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Fuji FinePix S20 Pro announced

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Category: Compact Cameras

Fuji FinePix S20 Pro announced - Built to cater for the creatively-minded photographer

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Fuji FinePix S20 Pro announcedFujifilm launch the FinePix S20 Pro, a powerful enthusiasts' camera that they claim raises digital image control to new heights.

Built to cater for the creatively-minded photographer, the FinePix S20 Pro is the second camera in the FinePix range to offer Fujifilm's pioneering Super CCD SR technology, an award-winning development which underlines the importance of image quality as a whole, rather than pixel count alone.

With 6.2 million effective pixels (3.1 million S-pixels + 3.1 million R-pixels*), delivering 6.03 million recorded pixels, the camera's excellence is built on more than just pixel power. The FinePix S20 Pro's SR technology revolves around the use of paired photodiodes in place of a solitary pixel. These paired photodiodes combine to capture tonal detail missed by conventional single-pixel CCDs, particularly in low-light and high contrast scenes. The result is a camera that produces outstanding dynamic range, greater sensitivity and class-leading signal to noise ratio.

Furthermore, the FinePix S20 Pro's CCD RAW mode offers photographers the chance to save full image data uncompressed, guaranteeing every element of the captured file is ready for careful out-of-camera manipulation. The camera is also supplied with Hyper Utility HS-V2, a new software tool that enables the user to fine-tune aspects of an image such as sharpness, colour balance, and crucially, the full extent of the camera's impressive dynamic range.

Fitted with the acclaimed Super EBC Fujinon 6x optical zoom lens, Firewire and USB 2.0 connectivity, full-resolution sensitivity settings up to ISO 800 (ISO 1600 in 1,280 x 960 pixel mode) and a threaded cable release, the FinePix S20 Pro puts professional functionality into an enthusiast form. In addition, the options for external flash, via hot-shoe or PC sync socket, are a proven benefit for the studio or macro photographer.

While this camera may be uncompromising in its approach to image quality, the range of features and response speed ensure it remains natural to use. The FinePix S20 Pro's manual modes enable you to exert creative control over aperture, focusing, shutter speed and flash whilst offering a VGA digital movie mode that records at 30 frames per second (fps), with sound.


FinePix S20 Pro Zoom: features at a glance

  • Compact, SLR-style body shape to give you features and performance without bulk
  • Fourth Generation Super CCD SR sensor with 6.2 million effective pixels (3.1 million S-pixels + 3.1 million R-pixels*), delivering 6.03 million recorded pixels
  • RAW file format - data stored without processing, enabling complete fine-tuning of the image
  • Super EBC Fujinon 6x optical zoom lens equivalent to 35 - 210mm on a 35mm camera
  • Dual card format: xD-Picture Card™ and Microdrive™, for added storage flexibility
  • Full manual control
  • External flash option via PC sync socket or hot-shoe, where a more powerful flash is needed
  • USB 2.0 and Firewire (IEEE 1394) connections, allowing rapid transfer of images from camera to PC
  • VGA movie recording (30 fps) with sound, providing ultra-smooth results
  • High sensitivity settings (up to ISO 1600) to allow photography in a wide range of situations, including low light without flash
  • Live Video - enables the photographer to view the subject on a monitor without having to rely on the LCD display or Electronic Viewfinder (EVF)
  • FinePix Viewer for Professionals - Fujifilm has tailored its FinePix Viewer image management software for professionals, enabling the photographer to change camera settings, and release the shutter, from a computer
  • In the ÚK, the FinePix S20 Pro is supplied with Hyper Utility HS-V2 software, allowing image data to be fine-tuned (including sharpness, colour balance, dynamic range)

Adrian Clarke, Fujifilm's Director of Consumer Products, commented, "The S20 Pro is for people who really know their photography. Super CCD SR technology is changing attitudes to digital photography - it's no longer a case of just asking how many pixels there are.

"Think about how people look at a photograph. They don't concentrate on tiny portions of the photographic image - they look at its colour, its contrast and overall impact. In this respect, the FinePix S20 Pro stands out - its increased dynamic range and lack of noise are certain to make it a winner among enthusiast photographers."

