Fuji X100 first impressions from the CP+ show floor

Fuji X100 Rear View

credit: farwesttexasphotog (flickr)

A reader send me his first hands-on impressions with the Fuji X100 camera from the CP+show. He was not allowed to take any sample images:

  1. Three shutter sounds are programed in. They all sound HORRIBLE. Nothing like the satisfying "click" one would expect from a retro-classic camera.
  2. No front filter threads as far as I can see. Not sure what the deal is with that unless they have a non-standard mount. ND filter is built in.
  3. Focus ring rotation can be set to adjust clockwise or counter-clockwise. That's neat.
  4. Eye point detection sensors are problematic. Moving my hand over the rear LCD activated the EVF and shut down the LCD. Placement of the eye sensors seems wrong.
  5. Menu system level 1 is a two-way tree "Camera" and "Set". Cascades down from there. Seems like an ok user interface.
  6. I think I'd prefer a $1200 camera to feel a bit heavier. It feels too light a.k.a. cheap to me. I jokingly suggested they stick some lead weights in it... an underling scribbled some notes (!).
  7. No seals on the battery/SD card compartment or interface door. I'd expect a rubber ring as a minimum at this price point.
  8. The focus mode slide switch on the left side seems to be a weak point to me. If it's not sealed I suspect also a point for water ingress. It's the weakest control device on the unit IMHO.
  9. The top dials and on/off/shutter release all feel fine.
  10. The viewfinder is pretty good. It's easy to switch from EVF to OVF.
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  • thanks

    even if it would be lame as duck, it would still beat everything nondslr nikon puts out.
    it beats all leica does and all canon nondslr.
    hell it beats all non dslrs

  • Nick

    Consumer electronics manufacturers do add weights their devices.

    • Global

      Common sense comments from the Post Reference.

      Except for one thing: If it feels weightless around your neck, then all I would say is “Thank goodness!” and leave it at that. If its really that light, he just emphasized a selling point as a travel camera, not a negative! 😉

    • Just A Thought

      Older cameras weighed more because the top and bottom were made from heavy brass which was then plated. Plastic even with a metal coating still weighs a lot less than brass – probably costs a lot less than brass. I guess if you want brass tops and bottoms you have to visit the Leica booth. Either that or make a note for the engineers to add lead weights inside the camera – kinda sad when you think about it.

  • Zaph

    “Three shutter sounds are programed in”

    There’s also a silent mode apparently, according to the FujiGuys.

  • Zaph

    “No front filter threads as far as I can see. Not sure what the deal is with that unless they have a non-standard mount”

    The lens end screws off for the filter accessory, which accepts 49mm filters.

  • PCraigs

    Hope the eye point detection sensor and the shutter sound can be disabled. Also wish that it is more weather sealed as I want to use this to replace my travel gear.

  • Global

    -1

    The poster made valid comments. With a human emphasis only. I read as many positive points as negative points. The negative points are made with flare, that’s all.

    The community can decide if his first views were correct or not (as some pointed out, the filter thing may be incorrect). And I also happen to believe the weight thing is NOT a minus, but a huuuuge positive.

    It was the Admin’s duty to filter the emotional stresses — not the reviewer. Newspapers, for example, often “cut the schmultz” out of interviews and print “just the facts.” Admin’s duty, not the guy being (very) helpful by sharing his thoughts. I appreciate both Admins and reviewers thoughts. But also suggest they tone back the emphases on first-reviews until issues are proven negatives. It could hurt a company unnecessarily (and sharing misinformation about products and companies in a written or record form is defamation & libel, which can result in lawsuits. The courts have ruled that third-party websites can be punished for this if they SOUGHT OUT the information, which the Admin did (as opposed to the “comments section” which Admin does not seek out, and merely gives forum to).

    As such, its Admin’s responsibility and the reviewer simply engaged in a private conversation with him.

    • I don’t agree with you Global, I am a firm believer in freedom of speech and no company can go after me because I published someone’s thoughts/opinion on a given product.

      • WoutK89

        But I agree with Global’s point about filtering out the mistakes, or at least put a note down what is the fact. Anyone really keen on getting this camera knows it has the filter via a separate add-on ring.

