Fujifilm F60fd Review
Fujifilm FinePix F60fd Exposure
Saturation & Hue Accuracy
Some oversaturation in strong reds and blues, with small shifts in accuracy.
Saturation. The Fujifilm FinePix F60fd oversaturates strong reds, blues and some greens, but this is fairly common among consumer digital cameras. Yellows are actually undersaturated quite a bit. Most consumer digital cameras produce color that's more highly saturated (more intense) than found in the original subjects. This is simply because most people like their color a bit brighter than life.
Skin tones. Here, with the color balanced properly for the light source, the FinePix F60fd's Caucasian skin tones had a red cast, while darker skin tones were pushed toward orange slightly. Where oversaturation is most problematic is on Caucasian skin tones, as it's very easy for these "memory colors" to be seen as too bright, too pink, too yellow, etc.
Hue. The Fujifilm FinePix F60fd showed some small color shifts relative
to the correct mathematical translation of colors in its subjects, pushing
cyan toward blue, and yellow toward green. But overall performance here
is pretty good. Hue is "what color" the color is.
|See full set of test images
See thumbnails of all test and gallery images
Exposure and White Balance
Indoors, incandescent lighting
Best color with Manual white balance, though still a bit cool. Slightly more than average positive exposure compensation required.
|Auto White Balance
|Incandescent White Balance
|Manual White Balance
Color balance indoors under incandescent lighting was quite red in Auto white balance mode, while the Incandescent setting produced strong warm cast. Manual mode produced the most accurate overall color, though it was a little cool and greenish. The Fujifilm FinePix F60fd required a +0.7 EV exposure compensation boost to get a reasonably bright exposure, which is more than average, and the exposure is still slightly dim. Our test lighting for this shot is a mixture of 60 and 100 watt household incandescent bulbs, a pretty yellow light source, but a very common one in typical home settings here in the U.S.
Very high contrast outdoors, with slightly cool color.
|Auto White Balance,
|Auto White Balance,
Outdoors, the Fujifilm FinePix F60fd produced very high contrast under harsh lighting. In both shots above, exposures have very few midtones, and very extreme highlights and shadows. Noise and noise suppression just about obliterate detail in the shadows areas, though highlights hold onto slightly more detail. Overall color is a bit cool in both images, with a slight magenta cast in the portrait shot, and a slightly bluish tint in the house shot.
Very high resolution, 2,000 lines of strong detail.
|Strong detail to
2,000 lines horizontal
|Strong detail to
2,000 lines vertical
Our laboratory resolution chart revealed sharp, distinct line patterns all the way down to about 2,000 lines per picture height in both directions, without any visible extinction. Use this number to compare with other cameras of similar resolution, or use them to see just what higher resolution can mean in terms of potential detail.
Sharpness & Detail
Fine detail is soft from noise suppression, with practically no detail in the shadows. High contrast areas show some minor edge enhancement.
|Definition of high-contrast
elements is affected by
noise suppression and there's
evidence of minor edge enhancement.
|Subtle detail: Hair
Noise suppression blurs
detail in areas of subtle contrast,
as in the darker parts of hair here.
Sharpness. The Fujifilm FinePix F60fd captures a lot of fine detail, though detail definition suffers slightly from noise suppression. In high contrast areas, such as the trim lines in the crop above left, the camera produces slight enhancement artefacts. Edge enhancement creates the illusion of sharpness by enhancing colors and tones right at the edge of a rapid transition in color or tone.
Detail. The crop above right shows strong noise suppression, with the darker areas of hair showing hardly any detail. Individual strands are only hinted at even in the brighter areas. Noise-suppression systems in digital cameras tend to flatten-out detail in areas of subtle contrast. The effects can often be seen in shots of human hair, where the individual strands are lost and an almost "watercolor" look appears.
ISO & Noise Performance
Moderately high noise suppression blurs detail even at the lower ISO settings, while strong noise and very strong noise suppression become too strong at the higher settings.
|ISO 100||ISO 200||ISO 400|
|ISO 800||ISO 1,600||
(2,848 x 2,136)
(2,048 x 1,536)
The Fujifilm FinePix F60fd kicks in its noise suppression fairly early on, with some blurring present even at the lowest sensitivity setting. At ISO 200, detail is quite soft, and the results just get progressively worse from there. At ISOs 1,600 and above, the image is so blurry and the noise pattern so distinct that it looks like an illustration. See the Print Quality section below, to find out what the recommended maximum size print is at each ISO setting.
Extremes: Sunlit and low light tests
High resolution with a lot of detail overall, though high contrast severely limits shadow detail. Slightly bright contrast, but still good results overall. Slightly limited low-light capabilities.
|+0.7 EV||+1.0 EV||+1.3 EV|
Sunlight. The Fujifilm FinePix F60fd had some trouble with the deliberately harsh lighting in the test above, and produced very strong contrast with hot highlights and very deep shadows. Both image noise and noise suppression efforts result in big losses in shadow detail, though the highlights do manage to hold on to some. Overall color is slightly cool, with reddish skin tones. Be sure to use fill flash in situations like the one shown above; and it's better to shoot in the shade when possible.
Because digital cameras are more like slide film than negative film (in that they tend to have a more limited tonal range), we test them in the harshest situations to see how they handle scenes with bright highlights and dark shadows, as well as what kind of sensitivity they have in low light. The shot above is designed to mimic the very harsh, contrasty effect of direct noonday sunlight, a very tough challenge for most digital cameras. (You can read details of this test here.)
