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back to article Fujifilm Finepix X100 APS-C camera

The Fuji FinePix X100 is, of course, a camera for those with more money than sense. Just look at it. Finished in wildly ostentatious silver magnesium alloy with splashes of leather on the grip, the retro viewfinder styling and chunky shutter speed dial evoke the rangefinders of the 1960s and 1970s. Fujifilm Finepix X100 Grand …

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ISO tests

The ISO 6400 image is about 1.5 stops underexposed compared to the others, and therefore can't be used for comparison because if you boost it to the same exposure it will be an effective ISO ~18000. What happened there?

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Anonymous Coward

The selling points

Surely the hybrid viewfinder and the size/weight (given the sensor being used) is the selling point of this camera, but the former barely gets a treatment here, and the latter is only mentioned in the context of getting a backup DSLR, not in the context of a camera which complements a DSLR.

That said, I'm not really convinced by the X100: the ISO performance isn't that great - plenty of detail on the wood has been smoothed away at ISO 1600 and there are some weird ghosting effects on the lettering - and the choice not to do interchangeable lenses (and not to do image stabilisation, even though it's quite easy to invoke accidental motion blurring as anyone with an old-school fixed lens film camera will be able to tell you) rather undermines the argument for this as an all-round camera.

There are plenty of people advocating the X100 as a "street photographer" camera, but unless one is hanging around dark and dirty back-streets and/or doing night photography, a compact is probably just as good, and a long-zoom compact even better for not being so conspicuous.

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Must resist tech lust

So want this.

Even with a pancake prime on it my slr is a bit bulky for carrying around every day but this would fit in my day bag just fine and the big sensor gives the sort of iso performance you would hope for. The sort of shots I've been missing have mostly been early morning/evening landscape scenes during commuting and this would do the job perfectly.

I've considered the various micro system cameras but with the zoom kit lenses on them they lose a lot of their compactness and if you are going to only carry a single prime what's the point of having the interchangeable lens? The focal length of the fuji seems a good compromise to me too, the Sony choice is 16mm f2.8 which I don't find as attractive and the u4/3 sensor doesn't offer as good high iso performance.

Of course carrying a £1k camera around every day would take a bit of bravery...

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Ru
FAIL

Holy pricing-out-of-the-market, batman

A thousand bucks for a nice, but not stunning camera with a non-interchangeable lens? Someone was on crack when they fired up the marketing for this one.

Compared to the EVIL (electronic viewfinder, interchangeable lens) cameras on offer from olympus, panasonic, sony, samsung, everyone and their dog, this just doesn't stack up. Maybe if it were half the price it might be worth it, but as it stands you can get something like an Olympus E-PL1 with a 14-40mm and a 20mm f/1.7 and still have more than enough money left over to fly away for a long weekend somewhere nice to play with your new toys.

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Stop

Pricing?

So Amazon are asking £899 for the Fuji already. The E-PL2 + 14-42mm is £480, Panasonic 20mm £320 and the VF-2 viewfinder (for those of us who prefer a vf) is £196 all from Amazon which comes to £996. Now I accept that you don't have to buy all that but the build quality of the X100 is also much higher than the Oly having handled both and I've already said I've already got one camera system in my slr, if I'm going away for the weekend I'll take that instead whereas the Fuji is pretty much a grab and go solution.

If I can't bring myself to pay for the Fuji I'm more likely to fall back to the XZ-1 but if you want the VF-2 you're still pushing towards £600 and trading off a lot in sensor size/performance.

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Some advantages over an SLR

That's all very well, but the SLR is heavier and attracts a lot more attention from the Police even though you are taking legitimate photos.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Pricing?

"So Amazon are asking £899 for the Fuji already. The E-PL2 + 14-42mm is £480, Panasonic 20mm £320 and the VF-2 viewfinder (for those of us who prefer a vf) is £196 all from Amazon which comes to £996."

Yes, but then the E-PL2 has a lot more glass to offer. In addition, there are other Olympus PEN models which also aren't bad and are cheaper than the latest models.

I'd also be concerned about Fujifilm's quality control. One of the reviews downrated the X100 significantly based on the usability of the menus and buttons, supposedly because a lot of shooting time was potentially wasted fiddling with things that shouldn't change or shouldn't be three pages into a menu, or whatever.

But I'd be even more concerned with the actual build quality. Not only have people complained about build issues, but I've seen complaints about lenses with various Fujifilm models, apparently significant variations in quality, and I've seen easily preventable defects in their cameras myself. I get the impression that Fujifilm's quality control policy is more about getting stuff out of the door and leaving it to people getting the faults repaired under warranty than it is about getting properly functioning kit out of the door in the first place.

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Old habits die hard?

Ah, so it is in a way like the S9000(9500 in eu)/S9100 (9600 in eu) series that I still use . Looks like a DSLR, but with all the drawbacks of not being one, while costing about as much as an entry level one.

Love the manual controls, the styling, but it REALLY would've been much better with a proper lens mount. Shame, really.

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Flame

Parallax what!?

