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Fujifilm FinePix X100 Digital Camera Review

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Digital Camera Review - The new Fujifilm FinePix X100 is put through a full review to find out how this camera performs in use.

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Category : Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera
Product : Fujifilm X100
Price : £207
Rating :
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Features
Handling
Performance
Verdict
Specification
Update Q&A


Fujifilm FinePix X100 Front

The Fujifilm FinePix X100 is the newest entry into the mirrorless fixed lens category, and adds an entirely unique feature of not only an optical viewfinder, but a hybrid optical viewfinder with electronic overlay, or alternatively you can just use the electronic viewfinder. 

Fujifilm FinePix X100

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Features

The Fujifilm FinePix X100 joins a limited selection of compact cameras with a fixed lens, and APS-C (DSLR) sized sensor. This enables, in theory, image quality that should equal Digital SLRs, but without the added size and potential expense of having to buy and carry an SLR lens with you. 

Fujifilm FinePix X100
The switch on the left lets you switch between MF, AF-Single, and AF-Continuous

The limited number of alternatives in this area have a number of noticeable strengths and weaknesses, for example the Leica X1 is one of the more compact cameras, but has a high price and sluggish performance. The Sigma DP series has high image quality, but again is known for slow performance. The challenge for Fujifilm is to introduce a camera in this area with both the image quality and speed of a Digital SLR, which is what, rightly or wrongly, most users of these cameras are expecting.

Fujifilm FinePix X100
The back of the camera features: Diopter adjustment control, Viewfinder window, Eye sensor, Playback / AE / Playback Zoom / AF / Playback Zoom out / View mode buttons, 2.8inch LCD monitor, Command control, AFL/AEL focus lock / exposure button, indicator lamp, Menu / OK button, Command dial, Display / Back button, RAW button.

Key Features
  • Magnesium Alloy Body, synthetic leather like finish, metal dials
  • Hybrid Optical / Electronic Viewfinder
  • 12.3 megapixel APS-C size CMOS sensor, EXR processor (not an EXR sensor)
  • Prime f/2.0 f=23mm, equivalent to 35mm on a 35mm camera, with Neutral Density Filter
  • ISO100 - ISO12800
  • HD Video 1280x720 at 24fps, with stereo sound
  • Continuous shooting: 5fps at 12mp
  • 2.8in screen with 460k dots
  • Dynamic Range mode(s) 100%, 200%, 400%
  • 12-bit RAW files, Built in RAW development
  • AF-S, AF-C, Manual Focus modes
  • 10cm Macro mode
  • Motion Panorama: 180° Vertical 7680 x 2160, Horizontal 7680 x 1440, 120° Vertical 5120 x 2160, Horizontal 5120 x 1440
  • Film simulation: Velvia, Provia (Standard), Astia, Monochrome, with Red/Yellow/Green filters, Sepia
  • Built in ND filter (equivalent f-stop reduction of 3)
  • Electronic level

Fujifilm FinePix X100
The top of the camera features (from left to right): Hot-shoe, Shutter speed dial, ON/OFF switch, Shutter button, Exposure compensation dial, Fn (Function) button. The function button can be customised, however the default setting is to change ISO. Here you can also see the aperture ring on the lens with settings from Auto, f/16 to f/2, and in front of that is the manual focus ring. The manual focus ring direction can be changed in menu, and is an electronic ring (drive-by-wire) rather than a physical focusing ring.

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Handling


Fujifilm FinePix X100
The front of the camera, with provided magnesium lens cap. The lens cap does not have a strap loop so will need storing in pocket or camera bag. The inside of the lens cap is padded to avoid damaging the camera. The red switch is the viewfinder selector, you use this to switch between optical / optical and electronic, and electronic viewfinder modes. Next to it is the microphone (R), and the focus assist lamp. Above the lens is the flash, and next to this is the microphone (L), and finally the viewfinder (in optical mode).

Optical / Hybrid / Electronic Viewfinder: You can use the camera's optical viewfinder on its own, with an electronic overlay, or alternatively purely as an electronic viewfinder, as shown below. The camera will automatically switch from the rear screen to the viewfinder thanks to the eye-sensor detecting your eye when next to the viewfinder. (These images were taken directly through the viewfinder, click to enlarge). 