FinePix S20 Pro versus FinePix S7000 Zoom
The FinePix S20 Pro has been introduced to sit alongside the FinePix S7000 in Fujifilm's high-end digital camera line-up. Which one suits which photographer? The output pixel count produced by the FinePix S7000 Zoom (4,048 x 3,040) lends itself to particularly big print enlargements. However, at print sizes up to A3, the improved dynamic range achieved by the FinePix S20 Pro will offer an edge over the FinePix S7000 Zoom, particularly with images taken in high contrast light conditions. Furthermore, the FinePix S20 Pro's PC sync socket will make this camera more attractive to the studio and macro flash user.

Super CCD SR sensor - High Fidelity PhotographyTM
Fujifilm's Super CCD SR provides a truer representation of the subject, retaining highlight detail and offering a four-fold increase in dynamic range. By using the innovative layout of paired photodiodes, the technology enables confident shooting in both bright and cloudy conditions, combats the bleached-out effect created by flash photography and increases exposure latitude - a great advantage in difficult lighting conditions.

The technology behind Super CCD SR
On a standard CCD, a single photodiode*** is responsible for capturing the full range of light strengths at a single location on the sensor, whereas with Super CCD SR, two photodiodes capture information on the same area of the image. These are arranged in a double-honeycomb structure comprising a larger, primary photodiode adjusted for high sensitivity, with a secondary photodiode for lower sensitivity. When combined, they offer four times the dynamic range of conventional photodiodes. This advance in technology might be compared to the evolution of the audio speaker: in an attempt to improve performance, the addition of a secondary high sensitivity cone, or 'tweeter', radically improved range and sound quality.

Technical information relating to interpolation and Fujifilm Super CCD
Fujifilm's Super CCD technology always produces a still image by processing intermediary tone and colour values between the effective pixels, no matter what the size of the output image. For instance, when using the FinePix S20 Pro (a 6mp output camera) on its 3mp setting, the camera reduces the 6 million pixel file to half size, rather than reading exclusively from the effective photodiodes on the CCD. The reason for this is that the 'chessboard' arrangement of photosites on the CCD necessitates intermediary values in order to fill the gaps. For further information on how the Super CCD processor generates intermediary pixel values, please visit:
www.superccd.co.uk


Full specifications

Number of effective pixels 6.2 million effective pixels (3.1 million S-pixels + 3.1 million R-pixels*), delivering 6.03 million recorded pixels
CCD sensor 1/1.7 inch Super CCD SR
Number of total pixels: 6.7 million
Number of recorded pixels

Still image: 2832 x 2128/2048 x 1536/1600 x 1200/1280 x 960 pixels
Movie: 640 x 480 pixels, 30 frames/sec. / 320 x 240 pixels, 30 frames/sec.

File formats Still image: JPEG (Exif Ver 2.2)
Movie: AVI (Motion JPEG)
(Design Rule for Camera File System compliant / DPOF-compatible)
Storage media xD-Picture Card (capacities currently up to 512 MB)
Lens Super EBC Fujinon 6x zoom lens, f/2.8 - f/3.1
Lens focal length Equivalent to 35 - 210mm on a 35mm camera
Focus TTL-contrast type, Auto focus, Manual focus
Focus distance Normal: Wide-angle: Approx. 50cm to infinity
Telephoto: Approx. 90cm to infinity
Macro: Approx. 10cm - 80cm
Super Macro: Approx. 1cm - 20cm
Shutter speed Auto / SP: 1/4 sec. to 1/1000 sec.
SP (night scene mode only): 3 sec. to 1/250 sec.
P/S/A: 3 sec. to 1/1000 sec.
Manual: 30 sec. to 1/10000 sec.
Bulb: up to 30 sec.
Aperture f/2.8 to f/11 (13 levels in 1/3 EV increments)
Sensitivity Auto: Equivalent to ISO 160 - 800
Manual: Equivalent to ISO 200/400/800/1600
(Resolution is set at 1M for shots taken at ISO 1600)
During setting of CCD-RAW: ISO 200/400
Exposure control 64-zone TTL metering - multi, spot, average
Exposure modes Programmed AE, Aperture Priority AE, Shutter Priority AE, Manual
Digital zoom 2.2x (1280 x 960 pixels), 1.77x (1600 x 1200 pixels),
1.4x (2048 x 1536 pixels)
Shooting modes Normal: Auto, Scene Position (Portrait, Landscape, Sports, Night Scene),
Programmed AE, Aperture Priority AE, Shutter Priority AE, Manual
Continuous:
- Top 10 (max 4.5 frames/sec. up to 10 frames)
- Final 10 (max 4.5 frames/sec. up to 10 frames)
- Long period (max. 1 frames/sec. up to 40 frames - only at 1M mode)
Colour Modes B&W / Chrome / Standard
Voice memo Up to 30 sec. WAV format
Movie recording 640 x 480 pixels: 30 frames / sec.
320 x 240 pixels: 30 frames / sec.
With monaural sound, AVI format (Motion JPEG)
Playback Single frame (with max.18 x playback zoom), 9 multi-frame
White balance

