This is a long-term, ongoing review of my Fujifilm FinePix F200EXR 12MP Super CCD digital camera, which I purchased on Wednesday, April 08, 2009 (just for the record).
To view and download full-resolution samples and test photos taken with my F200, visit Fuji F200 Full-Sized Photos.
Flash at close distances
The F200 has the amazing ability to throttle flash output for correct exposure even when photographing subjects at macro distances.
At the camera shop where I was contemplating between buying the deep red Canon Powershot A480 or the F200, this exceptional performance by the F200 was one of the deciding factors that pushed me to get the F200 in the end. The A480 simply washed out the macro photo with its internal flash.
Today, outside the house, I saw a Lynx Spider resting on a leaf. One side of the leaf was fully lit by the strong morning sun, while the part of the leaf the Lynx rested on was in the shadows. I just made sure FORCED FLASH was turned on, and got the camera as close to the bug as possible. The F200 was in EXR Auto mode, and it quickly primed its internal settings to Macro Mode when it detected that the subject it was focusing on was within the macro range.
Click to view the full-resolution, unedited version (12 MP, 3.9 MB, ISO 200, f/9, 1/100 sec):
I’d say the F200 does macro fill-flash exceedingly well.
Higher ISO performance
The F200 earns very high marks in my books for being able to produce natural-looking photos, even when taken at high ISO values of ISO800 and higher.
This is especially true when the EXR S/N (Signal to Noise, Low Noise priority) mode is utilized.
The resolution drops to 6 MP in this mode, but this is a far better option than having a noisy, mottled, 12 MP image.
Fuji seems to have made sure that images shot at high ISO values retain beautiful tonality and colors, and just enough detail to make for a printable A4 (8” x 10”) photo.
The image of a colorful jumping spider was taken in the shade, and the F200 automatically activated Macro Mode and S/N EXR modes, and bumped the ISO up to ISO800.
Click to view the full-resolution, unedited version (6 MP, 2.5 MB, ISO 800, f/3.3, 1/75 sec):
Here’s a 100% crop of just the spider. Notice how nicely detail, color and tonality are captured.