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Showing 1-10 of 74 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 89 reviews
on April 14, 2012
I have been an amateur photographer since I got a Asahi Pentax spotmatic II while I was in the army in 1971. I eventually had many lenses and accessories for it. When it was damaged beyond repair I got a Nikon autofocus 35mm. I was happy with that too. This is my 3rd Fuji digital camera, I loved the first one which I eventually gave to my son and replaced with an S1800 which I did not like. I did a lot of research before I settled on the HS25. The reviews were very good on the HS20 except for noise. The HS25 features a redesigned CMOS to improve that. I was not interested in RAW shooting and I like using AA batteries. Those were the main differences between the HS25 and the HS30 which is $100.00 more. I just unboxed mine last night and spent a lot of time with the owners manual starting to learn all the features available. First, I love the feel of the camera, the quality is first rate. I looked at the Canon SX40 and while the reviews were good, it felt and looked cheap.This camera looks expensive. I really like the manual zoom lens. It brings me back to the 35mm days and I feel like I have better control.It seems very smooth and natural. The autofocus is very fast which was important to me. I have only taken about 10 photos so far in my house at night without a flash and I am pleased with them. I can't wait to take some pictures of the hummingbirds in my back yard. I will come back and update this report. So far I am extremely pleased with my purchase. As always, Amazon had the best price and got it to me quickly.

UPDATE: I have taken a variety of pictures with my new camera and I couldn't be happier! Pictures of my grandkids that would have been blurred with my old camera are very good. I took some macros of flowers and a couple closeups of my dogs. All perfect. The manual zoom is now just intuitive, memories of my old 35mm days I guess. I recommend it completely.

NEW UPDATE: It's been a week now and as I learn more it just keeps getting better. There is a website: dpreview.com that has camera tests etc, but also has forums where camera owners share tips, advice and photos. It is very helpful.
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1212 comments| 150 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 26, 2012
I just started using the HS25EXR and find that it will suit me very well. I did a lot of research before deciding which camera to buy. I wanted something more than what I had, but I could not afford to get into the DSLR that I wanted, so I picked this. It's not likely to work for everyone. I was looking for something that offered manual options, great images and solid video performance. If you want a huge auto zoom and detachable lenses, you won't be happy with this. My initial tests show that it's easy to use with a lot of advanced features, including some I will likely never use. I like the heft of the camera and the way it fits in my hand. I don't feel like it will slip away from me during use. I feel like I have good control over it and the buttons are fairly easy to access. I still have more testing to do, and I'm one who likes to decipher the use manuals so on first blush:

Pros:
- Solid Camera
- Great images
- HD video
- Easy to use
- Very nice, clear digital display
- Fairly intuitive if you just want to start using it out of the box
- Huge zoom

Possible cons:
- The manual focus ring doesn't seem as responsive as the auto focus, but there are ways to work with that.
- Manual is not clear whether you can connect this and use it from an optional (not included) power source beyond the batteries.

I plan on looking into the power source question and I am thrilled to be able to add a protective (or other) 58 mm lens filter to the camera.

Some people might complain that there is no full printed manual, but that is easy to over come. It comes on a CD and the PDF file is easy to copy and transfer as needed to use on any device or print as you like.
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on February 10, 2013
I recently purchased this camera both for myself, and for the public library I work at. The camera feels like a $650 DSR. I cannot believe how little it cost.
Best features if you are just looking to point and shoot and do HD video, why you should get THIS and not a camera for $100 less:

There is NO lag time from when you press the button to take a photo until the photo is taken. You see it, you press the button, the photo appears on your display exactly as you saw it

Amazing performance in low light. I rarely need the flash!

The Flash is AMAZING. You know how sometimes the flash overexposes everyone? Not here. With my old camera, also a $250 product, I used to have to stand a bit away from the object or person I was photographing, and then, zoom in so I could use the flash. Otherwise, there was overexposure. Here, I can stand one foot from the person I am photographing, and they will be perfectly exposed. You would not even know I used a flash!

Zoom--oh my goodness, this is amazing! Pictures are still super sharp even after getting way up close.

Video--seemless. Push a button to start recording. Press the same button to stop, and you can immediately start shooting photos again. The video is HD. Wonderful.

Batteries--uses 4 AA. Just get yourself a set of rechargeables and you are good. You do not need to find a fancy kind or plug in the entire camera. That said, I keep back up batteries with me. The camera does NOT use up batteries quickly at all. That was a problem with my old camera. The batteries have a long life here, but recharagable seems best to me.

Connection to devices. The camera comes with cables to connect it to all of our devices for easy download of pictures and video.

This is just about one percent of the reasons to buy this camera.

I will throw in that you can do real manual photography, like in the old days, artistic stuff, with this item. I was a black and white darkroom girl, and if I want to adjust shutter and F stop, I can do it all the way! Just like with my old Nikkon.

