Fujifilm FinePix A850 Digital Camera
I bought my Fujifilm FinePix A850, 8 mega pixel, digital camera back in 2009 from Tesco at a bargain price of just £49.95. My reason for this purchase was as simple as I wanted a digital camera with more mega pixels than my previous Kodak Easy Share 3 mega pixel camera and this one was a reasonable price.
== The Fujifilm FinePix A850 ==
Firstly, I am not very 'tech minded' in the sense of knowing the detailed specs of things so this review will be from a 'me' point of view and detail the parts of the camera that I do understand and made regular use of before I unfortunately managed to break this camera.
The Fujifilm FinePix A850 which I owned was a dark greeny/grey in colour which was described on the box as 'Gun Metal', it wasn't the nicest of colours but at the same time it did look quite good. It is also available in silver and black. Out of the three colours I would say that the silver looks the best.
The front of the camera is ok looks wise, for me it was a little too square looking and this made it look rather chunky. The lens takes up around half of the front of the camera. There is flash light located at the top of the camera next to the lens and underneath the lens in the bottom right corner there is a small round light which blinks orange when you use the self timer.
The reverse of the camera is taken up mainly by the large viewing screen and to the right of the screen are a number of buttons which are used for navigating around the menus and changing settings. There is also a zoom button which is really easy to use and can be used when both taking or viewing photographs.
The top of the camera has a power button and the button you press to take a photo and the bottom of the camera has the battery compartment with the memory card slot and some information about where the camera was made.
The camera came with 2 non rechargeable AA batteries which lasted all of 5 minutes, a full written instruction booklet as well as a CD for use in the PC, I have not used this though as I have a net book laptop with no CD drive. A USB cable for transferring files was also included.
== Taking a Photo ==
Ok, obviously the main use of a camera is for taking a photo, so lets take one.
Firstly you need to turn the camera on using the power button on the top. The first time you turn the camera on, you will be automatically prompted to set the date and time once this is done you are ready to take your first photo. Should the clocks change or you haven't used the camera for a long time you can manually adjust the date and time in the menu settings.
I bought this camera literally only a couple of hours before a night out with friends, so I was really pleased with how quick and easy it was to set up and start using. Once the date and time settings are done the camera really is as simple as 'point and click' as the rest of the settings will be set to Auto until you modify them yourself.
It's been a while since my first photo with this camera, however knowing me it probably would have been of Izzie my dog and then closely followed by the photos of the night out a few hours later. While I had this camera I know I took many photos of Izzie and one thing I did notice was in most of the photos her eyes looked kind of like they were glowing a funny greenish colour or failing that they had the typical 'red eye' effect from the flash. At the time that I bought this camera Izzie was only a puppy and had a complete lack of ability to stay still (she still does now!) but this was a good test for the movement and blurriness. The results of Izzie's movements were varied... if I took photos of her in a decent light, say in the park, the pictures would come out reasonably clear with only a slight blur around her wagging tail, however, if I took pictures of her running around the house in artificial light they seemed to blur more often than not and also the colours often seemed more vivid than they actually were in real life, Izzie is a black and tan spaniel and would sometimes end up looking like a black dog with Wotsits for eyebrows!
I also enjoy taking photos of scenery especially in Sutton Park or when I have been away on holiday. Most of the time I have been pleased with the quality of these photos, however I do find that if the battery power is starting to run low then the quality of the photos can be quite badly affected. I think this is the bad point of having AA batteries rather than a lithium battery for this camera.
There is a self timer option on the camera which is easily selected from the menu screen with the buttons on the reverse. I didn't really use this option much as I could never find somewhere level to stand the camera or if I could I was worried someone might grab it and run off it we were in a public area. For those of you with a tripod there is a little hole on the bottom of the camera to fit it to one. Using self timer you have the option of 3, 5, or 10 seconds before the photo is taken. I think 10 seconds is probably the best amount of time as 3 and 5 seconds I think you would have to really rush to get into position! Once set, you simply need to press the button for taking photos, this will activate the countdown which is shown by an orange blinking light in the bottom right corner of the camera, after the selected amount of seconds the light will blink faster and the photo will be taken. The camera will then return to its normal settings.
The Fujifilm FinePix A850 is a 8 mega pixel digital camera, however the number of mega pixels can be adjusted in the menu area and taken down to as low as just 1 mega pixel. The zoom on the camera is good, but not brilliant, the picture stays really clear and sharp to a certain point, but if you zoom in to the maximum the image does become distorted and not so clear.
There is the option of having the date and time in the corner of your photos, but personally I prefer to have this turned off and just right click on 'properties' on the computer instead if I need to see exactly when a photo was taken.
