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Fujifilm FinePix S8000fd Optics


Lens

Zoom
A very wide-ranging 18x optical zoom that starts at 27mm eq., with good performance.

27mm
486mm
5.1x Digital Zoom

The Fujifilm FinePix S8000fd zooms over the equivalent of a 27 - 486mm range, a very generous zoom range. Results are quite good at wide-angle, with reasonably sharp details across the frame and low coma distortion in the corners. Some chromatic aberration is visible in the corners though, but not unexpected for this wide focal length. Results were good at telephoto as well, however a moderate amount of chromatic aberration is visible in the corners and along the edges, as well as some pincushion geometric distortion. (Both are fairly typical factors in long-zoom digicams.) The 5.1x digital zoom performs as one might expect, with the image being very soft and devoid of fine detail. No surprise really, considering a 5.1x digital zoom from an 8 MP sensor interpolates up from a sensor area of only about 308K pixels!

Macro
A larger than average macro area in the normal mode, but a tiny area in Super Macro, but at the cost of more distortion. Flash exposes fairly well in normal macro mode.

Standard Macro Macro with Flash Super Macro

The Fujifilm FinePix S8000fd's normal macro setting did OK in our test, but it captured a larger than average minimum area measuring 4.18 x 3.13 inches (106 x 80 millimeters). Details were a bit soft, with noticeable light drop-off ("vignetting") and moderate blurring in the corners. The camera's Super Macro setting captured a much smaller area, a very tiny 1.07 x 0.80 inches (27 x 20 millimeters), but the very close shooting range made lighting difficult. Detail was strong, and resolution high, but with significant softening in the corners from the lens, moderate levels of chromatic aberration, and visible barrel distortion. (Most cameras have some softening in the corners in macro mode, but few show this much distortion.) The flash throttled down pretty well, but due to the very close distance, exposure was somewhat uneven in Super Macro mode. (The brooch blocked the light from one of the lamps.)

Distortion
About average barrel distortion at wide-angle, higher than average pincushion at telephoto.

Barrel distortion at 18mm is 0.8 percent
Pincushion at 486mm is 0.6 percent

The Fujifilm S8000fd's 0.8 percent barrel distortion at wide-angle is about average among the cameras we've tested (but its 27mm setting is wider than most), and is noticeable in some images. (As we sometimes see in cameras we test, the Fujifilm S8000fd's distortion at wide angle isn't a simple bulging in the middle, instead creating almost a "moustache shape", curving out in the middle, but in slightly at both ends.) At the telephoto end, the Fujifilm S8000fd's 0.6 percent pincushion is higher than average, and also noticeable in some shots. This is the tendency for the lens to bend straight lines outward (like a barrel -- usually at wide-angle), or inward (like a pincushion -- usually at telephoto).

Chromatic aberration
High at wide angle, higher still at telephoto. Extends fairly deep into the frame too.

Wide: High, top left @ 200 percent Wide: High, top right @ 200 percent
Tele: Very high and bright, top left @200 percent Tele: Very high and bright, top right @200 percent

Chromatic aberration is rather high at wide-angle, showing about 8 - 10 pixels of bright coloration on either side of the target lines. The effect increases at telephoto focal lengths, with 10 - 12 pixels of very bright coloration, and extends fairly deep into the frame. (This distortion is visible as a very slight colored fringe around the objects at the edges of the field of view on the resolution target.) Overall, the chromatic aberration from the Fuji S8000fd's lens is higher than we'd like to see at both ends of its zoom range, and is noticeable in quite a few shots containing high-contrast elements.

Corner Sharpness
Slight softening in the corners of the frame at wide angle, moderate softness in the bottom corners at telephoto.

Wide: Slightly soft in the upper left corner. Wide: Sharp at the center.
Tele: Moderately soft in the lower left corner. Tele: Sharper at the center.

The Fujifilm S8000fd produced slightly soft corners at wide-angle, with all four corners showing about the same amount of softness. The center is very sharp. At telephoto, the lower corners are a bit softer than the top corners, while the center remains fairly sharp. In all cases, the softness doesn't extend very far into the frame, but the chromatic aberration does, and it's arguable which is worse. In general, chromatic aberration can be fixed to some extent in software, so we're usually a bit more tolerant of it than blurring. The Fujifilm S8000 has a lot of CA though...

Viewfinder

Coverage
Very good accuracy with both the LCD monitor, and electronic viewfinder (EVF).

27mm eq., EVF 486mm eq., EVF
27mm eq., LCD 486mm eq., LCD

The Fuji S8000fd's electronic optical viewfinder and LCD monitor showed essentially identical results, with about 99 percent frame accuracy for both wide-angle and telephoto.