Fuji FinePix S602 ZoomFuji's latest electronic SLR offers improved image quality, fast response, high ISOs, and 30 fps movies at full VGA resolution!
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FinePix S602 Sample ImagesReview First Posted: 4/18/2002
Sample Images for the
|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!|
The extreme tonal range of this image makes it a tough shot for many digicams, which is precisely why we set it up this way. The object is to hold highlight and shadow detail without producing a "flat" picture with muddy colors, and the S602 Zoom performed nicely. The shot at right has a +0.3 EV exposure adjustment, which brightened the midtones and lost only minimal highlight detail. I'd rather see the midtones just a bit lighter, but boosting the exposure compensation to +0.6 EV loses too much of the highlight detail in Marti's shirt. I chose the Auto white balance setting for the main shot, though the Daylight setting produced good color as well. The Manual white balance resulted in a warm shot. Skin tones look very good - They're just a bit on the pinkish side, but I like that look myself, and have observed that people will generally pick a slightly too-pink tone as being the most appealing, over one that's closer to neutral. The 602 does an excellent job with the always-difficult blue flowers, and all the colors are pretty much spot on. (The red flowers are a tad bright though.) Resolution is very high for a three megapixel sensor, with great detail in Marti's face and in the flowers. Details are also fairly well preserved in the shadows, where there's only moderate noise.
(A note on resolution and detail with the FinePix S602 - This camera uses one of Fuji's "Super CCD" sensors, which has its pixels arranged in a honeycomb pattern. This produces slightly more detail than a typical arrangement of rectangular pixels, but requires that the image be interpolated up to a 6 megapixel file to show all that detail. The result is that images look somewhat softer onscreen than those from a typical 3 megapixel camera, due to the interpolation involved. Printing them on a high-quality printer shows the benefit of the Super CCD approach fairly clearly though. - It's thus unfortunately the case that comparing images online tends to do the Super CCD photos a minor injustice, in that they'll look less sharp than they really are, since the image you're looking at is being stretched across more screen real estate.)
To see the full exposure series from zero to +1.0 EV, see files F62OUTAP0.HTM through F62OUTAP3.HTM on the thumbnail index page.
Results are similar to the shot above, but with much higher resolution. The shot at right is the default exposure setting, as no exposure compensation was needed to get good midtones. I switched to the Daylight white balance with this shot, as it produced more accurate color here. The S602 Zoom's 6x lens helps prevent any distortion of Marti's features, and produces a very sharp image. Detail is excellent in her face and hair, and strong in the shadows. Noise is moderate, with a slightly large grain size.
To see the full exposure series from zero to +1.0 EV, see files F62FACDP0.HTM through F62FACDP2.HTM on the thumbnail index page.
|Indoor Portrait, Flash:
Slight color cast from the background lighting, but good exposure overall.
The S602 Zoom's flash illuminates the subject well, with good intensity. At the default setting, intensity, it's just slightly dim. Boosting the exposure compensation to +0.7 EV brightens the overall image just enough. The strong background incandescent lighting results in an orange color cast, which effects the white value of the model's shirt as well as the background wall. Attaching an external flash to the camera provides more even lighting, as it can be bounced onto the subject, but it doesn't dispel the orange cast. (I probably could have done so, by using a much faster shutter speed in manual mode. - I'll reshoot this if I can find the time...) I really like the fact that the 602 sports a standard hot shoe, permitting it to be used with any garden-variety auto flash unit.
Portrait, No Flash:
A little difficulty interpreting the Incandescent light source, but a vast improvement over previous Fuji cameras.
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, and the S602 Zoom's white balance system had a little trouble here, producing various color casts. I chose the Auto white balance for the main image, though overall color is a bit pinkish. (For my tastes, the ideal handling of a shot like this is to leave a little of the color cast of the original lighting in the final image, to convey the "mood" of the shot. - I'd like to see about half as much color cast as the Auto setting leaves here though.) The Incandescent setting resulted in a warmer, yellowish cast, while the Manual setting produced slightly warm, greenish results. I was able to tweak the Manual white balance somewhat, however, and get more accurate results (click here for the best color balance of that series). The blue flowers appear purplish, a common problem among digicams for this shot, particularly given the lighting, but overall color is fairly good. The main image has a +1.0 EV exposure adjustment. Following is an ISO series.
To see the entire exposure series from zero to +1.3 EV, see files F62INAP0.HTM through F62INAP4.HTM on the thumbnail index page.
Manual White Balance Tweaks
Good resolution, but somewhat soft details.
Both the Auto and Manual white balance settings produced nearly identical results, so I chose the Auto setting for the main image. Daylight white balance produced a slightly warm color balance. Exposure is a little bright in this shot, blowing out the white trim of the house a little.
There's a lot of detail here, particularly visible in the tree limbs and fine foliage. As noted above, the process of interpolating the 3 megapixel CCD image up to the final 6 megapixel file size leaves the details a bit soft-looking. Printed on a photo-quality inkjet though, they look pretty good. There's also some softness in the corners, which an astute reader pointed out to me is a consequence of the 602's lens not performing well in "flat field" conditions with relatively short focusing distances. - This shot is about a worst case for this condition, the outdoor shots of the house (see below) are *much* sharper in the corners. Overall, there's a lot of detail here, for what's basically a 3+ megapixel sensor.
