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Digital Cameras - Fuji FinePix A340 Zoom Test Images

 

I've begun including links in our reviews to a Thumber-generated index page for the test shots. The Thumber data includes a host of information on the images, including shutter speed, ISOsetting, compression setting, etc. Rather than clutter the page below with *all*that detail, we're posting the Thumber index so only those interested inthe information need wade through it!

 

"Sunlit" Portrait:
(This is my new "Outdoor" Portrait test - read more about it here.)

High resolution and strong detail, with good color. Contrast is high, however, and a lot of subtle detail is traded away to keep the image noise down.

The extreme tonal range of this image makes it a tough shot for many digicams, which is precisely why I set it up this way, and why I shoot it with no fill flash or reflector to open the shadows. The object is to hold both highlight and shadow detail without producing a "flat" picture with muddy colors, and the Fuji FinePix A340 Zoom produced good color but with very high contrast that lost a fair bit of highlight detail.

The shot at right was taken with a +0.7 EV exposure compensation adjustment, which sacrificed highlight detail to get reasonably bright midtones. I chose the Auto white balance setting over the slightly cooler Daylight setting for the main series.

Skin tones are good, though just slightly reddish, and the blue flowers in the bouquet are rendered very well. (Many digicams have trouble with this blue, but the A340 Zoom gets about the right balance between blue and purplish tints.) Color looks good throughout the rest of the frame as well, though the red flowers are a bit hot. Resolution is good for a three-megapixel camera, and edges are quite sharp, but the camera gives up a lot of detail in the subtly shaded areas of Marti's hair.

To view the entire exposure series from zero to +1.3 EV, see files A34OUTBAP0.HTM through A34OUTBAP4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.




 

Closer Portrait:

Good resolution and detail, but high contrast and overly "hot" skin tones.

Color balance and overall exposure appear similar to the wider shot above. The shot at right was taken with a +0.3 EV exposure compensation adjustment, which resulted in overly hot highlights, but rather dark midtones and shadows. The Fuji A340 Zoom's 3x zoom lens helps prevent geometric distortion of Marti's features, and captures sharp details. Resolution and detail are much higher in this close-up shot, though the anti-noise processing again decreases clarity in some areas of Marti's hair.

To view the entire exposure series from -0.3 to +1.3 EV, see files A34FACBAM1.HTM through A34FACBAP4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.



 

Indoor Portrait, Flash:
Normal Flash
Default Exposure
Slow-Sync Flash
+0.3 EV

A moderately powerful flash, though pretty good coverage. Strong color cast from the background lighting.

The Fuji FinePix A340 Zoom's built-in flash proved a little dim, though coverage is actually fairly even on the subject. (The A340's exposure compensation adjustment doesn't affect normal flash exposures.) With the normal flash mode, overall color is warm with a noticeable red-orange cast created by the background incandescent lighting. The camera's Slow-Sync flash mode results in a brighter overall exposure. The longer exposure time brightens the shot, but also increases the warm cast from the background lighting. I chose an exposure compensation adjustment of +0.3 EV, as anything brighter only intensified the harsh highlights.



 

Indoor Portrait, No Flash:
Auto White Balance
Incandescent White Balance

Nearly accurate color with the Incandescent white balance setting, and a slightly bright exposure.

This shot is always a very tough test of a camera's white balance capability, given the strong yellowish color cast of the household incandescent bulbs used for the lighting. Though slightly warm and yellow, the A340 Zoom's Incandescent white balance setting did the best job here, as the Auto setting resulted in a stronger red cast. I personally prefer a bit less color cast left in this shot, but many people prefer to see more of the color of the original lighting like this. (It also tends to be a bit less apparent when printed out on an inkjet printer, vs viewed on-screen.) I shot the main image with a +0.7 EV exposure compensation adjustment, which left the image a little dark overall, but avoided problems with the highlights on Marti's shirt. Image noise is very high, and obscures the finer details.

To view the entire exposure series from zero to +1.7 EV, see files A34INTP0.HTM through A34INTP5.HTM on the thumbnail index page.



 

House Shot:
Auto White Balance
Daylight White Balance

High resolution and detail, though high image noise as well. Nearly accurate color.

