Review: Fuji FinePix 2800 Zoom
Keller, DCRP Founder/Editor
Originally posted: Friday, December 7, 2001
Monday, May 13, 2002
a really hot camera this holiday season, and it's not the Nikon
Coolpix 5000. In fact, it costs about 60% less, and it has a bigger
zoom lens than the Coolpix. This camera is the Fuji
FinePix 2800 Zoom, the first low cost camera to truly break
the 3X optical zoom barrier. The FinePix 2800 is largely the same
as the FinePix 2600 (see
our review), except with a larger lens. Best of all, it only
on to find out if this camera should be under your tree this year!
they are so similar, this review is largely based on the FinePix
in the Box?
FinePix 2800 has a decent bundle. Here's what you'll find inside
2.0 (effective) Mpixel Fuji FinePix 2800 Zoom camera
AA-sized alkaline batteries (non-rechargeable)
featuring FinePix Viewer Software and drivers
page manual plus software manual (printed)
has skimped a bit on the FinePix 2800, perhaps to get the price
down. Where the FP2600 had rechargeable batteries included, the
FP2800 gives you alkalines which will quickly be drained and end
up in the landfill. My advice: buy some NiMH rechargeables -- it's
good for your wallet and the environment.
are better on the memory front: Fuji includes a 16MB SmartMedia
card, which is quite large for a 2 Megapixel camera. I won't mention
a certain other manufacturer that includes the same sized card with
a 5MP camera!
includes a lens cap and strap, to protect the "big" 6X
optical zoom lens.
those of you with Windows PCs, the FP2800 can also double as a "PC
camera", for teleconferencing on the Internet. This feature
isn't Mac compatible so I couldn't try it out.
camera does work correctly with Mac OS X version 10.1.1. The Image
Capture application starts right up. The camera is also WindowsXP
FinePixViewer software is just average, and useful only for transferring,
rotating, and resizing images. You'll want a more powerful photo
editing suite if you need more than those features.
aren't any lenses, filters, or flashes available for this point-and-shoot
manuals for Fuji cameras have always been better than average, and
that's still the case here.
FinePix 2800 Zoom is an all-plastic camera, and I'd rate it above
average in terms of build quality. The camera is fairly light, but
it's a bit too large for your pockets. The camera is easy to operate
with one hand or two.
official dimensions of the camera are 3.7 x 3.0 x 2.8 inches (W
x H x D) and it weighs 270 grams empty. Let's start our usual 360
degree tour of the FP2800 now.
begin, as always, with the front of the camera.
"big" attraction here is of course that 6X optical zoom
lens. This F2.8 lens has a focal range of 6 - 36 mm, which is equivalent
to 38 - 228 mm. The lens is not threaded.
north of the lens is the flash, which has a working range of 0.3
- 3.5 m at wide-angle, and 0.8-3.5 m at telephoto. (That's a bigger
range than on the FinePix 2600.)
the lens and flash (to the right a bit) is the microphone. Unlike
the FinePix 2600, this one can record sound (with movies, or attached
to still photos).
is no AF illuminator on this camera to help the camera focus in
low light situations.
onto the back of the camera.
keyword with the FinePix 2800 is simple. There aren't a lot of buttons
and everything is easy to navigate. The 1.8" LCD is good-sized,
but seems too dark to me, even after bumping up the brightness.
many "big zoom" cameras, including its cousin the FinePix
6900, the FP2800 uses an electronic viewfinder (EVF) rather than
a traditional optical viewfinder. What this means is that instead
of looking through glass (or plastic as the case may be), you're
looking at a little LCD screen. The good news is that you can see
what is normally seen on the LCD (such as settings, shots remaining).
The bad news is that it's not always easy to see, and the resolution
is nowhere near as good as an optical viewfinder. This is one of
those things you have to try yourself, rather than take my word
is no diopter correction on the EVF, for those of you with glasses.
the LCD and EVF is a button which switches between the two. It's
one or the other -- not both at the same time.
the right of the LCD are three buttons: Disp(lay) toggles the LCD
on and off. Menu invokes the menu, and doubles as the OK button
while inside them. The back button does just as it sounds in the
those is the four-way switch. This is used in menu operation, as
well as for controlling the zoom. The zoom mechanism is quiet and
on top of the camera you'll find the power switch, mode dial, and
shutter release button. While I usually like an LCD info display
to show current settings and shots remaining up here, the fact that
you're using the EVF or the LCD kind of makes it unnecessary.
choices on the mode dial are Record, Playback, and Movie. I'll have
more about each of these later in the review.
this side of the camera, there are two I/O ports as well as the
SmartMedia slot. The I/O ports are for USB (top) and DC in (bottom,
for optional AC adapter). There is no video output on this camera.
