Fujifilm FinePix Z70 Review

May 28, 2010 | Mark Goldstein | Rating star Rating star Rating star Rating star


The Fujifilm FinePix Z70 is a style-focused ultra-compact digital camera with a 12 megapixel CCD sensor, a 2.7 inch LCD screen and a 5x optical zoom lens (36-180mm focal length) with a sliding cover. For movie makers the Z70 has the must-have feature of 2010, high-definition 720p video recording at 30fps, with the welcome ability to use the 5x zoom during recording and a handy one-touch record button. Easy uploads to Facebook/YouTube, ISO 100 up to ISO 1600 at full resolution, Tracking Auto Focus, support for SD/SDHC memory cards, and an Automatic Scene Recognition mode for beginners complete the Z70's main specifications. The Fujifilm FinePix Z70 costs £129.99 / $149.95 and is available in black silver, red, blue or purple.

Ease of Use

The Fujifilm FinePix Z70 is a small and slim metal-bodied point and shoot camera with a sliding cover that protects the lens and also turns the camera on and off. It's cheaper than its build quality and good looks would initially suggest, at £129.99 / $149.95 costing a lot less than other fashion-orientated snapshot rivals. Size and pricing aside, this 12-megapixel camera is as much about user friendliness as creative flexibility. For those with kids or subjects that don't stay put its auto focus tracking ability will doubtless come in handy, as will the 5x internal zoom lens, which provides a focal range of 36mm wide-angle to 180mm telephoto.

Given the telephoto lens reach of 180mm, image stabilisation is a welcome inclusion, albeit a less effective digital system which increases the ISO speed rather than the more advanced CCD-shift anti shake found on other models in Fujifilm's extensive range. In practice therefore with the Fujifilm FinePix Z70 it's mostly a case of a half press of the shutter release button and the camera does the rest, particularly with Fujifilm including an 'auto everything' scene recognition (SR) auto mode. Although far from infallible - if you're not paying close attention and it's presented with a busy scene it'll call up landscape when macro is needed and vice versa - it adds to the beginner-friendly feel.

The Z70 introduces high-definition video for the first time to the Fujifilm Z-series, capturing 1280 x 720 pixel footage at 30fps with mono sound, full use of the 5x zoom and a maximum recording time of 15 minutes per clip. Alternatively there are also 640 x 480 pixels and 320 x 240 pixels modes, also at 30 fps. Although there's no built-in HDMI port, you could use Fujifilm's optional HD Player Kit instead, which includes an HD card reader that connects the camera to your HDTV, and even a wireless remote control. The in-camera Movie Edit function allows you to make your movies black and white, sepia or even add backlight correction to correct the exposure.

Fujifilm FinePix Z70 Fujifilm FinePix Z70
Front Rear

Given its beginner market the Fujifilm FinePix Z70's buttons and controls are for the most part large and sufficiently self-explanatory that the manual - a full version here on CD only - doesn't need to be digested before you're up and shooting. As for the remainder of the box contents, you'll need to supply your own SD, SDHC or SDHX card for image storage.

When turned off the front of the Z70 looks very minimalist, with the lens and other controls safely hidden away out of sight. Slide down the lens cover and the fixed internal lens is revealed, which doesn't extend from the camera when zoomed. It offers respectable enough maximum apertures of f/3.9 at 36mm and f/4.7 at 180mm. To the left the lens are the integral flash unit and an activity LED. Note that there's no hand-grip on the front of the Z70, which does make it a little tricky to hold. The sliding lens cover also acts as the On/Off control, with the Z70 powering up in around 2 seconds - pretty quick for this class of camera - and the rear LCD displaying a Fujifilm logo initially before blossoming into life.

The Fujifilm FinePix Z70's top plate houses the large and tactile shutter-release, with a definite halfway point so that a premature capture is avoided, the camera giving an affirmative 'beep' when focus and exposure have been determined and the AF point highlighted in green dancing around the screen if either your camera or subject is moving. To the right is a small but welcome Movie Record button, making it quick and simple to begin shooting the aforementioned 720p HD movies.