I chose the Fuji A340 Zoom's Auto white balance setting for the main shot here, despite a slight red tint. (The Daylight setting resulted in a warmer, yellow color cast.) Resolution is high, but the camera's anti-noise processing leaves the shadowed areas of the bricks on the front of the house looking almost like they were finger-painted. While a lot of fine detail is visible, the noise reduction processing exacts a heavy toll in areas of subtle contrast. Details are fairly sharp throughout most of the frame, but soften in the two bottom corners.



 

Far-Field Test

High resolution and strong detail in areas of high contrast, but detail is lost in areas where contrast is more subtle.

This image is shot at infinity to test far-field lens performance. NOTE that this image cannot be directly compared to the other "house" shot, which is a poster, shot in the studio. The rendering of detail in the poster will be very different than in this shot, and color values (and even the presence or absence of leaves on the trees!) will vary in this subject as the seasons progress. In general though, you can evaluate detail in the bricks, shingles and window detail, and in the tree branches against the sky. Compression artifacts are most likely to show in the trim along the edge of the roof, in the bricks, or in the relatively "flat" areas in the windows.

This is my ultimate "resolution shot," given the infinite range of detail in a natural scene like this, and the A340 Zoom did pretty well with it. Detail is strong in the tree limbs over the roof and fine foliage in front of the house, though details are slightly soft overall. Lens distortion results in a good bit of softness in the lower corners of the frame as well. The camera picks up moderate detail in the bright white paint surrounding the bay window, a trouble spot for many digicams, but was doubtless helped a good bit by the hazy conditions when these photos were shot. Detail is also moderate in the shadow area above the front door. The A340's overly aggressive noise-reduction processing shows itself here again, in the form of obscured detail in the bricks on the front of the house. Overall color looks good, as does exposure. The table below shows a standard resolution and quality series.

Resolution Series:

Wide Angle "Fine"
JPEG
"Normal"
JPEG
2,272 x 1,704
A34FAR2272F
A34FAR2272N
1,600 x 1,200
A34FAR1600
-
1,280 x 960
A34FAR1280
-



 

Lens Zoom Range

A fairly typical 3x zoom range.

I routinely shoot this series of images to show the field of view for each camera, with the lens at full wide angle, at maximum telephoto (3x, in this case), and at full telephoto with the digital zoom enabled. The A340 Zoom's lens is equivalent to a 38-114mm zoom on a 35mm camera. That corresponds to a moderate wide angle to a moderate telephoto. Following are the results at each zoom setting.

Wide Angle
3x Telephoto
Digital Telephoto



 

Musicians Poster
Auto White Balance
Daylight White Balance

Slightly warm color from the blue in the composition, and good detail.

This shot is often a tough test for digicams, as the abundance of blue in the composition frequently tricks white balance systems into producing a warm color balance. Both the A340 Zoom's Auto and Daylight settings were tricked, and produced rather warm casts. As the Auto setting had the least of the two, I chose it for the main shot. The red cast creates purplish tints in the blue background, as well as in the deep shadows of the blue robe. Detail is very strong in the embroidery of the blue robe, and is good in the beaded necklaces and flower garland as well.



 

Macro Shot
Standard Macro Shot
Macro with Flash

About average macro performance, though good detail. Flash throttles down a bit too much.

The Fuji FinePix A340 Zoom performed about average in the macro category, capturing a minimum area of 3.13 x 2.35 inches (80 x 60 millimeters). Resolution is very high, and detail is strong in the dollar bill, brooch, and coins. Details are also sharp, with just a little softness in the corners of the frame. The A340 Zoom's flash throttled down a bit too much for the macro area (probably fooled by the reflection from the brooch), and creates an uneven exposure. - Plan on using external lighting for your closest macro shots with the A340.



 

"Davebox" Test Target
Auto White Balance
Daylight White Balance

Good overall exposure, though a warm color cast.

The Fuji A340 Zoom's Auto and Daylight white balance settings both produced warm color balances here, but I chose the Auto setting because it had a lesser cast. Exposure is about right, and the camera has no trouble distinguishing the subtle tonal variations of the Q60 target. The large color blocks look bright and appealing, but all the warm tones are pretty dramatically oversaturated. The shadow area of the charcoal briquettes shows moderate detail, and image noise is somewhat high.



