Autofocus and Performance
The XF10 sensor features 91 focus points, arrayed in a 13×7 grid, with the central 35 focus points having phase-detection AF capabilities. However, one of the weak points of the X70 was its rather slow autofocus performance, and unfortunately, nothing has changed with the XF10. The lens is the weak point here, as the phase-detect focus points and Fuji’s focus algorithms have been on point for quite some time. The XF10’s lens is just downright pokey. In good light, focus speeds are reasonably quick provided you aren’t changing focus position too much, but in dimmer light, focus is quite slow. In backlit situations, it’s downright awful, often failing to find focus at all if the AF assist light is off or the subject is too far away for it to be effective. If used for travel photography, which often doesn’t require quick focus, it’s not a major problem, but it is not going to be a camera you will use for action, or even for a lot of candid people shots where precise focus is needed.
Fujifilm seems to know this as well, but rather than redesign the lens motors, they’ve implemented a ‘snapshot’ mode, which has two settings, which utilize f/5.6 or f/8, and focus to the hyperfocal distance for each aperture. In this mode, the camera does not focus at all…it immediately locks focus at the hyperfocal distance and just allows for instant shutter response. This is a mode I think a lot of people will use for street photography, and it works well. Still, I’d rather have faster and surer autofocus.
The XF10 is also not a performance camera, as it lacks the latest processors from Fujifilm, but it does a good enough job for its use case. The camera shoots at a reasonable 6 frames per second in burst mode, but the buffer is quite shallow at just 13 JPEGs, or only 5 RAW files before slowing down. It might be useful for capturing a quick burst occasionally, but I think most people are going to be using the camera in single shot mode most of the time. File writes happen at reasonable speed, but again, it’s not a speed demon here.
Battery life on the XF10 is about average for a small camera, at around 300 shots CIPA rated. I purchased (and would recommend purchasing) an extra battery, but for casual shooting, the battery should last a typical day. I don’t imagine too many people will be putting thousands of frames a day through a camera like the XF10, but if you plan on that, I’d also plan on bringing lots of batteries.
The XF10 uses a leaf shutter rather than a focal-plane shutter, which offers two nice advantages. First, the camera can flash sync at very high shutter speeds. Combined with Fuji’s very good fill-flash algorithms, the XF10’s built-in flash is great for adding a bit of pop to a subject when in shadow or when backlit during daylight. The shot above is one that shows the flash capabilities, but also was a shot that the AF failed on. The subject was completely in shadow, with very little light in front, but lots of light from the back. It took me around 30 seconds of fiddling before I was able to get the camera to focus properly. While there is some of that harsh direct flash look, Fujifilm’s flash algorithms did a great job with exposure here, balancing the natural light and flash.
The second thing that is useful about a leaf shutter is that it is extremely quiet. The XF10 has an electronic shutter, but unless you are shooting in complete silence, the leaf shutter is quiet enough that it can be used in most any situation without distraction. The electronic shutter does allow for shooting as fast as 1/16,000s rather than the 1/4000s of the leaf shutter, which comes in handy when shooting in bright light wide open.
The XF10 comes with a rather full set of features that people have come to expect on Fujifilm cameras, including comprehensive connectivity options, in-camera RAW conversion and so on.
Wi-Fi / Bluetooth
Fujifilm cameras have had Wi-Fi connectivity in them since the X-E2, and the XF10 has Wi-Fi as well, but also adds Bluetooth to the mix, which expands the feature set and simplifies things somewhat, especially with regards to geotagging your images.
The XF-10 has the same Wi-Fi features as other recent Fujifilm cameras, allowing for image transfer to mobile devices, remote control with a live feed from the camera transmitted to the connected device, geotagging and so on. The addition of Bluetooth makes geotagging notably simpler. After pairing the camera with a phone and launching the Fujifilm Remote app, the camera will automatically connect to the phone when powering on without any further interaction with your phone. As a result, the camera can obtain the local time directly from your phone (which is great when traveling to a different time zone), as well as request location data and keep that location current. When I travel, I often will pull the camera out, take a few shots, shut it off and put it away, and repeat. With bluetooth on, I never have to touch the phone after first launching the app, and I still maintain good geotagging.
Prior to the advent of bluetooth in cameras, I never bothered with geotagging, as the process was too cumbersome to do in daily shooting. Bluetooth gets rid of that barrier and makes it fast and easy.
In-Camera RAW Conversion
While this feature is unchanged from all other Fuji-X Series cameras, I feel it’s worth discussing again. Fuji has, in my opinion, the most straightforward and useful in-camera RAW conversion capabilities. This is especially useful when shooting RAW only and transferring images via Wi-Fi, as it allows you to do moderately nuanced conversion to a full-size JPEG, which you can then directly share with Wi-Fi. RAW conversion is the same as on other Fuji cameras, but there’s no need to change what’s already very well done.
The in-camera RAW conversion function can be called up simply by pressing the Q button during image review. You are then presented with a multi-page list of parameters that can be adjusted. These allow you to change white balance, push or pull exposure, adjust highlight and shadow roll-off, change to any of the excellent built-in film simulations and more. Once you’ve made your adjustments, you can preview the result and then save it if you like what you see, or continue adjustment if you so desire.
