PROS / This camera is rated to withstand a drop from 5.8 feet.
CONS / The picture quality is average.
VERDICT / This camera has good underwater and shockproof ratings, but the image quality is average.
The FujiFilm FinePix XP80 is a solid underwater camera that takes respectable pictures and is rugged enough to endure an adventure. This waterproof camera is rated to survive 50 feet underwater as well as drops from 5.8 feet. These ratings are considered on the upper end of durability.
Although the camera can endure a lot, it doesn't feel rugged. The entire casing is hard, smooth plastic. The casing doesn’t have any metal, rubber or anything that would seem to protect it from being dropped. However, FujiFilm claims it is quite a rugged device. The battery compartment is sealed by a dial mechanism. To unlock the compartment, you have to press the button in the center as you turn the dial. It is not a bad design, but other locking mechanisms such as switches are more convenient.
We tested each camera underwater by capturing photos of our test scene located at the bottom of a pool. The underwater pictures that the FujiFilm underwater camera produced were average. The waterproof camera rendered the water a nice, soft blue, making the overall picture look bright. But the floral test subject of the image looks dull. The colors lack vibrancy and deep color saturation. The image isn't as sharp as the best waterproof cameras. You can see in the groupings of bright colors in the scene that there isn't much definition. The violet leaves almost blend with white accents of the water. Overall, there was nothing special about the underwater images the FinePix X80 produced.
The dry-land images were average as well. The color saturation in the test scene was good, but the blues rendered more purple. The problem that mostly docked the dry-land testing was the image sharpness. When you zoom in, the different colored boxes have really jagged edges. The bottom of the box is also seems to have a dark outline that shouldn’t be there. There is some noticeable grain, but it's not as bad as some lower-ranked cameras.
The camera menu is easy to navigate. When you press the menu button on the back of the camera, a simple and straightforward menu pops on the 2.7-inch display. It is a single list with straightforward terminology. There aren't multiple menus where certain camera parameters are hidden. Within a few minutes of using the camera, we were able to find everything we needed within the menus.
The FujiFilm underwater camera can only take 210 pictures on a single charge. That is fewer than any camera in our lineup. The best waterproof camera can take up to 380 pictures on a single charge. The last thing you want is for your camera to run out of power when you are out on an adventure.
The image sensor has a maximum resolution of 16 megapixels, average for our lineup. The ISO ranges from 100 to 6400 for taking photographs in light and dark environments, and the shutter speed ranges from 1/4th of a second to 1/2000 – standard as far as shutter speeds are concerned.
The FujiFilm FinePix XP80 isn't the greatest underwater camera in our comparison, but it has its definite upsides. The camera is rated to go down 50 feet underwater without damage. It is also rated to withstand a fall from 5.8 feet – both of which are competitive for our lineup. The image quality is average at best. Although there are other cameras in our lineup that take better pictures, the XP80 makes for a good secondary camera to take on adventures.