Fuji FinePix 1400A sleek design, great 1.3 megapixel picture quality, a 3x zoom lens, and a great price!
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FinePix 1400 Sample ImagesReview First Posted: 6/6/2000
|We've begun including links in our reviews to a Thumber-generated index page for our test shots. The Thumber data includes a host of information on the images, including shutter speed, ISO setting, compression setting, etc. Rather than clutter the page below with *all* that detail, we're posting the Thumber index so only those interested in the information need wade through it! ;)
(618k) This is a tough shot for many digicams, due
to the extreme tonal range (which is why we set it up this way). The trick
is to hold highlight and shadow detail without producing a "flat"
picture with muddy colors, which the F1400 Zoom did pretty well. We shot
this image with the daylight (618k)
white balance setting, as it produced the most accurate color balance.
Color saturation and balance look great, especially in the sometimes difficult
blue flowers and pants (some digicams reproduce these with a purplish
hue). We shot our main image with a +0.6 EV adjustment, which accurately
exposed the shadow areas without getting too hot in the highlights on
the flowers (the white collar of the shirt is a little blown out, but
the overall exposure at +0.6 was the best). Resolution and detail
look great throughout. We always check the green leaves next to the shirt
and the strands of the model's hair and they look pretty crisp. The shadow
areas also show plenty of detail with just a moderate amount of noise.
The table below shows the results of a range of exposure settings from
zero to +1.5 EV.
Exposure Compensation Settings:
(645k) The F1400 Zoom also does a nice job with
this "portrait" shot, thanks to the camera's 3x zoom lens. (Shorter
focal length lenses tend to distort facial features in close-up shots
like this and the availability of longer focal lengths is a key feature
if you're going to be shooting close-up people shots). For this shot,
we snapped one image at the daylight (636k)
white balance setting and one at automatic.(645k)
Both settings looked nearly identical, so we chose automatic for
our main series as it appeared the most accurate, particularly in the
skin tones. (We did note that both this and the wider shot above showed
a slightly greenish tint in the house siding in the background. This didn't
appear to affect the skin tones though.) As usual, our main
shot (645k) needed less exposure compensation
than the wider outdoor portrait, so we snapped this image at +0.3 EV,
although the highlights in the model's face were slightly blown out at
this setting. (We chose it though, preferring the brighter overall look
of the image.) Resolution and detail again look great, with a very moderate
noise level. The table below shows the results of a range of exposure
settings from zero to +1.2 EV in the automatic white balance setting.
Exposure Compensation Settings:
flash: (579k) The F1400 Zoom performs
well in this category, despite the usual limitations of only having a
built-in flash. First, we snapped an image using the Forced
(579k) flash mode. The resulting image was well-lit,
although with some harsh shadows and a slightly bluish cast in the shadow
areas. Overall, though, the image looks pretty good as the highlight areas
aren't too bright and the color balance is nice. Next, we shot with the
flash's Slow Synchro (581k)
mode, which brightened the image by letting in more ambient light
with a slower shutter speed. However, the entire image has a very warm
cast. Finally, we stayed in the Slow Synchro mode and decreased the exposure
compensation to -0.3, resulting in this (583k)
slightly darker but still very warm image. In the end, we chose
the standard flash setting for our main image, due to the more accurate
color balance overall.
portrait, no flash: (588k) This shot
is 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. We chose the incandescent
(588k) white balance setting for our main shot,
with a +0.9 EV adjustment in the exposure. The resulting picture had a
slightly pinkish cast overall, but was really quite acceptable: It retained
some of the character of the room lighting, without having an overpowering
color cast. The automatic (590k)
white balance setting resulted in a much warmer image (also shot
at +0.9 EV), so we felt that the incandescent setting had the best color
overall. Shadow detail looks very nice, with only a moderate amount of
noise. The table below shows a range of exposure settings from zero to
+1.2 EV in the incandescent white balance setting.
Exposure Compensation Settings:
(702k) NOTE that this is the "new" house
shot, a much higher-resolution poster than we first used in our tests.
