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    Fuji S602 Zoom Digital Camera Review
    Author: Daniel Topler
    Date Posted: May 5th, 2003
    SLRating: SLRating: 9.5/10
    Bottom Line: If you're looking for a camera that is powerful and has a plethora of features, but doesn't break the bank, look no further; The S602 Zoom is your answer. How was the quality and did it meet our expectations? Read on to find out in our official review....

    Find the lowest price for this product
    Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6
    >> Discuss This Article


    Features

    The S602 Zoom uses a 3rd generation Super CCD, which provides an effective 3.1 megapixels of resolution.

    The Super CCD's honeycomb arrangement of pixels allows the camera to capture 3.1 megapixels in a shot, but can also capture a 6 mexapixel shot when interpolating the image. While this is confusing, the basic idea is that you can get the camera to produce a 3.1 MP effective image, but you can also make the image be recorded as a 6 MP image, making it 2832x2128.

    The camera has a wide selection of ISO settings, and can be amplified to 200, 400, 800, and 1600 ISO, but when 800 and 1600 ISO is selected, the image is reduced to 1280x960 pixels, making it a 1 MP shot.

    The S602 Zoom provides four different resolutions, which are as follows:

    6 MP

    2832x2128

    3 MP

    2048x1536

    1 MP

    1280x960

    VGA

    640x480

    Most people should end up using the 3 MP resolution. It provides excellent quality, and doesn't take up too much space on the memory card. The VGA mode is fairly useless, since it can't do much more then allow a person to e-mail a picture.

    There are various modes for JPEG compression on the camera. For 3 MP and 1 MP, you can select from Fine and Normal. For 6 MP, there's high, fine, normal, or basic, and for VGA, there's just Normal. When taking a 3 MP shot on Fine mode, each image is about 1.3 MB in size. When taking a 3 MP using Normal mode, each image is about 600 KB in size.

    However, when taking pictures with 6 MP's in Fine mode, it uses 2.4 MB, and on High mode (.TIFF uncompressed), it uses a whopping 18 MB of your memory card.

    I found that the best selection was 3 MP on Fine mode. It lets you take just 12 pictures using the included 16MB SmartMedia card, but if you buy a bigger card, it provides you with high-quality shots while still letting you use the camera for a long period of time without having to delete or upload pictures.

    The camera also provides many other features, such as Continuous Shot Mode. Here, you can choose between four different CSM's, Top 5-frame continuous shooting, Auto Bracketing, Final 5-frame continuous shooting, and Long Period Continuous Shooting 1280x960 pixel mode. Below is a small chart of each mode in detail:

    Top 5-Frame Continuous Shooting

    Takes five shots with intervals of as little as .2 seconds

    Auto Bracketing

    Takes three shots, one underexposed, one overexposed, and the other is by the camera's meter

    Final 5-Frame Continuous Shooting

    Takes 25 shots, but saves the last five only

    Long-period Continuous Shooting

    Takes 40 pictures at 1 MP resolution

     

    You can also set the self-timer at 2 or 10 seconds, set White Balance (Auto, Sun, Shade, Daylight, Warm White, Cool White, and Shooting in incandescent light), ISO sensitivity (160, 200, 400, 800, 1600), and Photometry (Multi, Spot, or average).

    The camera also features two Macro settings, Macro, and Super Macro. In case you aren't sure, Macro is a setting to allow you to take close-up shots.

    The Macro setting lets you take shots from 10cm to 80cm away, and the Super Macro mode lets you take images from 1cm to 20cm away.

    Both settings are extremely powerful and useful, and results can be seen on the Test Images page.

    In playback mode, you can delete pictures, format the entire card, select pictures to be printed (DPOF), and add voice memos, which lets you add up to 30 seconds of noise for each picture so you can be reminded, for example, where and when you took that picture. You can also look at the picture's settings, such as ISO, image size, and aperture. You can also zoom into the picture. When taking shots at 6 MP, you can zoom up to 18x into the picture on the camera.

    You can also connect the camera to the TV via the AV Out port. If you purchased the camera in North America and Japan, it is NTSC, and in Europe it is PAL.

    Battery Life

    Battery life on the camera was like most other digital cameras; horrible. I got probably about 15 minutes of use off of 4 AA batteries, which is really unacceptable. If you do pick up this camera, I strongly advise getting the rechargeable lithium battery for the camera, or at least pick up some rechargeable AA batteries. Otherwise, you'll find that the camera is a complete pain to use, because it just sucks up batteries.

    Displays

    The S602 Zoom features two different displays, the 1.8" LCD screen, or the EVF. Both are excellent, and are useful in various situations. First off, in case you aren't quite sure what it is, the EVF is the viewfinder on the camera, but instead of just being a clear screen, it's actually electronic, much like a mini LCD screen. This means you can do things like view already taken photos and change settings right on the viewfinder.

    The traditional digital camera display is the LCD screen, and the one on the S602 Zoom is great. It's crisp, large, and demonstrates image quality exceptionally. It does take up more battery life then the EVF, however, so I ended up using the viewfinder more then the LCD screen. But if you have rechargeable batteries, the LCD screen is a good bet.

    Software

    Fuji bundles quite a bit of software on one CD that comes with the S602 Zoom. Here's a run-through of each thing:

    Name

    Description

       

    USB Mass Storage Driver

    Camera drivers. They are not needed for Windows XP.

    FinePix Viewer 3.0

    A program to view pictures that are on the camera in a easy layout.

    ArcSoft Video Impressions 1.6

     

    Adobe PhotoDeluxe Home 4.0

    Has features for photo-editing in a easy-to-use interface

    Adobe ActiveShare

     

    I didn't really find it important to use any of the software included unless you need to do photo editing. Otherwise, it's not really important to install any of the software. But, the software is good, and is great for newbie's.



    Test Images Go the the next page
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    1. Introduction
    2. Design
    3. Features
    4. Test Images
    5. Conclusions Pros/Cons
    6. Gallery

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