My style, my clients and my way of working have changed a lot since I started out as a professional photographer about eight years ago … and so has technology. Therefor I started a major gear bag audit a couple of months ago. You can’t believe how much time, research, testing and thought, I’ve put into this so far and I still have some decisions to make. But I’m almost there. Since so many people have been sending me questions about gear choices, I thought I’d share my thought process with you in a couple of blog posts. Writing all these things down, might even help me make my final decisions. Let’s start with what has become my main camera over the last six months: the Fujifilm X-Pro1. I dropped some random pictures shot with the X-Pro1 in this post. A lot has been said about this camera since it came out: some very positive stuff as well as some serious rants. So there are very polarised opinions and I can definitely related to both points of view. It took me three full weeks of testing, a lot of frustration and a major firmware update (v2.0 changed a lot) before completely adopting the Fuji X-system.
There are still some things that don’t speak in favor of the Fuji.
Here are my biggest issues:
- Autofocus has come to an acceptable level for most uses but it’s still not as good as the latest m4/3 cameras.
- It’s not the cheapest camera in it’s class
- The range of lenses and accessories is still limited compared to systems that have been on the market for a longer time.
- I’d rather have a faster flash sync speed than 1/160
- The electronic viewfinder could be better
- There’s room for improvement in the way Lightroom handles the Fuji RAW-files….
See on bertstephani.com
Let’s see … I know I’m many months late with my impressions of the Fuji X-Pro 1. I’m sure there were “reviews” before the camera was even released. Even if there weren’t I’m sure there were thoughts – probably numbering in the thousands – on forum sites. Quite honestly, I didn’t read any of them. Then again, I never really do. How is the experience of a retired engineer or a forum-whore-turned-blogger going to help me? They’re not. I got the chance to play with the X100 when I was in Berlin last summer. Loved how quiet it was. I wasn’t, however, so happy with its AF focusing ability. It hunted like the old Nikon AF stuff I shot back in the day with D-series lenses. It wasn’t quite the same but it hunted. In daylight it seemed fine but I wanted more than fine. I compared – at the time – everything AF to the way my Canons performed. Now, since I’m shooting Nikon digital, I compare everything to that. And that’s pretty spectacular. Interestingly I was having “issues” with my digital rangefinder, the venerable yet outdated M9. There was a time when the M9 was my ambient light body as an accoutrement to the Canons I was using. For some reason the SD cards would lock up. I’d get that annoying red “writing light” more than I cared to see it. Anyone that knows me knows it wasn’t because I was reaching the end of the buffer either. It’s one thing to happen when you’re shooting for yourself but I also shot that camera system for clients, too. If it weren’t for clients, I wouldn’t be able to make as many personal photographs. Each is important yet when someone’s paying you to shoot your equipment must work 100% of the time.
With the M9 that wasn’t exactly the case. I’m not an M9 hater. I’m not a Leica hater. I just think they’ve done boneheaded marketing moves but I still like the company. I mean … I was one of the original beta-testers of the M9 when it was the P864. I know I’ve made almost as many frames with that camera system as anyone on the planet. That folder has in excess of 100,000 photos in it. Personal street, stuff I shot at the request of engineers on the original design … and work stuff. The M9’s that went through my hands saw everything from street photos all over the world to Metalica to The Prince and Princess’ visit to California last year. Speaking of which I was overjoyed that the M9 worked flawlessly on that assignment……
Supposed named after one of the three peaks overlooking the village, that when viewed from a certain angle, resembled a Hog’s Back, or from a certain Captain Hogg, commander of nearby Fort Michel near TorDoone. In any case, apart from a morning hike to the Madonna and Child Falls through the stunning ancient forest littered with moss covered boulders and ferns, it pretty much rained the whole time we were there. Visibility was barely ten metres at times, as the mountain village of Hogsback was shrouded in cloud. Whilst the novelty of running around ‘breathing in cloud’ entertained us for a bit, the damp and the grey soon got old and we spent the time curled up beside the fire watching the resident pooch entertain himself with a soggy pine cone. It wasn’t until a 1000 km drive and 48 hours later in Clarens that we finally outrun the rain clouds, to be greeted for the first time in days by glorious sunshine and blue skies….