To compare the F1400 Zoom with previously tested cameras, here's a shot
of the original house poster at the automatic
(692k) and daylight (705k)
white balance settings.
For this shot, we tested the automatic (702k)
and daylight (705k)
white balance settings, which again produced similar results.
The daylight setting turned out to be just slightly warmer than the
automatic setting, which we picked for our main series. Resolution and
detail look very good, especially in the tree limbs above the house.
We picked up a little softness in the brick areas, but overall, the
image is pretty sharp, particularly given the bargain price the 1400
sells for (for a camera with an optical zoom lens). Color saturation
also looks nice. Just the tiniest halo around the light and dark edges
(about two pixels) gives away the in-camera sharpening, but the effect
isn't too distracting. Noise remains very moderate, mostly noticeable
in the telltale shingle area. The table below shows our standard resolution
and quality series.
(689k) 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.
We shot this series with the automatic (687k)
and daylight (689k)
white balance settings, which looked nearly identical. In the
end, we settled on the daylight setting for our main series. This test
is the strongest test of detail of any we do, and the bright white of
the central bay window often tricks digicams into losing detail in that
area. The F1400 Zoom fell prey to the extreme highlight somewhat, as
it shows just the barest outline of the bay window's detail. Resolution
and detail look good overall, although just slightly soft. Color balance
and saturation look about right, with very vibrant greens and blues.
Noise is minimal overall. The table below shows our standard resolution
and quality series.
||Lens Zoom Range: We've received a number of requests
from readers to take shots showing the lens focal length range of those
cameras with zoom lenses. So, we're happy to show you the following views
from the F1400 Zoom at full wide angle, 3x telephoto and 2x digital telephoto.
The lens covers quite a wide angle at its widest setting, but a fair bit
of barrel distortion (curvature) is visible in the cement curb along the
edge of the street.
poster: (670k) We shot this test
with the automatic (672k) and
daylight (670k) white
balance settings. Since the automatic setting produced very warm results,
we chose daylight for its more accurate color balance (particularly in
the skin tones). The F1400 Zoom does a nice job with this shot, which
has a propensity to be noisy, and the noise level in the series below
is reasonably low. Resolution and detail also look nice, particularly
noticeable in the subtle detail of the bird's wings and the tiny silver
threads on the Oriental model's robe. The flowers in the blonde model's
hair also look sharp. Color balance looks very good also (we always check
the blue robe, which is a difficult hue for many digicams to reproduce
accurately). The red vest also looks about right. A very nice job! Below
is our normal resolution and quality series in the daylight white balance
(665k) The F1400 Zoom does pretty well in the macro
category, capturing a minimum area of 3.56 x 2.67 inches (90.31 x 67.73
mm). Resolution, detail and color all look great, although we noticed
quite a bit of barrel distortion from the lens' wide angle setting. The
F1400 Zoom's flash (650k)
does a pretty good job of throttling down without being tricked too much
by the shiny coin. We also snapped an image at the 2x
digital telephoto (165k) setting, which produced
surprisingly crisp results (but with a slightly warm color cast).
test target: (595k) With this test target,
we shot at the daylight (590k)
and automatic (590k)
white balance settings. We found the daylight setting a little too warm,
while the automatic setting produced more accurate results, particularly
in the white of the small resolution target. The net effect was a slightly
yellowish cast, but good color overall. Color saturation and balance look
very good, with bright, well-saturated, accurate colors. The only failing
is a slight weakness in the subtractive primaries of cyan, magenta, and
yellow. The F1400 Zoom also does great with the smaller red and magenta
color blocks on the middle, horizontal color chart, which is a problem
area for many digicams that want to blend the two together. Likewise,
the subtle tonal variations in the "B" range of the Q60 chart
are completely visible and clearly distinguishable. The shadow area of
the briquettes shows very good detail with only a moderate amount of noise.
Overall, we're very pleased with the F1400 Zoom's performance. Following
is our standard resolution and quality series.
