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The original Fujifilm X100 is a 10-year-old camera. It can best any current smartphone, and rival some modern cameras as well. You can read my full blog post review on this camera here:
Or alternatively, you can watch my full YouTube Video review of this camera right here:
It's not a perfect camera, it has negatives or cons. However, the price-to-quality ratio is incredible. It's great for beginners, people on a budget, or people starting to take their craft more seriously.
So, whether you're new to photography, or you're considering testing and playing with the rangefinder-style cameras Fujifilm has to offer, here are 5 reasons to start your photography journey with the Fujifilm X100.
1. The Image Quality
The X100 has a 12mp sensor APS-C sensor, and perhaps that might not sound like a lot to you, but the image quality of this camera is incredible. The colour science is great and the film simulations are just a joy to use.
I understand that for some people the convenience and ease of use of smartphones matter, but what does not matter is how new or expensive your smartphone is, the x100 is just an order of magnitude better than any smartphone ever made. Whether that matters to you or not, that's another subject.
The limited selection of film simulations can be a good way to get you started manipulating colour and creating custom profiles. And you still have RAW files if you want to go that route as well.
2. The Hybrid Rangefinder Style Viewfinder
This one is shared with the xpro1 as well, If you've watched my videos, then you know that I personally prefer rangefinder-style cameras.
Having the option to choose between the electronic and optical viewfinder is all that I ask, Living inside the electronic viewfinder on blinding bright sunny days, with a custom display menu that can show you the settings that you want to see.
Or choose the optical viewfinder and try to shoot old school like the film days, making the experience more rewarding, and saving battery as well.
For people like me, the viewfinder placement can make or break a camera. Last year I purchased the X-T3 and although I think it's an incredible camera and the best bang for the buck that Fujifilm offers, I could not deal with the location of the viewfinder. And that is just my personal preference.
3. The Leaf Shutter
All the X100 cameras have a leaf shutter, this is a special shutter type that is built into the lens, not the body of the camera. The most common benefits of the leaf shutter are:
- A vibration-free capture.
- Being able to sync flash at faster speeds.
- The absolute silent capture.
You might think that's not important, what's the big deal of having a shutter noise? But close-up photos are harder to get if the camera and your shooting style are intrusive and disrespectful.
I personally really dislike YouTubers making videos about invading people's privacy, shoving cameras in their faces and trying to be as disrespectful as possible.
So to me, the shutter noise matters, the leaf shutter gives you the quality and results of a mechanical shutter, without the setbacks of an electronic shutter, things like the massive rolling shutter, the jello effect etc.
4. The Built-In ND Filter
This is a big one my opinion. The x100 has a built-in 3 stops ND filter, and this really matters with cameras that have a limited range in shutter speeds.
I mentioned this in the xpro1 review, On a night sunny day, trying To shoot wide open with the 23mm F2, at ISO 100, and 1/4000th shutter speed (which is the max shutter speed for the x100 and xpro1 I might add) Make it really difficult to not overexpose your images.
And of course, the reasonable thing is to just not shoot wide open, I get it... but I want to have the option, and I want that to be my choice. I like control over my images.
And I understand that interchangeable lens cameras have never had ND filters before, but that does not mean that it should be that way... Just food for thought.
5. The Form-factor: Portability, Weight & Size
The X100 is extremely light, small, and portable, and for people like me, that is important.
My entire year abroad working as a photographer in Japan is proof of that example. My X100F became an extension of myself, and no matter where I went, the camera was there with me, riding the bullet train, having lunch, or just sitting at a cafe while editing some photos.
And when a camera is so light, portable, small, and a joy to use. Then you will use it, you will bring it with you, and you will check that you are carrying it before you leave your home, just like we do with keys, wallets and smartphones. And if you don't, then perhaps you don't really like photography as much as you think.
Bonus Reason: The Price
And a bonus reason is the price, the camera is fairly inexpensive compared to:
- The MSRP price of the X100 camera when it was released in 2011.
- The price of any other brand new camera today.
It can be a little difficult to find, and you do have to consider the condition and what's included, accessories etc. I bought mine for $450 Canadian dollars. And I do think that's somewhat reasonable for the quality that you get.
So, whether you're considering starting your photography journey, or you already started and are considering this camera to hone your skills and have it as an everyday carry the x100 is a great option, and I highly recommend it.
This is a summary of my YouTube Video, you can watch the whole piece linked here: