FujiFilm FinePix X100 - Throwback to Rangefinder With Modern Internals

Who is FujiFilm

FujiFilm began its camera making operations back in 1934 with a motion picture camera. The company celebrated it's seventy-fifth year of operation in 2009.

Fujifilm Holdings Corporation or Fujifilm  is a Japanese company known for its photographic film and cameras. It is headquartered Tokyo. The company has other offices in the Nishiazabu Building in Minato.  Fujifilm is the world’s largest photographic and imaging company, well ahead of Nikon, Olympus, Pentax, and Canon. 

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FinePix X100 (front)FinePix X100 in foreground. 1970s Canon rangefinder on back left; 1970s Olympus rangefinger on back right
FinePix X100 (front)
FinePix X100 (front) | Source
FinePix X100 in foreground. 1970s Canon rangefinder on back left; 1970s Olympus rangefinger on back right
FinePix X100 in foreground. 1970s Canon rangefinder on back left; 1970s Olympus rangefinger on back right | Source
FinePix X100 (back)
FinePix X100 (back) | Source
FinePix X100 (top)
FinePix X100 (top) | Source
FinePix X100 (view finder optical and digital overlay)
FinePix X100 (view finder optical and digital overlay) | Source

FinePix X100

Despite it's looks the X100 features a single lens reflex (SLR) size APS-C digital sensor and traditional looking analog control dials. Despite the dated look the camera itself is as modern and up to date as the Canon EOS 60D, the Nikon D7000 or the Pentax K-5.

This is FujiFilm's first camera with a large, APS-C sensor. It is designed for both professionals and advanced amateurs and is the first such camera of this type since the S5 Pro DSLR of 2006.

The X100, though, is very different. At first glance, and even subseqent viewing it looks exactly like a ninteen seventies rangefinder camera. It even has the type of lens and the typical viewfinder placement to the left of the lens. The lens, by the way is a very fast, F2 maximum aperture semi-wideangle lens with a classic 35mm field of view.

The controls along the top are typical of analog style of the 70s era, but they all control the most of the electronics within the camera. Controls adjust shutter speed, aperture, and exposure. The focus is a "by wire" where the adjustments on the lens actually electronically adjust focus. Perhaps the neatest thing about the camera is the hybrid viewfinder. It is optical with a digital overlay.

Looking at the back, however, you get a whole other impression of the camera. Starting at the viewfinder and working left to right, top to bottom, you'll see a diopter correction wheel next to the viewfinder.  To the far right of that a zoom thumbwheel control. Below that to the left you'll see buttons for playback, auto exposure (AE), auto focus (AF), view mode, and then a rather large LCD full color screen for playback and photo composing. To the right of the screen you'll see a menu button in the center of a rocker that controls delete, flash setting, white balance, and macro shooting mode. Below that are two buttons that control the image capture (JPEG/RAW or JPEG only) a back button.

The camera has a huge CCD sensor for its size at 23.6mm×15.8mm (1" x 0.6").

The X100 has many adjustments for image enhancement include fluorescent lighting, shade, incandescent, underwater, custom, and even color temperature selection.

The camera comes with a Lithium Ion battery, charger, USB cable, lens cap, metal strap clip, protective cover, CD-ROM (with software), and owner's manual.

For a full list of specifications see the table below.

Other Features

The X100 also includes:

  • 12 megapixel APS-C sized CMOS sensor
  • Fixed 23mm F2 lens (field of view equivalent to a 35mm lens on full frame)
  • 2.8" LCD screen, 4:3 aspect ratio, 460,000 dots
  • Hybrid optical / electronic viewfinder
  • OVF with 0.5x magnification, projected framelines indicate approx 90% of field of view
  • EVF with 0.5x magnification, 1,440,000 dots
  • Traditional-style control dials for shutter speed, aperture and exposure compensation
  • ISO 100 (L), 200-6400, 12800 (H/Push)
  • Flash hot shoe and built-in flash
  • Built-in neutral density filter (3 stops)
  • 1280x720 HD movie recording with stereo sound (720p)

Pricing
The camera is already available in Europe, but does not seem to be available in the U.S. as yet. Prices for U.S. consumers on European websites have the camera listed at around $1,200.