Low light. The Fujifilm FinePix F60fd was limited in terms of low-light performance, as only the 3,200 and 6,400 sensitivity settings produced what I would call bright results at the lowest light level. As the sensitivity decreased, so did the performance, so that images at ISO 100 were only bright at one foot-candle. Obviously, the trade-off for the higher sensitivities is much stronger noise, though even at ISO 100, noise is a factor. The camera's night scene mode was however able to capture bright images down to 1/4 foot-candle at ISO 100, by increasing maximum exposure time from one second to eight seconds. Color balance was slightly magenta or green from the Auto white balance in many of the dimmer shots. The camera's AF system was able to focus down to just under the 1/16 foot-candle light level with and without AF assist enabled, which is more than its exposure system can really handle.
How bright is this? The one foot-candle light level that this test begins at roughly corresponds to the brightness of typical city street-lighting at night. Cameras performing well at that level should be able to snap good-looking photos of street-lit scenes.
NOTE: This low light test is conducted with a stationary subject, and the camera mounted on a sturdy tripod. Most digital cameras will fail miserably when faced with a moving subject in dim lighting. (For example, a child's ballet recital or a holiday pageant in a gymnasium.) For such applications, you may have better luck with a digital SLR camera, but even there, you'll likely need to set the focus manually. For information and reviews on digital SLRs, refer to our SLR review index page.
Coverage and Range
Modest flash power at close range, though coverage is fairly uniform. Exposure compensation has no effect on flash exposures.
|35mm equivalent||105mm equivalent|
|Normal Flash, Default Exposure||Slow-Sync Flash, Default Exposure|
Coverage and Exposure. Flash coverage was slightly uneven at wide angle, but more uniform at telephoto. In the Indoor test, the Fujifilm FinePix F60fd's flash underexposed our subject at its default setting, but increasing the exposure compensation had no effect on overall brightness. The camera's Slow-Sync flash mode produced somewhat brighter and more even results, though with a slight warm cast from the background lighting. However, again, the exposure compensation system had no effect here.
ISO 100 Range. At the wide angle zoom setting and ISO 100, flash intensity began to decrease from 7 feet on. At full telephoto, 6 feet was already dim.
|Manufacturer-Specified Flash Range|
Auto ISO 800
Auto ISO 800
Manufacturer Specified Flash Test. In the shots above, the FinePix F60fd performs as Fujifilm says it will, though it had to raise the sensitivity quite a bit at both wide angle and telephoto settings, to ISO 800, where image quality degrades significantly. Our standard test method for flash range uses a fixed setting of ISO 100, to provide a fair basis of comparison between cameras. We've now also begun shooting two shots using the manufacturer-specified camera settings, at the range the company claims for the camera, to assess the validity of the specific claims.
Good print quality at 11x14 inches. ISO 800 images are soft but usable at 8x10, ISO 1600 shots are usable at 5x7. Higher ISOs are not worth the effort to capture, let alone print.
Though shots from the FinePix F60fd are usable when printed at 13x19 inches, a noticeable softness on the left side of wide-angle images makes 11x14-inch prints preferable. You can print at 11x14 inches up through ISO 400. At ISO 800, you're better off dropping to 8x10 or 5x7, the latter being noticeably better. ISO 1,600 shots are decent at 5x7 but streaky shadow noise is too pronounced to call them anything but usable, but at 4x6 it's better. ISO 3,200 and 6,400 are really too soft to bother printing.
Shots captured in Tungsten lighting, however, fare more poorly, dropping down at least one print size when enlarged, thanks to significant anti-noise processing in shadows and areas of finer detail, like hair. Such detail in ISO 100 shots is so soft we have to go from 11x14 to 8x10, when 5x7's are better. ISO 200, 400, and 800 shots are better at 5x7, and ISO 1,600 shots are only good at 4x6 inches.
Testing hundreds of digital cameras, we've found that you can only tell just so much about a camera's image quality by viewing its images on-screen. Ultimately, there's no substitute for printing a lot of images and examining them closely. For this reason, we now routinely print sample images from the cameras we test on our Canon Pro9000 studio printer, and on the Canon iP5200 here in the office. (See the Canon Pixma Pro9000 review for details on that model.)
The images above were taken from our standardized test shots. For a collection of more pictorial photos, see our Fujifilm FinePix F60fd Photo Gallery.
Recommended Software: Rescue your Photos!
Just as important as an extra memory card is a tool to rescue your images when one of your cards fails at some point in the future. We get a lot of email from readers who've lost photos due to a corrupted memory card. Memory card corruption can happen with any card type and any camera manufacturer, nobody's immune. A lot of "lost" images can be recovered with an inexpensive, easy to use piece of software though. Given the amount of email I've gotten on the topic, I now include this paragraph in all my digital camera reviews. The program you need is called PhotoRescue, by DataRescue SA. Read our review of it if you'd like, but download the program now, so you'll have it. It doesn't cost a penny until you need it, and even then it's only $29, with a money back guarantee. So download PhotoRescue for Windows or PhotoRescue for Mac while you're thinking of it. (While you're at it, download the PDF manual and quickstart guide as well.) Stash the file in a safe place and it'll be there when you need it. Trust me, needing this is not a matter of if, but when... PhotoRescue is about the best and easiest tool for recovering digital photos I've seen. (Disclosure: IR gets a small commission from sales of the product, but I'd highly recommend the program even if we didn't.) OK, now back to our regularly scheduled review...
Not sure which camera to buy? Let your eyes be the ultimate judge! Visit our Comparometer(tm) to compare images from the Fujifilm FinePix F60fd with those from other cameras you may be considering. The proof is in the pictures, so let your own eyes decide which you like best!
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Note: For details, test results, and analysis of the many tests done with this camera, please click on the tabs at the beginning of the review or below.