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. The S602 Zoom captures great detail throughout the frame, with strong definition in the fine foliage in front of the house and in the tree limbs. Color looks accurate, with good saturation. The S602 Zoom picks up the stronger details in the bright, white bay window area, as well as some of the fainter ones, revealing a good dynamic range. The shadow area above the front door also fares well, showing most of the brick pattern (with low noise).
There's also an oddness in the fine foliage details here that I've seen before on SuperCCD cameras: The honeycomb sensor layout really "likes" vertical and horizontal details, to the point that it will produce apparently rectilinear details where there's actually only random patterns. - You can see this a little bit in the bush with red flowers in front of the house, and in some of the bare tree limbs above and to the right of the house.
The table below shows our standard resolution and quality series, followed by an ISO and sharpness series.
|Lens Zoom Range
Excellent 6x 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 (6x, in this case), and at full telephoto with the digital zoom enabled. The S602 Zoom's lens is equivalent to a 35-210mm zoom on a 35mm camera. Following are the results at each zoom setting.
Good resolution and detail, with good color.
I chose the Auto white balance setting for this shot, as it produced the best overall color balance. (The large amount of blue in the composition often tricks digicams, so the S602 Zoom performs well here.) That said, the Daylight setting also produced good results. Manual white balance was just a little too cool, however. Skin tones look good in the Auto white balance, as does overall color. The Oriental model's blue robe is about right, though just a little greenish, without any strong purple tints in the deep shadows. (This is a tough blue for many digicams to get right.) Resolution is high, with good detail in the embroidery of the blue robe.
Exceptional macro performance.
The S602 Zoom captured a very tiny macro area at its Super Macro setting, measuring 1.49 x 1.12 inches (38 x 28 millimeters). The macro area in normal macro mode is also good, measuring 3.95 x 2.97 inches (100 x 75 millimeters). Resolution is high in both shots, with great detail in the coins, brooch, and dollar bill. Details are sharp, though some corner softness is present. Color balance is a little warm, but still good. The camera's flash throttled down well for the macro area, though the large lens produced a shadow in the bottom of the frame.
|"Davebox" Test Target
Color and saturation are both good, good detail in both shadows and highlights
Both the Manual and Auto white balance settings produced good results, though the Manual setting appeared the most accurate. Daylight white balance produced a slightly warm color balance, but results were still good. The large color blocks are pretty accurate, with good saturation, although the yellow block is a little dull and the red one a little bright. Exposure looks pretty good, as the S602 Zoom distinguishes the subtle tonal distributions of the Q60 chart well, and both highlight and shadow detail is preserved very well.
Excellent low-light shooting, though color balance is a little warm.
The S602 Zoom has a full Manual exposure mode, with exposure times as long as 15 seconds. As a result, it does pretty well at capturing images under very dim lighting. In my tests, the camera captured bright, clear images at light levels as low as 1/16 foot-candle (0.067 lux) at all of its ISO settings, though color balance became somewhat warm at the lowest light levels. Noise levels are surprisingly low for such long exposures at relatively high ISO settings. The table below shows the best exposure obtained for each of a range of illumination levels. Images in this table (like all of our sample photos) are untouched, exactly as they came from the camera.
|Flash Range Test
Bright and effective to 12 feet, usable to 14 feet.
The S602 Zoom's onboard flash maintained pretty good intensity all the way out to 14 feet from the test target, though overall brightness dwindled slightly starting around the 12 foot mark. The flash is almost too bright at eight feet, but an adjustment in the flash brightness level would resolve this in practical applications. Below is our flash range series, with distances from eight to 14 feet from the target.
|ISO-12233 (WG-18) Resolution Test
The S602 Zoom's Super CCD performed very 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 vertically and horizontally, but showed "strong detail" out to at least1,150 lines. "Extinction" of the target patterns occurred at about 1,450 lines.
Optical distortion on the S602 Zoom is rather high at the wide-angle end, where I measured an approximate 1.13 percent barrel distortion. The telephoto setting fared a little better, as I measured approximately 0.51 percent pincushion distortion. Chromatic aberration is very low, showing only about two or three lightly-colored pixels on either side of the target lines. However, the strong corner softness in this near-field/flat-field shooting condition (see my comments above, under the "House" poster shot for more on this) increases the effect. (Chromatic aberration is visible as a very slight colored fringe around the objects at the edges of the field of view on the resolution target.)
Resolution Series, Wide Angle
Viewfinder Accuracy/Flash Uniformity
Almost 100 percent accuracy on the LCD monitor.
The S602 Zoom's electronic optical viewfinder crops the image just slightly, showing a frame accuracy of approximately 94 percent at wide-angle and approximately 96 percent at telephoto. The LCD monitor was slightly more accurate, measuring about 99 percent at wide-angle and almost exactly 100 percent at telephoto. Since I normally prefer to see LCD monitors as close to 100 percent accuracy as possible, the S602 Zoom performs very well here. Flash distribution at wide angle is a little uneven, with some falloff at the corners of the frame. At telephoto, the flash is very even and a little brighter.
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