Fuji Should I go for the X100?

slackmachine

New Member
Jan 24, 2011
3
Hey everybody,
I'm looking for a new camera and I've been eyeing the X100 for a while. I have read a lot about it, but I'm just wondering what some specific reasons not to get it are from owners. I don't care at all about not being able to change lenses, 35mm is the only lens I need. I'm mainly looking at build, AF, and IQ. Thanks!
 

Luke

Super Moderator
Nov 11, 2011
214
Milwaukee, WI USA
Luke
Build quality is excellent, AF is average....maybe better than average once you learn how to use it. IQ is excellent. And I may be selling one soon if you want a really nice one with low miles. I dig it, but have too many cameras. It should be with someone who will use it more often. It feels great in the hand, too. Have you looked at the images in this forum?
 

Armanius

Bring Jack back!
Jan 11, 2011
123
Houston, Texas
Jack
Luke's assessment is right on point. IQ is probably one of the best APS-C cameras. Very low noise even at high ISO. Right up there with cameras utilizing Sony's 16 mp sensor.

AF speed is alright. Better than Oly's EP1/2, but not as fast as the new generation of Pens. AF accuracy can be iffy at times when too close to the subject.
 

retow

All-Pro
Jul 24, 2010
123
Build quality is excellent, AF is average....maybe better than average once you learn how to use it. IQ is excellent. And I may be selling one soon if you want a really nice one with low miles. I dig it, but have too many cameras. It should be with someone who will use it more often. It feels great in the hand, too. Have you looked at the images in this forum?


Are you posting under two different names? See #2 above "Luke". And if so, why?
 

BBW

Administrator Emeritus
Jul 7, 2010
123
betwixt and between
BB
Right, Eunice is history - she was "Spam". Thanks for the report, Nic! Now I can get back to preparing for the Thanksgiving Day dinner preparations.:wink:
 

BigTam

Regular
Jun 23, 2011
43
Dortmund, Germany
Ron
Build, IQ and AF:

Build: better tha most polycarbonate DSLRs, Great feel.

IQ: On a par with my 16 MP D7000, generally recognized as one of the best APS-C cameras. WB is almost always spot on, colours are wonderful, especially skin tones, ISO 3200 is jaw-dropping, and together with the f2 lens, makes low light easy.

AF: Not as fast as a DSLR. Whether it is fast enough depends on your style. Several threads here give tips on how to optimize it for your needs. Many X100 shooters use hyperfocal and manual focus for situations where instant focus is needed (street). For me, fast enough, YMMV.

If I never had another camera in my life, I'd be happy. But then, I also love new shiny toys, so maybe I will buy another camera, but the X100 is, and will remain, special.
 

slackmachine

New Member
Jan 24, 2011
3
Happy thanksgiving and thanks everybody! This is really helpful. So I'm comparing it to the e-pl1 and 17mm which lives on the camera. Is AF about on par? How bad is the "sticky aperture" problem I constantly read about? And also, I hate to say it but the pictures I've seen from the camera are pretty much the main reason I haven't gotten one yet. The colours seem generally over-saturated and unrealistic. Further, not many pictures seem especially sharp. I'm hoping I'm wrong :)
 

Luke

Super Moderator
Nov 11, 2011
214
Milwaukee, WI USA
Luke
Happy thanksgiving and thanks everybody! This is really helpful. So I'm comparing it to the e-pl1 and 17mm which lives on the camera. Is AF about on par? How bad is the "sticky aperture" problem I constantly read about? And also, I hate to say it but the pictures I've seen from the camera are pretty much the main reason I haven't gotten one yet. The colours seem generally over-saturated and unrealistic. Further, not many pictures seem especially sharp. I'm hoping I'm wrong :)
OK, first off.....I'm not trying to sell you my camera (which is currently in the classifieds). Actually, if anything, you may be talking me out of selling it the more I look at the images and think about what I should be looking for. Anyways.....

AF is on par with your current rig....maybe a little quicker (probably a fair bit quicker once you get used to it and understand how it focuses), but a fair bit slower than than the new Pens, but they're in a different league. The sticky aperture problem has hit an unknown number of cameras. It's bad. No one wants it, but Fuji has stepped up. From what I understand they acknowledge the problem and replace what needs replacing if your camera exhibits the SAB.

And lastly (and likely the most important part). the image quality. When I first got mine, I was expecting fireworks. Great riddles of the ages were going to be unraveled before my eyes. The TRUTH would be laid bare. Nirvana was actually here on earth, we just needed to buy the Fuji. In all actuality, it makes lovely files. Not that much different from a good DSLR (but of course we are judging them against lesser cameras most of the time). Noise free up to the moon (which is cool for sure). But I kept looking for more.....where were the fireworks?!?! I had heard that this was an unreal imaging machine. Here's an example for you. It couldn't be any more mundane. When I get a new lens or a new camera I focus on my pets. They are very willing subjects. This is Lucy.....

DSCF5027 by Lukinosity, on Flickr

First off, this is SOOC and I shot this at f2.0 (because I LOVE shallow DOF and wanted to see what it looked like). But look at the areas of focus....from mid-snout to just past the eyes. Everything is beautifully defined, but not cartoonishly CRISPY. I regularly over-process my images (I'll come back to this point in a bit) so when I first saw this shot I was disappointed. Let me remind you that this Straight Out Of Camera JPEG. Standard Sharpness and standard noise reduction and standard color. And you know what.....it looks exactly like STANDARD "how I see Lucy in real life (except my eyes are more like f16 with everything in focus)".

My problem with it (the camera)is that I had expected some miracle. I wanted it to spit out files like I get with other camera after I process them, I wanted super sharpened, super contrasty, super saturated images. The problem with the Fuji (for me) is that it accurately captures light. It reveals the scene as you program it to. It does what a camera is supposed to do.