Automatic (AUTO, SP)
Manual 9 positions selectable in P/S/A/M

Viewfinder 0.44 inch approx. 235,000 pixels electronic viewfinder, built-in dioptre adjustment (approx. 100% coverage)
LCD monitor 1.8 inch low temperature polysilicon TFT (approx. 118,000 pixels, approx 100% coverage)
Flash Auto flash using flash control sensor
Effective range: Wide angle: approx. 0.3m - 8.5m
Telephoto: approx. 0.9m - 7.9m
Flash mode Flash mode: Auto, Red-eye Reduction, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Synchro., Red-eye Reduction + Slow Synchro
External flash options Non-dedicated hot-shoe
PC sync socket for connection to studio and external flash systems
Self-timer Approx. 2 or 10 sec. delay
Digital interface USB 2.0, IEEE 1394
Video out NTSC / PAL selectable
Printing PictBridge, DPOF and Exif Print 2.2 compatible
Terminal USB 1.1 and 2.0 compatible interface (1.1 speed), 3 volt power-input socket, video out
Power source 4 x AA size alkaline batteries (included) / 4 x Ni-MH rechargeable batteries (available separately) or AC power adapter AC-5VH / AC-5VHS (optional)
Dimensions 121 (W) x 81.5 (H) x 97 (D) mm
Weight Approx. 500g (excluding batteries and media)

Accessories included

  • Hyper Utility software (HS-V2 version 2.0)
  • 16MB xD-Picture Card™
  • 4 x AA-type alkaline batteries
  • Shoulder strap
  • Lens cap
  • Lens cap holder
  • PC sync socket cap
  • USB cable
  • Firewire (IEEE 1394) cable
  • A/V cable
  • CD-ROM with USB driver, FinePix Viewer, ImageMixer VCD2 for FinePix , RAW File Converter LE

Optional accessories

  • xD-Picture Card: 16, 32, 64, 128, 256, 512MB capacities currently available
  • PC card adapter (DPC-AD)
  • CompactFlash Card Adapter (DPC-CF)
  • USB Memory Card Reader (DPC-R1)
  • USB Pen Drive/xD-Picture Card reader (DPC-UD1)
  • Fujifilm 7-in-1 Memory Card Reader (DPR-71)
  • AC power adapter (AC-5VH/5VHS)
  • Soft case
  • Ultra-fast charger with 6 x 2100mAh Ni-Mh batteries
  • Standard battery charger (BK-NH) with 2 x 1700 Ni-Mh batteries
  • Overnight charger with 4 x 1800mAh Ni-Mh batteries
  • Wide conversion lens (WL-FX9B)
  • Tele conversion lens (TL-FX9B)
  • Adapter ring (AR-FX9)

The FinePix S20 Pro will be available in the UK from leading photographic retailers from April 2004. Box contents may vary by international territory. Pricing will be determined nearer to the date of retail launch.**

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