Fujifilm's debuts new camera for enthusiasts

Fuji Photo Film Co. is about to put on sale its latest professional-looking digital still camera. The product will hit the market later this month and will please photography lovers who care not only about the image quality but also the shooting quality, providing a high degree of light sensitivity and fast shutter speed.

The FinePix S602 is equipped with a 3-megapixel-class CCD (charge-coupled device) equipped with Fuji Film's Super Honeycom system, which allows recorded images to have a quality equivalent to a 6-megapixel pickup, according to a Fuji Film statement.

A CCD chip has a layer of light-sensitive pixels, which converts light coming through the lens into electric signals. Usually, each of these pixels is square in shape and arranged like a checkerboard, providing an image of around 2,000 by 1,500 pixels in the case of a normal 3-megapixel CCD.

By making the pixel shape an octagon and arranging it in zigzag lines, much like the shape of a honeycomb, the Tokyo company enabled the Super Honeycom CCD to collect more light. This means an image can be recorded under a dimmer lighting condition and the new camera offers an equivalent of ISO 1600 light sensitivity, the statement said.

The FinePix S602 is equipped with two autofocus sensors, which will allow for a fast shooting speed of up to 5 frames per second and shutter speed of up to one-ten thousandth of a second in manual mode.

The product has a fixed 6X optical zoom lens, a 1.8-inch color TFT (thin film transistor) LCD (liquid crystal display) monitor, takes a Smart Media card and a Microdrive and allows for video recording at VGA (Video Graphics Array) quality and 30 frames per second. It measures 121 millimeters by 81.5 millimeters by 97 millimeters and weighs 500 grams.

Its power source, four AAA batteries, provides enough energy to record up to 280 still images on a Smart Media card or 240 on a Microdrive, the statement said.

Fujit Film will roll out the product on April 22 at ¥125,000 (US$950) in Japan. The company plans to release the product worldwide in June.

Desk edit by: Martyn Williams

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