x100_Fujifilm

Happiness in the field of photography is being able to take a picture and not have to worry about settings, focal length, lighting, or image quality. Does that kind of camera still exist in our modern world? Certainly. It’s called the Fujifilm x100. Now, before all the trolling naysayers discount this product as being not a true digital single lens reflex (dSLR) camera, it’s close. I’ll give you that. Then again, if it takes good shots and you’re happy with the results, who really cares? There are so many positives to the product that I doubt I’ll be able to touch upon them all in this brief review. After all, you merely came to the site to get an overall recommendation and not the nitty-gritty details. We’ll save that for the more tech-savvy reviewers.

First of all the camera is quiet. In Street Photography, being able to keep the camera quiet is key to being effective (plus taking random shots). It does that because there are no mirrors in the camera. In a standard SLR, the mirror flips up briefly to expose the film to the light (or so they tell me). That’s what the majority of the noise is about. The x100 doesn’t have that issue because there is no mirror.

It’s very easy to operate. Once you have your settings in place, look through the viewfinder and shoot. In that regard it’s a very forgivable camera. If you have the aperture and shutter speed set, the program inside will adjust the film speed to accommodate. Likewise if the film speed and aperture is set, the shutter will adjust to create a usable image. Of course, the negative about this camera is the awkward menu settings. Once you figure those controls out, you’ll be golden. There are quite a few settings, so you need to sit down and concentrate on getting them right. There are certainly manuals and guides on the internet that will help walk you through those, and since this is merely an overview/review, I won’t belabor the point. The camera software has gone through quite a few versions and it seems like Fujifilm is listening to its customers.

Lastly, the camera is unobtrusive. It doesn’t get in your way when you’re in the field or in the street. There is a solid feel to it because Fuji did a great job in making it that way, but when you put the viewfinder up to your eye, it’s not blocking your entire face. It was designed to be that way. Because there are no interchangeable lens (and because the standard lens is a 23mm Fujinon), you don’t stand out in a crowd. Now you may be a total professional but people may not see you as that, which has its good and bad points. For Street, though, it’s a great thing not to be noticed.

Pros:

12.3-megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor
The FinePix X100 features a custom 12.3-megapixel APS-C CMOS high-performance sensor, internally optimized and developed exclusively for this model. 

Great Retro design
The FinePix X100 features a beautiful, high-quality design inspired by the classic look and feel of traditional film cameras.

Film Simulation Modes
Film Simulation Modes give photos the distinctive look of Velvia, PROVIA and ASTIA color reversal film emulsions and Monochrome Mode that can be fine-tuned with R/Ye/G filter settings.

Additional Features

  • EVF/OVF Focus Area: Choose between EVF, which is a “what you see in the viewfinder is what you get” or the OVF, which is similar to a rangefinder, where what you see through the viewfinder is slightly different than what comes out in the image. Very easy to flip between modes.
  • HD Movie mode: Lets users capture the action in 720p high-definition detail.
  • Motion Panorama: The Motion Panorama function is built into the machine and it’s  easy to capture 180° and 120° panoramics.
  • Multi-Bracketing Functions: The FinePix X100 has four types of bracketing functions: AE, ISO, Dynamic Range and Film Simulation. One click of the shutter captures three bracketed images of the scene so the photographer knows she’s captured the moment.

Cons from Users:

  • Even at firmware 2.01 the autofocus is painfully slow and made me miss shots waiting for lock.
  • Closer than about 4 feet you have to engage Macro mode. This is frustrating and could result in lost shots if you are not prepared.
  • Low light capability is APS-C, DSLR quality. You will not get full frame performance obviously, but for a camera this size I was surprised how well it handled subway tunnels. I have not tried night shooting it yet. Indoors is very good.
  • Remember this is not an SLR. There is a slight distortion in what you see and what you get with the optical view finder. The Electronic Viewfinder solves that problem

Customer Comments:

