Fujifilm has launched of the FinePix F50fd, the successor to the FinePix F31fd.

The all-new sleek and slim metal body is a mere 22.9mm thick and the ‘Aero curve’ design means that the FinePix F50fd isn’t just capable of taking beautiful pictures; it’s stylish and slim enough to slip into any pocket or purse. Dual xD-Picture Card and SD/SDHC compatibility gives users the freedom to choose from a wide range of high capacity memory cards.

The FinePix F50fd has a larger-than-average 1/1.6-inch 12-megapixel Super CCD HR sensor and the Real Photo Processor II chip. Fujifilm says that together these allow ultra high-resolution capture with breathtaking detail, even at high ISO settings.

The newly developed sensor design features several key improvements that increase the efficiency with which each pixel gathers light, and an enhanced two-stage noise reduction system ensures that noise is kept to a minimum without valuable detail being lost. Fujifilm says that despite doubling the number of pixels, the new sensor offers similar performance to the groundbreaking FinePix F30 and F31fd at sensitivity settings up to ISO 3200. For shooting in the very lowest light without compromising image quality, the FinePix F50fd offers sensitivity modes of up to ISO 6400 at lower resolutions.

The FinePix F50fd also features CCD-shift image stabilisation for avoiding the effects of camera shake at longer shutter speeds. The combination of high ISO and CCD-shift offers a complete system for avoiding blur caused by hand shake or subject motion.

The F50fd is the first FinePix model to feature the second generation of Fujifilm’s Face Detection technology. Face Detection 2.0 offers dramatic performance and capability improvements and adds innovative new features, according to Fujifilm

Face Detection works by triangulating eyes and mouth, using an algorithm to optimise focus, white balance and exposure for up to ten faces in a single frame. A green square surrounds the face of the primary subject on the camera's LCD screen, whilst white squares identify up to nine other subjects. Movement tracking keeps the camera 'locked on' to its subjects until they move out of the picture. The technology works irrespective of the subject's position in the frame, and is not confused by spectacles

Most face detection systems work only when the subject (or subjects) are looking directly at the camera, and most cannot detect a face if it is at too steep an angle (such as when the person is resting their head on someone’s shoulder or lying down). Fujifilm says that Face Detection 2.0 can detect a subject in full profile and at virtually any angle (through 270 degrees), even if they are moving within the frame.

The FinePix F50fd also uses Face Detection technology to find and instantly correct any red eye from every face in the frame – either as the shot is taken or in playback.

In Portrait Enhancer mode the FinePix F50fd’s powerful automatic retouching system gives skin tones a silky-smooth texture and removes blemishes such as spots and wrinkles, according to Fujifilm.

The FinePix F50fd features a large high-resolution 2.7 inch, 230,000 pixel LCD screen, which is coated with Fujifilm's proprietary Wide View film to minimize glare and reflections.

The FinePix F50fd will be available from UK retailers in early September. Pricing will be announced nearer to the date of the launch.