Fuji Discovery 900 Zoom Plus – 1991

From the Fuji Photo Film Company, Limited, Tokyo.

Actually quite a sophisticated 35mm compact autofocus camera from the early 1990s – during the compact camera war period where each manufacturer was trying to cram as many features into as small a package as they could. In the case of this Fuji, it came pretty close to having everything except the compact part.

Which in the case of this camera, is a very good thing in our opinion. It has a wonderful feel to it – it has some heft (362 g without battery and film) and fits nicely into your grip. It’s plastic but with a host of motors and what not the weight goes up which helps to hold it steady when taking a picture.

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It was packaged in a descriptive and colorful box that included a roll of Fujicolor film, a lithium battery (which was still working after 24 years!), a padded strap and a series of 3 HG Creative Exposure cards for exposure compensation. The film expired in May 1994.

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We think it’s one of the better designed compact 35s of that era – beautiful lines and a quality fit and finishes. It was made in Japan – and it appears that it was also assembled there as well. The June issue of Popular Photography has it listed as $299.95 as the manufacturer’s suggested retail price! I believe that gives some clue as to the design that Fuji put into this nice update to their Discovery 900.

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The Discovery comes with a Fujinon 38-85mm power zoom lens (f/3.8 – 8.2) and uses a 3 zone multi-beam autofocus system. Focuses close-up to 29.5 inches and the AF focuses from .75 meter to infinity.

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The Fujinon lens consists of 7 components, 7 elements. The programmed electronic shutter operates from 1/8 to 1/250 second.

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The top view is simple and uncluttered. The HG card slot is in the center (where a hot shoe would be). It has a sequential self-timer and the power zoom buttons are on the far right. It also features drop-in film loading and uses DX coding with ISO 50, 100, 200, 400, 800, and 1600 DX-coded films.

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This camera was a presentation camera to the employees (?) of the plant – or maybe the plant only got one. It is in mint never used condition so I’m guessing it never took pictures of their cement pipes at the plant. Our first thought was to remove the plaque, but it is well designed and affixed properly so it’s best to leave it be. Besides, it helps to date the camera and that’s okay with us.

The little Pac Man looking symbol and slide lever opens and closes the lens cover and activates the camera. The landscape button on the left helps the AF system to fix a distant focus at infinity or at least takes an average focus from the scene. We love the centered viewfinder – it provides a nice bright view of the composition.

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The Fuji Discovery 900 Zoom Plus 35mm camera.

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The Fuji Discovery 90 Date – a smaller and less feature-packed cousin to the 900.

We think Fuji did well with this sophisticated camera and can’t wait for a field test! Soon!

Thanks for your visit.

Camera: Fujifilm FinePix S9900W

Chris

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9 thoughts on “Fuji Discovery 900 Zoom Plus – 1991

    1. I know right! This Fuji is super new and almost complete! The only things missing from the original set are those HG cards! I’m not sure exactly how they work but I’m very curious to actually use them.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I have this camera and am missing only the owner’s manual. Your post was a great refresher for me as I recently found the camera looking for something else. I purchased a new battery and some film and it seems to be in good working order but I am perplexed that it doesn’t show how many exposures are remaining after I take a photo. I honestly don’t remember if it used to do this. Any information or thoughts would be helpful. I couldn’t find the owner’s manual online. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey, Chris. Sorry about the delay! When I dropped the film in and closed it it made the appropriate whirring sound but there is no exposure number showing in the window on top. I’m using Kodak Ulramax 400 film with 24 exp. The flash button on top next to the flash icon works fine. Ditto the timer button as well as the icons for both, showing in the window when they are pushed. The smaller blue botton across from the center film icon does nothing when pushed and I don’t recall what that one’s purpose is. I’m hoping you do. Everything else shows appropriately in that window: zoom gradations when the camera is turned on and focused in or out. BTW, the date and time stamp (behind the dedication plate on your camera) is also working fine and I had no problem setting it. Is it possible the film didn’t load properly or maybe I used the wrong kind. Should I just continue to take pics until I count down from 24 and possibly waste the roll to see is it’s working or not? Any advice would be helpful. Also, I don’t have the instruction booklet so if you might know where I could buy one or find one online that would be helpful as well. THANKS!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi, Patrick!
      I’ve checked my Fuji Discovery 90 (which is similar) and my guess is that you need to adjust the length of the film leader a bit. It needs to fall within the “zone” that the camera would pick up the leader. I’m guessing that your camera just isn’t grabbing it. You should be able to hear and feel the film being extracted from the cassette and of course, the counter would move. Do not fully open the back – it should only open about 15 degrees or so. I think once you get the leader in the right spot (and it’s not curled) it should work unless that one motor has failed (which would be odd). I’ll look around to see if I have a spare booklet somewhere in my piles!
      Regards,
      Chris

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  3. You, Sir, are the MAN! Without giving you the gory details (2 butter knives with severed latex glove fingers stretched over the tips… don’t ask. I’m notorious for over thinking a simple solution!) I took your sterling words of wisdom and solved my problem (which is to say YOU solved my problem)! Twenty-four exp. showing in the window now. If you and your wife ever visit Ft. Lauderdale your first drinks are on me! Just one more thing: that tiny blue button between the flash and timer buttons continues to mock me. What is it’s purpose?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Glad it worked out! I believe it is the rewind button. I can’t remember if for some reason it’s a way to rewind the film before finishing the roll. Once again, sorry that I can’t find my camera and instruction booklet but looking at the top plate “reminds” me that that’s what it is. Either way, don’t press it until you’re ready.

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