Ugly Camera Shoot

Ugly – ” Unpleasing..Unpromising”

At a time when digital camera sales are down and the mobile phone is all the camera people need or want, a dedicated compact camera seems as our definition suggests an unpleasant or unpromising prospect. Particularly cameras with less than 20 megapixels. How could they possibly be worth considering?

That’s exactly what I wanted to find out with this blog.

First up is the FujiFilm FinePix 2800zoom.

Headline features?

  • 2 million pixels
  • Fujinon 6x zoom (38-228m – 35mm equivalent) lens
  • Aperture F2-8/4.8/8.2,
  • 64 zone TTL metering
  • Program AE
  • ISO 100
  • 1.8 inch amorphous silicon TFT
  • Storage SmartMedia.

Next up is the Canon PowerShot A495

Headline features?

  • 10 million pixels
  • 6.6-21.6 (37-122mm – 35 mm equivalent) lens
  • Aperture F3- 5.8
  • Evaluative, centre-weighted or spot metering
  • Programs include, among others, portrait, sunset, fireworks, long shutter
  • ISO 80-1600
  • 2.5 TFT monitor
  • Storage SD

Finally the Olympus VR 370

Headline features?

  • 16 million pixels
  • 4.2-52.5 (24- 300mm – 35mm equivalent) lens
  • Aperture? (not mentioned in the manual)
  • Digital ESP metering, spot metering
  • 3inch TFT monitor
  • Various scene modes like the Canon
  • Storage SD

All three cameras were set to the basic program mode, letting the camera make all the decisions. In each series of photos, the FujiFilm is first, the Canon in the middle and the Olympus is last. All images are straight out of the camera, with no post-processing.

Looking at the images at this size there is not a lot of difference between the three.

The Canon seems a bit washed out. The FujiFilm has a lot of in camera sharpening, but not unpleasant . The Olympus is the better overall image though.

The FujiFilm, while boasting a macro mode, didn’t allow me to get very close in comparison to the other two. The Canons colours are slightly more boosted, the Olympus a little too subdued.

Not much to separate the light, at this size.

The FujiFilm decided to fire it’s flash and as a result changed the white balance of the image. All images show a good level of detail.

With the lens fully extended out for the above set of images, it’s interesting how good the FujiFilm image looks given its resolution and the level of in-camera sharpening applied. The Canon looks too soft. The Olympus is somewhere in the middle.

I really enjoyed this project. Given that the two other cameras had substantially more in terms of pixels, I was pleasantly surprised at how well the FujiFilm performed. I would prefer to have any of the three cameras featured than my phone’s camera when it comes to having a zoom function. These type of cameras are still relevant, they have a place. So, not such ugly ducklings then.

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