See on handcarryonly.com
We previously put the Fujifilm X Pro 1 against the Sony NEX 6. As a clarification once again, the reason why we use the same exposure for each camera vs a, “Balanced” exposure is for you to get a feeling of the metering of the cameras in manual mode: which is something many users will do in order to acquire better images. In these exposures, you are also able to gauge just how the individual sensors perform. In my tests and in my personal analysis with one of Sony’s reps, we both concluded that at the same exposures the X Pro 1 will retain more detail in the highlights but the NEX 6 will retain more information in the shadows. The histograms were about accurate but let’s be honest: if we made the histograms perfectly and totally alike, then there will be no differences between the images. These images are an informal comparison of metering and image quality between the two cameras: In each set of images, each camera was set to the same exposure value in order to see how each camera will perform. The cameras photographed landscapes, and exposures in a situation like this are critical. No post production was done to these files besides sizing down to 72 DPI.
- The X Pro 1′s out of camera colors are more appealing to my eyes. However, both cameras can put out more than versatile enough RAW files.
- These two cameras were compared because the X Pro 1 and the XE-1 (the real competitor to the NEX 6), have the same sensor. In this case, it is sensor + metering vs sensor + metering.
- The X Pro 1 files are sharper in my opinion
- The NEX leans more towards the warmer side of the spectrum while the X Pro 1 leans more towards the cooler side.
- For landscape photography, this means that processing the images in post will require slightly different approaches due to the way the cameras color balance and how they meter. Since Sony captures more detail in the shadows, one should probably shoot a couple of extra photos overexposed if they intend on merging the files together. It is vice versa with the X Pro 1. But to be very honest, the files from each camera are so versatile that you can actually perhaps shoot three images (one balanced, one over and one under exposed) and still retain more than enough detail to work with.
See on www.thephoblographer.com
I already own the Fuji 35 f/1.4 but sometimes I want a true manual focus lens and while the latest firmware update did wonders for manual focus, nothing beats a real manual focus lens. I picked up an MD ROKKOR-X 50mm f/1.4 at a local camera show for $15 two weeks ago. The lens is of all metal construction with little wear, no fungus or scratches… and boy does it love to be mounted on my X-Pro1. This lens was first produced (I believe) in 1977 and 35 years later it is a great performer on the X-Pro1. It is very sharp and renders the out of focus foreground and background with no harshness and the bokeh is also great. Mine seems to produce just what I was looking for when shooting in B&W mode on the X-Pro1. Below are two photos I took this evening while catching up on some television shows I had recorded. The area where my TV resides is quite dark, only one lamp and the light from the boob tube for this shot. ISO was 1600 f/1.4 @ 1/30s. If you are looking for cheap manual focus lens I have three to recommend, well, actualy two. I have the ROKKOR 58mm f/1.2 which you will find on eBay anywhere from $400 to $700 depending on condition of the lens… but let’s get to the cheap and good stuff: MD ROKKOR-X 50mm f/1.4 on eBay from $15 to $60 MD W-ROKKOR 28mm F/2.8 on eBay for even less. I paid $10 for mine! Here’s a color and B&W sample from the 50mm. By the way, that’s the 28mm in the photo. Both lenses had the lens hoods on them when I bought them. Just and FYI for those you who still enjoy using a real manual focus lens every now and then, check out the ROKKORs, they are plentiful and quite cheap on the used market.. but the prices are rising because people are becoming aware of how well they work on MFT as well as cameras like the X-Pro1. Oh, the adapter I use is from Rainbow Imaging.. it is one of the cheap ones and the fit of lens to adapter and adapter to the body of the x-Pro1 is as tight and perfect as anyone might wish. Here’s a link to the adapter, if you are interested.. it is currently selling for $21. Fuji X-Pro1 lens adapter, Minolta MD MC lens to Fuji X-Pro1 Adapter.
