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Fujifilm pumps up the point-and-shoot with world’s fastest autofocusing system

Claiming it as a “premium compact ultra zoom with world’s fastest autofocus speed,” Fujifilm showed off the FinePix F900EXR. The camera uses a half-inch 16-megapixel EXR-CMOS II sensor and a new hybrid autofocusing system that automatically switches between phase detection AF and contrast detection AF. Throw in a long 20x zoom and Wi-Fi, and you have yourself a point-and-shoot on steroids. 

The F900EXR’s hybrid AF system can focus as fast as 0.05 seconds when using phase detection AF. The EXR-CMOS II sensor, in conjunction with the new EXR Processor II, is designed to deliver “superior image quality and performance – especially in low-light situations,” says Fujifilm. The EXR Processor II is twice as fast as the previous generation, and the camera has a startup time of 1.1 seconds; interval time of 0.5 seconds between shots; and burst-mode rates of 11 frames per second.

The 20x Fujinon lens gives users wide-angle and long-zoom shots (25-500mm). You can get up close to a subject in Macro Mode, down to 1.9 inches. The camera features a CMOS-shift image stabilization.

Built into the F900EXR is Wi-Fi. When used with the free Fujifilm Camera Application for iOS or Android, you can transfer content to a smartphone or tablet, which serves as a bridge for uploading your stuff to Facebook and other social networking sites. It’s not the instant gratification that smartphone users are used to, but you’re also getting improved image quality. Another app, Fujifilm PC Autosave, lets users back up content to a computer via a home Wi-Fi network.

The F900EXR also shoots Full HD (1080p) videos at 60 fps. Fujifilm says the sensor and phase detection AF delivers smooth videos with superior color reproduction, and built-in stereo mics can record high-quality audio.

Other features of the F900EXR include a 3-inch LCD rated at 920K dots that’s viewable under bright light or wide viewing angles. There are also filters like Toy Camera and Soft Focus that you can use to “enhance” your photos.

The F900EXR goes on sale in March with a list price of $400.

Fujifilm FinePix F900EXR

Fujifilm also announced another camera, the FinePix F850EXR. It uses an older 16-megapixel EXR-CMOS sensor but has the newer EXR Processor II engine. It lacks the fast hybrid autofocusing system of the F900EXR, but it’s still decent (0.21-second autofocusing, 1.1-second startup, 0.5-second interval, 9 fps burst mode). There’s also no Wi-Fi built in. Otherwise, it’s fairly identical.

The F850EXR has a list price of $300, and it also goes on sale in March.

Fujifilm FinePix F850EXR

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