        About the weight, I would only say, it is an opinion, nothing more. Some people think a D300 doesnt feel heavy enough, while others say its too heavy too. So it is also the job of a reader to draw his own conclusions from this story,

  • hobo

    +1

    I’ve notice a lot of so-called “reviewers” who haven’t actually used or shot with the X100 already demonstrate a very negative attitude toward the camera, so much so that I’m irritated by these wankers (Ken Rockwell to name one).

    It’s a travel/carry around camera, so moderately light weight is good, IMO. Many people have complained that the Nikon D700 and similar high-end DSLR’s are too heavy and bulky. Try carrying around a 24mm f1.8 Sigma on either a D300 or 7D, or a D700 with any lens, and carry that around all day. Reviewer is just out of his league on this one.

    • jason

      Agree. Ken Rockwell is a jerk lol

    • Terost

      Hobo: I am one of those photographers that like heavy cameras. There are places where using a tripod is not possible and a D700 camera with a few lenses works for me. I use a heavy camera for pro work and carry a lightweight camera like the Sony NEX-5 camera for vacation and traveling.

      • hobo

        I too shoot with a D700 and f2.8 Nikkors, so nothing different. I also shoot a small dslr and pancake lens for documentary/everyday, because I can’t stand P&S (lack of) functionality, responsiveness, etc., but may not have space in my everyday bag/briefcase for a D700. For me, a Leica M film camera with 35 or 50 is the perfect weight and size. I don’t like the current crop of ILC’s because they lack optical VF–I’m old-fashioned that way.

        Essentially I think we’re saying the same thing.

  • Bruce

    I provided Admin with these “first hands-on impressions”.

    My “first hands-on impressions” are not a review folks.

    Other than being generally aware of the X100 and the basic value proposition I did zero detailed research on specifications before my first hands-on at CP+, or at a private viewing at Fujifilm the following day.

    My “first impressions” are indeed first impressions.

    I already own and shoot with other fine Fuji cameras so to suggest I have a brand bias against Fuji would be incorrect.

    I suspect the folks at Fuji don’t think I have a brand bias against them because I did after all get invited to a private viewing the following day.

    I also shoot with Nikon, Leica, Ricoh, and Sony. I shop for photographic tools not brands.

    I’m a street shooter (amongst other genres). I’m interested in tools that are suitable for this task. If I can be accused of anything it’s maybe having a bias in favor of the concept behind the X100.

    I’ll address each of my original numbered points in turn:

    1. The electronic shutter sounds. I have since learned these can be disabled. I didn’t notice that option in the relevant menu. Great. The sounds provided are indeed, shall I rephrase, exceedingly unpleasant to my ears?

    2. Elsewhere I have seen comments (including on Fuji’s Japanese language web site) that it will take 49mm filters with the adapter ring. Great! But I have not seen that demonstrated yet and the only unit shown with the adapter ring and hood was behind glass. I tried to look closely but could not see any threads inside the adapter ring suitable for a filter.

    3. I’d say this is a positive.

    4. Great if the eye point detection can be disabled. I didn’t notice that in the menu system. As it is, the auto switching is annoying.

    5. I’d say this is a positive.

    6. Light can also be good. Personally I like a little more heft. I’m not talking D3 heft here.

    7. Remains to be seen how it holds up in the weather. Last two days in Japan I have been out in rain, sleet, and snow with my NEX-5 and no problems at all. Just pointing out a detail some folks might want to know about… on a $1200 camera (plus $$ for a filter adapter ring).

    8. Again, just offering an opinion and “first impressions” on this.

    9. I’d say this is a positive.

    10. I’d say this is a positive.

    As for “attitude”, I’ll let others judge if capitalizing a personal opinion i.e. “HORRIBLE” is a greater offense than calling someone a “bozo” on an online forum.

    By all means wait for the REVIEWS if a first impression will upset you.

  • Bruce

    I should add that ADMIN did NOT solicit my comments on the X100; I offered them as private opinions based upon my own first impressions.

  • You guys all need to chill out. This is just the opinion of a reader who had the chance to play with the camera and was nice enough to share it with us. I do not understand why all the backlash. You don’t have to agree with him and I am not sure why should I filter out what somebody else thinks about that camera. If any of you had the chance to play with the X100, I would be happy to hear your opinion, since I am very interested in that camera. I should be getting one next month and I will let you know what I think about it, but till then, let’s don’t kill the messenger.