See on forum.getdpi.com
As I work in the Photographic industry, I did my bi-annual stint at Photokina earlier this year. It is a long and very busy show, with, as it turns out, both an upside and a downside. The upside is that you get to meet, and chat to, many photographers and photography enthusiasts from different countries and walks of life, with equally varied opinions and viewpoints on their equipment.The downside is that this almost always end up costing me money, as a group of strangers enthusing about something is a surefire way to spark my interest. I arrived in Cologne this year with a vague hankering for something new, for something to renew my purely amateur interest in purely amateur image making. I used to own a hasselblad X-Pan (my first proper camera in fact) and I have never found anything since that gave such enjoyment or satisfaction to use. I left Cologne this year with a complete Fuji X-Pro1 outfit, having heard nothing but good reviews, along with various comparisons to my beloved X-Pan, and having gone very slightly mad during the week long show and plainly forgotten the value of english currency. So do I regret this act of spontaneity, this involuntary emptying of my bank account? Not at all, and here’s why. The Fuji is an absolute gem. I have had this week off work and have been out three times to give the new camera a work out…..
See on www.robertwhite.co.uk
- solid and high quality casing,
- very good resolution in the frame centre,good resolution on the edge of the frame,
- excellent correction of chromatic aberration,
- slight spherical aberration,
- good coma correction,
- negligible astigmatism,
- moderate vignetting,
- good transmission.
- noticeable distortion,
- unreliable autofocus,
- work against bright light could have been better.
Out of three lenses, launched along the Fujifilm X-Pro1, the 2.4/60 model has the best pros to cons ratio. Does it mean it is the best? It would be difficult to answer such a question unambiguously. Usually 60-150 mm macro lenses fare very well in our tests, often breaking resolution records or at least coming close to it. The Fujinon 2.4/60 doesn’t break any records despite its long list of advantages but it must be emphasized that the quality of images, provided by that lens, is still very good. Perhaps the fact that from the very beginning the lens was designed not as a typical macro device but as a compromise between a classic macro photographic instrument and a portrait lens is the reason. Compromises and emphasis on versatility result in gains in one area and unavoidable losses in the other.
Objectively we must admit that the losses of the Fujinon 2.4/60 are not very important so this lens is a quite successful compromise. Its biggest slip-up seems to be the autofocus but we hope that with the new firmware and new bodies, appearing in that system, the problems with setting the focus will go away and be forgotten.
See on www.lenstip.com
Hold on to your hats, this is the most extensive test ever posted on MyFinePix. We invited Ray Forthergill to test the Fujifilm X-Pro1 along with a trio of lenses and test it he most certainly did. Over to you, Ray…
Firstly, may I say this is a long review, so if you want the main results but miss the finer points go straight to the end for the summary. On first unpacking the X-Pro 1 and the current available three FX lenses the initial impression on looking at and feeling the products is one of quality. All metal construction of both camera and lenses with what looks like leather around the body of the camera’s face and back. It’s not heavy even with the largest 60mm macro lens attached and weighs less and is smaller than my S100fs. A front rubberised grip for your right hand also helps with the tactile feeling of this camera. Surface buttons and dials feel solid and are well placed around the body and are of good size and well marked in a way that does not look as if it will wear off over time. Having come from mainly bridge style cameras and DSLRs I was awaiting this arrival with some trepidation, as I knew this camera would challenge me , though whether in a good or bad way was yet to be seen. The trepidation was two fold. First the body had an optical straight through old style view finder reminiscent of my parent’s Kodak box brownie. I realised that could present problems with framing but I’ll get to that later. Second, there were two dials. One on top that had shutter speeds an ‚A‘ on it as well as a couple of positions for custom settings and bulb etc. In all a pretty busy little dial. I have never had to use a dial like that before and wondered if it would slow down the way I normally work. The second dial at the back of the camera below the top one was a command style type I’m used to. The fn button was on the top right of the top dial, normally a pretty useless button for me on most cameras but came in useful later.
