Earlier this month I treated myself with a brand new gadget: The Fuji X-E1 with the 35mm f1.4 lens. I guess there are three reasons why you would buy this camera: Looks and style, formfactor and / or picture quality.
If you’re into that oldschool camera look and you might not want or just plain can’t spend that much money on a Leica, then a Fuji X Series camera is probably for you. Or maybe you just don’t know, if all the manual operation of a Leica is something you’d enjoy everytime.
The Fuji X-E1 is a comparetively small camera while keeping important manual settings, i.e. buttons and especially knobs, at your fingertips. Moreover a very good image quality in such a small body is something a lot of DSLR users are always looking for.
The Fuji X-Series, especially the X-Pro1 and the X-E1 with their X-Trans Sensors, are known for their excellent image quality. I will not get into technical details here, there are a lot of good reviews on the net.
I bought the Fuji X-E1 especially for the image quality and it’s formfactor. I have the Fuji S5 Pro and I always loved that camera for it’s image quality. On jobs I started using my Nikon more. And for the everyday and “always with me” camera a DSLR is just to big for my (lazy) taste. That’s where the X-E1 fits perfectly. Of course I have to admit, that the look of the X-E1 was also a reason to buy it.
That might all sound very promising, but not everything is well of course. The X-E1 is not the fastest and most reliable when it comes down to autofocusing. Especially in not so perfect light situations (this can even just be a room with a fairly bright desklamp) the X-E1 starts to hunt a little bit. This is a result of the contrast detection auto focus. To help autofocus you can tilt the camera a little bit, because diagonal or vertical lines help focusing quicker.
As a DSLR user the way the shutter release button works is quite annoying. Half pressing the button will autofocus, and a full press will take a picture of course. On a DSLR you can keep half pressing and it will save your focus after you took a picture. On the X-E1 this does not “count”. Even though you’ve kept half pressing the button, after taking a picture the X-E1 will focus again when full pressing the button again.
In conclusion I have to say that I love this camera so far. Besides the autofocus issues the camera is a joy to operate and the images are incredible. I only have been using this camera for only a week now, but I will write a follow up in a month or so.
– Image Quality
– great lenses
– good ISO quality
– relatively small size
– Weak battery life
– not weathersealed