  • inteliboy

    interesting… seems ho hum. personally am pretty damn excited for the x100 — and find the price reasonable… I get the feeling that a lot of students frequent these camera blogs..

  • ZDP-189

    There are so many criticisms of the price point. If the lens and imaging is as good as the hype, then it’s a rather good deal. A Lumix-derived Leica is costs twice what it’s worth without the red badge, so the X100’s $1100 price point is appropriate against the X1’s $2000. So then we look at the features.

    Both are 36mm equivalent fixed prime lenses over a 12MP APS-C sensor. They are about the same size and form factor, they use contrast detect AF. They both positively ooze style in their own ways.

    But there are a few big differences…

    Fuji: 1280 x 720 pixels (HD) video with stereo sound
    Leica: N/A (a.k.a. SOL)

    Fuji: F/2.0 … a full stop faster
    Leica: F2.8

    Fuji: 10cm minimum focal distance … really use that wide lens
    Leica: 30cm minimum focal distance … meh

    Fuji: Built-in 3 stop ND filter
    Leica: Nothing built in. Get a filter or forget shooting wide and slow in daylight

    Fuji: ISO 200-6400 (100-12800 with expansion) … 2 more stops
    Leica: ISO 100-3200

    Fuji: 30s to 1/4000s … one more stop
    Leica: 30s to 1/2000s

    Fuji: 5 fps … twice as fast
    Leica: 3fps

    Fuji: approx. 460,0000 dots … double the resolution
    Leica: approx. 230,000 pixels

    Fuji: SD / SDHC / SDXC memory card (max 2TB)
    Leica: SD / SDHC memory card (max 32GB)

    and to cap it all

    Fuji: that game changing hybrid optical+1,440,000 pixel LCD
    Leica: No viewfinder of any kind. You have to go stick an accessory VF breaking the lines and forefeiting the hot shoe (for $350) and don’t forget the $160 aluminium grip because they didn’t get the ergonomics right.

    So to sum up: In any of the many categories where the X100 is different to the X1, the X100 beats the X1 by a factor of two. Not to mention that awesome hybrid viewfinder, which is the real reason anyone wants to buy the X100.

  • Ismael

    “I’d expect a rubber ring as a minimum at this price point.”

    Then you must be shocked that the Leica M9 is not fully waterproof up to 100 meters.

    • Bruce

      Am I shocked that a $7000+ electronic camera is not weather sealed? Yes, I’d say that is a fair comment.

  • Torben

    Thanks Bruce, you point out things I would like to know.

    Shutter sound are always OFF on my camreas anyway.

    My old Sony R1 had LCD/EVF autoswitching (could be off too), auto mode could be very annoying, so I hope there is a manual switching option in the X100 menu.

    Weight, can you compare it to another camera on the market?.

  • Igorek7

    How about to see the photos and listen opinions of the guy who is already working with FujiFilm X100?
    http://brandonremler.blogspot.com/

  • TaoTeJared

    Great first impression and observations Bruce! I appreciate you sharing the info. I’m looking forward to being able to handle one myself once it is in stores.

    I caught the review site that had ISO sample images before they were asked to take them down and compared to a D7000 and the camera equaled it through 32oo and was sharper. It was not the final model but I doubt it would get any worse.

    It won’t be for everyone, for for some it could prove to be quite a great camera.

  • john doe

    Thanks for sharing. Don’t mind the communist retards who can’t think for themselves and needs everything to be moderated.

  • sgts

    A model with a fur hat, how groundbreaking.

  • Gareth

    yodobashi camera and bic camera have it listed at 128,000. for that price it will have to be perfect. soft wide open wont do it.

    • Bruce

      And if my Japanese is correct the ship date for orders will be March 5th.

  • Gareth

    it’s on kitamura now for ¥115,200. as you said, release date is the 5th.

  • Bruce

    It will be interesting to see what cameras folks unload once the X100 hits the street. The used camera stores I go to like Shimbashi, Fujiya, Map, and others always get near-new gear in the door around these releases. I’m back in Japan on March 16th so I can’t wait to see out of curiosity what folks are switching out of.

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