  • Here’s the thing: 99% of the time when you’re using the camera, you’ll want to turn it on and forget about it. When you aren’t using it, it will go to “sleep” to protect your battery and will wake up with any press of a button. No big deal.
  • This camera reminds me mostly of shooting my Leica M8 and that is a good thing. If you think of the X100 as an automatic manual focus you can get some really nice shots.
  • The controls are terrific. One dial for aperture, one dial for shutter speed, one dial for exposure compensation, and a function button that can be mapped to ISO.
  • The handling was terrible, the buttons and dials are really fiddly and not positive feeling at all. I wanted to love it…

Bottom Line

I love my x100. Fujifilm seems to listen to its customers. It updates the firmware often enough to make changes customers have suggested. At first glance, it could be considered a high priced point and shoot, but it’s so much more. When others begin comparing it seriously to Leica cameras, Fujifilm has hit on something great. They seem to have been doing similar upgrades and suggestions with better models such as the Fujifilm x100s and the XT1.

Fujifilm x100s

The marketplace is filled with great cameras, no one can deny that. One of those cameras – or I should say – camera families is the Fujifilm X-series camera. The three primary cameras in this series: x100, x100s, and XT1 are great for what they do and will not disappoint the user. For the purposes of this review I will focus (no pun) on the x100s.

The x100s is an upgrade to the x100 and a stellar one at that. It has a fixed focal length Fujinon 23mm lens for the up close street photographer. Unfortunately the F2 aperture limits the camera a bit. Like its predecessor, the x100s offers an Optical View Finder (EVF) and an Electronic View Finder (EVF). Why is that significant? Well, since the camera isn’t a standard SLR (it fits halfway in between an DSLR and a digital Rangefinder), you can switch pretty easily between EVF and OVF. With EVF you see what you’re shooting; with OVF, you see what you’ll get through the viewfinder. It takes a bit of getting used to, but once you master it, it’s literally a flick of a button.

Fujifilm x100sThe camera is built well and is just solid. You’ll notice that when you handle it. It feels, well, like a camera should. Now, don’t be taken aback by the retro look it has to it. I started taking shots with the x100 and a 25 year old niece noticed the camera and mentioned that it was probably pretty expensive. Had she heard about the Leica M9? Who knows?

I think one of the good things about using a camera like this is that you can blend into the crowd. Obviously this is great for blending into crowds. On the other hand, people see it and because it doesn’t look like a “real” camera, they assume you’re just fooling around with it, all the while taking great shots. So, some think it’s expensive looking and others think it’s a toy. You win in both scenarios.

I could go on and on about some of the features of this camera but those are out there already for all to see. Suffice to say, the Fujifilm x100s a welcome upgrade to the Fujifilm x100. Is it worth an extra $500+ dollars to upgrade from the previous model? Only you can determine that. If you’re able to use it for what it’s built for, you will have no problems and you will probably recoup your investment easily – if that’s what you’re using it for.

On the other hand, others here here and here have made interesting comparisons to the much more expensive Leica M9. For a fraction of the price, you can get a near Leica-quality machine. Leica enthusiasts laugh at such suggestions because to them, Leica is the absolute best. In some respects it is, but in other areas, it’s a very overpriced toy. You decide.

Features

  • Replicate Fujifilm’s acclaimed color reversal photo films with Film Simulation
  • Studio-Ready Professional Color Negative Film Modes for Perfect Portraits
  • 3x Digital Zoom Movie Shooting
  • APS-C 16M X-Trans CMOS II Sensor & EXR Processor II

Pros from Consumers

  • Great upgrade from the previous version
  • Great manual controls
  • Images sharpness due in part to the elimination of the optical low pass filter
  • Nearly unlimited flash sync speed due to its leaf shutter
  • Built-in 3 stop ND filter
  • Unobtrusive and inconspicuous when out in public.
  • Completely silent shutter – this is where the mirrorless shutter makes the difference
  • Camera shines for its photography of people. Skin tones, etc. are all stunning. The grain pattern is beautiful and truly “film-like”.
  • Lens. I was worried about a  fixed lens. But the lens is the perfect focal length and is sharp throughout.