Optical viewfinder Optical Hybrid Viewfinder Electronic Viewfinder
Optical only Optical Hybrid + Electronic Overlay Electronic Viewfinder (Custom is also available)

Rear screen: The rear screen can be used as an information display much like a Digital SLR, or used as a live viewfinder, as shown below. The live view rear screen can be customised to show an electronic level, focusing distance and more information. A live histogram is also available, as well as a 9 line grid (shown), 24 line grid or HD 16:9 grid lines.

Information Screen Normal rear screen Custom view screen
Information rear screen Normal rear screen Custom rear screen

Menus: The menus are split into three main areas: Shooting (colour coded red), Setup (colour coded blue), and Playback (colour coded green). There are four screens of shooting options, six screens of setup options, and three screens of playback options. The menu highlight colour can be changed.

Shooting Menu Setup menu Playback menu
Shooting menu Setup menu Playback menu

Playback views: There are four main views available in playback, accessible by pressing the DISP / BACK button. The third screen shown below is accessed by moving the command control.

Playback view Playback detail Playback text
Playback (Information) Detailed Information View Text (Command control)

The basic playback view, above left, shows the shutter speed, aperture, ISO, shooting mode (RAW/JPEG), and DR setting. The information can be switched off so you just see the photo, and you can also rate your favourite photos out of 5 stars. Detailed information, in the middle above, shows further information and a histogram, and for even more information you use the command control. Pressing the control in switches the display to full zoom so you can quickly check focus.

Fujifilm FinePix X100
The bottom of the camera features a speaker, central tripod mount, and battery / memory card cover. The battery is a "minimum 1700mAh" / "typical 1800mAh" rated battery. The position of the tripod mount means that it is difficult or impossible (depending on the size of your tripod) to open the memory compartment while the camera is on a tripod.

Battery Life: According to CIPA / Fujifilm testing the battery life is rated at 300 shots. The battery charging time is 210 minutes / 3.5 hours. Under normal use we were able to shoot 240 shots (file type set to JPEG+RAW) before the battery went flat. 

Fujifilm FinePix X100
The side features a covered HDMI / USB connection. The command dial where your thumb rests is used in playback to show extra photo information, and in photo mode can be used to magnify the centre of the frame when using manual focus.

Aperture blades f/11 Focus switch
Aperture blades f/11 Side focus switch MF/AF-S/AF-C

Speed - In our tests we took on average 6 or more shots to test the speed of the camera, and calculate the averages. We also compared it to some of the most recent compact and DSLR cameras available, the Nikon D3100, and Panasonic Lumix LX5, both offer good performance in their respective classes. The results can be seen below.

Fujifilm rate the start up speed as: "Approx. 2.2 sec. (Approx 0.7 sec at QUICK START mode)* evaluated by FUJIFILM method" so it will be interesting to see if we get the same figures.
 
  Fuji X100 Panasonic LX5 Nikon D3100
Shutter Reponse (seconds) 0.0* <0.1 0.05
Wide - Focus and Shutter Response Average 0.35 0.3 0.4
Full zoom - Focus and Shutter Response Average N/A 0.3 0.45
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo 3.7 / 2.0** 1.8 0.4
Shot to Shot (without flash) 1.1 0.9* (2 shots) 0.4 (3 shots)
Shot to Shot with Flash 1.1 1.6* (2 shots) 1.2 (3 shots)
Continuous Shooting (at full resolution) 5fps (8 shots)^ 2.5fps (3 shots) 3fps (3 shots)

Testing notes: Fastest in bold. Nikon D3100, and Panasonic Lumix LX5 tested with central focusing point, RAW+JPEG, and continuous shot times were only counted at their fastest setting, with the number of shots before slow down shown in brackets. Page 22 of the manual says that switching OVF Power Save mode ON will "approximately double the number of photographs that can be taken" however, it also "increases the time required for auto-focus to about 0.4 seconds, compared to about 0.2 seconds when OFF". Quick start mode can also drain the battery life.

^ 10 shots in JPEG, 8 shots as RAW+JPEG
* Not a typo! As near as instant as possible.
** Normal mode / Quick Start Mode switched ON. I have not yet been able to re-create Fuji's rapid startup speed, although I suspect theirs may involve just switching the camera on, and not taking the photo. Switching quick start mode on reduces the battery life of the camera.

Fujifilm X100 Limited Edition Black
The Fujifilm X100 is also available as a Special Limited Edition Black version.

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Performance

View our sample photos - you can click to view full size samples.

