When Fujifilm launched the X system in January 2012, it did so with an unusually high-end body – the X-Pro1. With its unique hybrid optical/electronic viewfinder, solid metal body and analogue dial-led control philosophy, it was clearly targeted towards professionals and keen enthusiasts looking for an updated take on the classic rangefinder concept. The X-Pro1 was generally well-received, but its price was always likely to limit its appeal. Fujifilm’s new baby, the X-E1, aims to broaden the line’s appeal to wider range of enthusiasts, and will compete directly with the likes of the Sony Alpha NEX-7 and Olympus OM-D E-M5.
X-E1 – the more affordable X-Pro1
The X-E1 is in essence a slimmed-down X-Pro1, with the large, complex and expensive hybrid finder replaced by a purely-electronic viewfinder. Not any old EVF though – it uses a 2.36M dot OLED unit, out-speccing the X-Pro1′s 1.44M dot LCD finder. In return its rear screen is slightly downgraded in terms of both size and resolution, to a still-respectable 2.8″ 460k dot LCD – according to Fujifilm this is necessary to keep the camera’s size down. The result is a compact body that’s broadly similar in size to both the much-loved FinePix X100, and its most obvious competitors like the E-M5 and NEX-7.
The X-E1 gets a few new features relative to the X-Pro1, commensurate with its class. There’s a little built-in pop-up flash, a 2.5mm stereo microphone socket for movie recording, and the ability to use an electronic shutter release cable in addition to the signature threaded shutter release button. But otherwise it’s near-identical to the X-Pro1, using the same 16MP X-Trans CMOS sensor and EXR Pro image processor, and almost exactly the same control layout and interface.
See full review on www.dpreview.com
So how do I feel about my new cameras? Well I’m delighted with both of them. I was more or less able to predict how the XE1 would perform based on my ownership of existing X cameras and my familiarity with the brand. But the OMD was something of a revelation, I really didn’t expect a micro 4/3 camera to produce images which were often difficult to distinguish from those of the Fuji, even in low light. There really is very little between them. Fuji grain is quite fine and the images are very smooth, but you really only notice that at pixel peeping level or in very large prints. The native auto white balance of the Fuji is slightly cooler than that of the OMD in bright daylight (and vice versa indoors or under artificial lighting) but both are equally pleasing and can be tweaked to taste in-camera. Much is said of the beauty of Fuji colours and also of the pleasing colour rendition from the OMD. Again, I like both equally and they can be adjusted to suit you, or in my case to perfectly match each other on occasions when I’m shooting both cameras together. It should be mentioned that many OMD images floating about the Internet have a rather orange tinge to them – that is easily managed in camera and can be turned down to suit your needs. Overall I found the image quality of both cameras to be quite close in most scenarios, with the Fuji having a small advantage at very high ISO levels and with fine detail at pixel level (the XE1 lacks a high pass filter). The Fuji applies less aggressive sharpening at standard in-camera settings than the OMD and I will be reducing the in-camera sharpening on the Olympus from now on. The default noise reduction on the Fuji appears less aggressive than that of the Olympus. Dynamic range is a strength of Fuji X cameras and has historically been a weakness of Micro 4/3 sensors – but not any more – even pushing up the in-camera contrast on the OMD and shooting in harsh sunlight revealed no particular weaknesses.
So which camera do I prefer? That’s quite a difficult question, both are capable of producing outstanding images. After all, most people do after all judge cameras according to the finer points of the pictures they produce, often at the expense of overall performance. And it’s the latter where the Olympus really excels. A few weeks ago I created a blog post entitled “Fujifilm XE-1 – Will it Be Love?” and in response to that I can say “a fondness”. In the room with the snake the Fuji really struggled to lock focus at times and the slight lag of the EVF added to my frustrations. However the OMD nailed the shots easily (despite having a cheap and slow zoom on at the time). And of course the OMD is not only faster but is also weather proofed which is a great bonus for me, amongst its other performance attributes. So whilst I greatly admire the XE1 for its outstanding images, classic looks and wonderful build quality, it’s rather like a luxury saloon car – pleasurable to handle providing you’re not in too much of a hurry. The OMD on the other hand is a bit like a highly specc’d modern sports car – a little sharper around the edges but your journey will be fast and fun. I can see my infatuation with the OMD continuing and thus far it is the camera I reach for the most, but both cameras have a firm place in my kitbag.
See comparison and pictures on lindsaydobsonphotography.com
This is the X-E1′s, Fuji’s latest compact system camera. It’s an addition to Fuji’s premium X range and is the second camera in the series to feature interchangeable lenses. It features the same 16 million pixel sensor, processor and lens mount as the popular X Pro1. Looking at the two cameras side by side reveals lots of similarities, but the X-E1 is smaller, partly due to the lack of the hybrid optical and electronic viewfinder found on the X Pro1.
Instead, the X-E1 uses an electronic only device. While some may object to not having the option to use an optical viewfinder, in practice we’ve found that the high resolution device is more than adequate, and in fact even preferable in some cases to using the optical finder which is a part of the X Pro 1’s hybrid device.