Cons from Users

  • A bit more resistance to the on/off switch
  • Allowing the user to customize the Q menu to allow for ALL camera operating choices
  • No telephoto capability with fixed lens
  • Obviously, the camera is not cheap.
  • It isn’t really a “compact” camera – its way smaller than my massive dSLR with grip, flash, and lenses, but it’s not pocketable – especially not with a hood on.
  • Quirky at times. Menu has some issues that Fujifilm should address. “For example, I got frustrated for 10 minutes trying to switch back to the optical viewfinder from electronic before realizing the optical with overlay doesn’t work in Macro mode.”
  • The lens barrel intrudes on the optical viewfinder view, hence, natural distortion.
  • Cheap strap but it’s an easy fix.

Bottom Line
The Fujifilm x100s is a lot on the high side for novices; and only a bit pricey the hobbyists. Will it or can it replace your standard dSLR such as a Canon EOS 60d?. Possible. The lack of an interchangeable lens system limits the usage only slightly. In the 1980s there was a saying that fits here: SCUFI – shoot close up for impact. With a 23mm Fujinon lens, you’re just going to have to get close to your subject. But if you buy this camera, you would already know that. To my knowledge, Fujifilm is not even thinking about making interchangeable lenses. Why would it? If they hit on a great camera without it, why mess up the works?

Canon_EOS_60d

Canon is one brand that has hit the markets high, offering the best of digital cameras for amateurs, mid-level professionals and ace photographers. The discovery of Canon EOS 50d two years back added pink feathers to the brand’s cap. Now it is time to welcome the all-new Canon EOS 60d into the market. Calling it a successor of Canon EOS 50d is not quite incorrect. However, the all-new Canon EOS 60d is much more than just an heir. It is crafted using the best of technology and comes with super-improved ISO capabilities, making it easier to click snapshots even in the dimmest of light. To learn more about the features of Canon EOS 60d, have a quick look at the product’s overview.

Overview:

Canon EOS 60d is undoubtedly a cutting-edge discovery. The widget is no less than a blessing to photographers. It is a powerful tool with loads of advanced camera features. To start with, Canon EOS 60d comes with 18.0 megapixel body lens, allowing you to capture clear images of faraway objects. Accessorizing it further is a CMOS sensor and a very modern image processor known as ‘DIGIC 4.’ This is an added advantage for all photographers since the sensor and image processor makes it easy to capture the finest of details even from the farthest of distance. Another outstanding feature of the EOS 60d is the use of better and extended ISO capabilities. The margin ranges from 100 to 6400 but it can effectively be expanded up to 12800. Are you eager to learn about the benefit of having an improved ISO capability? Well, with a higher range of ISO capability, clicking pictures in the darkest of places becomes a task easier than expected. You can now obtain clear snapshots even when taken in the dark.

For creating a stunning photo-stat, it is very crucial to have hands on a camera that have an extra-ordinary view finder and even more in-camera features like advanced filters and flexible angle viewing options. This is when it is appropriate to state that the Canon EOS 60d is a model that is well built for all. Handling it is way easier than expected since both the deep hand grip and the thumb rest is accessorized with an extra textured area. The new Canon camera weighs as less as 755g, thereby ensuring that the load on your shoulder is very little when doing outdoor shoots. Just like the early Canon model of 50d, this camera is also weatherproof. In a nutshell, Canon EOS 60d is a perfect tool for both aspirants and crackerjack photographers. Let’s delve in a little and find more about this extra-ordinary Canon discovery.