Sample Photo - Tree Sample photo - shopping centre
Sample Photo - Tree
ISO200, 1/300, f/4.5
Sample Photo - Worksop Shopping Street
ISO200, 1/300, f/4.5
Trees Trees f8
Sample Photo - Trees and sky
ISO400, 1/320, f/4.5
Trees
ISO400, 1/110, f/8
 

Dynamic Range: The dynamic range of the camera can be extended by using the Dynamic Range modes, this can be set to Auto, DR100, DR200 or DR400. Alternatively you can use dynamic range bracketing and the camera will take three shots in quick succession. Examples are shown below, click to enlarge.

DR100 - Shooting into the Sun DR200 - Shooting into the Sun DR400 - Shooting into the Sun
DR100 - Shooting into the Sun
ISO800, 1/1300, f/16
DR200 - Shooting into the Sun
ISO800, 1/1300, f/16
DR400 - Shooting into the Sun
ISO800, 1/1300, f/16

The camera copes surprisingly well, especially considering the camera is shooting directly into the Sun. The Dynamic range mode, particularly DR200 and DR400, show excellent detail in the shadow areas, and copes exceptionally well with the bright Sun. More example shots are shown below.

DR100 DR200 DR400
DR100
ISO800, 1/220, f/4.5
DR200
ISO800, 1/220, f/4.5
DR400
ISO800, 1/220, f/4.5

The dynamic range mode helps retain detail in bright or dark areas, and is particularly noticeable in bright skies or dark shadows in these photos.

ISO and Noise Performance
Fujifilm FinePix X100 ISO speed test: Click on the thumbnails, or text for larger images.

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Noise Test Fujifilm FinePix X100 Noise Test Fujifilm FinePix X100 Noise Test
ISO100 (JPEG only) ISO200 - ISO250 -ISO320 ISO400 - ISO500 - ISO640
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Noise Test Fujifilm FinePix X100 Noise Test Fujifilm FinePix X100 Noise Test
IS0800 - ISO1000 - ISO1250 ISO1600 - ISO2000 - ISO2500 ISO3200 - ISO4000 - ISO5000
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Noise Test Fujifilm FinePix X100 Noise Test  
ISO6400 ISO12800 (JPEG only)  

Noise: The camera has five options for noise reduction: Standard (default setting), High, Medium-High, Medium-Low, and Low. We tested on the default setting. Noise performance is excellent - the camera produces excellent low noise images up to and beyond ISO3200 / ISO6400 with usable results. The results at the lower ISO settings are extremely clean with extremely low levels of noise, even in the dark areas of images.

Sample photo - indoors - flash on Sample photo - outside
Inside, Flash On
ISO200, 1/30, f/2
Outside, Flash On
ISO200, 1/240, f/4
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Macro Nightshot f2.8
Sample Photo - Macro
ISO800, 1/340, f/5, DR100, Flash off
Nightshot
ISO6400, 1/30, f/2.8, Handheld

Some of the film effect / creative modes: Click to view full size sample images.

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Standard Velvia
Standard (Provia) Velvia
Astia Soft Sepia Film
Astia / Soft Sepia
Black and White plus Yellow Filter Black and White plus Red Filter
Black and White plus Yellow Filter Black and White plus Red Filter
Black and White plus Green Filter Black and White
Black and White plus Green Filter Black and White

White Balance

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Auto White Balance Fujifilm FinePix X100 Incandescent White Balance
Auto White Balance - Incandescent Lighting
 
Preset Incandescent WB - Incandescent Light
 
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Auto White Balance Fujifilm FinePix X100 Fluorescent White Balance
Auto White Balance - Fluorescent Light
 
Fluorescent White Balance - Fluorescent Light
 

Auto white balance does an excellent job under fluorescent lighting. Results are good under incandescent lighting, however results are slightly better using a preset. For optimum results when auto white balance doesn't produce the results expected, custom white balance is recommended.

Macro Performance: The camera will focus with subjects 10cm away from the front of the lens in macro mode. The optical / electronic overlay viewfinder is not available when using the macro mode, just optical only or electronic only. The minimum focusing distance when not in macro mode is 80cm, which could cause some problems when you simply want to take a close-range photo, without necessarily thinking you're taking "Macro" photos. However you can focus closer when you switch to the electronic viewfinder or live view, or when using manual focus, it's just unfortunate that the Fujifilm specifications don't mention this closer focusing distance. We tested the camera using manual focus, automatic white balance, and went from f/2 to f/16 to show the lens stopped down, this should demonstrate sharpness and background blur / bokeh of the camera.