The Lenses again are very well made with proper aperture rings with a light but positive click positioning system you could feel without looking at and metal lens hoods of which one was round and quite deep for the 60mm lens and two that had squared off front ends which made them look quite stylish and blended with the style of camera body……
See on www.myfinepix.co.uk
It has been exactly 1 week since I received an Fujifilm X-Pro1 camera. Thanks to the luck of the draw and a twitter contest held by Photographer Chase Jarvis and the ASMP (American Society of Media Photographers) I was picked to win the Fujifilm X-Pro1 camera and a 35 ƒ1.4 lens. Since it arrived it has more or less sat around waiting for me to take it for a spin and today was it’s lucky day. I didn’t want to post another review of the X-Pro1 since there are already a ton of them online. Photographers Danny Bligh and Patrick La Roque have posted their reviews/POV of the X-Pro1 and are good reads if you are interested in learning more about the camera. I did however want to give some 1st impressions of the camera from my own point-of-view. Until now I have been shooting Nikon cameras and glass. I recently added a Fuji X100 to my lineup as my „everyday life“ camera. If I was working I had my Nikon gear, if I was going to the park with my family I took the Fuji. This has been a perfect plan and gave me defined boundaries for what to use when. Then the X-Pro1 came along and muddled it all up. For months I have read about other photographers switching from great Nikon gear (like the D700) to the X-Pro1 and I was blown away. Really?? That seems like a pretty big change to me. The D700 is a FANTASTIC camera and seeing a smaller „different“ camera taking its place did not compute. I get it now. The X-Pro1 is that good. Personally I won’t be switching or getting rid of my Nikon gear, but depending on the type of shoot I would be doing the X-Pro1 may very well be the camera of choice. It is a bit slower in the frames-per-second dept but I don’t tend to shoot events the need high FPS. The Nikon focuses faster, but the X-Pro1 is pretty snappy, especially after the recent firmware update that was released for it. In either case, I don’t believe that it would be much of a factor for what I shoot. The main thing that stands out to me is that It feels SO natural to use. In less then and hour I was already used to the controls on the back of the camera without having to take it away from my face to see the buttons. Its VERY light and comfortable to use. In a way if feels a lot like a D700, just all wrapped up in a different body. The quality of the images have been very good as well. I have not tested it in extreme low light yet, but it does seem to do well in the lighting situations I have thrown at it. At the moment I am shooting in Jpeg since Aperture 3 does not support the X-Pro1 RAW files, but the resulting images right out of camera have been excellent. So there you go. I still have a lot more to shoot with this camera before I can form an exact opinion, but so far I have falling in love with this little camera and look forward to the images I can make with it.
See on photonate.com
My cameras at the moment are Fuji’s. I have both X-Pro1 and X100. I have tried to learn to use X-Pro1 lately a lot and it really has a deeper learning curve that I initially thought of. I have always lots of hassling with the camera adjustments and I do not have a constant way to shoot with it at the moment. Every time I grab my X100 I feel like I am home.
I really love how solid feeling X100 has. Much better than X-Pro1 I think. Feels better in my hands. I think this is a bigger question than many people admit. How the camera feels.
Another big thing is the physical size. X100 is quite nicely pocketable or at least it needs a very small camera bag. If I go to a trek into the woods for example I usually take X100 with me because it is so handy to carry with you. I feel so even if X-Pro1 is small camera compared to those bulky dSLRs. I had earlier Canon 5D Mk II which was not very comfortable camera to carry around.
See on jonnenaarala.wordpress.com