17 thoughts on “Review: Fujifilm XF10”
This is a very good review as far as I can see based on my experience with the camera. Thank you, Jordan! The XF10 is not perfect but very good. Compared with Ricoh GR it stands quite well. So people who use other Fuji cameras might like a small street camera with good handling, two special settings for snap shot and a familiar menu structure.
Hello! Thanks for the review! Can you please write something about the manual focus using the front ring? Because I want to know if at anytime I have trouble with the auto focus I can rely on the manual focus and use something like focus peaking. Thanks for the attention!
Using manual focus with the front ring works OK, but the feel is not great compared to any decent lens. It’s doable, but not a preferred way to operate.
I’ve just bought one of these as a small “walkabout ” camera to complement my X-T20 bodies and lenses. I thought it might be a bit too wide for my liking but having found out about the digital teleconverter which changes the focal length to 35 or 50mm (equivalent) (I can’t see any loss of quality) it’s growing on me and I’ve been taking it everywhere, especially on my dog walks. As Peter Krumme says, not perfect but good. Incidentally, I use the front ring to change the focal lengths.
I use the fujifilm exactly as you use it, including the converter. I also use it for a walk with the dog. 🙂 I also don’t miss the viewfinder, rather it would bother me.
jordan , its cosinaphile from ep1 dot net and the other m43 forums
i think you site has evolved toward excellence ,,, and the review here is amng the best anywhere
i remember you shooting back about 9 r 10 years ago ,,, and it was extremely average and boring
well … your shot of late have been excellent …. youve learned well and cultivated an eye to formal forces
and visual needs …
congrats and keep up the great work
paul in nyc
Thanks for the kind words, Paul. Good to hear from you!
I ordered one today. At this moment in Belgium (I live in the Netherlands) the gold/brown ones are being sold for 329 euro. The black ones are sold for 439 euro.
No idea why the gold ones are so cheap at that particular storen.
Anyway, I own a Ricoh GR which I really like, but not the color pics.
I don’t like 35 mm and never heard of the Fuji XF10.
The X70 is to big for me.
I downloaded soms raw files from the Fuji to practise to see if it was hard to handle but I think I can get used to it. To camera’s this ligt wont’t bother me but as soon as I have it, I’am gonna try to look the Fuji like the Ricoh for black and white in post processing. If I succeed, this will be my only camera 🙂
Thank you for your review. I always wanted a Fuji someday for the amazing warm red and brown colors that no matter how strong they are, don’t look ugly oversaturated but instead makes me want to visit the place on the picture 😀
I’ve got him. Not happy so far.
Tried all the settings and thislike them all.
Nothing I’ve seen in samples.
Very slow shutter. After you’ve already pushed the button, you have to wait a short while before you are allowed to move.
In automatic mode, it doesn’t care choosing shutter speed of 1/20 instead of including the flash.
Couldn’t make a single shot that was better looking then pictures of my Samsung S10 which is not exactly the best Samsung cam.
Tomorrow I will shoot some raws and if that doesn’t work, I’ll return it.
Have you returned it?
The XF10 is the one camera I can’t get a final verdict of.
It could be the perfect beater-cam, sth you don’t have to worry much about.
It seems to be discontinued, prices are low, but an updated version might be
around that finally addresses all of the Xf10s shortcomings.
I received my XF10 a couple of days ago. Have been on the side for some time, contemplating the XF10 vs. GRiii and comparing to my aging RX100ii, for a very portable / pocketable camera.
I am happy with my new XF10 so far and the upgrade in image quality is huge as compared to the RX100 – sharpness, low light capability and color quality. There are always things that could be better, but if you know what you are doing and plan your work flow around the features of the camera it is perfectly fine. AF is no problem here, just set the spot size suitable and aim for contrast.
Overall, a great camera and worth its price so far.
The Swipe commands on screen work TERRIBLE, sometimes swipe 5x or more for it to work depend on what direction….sick of this…may sell it
Have you got a screen saver on it?
I have theXF10 and use it daily, I feel it’s image quality is close to my X100V. A very beautiful image tinybeast
I run a blog and feature it alongside my V
What a surprise that I have taken with this little camera, which looks like toys.
I can’t believe how it has so many negative reviews.
The camera is a beast in terms of sharpness (I have had many cameras and many lenses of many many hundreds of dollars and in its focal range it has no paragon).
Its size makes it really portable, as it fits in the pocket of a jeans.
the focus, so feared by many, is not a problem, if you take a small point of focus and logically the appropriate speed so that the photos do not come out jittery.
noise control at high isolates is also excellent.
the controls may be the least agile of this camera but you get used to it quickly.
the battery lasts a long time.
the snap mode is really effective and takes you to the Ricoh GR.
IMHO the XF10 outperforms the Ricoh GRIII in sharpness by far.
Also you forget about the dust problem.
If you find it in the second-hand market, don’t hesitate, be it black or gold, buy it because if you don’t, others will.
I’ve just bough a second hand one of these. It has the latest firm ware so has a faster focussing time than the original. It is a camera that takes a bit of study and will require different settings for a variety of shooting styles, but when it works it really works! Your shots are great!
So I decided to sell my XF10 in December last year and regrettably that wa a mistake!
I missed it so much a friend had one so I got it from her for the bargain price of £200 and it’s mint.
Aaaah back to the little powerhouse again