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Macro Fujifilm FinePix X100 Macro
ISO1600, f/2, 1/640, Manual Focus ISO1600, f/2.8, 1/320, Manual Focus
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Macro Fujifilm FinePix X100 Macro
ISO1600, f/4, 1/170, Manual Focus ISO1600, f/5.6, 1/80, Manual Focus
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Macro Fujifilm FinePix X100 Macro
ISO1600, f/8, 1/40, Manual Focus ISO1600, f/11, 1/20, Manual Focus
Fujifilm FinePix X100 Macro  
ISO1600, f/16, 1/10, Manual Focus  

Additional X100 Sample Photos: See how the Fuji Finepix X100 compares with the Olympus PEN E-P2
Additional X100 Landscape Photos: Fujifilm FinePix X100 samples at different aperture settings

Video Mode
The Fujifilm FinePix X100 has an HD 720p video mode that records at 24fps with stereo sound. You can use continuous focusing when recording, however manual focus is not available. When switching to the video mode, your options become more limited, and you can't switch the camera to macro mode, which makes focusing on close subjects much more difficult (but not impossible). Focus, Exposure, and White balance are adjusted automatically throughout recording. You can't change the aperture while recording but can set it before recording. You can't change ISO before or during. The maximum video length is 10 minutes, and class 4 or above memory cards are recommended.

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Sample Video.

Value for Money
The Fujifilm FinePix X100 should be available for £999 or less from some retailers, and is more expensive than the Sony NEX / Olympus PEN / Panasonic Micro Four Thirds and Samsung NX series of mirrorless / interchangeable lens cameras, and also more expensive than the Sigma and Ricoh series of large sensor cameras.

However, it is cheaper than the Leica X1, and perhaps more importantly, the X100 is the only camera to feature a built in optical and electronic viewfinder. With the cameras mentioned previously you can attach an optical viewfinder that will work with a set lens, or add an electronic viewfinder if available (for example, this is currently available for the Micro Four Thirds cameras).

The X100 is more expensive than most entry level Digital SLRs as well, although the Fujifilm is definitely much smaller than all current Digital SLRs, and an f/2 aperture lens is very rarely included as a kit lens (if ever). With the unique blend of features it means it's very much up to you personally whether the features this camera has are something that you would be willing to pay £999 for. 

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Verdict

The Fujifilm FinePix X100 is a unique camera in an increasingly competitive category. For a long time the difference in image quality between compact cameras with small sensors, and Digital SLRs with much larger sensors has been well known. The Fujifilm FinePix X100 aims to bring the image quality of a large sensor to a smaller camera, and should also bring the speed of DSLRs with it. Thankfully Fujifilm has delivered both excellent image quality with extremely low noise levels, as well as high speed performance, such as 5fps shooting, quick focusing, and extremely quick shutter response. 

It scores extremely well for image quality performance, only missing top marks for the lack of closer focusing distance, 80cm default is quite limiting when using the OVF, however switch to EVF and the camera will focus much closer without necessarily having to switch to macro mode. Also the lack of manual focusing during video recording is disappointing. If these issues could possibly be resolved with a firmware update it would definitely score 10/10 for performance. 

The camera's handling is very good, only losing points due to the lower than expected battery life. Considering the large 1800mAh battery, I would have expected longer battery life, than the CIPA rating of 300 shots. The silent shutter and the ease of use of the menus, viewing systems and controls make it an enjoyable camera to use, and it doesn't take long to learn the camera. If you are in the market for DSLR quality images, and a much smaller body, with an optical and electronic viewfinder then the Fujifilm FinePix X100 fills the niche very nicely.

If you have any feedback or want to ask any questions about the X100, please leave a comment in the forum.

The Fujifilm FinePix X100 is a unique camera with excellent image quality and an unprecedented Hybrid optical viewfinder with electronic overlay.

