• Price When Reviewed: 212

  • Pros: Large LCD screen. High ISO rating for great performance in low-light conditions.

  • Cons: Few manual controls. Noisy photos at ISO 1600. Images not sharp enough.

  • Expert Rating: We rate this 7 out of 10We rate this 7 out of 10We rate this 7 out of 10We rate this 7 out of 10We rate this 7 out of 10 We rate this 7 out of 10

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The most eye-catching feature of the Fujifilm FinePix V10 Zoom is its big LCD. The three-inch screen almost fills the back of the camera. It’s handy for framing shots and makes viewing images a pleasure.

The V10 starts up quickly (in less than a second), and shutter lag is generally minimal, though it’s sometimes noticable in low light.

The camera feels sturdy despite its relatively slim profile. Operating the V10 with one hand isn’t practical: the buttons on the back panel run all along the bottom because the LCD leaves little room for controls. These buttons are small and too close together for nimble navigation.

To navigate the menus you use a pair of tiny left/right buttons and an up/down toggle. This arrangement is less than ideal – with a better design, some selections might have taken fewer steps. On the plus side, the buttons double up on functions, so you can quickly change the flash mode, turn on macro mode, or activate the self-timer. A dedicated button on the top of the camera offers ready access to the quality mode, ISO, and colour settings menus.

The V10 lacks some basic manual controls, such as aperture-priority and shutter-priority modes. You can’t bracket its exposures or calibrate its white balance. Instead there are six basic scene modes.

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In the novel Natural Light and With Flash mode, for example, the camera takes two shots in quick succession – one with flash and one without. The camera’s Night mode is designed for shooting in the evening from a tripod, since it prioritizes for a long shutter speed.
This camera offers impressive performance in low light because of its high sensitivity. The FinePix V10’s ISO range, which tops out at 1600, makes it easier to take photos of dimly lit subjects without using the flash. However, the photos we took at ISO 1600 had a significant level of noise: coloured specks were particularly noticeable in shadow areas. Though photos snapped at ISO 800 showed substantially less noise, it was still apparent.
In our tests, the V10’s image quality was average. Most impressive was the V10’s exposure accuracy, but its images were less sharp than most point-&-shoots. The novelty of the huge screen will please the consumer market, but there’s not much else to the V10.
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