Choosing The Right Camera For You (Part 2) - Fujifilm FinePix HS30EXR, Fujifilm x100

7/23/2012 11:31:36 AM

If you ideal camera is a superzoom

High-power zoom lenses in an easy-to-use compact body

Description: Fujifilm FinePix HS30EXR - $450/16MP

Fujifilm FinePix HS30EXR - $450/16MP

The HS30EXR from Fujifilm is a superzoom camera that has everything the average photographer could want. It comes with a 30x optical zoom lens, giving an equivalent focal length of 24-720mm, a three-inch tilting LCD screen and an electronic viewfinder. Along with these features, the HD30 also has Fujifilm’s EXR sensor, giving it fantastic performance when shooting in low-light.

The top three features to look out for in a superzoom

  1. Large zoom range: a long zoom range allows you to take wide-angle shots as well as photos of distant subjects.
  2. Optical zoom: you’re looking for your camera to have a large optical range rather than digital, as this maintains image quality.
  3. Image stabilisation: with such a large lens, look out for a superzoom with image stabilisation. This will help to reduce blur caused by camera shake.

Superzoom cameras are commonly called bridge cameras. This is because they act as a sophisticated automatic camera, bridging the knowledge and user gap between compact and more advanced cameras.

The common feature of these cameras is the long zoom lens. Superzooms have some of the longest lenses available, and they are getting longer with each new development. Many of the lenses now equal the focal length of several DSLR lenses, making them the perfect choice for photographers who want to shoot any subject.

The design and handling of most superzoom cameras is not unlike a traditional DSLR. This makes for a more user-friendly design, allowing them to utilise the long zoom lens without having to struggle with a small body and tiny controls.

Many superzoom cameras retain all of the automatic settings commonly found in compact cameras, but also take on some of the manual options from more advanced cameras. This makes them ideal for the beginner photographer who wants a good all-round camera that is capable of photographing every type of subject. However, it also makes them an excellent choice for slightly more advanced photographers looking for a second camera that offers a compact solution for longer zoom lengths.


The huge zoom length makes them ideal for shooting any subject

The design of the body makes changing settings very easy

Superzoom are fairly cheap considering the array of functions


Image quality can sometimes take a hit at longer focal lengths

Some superzooms still rely on auto settings, which can limit control

Superzoom lenses are long, often making them difficult to balance

If you ideal camera is an advanced compact

Small and portable cameras with more advanced features and handling

Description: Fujifilm x100 - $1,200/12.3MP

Fujifilm x100 - $1,200/12.3MP

The Fujifilm X100 comes with a sensor that you’d expect to find more at home in a DSLR, as well as all of the advanced manual setting available. The X100 doesn’t, however, have an automatic shooting mode, which makes it more suited to experienced photographers. It also has a fixed focal length lens, meaning that it cannot zoom at all, which many users could find limiting.

The top three features to look for in an advanced compact

  1. Large sensors: advanced compact cameras commonly have larger sensors when compared to other compact cameras, giving excellent image quality.
  2. Manual features: advanced manual control allows users to select the best settings for each individual shot.
  3. RAW shooting: look out for a RAW shooting option on your compact, so you have greater flexibility in the editing process.

Advanced compact cameras try to bridge the gap from simple automatic compacts and more advanced models like CSCs and DSLRs. They are designed to have a large amount of advanced features, offering a more comprehensive package for photographers looking to develop their knowledge, in a small and portable package.

Many advanced compacts now come with full manual control, giving photographer the chance to change every setting and tailor the camera to each shot that they take.

However, along with the advanced controls, they still retain their place in the compact market. It is common to find all of the usual auto settings that let users take a quick photo.

Ultimately, advanced compacts let you get creative with your shots. You’ll be getting better image quality and functionality without having to carry a much larger and more expensive camera.


The more advanced settings allow users to take full control

The small size is good for photographers on the go

Advanced compacts usually have superior optics and sensors


Although they are very small, they are often too large to fit in a pocket

They can be relatively expensive compared to normal compacts

The fixed lens cannot be changed to suit different situations

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