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Pros:
Extremely quiet shutter
Very low noise at all ISO settings
Hybrid Optical / Electronic viewfinder - world's first
Excellent image quality and colour
Excellent build quality

Fujifilm FinePix X100 Cons:
Fixed focal length lens (35mm equivalent)
Limited close-up focusing of 80cm (when using OVF)
High price compared to competition

FEATURES
HANDLING
PERFORMANCE
VALUE
OVERALL

Fujifilm FinePix X100: Specification


Price £999
Contact www.fujifilm.co.uk or the dedicated X100 site: www.finepix-x100.com
Lens f/2.0 - f/16, f=23mm, equivalent to 35mm on a 35mm camera
Resolution 12.3 million pixels
Sensor size 23.6mm×15.8mm
Sensor type APS-C CMOS with primary colour filter
Max. Image size 12mp 4288×2848
Aspect ratios L 3:2 4288×2848, 16:9 4288×2416
M 3:2 3072×2048, 16:9 3072×1728
S 3:2 2176×1448, 16:9 1920×1080
Monitor 2.8-inch, approx. 460,000dots, TFT color LCD monitor (Approx. 100% coverage), 
Viewfinder Hybrid Optical: with electronic bright frame display, approx. 90% coverage
Electronic: 0.47-in., approx. 1,440,000-dots LCD viewfinder, approx. 100% coverage
Shutter speed (P mode) 1/4 sec. to 1/4000* sec., (All other modes) 30 sec. to 1/4000* sec. Bulb (max. 60min.) *1/4000sec at F8 or smaller aperture
Focusing system TTL contrast AF, AF assist illuminator available
Focusing modes Single AF / Continuous AF/MF Distance Indicator
Focus distance Normal: Approx. 80cm / 2.6 ft. to infinity, Macro: Approx.10cm - 2.0m / 3.9 in.- 6.6 in
File types JPEG (Exif Ver 2.3 *2), RAW (RAF format), RAW+JPEG, H.264 MOV with Stereo sound
ISO sensitivity ISO 200 - 6400, Extended output sensitivity equivalent ISO 100 or 12800
Metering modes TTL 256-zones metering, Multi / Spot / Average
Exposure compensation AE Bracketing (±1/3EV, ±2/3EV, ±1EV), Film Simulation Bracketing (PROVIA / Standard, Velvia / Vivid, ASTIA / Soft), Dynamic Range Bracketing (100%, 200%, 400%), ISO sensitivity Bracketing (±1/3EV, ±2/3EV, ±1EV)
Continuous Up to 10 /JPEG, Up to 8 /RAW or RAW+JPEG, 5 / 3 fps selectable
Image stabilisation No
Movie mode HD: 1280 x 720 pixels (24frames / sec.) with stereo sound, Individual movies can not exceed 10 minutes in length.
Media type Internal memory (Approx. 20MB), SD memory card / SDHC memory card / SDXC(UHS-I) memory card
Interface Hi-Speed USB 2.0, Mini HDMI Out
Power NP-95 Li-ion battery (included), CIPA rating: 300 shots
Box Contents FujX100 Camera, Li-ion battery NP-95, Battery charger BC-65N, Shoulder strap, USB cable for the FinePix X100, Lens cap, Metal strap clip, Protective cover, Clip attaching tool, CD-ROM (Viewer software, RAW File Converter etc., Printed owner's manual (123 pages)
Size 126.5 (W) mm x 74.4 (H) mm x 53.9 (D) mm
Weight Approx. 445g / 15.7 oz. (including battery and memory card)

The Fujifilm FinePix X100 costs £999 and is available from Warehouse Express here: Warehouse Express

Update 07/04/2011:

We spoke to Fujifilm about the X100 focusing and movie options based on your feedback and questions, and got the following information. If you have any more questions you'd like to put to Fujifilm about the X100 please ask in the forum.

Question 1: Do you have any feedback or thoughts on the focusing distance issues when using the OVF / OVF viewfinder as mentioned in the review? Will this be updated or addressed with a firmware update?


- When using OVF in close distance, the camera usually needs to have a parallax correction. Especially if the distance is under 80cm, huge parallax correction would be needed and actual image area in OVF would move to the right and lower side. Also, the position of focus target should be moved in response to the volume of parallax correction. But our development team thought this would make it confusing for users because the focus target point move depends on focus distance. As you pointed out in the review, when using EVF or LCD screen, the camera can focus closer than using OVF without switching to macro mode. Therefore, we decided to limit the focus distance to 80 cm in OVF.

- Regarding the specification sheet, actually we haven't mentioned the focus distance difference between OVF and EVF. In the camera manual, we just explained that the focus distance of OVF is limited to 80cm, but don't mention about the focus distance in EVF. This is because we recommend to use macro mode when taking closer photo. When user push the macro mode button, the viewfinder is automatically changed to EVF/LCD mode and user don't need to change OVF to EVF manually in macro mode.