SmartMedia slot is one of those "yank it out yourself"
types (meaning non-spring-loaded). As of this writing, cards as
large as 128MB are supported.
the left of all these things is the speaker.
the other side, the only item of note is the hook for the wrist
here's the bottom of the camera, all opened up. If you open the
plastic cover, you will find the battery compartment (which holds
four AA batteries versus two on the FinePix 2600) as well as the
SmartMedia slot. The door that covers these seems like it could
bust off if too much force is applied, so be careful.
other item on the bottom is the tripod mount, which is made of plastic.
the Fuji FinePix 2800 Zoom
camera takes about three seconds to extend the lens and "warm
up" before you can start taking photos. The LCD is off by default
and there is no way to change that, so you have to hit Disp overtime
you want to turn it on. Obviously, the EVF will be on.
you depress the shutter release button halfway, the camera quickly
locks focus in under a second. When you press it fully, the photo
is taken after a noticeable lag of about half a second. Shot-to-shot
speed is very good -- you'll wait about two seconds before you can
take another photo, even at the highest quality setting.
in record mode
are many choices available for resolution and quality on the FP2800,
as this table explains:
photos on 16MB card (included)
photos on 64MB card (for reference)
(1600 x 1200)
(1280 x 960)
(640 x 480)
is no TIFF or RAW mode on the FinePix 2800, which isn't surprising
considering its cost.
menu system on the FinePix 2800 is all new, and pretty colorful
too. There are little tabs with different options, each with it's
own color. There is a manual mode, which essentially unlocks some
menu items. Strangely, manual mode locks out one useful option.
Anyhow, here are the menu choices:
(Auto, redeye reduction, forced flash, no flash, slow synchro)
(on/off) - 10 seconds - only in auto mode (!)
caption (on/off) - only in auto mode
compensation (-1.5EV to +1.5EV in 0.3EV increments) - only
in manual mode
balance (auto, sunlight, shade, fluorescent x3, incandescent)
- only in manual mode
Setup (LCD brightness, auto/manual mode, quality, continuous shooting)
few additional details on two items there. The voice caption feature
lets you add a 30 second sound clip (WAV format) to each image after
it is taken.
shooting mode will take up to 4 images at a rate of 2 frames per
second. The FinePix 2600 did not have this feature.
take a look at our photo tests now.
FinePix did quite well at our macro test. The subject is sharp and
the color is accurate. The camera is locked at wide-angle while
in macro mode. The focal range is 10 - 80 cm.
that the FinePix 2800 doesn't have any manual controls, it did a
decent job at the night shot test. You can tell what things are,
but obviously if you could do a multi-second exposure here, it would
look a lot better. There really isn't any noise to speak of, either.
quality on the FinePix was very good. Keeping with Fuji tradition,
the colors are accurate. I didn't notice any chromatic aberrations
(purple fringing) either. Take a look at the photo
gallery and decide for yourself.
FinePix 2800Z can record movies as long as 60 seconds, at 320 x
240 and 10 frames per second. Sound is recorded as well.
this to the FinePix 2600 which recorded no sound, and could only
record for 20 seconds.
in movie mode, the camera is locked at wide-angle, and only the
digital zoom can be used.
camera can hold about 94 seconds of total video on the included
a relatively interesting sample movie:
to play movie (AVI format, 1.2MB)
FinePix 2800's playback mode has all the basic features that you'd
expect. That includes thumbnail mode, DPOF print marking, and zoom
and scroll. One basic feature that I was surprised not to see is
image protection so you don't accidentally delete important photos.
Another feature that I would've liked is the ability to rotate photos
zoom and scroll feature, as I call it, lets you zoom in as much
as 5X into your photo, and then scroll around in it.
between photos takes just under two seconds. When you want to delete
photos, you can do one at a time, or all. There is no way to delete
a selected group of images.
addition, there isn't any information about your photos, other than
their number and time they were taken.
Does it Compare?
those looking for a lot of zoom for a little money, the FinePix
2800 Zoom is an excellent choice. It offers a 6X optical zoom, very
good photo quality, and point-and-shoot ease of use. You won't find
any manual controls or support for add-on lenses, but then again,
most $399 cameras don't offer that. The only real downsides (for
me) are the electronic viewfinder and LCD (I don't like EVF's as
a rule, and the LCD is dark) and the lack of rechargeable batteries.
If you like the FinePix 2800 but think 3X zoom is enough, also check
out the FinePix
2600 Zoom for $100 less. Either way, you can't go wrong.
good photo quality
value - 6X optical zoom for under $400
system intuitive, easy to use
be used for videoconferencing - though Windows only
I didn't care for:
Viewfinder - I don't like them in general
a little dark
Playback mode could have more features
bit of shutter lag
"big zoom" cameras include the Canon
PowerShot Pro90, Casio
FinePix 6900 Zoom, Minolta DiMAGE 5
C-700UZ and C-2100UZ,
and the Sony
always, I recommend a trip to your local camera store to try out
the FinePix 2800Z and its competitors before you buy!
how does the photo quality stand up? Check out the sample photos
in our photo gallery!
a second opinion?
sure to read Steves
Digicams review of the FinePix 2800 Zoom.
welcomes your comments or questions. Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Due to my limited resources, please do not e-mail me asking for
a personal recommendation.