Fujifilm FinePix S7000 Review
Date: Aug 23, 2004
- Advanced Amateur
The Fujifilm FinePix S7000 is a digital
camera targeted to advanced amateur photographers.
It has 6.3 effective megapixels resolution (12
megapixels output) on a 1/1.7 in. CCD image sensor.
The Super EBC Fujinon lens is a 35-210 mm (35mm
format equivalent) f/2.8-8, 6x optical zoom. Note
that the S7000 is labeled as 19x Zoom (6x optical,
3.2x digital), something that Fujifilm needs to
work on correcting (after doing the right thing
with effective megapixels resolution). There is
also not the possibility to disable digital zoom,
so pay attention to the zoom bar.
We find the overall image quality of the Fujifilm
FinePix S7000 to be good.
(35mm, 35mm equivalent)
(210mm, 35mm equivalent)
In the above pictures, we show the coverage for
35mm and 210mm. The S7000 provides medium wide-angle
to medium telephoto coverage.
There still seems to be confusion among some
about the megapixels resolution of the S7000 image
sensor. The Super CCD HR used in the S7000 has
6.3 effective megapixels. It is able to output
("record" is still a little bit of semantics
play on Fujifilm's part) 12.3 megapixels through
interpolation. The important number here is 6.3
effective megapixels. Fujifilm is now reporting
this number clearly and correctly in the specifications
of all their digital cameras.
The S7000 can record images in RAW file format,
but the RAW image is unfortunately saved interpolated
12M. It takes a relatively fast 5 sec. (from the
time the green/orange light starts blinking to
when it lights steady) to save a RAW image to
memory card. The S7000 has an internal buffer
and I am able to take 2 pictures one after the
other before the camera freezes and starts writing
to memory card. You don't have to wait for all
the RAW images to finish writing; you can shoot
the next picture after about 5 sec. (using the
[The RAW file format records the image as captured
by the camera's CCD with minimal processing, and
allows you to precisely adjust white balance,
contrast, sharpness and saturation in an image
editing software without any loss of quality.]
|8mm, Programmed Auto, Pattern,
1/210 sec., F4.5, ISO 200
The S7000 has two macro modes: Standard Macro
at 10 cm (3.9 in.) and Super Macro as close as
1 cm (0.4 in.). At 1 cm in Super Macro mode, that's
very very close. Do bear in mind that in practice
it may be difficult to light your subject properly
because the lens is so close to your subject that
it may block the light or cast shadows. Though
the area covered is comparable to the super macro
on other digital cameras, for some reason, I somewhat
expected to cover a tighter area since we were
moving in so close to the subject. Otherwise,
both macro modes are very good, and you are able
to use the zoom in Standard Macro mode. I bemoan
the lack of a swivel LCD monitor on the S7000
for macro shooting. The 2-sec. self-timer helps
in eliminating camera shake.
|Auto White Balance
||WB = Fluorescent 3
As the above two pictures show, the auto white
balance works very well indoors under fluorescent
light, even better than using WB = Fluorescent
3. As expected, AWB also works very well in natural
light. The S7000 allows you to set a Custom White
Balance but it does not seem to be better than
AWB (just a tad bit cooler).
||ISO 800 (3M)
The 100% crops
above (area delimited by the white rectangle)
demonstrate the noise at the available ISO Speeds
of 200, 400 and 800. At ISO 200, noise is under
control though visible in the images when viewed
at original size. At ISO 400 and upward, noise
becomes quite visible. (Note that the image records
at only 3M at ISO 800.) ISO 200 (ISO 160 in Auto
mode) is the lowest ISO possible on the S7000
and seems to account for the noisy images.
Fujifilm's Super EBC Fujinon lens does a good
job at keeping CA under control. We found some
CA at the corner delimited by the red square at
top middle (reproduced at 100% crop at bottom
right). In everyday shots, CA is very hard to
|8mm, AE, Spot, 3 sec., F8,
AWB, Super Macro, 10 sec. Self-Timer, Tripod
The S7000 allows the use of a long shutter speed
of up to 15 sec., therefore allowing night photography.
Note, though that you'll have to switch to Manual
mode to be able to take advantage of that slow
shutter speed. Generally, with CCD image sensors,
noise usually becomes more prominent at slow shutter
For a cheap DIY backdrop, we use a black fuzzy
sweater. Normal fluorescent light bulbs from the
ceiling are the only source of illumination. We
experiment a bit to obtain the optimum exposure,
eventually settling on 3 sec. at F8, the high
ISO 200 precluding the use of a longer exposure
without the use of some kind of Neutral Density
For those who like to use the movie mode, the
image quality at 640x480 Motion JPEG (30 fps)
with sound is quite impressive.
The last feature we will mention is the histogram.
The histogram can be displayed live during Recording
Mode (Single AF mode only). You can set the histogram
to display permanently by pressing the info button
(small hard-to-find button located on left side
of camera body, just above the AF button) until
the histogram displays. The histogram is invaluable
to give an indication of under- and over-exposure
(don't rely on the LCD/EVF since the brightness
is adjustable and may be misleading).
The pictures in the Fujifilm FinePix S7000
Photo Gallery page provide a good sample of
what the S7000 is capable of. I have provided
samples at 800x600 pixels (compressed to Quality
60/100 in Photoshop Elements).
Most of the pictures were taken at Canada's
Wonderland (12M) and Centre Island (6M).
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