Question 2: Are there any plans to add more creativity to the video mode for example allowing the adjustment of aperture, or manual focusing?


- When we developed this camera, it was important to focus on the core functions as part of it's key concept. Actually we cut off a lot of 'nice-to-have' functions so that the advanced camera user could control the camera quickly as they require. But if customers would really need some function, we would consider upgrading the firmware if possible. At the moment, we think the chance to use manual focus and to change the aperture in video mode is not so high. If you have an idea about how user could use these function and what situation is appropriate for these functions, please let us know. We will discuss with the head-office development team for the possibility.

If you have any more questions you'd like to put to Fujifilm about the X100 please ask in the forum.

Explore More

Photographs taken using the Fujifilm X100

MilesasleepThrough The WoodsLowther CastleLowther WoodswindowUntitledChristmas ShoppingAutumn SplendourColoursPizza BoyAutumn LeavesTo The HouseLate Autumn
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Comments


User_Removed 5 4.6k 1 Scotland
16 Mar 2011 5:08PM
I think that the head and shoulders shots of the young lady illustrate the stupidity of putting a 23mm fixed lens (equivalent to 35mm on a 35mm camera) in a camera with a CMOS sensor. The "natural" size would be about 30-35mm (equivalent to 50mm on a 35mm camera).

I am sure that the girl's nose is not as huge at it appears in the photographs and the perspective distortion from such a short-focus lens must really make her feel a bit peeved.

How did Fuji make such a gross error?

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landscapepics 4 15 3 United Kingdom
16 Mar 2011 11:16PM
LeftForum makes a valid point - a camera with a single, non-interchangeable lens does have limitations. In no way can such a camera serve all purposes. For my own likely uses, a 35mm lens would be a reasonable choice, for taking landscapes when walking or cycling and not wanting to carry a bigger camera. Certainly a 50mm lens would provide less distortion in a portrait but even then it's not an ideal portrait lens.

My current digital camera is a Leica Digilux 2 which shares some of the features of the X100 - manual controls for aperture, shutter speed, and focus, and a good max aperture (f2-2.4). But it's about six years old, 4.9mp, and limited to ISO400, with only ISO100 providing noise-free images. The possible attraction of the X100 for me is the high ISO - the 6400 shots look great to me, better than ISO400 on my Leica.

So I have to decide whether to foresake the excellent 28-90 zoom on the Leica for the high ISO, higher megapixel count, bigger sensor, and a few years more reliability with a newer Fuji.

I'm very tempted, just waiting for the price to drop ...
tireland 12 5 United Kingdom
17 Mar 2011 10:21AM
Had chance to handle one of these at the recent Focus show at the NEC, first impressions were very favorable. I have been looking for a camera that I can use for candid street photography where the DSLR is just too bulky and obtrusive. Recently bought a Nikon P7000 for street photography and have to say have not been impressed - think the Fuji X100 would be a much better bet. The design of the X100 that takes after the old rangefinder models that were so good for this type of photography is great step forward. As other commentators have said there are some areas were perhaps the camera is not ideal - the 35mm equiv lens perhaps although personally I don't see this as too much of a problem, having interchangeable lenses would perhaps be an improvement - I think we have all got too reliant on zoom lenses these days and have lost sight of the image quality you get from a prime lens.

Will definitely get hold of one of these - see the price has already dropped by £100 from some retailers ...
Pete e2
13 18.7k 96 England
17 Mar 2011 11:38AM
liking the almost circular highlights from the aperture Smile
You state in the review that "The minimum focusing distance when not in macro mode is 80cm".

My understanding is that this limit is only when using the OVF, due, I believe, to parallax error; switch to EVF or the LCD and the minimum focussing distance is around 35cm without using macro.
joshwa e2
4 710 United Kingdom
17 Mar 2011 10:22PM
^ You're right, but the manual and more specifically the specifications say the minimum focusing distance is 80cm, so I think it would be useful if Fujifilm corrected or clarified the information.

I've updated the review to mention the added information, thanks Smile
18 Mar 2011 1:44AM
The f2 and f2.8 macro shots of the watch do not look good. The f2 shot is especially hazy. Why do you think that is?