Fujifilm FinePix Z70 Fujifilm FinePix Z70
Side Front

At the rear of the Z70 we find the rest of the operational controls. These are well laid out and their functions ably illustrated. Starting top right of the 2.7-inch, 230k-dot LCD screen, there's a fairly responsive thumb-operated zoom button, with the camera taking just under four seconds to move through the range from maximum wideangle to telephoto. Full resolution JPEG images are saved almost instantaneously when shooting in single shot mode, so no complaints there.

Underneath is a ridged area where your right thumb naturally sits when holding the camera, and underneath that is a button for marking a file for upload to Facebook or Youtube, which is only operational when you use the Playback button on the right. Immediately below this again we have a four-way control pad. Placed at the four points are icons for deleting images and setting the exposure compensation, choosing the flash mode, the various self-timer options, plus macro and super macro settings. A button for cycling through the various LCD display settings, turning off the visible icons on screen and/or calling up a nine zone compositional grid when in capture mode, and a familiar menu/OK button complete the rear controls.

Press the Fujifilm FinePix Z70's menu/OK button in anything but auto mode and you're presented with two clearly read screens of shooting options when in capture mode or review mode (if shooting using one of the auto settings, options are abbreviated to turning self timer or high speed shooting on or off, plus access to the set up menu). The set up menu itself is divided into three folders allowing the adjustment of operational volumes, screen brightness, and the ability to format the inserted memory card or internal memory.

Fujifilm FinePix Z70 Fujifilm FinePix Z70
Memory Card Slot Battery Compartment

The Shooting Mode menu option provides a list of all the various modes. Starting with Program, the shooting mode with the largest amount of configurable options and then full auto mode, we then come to one of the camera's main selling points, the aforementioned SR (Scene Recognition) auto, which cleverly chooses the most applicable scene mode 80% of the time.

Next up are two modes for improving low-light photos. The Natural Light mode forces the Z70 to select a fast shutter speed in order to freeze subject movement more effectively, whilst setting a fast ISO speed without firing the flash for more natural results. It's an effective automatic way of taking photos of children indoors, for example. Natural Light and Flash is a little more exciting. When selected, the camera instantly takes 2 photos, one with flash, one without, giving you the option of which one to choose later (both are saved by the camera).

Finally an extensive range of scene modes feature standard pre-optimised settings for familiar scenes and subjects, including portraits, landscapes, sunsets and fireworks amongst its selection. Face detection, which biases the focus and exposure toward any faces in the frame, is also activated in the main menu system, as is the Red Eye Removal setting.

Fujifilm have chosen the more widely available SD than retaining historical loyalty to the now outgunned (in terms of available capacity) xD-Picture Card, a slot for which is provided at the base of the camera where it's shared with the lithium-ion battery required for power. This means that if you're shooting with the camera on a tripod via the plastic mount, you have to first remove the camera to remove the card, which is a bit of a pain but far from uncommon. The right hand flank of the Z70 (when viewed from the back) features a rather incongruous grey rubber flap covering a combined AV out and USB port, below which is a metal eyelet for attaching the provided wrist strap. There are no controls on the left hand flank.

Image Quality

All of the sample images in this Review were taken using the 12 megapixel Fine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 5.75Mb.

The Fujifilm FinePix Z70 produced images of average quality during the review period. This camera handled noise quite well, not becoming obvious until ISO 400 and then becoming progressively worse at the faster settings of ISO 800 and 1600. Chromatic aberrations were fairly well controlled, with purple fringing effects appearing only in high contrast situations. The 12 megapixel images were sharp enough out of the camera at the default sharpen setting and don't require much further sharpening in an application like Adobe Photoshop. Macro performance is below average, only allowing you to focus as close as 9cms away from the subject when the lens is set to wide-angle. Barrel distortion is clearly evident at the 36mm focal length, and the built-in flash is rather under-powered, although at least there was no sign of red-eye. The maximum shutter speed of 4 seconds is disappointing, as it doesn't allow the camera to capture enough light for many after-dark situations.


There are 5 ISO settings available on the Fujifilm FinePix Z70. Here are some 100% crops which show the noise levels for each ISO setting:

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)


ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)


ISO 1600 (100% Crop)


Focal Range

The Fujifilm FinePix Z70's 5x zoom lens provides a focal length of 36-180mm in 35mm terms, as demonstrated below.




