Remember the X Files ? Gosh, I loved that show. It was so creative. Shrewd. Cool. Addictive.
X has been fiercely popular with camera makers these past two years, and has apparently brought good fortune to most models it labelled. Panasonic GX-1, Canon G1X (confusion, anyone ?) Fuji X Pro 1, Sony NEX, Samsung NX, just to name a few…
I received the Fuji X10 yesterday. Please bear in mind I’m using a borrowed computer with zilch imaging software installed, so my photo contribution is pretty limited. But quick and dirty, it looks like this
Awfully sexy, right ?
You bet it is. Right out of the box the sheer wealth of menu options and different modes is enough to drive you up the wall and make you want to pack it right back and return it to sender. However, once you start actually making pictures with it, the impression swiftly turns around, and pretty soon you find yourself fondling it with a dumb, smitten look on your face.
And since the sensor size physically limits background blur inherently, the camera has a smart (albeit gimmicky) mode than enhances it via software, the “Pro Focus” feature. Used within reason, I find it yields pretty pleasing results.
So is the image quality on of those pictures on par with what I usually post ? Of course not. We’re talking SMALL, physically limited by the laws of physics, sensor here. But given that this camera fits in a coat pocket, sports a 28 to 112mm equivalent zoom with F:2-2.8 aperture and delivers very acceptable noise at ISO 1600 (and not much more noticeable at ISO 3200), the results are nothing short of astonishing. I’ve processed the above shots in iPhoto and that’s why they suck. If I’d had my usual Photoshop + Snapseed team available, they would look a world better.
It reasserts the fact that a larger sensor is ALWAYS an asset. That being said, Fuji pulled a winner here. It’s the kind of device that you always want to have with you and that can be incredibly versatile and useful once you learn to use it. It pretty much negates the need to take anything bigger/better with you on a trip, for example. Truly, unless you want to do specific portrait work (my main alley), or make huge landscape photography prints, it could be all the camera you’ll ever need.
I’d like to try and not buy anything for 100 days, using the X10 in the meantime. That’s a little over 3 months, and a looong time by digital camera standards. By then X-E1 prices will have settled down a bit further, Fuji MIGHT have added focus peaking to the camera via firmware, and maybe not rumored a faster AF equipped X-E2 ?? Waiting would be a very smart thing to do.