The camera requires 2 AA batteries to operate. From personal experience I would strongly recommend rechargeables as they last longer between charges and will also cost you less in the long run. On the rare occasion, i.e.: emergencies, I have used regular batteries, but I found the camera just ate the power from them. I remember I used Duracell batteries and literally managed to take about 3 photos before they died. This camera does use batteries quite fast even if they are rechargeable and for this reason I would have preferred the camera to use a lithium battery instead.
There was no memory card included with my camera so I had to buy one separately. The memory of the camera without an additional card is small and only holds around 5 photos depending on the pixel size you have selected.
== Other Information ==
When I got the camera it came complete with a USB cable for connection to the computer, however, I haven't used my USB cable as I have a memory card slot on my laptop and I find really quick and simple to use this instead as my past experience of USB cables is that they can take a while to connect and sometimes not work, so I simply take the easy option with this camera and use the memory card slot instead.
The camera is tough and admittedly I did put it through a lot when I had it. It went on various holidays as well as many nights out and it survived a few accidental drops on the floor, it even survived sliding around in the glove compartment in the car a few times, however the end of the line for this camera actually came when I had it in my pocket along with my mobile phone and my phone pressed into the LCD screen on the back and cracked it. Pretty careless to put them in the same pocket in the first place I know, but accidents happen. After this I managed to take a few more holiday snaps as I was on holiday at the time, but without the use of the viewing screen it was hard to see what I was actually getting pictures of and as a result the camera ended up on eBay for spares or repairs!
I cannot give you the exact camera dimensions as I no longer have it here to hand, however it was definitely the ideal size to take everywhere with you and fitted very comfortably into my jeans pocket although I don't recommend putting your phone in with it!
== Problems ==
Other than the few problems I have already mentioned with the colour in certain lights and the blurry photos when the battery power is low I didn't really experience any other problems with the camera. I always found it to be reliable and quick to respond to the push of the button and I'm sure that I would still be making full use of it now if I hadn't broken the screen.
== Price ==
I bought my camera in 2009 in Tesco for £49.95 which at the time I thought was a great price. I haven't seen it available in there for a while now and I do take a regular look at the cameras as for some reason I have a little fascination with them! It can still be found on Amazon for around £52. (January 2012).
== Overall ==
Overall would recommend the Fujifilm FinePix A850. I used to take it everywhere with me, it is lightweight and although it looks quite chunky it is actually reasonably slim. It fits nicely into pockets without causing any discomfort at all. I would recommend it to anyone who wants a small, decent camera, but if you don't want the hassle of being prepared with charged batteries or you are going somewhere that you wont have the facilities to charge your batteries then I wouldn't recommend this for you. It is performs well when the batteries are fully charged although it does get through them quite fast so always have some spare ones ready!
Thanks for reading :)
I've been reviewing my camera collection recently. I bought this little camera last February and it was £50, which at the time I thought was pretty good value for an 8MP camera. It's small and light and ridiculously easy to work - push ON, look at the display and press the button, and the auto settings do all the work.
It has 3x optical zoom and a slightly inferior digital zoom that's automatic in some of its modes. It has lots of modes, some of which I think are a bit ridiculous - does a beginner's camera really need a "candlelight" mode? But the comprehensiveness of it really does take away any guesswork; a beginner could scroll through the menu and find something to suit just about any eventuality.
The image quality of this camera is fantastic. Detail is sharp and clear, moving targets are compensated for so they don't blur (except when they're moving really fast!) and colour is bright and true. The pictures print really nicely too.
Battery life is good, I've been getting about seven hours out of it with reusable batteries (2 AA, nothing fancy). It lasted through a wedding from bride-walks-in to the after ceremony pictures to dinner to speeches to dancing and even to the bits where you hope everyone' batteries are dead. Excellent.
The thing I love most about this camera, though, is the movie quality. I was really surprised at how well this little compact takes film. The sound quality is a bit dodgy but the picture is really nice even on a bigger screen.
It does of course have downsides. It doesn't have a viewfinder, and I'd have liked one. Also, while a fall of less than three feet onto a tiled floor is never good for a camera, I didn't expect it to break the thing altogether!
Great beginners' camera but be a little bit gentle with it.
fantastic camera. really easy simple and good looking. took me abot 30 secs to work out how to use it. it is easy to set, time and date and programe. its quality for changing light settings and achieving a good picture. i love my camra. picture quality is great and when i get the photo's printed they are also great. i really enjoy using the camera. the only down side is the battery life lasts half and hour most. even with the best lithium ion battery's. would definetly recomend getting rechargables like i did. i can definatly recommend this to any one serious about getting a good camera for a good price. verry neat and tidy and you should consider this camera when in your search. the zoom is also verry good and can capture some amazing quality portrait style photo's for you to share with friends and family. ;)
=== Reasons for buying ===
I bought this Fujifilm FinePix A850 only one month ago, but I have been so impressed with it I thought I would write an early review about it "but I will keep it up dated" just to tell everyone how pleased and very impressed I am about it all. The lens in my kodak camera has jammed open and I am finding it very expensive to get repaired, so when I saw this camera on sale, for half it's original price, at my local store, I just had to buy it, because I hate to let a bargin pass me by. I really could not believe the price of it, for all the features it states it has. It is not the camera I really wanted to buy, but with cash short at the moment, I thought this one would tie me over in the meantime, since my old Kodak is broken and I have a new grandson and was missing taking photographs of him.
