Best Underwater Camera Group Test 2013 - Fujifilm FinePix XP60

Fujifilm FinePix XP60, £150

Fujifilm FinePix XP60 front view

 

Key Specs

Sensor 16.4MP
Sensor Size  1/ 2.3in
Lens 28-140mm
ISO 100-6400
Display 2.7in, 230k-dot 
HD Video 1080i
Dimensions 104.1 x 66.5 x 26.3mm
Weight 165g

The XP60 boasts an impressive specification for its price. Costing £150 it's the most affordable tough underwater cameras of the six and is waterproof, shockproof, sandproof and freezeproof like its rivals. With regards to imaging, it features a 16.4MP CMOS sensor, 5x optical zoom (28-140mm) and shares the same ISO range of 100-6400 as offered by the Olympus TG-2 and Panasonic FT5.

Regrettably, the size and resolution of the screen lets the Fuji XP60 down. Measuring 2.7in with a 230k-dot resolution, it's smaller and doesn't provide the same clarity or sharpness as the compacts with larger 3in screens. Sensor-shift image stabilisation is provided, and in addition to continuous burst shooting at a lightning-fast 10fps, full HD movie recording is available, which can focus within 9cm when set to its macro mode.

Build & Performance

With a small and lightweight design, the Fujifilm XP60 targets those who don't want to carry a heavy compact in their pocket. It's no more cumbersome to carry than a typical compact, but it doesn't feel as solid or as refined as its rivals. That said, the battery/SD card door features a robust locking button like the AW110 to prevent it being opened accidentally underwater.

 

Fujifilm FinePix XP60 sample image

Image Quality

The XP60's images were the softest of the six cameras. As soon as you begin to push past ISO 200, detail is lost and noise becomes more of an issue. The sensor only manages to resolve 14 lines per millimetre, while the richness of colour saturation drops off as the sensitivity is increased beyond ISO 1600.

Underwater Camera Test

The XP60's underwater performance left us underwhelmed and was mediocre in comparison with its rivals. Set to its underwater mode, the camera not only struggled to acquire focus on our subject, but it produced images that were significantly darker than those captured by the others.

Freeze and Shock Test

The XP60 was the last of the six models to switch on after being frozen. The On/Off button had frozen solid, but breathing on it soon defrosted it. Shockproof to 1.5m, we held the XP60 at arm's length before dropping it. It survived the test without a hitch and was damage-free afterwards.

Pros - Small and compact; Simple design and button layout; 10fps shooting
Cons - Dark underwater performance; Small screen; Low screen resolution