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Fujifilm stays the course with the rangefinder-style X100F

Create: 01/21/2017 - 23:03
Fujifilm X100F

HIGHLIGHTS

  • New 24.3-MP X-Trans III CMOS sensor lacks a low-pass filter
  • Records Full HD 1920x1080 video
  • Film-emulation mode now includes Acros black-and-white

It was nearly five years ago in 2011 that Fujifilm reinvigorated its digital camera lineup with the X100.

What made the X100 so popular was its retro styling and a rangefinder style optical-electronic viewfinder that the camera-buying public loved.

Up to that point, Fujiflm had produced quite a few digital point and shoots and several DSLRs that were based on Nikon bodies fittied with a Fujifilm sensor.

The X100 was Fujifilm’s first X-series camera and paved the way for an entire system of mirrorless cameras.

The X100F is the fourth camera in the series, and the things that made its three predecessors popular continue with the new model

By the way, figuring out the model names is easy:

  • X100 = Original
  • X100S(econd)
  • X100T(hird)
  • X100F(ourth)

The X100F has a new APS-C-sized sensor – the 24.3-MP X-Trans III CMOS sensor that does away with the low-pass filter.

The ISO range is 200-12,800, which can be extended to 100-51,200. That’s a slight improvement on the X100T, which had a base ISO range of 200-6,400.

The X100F has both electronic and mechanical shutters with speed ranges of four seconds to 1/4,000 and 30 seconds to 1/32,000, respectively. The “Bulb” mode can keep the mechanical shutter open for up to 60 minutes.

The camera can shoot up to eight frames per second. It records RAW, JPG and videos to an SD card. The X100F records Full HD 1920 x 1080 video, although clips are limited to 14 minutesm, while HD 1280 x 720 video can be recorded for up to 29 minutes.

The X100F has a shutter-speed dial on the top deck – right where you would expect it next to the shutter release. This model now has an ISO selector built into the shutter speed dial, which operates almost identically to a film camera.

The X100T’s f/2.0 23mm lens is back. It has eight elements in six groups, including one molded glass aspherical element. Because it’s an APS-C camera, the 23mm lens provides a 35mm full-frame equivalent field of view.

In addition to the small built-in electronic flash, the camera also has a hot shoe for an external unit.

HYBRID VIEWFINDER

Of course, you can’t make mention of the X100F without discussing the viewfinder. The camera has a traditional optical viewfinder with an electronic overlay that displays exposure information, as well as the focus spot.

Using the lever on the front of the camera under the shutter speed dial activates the electronic viewfinder. A small blind slips into place, preventing light from entering the front of the optical viewfinder.

In another mode when using the optical viewfinder, a small section appears as an electronic overlay display in the lower right corner. This can be used to allow for precise manual focusing, when not using autofocus.

The hybrid viewfinder has focus peaking to aid manual focusing.

There also is a fixed 3.0-inch LCD monitor for those who prefer Live View for taking photos and video, navigating menus and reviewing images. The LCD monitor is not touch-enabled.

For those who want to have the film look but not shoot film, there are several modes that emulate Fujifilm’s popular black and white and and color transparency films.

To keep things in focus, the X100F has 91 autofocus points, nearly double the 49 points of the X100T.

DIMENSIONS

The original X100 was a svelte camera, and Fujifilm didn’t do anything to change that with the X100F. It is approximately 5 x 3 x 2 inches (126.5 x 74.8 x 52.4mm) and weighs 16.5 ounces (469 grams). The new camera is about 0.1 inches larger overall and weighs one ounce more than the X100T. In other words, the two cameras are roughly the same size and weight.

The X100F is available in classic silver or black, beginning February 2017 for US$1,299.95.

About the Author

Mike Elek is a longtime journalist and was one of the original editors for The Wall Street Journal Online. He also has worked as a reporter and editor in Pittsburgh; Philadelphia; Vineland, N.J.; Poughkeepsie, N.Y.; New York City; and Hong Kong. He is a U.S. Air Force veteran. He shoots with film and digital cameras.