Fujifilm FinePix F80EXR review:

Fujifilm FinePix F80EXR

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Typical Price: £170.00
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3.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Extended-dynamic-range options; 10x optical zoom; you can use the autofocus and zoom when shooting 720p movies.

The Bad Odd pixel-level processing artefacts; resolution drop in EXR mode; EXR mode not fully integrated with normal shooting modes.

The Bottom Line Fujifilm's EXR technology looked fascinating when it first appeared, but it just doesn't seem to have moved on. The FinePix F80EXR boasts a mild resolution increase over the FinePix F70EXR and the purple fringing is gone, but the crossover between the normal and EXR modes is as confusing as ever

Visit manufacturer site for details.

7.5 Overall

The 12-megapixel Fujifilm FinePix F80EXR is a very interesting camera, and not just because of its EXR sensor. It also happens to be a well-made 10x compact superzoom with manual controls and a decent 720p movie mode. All of that makes the asking price of around £170 a rather pleasant surprise.

Sensor-tive soul
The F80EXR ticks all the boxes for a compact superzoom, with a 10x, 27-270mm wide-angle lens and a hi-def movie mode in which the autofocus and zoom can be used while you're shooting. There's an aperture-priority and manual mode for photographers who want to take more control, and Fujifilm exploits its photographic film brands to offer Provia, Velvia and Astia film-simulation modes, as well as black and white, and sepia.

There's some barrel distortion here, but the detail is good and the lens is sharp right to the edges of the frame. There's hardly any chromatic aberration in this image, either (click image to enlarge)

The key feature of this camera, though, is its EXR sensor. This is a special Fujifilm design that can pair up pixels to provide extra sensitivity and lower noise at high ISOs, or increased dynamic range in high-contrast lighting. The drawback is that, in these modes, you get images with half the resolution -- 6 megapixels instead of 12. That's still a decent-enough size for most purposes, though.

A new face-detection system can now recognise individuals rather than faces in general, and the pet-detection mode -- no, honestly, we haven't been smoking anything -- waits for your furry friend to turn towards the camera before taking a picture.

The F80EXR's backside hosts a 76mm (3-inch) LCD display

The F80EXR uses 'multi-frame' technology to allow a 'pro focus' mode with blurred backgrounds, although this does require you to have the right subjects at the right distances. A 'pro low light' mode is also available for high-quality shots in very poor light.

Duplication hellishness
But hold on a minute. You've got three different ways to shoot in low light. There's the standard ISO adjustment, the EXR high-sensitivity mode, and this pro-low-light mode too. Which are you supposed to use? Can't Fujifilm decide which one works best and ditch the rest?

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