Fujifilm to release 9 megapixel consumer cameras

Fujifilm will soon offer two digital still cameras with 9-megapixel image sensors: the FinePix S9000 and the FinePix E900.

Fuji Photo Film Co. (Fujifilm) will soon offer two digital still cameras with 9-megapixel image sensors, the FinePix S9000 and the FinePix E900, it said Thursday.

Although buyers are paying less attention to the number of megapixels and looking more at other measures of overall image quality when buying a digital camera, there is still rivalry between manufacturers to produce the biggest sensors.

Fujifilm boasts that its two new cameras are the first consumer models to capture over 9 megapixels. Near rivals include Canon's EOS 20D, an SLR (single-lens reflex) model with an 8.2 megapixel sensor, Konica Minolta Photo Imaging's Dimage A200 (8 megapixels) or the Olympus' E-300 EVOLT (8.1 megapixels).

Market-watcher In-Stat expects 5-megapixel models to be the biggest sellers this year, according to a recent report.

For these new models, Fujifilm has incorporated a new CCD (charge-coupled device) image sensor and a new image processor, which reduce image noise and improve shutter speed, especially in low lighting conditions, it said.

The company calls the new image processor "Real Photo Technology," and is using it in two models already on the market: the FinePix F10 and the FinePix Z1.

The FinePix S9000 is an SLR model with a tilting LCD screen on the back. It comes with a 10.7x zoom lens. If the camera were a 35-millimeter film model, that would be the equivalent of a 28 mm to 300 mm zoom. It shoot photos in the RAW file format, and captures video at 30 frames per second in VGA resolution. The camera has two slots for xD-Picture memory cards.

The other camera, the FinePix E900, is a more compact point-and-shoot model. It has a 4x zoom lens, and extra lenses can be added. It too can shoot photos in RAW format.

The FinePix S9000 will cost around US$699.95 when it goes on sale in the US in early September, while the FinePix E900, which goes on sale the following month, will cost around US$499.95.

PC World Australia is waiting on details of availabilty locally.

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Peter Sayer

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