Enjoy this one!
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on February 12, 2013
There are three criticisms I have of the Fujifilm HS25EXR. One is cosmetic and the other two are technical. The display of information has a little less than professional appearance - not a big issue.

Try connecting the camera to your computer before installing the software. If it shows up on the file menu then the software is not needed. If you install the software it will make the Photo Album appear each and every time a device is inserted into a USB. Then it will have to be disabled in msconfig.exe. This is very annoying.

The shutter speed in Aperture Priority, aperture in Shutter Priority and both in Program Mode are only displayed if the Dynamic Range is not set to Auto. I prefer they are always displayed and find this disappointing.

What I do like about the camera is a feature in the Program Mode. Once the camera is held steady the aperture can be adjusted smaller if desired. I am very satisfied with this.

The number of selections for Panorama impressed me (120, 180 and 360). I can see a lot of potential here for great pictures and special purpose photography. I chose the HS25 because I have hopes of hiking a national trail and do not want to be waiting in lines to recharge batteries. The absence of zoom motor noise is essential for wildlife photography.

At no time have I ever been disappointed with the resolution of photos from my 5MP Kodak P850. But I can see room for improvement of detail on grand landscapes and at 16MP I expect the HS25 will deliver.

P.S. Late 2014 I reinstalled the software on my computer and the Photo Album problem when a device is inserted into a USB port did not appear again.

Although I am very happy with the camera, I seem to have one problem. Under certain lighting conditions (usually partly cloudy) the camera is not reproducing the true colors exactly. I have used this camera and a Kodak 5MP P850 here in the Grand Canyon. Comparing pictures, the P850 consistently gave more accurate color reproduction with less manipulation. The P850 has sunny, partly cloudy and cloudy white balance settings, while the HS25 only has sunny and cloudy. It has become a matter of trial and error to take several pictures, pointing the HS25 at different things and setting the custom white balance and then viewing the results until it comes close to what I actually see. A friend with an expensive Nikon DSLR seemed to be having a similar problem here.

I find the manual zoom a much faster process for composing a scene than repeatedly auto zooming back and forth to get what I want. That was one excellent foresight.
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on April 5, 2013
This is my first digital camera. I quit my photography business for five years, and then resumed it, so I didn't buy any digital equipment during that time. I would give this five stars, because it's a great camera. But I don't have anything else to compare it with because it's my first digital camera, and I just started using it. Hence, the four stars. But I wouldn't be surprised to update this later and make it five.

However - BIG however - you should definitely buy this as a starter camera. I have been VERY pleased with this. I did my first shoot with it last weekend, and the pictures blew me away. The sixteen megapixels (can you believe a camera in this price range has 16mp? Neither can I) meant super-high-quality pictures - certainly up to my standards, which are astronomical. The color in those pictures was bold, bright, and clear, the way I like it. Fuji lenses are used in scientific applications, and it shows. The sharpness of the lenses could cut your finger. And I love the looooong zoom range - 24-720 is PRETTTTYYYY impressive. I wanted a bridge/hybrid camera because I don't want to buy, carry, and change a bunch of lenses. Carrying this thing is a piece of cake. Very lightweight, and convenient.

The settings will blow you away. It has settings I've never seen on any other camera, even on my Canons (which I still love): a party setting, a beach setting, even settings for dogs and cats - I kid you not. You can adjust the sharpness, and the color, which I like. Overall, I've had almost too much fun experimenting with this camera. By the time I did that shoot last weekend, I knew the camera well enough to figure out what settings I wanted to use - and it didn't disappoint. I didn't have to change anything during the shoot, and I got the results I wanted.

I like that it uses 4 AA batteries. I don't have to order a specific battery for it, which might mean waiting for it when I need it most, and I don't have to charge it, either. The only thing is, the batteries that come it with are some cheap kind that doesn't last. Get some Duracells instead.

I've heard that some monitors aren't really accurate in terms of color, sharpness, and especially exposure, so I wasn't sure I'd trust this one. Well, I do now. Everything was spot-on accurate.

I do have to be careful about highlights on some settings, but this camera has so many settings that I can change them easily if I don't like how the highlights look. Not a problem, actually.

I started considering Fujifilm cameras when Amazon sent me a notice of a sale on them. Thank you, Amazon! The Fujifilm line fits all my needs. In fact, now I'm planning to buy the hs50exr, one of the higher-end cameras.

If you're looking for a digital camera that has a VERY high MP range, good sharpness, great settings that are fun to use, a long zoom range, and is lightweight, and convenient, at an unbelievably low price, check this out. I'm still planning to use Canons, which are always terrific, but now Fujifilm will probably be my main brand from now on.

