An interesting perspective. I to feel strongly about what you summarize in this bit "Less is More. More is Less. The LESS we have to fiddle with a camera, the more intuitive our vision can become. The More we fiddle with the camera, the Less intuitive the process of seeing becomes. The camera becomes an intrusion on vision, on process and on creativity."Here's how I see things. First I will speak for myself and then for many, many other street shooters.
My ideal street camera was and probably always will be a Leica M4 with a 35mm Cron, or Lux in low light. Why the M4? Ok, it has a shutter speed dial. It has an aperture. It has a great viewfinder.
That's it! I didn't use a light meter for many, many years. Everything was intuitive.
Now I speak for many others. The ideal camera for the street has an aperture, a shutter speed, some kind of viewing system. That may be an OVF, an EVF, screen etc. The camera probably has a meter in it. It probably has a zillion menu settings that mean nothing but to add to the variables on setting the camera.
As photographers, we are blessed and cursed with the Inverse Square Law. The more the camera supplies, menues, interchangeable lenses, finders etc, the less intuitive the process of seeing becomes.
As we go deeper into camera selection, we go deeper into technology and that can in fact lead us out of the intuitive process of seeing and making photos.
We start to question what we want and or need to get a better grasp on shooting images.
Visualize and remember my M4. How simple. How elegant. How conducive to the art of seeing and recording. The M4 will force you to use your eyes and brain to work together without the crutch of technology.
Even a camera like the X100 that has a simple concept about it but yet it is surrounded by advanced technology to simplify things. There are many issues, complaints about the camera and most people don't have it yet.
What we do know is that the X100 has promised to be a camera for the shooter with an artist heart and mentality. Of course the Pro's will use it to their advantage but really it's designed as a street or candid camera.
The firmware will be upgraded. The camera will get a strong workout by many users and in the end, each user will have to decide if this particular camera with it's technology is the ideal camera for them.
Is the X100 the ideal street camera? I would think that if Fuji can get the firmware to be what it should be, then it could very well be the ideal street camera.
In order for anything to happen with the firmware, Fuji must pay attention to the Inverse Square Law.
Less is More. More is Less. The LESS we have to fiddle with a camera, the more intuitive our vision can become. The More we fiddle with the camera, the Less intuitive the process of seeing becomes. The camera becomes an intrusion on vision, on process and on creativity.
So, to answer the question, for me...no, the X100 isn't the ideal camera. The M4 is the ideal camera because it doesn't intrude on my vision. It makes me think. It lets me make mistakes and learn from them. It makes me FEEL the light and set the exposure based on that feeling.
So, what does the X100 do that the M4 doesn't? It keeps me out of the darkroom. It keeps me from film. It works in the digital process and I really like that now. I'm 61 and won't develop film anymore.
So, to sum up..... The X100 will be whatever the user wants it to be. It has the potential to be the ideal street camera, for a while.
I have one coming, hopefully soon. I will keep it and use it unless the camera starts to intrude on my vision. No camera has ever survived an intrusion on my vision.
I hope the best for all the X100 users and hope it really becomes your ideal camera. For me, time will tell but I have high hopes.
With all the negative energy about this camera, remember...."One man's heaven is another man's hell."
I can see the importance of better optics for flowers, but I'm not sure I do for streetshooting. For sure, a 24mm Zeiss prime will be nice in a lot of ways, including low light, but for street applications I find the 16 and even the kit zoom (in decent light) more than adequate for street shooting. Street photography has never been about the ultimate in image quality for me - in fact I'm more than happy with the IQ of my LX5 in this regard, except in low light, and that's more about performance, decent shutter speed, etc, than the actual output quality. That said, the IQ of the X-100 is awfully nice for any application that a 35mm equivalent lens works for. Which is a lot.Me too, Streetshooter, me too. I am 63 and will have to "settle" for what I can manage, which is probably the X100, though I am now not sure it will be significantly better than the NEX5 if the latter were to get better optics. Like you, I need the auto focus, so using non-NEX lenses is fine for flowers, but not for street.