Does this fourth-generation camera produce results that impress?
The Fujifilm X100F is the fourth- generation camera in the X100 series and it has seen some impressive updates that are in line with those found in other recent offerings from Fujifilm, including features found in the likes of the X-T2 and the X-Pro2. At launch it was billed as being a powerful new addition to the X Series range of premium compact cameras, but the question is, is it really as powerful as Fujifilm would like us to believe?
This new model features the same impressive 24.3MP sensor and X-Processor Pro engine as the X-Pro2, which is a reasonably big leap up from the 16.3MP sensor found in its predecessor, the X100T. The new mirrorless camera also has an updated Advanced Hybrid Viewfinder, which is able to switch between the optical and electronic viewfinder with absolute ease. This means it will suit a variety of photographers, especially with the additional option of shooting in Live View using the LCD.
The X100F features a 24.3MP X-Trans CMOS III APS-C sensor with no low-pass filter. Other new features in the premium compact camera include a built-in ISO dial that is incorporated into the shutter dial and the focus lever, which enables you to instantaneously move the focus area without taking your eye off the viewfinder. The easy to use focus lever makes getting the most out of the camera’s 91-point AF system – which can be expanded to 325 points – extremely intuitive. Unfortunately the ISO control can be a little irksome, as it can be rather fiddly and in low-light conditions has no illumination. There is a new C position on the exposure compensation dial, which allows for a +/-5 exposure compensation, and gives you far greater control over your exposures. The standard ISO sensitivity has been expanded from 6400 to 12800 and the low-light performance is pretty good. The camera is able to find focus in relatively low light and when needed, the camera’s AF assist light kicks promptly into action.
Bokeh is beautiful when shooting at wider apertures, however images shot at f2 can sometimes be a little too soft. The impressive detail and image quality, combined with the Film Simulation modes means that images straight out of the camera really impress. The camera is pleasantly quick in general use and the 8fps continuous shooting means that, when used with a fast memory card, you can shoot a series of images without having the inconvenience of buffering. The camera has a single focal length 23mm lens (35mm format equivalent: 35mm), which gives the user a beautifully wide angle of view without the distortion often found at such focal lengths. The focal length makes this camera the ideal choice for street photographers and travel shooters. The mirrorless fixed lens offering also sports an understated, but slick design, meaning that street shooters will be able to shoot discreetly and the lightweight body means that it is perfect for travel, too.
The magnesium panelling is super-stylish and seems really robust, with a metal lens cap that feels sturdy and high-end. In hand, the mirrorless camera is very well balanced, however, we did find the aperture ring to be a little fiddly with this only getting worse the bigger your hands. The grip could be deeper and more ergonomic, although we didn’t find this to be a hindrance during our testing.
As this is the perfect street camera we would have loved for it to have a vari-angle LCD screen to aid composing at awkward angles and shooting from the hip, however, this is a small irritation that is outweighed by the quality of the results produced. One of our favourite features of this compact premium camera is actually the wireless functionality and how incredibly easy it is to transfer images from the camera to smartphone via the Fujifilm app.
For photographers looking for power and high-quality results without the hassle of changing lenses or the weight of a DSLR, then we can confidently say that the X100F is a really good option.