Not wanting to be a pedant, but I will, I think you are looking for parallax error, not distortion. Parallax causes framing issues when you get into short focus scenarios (i.e. object close to the camera lens). Parallax does not cause distortion. You go on to note that the viewfinder displays only 90% of the image, which is a nice way to reduce the influence of parallax error. I suspect anyone who has the cash to indulge in one of these little lovelies will probably just use the rear screen when shooting up close and the whole parallax issue becomes irrelevant.

I want one but at that price I really need a seriously good reason.

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'(and watching, for trainspotters)'

Oi! I'll have you know there is nothing at all wrong with appreciating a well-designed iris! At worst, it's *certainly* not up to the level of social deviance involved in sitting in a bush all day with a pencil, a notepad, and a stopwatch.

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unlocks your creativity due to some limitations

They're definitely going after the Henri Cartier-Bresson street photography crowd with the Leica style body and a 35mm FOV lens (Cartier's favourite), I'd love to try this one out, for the past year I've been shooting with a Leica M3 also with a 35mm lens and it has completely changed my photography. don't get me wrong I LOVE my 5D2 but nothing tops the sheer joy of the creativity that flourishes by being limited to one focal length (zooming with your feet) and still getting some amazing pictures.

Also 5.6fps is way more than enough as long as you don't shoot sports (you wouldn't want to anyway with a 35mm) just wait for the "decisive moment"

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It's made for me!

I still shoot rangefinders with film and mostly with a 35mm lens.

When I want to shoot machine gun style, I have access to Canon 1D bodies, but even my slow 5D is enough for what I want to take pictures of.

This beast ist what I longed for, OK, exchangeable lenses would be a boon. But I happily trade a very good fixed 63° f2 lens for a very reasonable viewfinder and controls I can set without taking the camera from my eye.

The price is high, but where do I get a digital camera which handles like my trusty M2 for less than that?

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Pint

I've been waiting for this

Thank you!

Since it was announced I've been waiting for a review; looks good indeed, although the price is a bit steep for something that will struggle to find its place between my high-end compact and my film rangefinder ( with 110% viewfinder and mechanical parallax correction). But the price had been announced a while ago so that's no surprise. The glass on my RF is not as good as this one, but it is one stop faster, and for good glass, well, I doubt that this one is going to beat my MF mamiya-sekkor lenses (or some of my 35mm lenses for that matter)

Sitting on the fence right now...

I'll need to don my thinking pint.

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It reminds me of a 1940's Leica; and it's even more appealing

For about 50 years I've regretted trading my World War II-vintage Leica with a collapsing 3.5 Elmar lens to a war correspondant who gave me his well-used Nikkormat. While the Niddormat quickly became my favorite camera, I really missed the pocketabily and inconspicuousness of the Leica. Well, cost be damned, the Fuji X100 reminds me of my missing Leica and I believe I'll be able to use it a a truly high-quality take-everywhere camera. And, if you think of what the dollar was worth in the 1950's, the Fuji is still a hell of lot cheaper than my Leica that had been issued to a Luftwaff pilot during World War II.

I'm really looking forward to using the X100; and trading it a few years from now to an even more advanced model that accepts a few other prime lenses with the viewing automatically adjusting to each.

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But what about focus ?

With optional manual controls I look for the solution to the nuisance of automatic focus. Take a picture of something beyond a wire fence using a typical automatic camera and you get another dud shot, or a lovely picture of the wire.

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FAIL

Why bother?

It looks very nice, but if you want a fixed lens compact camera with a near full size "sensor", go and buy a second hand 35mm Leica. The lens is second to none, it won't be obsolete when the next model arrives and at the end of the day, it will be worth more in a couple of years time because its a Leica.

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Agreed. Kinda sorta.

In terms of quality and depreciation and sheer camera-nerd enjoyment, you're absolutely right. But if you factor in a tenner a roll for film and processing then you don't need to shoot too many photos before the running costs head in favour of the digital option.

I love that they've given it a proper shutter cable thread though. Whoever decided to remove those from modern cameras was a charlatan of the worst colour.

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JB
Happy

Lottery

On my list of stuff to spend my lottery winnings on...if I did the lottery!

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Concert snaps

Some venues are getting funny about SLRs, some have always been funny about them. Even when you point out that your camera isn't a "professional" camera as mentioned on the venue rules.

So cameras like this Fuji seem to fit the bill. It's better by miles than a compact as the sensor size is comparable to an SLR (except a full frame sensor SLR of course).

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Coat

Wants

That's all

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Alert

inconsistent exposure

Has no one noticed that the photos on the ISO test page are not consistently exposed? It looks like the 6400 ISO photo is at least 1/2 a stop underexposed compared with the others. What's up with that? Does the camera not expose the same scene consistently or is there an (operator) error in the ISO test.

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I miss my manual SLR

One of the advantages of manual cams that the full-auto brigade seem to have overlooked is that a manual cam can be prepped for a series of shots before the action starts. When the time comes you can then raise the camera and shoot in one motion, the only delay being your own reflexes.

What's more, you can lower the camera and then raise it again without losing your settings.

Meanwhile the full-auto cam user is frantically trying to get the focus, zoom and exposure back to exactly where they were a few seconds ago ....and misses the shot.

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Re: I miss my manual SLR

Not that SLRs are on topic at all, but you do realise you can operate a DSLR in full manual mode... right?

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