Jeff
18 Mar 2011 5:29PM
Joshua, how would you rate that lens?
Consulo 10 815 10 Scotland
18 Mar 2011 7:43PM
If money were no object, that's probably be the compact for me. The quality looks superb, and I'm very impressed at the noise control.

*sigh*
davey_griffo 5 213 165 England
19 Mar 2011 8:30AM
The retro look is absolutely spot on. What a fabulous looking camera. Until you turn it over & look at the back, you could almost be looking at a vintage camera.

The noise handling is extremely impressive. I'd use the 12,800 setting without a worry. Even Nikon (current king of high ISO) would be challenged to match it.

But that price...OUCH!!

For most people, you're looking at a second, compact camera, to slip into a pocket when you can't be bothered with the SLR kit. But at that price, it's around twice what I paid for my main camera (admittedly not top of the range), & hard to justify (even harder to pay for).
Chaitanya 5 14 1 India
19 Mar 2011 3:17PM
Will wait for the price of this camera to drop a little. I just bought a D7000 and X100 would be great for landscapes.
19 Mar 2011 9:27PM

Quote:The f2 and f2.8 macro shots of the watch do not look good. The f2 shot is especially hazy. Why do you think that is?

I got an answer to my question in another forum. Someone posted the following quote from the X100 website:

"However, when shooting macro shots with an open aperture in the neighborhood of F2, spherical aberration tends to occur. It is therefore recommended that an aperture value of F4 is selected for macro applications."

That seems like a credible explanation to me.

Jeff
Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
21 Mar 2011 1:02AM

Quote:I am sure that the girl's nose is not as huge at it appears in the photographs and the perspective distortion from such a short-focus lens must really make her feel a bit peeved.

How did Fuji make such a gross error?



Erra ?

Same would happen with my 35mm fixed lens film range finder if i got that close Smile
21 Mar 2011 11:49AM
I think he's referring to putting a 35mm lens on the cam Paul, which makes it not very usable for portraiture (allthough it should be great for environmental portraits Smile ), because of the distortion. Think he's saying that - as all 35mm lenses show too much distortion for portraits, it was a mistake to fit the camera with a (fix) 35mm lens. But can't say I agree with it. So yes, for portraiture it has limitations. It's probably not made with portraiture in mind. Put a fix 50mm on it, and you're limited for landscape, street, environmental portraits,...
And this lens is great for portraiting people with really tiny noses Smile
Pete e2
13 18.7k 96 England
22 Mar 2011 10:26PM
We've just added a video of the focusing in macro mode here Fujifilm Finepix X100 vs Olympus E-P2
23 Mar 2011 10:40AM
I think the X100 could be an excellent street shoot and landscape camera, with limitations, however, I would want a road test before forking out £999.
tron 4
25 Mar 2011 2:26PM
Such a good sensor for a compact camera but no interchangable lenses? Very clever! I'll keep looking at it but certainly not buy it...
SLRist 3
29 Mar 2011 11:06PM
I think you're missing the point - for one thing, this is a street shooter's camera, not a head and shoulders portrait camera. It's designed to photograph people in their surroundings, and for that 35mm is the perfect focal length. If you can only have one lens, it's always better to have a wider angle of view - it gives you far more options. A 50mm equivalent would be hopeless for architecture and landscape shots.

And another thing - this is designed to be a compact camera. As soon as you start adding lens mounts, it will get as large and unwieldy as that abomination the Sony NEX-5. If you want changeable lenses, I suggest you buy that instead, but good luck fitting it in your jacket pocket. Fuji had to move the lens into the body of the camera to keep it this compact and still allow an f2.0 aperture, and I'm jolly glad they did.
guybblue 3 1
9 Apr 2011 10:03AM

Quote:The f2 and f2.8 macro shots of the watch do not look good. The f2 shot is especially hazy. Why do you think that is?
I got an answer to my question in another forum. Someone posted the following quote from the X100 website:

"However, when shooting macro shots with an open aperture in the neighborhood of F2, spherical aberration tends to occur. It is therefore recommended that an aperture value of F4 is selected for macro applications."

That seems like a credible explanation to me.

Jeff



That's a relief to hear. I too was a bit taken aback by the f2 and f2.8 shots, especially as it's at f2 that I see myself mainly using this camera. (My Leica lenses hardly ever come off maximum aperture.) The built-in ND filter is pretty much an open declaration that wide open is where you want to be!

