I have narrowed my search for a long zoom camera down to two cameras...

  • The Canon SX30IS
  • The Fuji HS 10, or the soon to be released HS 20

The Canon has a longer zoom (35 vs 30), articulating screen, and a rechargeable battery.

The Fuji has a CMOS sensor for better photos in low light without a flash, AA Batteries.

I would appreciate any insight anyone could provide as to the advantages of one camera over the other, I have done a lot of research and would love to hear from anyone with any experience with either of these cameras!

  • 3
    What do you intend to use the camera for? It's difficult to make recommendations without knowing how you're going to use it. – Rowland Shaw Jan 13 '11 at 15:34

The Fuji HS10 is the one I would recommend, at least until the HS20 is available. Honestly, it really seems to be an awesome model but, if you need a camera now, it's the HS10 you can get.

The mechanical lens on the Fuji cameras is a pleasure to use, it allows completely precise framing, quick and silent. The Canon's may go a bit longer but unless you are photographing birds it should not matter that much.

The rest of the features are not that significantly different but in general the Fuji has the advantage. You can see all the differences here. Mostly:

  • Slowest shutter-speed of 30s (vs 15s)
  • 10 FPS drive (vs 1.3 FPS)
  • 1080p video (vs 720p)

When I bought my SX10IS a couple years ago, I was really excited that I was getting a camera with AA batteries: a set of spare rechargeable batteries would be pretty cheap, and in a crunch I could buy another set at any corner convenience store. But once I started using it, I learned a little more:

  • AA batteries are heavier than proprietary Lithium-Ion battery packs.
  • AA batteries, especially rechargeables, have a shorter life than the proprietary battery packs.
  • NiMh (most rechargeables are NiMh) and Alkaline batteries don't do well (only last a few minutes) at cold temperatures (roughly freezing, or a few degrees above).
  • Lithium (i.e. work-well-in-cold-weather) AA batteries are expensive compared to NiMh or Alkalines.
  • One spare proprietary battery won't cost too much more than a charger and two sets of rechargeable batteries.
  • A set of AA batteries don't last for as many shots as a proprietary battery pack (rough guess: they last about 2/3 as long. I've never tried any sort of experiment, that's really just a gut feel).

So I know it seems wrong, but a proprietary LiIon battery pack is actually better than AA batteries (especially if you live somewhere that gets down to freezing temps in the winter).

(And on the Canon vs. Fuji front: I really enjoyed shooting with my SX10IS. I can only imagine that the SX30IS is an improvement over it. And if you're into hacking on your camera at all, CHDK will give you some added benefits, like scripting.)

  • On the other hand you will be able to find AA batteries pretty much anywhere, while it is not always possible to charge LiIon battery when you are on trip to remote area. – Sergey Matvienko Jan 18 '11 at 8:09

Significant advantages of Fuji HS10 over Canon SX30IS:

  • RAW images: If you spend time post processing your pics, this can be the deciding factor. Though not all image editors support fuji's RAW images, many do.

  • Zoom ring: Zooming manually through the lens ring is a pleasure and also does give more accurate zooming.

  • Better resolution HD videos

  • CMOS sensor: consume less power, have higher noise immunity and less lag than a CCD (SX30 has a CCD sensor)

  • Better continuous shooting: 10 fps vs 1.1 fps

  • Better ISO: 6400 vs 1600

  • DSLR like controls are easy to use and buttons like exposure/focus lock are well placed.

  • Fuji's EXR technology: http://www.fujifilmexr.com

Significant advantages of Canon SX30IS over FUJI HS10:

  • Better zoom: 35x vs 30x.

  • Better macro capability: 0cm vs 1cm

Personally I bought Fuji HS10 after researching between the two. Reason being that though both have advantages over the other, Fuji's benefits give it an edge over Canon. 30x is enough for any normal use case. We do not click moon shots everyday, do we? Also 1cm super macro is quite good. For serious macro photography you would anyways need an addon like that from Raynox(attachable to HS10). Here are a few pics I clicked with FUJI HS10 (note: they are post processed)



I bought two Fuji HS10 cameras solely for their video capabilities... the video quality @ 1080p is STUNNING, even in low light. I also use the high speed video feature a lot (this feature is much better on the HS10 then the HS20). This is my 4th fuji camera. This camera is the only true all-in-one out there... I mean come on... a 24mm to 720mm lens?!?!? Takes decent photos too but with video that looks this good why would I take stills?

After 6 months of ownership I have only a few complaints... no manual mode while taking videos, auto only (pretty dumb not to give even a WB control) and there is significant pincushin distortion at full zoom. Other then that... I love em'

The 24mm super wide lens is a two edge sword... I won't even consider buying another bridge camera in the future without this specification...


Better to go for HS20 EXR which will get best of HS10 with innovation from Fujifilm such as EXR processor which really works excellently under low light. Canon SX 30 IS is also good but it doesnt support RAW. And it will be costlier than HS20. The detailed features can be found at here.


give a thought about panasonic lumix fz-100 as well.. its beats canon sx30 anyday in photograpy and canon does not supports RAW

  • The Canon can support RAW photos using CHDK; you might want to update your answer to say why the Panasonic Lumix is better - is it faster to focus? less shutter lag? smaller? – Rowland Shaw Jan 13 '11 at 15:36
  • As much as I love CHDK, I have to say that my one experience with CHDK+RAW did not turn out very well. It may have been because my camera was already one generation old when I started using it, or because I run Linux and there's limited support for RAW on Linux, or because I don't care enough about post-processing (I don't even shoot RAW with my 30D) to spend enough time trying to make it work, but I was never able to load a single RAW image from my SX10IS+CHDK. YMMV of course, and if anyone's been successful with an SX30+CHDK+RAW, that would be good to hear. – user2910 Jan 14 '11 at 8:16

HS 10 Great camera for general purpose photography. From super macro to telephoto. The AA batteries, in my opinion are great. I use high quality, high capacity rechargebles, have several sets and a decent quick charger. I have not used at sub-zero temperatures so cannot comment. I bought the HS10 having had a Fuji S602 bridge camera for many years which also used AA cells and gave brilliant results. For my purposes much more practical than an SLR and a bag of lenses, not withstanding slight drop of quality.