Update, 4/20/13; I'm so pleased with this camera, I've put another one in my Amazon.com cart. I need another camera for my business, and I think it speaks volumes that a professional photographer would trust her business to THIS camera. I'm still planning to buy the hs50exr, but I want another hs25exr! (I think my plans to still use Canons are...kaput.)
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on July 10, 2012
About Fujifilm cameras Finepix HS25EXR and Finepix HS30EXR

Finally i have received a Fujifilm camera from Amazon. The delivery was super fast. Although both cameras Fujifilm Finepix HS25 EXR and Fujifil Finepix HS30 EXR are almost similar, I purchased the first one not because I wanted to spare $100, but because I liked its batteries: standard 2AA rechargeable Ni-Mh.
I chose between Fujifilm Finepix and Canon Power Shot SX40HS or Nikon Coolpix P510, Fujifilm even the other two cameras have a longer optical zoom: Canon 40, Nikon 41,7 and Fuji 30, because:
- Fuji has external flesh, and Nikon hasn't.
- Fuji works with standard batteries and Canon and Nikon do not.
- Fuji has a wider diapason of shutter speed and aperture.
- Fuji has a larger sensor which gives a better dynamic range, and against Canon, has more pixels.
- Fuji camera is a more versatile than Canon or Nikon. It has a lot of features, more than you will need.
- Fuji uses a new sensor called EXR which is said to work better than other sensors, although I cannot confirm this.
- Fuji has manual zoom ring, instead of electric zoom, which is more convenient, more professional like and gives longer battery life.
- Fuji has a 58 mm thread so you can add filters or a teleconverter, the others do not have.
- Fuji gives you the possibility to shoot in 3D. I made a test and received a perfect 3D picture. No other camera does this. I was amazed.
I can not compare image quality of cameras because I do not have Canon and Nikon cameras, but I do not expect any conspicuous difference.
For all these, I think that the Fujifilm Finepix HS25EXR, or HS30EXR are today the best bridge SRL-like cameras in the market. Their prices are reasonable.

What I do not like to these Fuji cameras:

- Awful instruction booklet, HS25EXR dos not have at all. Its booklet is in the CD.
- Fujifilm does not have an exposure live view. So you can not see on the LCD what the final picture will look like (how light or dark it will be) before you actually take the shot.
- The image stabilization is not too good, although I do not know how good is in Canon or Nikon cameras especially at lower speeds or in high zooms when it is needed more.
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on August 19, 2012
I've owened several other Fujifilm FinePix cameras and this one is by far the best. I like that you can manually zoom in on your subject. It's very easy to use. I took my daughter's Senior pictures with it and had people asking where I had her pictures taken. They were surprised to hear that I took them myself on the HS25EXR. I also take a lot of soccer and basketball pictures. They turn out great even when the subject is moving quickly. I would recommend this camera to anyone who would like a more professional type camera but doesn't want to spend $700. This camera takes just as good of pictures and I spent around $300 on it.
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on May 20, 2013
{See update below reducing the rating to a 2]

I bought the HS 25 EXR last summer and have taken thousands of pictures and videos with it. I agree with most of the PROs on the rest of the reviews, and with some of the CONs.

My last digital camera was a Fuji S 6000 that I wore out over years of heavy travel and consistent use. Loved it. It came with a standard bayonet mount lens hood. Any shortcomings were vastly outweighed by advantages and ease of use over the others out there, feature for feature.

When it began to show signs of aging, I noticed that the HS 25 EXR looked like a good replacement. AA batteries are a must for me. Unfortunately the 256 EX came with no lens hood, unlike the S 6000 that had one standard. It didn't seem like a big deal at the time, but many of the shots show color washouts and flare when light comes from the front. This is simply NOT acceptable.

I went online a few months ago and ordered a lens hood that looked correct. But it was a screw-in that lopped off the corners of the picture on wide angle. That was time and money wasted.

In the last few days I have spent over an hour searching through the online stores including the FUJI factory site for the proper lens hood. All that's out there are screw-in hoods that lop the corners off the pictures at wide angle. I emailed Fuji for a source for a proper bayonet mount lens hood. Fuji replied with a number that was useless, their third party online sales company. So far have also spent over an hour calling the supposed Fujifilm direct customer support line at 1-800-659-3854 and going through the circular prompts that keep sending you back to the third party servicer that has no such filters. The latest nice lady at the number I was told to call said she got into the same endless runaround. I told her precisely what I was looking for. She took my name and number and promised to have someone call me. Eventually a couple days later someone did. The message told me to call ShopFujifilm, a third party supplier that handles some Fuji accessories: the same place I had already been told to call four times. They have no such item.

