Fujifilm FinePix A101 Review
Features & Controls
The FinePix A101 has a 1.6-inch color LCD but no monochrome data LCD, any setting changes
made must be accomplished on the color LCD. A 4x zoom playback option lets you scroll
around the magnified picture. If used as the viewfinder the refresh rate is near
real time. The optical viewfinder is large but has a fairly narrow viewing angle. There is
no diopter adjustment. The LED indicates autofocus condition or when processing an
Controls on the top: The POWER switch turns the camera on and off and also opens and closes the lens protector. Around the shutter release is the Mode Dial with positions for Record, Play and Movie.
Controls on the back: The DISP button turns on the LCD display or cycles through the
available display options in record modes. In Play mode it toggles you from full screen
to thumbnail index mode. The MENU/OK button brings up the menu overlays, the 4-way switch
is for navigating and selections are confirmed by pressing the MENU/OK button a second
time. The BACK button lets you leave menu selections without making a choice.
On the front of the camera is the focus control switch, the up position
is normal mode and when down enables the macro closeup mode.
The FinePix A101 has a high-speed USB port for rapid downloading of image data to
the host computer. There is also a DC INput port for the optional Ac power adapter.
There is NO video out so it cannot be hooked up to a TV set.
Image data is stored on 3.3v SmartMedia cards which are inserted and removed from the battery compartment on the bottom. Fuji includes a 8MB SmartMedia card and the FinePix A101 can use any size card up to 128MB.
The camera is powered by two AA size batteries, included are a set of alkalines but I
strongly recommend you to buy a set (or two) of rechargeable NiMH type batteries and a
charger. The camera can be run from an optional AC power adapter.
Steve's ConclusionThe FinePix A101 is a good "entry level" one-megapixel digital camera for those looking for a simple and easy to operate camera that delivers good image quality. It doesn't have any kinds of advanced controls other than being able to change the white balance settings or vary the exposure compensation. The lens is fixed (non-zoom) and the focus is also fixed which means that there are no delays due to auto focusing.
It's small enough to slip in your pants pocket or a purse and can be easily carried all day in your hand. It's designed as a "point and shoot" camera and you only need to turn it on and press the shutter button to capture a picture. The color LCD is good and can be used in all but direct sunlight conditions. When playing images back you can magnify them up to 4x on the 1.6-inch screen so it makes it easy to check for focus, color and composition. The battery life is average and depends on how often you use the color LCD for review and preview.
Under all but the harshest lighting conditions the camera delivers good image quality with well saturated and properly exposed colors. The flash is adequate for normal situations, just don't expect it to light up subjects beyond eight or nine feet. One "quirk" I noticed is that indoor flash pictures appear to be over-exposed on the color LCD when previewed but they look just fine on the computer screen later. The 1280 x 960-pixel images will print good pictures up to 5x7 inch size. They're excellent for email or web pages. If you're looking for a good starter digital camera or a stocking stuffer for a budding digi-photographer this is a good choice that won't break the bank.
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