Here are two 100% crops which have been Saved as Web - Quality 50 in Photoshop. The right-hand image has had some sharpening applied in Photoshop. The out-of-the camera images are sharp enough at the default setting and don't really benefit from further sharpening in a program like Adobe Photoshop.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)


File Quality

The Fujifilm FinePix Z70 has 2 different image quality settings available, with Fine being the highest quality option. Here are some 100% crops which show the quality of the various options, with the file size shown in brackets.

12M Fine (5.64Mb) (100% Crop) 12M Normal (4.00Mb) (100% Crop)

Chromatic Aberrations

The Fujifilm FinePix Z70 handled chromatic aberrations fairly well during the review. Some purple fringing was present around the edges of objects in high-contrast situations, as shown in the examples below.

Example 1 (100% Crop)

Example 2 (100% Crop)


The Fujifilm FinePix Z70 offers a Macro setting that allows you to focus on a subject that is 9cms away from the camera. The first image shows how close you can get to the subject in Macro mode (in this case a compact flash card). The second image is a 100% crop.

Macro Shot

100% Crop


The flash settings on the Fujifilm FinePix Z70 are Auto, Red-eye Reduction, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Synchro, Red-eye Reduction & Slow Synchro. These shots of a white coloured wall were taken at a distance of 1.5m.

Flash Off - Wide Angle (36mm)

Flash On - Wide Angle (36mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

Flash Off - Telephoto (180mm)

Flash On - Telephoto (180mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

And here are some portrait shots. Neither the Auto or Red-eye Reduction mode caused any amount of red-eye.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)

Red Eye Reduction

Red Eye Reduction (100% Crop)


The Fujifilm FinePix Z70's maximum shutter speed is 4 seconds, which is not great news if you're seriously interested in night photography. The shot below was taken using a shutter speed of 4 seconds at ISO 200.

Night Shot

Night Shot (100% Crop)

Sample Images

This is a selection of sample images from the Fujifilm FinePix Z70 camera, which were all taken using the 12 megapixel Fine JPEG setting. The thumbnails below link to the full-sized versions, which have not been altered in any way.

Sample Movie & Video

This is a sample movie at the highest quality setting of 1280x720 pixels at 30 frames per second. Please note that this 13 second movie is 36.5Mb in size.

Product Images

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Front of the Camera

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Front of the Camera / Turned On

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Isometric View

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Isometric View

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Rear of the Camera

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Rear of the Camera / Image Displayed

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Rear of the Camera / Turned On

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Top of the Camera

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Bottom of the Camera


Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Side of the Camera

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Side of the Camera

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Front of the Camera

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Front of the Camera

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Memory Card Slot

Fujifilm FinePix Z70

Battery Compartment


The Fujifilm FinePix Z70 is a well-designed, full-featured and easy-to-use point and shoot digicam that's also very good value for money - only the so-so pictures that it takes let the side down.

The Z70 is firmly aimed at the younger end of the photographic market with a range of snazzy colours, neat sliding lens cover and quick and painless uploading to your favourite social website (just so long as its YouTube and/or Facebook). It's also easy enough to use for all of the family, with a range of scene mode and the clever Automatic Scene Recognition mode doing virtually all of the work for you. 720p HD video with full use of the 5x zoom lens is the icing on the proverbial cake.

On the other hand, the merely average image quality is a disappointment, with noise and softening of detail all too apparent at ISO 400, obvious barrel distortion at the 36mm focal length, a poor macro mode and limiting maximum shutter speed of 4 seconds. You probably won't notice any of these flaws if you mostly take photos in good light - just don't try to push the Z70 too far and you'll be satisfied, if not delighted, with what this camera can achieve.

Definitely putting a smile on our faces is the FinePix Z70's eye-opening price - a mere £129.99 / $149.95 for a slim, metal-bodied, stylish 12 megapixel camera with a 5x zoom, 2.7 inch LCD screen and HD movies is a bargain in anyone's book. Subsequently the Fujifilm FinePix Z70 is a very capable, solidly built pocket point-and-shoot with an almost throw-away price-tag, making it perfectly suited to rough and tumble family life.