Does anyone have, or know of, any shots demonstrating the X100 across its aperture range with a NON-macro subject? Might that be something that could be added to this review? Fuji have a couple of f2 shots on their website but they're of very soft, furry cats, so you can't really tell whether the lens is also soft and furry...!

A similar set of test shots to the macro set, but focused at 80cms or thereabouts, would be very useful indeed.

FWIW, I downloaded the macro JPEGs to see whether they would sharpen up at all. A little light sharpening in Lightroom did make quite a nice difference, though obviously not to the quality of the f5.6 shots.
10 Apr 2011 8:22PM
Thanks a lot for the review. I have had this camera for less than two weeks and am already convinced it's a game changer. I am documenting journey with the X100 at www.x100photo.co.uk

Thanks,
MarkB
14 Apr 2011 10:53AM
yes I am the first customer in France for this wonderful device!
is mine I have just been delivered! (Ordered on the internet) and I can share my impressions =
Wawh-how fast! it looks like a Leica M .... It comes in a stylish package as the Leica x1-an impression of solidity, of boutons/bagues- al'ancienne, which remain in place (not like the x1) reactivity astonishing, immediate display, and a bright viewfinder specific (hybrid viewfinder is stunningly beautiful and it automatically!) - Picture perfect (as x1 that I had and sold quickly due to its deplorable slowness and lack of viewfinder) -
a quibble = button back end of the pad is too small and poorly easy to use-it lacks any zoom! a little big to fit in your pocket
the price is also quite high = 1200 Ä approximately (- x1 expensive than all the same)
In summary a great camera, a success, a large number who will make history!
Finally I have a poket high quality!
FUJI thank you!

http://flic.kr/ps/uevTA
Grin
21 Apr 2011 12:38PM
12 May 2011 11:43AM
Sorry to duplicate - meant to add this here...

I have had x100 for a few weeks now and it really does deliver very high image quality, with perhaps better noise at 800/1600 than my Nikon D700, BUT there are some issues:

1. the raw software the camera shipped with is poor and the on-camera "raw to jpeg" produced better quality; Adobe camera raw/DNG converter support for Photoshop only just became available - the wait was frustrating;

2. the firmware upgrade procedure advised by FUJI is ridiculously complex - why not just copy the DAT file to formatted card as with Nikon, Ricoh firmware upgrades?

3. why no "in focus" indicator for manual focus operation (for example the green square of the auto focus), even when the (very good) auto-focus assist for manual is used?

4. even when the instant review is cancelled for single shot operation, when a sequence of continuous shots has been taken, they are displayed whilst written to the card in the viewfinder (optical as well as electronic) - this prevents further shots being framed and taken, even if the full allocation of shots has not been used up: you can take extra shots, but not frame them in either viewfinder, which is plain silly;

5. the rotating dials on the top plate are excellent and positive but the AF MF focus selector switch (side) and main on-off switch are less precise, and the unnecessary spinning dial that duplicates the selector function of the control cursor makes precise selection more difficult: the controls of the Panasonic GF1 are more positive.

No new piece of technology is perfect: it's good to use the Panasonic GF1 with manual Zeiss lenses, but the sensor doesn't measure up at iso 400 and beyond; just imagine the Fuji sensor/software/viewfinder in the old Epson RD1 (based on Voightlander film body) with its Leica bayonet compatibility and nifty concealed rear screen, for those who aren't so insecurre they have to review every shot...
12 May 2011 3:47PM
I would certainly like one - basic camera controls without all the crap on the DSLRs to contend with.

Apertures on a lens ring, shutter speeds on a top plate dial and a reasonable focusing ring too.

If I could afford it!

Hopefully it will sell well and the price will come down accordingly.
glynnf 3 United Kingdom
27 Oct 2011 2:20PM
At last a quality compact camera with an optical viewfinder without having to go to Leica prices. What a pity no distance scale on the lens though. That would have been the most useful focusing feature for those like myself who do street photography and often have to capture the moment quickly.
Please Fuji, a Mark 2 version with a distance scale then I think we might have an item.
funkeldink e2
11 1.6k 1 United Kingdom
26 Dec 2011 5:39AM
its delicicious
wynn469 5 72 Wales
17 Mar 2012 9:32PM
Itís a camera and lens for candid, street or general photography. The portrait I would have thought is for reference of haw it handles skin tones. Currently I have a canon G10 which is good for street photography when the light is good but if the iso increasing its noise, looking at something like this as a replacement.

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