Hot on the heels of the HS10 release, the announcement today of the Fujifilm Finepix HS20 will certainly whet the appetite of those looking for an all-in-one superzoom compact.
Initial details are fairly scarce, and it seems the HS20's one major update over the previous HS10 model is the inclusion of a 16-megapixel EXR CMOS sensor, rather than the 10MP BSI-CMOS found in the HS10. Indeed the first glimpse of press information into the HS20 does refer to the camera as the ‘HS20EXR'.
Fuji's EXR technology is different to conventional digital sensor construction by utilising an innovative colour filter array and aligning large pixels binned closely to one another. However, we'll have to wait to fully test the final HS20 release to see just how much difference the fairly steep increase from 10MP to 16MP makes to final picture quality - such a resolution increase may actually counter much of the EXR technology's benefit due to such highly populated pixel arrays on a small sensor size effectively limiting the amount of available light. (Update, Saturday 8th January 2011: Fuji has confirmed that the sensor is not an EXR construction, but the read out utilises 'EXR processing'.)
Elsewhere the HS20EXR looks to utilise the same massive 30x optical zoom (24-720mm full-frame equivalent) Fujinon lens as per the HS10, though there is an increase in its zooming speed due to a reduction in size of the internal part of the flashgun to allow for improved mechanics. There's also an improved user interface and versatile video capture functions. (Update, Saturday 8th January 2011: HS20's hotshoe is also now TTL-capable and will be compatible with two new Fuji flashguns also due for release in April.)
Expected to arrive in April 2011, the Fuji HS20EXR will cost £399 upon its initial release.