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You are hereHome > Digital Camera Reviews > Fujifilm FinePix S9100

Fuji Digital Cameras


Fujifilm FinePix S9100 Review

Review Date: Feb 27, 2007

Category: Prosumer - Advanced Amateur

Fujifilm FinePix S9100


The Fujifilm FinePix S9100 is a digital camera targeted to advanced amateur photographers. It has 9.0 effective megapixels resolution on a 1/1.6 in. 6th Gen. SuperCCD HR image sensor. The Fujinon lens is a 28-300 mm (35mm format equivalent) F2.8(W)-F4.9(T), 10.7x optical zoom.

We love the 28mm wide-angle coverage and find the overall image quality of the Fujifilm S9100 to be very good.

10.7x Wide Optical Zoom
Wide-angle 28 mm Tele 300 mm
Wide-angle 6.2mm
(28mm, 35mm equivalent)
Telephoto 66.7mm
(300mm, 35mm equivalent)

In the above pictures, we show the coverage for a 28mm wide-angle and 300mm tele. Though some long zoom digital cameras have a higher zoom capability, it is the 28mm wide-angle on the S9100 that is the kind of coverage we like to see in a prosumer level digital camera. Also, the 10.7x optical zoom brings far subjects close with a more-than-enough 300mm tele coverage. The lens is threaded and has a 58mm diameter. It accepts an optional WL-FXS6 Wide Angle Lens (for a 35mm equivalent of 22mm).

6.2mm, Manual, Pattern, Custom WB
2.5 sec., F5.6, ISO 80, Macro

The Fujifilm S9100 can focus as close as 10 cm (3.9 in.) in Macro mode and 1 cm (0.4 in.) in Super Macro mode.

Auto White Balance Indoors
AWB Custom WB
AWB Custom WB

As the above two pictures show, the Auto White Balance (AWB) has a slight yellow cast under artificial tungsten light. The S9100 allows you to set a Custom (manual) White Balance, which gives excellent results. As expected, AWB works very well in natural light.

ISO Comparisons
ISO 80
ISO 80
ISO 100 ISO 200
ISO 100 ISO 200
ISO 400 ISO 800
ISO 400 ISO 800
ISO 1600  
ISO 1600  

The 100% crops above (area delimited by the white rectangle) demonstrate the low noise at ISO 80, 100, 200 and 400. Noise starts to be visible at ISO 800 but is usable, and quite visible at ISO 1600. Despite advertised stated improvements, there does not seem to be any observable differences between the 5th and 6th Gen. Super CCD HR in the S9100. The low-light performance also does not unfortunately approach the exceptional low noise capability of the Fujifilm F30 (probably due to the higher pixel count).

Chromatic Aberrations

CA (purple fringing) can be visible in everyday shots. In the shot above, CA is visible at the position delimited by the red square at top left (reproduced at 100% crop at bottom right).

Long Shutter Speed
Long Exposure
6.2mm, Manual, Pattern, 25 sec., F5.6, ISO 80
Custom WB, Macro, Self-Timer (2 sec.), Tripod Used

The Fujifilm S9100 provides a maximum long shutter speed of 30 sec. in Manual Mode, making it possible to take some nice night shots. Here I'm checking out the presence of noise at long exposure (noise usually increases the longer the shutter is left open). As usual, I place Bamm-Bamm under my office desk, in the shadows, to obtain a long exposure of 25 sec. at F5.6.

Since the longest shutter speed in PASM goes only up to 4 sec., I have to switch to Manual mode. I use the Exposure Indicator to help me get an approximation of when correct exposure is achieved. Note that the Exposure Indicator gives only an approximation and some bracketing is necessary to obtain correct exposure.

To eliminate camera shake, I place the camera on a tripod and use the self-timer (set to fire after 2 sec.). Since the normal minimum focusing distance is 40cm (1.3 ft.), I switch Macro ON to allow me to move in closer for a tighter shot. No noise reduction is required to produce rich dark blacks, and so no extra time is added to the 25 sec. exposure.

The pictures in the Fujifilm FinePix S9100 Photo Gallery page provide a good sample of what the camera is capable of. I have provided samples at 800x600 pixels (compressed to Quality 60/100 in Photoshop Elements) as well as the 3488 x 2616 pixels original size (click on the image for the original version).

You can safely assume that most macro shots and slow shutter speed shots required the use of a tripod. Any image that is adjusted for levels in Photoshop has "_adjusted" appended to the file name.

I have defaulted the image size to 800x600 pixels. For those who have their monitor resolution set to 1024x728 pixels, everything should snugly fit and you should not have to scroll to see the whole image. If your monitor is set to 800x600 pixels resolution, start the slide show and then scroll to the right to position the image within your screen width. Then, press F11 (if you are using Internet Explorer) to switch to full screen mode, and the image should fill your screen nicely. Press F11 again at any time to switch your monitor display back to normal mode.

To return to this page from the Photo Gallery, click on the animated graphics of the camera.

Please open and download the original size version only if you need to and only once to your hard drive -- and save me some precious bandwidth. Thanks!


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