FujiFilm FinePix X100
 
Model Name
FinePix X100
Number of effective pixels
12.3 million pixels
Image sensor
23.6mm15.8mm APS-C CMOS with primary color filter
Storage Media
Internal memory (Approx. 20MB)
 
SD memory card / SDHC memory card / SDXC(UHS-I) memory card
File format (still image)
JPEG
 
RAW (RAF format), RAW+JPEG
(movie)
H.264 MOV with Stereo sound
Number of recorded pixels
L: <3:2>4288 x 2848
 
L: <16:9>4288 x 2416
 
M: <3:2>3072 x 2048
 
L: <16:9>3072 x 1728
 
S: <3:2>2176 x 1448
 
S: <16:9>1920 x 1080
Lens (name)
Fujinon Single focal length lens
Focal Length
f=23mm, equivalent to 35mm on a 35mm camera
Aperture
F2 - F16/3EV step (controlled with 9-blade aperture diaphragm)
Lens Construction
6 groups 8 lenses (1 aspherical glass molded lens included)
Focal Distance
2.6 ft. to infinity
Macro
3.9 in.- 6.6
ISO Sensitivity
Equivalent to ISO 200 - 6400
 
Sensitivity equivalent ISO 100 or 12800
 
ISO AUTO Control available
Exposure control
Through the Lens 256-zones metering, Multi / Spot / Average
Exposure mode
Programmed AE, Shutter priority AE, Aperture priority AE, Manual exposure
Shutter Speed
1/4 sec. to 1/4000 plus Bulb
Continuous shooting
Up to 10fp/s JPEG
 
Up to 8 frames per second /RAW or RAW+JPEG
Auto Exposure Ajustment for:
Fine, Shade, Fluorescent light (Daylight)
 
Fluorescent light (Warm White), Fluorescent light (Cool White)
 
Incandescent light, underwater, Custom, Color temperature selection
Self-timer
Approx. 10sec. / 2sec. Delay
Flash
Auto flash (super intelligent flash)
 
Effective range: (ISO 1600) approx. 50 cm ~ 9 m / 1.6 ft. ~ 29.5. ft.
Flash modes
Red-eye removal OFF: Auto, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Synchro.
Hot shoe
Yes (dedicated TTL Flash compatible)
Viewfinder
Hybrid viewfinder
 
Optical viewfinder
 
Reverse Galilean viewfinder with electronic bright frame display
LCD monitor
2.8-inch, approx. 460,000 dots, TFT color LCD monitor (Approx. 100% coverage)
Movie recording
1280 x 720 pixels (24frames / sec.) with stereo sound
 
Individual movies can not exceed 10 minutes in length.
Photography functions
elect custom setting, Motion panorama, Color spaced
 
Film simulation, Auto red-eye removal, Framing guideline, Frame No. memory,
 
Histogram display, Preview depth of focus, Focus check, Electronic level, One-touch RAW
Playback functions
RAW conversion, Image rotate, Photobook assist
 
Erase selected frames, image search, Multi-frame playback (with micro thumbnail),
 
Slide show, Mark for upload, Protect, Crop, Resize, Protect, Panorama, Favorites
Other functions
PictBridge, Exif Print, 35 languages selection
 
Time difference, Quick start mode,
 
OVF power save mode, Silent mode, Shutter sound select
Terminal (Digital interface)
USB 2.0 High-Speed
(HD output)
HDMI mini connector
Power supply
NP-95 Li-ion battery (included)
Dimensions
5.0 x 2.9 x 2.1" [126.5 x 74.4 x 53.9 mm]
Weight
14.3 oz / 405g (excluding accessories, battery and memory card)
Accessories included
Li-ion battery NP-95
 
Battery charger BC-65N
 
Shoulder strap
 
USB cable for the FinePix X100
 
Lens cap
 
Metal strap clip
 
Protective cover
 
Clip attaching tool
 
CD-ROM (Viewer software, RAW File Converter etc. *3 )
 
Owner's manual
Optional accessories
Li-ion battery NP-95
 
Battery charger BC-65N
 
Leather case LC-X100
 
Lens hood LH-X100
 
Adapter ring AR-X100
 
Shoe mount flash EF-20, EF-42

Coda

This is an interesting offering. Though it is somewhat gimmicky in it's very convincing attempt to look like a camera from forty years ago, it is also a very sophisticated hobby camera with many functions, relatively high resolution and a good pedigree.

Because image quality is only 12 Megapixel and the movie capture is limited to the low end of High-Definition this might be best viewed as a back-up camera or a camera for the beginner.

The X100 is currently listed at around $1,200.00.

Disclaimer

The author was not compensated in any way, monetarily, with discounts, or freebies by any of the companies mentioned.

Though the author does make a small profit for the word count of this article none of that comes directly from the manufacturers mentioned. The author also stands to make a small profit from advertising attached to this article.

The author has no control over either the advertising or the contents of those ads.

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Comments 1 comment

Evert Albers - Streeff.nl 5 years ago

Looks like a digital equivalent of my old Konica Hexar. I'm afraid I'll have to buy one.

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