1M file quality setting. The The Fujfilm FinePix S20 Pro features a self-timer which can be set to either a 2 or 10 second delay.
The built-in flash offers a range of different modes; Auto,
Red-eye Reduction, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Synchro,
Red-eye Reduction & Slow Synchro. The effective range
at the wide angle lens setting is: 0.3m to 8.5m, and at the
telephoto setting 0.9m to 7.9m. If the built-in flash doesn't
meet your needs, there is a non–dedicated hot–shoe
PC sync socket for connection to studio and external flash systems.
The Fujfilm FinePix S20 Pro Zoom has a traditional threaded cable release socket which avoids the expense of having to use a proprietary cable release. It also sports both USB 2.0 and Firewire connections, allowing rapid transfer of images from camera to PC. Like most recent digital cameras the Fujfilm FinePix S20 Pro Zoom is PictBridge compatible.
To compose your images, you can use the LCD monitor or the electronic viewfinder. The Fujfilm FinePix S20 Pro has a 1.8 inch colour TFT LCD monitor which has 118,000 pixels. The electronic viewfinder is .44 inches in size, has 235,000 pixels and features built-in dioptre adjustment. The camera is powered by 4 x AA size alkaline batteries or 4 x Ni-MH rechargeable batteries.
The Fujfilm FinePix S20 Pro can record movies at 2 different settings; 640x480 pixels at 30 frames per second and 320x240 pixels at 30 frames per second. Both settings are recorded in the Motion JPEG format, a type of AVI format that can handle images and sound as a single file, and can be played back by QuickTime 3 or later. As well as recording movies with sound, the Fujfilm FinePix S20 Pro also doubles up as a voice recorder, allowing you to record 30-second long voice memos in the WAV format.
The camera's dimensions are 121mm (W) x 81.5mm (H) x 97mm (D), and it weighs approximately 500g without batteries and storage cards fitted.
Finally, the standard box kit contains a 16Mb xD-Picture Card, USB cable, Firewire (IEEE 1394) cable, AV cable, 4 x AA type alkaline batteries, shoulder strap, lens cap and holder, PC Sync socket cap, manuals, a CD-ROM containing various software and the HS-V2 Hyper Utility Software (worth £149.99). This is a a new software tool that enables you to fine-tune aspects of a image such as sharpness, colour balance, and the full extent of the camera's dynamic range. 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 5 images at the default 6M Fine file quality setting. You will also have to budget for some rechargeable batteries and a recharger, as the supplied alkaline batteries don't last very long.