Fuji has released an update to their W1 3D camera, the W3. Their new 3D camera sports a slightly sleeker interface, larger LCD screen and the capability of 720p video… in 3-D no less! As many of you know, I purchased a Fuji W1 a few months ago and I've been snapping 3D photos ever since. Full Info here.
Here's my take on the W3…
While the 720p capability is exciting, the quality of the 640×480 video that is produced by the W1 is fairly poor. While I'm excited to see the bigger number, I hope it also translates into a higher image quality in the end.
The biggest issue though, is the inability to access these images effectively. I'm not clear if Fuji has upgraded their software, but the current solution is completely unusable. So, you can shoot the 3D images but you can't actually use their software, on a Mac or PC, to really get access to those images or video.
The camera appears to be completely wired into the notion that you will always view your stills and video through a 3D-capable device. The only way to manually work with the images is to use a small freeware piece software (here) that nearly every company that deals with the Fuji camera links to. Given the money that Fuji has invested in the development of this camera, I find it fascinating that they have not invested a fraction, a very small fraction, of resources towards creating software that would allow users to fully utilize and enjoy what is otherwise a great camera.
Do I regret my purchase? I don't. I love taking 3D photos with my Fuji W1. I think it's fun, and I think that I will enjoy having them in the future when there are many other options and the process is much more mainstream. I still haven't figured out how to use the video so I don't do that as much as I thought I would… but shooting stills is rewarding.
On the bright side, the W3 is $100 less than the W1 with more features. As the only real camera that you can put in your pocket and easily shoot 3-D, if you're interested in this new cutting-edge technology, this is still a great camera to buy.
So what do you think?
Jump into our forums and let us know. Are you ready to dive into 3D? Is this the right camera for you? What features do you need to see?