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FujiFilm's FinePix S2 Pro digital camera. Courtesy of FujiFilm, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. FinePix S2 Pro - samples online!
(Sunday, June 2, 2002 - 14:50 EDT)

Numerous sample images from Fuji's upcoming digital SLR...

Date Junichi of the Japanese Miscall website has this weekend posted the first sample photos we've seen from FujiFilm's upcoming S2 Pro SLR digital camera. As usual, there's little information provided on the page as to how the photos were taken except to say that the camera used was a prototype (it is actually described as a "mass production" prototype, which along with the Japanese ship date only a few weeks away from now suggests to us that this camera is fairly close to the expected final version. Five of the images (DSCF0019.JPG, DSCF0023.JPG, DSCF0039.JPG, DSCF0044.JPG and DSCF0046.JPG) were taken with the camera's sharpening set to "soft", and the first of these images was also taken with the saturation set to "high".

Shortly after the Miscall photos were posted, Yamada Kumio of the digitalcamera.jp website chipped in with his own more detailed gallery, directly comparing the S2 Pro with Canon's EOS D60 and Nikon's D100 cameras using a standard scene that will by now be very familiar to our readers. Yamada-san identifies the ISO ratings at which the photo were taken, and also offers a portrait photo comparison to show flesh tones. He tells us that the camera used for these photos is a beta version, but has the same image quality that final-version cameras will have. Yamada also makes a number of notes about the camera in use:
  • He found it possible to get about 560 photos off 4 AA alkaline batteries and 2 CR123A Lithium batteries, with combined use of both a Microdrive and standard CompactFlash card (the camera uses both types simultaneously -- Mike).
  • The S2 Pro viewfinder has a somewhat narrower field of view than the Nikon D100.
  • The noise reduction algorithm in the S2 Pro seems to be substantially more effective than the S1 Pro.
  • After the 7-shot buffer (2 frames per second) becomes full, the camera can capture about one frame every two seconds.
  • When you lift your finger from the shutter button, the camera immediately begins processing images, so in short bursts it is possible to get more than 7 frames at 2fps without filling the buffer.
  • Moire didn't seem to be too much of a problem.
  • JPEG file size at 4,256 x 2,848 is approximately 4.5MB.
  • The RAW files and conversion software seemed quite satisfactory in use.
  • RAW file size is approximately 13MB.
  • It is possible to output 8-bit data from RAW files with the conversion software.
  • RAW files converted at 8-bit are noticeably better quality than in-camera JPEGs.
  • On an Intel Pentium IV machine at 1.6GHz, RAW files are converted in about 20 seconds.
(Our apologies for any errors in the above translation; Japanese translation is not our strongest point!)

A few other notes: For the standard 'street scene' samples, a 17-35mm F2.8 lens was used on the Nikon and Fuji cameras, and an EF 16-35mm F2.8L lens was used on the Canon. The portrait photos were taken at ISO 100 with the Fuji and Canon cameras, and ISO 200 with the Nikon, set to daylight white balance. For all photos, the saturation, tone and sharpness on the S2 Pro were set to standard, and the camera was in 4,256 x 2,848 pixel mode. The D100 and D60 photos were taken in JPEG Fine mode with standard settings.

Source: Miscall / digitalcamera.jp

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