There’s no mode dial on the X-E1, instead you control various parameters via an aperture ring on the lens, shutter speed dial on the top of the camera and an exposure compensation dial here.
Although there’s no “fully automatic” mode, you can get pretty close by setting both the aperture and shutter speed wheel to automatic.
The body of the camera is fairly large, with a nice chunky grip and an imitation leather covering. These make it pretty easy to shoot with the camera one-handed if you need to. On the back of the camera there’s also a fairly extensive range of buttons. The majority of regularly used settings can be accessed via this Q button. It’s recessed into the grip, which makes the camera nice and sleek but unfortunately can make it a little tricky to find the button when using the camera with the EVF. You can change the drive mode via this button – so you can choose between single shooting, the various bracketing modes and continuous shooting. Right at the bottom here you’ll also find video mode – there’s no direct buttons on the body to activate video shooting, which may be a little frustrating if you like to shoot movies often. This button on the bottom is what you need to use to change the autofocus point. After pressing it, use the arrow keys here to choose the point you want. It’s fairly easy to use – even when holding the camera up to the eye – but a touchscreen would have made selecting a point much quicker. The rear LCD screen is slightly smaller than the X Pro1′s, and a has a much lower resolution at 460 thousand dots. That said, it’s still a good performer with reflections and glare kept to a minimum, even in bright light. It can also be seen from a wide range of angles, so although it’s not a vari-angle or articulating screen, you can still shoot reasonably well from awkward positions. An eye sensor next to the EVF recognises when you lift the camera to your eye to automatically switch off the LCD screen and activate the EVF. Handily, if you hit this View Mode button, you can switch the Eye Sensor on or off, meaning if you only want to use the EVF or the LCD screen for some reason, it won’t keep switching between.
One of the key criticisms of the X Pro1 was its focusing speed. Fuji has addressed that issue with a new firmware version, available for both the X-Pro1 and already installed on the X-E1 as standard. This significantly improves focusing time, making it as quick and easy to use as many other compact system cameras on the market.
We anticipated great things from the Fuji X-E1, since it shares the same sensor as the excellent X Pro1. Happily, we’ve found that the camera is capable of producing images which are punchy, sharp and full of detail. The new high quality kit lens – an 18-55mm optic with a maximum aperture of f/2.8 at the widest end – is a great addition to the line-up and makes the whole system a lot more flexible for use everyday.
See full article on Digital Camera World
I have been using the Fuji X-E1 since the official release date of the camera on the 17th of November. Rather than showing you performance charts or trying to convince you that this camera is the best in the world just because I love it, I will first give you the context in which I decided to buy an X-E1: what other cameras I am/have been using, what i was looking for exactly in a new camera, what other brands/models I did consider, and why I ended up choosing the Fuji in the end. In my opinion, these are an important part of any review, because what matters for me might not be what matters for YOU. All cameras come with pros and cons, so you need to be aware of the trade-offs that come with each model, in order to make the best investment decision for YOU……
Conclusion: The Fuji X-E1is a beautifully designed camera, aiming first at the photographer rather than the geek inside us. Its command dials and intuitive Q menu invite us to free our mind from the unnecessary and take more time to think of our pictures instead of the technical details. It produces outstanding images even at high ISO, and the in-camera JPEG engine renders files with sharp details and vivid colors, depending on the “film simulation” mode that you choose. However, no camera is perfect, and the X-E1 is to be avoided if you are allergic to manual focusing, as the autofocus may struggle in low light. Also, as a camera designed primarily for photographers, the X-E1 is light on video modes… In the end, it all comes down to what is important for you, and if you are looking for a lightweight camera with outstanding image quality in all light conditions for still subjects, the Fuji X-E1 is exactly what you need.
See on grittymonkey.wordpress.com
In our opinion, the Fujifilm X-E1 is one of the most — if not the most — beautiful digital cameras on the market today, on par with the X-Pro1 and the X100. Someone clearly forgot to tell Fujifilm that digital cameras aren’t supposed to look this good.
The X-E1 is also a true joy to use, especially for photographers who love shooting with older manual film cameras that feature similar designs and controls. If that describes you, you finally have an even more affordable option than the X-Pro1 to cross the analog-to-digital bridge to.
At $1000, the camera is $400 cheaper than its higher-tier sibling. However, what you lose in a major feature — the hybrid viewfinder — you gain in portability due to its smaller size and lighter weight.
With a DSLR-sized sensor at its core and the same manual features at your fingertips, the X-E1 makes for a fine DSLR replacement for everyday photography. Just make sure you can live with the slightly slower AF and the lack of an OVF. If you’re sure you can, then go out and buy this camera — it’s worth every penny.
See full review on www.petapixel.com
The Fuji X-Pro1was a hit. But at $1700 for the body alone, it was (and still is) bonkers expensive. The new X-E1 is Fuji’s reaction to that. With a pared down body and new kit lens, Fuji could maintain its enthusiast appeal—and attract a broader market.
What Is It.
