Saturday, July 2, 2011

Fuji XP20 = POS


And by that I don't meant "Point and Shoot" or "Point of Sale". I meant that the Fuji XP20 we bought two weeks ago turns out to be a piece of crappola.

I wanted to do this write up as soon as I decided to return it as I know there are others of you out there that have been thinking of buying a waterproof camera. Do not buy this one.

I've been debating the quality of pictures this was taking, as they seem to have a bit of a haze around them. I thought I could live with it. You know the whole "you get what you pay for" kind of thing. It was on sale at Costco for $139, regularly $179, and I am sure there are better options out there for under $200.

This morning we geared up and headed to Saturday morning coffee and then a group of us rode to Philomath (3 miles West) for a classic car show. Troubadour had the Canon SX120 that we bought on Bobskoot's recommendation and I had the new Fuji XP20 in my jacket pocket. That's right. I remembered to put the pocket camera in my pocket. I'm learning.

We wandered around and each took over 100 photos. When we got home we uploaded them into iPhoto. What an incredible difference in quality. Please keep in mind we were both using the AUTO feature on the cameras, meaning the camera chose exposure and mode. The following photos are completely unedited. What you see is how the camera took them.

This photo was taken with the Canon:

And this one from the exact same spot with the Fuji:

The quality of the Fuji is unacceptable.

I tried it at home as a test. Basil was the subject. No back lighting, no direct sunlight, just natural daylight in the living room.

This one taken with the Canon:

And this one with the Fuji:

Granted the one with the Canon is a closer zoom. Technically you think it would be more out of focus. I don't know why the Fuji cannot seem to take a clear picture. It is either really washed out or in some cases from pictures at the car show over exposed.

After seeing the glaring difference in quality I looked up the Fuji XP20 on Costco's website to see if there were any reviews. There are several and almost all are bad. The blue and orange versions have a 1 star out of 5. Not good. Most people are finding they crap out the first time they see water.

Needless to say we are making a trip to Costco tomorrow to return it. We'll see what else they have in stock that we might like. Luckily Costco has a 90 day return policy on their cameras. It gives a person a good chance to use it to see if it is a keeper. I am wondering about a smaller version of the Canon or even a Nikon. Maybe Bobsoot has a recommendation on a pocket sized camera - he did so well with the last suggestion.

I did manage to get a few good shots at the car show and will post them up in a future blog post. Here is a teaser photo:

- Au Revoir

" Over second and third cups flow matters of high finance, high state, common gossip and low comedy. Coffee is a social binder, a warmer of tongues, a soberer of minds, a stimulant of wit, a foiler of sleep if you want it so. From roadside mugs to the classic demi-tasse, it is the perfect democrat." ~ Author Unknown


  1. Wow, those pictures taken with the Fuji X20 were dreadful. Good that Costco have such a good returns policy!

  2. Trobairitz: I like to stick with Canon or Lumix. even the waterproof Olympus models don't get good reviews. The flat Sony waterproof model is nearly $300. up here and the excellent Lumix TS is close to $400. For reviews go to .

    it's not waterproof but you might like the size, Canon HS300, it's on sale here for $229. slightly over your budget but is has 1080p video mode, you could put it in your pocket and not know it is there

    Riding the Wet Coast

  3. Sorry to hear of your experiences Trobairitz, but thanks for the warning. I'll just stick with my Canon Ixus 105, which I've found excellent in terms of picture quality and slimness for motorcycle jackets.

  4. Thank you for the update. I have been looking at a Canon waterproof point and shoot (don't remember the model) but was waiting to hear what you thought of the Fuji model. We don't have a Costco up here so no stores with a very generous return policy.


  5. Wow, definitely has some issues. At least you got it at Costco - great return policy. Can't help with camera recommendations, but one possibility, I use a non-waterproof camera when kayaking. I keep it in a pelican box, then I just try be careful with it when out of the box. It's gotten wet from rain and/or splashing, and it wouldn't take a dunking, but it's worked out okay.

  6. We bought my daughter a fuji finepix WPZ about 2 years ago and it takes great pictures & is waterproof. I have a little canon SD1200 & love it. Maybe you got the made on 'Friday afternoon before quitting time camera' or the 'first thing Monday morning I don't want to be at work camera' . When we bought our daughter an upgrade camera for Christmas we bought a Nikon D5000 - she loves it. I think if you stick to Nikon or Canon you can't go wrong. Good luck with getting a replacement,

  7. Sorry for your trouble and thanks for passing it along. Perhaps you should send a link to this post to Fuji.

  8. @Gary - yes they are horrible. I agree

    @Bobskoot - thanks for the suggestions, we are looking into the Canon HS300. It is regularly about $200-$225 here from what we've found. Walmart and Staples seem to be the two that sell the HS300. We can always make it waterproof with a ziploc.

    @Geoff - Canon seems to be the camera of choice - with good reason

    @Richard - You don't have a Costco with a good return policy but there may be a website that has a good return or exchange policy.

    @Bluekat - Pelican box is a good idea but I am wondering how awkward that would be in a riding jacket pocket. Would work for a top case though.

    @Dar - thanks for stopping by. I have linked your blog and I am looking forward to getting caught up on reading it. I think I agree with you - Canon and Nikon seem to be the way to go. My boss has a couple of Nikons and loves them.

    @Irondad - Troubadour suggested I put the full model number in the heading so that if someone googles that model my blog might come up. Good idea though sending the link to Fuji.

    We haven't bought a new camera yet, but are still researching and need to find time to go look at the Canon Bobskoot suggested. Will keep everyone posted. Now we know why we don't usually do impulse buys.

  9. Hi! I was looking at the Best Buy flyer and they have a compact Canon Elph Power shot 12.1 megapixel' 4x optical zoom cam for $179.99 And another SX230HS 12.1 with Geotagging for pics & 14x optical zoom for $329.99. The first one is very similar to mine and very compact, COLOURS are right on and heck it takes amazing pics. I took it whale watching and it was great. They also have a 16gb card on sale for $24.

  10. Thanks Dar. Will have to check it out. Hubby (Troubadour) is recovering form hernia surgery and needs to get some walking in so maybe we'll wander around a few stores.

  11. Ouch! Those are some bad comparison photos. I'm sorry you have having such poor results from the camera. Oilburner hasn't experienced that level of issues with his. But many of his "light" shots are due to fingerprints over the lens... :)