- Truly outstanding dynamic range
- Beautiful color and tonal response
- Excellent noise control, yielding noise free images through ISO 800 and low noise images through ISO 3200. Even higher ISOs yield quite usable shots.
- Fantastic control scheme and intuitive interface. It makes it truly fun to shoot with.
- Very high-resolution EVF
- Sleek design with corner integrated viewfinder that is light and comfortable to hold
- Autofocus is very accurate, even in low light (v.2.0)
- Outstanding out of camera JPEGs
- Focus peaking works well (v.2.0) and can be easily changed simply by pressing and holding the command wheel.
Autofocus is slower than competitors and can sometimes fail to find focus at all in lower lightWith firmware 2.0, these issues have been remedied. Focus is still slower than competitors, but not too far behind, and low light focusing has been dramatically improved.
- Continuous Autofocus is unusable for tracking action
- Some shutter lag
- Can’t zoom the viewfinder for manual focus when the camera is writing to a card
- Camera’s build quality, while generally good, has some minor issues with fit and finish
- Viewfinder can get laggy in low light
- Rear LCD is too dim in bright sunlight
- Some minor funkiness still possible with very high detail repeating patterns in some RAW conversion software, though much improved over even a month ago.
- Tripod socket and battery door can get in the way.
With the release of firmware version 2.0, the original conclusion is no longer valid. I have rewritten portions of the conclusion to coincide with version 2.0.
Overall, the Fujifilm X-E1 is not a perfect camera. The EVF can get laggy at times in dim light and there are some other minor annoyances. Originally, the X-E1 had some serious issues in the autofocus department, though these appear to have been predominantly remedied by firmware version 2.0, which has increased autofocus speed and dramatically improved the ability for the camera to find focus in dim lighting conditions.
On the positive side, the outstanding dynamic range, great noise control and beautiful tonal depth create images that look like they came from a full frame sensor. And, despite the fact that the camera doesn’t focus quite as quickly as some other mirrorless systems, the camera is an absolute joy to shoot with. Controls are simple and quick to change and everything you need as a photographer is just right there. I love shooting with the X-E1, and the output seriously impresses. The original X-E1 as released had some serious shortcomings, but Fujifilm has been diligent in providing continual updates to the camera, and in the course of the past few firmware updates, has created a camera that is a joy to shoot with and with the exception of poor continuous autofocus, can meet the needs of most every type of shooting. An excellent mirrorless camera.
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