Thursday, April 12, 2012

F770EXR Review – Part 2 – Random shots and that heat sensitivity again …

I carried the F770EXR with me earlier today when I popped out to grab a couple of things and here are some early results. These are all JPEGs, as I was not motivated to use the binary edit trick to make them visible in Lightroom 4 or ACR7.

I processed a few of them on my TN panel, so they are darker than normal. That is a lesson you must learn … get a good monitor and calibrate … then make sure that you don’t use your crappy monitor for processing :-)

Second issue with these is that some are oversharpened. That’s from me not being used to processing JPEGs, which already have sharpening built in. I did these in Lightroom, which is more of a blunt instrument than CS6, where I always do output sharpening on a layer and get it just right for the image. Oh well … this is just the beginning … no worries.

The cars as I walk up to it. Nick had the day off, so his is there two. Note the clarity on the sides and in the corners. This is a full wide shot and it appears to be sharp edge to edge. Go Fuji …

F770EXR  100iso  f/3.5  1/480 

This next shot is from around 8 to 10 feet away, isolating a single branch of my Lilac tree at 500mm in macro mode. This cam will be fabulous for flowers because of the amazing bokeh it can generate at full zoom. Note that the sun was under a cloud.

F770EXR  100iso  f/5.3  1/120 

A moment later, the sun came out and totally changed the light. Always shoot flowers under cloudy skies if you can. The light is much softer and more flattering.

F770exr  100iso  f/5.3  1/320

Off to Walmart for a few minutes, and the clouds are rolling in. We got some rain today …

F770exr  100iso  f/7.1  1/600

And I arrive …

f770exr  100iso  f/7.1  1/450

I find this camera to have really good tone and color. But I am touching these in Lightroom as well. I will try to show straight out of cam (SOOC) results now and again at original sizes. But I am always about what can be done with the camera, not what the camera does without any help. That is generally pointless in my opinion (but YMMV of course.)

Back home, and under clouds again. And it’s garbage day :-)

f770exr  100iso  f/5.3  1/140

Here’s the first full-sized image that I will include for your enjoyment. Let the criticizing begin!

f770exr  100iso  f/5.3  1/250

And here is how I would process that specific shot.

The tulips are coming along.

f770exr  100iso  f/5.3  1/75

Here’s a quick 3200iso test … remember that this is in JPEG.

f770exr  3200iso  f/5.2  1/9

Note that the above is shot in pretty poor light, needing 1/9s to get a decent exposure. So the following crop should impress you for 3200ISO on a tiny 1/2” sensor at 1/9s …

And finally … we get to the heat sensitivity issue. Will the F770EXR have a better response than the F550EXR? Let’s find out.

These two shots are SOOC by the way, but I did size them down as there is no value to pixel peeping these shots.

f770exr  1250iso  f/3.5  1/15

f770exr  400iso  f/3.5  1/25  -2ev

So the answer is no. The F770exr does not improve on the F550exr where heat sensitivity is concerned. Oh well … it was a long shot anyway.

And very, very late at night, I saw Nick prowling the kitchen for something to eat … so I grabbed a few shots at 500mm, which is incredibly tricky in this low light with him moving around. I was pretty pleased to get one almost usable shot out of the few I tried.

The lighting is abysmal so I rendered it in black and white.

f770exr  1600iso  f/5.3  1/60


So far, I am impressed. The JPEG engine is sharp and has great tone and color. There is a lot of detail in the images with minimal smearing. Pixel peeping is still not a joy as it would be on an APS-C sensor, but this sensor is tiny, so get over it.

I find the output to easily rival the crop of images I have been seeing from the X10 lately, but that may just be who is posting and not what the camera can actually do. Still, I am surprised that more people did not jump on this camera. I like it quite a bit so far.

A couple of further impressions:

  • The door for the battery and SD card is very hard to open. Much more so than on any previous body.
  • The SD card is, against all odds, actually harder to get out of the camera than it was on the F300 and F550. What a PITA.
  • In good light, the lens is a joy to use at the long end. Stabilization seems to work well enough to handle 500mm. But you have to have steady hands because that is massive magnification if you are trying to shoot close in objects.
  • The flash is really cool … looking something from outer space when it deploys. And using an actual button instead of your finger nail to deploy the flash is a really nice touch. Fuji designers have really nailed the ergonomics on these bodies. Much more pleasant in the hands than the X10 in my opinion.