Inside the box when I first purchased this Fujifilm, I was very pleased to find a beautiful and very stylish camera. I think this camera comes in silver and black, but the one I had purchased, was black, and has beautiful, shiny silver buttons and zoom lens on it. It felt very sturdy and well made and everything on it was really well designed and well laid out. It is also very comfortable to hold and is not heavy in my hand.
Also inside the box, I received with this camera, was two AA alkaline batteries, a USB cable, a carry strap that attaches to the camera and two CDs. The first CD is the software for Windows and Macintosh. System requirements state, Windows Vista, XP Home, XP pro, 200 pro and Mac OSX. This camera is certified for Windows Vista. The second CD is the owners manual, which is Windows and Macintosh compatible. Fujifilm also has an excellent website you can visit if you have any problems or queries and I have found it to be a great website for further assistance.
This camera has a good sized LCD screen of around 2.5*3.0 inchs on the back of it. The screen is really clear and easy to see and view. On top of the camera is a shutter button and the on/off button and these are all very easy to work and press. On the front of the camera is the flash button which slides back and forth, the lens and cover, a mircrophone and a timer light. On the back of the camera is the display and back buttons, an indicator light and the zoom in/out button. All of these features seem to work very well and are not to hard to use. On the very bottom of the camera is the battery chamber and the memory card slot and both can be easily accessed by opening up the plastic cover that protects them.
Memory Card Slot.
The memory card slot seems very easy to use. I can pop my cards in and out with ease, when ever I desire. This camera stores your pictures in internal memory or on SD memory cards. The card can also be used for recording and playback. If your internal memory gets full, all your pictures can be easily tranferred to your computer for storage. The memory card sometimes springs out if you remove your finger to quickly after pushing the card in, so just a word of warning to push it in the slot quite slowly and keep your finger over it, until it is securely locked.
The camera is really easy to start up. Just press the on/off button to turn it on and the lens will move out and the lens cover opens up. The LCD monitor lights up, but will dim to save power, if you do not use it after 10 of more seconds. The full brightness comes back if you touch any off the buttons again. The camera can be set to Auto Power off, if you do not use it after your own selected time, which is great if you forget to turn it off. The playback mode is easy to use also, by pressing the back arrow for a short time.
The basic setup is straight forward also. A language selector appears on the LCD screen the first time you turn it on and by using the menus arrows, it allows you to select this and then hit OK. Setting the time and date is exactly the same, you just highlight what you need of what you want to do and press OK. Once this is all setup for your needs, it's all ready to start taking your pictures.
This camera is 8.1 mega pixels and it really does take excellent quality photographs. I really was amazed by how crisp, bright and very vibrant they all where, with this cheaper camera. I find the auto face finder really is spot on and all your images really are very central. It is the best shots of my family I have taken to date and they all seem in better alinement with peoples heads intact. If the camera is unable to focus poperly neither, the focus frame turns red, which is a great feature and helps you get the perfect pictures every time.
All your pictures you have taken can be viewed on the LCD monitor. the last picture you have taken is always displayed first on this camera. The little arrow on the menu, when pressed, shows you the next picture you took after that and so on. Deleting pictures you are not happy with is also very easy. The picture displayed on the monitor can be deleted by using the selector to highlight OK. You then press Menu ok and you will see the erase ok, which you press and the picture is deleted.
I use the flash when the lighting is poor. Sometimes the flash will go off several times I have found, so do not move your camera away from your image until it stops.
I have not copied the pictures I have taken yet to my computer, but the software was easy to put on with the FinePix Viewer disc supplied in this package. Just check your computer meets the system requirements before doing so.
Overall Opinion Of This Fujifilm A850.
Overall this is the best camera I have ever owned and it is also the cheapest I have bought. I really cannot believe for such a cheap price this camera does all the things that an expensive camera does and maybe better. The picture quality of the photographs I have taken are excellent. They are really clear and the colours so vibrant in them. I am really impressed indeed. I also am really pleased with this cameras looks, style and every single aspect off it. The quality is excellent and overall it is very impressive. I really would highly recommend anyone to try this camera out, as you will be amazed like me. This is my best camera to date, but the cheapest one I have ever bought. Well done Fugifilm. This cameras great.
(This review also puplished by me @Ciao.com under the same name hildas)