 

Low-Light Tests

Limited low-light capabilities, but good enough results under light levels equivalent to average city street lighting at night. Very limited low-light autofocus ability though.

The Fuji A340 Zoom produced clear, bright, usable images only down to the one foot-candle (11 lux) light level, a light level that corresponds to that of typical city street lighting at night. Color balance was warm with the Auto white balance setting, and became progressively warmer as the exposure lowered. Image noise is high, but the grain pattern is somewhat faint, causing it to be less noticeable. The most significant limitation for after-dark shooting with the A340 is probably its autofocus system, which can't quite focus at the level of typical city street lighting at night. (Make sure you have a brighter object somewhere near the center of the frame, for the camera to focus on.) The table below shows the best exposure I was able to obtain for each of a range of illumination levels. Images in this table (like all our sample photos) are untouched, exactly as they came from the camera.

(Note: If you'd like to use a light meter to check light levels for subjects you might be interested in shooting, a light level of one foot-candle corresponds to a normal exposure of two seconds at f/2.8 and ISO 100.)

  1 fc
11 lux
1/2 fc
5.5 lux
1/4 fc
2.7 lux
1/8 fc
1.3 lux
1/16 fc
0.67 lux
ISO
100
Click to see A34LL03.JPG
2 sec
f2.8
Click to see A34LL04.JPG
2 sec
f2.8
Click to see A34LL05.JPG
2 sec
f2.8
Click to see A34LL06.JPG
2 sec
f2.8
Click to see A34LL07.JPG
2 sec
f2.8



 

Flash Range Test

Flash range of 14 feet, but the camera "cheats" to get there.

The Fuji FinePix A340 Zoom had a flash range of 14 feet, but it "cheated" a little by boosting its ISO to achieve it. This does give a greater range, but the images are much noisier as a result.

8 ft 9 ft 10 ft 11 ft 12 ft 13 ft 14 ft
Click to see A34FL08.JPG
1/60 sec
f4.8
ISO 100
Click to see A34FL09.JPG
1/60 sec
f4.8
ISO 125
Click to see A34FL10.JPG
1/60 sec
f4.8
ISO 160
Click to see A34FL11.JPG
1/60 sec
f4.8
ISO 160
Click to see A34FL12.JPG
1/60 sec
f4.8
ISO 100
Click to see A34FL13.JPG
1/60 sec
f4.8
ISO 250
Click to see A34FL14.JPG
1/60 sec
f4.8
ISO 250



 

ISO-12233 (WG-18) Resolution Test

Very high resolution, 1,200 lines of "strong detail." Average barrel distortion, low pincushion. Low chromatic aberration, good corner to corner sharpness.

The Fuji FinePix A340 Zoom performed well on the "laboratory" resolution test chart. It started showing artifacts in the test patterns at resolutions as low as 800 lines per picture height, in both horizontal and vertical directions. I found "strong detail" out to about 1,200 lines. "Extinction" of the target patterns occurred around 1,350 lines.

Optical distortion on the A340 Zoom is about average at the wide-angle end, where I measured approximately 0.7 percent barrel distortion. The telephoto end fared much better, as I measured only 0.04 percent barrel distortion (about one pixel) there. Chromatic aberration is fairly low, showing about three pixels of rather faint coloration on either side of the target lines. (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.) Sharpness in the corners of the frame is better than average.

Resolution Series, ~60 mm
Wide Angle "Fine"
JPEG
"Normal"
JPEG
2,272 x 1,704
A34RES2272F
A34RES2272N
1,600 x 1,200
A34RES1600
-
1,280 x 960
A34RES1280
-


 

Resolution Test, Zoom Series
2,272 x 1,704
(Fine, Wide)
A34RESW
2,272 x 1,704
(Fine, Tele)
A34REST



 

Viewfinder Accuracy/Flash Uniformity

A rather tight optical viewfinder, and slightly tight LCD monitor.

The A340 Zoom's optical viewfinder showed about 81 percent of the final image area at wide angle, and about 79 percent at telephoto. The LCD monitor showed 91 percent of the frame at wide angle, and about 89 percent at telephoto. Flash distribution is uneven and dim at wide angle, with falloff at the corners and edges of the frame. At telephoto, flash distribution is more uniform and brighter.




A340 Review
A340 Test Images
A340 Specifications
A340 "Picky Details"
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