Without the lens bayonet mount lens hood, there is a loss of color saturation and there are unfortunate flare problems when strong light hits the camera lens directly at any angle even with a very clean lens. The sun or bright lights do not need to be in the field of view to impair the image. Fuji should charge an extra couple bucks for the lens hood and put in in the box, and have PROPER bayonet replacements easily available online without having to waste hours and hours. These issues are based on almost 100 GB of photos and videos in the past 9 months including 64 GB of photos and videos taken in the last month in various countries.

With the PROPER lens hood in place,for which there IS a mounting groove on the outside of the front of the lens and for which the lense itself was designed, the saturation and flare problems should be fully solved and the camera should get 5 stars. Till then, no. Not even close.

However, just the process of trying to get the proper hood is a trip through Fuji Hell. [See UPDATE at bottom]

The manual with any detail is ONLY online. Get ready to spend a lot of time with the manual on screen and printing out the pages you might want to refer to. You should do this no matter whether it is online or in booklet form. The power of the camera can only be learned through going through the manual and practicing. I was happy to spend the time going through the manual, but the larger print-outs of the ten or so pages I wanted to have available are bulky for travel compared to the detailed factory manual that was included with the S 6000.

Why Fuji would decide to take such unnecessary steps BACKWARDS is impossible to tell.

The S 6000 rated a full 5 in my view being wonderful considering current technology. It never had any problems until age and new technology told me to replace it.

The HS 25 EXR would have had a better rating if it came with a standard bayonet lens hood similar to the S 6000 even with the online manual inconvenience. There is no excuse for a camera that invites color wash out and flare due to a lack of a simple lens hood. At this point I have to be certain that the only pictures I take are with the light from the rear; otherwise I need to use another camera with a lens hood.

I plan to look elsewhere for a replacement for my next trip if no bayonet mount lens hood is available.

UPDATE: 5/22/2013

After 5 more ping-pongs through the Fuji hell maze over another wasted hour, I was told expressly by a Fuji technician that Fuji makes no bayonet mount lens hood for this camera, has no plans to do so, and that if it's not made by a third party, tough luck.

Phoning ShopFujiFilm at 866-289-3854 as directed by Fujifilm America provided express confirmation that there are no third party bayonet mount lens hoods for this camera.

Unfortunately the lack of lens hood leads to washed out colors and flare, two things that are easily avoided with a proper lens hood. My lens is regularly cleaned with proper lens spray and lens cloth and is kept dust and smudge-free at all times.

Fuji's cavalier attitude, terrible phone support, and failure to provide the simplest of parts even at extra cost compels me to reduce the rating to a 2. My gut tells me it should be a 1, but the pictures taken with all light from the rear are acceptable and it's fairly easy to use.

I can't imagine Canon or Nikon (or any reputable camera company for that matter) not offering a proper lens hood even as an option. But Fuji doesn't give a damn. Since that's their attitude about this issue, it probably extends to their other areas of camera functions now as well. I have lost faith in Fuji and will not buy another Fuji product.

Perhaps there's a good reason the Fuji products are not rated well by the camera magazines other than that Fuji doesn't spend as much ad money. Perhaps there are MANY good reasons.

Maybe someday someone from Fuji will call and help me get a lens hood. I'm not holding my breath.
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on September 8, 2013
I've had a Fuji S5000 for more than 10 years. Loved that camera, but have been looking for a step-up, better technology, longer zoom and more shooting options, and the HS25EXR is it. I'm amateur photographer so in my shopping I eliminated the need for RAW mode. I wanted the EXR line because of the technology and the all-around rubber grip which DOES make holding this camera easier. I also like that it runs on 4-AAs rather than a battery pack. I can use my rechargeable AAs from my S5000.

The functionality of the camera is similar to the S5000 so getting started was easy. The HS25EXR takes much better shots in low light and at long ranges better than my old S5000 (just better technology). You can shoot fully-automatic or change to manual settings. Thought I wouldn't care about the tilt screen, but it's actually quite nice having it. Enjoy the manual zoom, I think it saves battery power and you can adjust zoom while shooting moves. The face recognition technology is much improved from my former camera. I'm really enjoying taking pictures and experimenting with all the different shooting modes.

I did look at other brands when shopping for this camera. Familiarity with the brand and camera functionality, manual zoom, all-around rubber grip, and price were my big deciding factors. The Nikon was the runner-up, but the Fuji was more than $100 less which saved me money for a lens hood, SDHC cards and a new bag. Very happy with this purchase.
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on September 1, 2016
I already had one of this model for years and wanted a second one. Aside from the very good quality of the camera, this one stands out above more recent models for at least a couple of reasons: 1) manual zoom on a non-dSLR "bridge" camera and 2) it uses rechargeable AA batteries rather than an obscure and costly proprietary battery. The idea that you can use readily available regular AA batteries in a pinch if you find yourself without a backup set of fully charged batteries enhances the reliability of the camera.
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