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FujiFilm Finepix S5700 / S700 Bridge Camera First Impressions And Video Review

10x Optical Zoom, 7.1 Megapixels, Point & Shoot Functionality, With Most of The Control Of A D-SLR, All For Just Over A Ton!



Fujifilm S5700 / S700If you've read my Budget Camera Search, you'll know I've been on the look out for a new Digital Camera that can also do Video. After researching on the net I decided on the Fujifilm Finepix S5700 (S700 in the States). I've had it a day or so, so lets look at my first impressions.

First, a little story. I bought the Fuji off Amazon before Christmas, along with the Fuji Case and some rechargeable batteries. Expected delivery was about half way through January. Anyway, I checked the Amazon site last week only to find not only had the camera gone down a couple of quid, not only were they now giving away a free case, but if I used express delivery I could get it the next day! So I cancelled the original order, and ordered it again, minus the Fuji case.

So I stayed in all morning the next day, doing housework(!) waiting for the delivery. Twelve o'clock came and went, and as I've got a broken arm at the moment I needed a lift to the shops to get some cigarettes, so my daughter gave me a lift to the co-op. We were gone about 10 minutes. When we came back one of the dreaded red cards was on the mat. I'd missed the bloody Post-Man! I was well $%@#ed off, I had a hospital appointment the next day and thought I wouldn't be able to go and pick up the parcel from the sorting office.

Why all the preamble? To give you an idea of how excited I was when I did manage to get to the Sorting Office at 730am the next day and pick up my camera. I was trying to get into the box in the hospital waiting rooms, but strangely enough the fracture clinic was ultra efficient that morning, so I had to wait until I got home to have a good look at my new Digital Camera.

Taking the Fujifilm Finepix S5700 out of the box it amazes with how small it is. Digital Cameras come in all shapes and sizes, but the Fuji could be just about perfect. Looking at the pictures it resembles a D-SLR, but it really is small. Ok it's not a cigarette box size, but its small and light enough to hold and operate in one hand. The case is plastic but feels sturdy enough. The battery and SD card slots are a bit flimsy, but what do you expect for just over £100?

The S5700 is a Bridge Camera, that is it has the functionality of a Point and Shoot Digital, but with most of the extra control of a Digital SLR. So you can set it to Auto mode and click away without having to worry about anything, or choose any of several other modes which vary from just image stabilisation to full manual mode.

So why did I go for the S5700? Well, its got a great Zoom - 10x Optical, can take video in vga or qvga AVI-Motion Jpeg, runs off 4 AA batteries, and has an eye-piece viewfinder as well as a big view-screen on the back.

Without further ado, lets take a look at a short video I did to give you a closer look at the S5700.

Even after only a day I'm really impressed with this camera. At first I was a little intimidated by all the extra functions and just thought most of the time I'd be using it in Auto mode, but I forced myself to sit down at the Dinning Room table with the Camera and the excellent manual. I would recommend anyone who buys this (or any other gadget) to just work through the instructions, trying out each function for real as you go along. It took a couple of hours, but now I feel like I really know what the camera is capable of and can start to experiment.

So what is the Fuji S5700 capable of? We've already talked about the massive 10x Optical zoom, which is really handy but needs a steady hand or you'll end up with blurry shots unless you use the image stabilisation mode. Auto mode works just fine, and I'm just getting to grips with the other modes, but I've had a play with shutter priority to make some nice blurred shots!

I've been playing around with using the S5700 in low light, and in those conditions an Auto Filter Assist light comes on so you can still lock on and helps you to see the object, it all works very competently. At the moment all I can really add is that the camera has done everything I wanted it to and I just want to get out and take more pics!

I should add that I'm using a 1gb sd card, which is good for about 550 photo's (or frames) at the 7 megapixel normal mode, which the manual says is good for printing up to A4 size. You can choose a fine setting which halves the picture capacity, but I haven't had a chance to test the difference in quality and whether it's worth using it for my type of amateur pictures.

Anyway, I'm off to the Fuji Forum to pick up some hints and tips, and look at some other owners pics to give me inspiration. Excellent camera.

Buy a Fuji FinePix S5700 From Amazon.co.uk - Free Delivery

Example Pics, Click To Enlarge (Will open a new tab / window)
There's some more examples in this flickr album

 

Comments / Questions:

Bought one today in Jessops having decided to move on from budget/no name Digi-Cams. Price paid was £85, (If I had ordered on line for pick up in store price was 89.99 in store was £99.99 but with a little bit of haggling I got it cheap!)

I even got a free 32MB SD card, (Replaced with a 1GB Ultra II that I had indoors).

My overall impression is WOW! Yes you can use it as a point and click but a little time spent reading the manual and experimenting pays dividends.

Image quality is superb, far better than my £39.99 Lumicron LDC-618z3 (6.3 MP, 3x Digital zoom, £39.99 in Feb 07)

If you can find one, give it a try!

Thanks for the article by the way, it helped me to decide! Mick.

Cheers!

I BOUGHT THE S5000 3 1/2 YEARS AGO & AM STILL IMPRESSED BY IT! I GOT MINE FROM STATES FROM INTERNET VIA EBAY, FOR £150, £70 CHEAPER THAN UK!  I ALSO INVESTED IN A WIDE & A LONG DISTANCE LENSE'S FROM A LINK SITE VIA EBAY. GOT BOTH LENSES FOR £70 FROM OPTIKA, WITH NO PROBLEMS. David.

Fujis are great!

i have lost my instructions for my camera could u please send a copy to my email or something or tell me where i could find them on the internet :)
thankszz. Charis.

http://www.fujifilm.co.uk/consumer/digital/digital-cameras/d-slr-long-zoom/finepix-s5700/Support

I also bought this camera and it works just fine. Absolute bargain at £99 (Argos). I have no complaints with it at all, apart from the fact that it doesn't come with a free case. Buy it, you will not be disappointed, especially at the price is is now. (May 08). Eddy.

Excellent!

Not surprised you like it. I bought a s5500 about 2 years ago because I wanted a digital similar to an SLR. I couldn't afford the full blown digital job. I am still amazed at the S5500's abilities and capabilities. Can't see why people want to buy these matchbox jobs. It's light, easy to use, reliable and above all DELIVERS! If they've improved it, it must be one heck of a camera.
Congrats on your purchase, you won't get tired of using it. M.

Too right - Fujifilm have made a superb piece of kit. After almost 6 months of use I've only got two niggles - the purple fringing that appears on the edge of high contrast objects - and if it had the ability to autobracket more that plus or minus 1 ev, it would be perfect.

I just bought this camera 90% based on your review, and I have to say I LOVE LOVE LOVE this camera. Everything is just so easy to use and if you have owned a digital camera previously, it takes very little time to come to grips with all the different features.
I'm so in love I won't leave home without my S5700.
Thanks for such a great and accurate review. Pip.

Thanks for the comments, glad you love the camera.
Please send some pics and we'll put them up on the website or a shared flickr album.
Or how about writing your own review of the camera after you've been using it for a while?

I've got to choose between this camera and the KODAK Easyshare ZD710. Your opinion is welcome ! Moez.

The zd710 looks very nice, similar to my S5700. Send us a review if you get it.

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