As excellent as the FinePix 1400 Zoom's overall performance was, and as low as its selling price is, we guess it's reasonable to expect there'd be some area where it didn't match the performance of more expensive digicams. It looks like low light shooting is that area, as the 1400 really doesn't get down very dark relative to some of the higher-priced cameras in its resolution category. In our tests, it produced bright pictures down to a light level of about 4 foot-candles (44 lux), and usable but dark ones at levels of 2 foot-candles (22 lux). For comparison, a well-lit city night scene under typical street lighting corresponds to a light level of about 1 foot-candle (11 lux). Thus, if you need to shoot pictures by moonlight, the Finepix 1400 Zoom wouldn't be your first choice. It should handle reasonably well-lit residential and office interiors just fine though.
||Flash Range Test
(This test was added in August 1999, so cameras tested before that time won't have comparison pictures available. As we go forward though, all the new models will have similar tests available). Fuji rates the F1400 Zoom's flash as effective out to a maximum of 11.5 feet (3.5m). We found this to be reasonably accurate as the flash maintained its intensity out to the 11 foot mark. The flash was still effective out to 14 feet, but a noticeable decrease in brightness occurred beginning at 12 feet. The table below shows results obtained at a range of distances from eight to 14 feet.
Flash Range/Distance, High Intensity:
||ISO 12233 ("WG-18") resolution
target: In our resolution test, the Finepix 1400 Zoom scored about
in the middle of the 1280x960 pixel pack, with a visual resolution that
we called at 600 lines per picture height horizontally, and 550-600 vertically.
Only slight color aliasing was observed, but gently sloping horizontal
lines appeared somewhat prone to showing "jaggies." The in-camera
sharpening looked just about right though, with good crisp edges, but
no sign of "halos" around the light/dark boundaries. The tables
below show our usual resolution/quality series, for both wide angle and
telephoto lens focal lengths.
Resolution/Quality series, Wide Angle:
Resolution/Quality series, Telephoto:
Resolution/Quality series, Digital Telephoto:
||Viewfinder accuracy/flash uniformity target:
We found the F1400 Zoom's optical viewfinder to be quite "tight",
showing only about 74 percent of the final image area captured at wide
angle (151k) and about 81 percent at the telephoto
(151k) end. (Note that we've changed our terminology
slightly in this area: Previously we would have a viewfinder showing this
behavior as "loose.") Framing accuracy results were identical
for both the 1280 x 960 and 640 x 480 resolution sizes. We also noticed
that the framing seems to be shifted towards the upper right corner and
slanted ever so slightly towards the lower left corner (this slant is
possibly due to a shifted CCD on our test model). Frame accuracy was a
little better with the LCD monitor, which showed approximately 87 percent
at the wide angle (153k) end
and about 95 percent at the telephoto (150k)
end. These numbers are for the 1280 x 960 image size, which differed
slightly from the 640 x 480 resolution size only on the wide
angle (45k) setting, where it produced about
92 percent accuracy. (We usually like to see as close to 100 percent accuracy
as possible with the LCD monitor). We also shot at the 2x
digital telephoto (49k) setting, which would
probably have produced close to 100 percent frame accuracy, if adjusting
the framing had been easier. Because of the digital enlargement, the lines
of the target got very soft and a little distorted in digital telephoto
mode, so it was hard to set the framing precisely.
Distortion on the F1400 Zoom was fairly high at the wide angle end, as we measured the barrel distortion at 1.0 percent. Distortion was slightly less at the telephoto end, with a 0.5 percent pincushion distortion. Chromatic aberration is present but low, we caught about two pixels of faint coloration on each side of the black lines in wide angle mode, virtually none at the telephoto end of the lens' range. (This distortion is visible as a very slight colored fringe around objects at the edges of the field of view on the resolution target). Flash uniformity looks quite good across the lens' range, with just a small amount of falloff at the corners in wide angle.
Top 3 photos this month win:
1 Canon PIXMA PRO-100
2 Canon PIXMA MG6320
3 Canon PIXMA MG5420