Another Leica-lookalike mirrorless cam from Fuji. Basically, it’s the X-Pro1 minus an optical viewfinder, plus a pop-up flash, and for a lot less money—$1000, body-only.
Who’s It For?
Purist photographers who want high image quality over versatility.
We love the plentiful bracketing options. You can bracket exposure, ISO, dynamic range, and even Fuji’s film simulations (essentially color profile presets).The shutter-speed wheel is a bit tough to rotate. You usually need two fingers to turn it, where it would be great to just use your thumb.Fuji’s lens lineup is limited. Only a 18mm f/2, 35mm f/1.4, and 60mm f/2.4 are available, with another 6 or so lenses arriving in the next year, according to this lens roadmap. ‘Til now, at least, all of Fuji’s lenses have been of great quality at moderate prices.
Should You Buy It?
Absolutely, for stellar images. But not if you want bells and whistles. This isn’t a camera for video, for in-camera effects, wi-fi, or scene modes. It’s for unadulterated photography, with fantastic image quality and control. The caveats include mediocre autofocus, crappy video mode, and weird RAW noise patterns. But this is a good low-cost alternative to the X-Pro1. Aside from that model’s better build quality, are nearly zero qualities that we miss on this lower-priced camera. If you’re in the market for this, consider a few alternatives—there’s the Sony NEX-7, which is due for a refresh in 2013, and could be a bargain. The Sony NEX-6 is definitely more versatile, but it’s slightly behind in control scheme. Then, the Olympus OMD-EM5 rules the world of auto-focus—but it can’t match the sheer image quality of the X-E1.
See on gizmodo.com
The X-E1 is touted as an affordable alternative to the X-Pro1, but is it good enough to replace it? See how it performs.
Superb image quality and low-light performance; faster AF performance than X-Pro1; good ergonomics; versatile pop-up flash.
Lack of a dedicated movie button; AF accuracy needs to be improved; pricier than competing models.
Following the success of the X-Pro1, Fujifilm has launched yet another mirrorless interchangeable lens camera (ILC), the Fujifilm X-E1. Slated as a more affordable model, this 16.3-megapixel, APS-C ILC now comes in a more compact form factor and sees the inclusion of a pop-up flash and an electronic viewfinder (instead of the hybrid viewfinder in the X-Pro1). Other improvements include a diopter adjustment control for bespectacled shutterbugs, as well as an improved autofocus (AF) algorithm that promises faster AF speeds. Capable of capturing 6 frames-per-second (fps) in burst mode shooting, the X-E1 also records 1080p full-HD videos at 24 fps. The Fujifilm X-E1 with XF 18-55mm F2.8-4 R LM OIS zoom lens now retails at S$2,099 in Singapore stores.
The Fujifilm X-E1 is a very capable performer and seems like a downsized version of the X-Pro1. It features the same image quality and handling as the X-Pro1 but at a lower price point. It also has other useful improvements such as faster autofocus and superb high-ISO noise performance that most enthusiasts would appreciate. Overall, we think that the X-E1 will appeal to those who’ve been holding out on the company’s flagship mirrorless OIC due to its high price, as we as to serious enthusiasts who appreciate the mix of retro styling and manual controls.
CNET Editors’ rating: 4 / 5 stars
Image Quality: 9
See full review on asia.cnet.com
Then it sunk in and I added that other companies had performed ‘major rethinks about the future of upper level digital cameras: like Olympus with its retro OM-D and Nikon with its bare bones N1.’
It was obvious that Fujifilm had done ‘a mighty rethink about gaps in the pro market and come up with a camera that has some pretty clever answers to some profound questions.’ Since then there have been other models in the X-mount line and the XE-1 is the latest.
Fujifilm XE-1 Review Verdict
well above average.
Why you’d buy the Fujifilm XE-1:
you have the skills to exploit it.
Why you wouldn’t:
the LCD screen does not tilt.
The X-mount series of cameras goes from strength to strength. This sits easily into the lineup.
A fine successor to the X-Pro1.
See on digital-photography-school.com
Fujifilm X-E1: Verdict
While it might be tempting to think of the X-E1 as a stripped back X-Pro1, that does it something of a disservice in that the X-E1 is a great camera in its own right. Gifted with the same premium grade construction and finish, the X-E1 feels more refined and balanced than it’s more expensive sibling. While some may lament the removal of the hybrid viewfinder found in the X-Pro1, the truth is that the X-E1’s sharper, crisper EVF more than makes up for this, though the rear screen remains, at 2.8in and 460k-dots, somewhat underpowered for a camera of this price. Our only other issue is the autofocus performance and while this has certainly been improved from the X-Pro1, it’s still not as fast or as responsive as what’s offered by other CSCs. These issues aside, and the X-E1 is a joy to shoot with. By far the biggest selling point of the X-E1, however, is its sensor. The quality of the results and the detail rendered is excellent, delivering images that are some of, if not the best we’ve seen from an APS-C sized sensor.
Scores In Detail
Build Quality 8/10
Design & Features 8/10
Image Quality 9/10
See full review on www.trustedreviews.com