The Fujifilm FinePix S8200 was announced in January 2013 and is a bridge camera which has 40x optical zoom, 10 fps continuous shooting and full manual controls. It is available for around £180.
Fujifilm FinePix S8200 Features
The Fujifilm FinePix S8200 has a 16 megapixel BSI CMOS sensor and a 40x optical zoom lens, which is a 35mm equivalent of 24-960mm, with optical image stabilisation to keep blur and shake to a minimum. To help when framing your shots, particularly at longer focal lengths, there is an electronic viewfinder (EVF) which helps you keep the camera steady. The super macro mode allows you to shoot objects just 1cm away from the camera and it can shoot full resolution images at 10 fps.
There is an Auto mode and a number of scene modes to choose from as well as full manual controls. Other shooting modes include Motion Panorama, which shoots up to 360°, HDR mode and Advanced Filter which includes cross screen, miniature and toy camera.
Videos are recorded in full 1080p with stereo sound and optical zoom available. High speed movie mode allows you to record at 480 fps to really slow down the action. The camera can be connected to a HD TV via a HDMI cable.
16 megapixel BSI CMOS sensor
40x optical zoom lens (35mm equiv: 24-960mm)
Optical image stabilisation
3.0 inch 460k dot LCD screen
Built-in electronic viewfinder
Full manual controls
Full 1080p HD video recording
1cm minimum focusing distance
Motion panorama mode
10 fps continuous shooting
Fujifilm FinePix S8200 Handling
The Fujifilm FinePix S8200 has a similar look and build to a DSLR - it has a good rubber grip. The lens barrel is also rubberised and there is even a rubber area on the rear for your thumb to rest. The EVF is bright - ideal for shooting in low light or with the zoom extended and is activated via a button. The zoom can also be adjusted via a side lever on the lens barrel and the button which activates the flash is located just above the lever.
There are plenty of other buttons on the camera - on the top are buttons for exposure compensation and continuous shooting as well as the zoom rocker, on / off switch, shutter release and mode dial. On the rear are movie record, playback and display buttons as well as a rotating wheel which can also be used as a d-pad. It also gives access to flash, macro and self-timer and function. The function button is customisable - you can choose between ISO, image size, white balance , focus mode and more.
The LCD is a good size and has a decent 460k dot resolution. The S8200 has a clear menu system and is certainly an easy to use camera. Battery life is rated at very respectable 300 shots according to CIPA test results when using the supplied alkaline batteries. If you want more you can purchase Ni-MH rechargeable batteries which offer 500 shots or lithium batteries for 700 shots.
We took a number of shots to test the camera's responsiveness, from switch on to first photo, shot to shot, focusing speed etc. We take a number of shots and then use the average to ensure accurate and consistent tests, making it easy to compare with other cameras.
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo
Shot to Shot without Flash
Shot to Shot with Flash
Continuous Shooting - SH1 1.2
Continuous Shooting - SH2 VGA
Continuous Shooting - L
Continuous Shooting - M
Continuous Shooting - H
Focusing is a little on the slow side when using the zoom at its longest. The continuous shooting L, M and H modes all record in full 16 megapixel resolution, with SH1 and SH2 modes both restricted to 1.2 megapixels and VGA size respectively.
Fujifilm FinePix S8200 Performance
Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review, photos and product ratings.
Fujifilm FinePix S8200 Sample Photos
Sample Photos - Colour reproduction is excellent and images are well exposed. Portrait shots have decent skin tones and are free of red-eye when using the flash.
Fujifilm FinePix S8200 Lens test images
Lens Performance - Images have a reasonable amount of detail but are a little softer in the corners. Purple fringing is a slight issue in contrasting areas of the image. The lens has a 1cm minimum focusing distance of just 1cm in super macro mode which allows for a decent close-up shot.
Fujifilm FinePix S8200 ISO test images
ISO Noise Performance - Noise is low at ISO 100, with the very slight appearance of noise visible at ISO 200 and 400. At ISO 800 images become a little softer. Noise becomes significant at ISO 1600, with colour reproduction suffering. Noise worsens a little at ISO 3200, and again so at ISO 6400, but image quality isn't too bad at these higher settings. ISO 12800 produces images of poor quality, with this best avoided when possible.
Fujifilm FinePix S8200 White-balance test images
White Balance Performance - Under the incandescent lights the Auto White Balance (AWB) performs well, although there is a slight colour cast. The incandescent preset takes a better picture. Under the fluorescent lights the AWB performs well - there are three different fluorescent presets, two of which take a good picture under the fluorescent lights.
Panorama 1 | 1/170 sec | f/8.4 | 4.3 mm | ISO 100
Panorama 2 | 1/180 sec | f/8.4 | 4.3 mm | ISO 100
Panorama mode - Panorama shots are easy to take and have a decent amount of detail as well as being stitched together really well. You're able to shot 120º, 180º and 360º panoramas.
Fujifilm FinePix S8200 Digital filters
Digital Filters - When shooting in PSAM modes you can apply a colour filter to your image for an extra touch of creativity. There is also the Advanced Filter mode which has a lot of choice such as HDR, partial colour, toy camera modes and a lot more. We've included plenty of examples above.
Video - Videos are recorded in full 1080p HD with optical zoom available. Quality is good although you can hear the zoom whilst shooting and the focusing can take a few seconds to catch up.
The Fujifilm FinePix S8200 is typical of many bridge cameras on the market. You get loads of useful features which make using the camera a similar experience to a DSLR. Highlights include 10 fps continuous shooting, good battery life, the electronic viewfinder and full manual controls. The downside is that image quality isn't the best you'll get on a camera though, but for those who like to share pictures on sites such as Facebook, this isn't really a big issue for many users.
The Panasonic Lumix TZ70 offers a 30x optical zoom lens, built-in Wi-Fi, a high-resolution electronic viewfinder as well as a lower resolution 12.1 megapixel sensor. Say what? Yes, a lower resolution sensor.
3 Mar 2015 8:44AM