A camera’s features are always secondary to its actual performance – we know that as well as the next snapper obsessive. But sometimes a camera breaks new ground, and it’s worth having a look at exactly what it has that makes it so special.
In the case of FujiFilm’s Z100fd none of the features are in themselves enough to make you leap with excitement – 8MP resolution, face detection, image stabilizer, 2.7in LCD, we’ve seen these before.
But the fact that they are all encased within a super slim 19.8mm body along with a 5x optical zoom marks the Z100 out as one to watch.
The colours and the shape
There's something a little art deco about the Z100fd. A range of hues are available from the rather dour and business like battleship grey of our review sample to a slightly hideous pink. There’s also an odd sounding but actually rather attractive brown version out there.
Still, whatever the colour the build quality of the Z100 is impeccable. It feels solid and reassuringly weighty in your hand, and the combination lens cover/start button feels great as it clicks diagonally across the brushed face of the camera to get the party started.
The flash clothes are by no means there to hide a lack of substance. Within the pretty, 20mm-thin metal body is a 5x zoom, an optical image stabiliser and an 8MP sensor capable of better results than most compacts packing two or three megapixels.
Whatever issues you may have with FujiFilm’s Super CCDs and their resolution, this camera is capable of taking some excellent shots, full of rich and vibrant colours and packed with enough detail for blowing up large.
There are a couple of minor issues with the Z100fd. It's a little slow to get going, but not significantly more so than other compacts of this size. And some of the functions can be a little tricky to access thanks to the convoluted menu system.
But you'll quickly forget about these niggles. The LCD is hyper-crisp, and the card slot is versatile enough to take SD or xD cards. Combine this with the two-tone looks, delightful diagonally sliding lens cover and the great performance, and you have our new favourite compact snapper.