Based on the body of Nikon's D200, which means it accepts a wide range of compatible lenses, the 12Mp Fujifilm S5 Pro is Fuji's only digital SLR camera.

The Fujifilm S5 Pro upgrades the S3 model – there was no S4 – and is again aimed squarely at those who specialise in portraits and landscapes.

The re-designed Super CCD SR Pro sensor at the Fujifilm S5 Pro's heart boasts unique properties. The honeycomb layout is split into six million larger 'S' diodes, which capture most of the light, and a further six million 'R' diodes, which capture 'bright area' information – for example, fine detail on an all-white dress that would be in danger of 'burning out'.

You can also control dynamic range with six incremental settings, plus there are shooting modes that vividly ape the colour-rich qualities of Fuji roll film.

Among the Fujifilm S5 Pro's effective improvements is a new filter to reduce image noise in low light without flash, with light sensitivity up to ISO3200, plus an internal processor that now delivers more life-like colours. Making sure your subject is always sharp, no matter where in the frame it is, there are 11 autofocus points, and, like most DSLRs, you can shoot RAW files alongside JPEGs. It's hard to shoot a duff shot.

The trade off for the Fujifilm S5 Pro's many professional features is a chunky body and brick-like weight, plus a highish price tag (although there are good deals to be done online). So is it worth the money?

NEXT PAGE: the Fujifilm S5 Pro in use, photo quality and our expert review >>

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Based on the body of Nikon's D200, which means it accepts a wide range of compatible lenses, the 12Mp Fujifilm S5 Pro is Fuji's only digital SLR camera.

We used an AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G IF ED lens. Pictures shot at ISO3200 deliver results comparable to those normally seen at the lower ISO800 setting on competing brands, which is a real plus, even if the lens itself was not the sharpest and caused some barrel distortion at maximum wide angle. This is nitpicking though, as the Fuji chip can capture an impressive amount of detail and can deliver rich colours.

Metering is spot on, resulting in evenly exposed images, while battery life is good. The Fujifilm S5 Pro maintained highlight detail in our portrait test shot the best of all those we've tested recently, while delivering accurate colours and a good degree of crispness. Our close up shot at ISO1600 was also impressively free of image noise and similarly sharp.

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Fujifilm S5 Pro: Specs

  • 12.3Mp (S 6.17Mp, R 6.17Mp)
  • CCD SR Pro Technology
  • metal alloy frame with password protected feature lockouts
  • Nikon F-mount compatibility
  • dual cycle noise reduction algorithms for pristine pictures at 3200 ISO (ISO range from 100 – 3200)
  • Dynamic Range settings from 100% to 400%
  • simultaneous RAW + Jpeg shooting
  • i-TTL flash control
  • Li-Ion rechargeable battery
  • CF Card and Microdrive compatible
  • 12.3Mp (S 6.17Mp, R 6.17Mp)
  • CCD SR Pro Technology
  • metal alloy frame with password protected feature lockouts
  • Nikon F-mount compatibility
  • dual cycle noise reduction algorithms for pristine pictures at 3200 ISO (ISO range from 100 – 3200)
  • Dynamic Range settings from 100% to 400%
  • simultaneous RAW + Jpeg shooting
  • i-TTL flash control
  • Li-Ion rechargeable battery
  • CF Card and Microdrive compatible

OUR VERDICT

In short, if you're not stuck firmly in the Canon or Nikon user camp, the Fujifilm S5 Pro is a reliable digital workhorse of a camera and comes highly recommended.

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