Pros:

  1. Canon EOS 60d has potentially moved out of the semi-pro bracket. It has instead rewarded all aspiring and enthusiastic photographers with a much advanced tool compared to the ones in the Rebel line. In fact, the Canon EOS 60d is a discovery that remarkably bridges the gap between the very basic Rebel tools and the high-end 7D cameras.
  2. This new-era DSLR comes with a superb combination of lenses, thereby ensuring top-notch image quality. EOS 60d has an advanced APS-C sized 18.0 Megapixel camera lens with a terrific CMOS sensor. Cherry on the top – an accessorizing image processor DIGIC 4 makes it possible to capture the finest of details in every single snapshot. These added attributes also ensure vibrant and colorful depiction in every snap.
  3.  For improved performance, the Canon EOS 60d has a 3.0-inch clear view LCD. From low to high, it enables easy varied angle viewing. The camera excels in its craft and carries advanced features like an improved view finder, quality camera filters, plus HDMI outputs, built-in wireless flash control, external microphone jack and audio control options. It is worth mentioning here that the Canon EOS 60d has a modified and improved ISO capability crafted to it. This allows a photographer to click clear quality pictures in dim ambiances.
  4. DSLR cameras are great tools for still snapshots and not videos. Luckily, the Canon EOS 60d ensures top-notch video quality. Features like a 9-point cross-type auto-focus system and quality burst shooting system allowing 5.3 frames per second accentuate the quality of regular videos.
  5. The use of articulated display which is also a 3-inch rotating high resolution display is a commendable feature in the EOS 60d.

Cons:

  1. The fact that the Canon EOS 60d has only 9 focus points sets-back the popularity of the camera to some extent. One of its major competitors Nikon D700 comes with an overwhelming 37 focus points. It surely lures the interest of budding photographers instantly, leaving a curtailed number of Canon fans.
  2. With the addition of features in the Canon EOS 60d, the user interface has undergone quite a few complex modulations. As a result, some photographers have a hard time dealing with the interface.
  3. Although the quality of video is top-notch when shot with the EOS 60d, a major drawback is witnessed due to the lack of a continuous autofocus mode.
  4. The high-resolution rotational LCD display experiences a total washout when exposed to sunlight. Also, when the camera is set in tungsten lighting mode, the feature of auto white balance fails to function. It thereby leaves a bad impact on the picture quality.
  5. Shooting live view with the Canon EOS 60d can be quite challenging since the camera works with a very slow focus in live view.
  6. Lastly, the price of the Canon EOS 60d is on a higher scale when compared with other similar variants in the market.

Customer Reviews:

The EOS 60d manufactured by Canon is of great use to both amateurs and mid-level professionals. It has an excellent battery life, bright and high resolution LCD screen, top-notch in-camera features and quite a tough built. As a result, you can win hands on premium quality pictures every-time you shoot using your Canon 60d. Additionally, the product is highly durable. Apart from the camera’s annoying interface conventions and lesser number of focal points, the product is worth the buy. In a nutshell, the Canon EOS 60d is definitely recommended for all.

Fujifilm_xt1

Fujifilm has launched an all-new type of compact camera system. It comes fully loaded with high-end advanced camera features. For instance, the Fujifilm XT1 carries a 16.3 Megapixel APS-C X-Trans CMOS II sensor lens. It is further complemented with a special EXR Processor II. This addition benefits in the production of high-resolution snapshots at once. For better image production, the XT1 is crafted with an intelligent Hybrid Autofocus system. This facilitates the camera lens to acquire focus in a snap. The camera contains both manual and customizable buttons that aid all users with a simple interface.

Would you be happy to own a SLR camera that allows you to quick share your pictures and videos? If yes then the Fujifilm XT1 is certainly a great buy for you. The camera comes with an in-built Wi-Fi system that allows you to share images with any Android or iOS devices on the go. Following this is the camera’s full HD 1080p video recording feature. With the all new XT1 in your hand, you can now shoot videos using multiple frame rates. The presence of a 2.5mm microphone input ensures that all audio recordings are received in its top-most quality. In fact, there is an optional external microphone slot fitted to the camera for an even better audio quality.

Fujifilm_xt1After the success of the X-Pro1, Fujifilm has constantly made efforts to introduce a higher version of mirror-less camera. Without a doubt, the XT1 has successfully rolled in attention from a broader audience. Here’s a quick glance at the pros and cons of the very new Fujifilm XT1.

