The FujiFilm FinePix A900

Seldom is a digital camera described as “strange” or “bizarre”. Yet those terms pop up frequently in professional reviews of the FujiFilm FinePix A900. Though this digital camera has good image quality, the unusual controls and specifications make it less than user-friendly.

To start with, the FujiFilm FinePix A900 is a 9 megapixel camera. That’s the good news. Most companies don’t even offer 9 megapixel models. But getting a high quality printable photo can be a little tricky with the FujiFilm FinePix A900. It seems that the while balance adjustment is hidden away in a maze of non-intuitive menu options. If users plan on printing their digital photos, they should adjust the white balance before they start shooting. Making adjustments in the middle of a shoot can be frustrating with the camera’s odd menu layout. While common scene modes like “landscape” are hidden, unusual ones like “baby” can be found right on the camera’s dial – just another strange quirk in the A900’s layout.

One very nice feature of the FujiFilm FinePix A900 is a long lens which gives this camera a 4x optical zoom. Similarly priced cameras only offer 3x zoom capability. The camera also has an infrared sensor which allows it to transfer photos to other infrared-enabled cameras and mobile phones.

The FujiFilm FinePix A900 does not have the sleek, stylish body so common to modern digital cameras. In fact, it has been described as “clunky”, weighing in at a hefty 200 grams plus. This camera is larger than most of its competitors, and critics complain that it barely fits into a shirt pocket. Other sticking points are the shutter lag and relatively long wait time until a picture takes. The FujiFilm FinePix A900 was outpaced by nearly all of its peers in regard to speed.

Some users prefer the thick body and greater weight of this model. Men with large hands find it easier to deal with than some of the super-slim alternatives. Surprisingly, given the camera’s odd menu layout, many users find it to be a very straightforward device. It is lauded for the ease with which a user can pick it up and start taking photos. Beginners and younger children might have a lot of fun with this sturdy model.

And even the most ardent detractor has to give credit where it’s due: if you can figure out all the controls, the FujiFilm FinePix A900 takes beautiful pictures. Colors are life-like, faces are crisp, and even the high magnifications seldom show grain. For all its quirks, this is a quality camera.

The FujiFilm FinePix A900 comes with 10MB of internal memory and is compatible with SD or xD cards. It runs on two AA batteries. The A900 retails for about $150-$170 US.