4 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4
Features 4
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 3
Value for money 5



FinePix Z70 / Z71

Number of effective pixels *1

12.2 megapixels

CCD sensor

1/2.3-inch CCD

Storage media
  • Internal memory (Approx. 13MB)
  • SD memory card
  • SDHC memory card*2
File format
Still image:

JPEG (Exif Ver. 2.2*3)


AVI (Motion JPEG)


WAVE format, Monaural sound

(Design rule for Camera File system compliant / DPOF-compatible)

Number of recorded pixels

Still image: 4,000 x 3,000 (12M) / 3,984 x 2,656 (10M, 3:2) / 4,000 x 2,248 (9M, 16:9) / 2,816 x 2,112 (6M) / 2,048 x 1536 (3M) / 1,920 x 1,080 (2M, 16:9) / 1,600 x 1,200 (2M) / 640 x 480 (0.3M)


Fujinon 5x optical zoom lens, F4.0 (Wide) - F4.8 (Telephoto)

Lens focal length

f=6.4 - 32.0mm, equivalent to 36.0 - 180.0mm on a 35mm camera

Digital zoom

Approx. 6.3x


Wide: F4.0 / F6.7, Telephoto: F4.8 / F8.0

Focus distance
(from lens surface)
  • Wide: Approx. 60cm / 2.0ft. to infinity
  • Telephoto: Approx. 1.0m / 3.3ft. to infinity
  • Wide: Approx. 9cm - 80cm / 3.5in. - 2.6ft.
  • Telephoto: Approx. 1.0m - 3.0m / 3.3ft. - 9.8ft.

Auto / Equivalent to ISO 100 / 200 / 400 / 800 / 1600 (Standard Output Sensitivity)

Exposure control

TTL 256-zones metering

Exposure mode

Programmed AE

Shooting modes

Natural Light, Natural Light & with Flash, Portrait, Landscape, Sport, Night, Beach, Snow, Sunset, Party, Museum, Flower, Text, Digital Image Stabilization, Auction, Successive Movie, SR AUTO (Scene Recognition Auto), Auto, Program, Night (Tripod), Portrait enhancer

Image stabilizer

Digital Image Stabilization

Shutter speed

1/4sec. to 1/2000sec., (with mechanical shutter)


Auto focus, TTL contrast AF, Tracking AF

White balance

Auto, Fine, Shade, Fluorescent light (Daylight), Fluorescent light (Warm White), Fluorescent light (Cool White), Incandescent light


Approx. 10sec. / 2sec. delay, Couple Timer, Group Timer


Auto flash
Effective range (ISO AUTO):

  • Wide: Approx. 70cm - 3.1m / 2.3ft. - 10.2ft.
  • Telephoto: Approx. 70cm - 2.7m / 2.3ft. - 8.9ft.
  • Approx. 30cm - 80cm / 1.0ft. - 2.6ft.

Flash modes
Auto, Red-eye Reduction, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Synchro, Red-eye Reduction & Slow Synchro.

LCD monitor

2.7-inch, Approx. 230,000 dots, TFT color LCD monitor; frame coverage approx. 96%

Movie recording

1,280 x 720 pixels / 640 x 480 pixels / 320 x 240 pixels (30 frames/sec.) with monaural sound
*Optical zoom function can be selectable during movie recording

Photography functions

SR AUTO (Scene Recognition Auto), Face Detection (with Auto Red-eye reduction, on, off), Framing guide, Frame No. memory, Silent mode, FinePix color

Playback functions

Face Detection, EDIT FOR BLOG, Image Search, Crop, Image rotate, Slideshow, Multi-frame playback (2/5/9/100 frames), Sorting by date, Voice Memo, Movie Edit, Mark Upload

Video output

NTSC / PAL selectable

Digital interface

USB 2.0 High-speed

Power supply

NP-45A Li-ion battery (included)


91.0 (W) x 57.1 (H) x 20.1 (D) mm / 3.6 (W) x 2.2 (H) x 0.8 (D) in.
(excluding accessories and attachments)


Approx. 124.5g / 4.4oz.
(excluding accessories, battery and memory card)

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