Home / Cameras / Camera / Fujifilm FinePix S100FS / Fujifilm FinePix S100FS

Fujifilm FinePix S100FS - Fujifilm FinePix S100FS

By Cliff Smith



  • Recommended by TR
Fujifilm FinePix S100FS


Our Score:


The basic design concept of the S100FS is still the same; it is a large SLR-style camera with a manually-operated zoom lens, a tilting monitor screen and an electronic viewfinder. Physically it is somewhat larger than the S9600, measuring 133.4 X 93.6 X 150.4mm. It's also quite a lot heavier, weighing a substantial 918g minus battery. In terms of size and weight it definitely into digital SLR territory. By comparison the Canon EOS 400D measures 126.5 x 94.2 x 65mm and weighs 510g body only. Body construction is polycarbonate plastic over a metal frame, the same as most consumer DSLRs, and build quality is very good. The extra weight and the large rubberised grip give the camera a pleasant solidity and stability, useful when shooting at lower shutter speeds. The control layout is similar to the S9600, albeit with more buttons, but it is fairly straightforward and easy to operate.

A lot of the extra weight comes from the new lens, which is significantly larger than that on the S9600, both in terms of physical size and focal length. It has a zoom range equivalent to 28 - 400mm and a maximum aperture of f/2.8 - f/5.3, specifications which compare well with super-zoom lenses available for most digital SLRs. That massive zoom range makes it a good all-rounder, covering everything from wide-angle landscapes to long telephoto.

The manual zoom action is nice and smooth, and far more pleasant to use than the powered zooms found on most other cameras, but I'm not so keen on the manual focus system. It uses an electrically-linked "fly-by-wire" system, with a focusing ring on the barrel of the lens. I found it to be unresponsive, and the viewfinder magnification which activates automatically in manual focus mode is very blocky and not sharp enough for accurate focusing.

One welcome additional feature notably absent from the S9600 is optical image stabilisation. This is pretty much an essential item on super-zoom cameras these days, and although Fujifilm was a late adopter it is now fitting IS to most of its longer lens models. The system works well, allowing sharp hand-held shots at full zoom at shutter speeds as low as 1/60th of a second, an advantage of just under 2.5 stops. This compares well with other high-end super-zoom cameras, such as the Canon S5 IS or Panasonic FZ18.

The most significant improvement is the camera's sensor. The S9600 had a 9.0-megapixel SuperCCD HR sensor of the larger 1/1.6-inch size, measuring approximately 7.7 x 5.8mm, physically larger than the sensors in most compact cameras. The S100FS goes even further, featuring an 11.1-megapixel SuperCCD HR which is even larger still. It is of the larger 2/3-inch type, measuring approximately 8.8 x 6.6mm. Physical sensor size is important, because a larger sensor means larger photocells with greater sensitivity to light, which in theory means greater colour depth and less image noise. By comparison, the sensors in most high-spec compacts measure approximately 7.2 x 5.3mm, while the APS-C sensors in most digital SLRs measure 23.7 x 15.7mm. Even the Olympus Four-Thirds sensor measures 18 x 13.5mm.


July 8, 2008, 11:44 pm

I purchased the S100fs in early May, 2008. To say I am impressed is an understatement. If you would like to see - straight out of the camera images, have a look at : http://www.pixplanet.biz/Po...

Ian Porter

October 6, 2008, 4:31 am

Very nice pictures Dave, they certainly look very impressive to me and are much better than Cliffs for evaluation. I really don't know why Cliff uses those model cars at all. I agree with Cliff though that this camera seems overpriced, I couldn't bring myself to pay over 𧷸 for it when I could buy a DSLR. I'll keep waiting for something radical to happen before giving up on my Fuji S7000 and Canon A560. Cheers, Ian

Shapour Va

October 22, 2008, 4:16 pm

I usually check all sites before purchasing in order not to be sorry after purchasing!By reading almost more than ten reviews I came to conclusion that this camera is realy a sophesticated great job of technology especially by implementing as the Fujifilm's Super CCD 's

In order to be more acquaited with the photos taken with this camera please have look at the galery of http://www.pbase.com/camera....

I was really satisfied, what about you?

Shapour Vaezi Tehran Iran

Ian Dalgliesh

October 31, 2008, 4:33 am

I've just purchased an S100fs from Fuji's own website.It's Refurbished and on sale at 𧷷.99,less 10%,via myfuji,of which I an a member(membership free).I'll keep you posted as to how the pics turn out.

Tom Paul

October 31, 2008, 4:33 pm

Agree with Cliff - a brilliant camera but a touch expensive. BUT, Ian Dalgliesh is spot on - I too have just bought a "refurbished" one from Fuji UK" for under 𧷚 and at this price it makes much more sense. Simply cannot tell it from new, it's absolutely perfect and unmarked, and suspect it might be Fuji moving on stock while trying to avoid upsetting its retailers. This was at 10% off (use code P24OCTOBER) which expires 2nd November so you'll have to be quick!

Tim Mason

December 1, 2008, 8:24 pm

I actually bought a Sony a350 and was so dissapointed with the images I was getting, I took it back to the (indipendant) camera shop. Even with the Zeiss lense, it wasn't much better. The assistant suggested the s100fs and I have found it to be excellent. The only niggle is the maximum 'bulb' exposure of 30 seconds which is a bit limiting for night / movement photographs.

Michael Wildeman

January 3, 2009, 6:31 pm

can you explain how you got the 10% discount from Fuji guys? I have joined myfuji and can find no sort of discount scheme... cheers


Ian Dalgliesh

April 3, 2009, 1:16 am

Update:2/4/09:Look up homepage of www.fujifilm.co.uk.,there see photos on front page.The golden river with two swans is mine,taken with S100fs.


September 14, 2009, 11:00 pm

I currently have a lumix fz 28 and am already looking for an upgrade. I do mountain climbing and love landscape and wildlife photography. The thing is that I don't find myself ready (or wealthy enough) to upgrade to a dslr with a such a great zoom. The reason for the upgrade is that even though fz 28 is a great camera and has received great scores on the net, it somehow does not really satisfy me, especially when it comes to night photography.

I can get a Fujifilm FinePix S100FS for about 480$ here in Iran And could also get the new lumix fz38 for the same price (panasonic cameras cost a lot over here, don't know why). Which one do you guys think (especially those who have had this camera) would serve me better? would you call switching from fz 28 to s100 even an upgrade in image quality? note that I can get rid of my fz 28 for a good price (around 350$).

I would appreciate your help.


May 31, 2012, 9:16 pm

Still considered a great bridge camera? looking to buy a used one for £150 as this is my budget and new bridges for this price dont seem to come close.

comments powered by Disqus