By 14 September 2010 | Categories: news


Fujifilm officially launched the FinePix REAL 3D W3 in South Africa today at a function held in Johannesburg. It is the company’s second 3D camera after last year’s W1, the world’s first 3D camera.

One of the biggest benefits the new model offers over the previous version is the inclusion of 720p 3D movie capabilities. This allows one to not only capture photos but also video in 3D, while also recording stereo sound via the onboard microphone. 
Videos and images can be viewed in 3D on the camera’s 3.5” lenticular screen at the back, special photo frames or 3D televisions using an HDMI mini-cable (hi-speed type) 1.4 cable. FujiFilm should introduce a special 3D printer to South Africa later this year so that images can be printed out on special lenticular paper. (More after image)
The 10 megapixel camera is equipped with two 3x optical zoom lenses as well as two CCD sensors for capturing two images simultaneously to achieve the 3D effect. The 3D Processor within the camera has the ability to analyse the shooting data from the two lenses and sensors and combines these two images into one high resolution 3D image or movies. Images can then be viewed in 3D on the cameras 3.5” LCD panel. This is done without the need for stereoscopic glasses since the lenticular technology utilised by Fujifilm splits the captured images in two to be picked up by each eye separately in order to achieve the 3D effect.
The benefits of the double lenses and sensors are carried over when shooting 2D, since photographers can select to shoot both close-up and wide angle versions of a photo, or two alternative colour balances or have an image with two versions with high and low sensitivity. 
TechSmart had the opportunity to have a brief hands-on session with the W3. The camera is noticeably larger and heavier than regular compacts, explained by the fact that it is basically two cameras (two lenses and two sensors) in one. The 3D effect is achieved really well when viewing images on the LCD screen at the back, although the effect is only noticeable when viewing images horizontally and not when for example turning the screen vertically to view portrait pictures. Images and video displayed well on 3D televisions, although photos printed on lenticular paper did not impress.
The FinePix W3 3D camera will be available from October 2010 and comes with a recommended retail price of R5999.


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