Pros:

  1. Finest quality of images – Integrated features of 16.3 Megapixel APS-C CMOS image sensor along-with X-trans makes the Fujifilm XT1 camera one of a kind. The special sensor is pre-formatted with a random pixel pattern (X-Trans). This wipes out the need of getting an optical low-pass filter fitted to the camera lens. As a result, you can easily regulate the sharpness and resolution of images. The X-Trans sensor also plays a big-league role in reducing noise in images. Usually when shooting in the dark, pictures come out unclear, not-so-smooth and a little too noisy. The X-Trans feature improves the quality of pictures even when clicked in dim lights.
  2. Quick camera start-up time – Nothing is more frustrating than waiting for your camera to start-up or process images, isn’t it? Well, you will not have to worry about delayed start-up time with the Fujifilm XT1 in hand. A special addition of EXR Processor II speeds up the camera performance effectively. Cherry on the top – incorporation of the Intelligent Hybrid AF system encourage quick autofocus performance in as less as 0.08 seconds. EXR Processor II puts both forms of focusing methods into use – contrast detection and phase detection. As a result, the focal function of a camera improves by leaps and bounds.
  3. Better Viewfinder – A crucial part of any SLR camera is its viewfinder. It helps the photographer in having a clear view of the object to be filmed. The Fujifilm X-T1 has a ‘Real Time Viewfinder’ crafted to it. There is a 2,360k-dot OLED display fitted along-with a considerably high magnification capacity of 0.77x. This camera lets you take ease in viewing objects from a 31 degree angle view. Apart from the technical features, the use of graphical interface in the real time viewfinder simplifies the work of a photographer.
  4. Wi-Fi Connection – Fujifilm X-T1is undoubtedly a product of the brand’s master creation. Since people these days are addicted to social networking and sharing images, the XT1 comes with a super-fast in-built Wi-Fi connection. With this feature working, you can instantly share your collected snaps and videos to any Android or iOS device. Installing the Fujifilm Camera Remote App will benefit you even further. You can browse through the videos and pictures in your cell-phone and get the same transferred to the camera as well. Other than sharing, the app functions for numerous other activities like film simulation, flash controls, shutter release, enable white balance modes and allow adjustments in the exposure settings.
  5. Movie Recording – Very less SLRs actually let you shoot high definition videos. Well, this is certainly not the case with the Fujifilm XT1. Instead, the camera supports full HD 1080p video recording using multiple frame rates and formats. It supports a maximum of 60fps. Doing movie recording in the Fujifilm XT1 is easier than expected. You can tweak with the sharpness levels and proceed with regular changes easily.
  6. Effective Camera Design – Durable, classic and useful are the best words that describe the camera of Fujifilm XT1 best. The camera is designed with customizable buttons, easy-to-access Q menu, dual command dials and numerous other camera setting options like white balance, file settings and ISO. All these features make it a very convenient product.

Cons:

  1. Unlike other variants, the Fujifilm XT1 lacks the presence of rotational LCD display. As a result, better shooting using varied-angle display cannot be executed.
  2. Although the camera HD movie recording up to 60fps, the overall quality of the clips fails to impress much.
  3. The Fujifilm XT1 has both manual controls and automatic customized buttons. Even then, users encounter difficulty in handling some of the controls.
  4. The feature of Geo-tagging could have been a little better.
  5. Fujifilm X-T1 lacks the presence of a built-in flash. This leaves an impact on the quality of images when clicked in the dark.
  6. Nevertheless, the high-end camera manufactured by Fujifilm is a bit over-priced. It’s certainly not for the novice but you will be pleasantly surprised at the quality and performance from this one.

Customer Reviews:

Fujifilm XT1 is certainly an solid product in the genre of dSLR cameras. All controls and buttons in the camera are fully operational and can be used with ease. It has a bright and large LCD display for an instant beautiful view of the images clicked. The resolution of the camera is also on a higher scale. The XT1 is indeed one of the best mirrorless cameras Fujifilm has ever crafted. Though the camera comes with a not-so-impressive battery life, it is surely a great tool to capture the mesmeric landscapes, family pictures, wildlife snaps and even photos clicked in low light. Shelling out for the Fujifilm XT1 is worth every penny.

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