SIDEBAR (I think this is why you see so many oversaturated and "unrealistic" photos attributed to this camera.....crazy expectations and years of cameras making up for shortcomings by by goosing the JPEGs) being tweaked by end users trying to get to the "real" image. Hey....I'm as guilty as the next.....maybe more so!

Here's another perfect example.

DSCF5013 by Lukinosity, on Flickr
Just a shot through our front window. An ugly urban nature shot (hey look a diseased tree and an alleyway). I immediately dismissed the shot (and the camera). Totally boring. In hindsight, there's loads of detail in both the shadows and the highlights. Great, accurate colors.....nicely saturated, but not ridiculous over the top PP.....like I saw that day...and this is SOOC again.

Well now I've started rambling and probably lost my train of thought, but here's the short of it. The X100 makes great, lovely natural photos. Wide open, they may be a touch soft, but that's the nature of wide open. Stopped down they're plenty sharp. Color and contrast are good. All of that can be adjusted in cam....you can crank it up or down to your hearts content, but right up the middle and straight OOC, they look great and natural. The sticky aperture blade problem may or may not be a problem if you decide to buy one, but I think Fuji is taking of it. You may have talked me out of selling mine, but I'm not sure. Give me a holler if you want more info (about mine...or in general).
 

Ray Sachs

Legend
Sep 21, 2010
123
Not too far from Philly
you should be able to figure it out...
In all actuality, it makes lovely files. Not that much different from a good DSLR (but of course we are judging them against lesser cameras most of the time). Noise free up to the moon (which is cool for sure). But I kept looking for more.....where were the fireworks?!?
Here's where I think it was a matter of your expectations being too high. I don't think I've ever seen anyone claim it was better than a good DSLR - people have primarily been amazed that its AS GOOD as a good DSLR in such a small and handy package. And, yes, for most of us on this type of board, its a step UP camera rather than a step DOWN camera, so the comparisons were mostly with other 'serious compacts', which generally are NOT as good as a good (or even entry level) DSLR in terms of IQ. I've never been a DSLR user - I shot for a few days with a Sony A33 with a really nice Zeiss lens once. That's the only camera I've spent any time with that could compare to the results I get from the X100. I had a Nex 5 for a while too and it was very nice, but I never shot it with any real quality glass and while it was GOOD, in various lighting conditions, the X100 is better in any of them. And, yeah, the jpegs are the first jpegs I like enough to forego shooting raw. And I like the heavily saturated look and shoot in Velvia a fair amount, so I'm not claiming 'accuracy', just quality! My X100 is one of two of my four cameras that are not at ALL versatile, both being fixed lens / fixed focal length. But I love those two cameras as much as my other two, far more versatile cameras, because they're just so GOOD, even if not all that practical.

BTW, congrats on Braun's MVP award! He deserved it. I remember when he was rookie of the year, there were some pretty serious questions about whether he really deserved it, given the year Tulowitzki had. I thought it was kind of a toss up, but didn't have any problem with Braun winning it. But I don't think there's ANY doubt about the MVP year he had this season. I know you were disappointed by the Brewers finish this year (hey, EVERYONE except St. Louis fans ended up disappointed!), but that's a nice honor for him and the team... I doubt he'll be quite as good next year, without Prince right next to him in the lineup, unless they somehow find a way to bring the big guy back. I wish we had him instead of Howard at first, and I LIKE Howard a lot, unlike some Philly fans.

-Ray
 

Armanius

Bring Jack back!
Jan 11, 2011
123
Houston, Texas
Jack
IMO, the quality of the X100's files are as good as the ones from the K-5, which, similar to the D7000, is arguably regarded as having one of the best if not the best IQ for APS-C cameras. On the other hand, "image quality" is very subjective. So what I may consider as "good" may totally bite in someone else's eyes. If you can get it from a shop with good return policy, try it out.

Here's a JPG macro shot previously posted in another thread. Minimal PP other than resizing.

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BBW

Administrator Emeritus
Jul 7, 2010
123
betwixt and between
BB
Yup, I think it's always going to end up being an aesthetic "call" when it comes to image quality - unless one is getting into pixels, etc. One person's idea of over saturated is not another's and so on.
 

Luckypenguin

Hall of Famer
Dec 24, 2010
123
Brisbane, Australia
Nic
The only thing that might limit the X100 compared to a DSLR is the lens. Otherwise there should be no technical reason to limit the IQ of a compact/mirrorless cam compared to a DSLR with a sensor of the same size, and there are many not-so-good lenses in DSLR land that don't help their IQ as well.
 
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slackmachine

New Member
Jan 24, 2011
3
Thanks for the recommendations everybody! I appreciate the feedback. I've been convinced an x100 is worth a shot :D And Luke, sorry, but I'm looking to see if I can trade for an x100 as opposed to buying one. Good luck selling though!
 

Iansky

All-Pro
Dec 8, 2011
123
Cotswolds, UK
Well Slackmachine,

The most important information that allows forum members to advise you on this is knowing what type of photography you do / want to use it for?

Personally, I purchased this camera specifically to use for street / landscape work as I wanted a small high quality camera delivering good IQ - the fixed lens is not an issue as this focal length works for both street & landscape.

I would suggest that rather than ask people to provide reasons not to purchase the X100, you should handle / try one and if it feels right, read reviews and look at images taken in varying scenrios at different ISO's and if they fit in with your style / requirements............Get one.

I can only endorse what many have said - it is a very formidable camera that offers a lot in a small, attractive, tactile camera that you either love or hate.

Here are a couple of samples of what it does for me to meet my needs:

This was taken at 1000ISO handheld
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This one is at 200ISO handheld
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